Malankara World Journal
Malankara World Journal

Volume 2 No. 53 February 9, 2012

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Table of Contents
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1. Editor's Note

2. Bible Readings for This Sunday (Feb 12)

The Bible readings for Saturday evening, Sunday morning and the Holy Qurbana Service, specified in the lectionary of the Holy Church is given.

3. Sermons for This Sunday (Feb 12)

This Sunday is celebrated as Aneede Sunday, the day we remember all the departed faithful in the church. Continuing the theme from last Sunday, when we remembered the Departed Clergy in the church, bible readings focus on the second coming of Christ and being ready to receive Christ whenever he returns. Over 20 sermons, bible commentaries, Gospel analyses and exegetical notes are given to understand and meditate on the scripture specified for this Sunday.

4. Sermon of the Week
Sermon for Sunday For all the Departed Faithful by Rev. Fr. V. V. Paulose

Death is the only reality on earth. We may be pretending that we are not concerned about death but really we should. Let science and technology invent the techniques to circumvent death. Till then, we should not ambush the reality of death and its beauty, fairness, light, justice, and reward in eternity. ...

5. Inspiration for Today

I am ... the bright and morning Star. I am the light of the world.

6. Featured: Our Greatest Call - Loving and Adoring God

Yes, Jesus wants our obedience. He wants to see us actively serving Him. He wants us to follow the Truth and shun false teachings. He wants us to remain dedicated to Him even in the face of persecution. However, upholding the Truth cannot replace our love for Him. ...

7. Book Excerpt: With Christ In the School of Prayer - Lesson 23: Obedience - The Path to Power in Prayer

'I chose you,' the Master says, 'and appointed you that ye should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide;' and then He adds, to the end 'that whatsoever ye,' the fruit-bearing ones, 'shall ask of the Father in my name, He may give it you.' This is nothing but the fuller expression of what He had spoken in the words, 'If ye abide in me.'.. Entire consecration to the fulfillment of our calling is the condition of effectual prayer, is the key to the unlimited blessings of Christ's wonderful prayer-promises. ...

8. Five Things You Do Not Know About Prayer

We know a lot about prayer. We know it's of faith and we know we ought to do more of it and do it better. It might be helpful to address some of the things we do not know about prayer. ...

9. Seeing God's work in your life

God is building you, too. It's called "sanctification" and He's doing it in you every day as He makes you more and more like Him. So if you struggle with sin, don't let it get you down. Just imagine a big orange sign over your head that says, "God at work"! ...

10. Saint Paul's Tuesday Evening Prayer Fellowship

Instructions on how to join this weekly fellowship on Tuesdays at 7 PM ET.

11. Family: How to be a Winning Husband

Just like it's hard for sports players to stay in the game after they've gotten hurt, it's challenging to keep working on your marriage after your wife hurts you. You may feel like giving up hope of a better marriage when your wife injures you. But if you 'play hurt' like sports heroes do, you'll see God reward your faithfulness by bringing winning results out of your pain. Here's how you can develop a winning marriage by being a husband who stays in the game with God. ...

12. The Month of Love

I learned something I thought I already knew - diamonds aren't a girl's best friend. Her husband is, if he even shows a rhinestone's-worth of interest in her. ... what all of them really want is a husband that makes an effort to understand them and speak their language, whatever it is, without being told. ...

13. Health: Egg whites - Another Miracle Remedy?

Egg whites are used as first aid for burns. First run cold water on the burnt surface to remove the heat. Then cover the part with egg whites. The burned area gets regenerated thanks to the collagen in the egg whites, a placenta full of vitamins. ...

14. Recipe: Mango Cobbler Bars

15. Humor: Funny (Dumb) Laws

16. About Malankara World

Editor's Note
This Sunday is the second Sunday after the Nineveh Lent. Last week, the Holy Church remembered all the departed clergy. This Sunday, we will remember all the departed faithful. Next Sunday is the Sunday before the Great Lent. (The Great Lent starts on Sunday (Feb 19) after Sunset.

