- John Baillie: "Humility is the obverse side of confidence in God, whereas pride is the obverse side of confidence in self." 12:41:09 PM January 12, 2016
- Dallas Willard: "Individuals who are disciples and friends of Jesus stand in this world as a point of contact between heaven and earth." 05:11:00 PM January 11, 2016
- E.M. Bounds: "Every preacher who does not make prayer a mighty factor in his own life and ministry is weak as a factor in God's work." 02:09:02 PM January 10, 2016
LOOKING UNTO JESUS, Hebrews 12:1-2
June 17th, 2016
Introduction: One of the common dangers in Christian life is to give up when circumstances change and things do not go as we had expected. In John 6:67, Jesus turns to His twelve disciples and asks a very deep and searching question, “Do you want to go away as well?” The reason for asking the particular question is found in Verse 66 of same chapter, “After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him”.
During the early Church the Christians were at the verge of giving up, they were discouraged, disappointed and were losing hope! Firstly due to the severe persecution and secondly, delay in the fulfillment of the Divine Promises such as Jesus’ immediate return, the resurrection of believers and the coming of New Jerusalem.
It is in this context the writer to Hebrews in Chapter 12 encourages the Church to “ Look unto Jesus ” and run the race set before us.
Why should we run?
Verse 1 says, Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses
What is the great cloud? The faithful believers in chapter 11 are the cloud of witnesses. They had their failures and short comings, but they are witnesses of what God can do, when we look up to Him. They are the ones who have passed on the legacy for us to continue with endurance.
Verse 1b, Let us run with Endurance
Christian life is compared to Running and not simply running, like a morning jogging or a 100 meters dash! It is running in a race as in a marathon or a relay race.
In this race it is not Competition but Concentration and singleness of purpose that matters. This race is for eternal life, for godliness, to know God, to have fellowship with Him now and forever!
The rules for running in this race lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely. We are cautioned about the possible challenges when we run and make sure we put aside anything that hinders us.
Finally, we are to Hold on to your Confidence
Our confidence in running this race is Jesus Christ! We are encouraged to Look unto Him and run. Turn away from your past failures, past sins, past life, past successes, past glory, and Look unto Jesus Christ!
You may ask why?
Well, for 3 reasons
We look to Him because of WHO HE IS
We look to Him because of WHAT HE DID
We look to Him because of WHERE HE REIGNS!
Who is He? He is the author and finisher of our faith! Before you and me, Jesus ran this race successfully! He knows everything about this race!
What did He do? He endured the Cross! Despising its shame! He did it for you and me.
Where He reigns? At the right hand of the Father, He is on the Throne of the Universe!
Jesus did all this so that you will not be discouraged in your souls.
Dear friends, God has been faithful to us during the last academic year and we were able to complete it successfully. As we being a new academic year, this is our theme, “ Looking unto Jesus”. There have been changes in the structure of the Bible College and keeping in line with our Vision and mission, we have started the Bachelor of Theology (B.Th.), program to cater to the growing need of pastors and evangelists in rural areas. We request you to pray that more students will be able to join in this program.
Thanks for your prayers.
Grace Redeems and uses ordinary people
June 8th, 2016
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellences of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy (I Pet 2:9-10).
God is faithful in saving people and also building His Kingdom. God has His own way of revealing Himself to people that do not know Him. As the writer of the Hebrews says, “God who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son…” (Hebrews 1:1-2). It is He who revealed Himself to Narayana and his wife and saved them by His grace and called them to ministry. Responding to that call of the sovereign God Narayana started serving Him faithfully in the village of Jadapeta.
God promised to build His Church.
Narayana’s faith is so strong and he along with his wife whole heartedly believed in Matthew 16:18, that He will build His Church and gates of hades will not prevail against it. It is with that faith he decided to bring God’s light to Jadapeta village. Jadapeta is a rural village with about 500 people and about 150 houses. Most of the villagers work in farm lands and a few of them have their own lands. After faithful proclamation and much prayers and fasting, eight (8) families have come to know the love and saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. There are about 25 people who devoted to Jesus Christ and who have earnestly prayed for a place to worship. God had opened doors and they were able now to have a building where the Church could meet, this edifice was dedicated in April 2016. This is the first Church that was established in this village and we praise God who has promised to build His Church and will continue to do so until His return. Amen.
Sing for Joy (VBS 2016).
May 11th, 2016
Vacation Bible School (VBS) was conducted in Master’s fellowship, Vizag from May 2nd-7th 2016. Vision to conduct VBS is to sow the word of God in the little hearts. The Word to lead them, guide them, guard them and protect them in their life. The theme of VBS 2016 is “Sing for Joy”, (PS 98:4). The children are precious in the sight of the God and they should be joyful always.
Master’s Fellowship (MF) stood by the side of the children, and extended their support in all possible ways. Many came forward voluntarily to be as volunteers and teachers, they took care of the children and lead them along with the pastoral team all these six days. Beyond our expectation nearly 136 children attended the VBS, between the age group of 4 to 14 years. They are divided into three groups as: beginners (4-6years); primary (7-9years); and juniors (10-14 years).
VBS is a six day program of three hours per day. And each day is scheduled as:
• The day begins with praise and worship followed by classes.
• They were taught challenging life stories of John Hyde, Florence Nightingale and others from the Scriptures. Children’s material was given to them.
• Competitions for children was conducted from storytelling, memory verses etc., and prizes were awarded on the last day.
Parents attended on the last day of VBS and were thrilled how well it was conducted and how blessed their children were. God was so gracious and merciful that he took care of all the 136 children, and none of them fell sick inspite of the hot weather. It was God who made this program a big success. Thanks be to God and glory to Him alone.
A Response of a Child: When a question was asked, “Why God created man?” this is how one of the child responded. He said, because not any of the creatures that were created can utter a word, God created man and gave the opportunity to say ‘thank you’ God for everything.
Teacher’s Experience: As teachers, we had learned more than the children whom we taught. Their answers surprised me and even on the last day my class people came and said thanks. I always thought I should have gone to Bible College instead of Engineering so I can work for God every day. But I am now convinced that I can talk about God and be a fisher of men(children in VBS) anywhere I am and wherever I work.
MCT Introduces a new course from June 2016
May 3rd, 2016
Master’s College of Theology (MCT), a theological wing of Vision Nationals, has been able to complete its 20 years of existence only because of the guidance and bountiful providence of God in every sphere of its life. Through every stage of its existence and at every juncture, God’s guidance is clearly visible. It is only because of the grace of God that MCT had been instrumental in equipping young men and women from different parts of India and abroad for the ministry of God. Presently, the college is offering a Bachelor of Divinity(B.D) course.
However, in order to be able to equip more people for the ministry in more effective manner, MCT is venturing into a new area of theological training by extending its borders to train many more people who are willing to equip themselves for the ministry. With this vision, for the coming academic year, 2016-2017, MCT is re-introducing a Bachelor of Theology(B.Th course), because of the felt need of training ministers who would be able to work at the grass-root level. As such, the B.Th course is designed in such a way that it would reflect the visions of the Vision Nationals ministries. Presently, the course is under development. Under the guidance of our Director, Dr. Arjuna Chiguluri and through the sincere efforts of dedicated faculties, the development of the syllabus is almost at its completion.
Efforts have also been made towards the development of detailed notes by MCT faculty who have sacrificed some of their summer time. We also have some friends from abroad who are also a part of all of these new developements. We are also seeking ATA (Asia Theological Association) accreditation for the program. MCT family earnestly seek prayer support from all prayer partners and well-wishers as we begin this new venture.
Women of Prayer(at the Master’s Feet)
April 13th, 2016
A one day retreat for women was held on April 8th, 2016, at Master’s Fellowship, Visakhapatnam, under the theme “At the Master’s Feet.” This is the first retreat held for women in our church. Through an encouraging and motivating message delivered by Mrs. Ratna Grace on the theme, “At the Master’s Feet” all the delegates in the retreat were greatly blessed.
The main purpose of the retreat was to encourage women towards spiritual growth through spending quality time with God, so that they can play their role effectively in their family. The importance of the role of women in the lives of their children and husband was very strongly emphasized. As such, in order to have positive godly impact on the lives of the children and husband it is important to spend quality time at the feet of the Master just like Mary did. In spite of the pressure of work at home and/or workplace it is important to give priority to be with God. These are some of the things that was emphasized by the speaker.
This retreat being the first of its kind in Master’s fellowship specifically for women, it also opened their eyes to understand the purpose of their lives- the purpose of why God created them, being women and mothers what role can they play in their families towards drawing their family members closer to God.