Malankara World has special programming during the Great Lent in addition to the regular features in the Journal. A special supplement of the Journal will be published on Saturday, Feb 11. The theme of the issue is "How to Overcome the Storms in Your Life." We all go through trials and tribulations in life. What spiritual resources are there to guide us during that time is the focus. We will have similar focused editions during the lent. We invite your comments and feedback.

Enjoy the last week before the Great Lent.

This Sunday in Church
Bible Readings for This Sunday (Feb 12)
Sermons for This Sunday (Feb 12)
This Sunday is celebrated as Aneede Sunday, the day we remember all the departed faithful in the church. Continuing the theme from last Sunday, when we remembered the Departed Clergy in the church, bible readings focus on the second coming of Christ and being ready to receive Christ whenever he returns. Over 20 sermons, bible commentaries, Gospel analyses and exegetical notes are given to understand and meditate on the scripture specified for this Sunday.

Please read them here:

Sermons, Bible Commentaries and Bible Analyses for Aneede Sunday

http://www.Malankaraworld.com/Library/Sermons/Sermon-of-the-week_departed-faithful.htm

More Sermons

Sermon of the Week

Sermon for Aneede Sunday – Sunday For all the Departed Faithful.

by Rev. Fr. V. V. Paulose, Malankara World Board Member

[Editor's Note: This week, we are starting a new feature - Sermon of the Week. This will supplement the collection of sermon resources for the next Sunday church services in Malankara World. We thank Paulose achen, our Board Member, for contributing to this feature.]

Gospel - St. Luke 12: 38-45)

"Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning."
(St. Luke 12:35)

Life after - The truth.

"I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live even after dying." (John 11:25)

The life beyond death is guaranteed for those who are in Jesus. So be ready with fruits of holy spirit –"love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control." (Galatians 5:22) That is the oil for burning the lamps of our life towards eternity, our onward journey.

Death is the only reality on earth. We may be pretending that we are not concerned about death but really we should. Let science and technology invent the techniques to circumvent death. Till then, we should not ambush the reality of death and its beauty, fairness, light, justice, and reward in eternity. Otherwise, our soul will miss the grand finale of our final journey towards heaven with Jesus, his angels and our beloved ones. Death is actually the journey and departure from this earth towards heaven. It is just like a home sickness on this earth. If we have the clear conscience we could foresee our death and experience the presence of Jesus with his angels near our death bed and even the onlookers can see the angelic royal bright journey of the soul.

We are made of 5 elements of earth that are destructible. But the soul of each human being is given by God as immortal. Actually, death is a separation of the immortality and mortality. "And the dust returns to the ground where it came from, and the spirit go backs to God who gave it." (Ecclesiastes 12:7) Those who contemplated and meditated on their own death is the best soul on earth to live the most vibrant life for others and Christ. So the best bet on this earth is to hold the hands of Jesus and live in him as he said, "Love one another." Before she died Mother Teresa of Calcutta said, "Pray for me that I may not loosen my grip on the hands of Jesus even under the guise of ministering to the poor." Her words are insightful here, for we live "loosening our grip on the hands of Jesus," we have lost everything and fear comes as a constant reminder of death.

Christians tame death in the midst of all the sufferings and injustice of this world by believing and exclaiming: "Thank God, we shall not live here always." "Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning." (Luke 12:35) They are longing for the world beyond as an alternate reality; an unseen world as real visible world around us, where life begins again and fairness reigns.

Cuthbert’s Cave is in Northumberland in UK. In 651, a shepherd boy Cuthbert used this cave as a shelter for the night as he watched over his sheep. One night he saw a stream of light piercing the darkness and choirs of the heavenly host coming down on earth and taking with them a soul of great brightness. The next morning Cuthbert learned that Aiden, the saintly Bishop at Lindisfarne, had died at the exact hour he had his astonishing vision. Immediately Cuthbert left his shepherd duties and set out for the monastery at Melrose where he offered himself for training for Christian ministry.

This experience of taking bright soul should be a reality of all Christians who die in Jesus. This is not different from Mar Baseliose Bava of Kothamangalam when a large gathering circled Bava at the time of his death on September 29, 1685 (Kanni 19) inside the Marthoman Cheria Pally. He told the onlookers, "You will see my departure on the cross in front of the church." When he breathed his last, a bright light encircled the cross in front of the church and stood still for a while and faded - exactly at the time the soul departed from the body.