Towards the end of the retreat there was a time of sharing from the delegates, many of whom testified how this retreat has helped them.
One of the new believes said, she struggles with her husband and his life style. Though she shared the gospel to him for the last few years he did not give up his habits and take care of the family in a respectful manner. Therefore the whole family had suffered. But in this respect she said, now I know my role as a mother and wife is so important to bring change in my family. I am reminded that God has a purpose for me to learn in all this and also I need to seek God and wait on Him continually till my prayers are answered. I know now there is hope in God and I am His chosen instrument to bring change and blessings into my family.
Having heard this testimony, there was another who testified and said, I came to faith about twelve years back and I have been praying for my husband since then. I had fasted and prayed continuously, shed tears many a times and God did open the door finally and now my husband had trusted Christ and now worships with her every week.
God is at work. Paul said it clearly, “for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” (Phil 2:13).
To be Good Soldiers for the Master
March 26th, 2016
Master’s College of Theology(a Theological wing of VN) has been training candidates for ministry since 1996 offering diploma courses in the beginning. In 2003 we are affiliated to Serampore University and since then we started offering Bachelor of Theology and then we had moved on to Bachelor of Divinity which is the same as Masters program.
This year on Mar 18th 2016, nine(9) students were graduated. Each graduate has a wonderful testimony and are commited to do ministry. I would like for you to know one of them is Kishore korkora.
Kishore comes from Odisha state. Kishore was born 14 years after his parents were married. Kishore parents were very poor common laborers and there lively hood was always hard because they used to go into the forest and bring firewood and sold it to the people. After his XII Grade, Kishore joined college and could not complete it due to lack of finances. It was then he started working as a teacher since 2003. He also got married in the same year. Though he felt the call of God several times while working, he neglected it because of no financial support. Finally it was in 2009 he resigned from his job and accepted God’s call, though he did not know where his support was coming from. He then started sharing God’s Word and slowly began a weekly gathering. When God led him, he came and joined Master’s College of Theology to train himself for ministry and completed his studies in March this year.
During his studies he suffered ill health several times, Typhoid twice besides financial struggles. But he testifies that God had helped him in all his difficulties. Indeed he fought a good fight. Now he plans on going back to his family and continue with the small gathering he started which now has twelve families. He says there are 3500 people in the village of Kongra. He requests prayer for him and his family and the ministry that he will be involved in from now on.
A Story of a Dream that becomes Reality
February 29th, 2016
“Pursue your dreams and silence your fears.”
Not a Story, but True; Not a Dream, but Reality.
Srinu Pulasari: Our children’s home boy becomes a medical Doctor.
Srinu comes from a fishing community of one of the backward villages of the Srikakulam district. The fishermen in India always work hard to make their ends meet, and their lives are always in danger. Srinu’s parents desired to give him good education and send him to College but neither their financial nor living conditions had helped in any way. It was then Srinu was brought to our children home in 2003 through some known people and a Pastor. He was admitted in VI grade in our School.
While studying IX, Srinu came to the office along with the care-taker and expressed his desire to become a medical doctor. He promised that he would take his studies seriously, and pursue after that dream and said I know God will for sure help me. After completing X grade (high school in India), Srinu reconfirmed his desire to become a medical doctor. He then pursued his next two years in the same line and completed his XII with an A grade.
He was not successful in obtaining medical seat in 2010 but requested for a long term (one year coaching). Believing God will do a work on his behalf we were able to put him for an year of special coaching which had prepared him to appear at his medical entrance exam in 2010-11. He was selected andadmitted into GSL medical College at Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh in 2011. He had studied well all five years, kept good grades every semester, and had successfully completed his medical degree in Feb 2016. He will soon be joining the same college for a year of residency, after which he desires to practice.
In his letter to the Director on Feb 18, 2016, he said, “I am so thankful to God for giving me a dream when I did not have one. I am so thankful to my director and care-takers of Vision Nationals for trusting me by providing long-term coaching for one year, and your constant encouragement and support, without whose help I would have remaind as Srinu and not Dr.”
While practicing as Doctor, Srinu says, “I also have a burden to care and help freely the aged and physically challenged people.”
We are so thankful for the family that had financially supported his studies faithfully and enquired about him from time to time.