All our great fathers have died in peace and joined their ancestors. "When Jacob had finished this charge to the sons, he drew his feet into the bed, breathed his last, and joined his ancestors in death." (Genesis 49:33) We should also follow them by living a Christian life and fulfilling our mission of love to get the reward arranged for us in eternity. That "No eye has seen no ear has heard and no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him - but God has revealed it to us by his spirit." (1 Corinthian 2:9, 10) Daniel says, "You will rest, and then at the end of the days, you will rise again to receive the inheritance set aside for you." (Daniel 12:13) The closing chapter in the bible concludes, "Blessed are those who die in the Lord from now on. Yes, says the spirit, they are blessed indeed, for they will rest from their hard work; for their good deeds follow them." (Revelation 14:13)

This Week's Features

Inspiration for Today
I am ... the bright and morning Star.

There shall come a star out of Jacob.

The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. -- Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, turn, my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of Bethel.

Watchman, what of the night? The watchman said, The morning cometh, and also the night: if ye will enquire, enquire ye: return, come.

I am the light of the world. -- I will give him the morning star.

Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. Watch ye therefore: ... lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.

REV. 22:16. Num. 24:17. Rom. 13:12. -Song 2:17. Isa. 25:11,12. John 8:12. -Rev. 2:28. Mark 13:33,37.

Featured: Our Greatest Call - Loving and Adoring God

by Dr. Michael Youssef

[Editor's Note: February 14 is known as St. Valentine's Day. It is the day for lovers. We, Christians, know a lot about love. God is Love. God so loved the the world that he has sent his only begotten son to save us. He wants our love. Are you loving God?]

The church in Ephesus had many good qualities, yet they were lacking in one significant area: their love for Jesus Christ. They actively served Him. They taught biblical Truth. They refused to give in to the permissive culture around them. They endured hardships in the name of Christ. They were busy, committed workers for the kingdom.

Jesus commends them for their hard labor and endurance: "I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary" (Revelation 2:2, 3).

Yet, in their sincere efforts to serve Christ, they forgot to spend time loving and adoring Him. They overlooked their prayer time with Him. They no longer worshiped God wholeheartedly. They were so distracted and bogged down by the work of God, they neglected their relationship with Him. Jesus warns them: "Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love" (Revelation 2:4).

Yes, Jesus wants our obedience. He wants to see us actively serving Him. He wants us to follow the Truth and shun false teachings. He wants us to remain dedicated to Him even in the face of persecution. However, upholding the Truth cannot replace our love for Him.

Throughout the Bible we read of God's love for us—and He wants us to return that love with the same fervor and intensity. When the Pharisees asked Jesus what was the greatest commandment, Jesus replied, "‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment" (Matthew 22:37, 38).

Believing the right things and doing the right things are vital components of our Christian faith—we must continue walking in the Truth. But loving God must be at the root of everything.

How often do you stop to adore Jesus? Do you wait for Sunday worship service because you're just too busy during the week? Do you neglect spending time reading His love letter to humanity because you're consumed with projects and commitments? Are you allowing the busyness of the work of God to supplant your relationship with Him?

If you have let your relationship with Christ fade, follow His words to the Ephesians: "Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God" (Revelation 2:5, 7).

If you have ceased to love Him like you did when you first accepted Him as Savior, recalling the time when you were overwhelmed by the love of Christ for you. Recall the time when you were joyous over the forgiveness you received for your sins. Recall how you wanted to spend all of your time adoring and worshiping and thanking Him.

Then identify whatever is robbing you of your ability to love Jesus with all your heart. Reverse your course and return to that time when loving God was your primary focus. Recapture the time when you loved being in the presence of the Lord Jesus. Recapture the time when your love for Jesus occupied your thoughts, your desires, and your decisions.

Pray for the Lord's help to remain in a state of love and adoration for Him. Pray that others will see your continuous love for Christ and they will turn their attention to Him.

"To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices." - Mark 12:33

Source: Leading The Way with Dr. Michael Youssef

Book: 'With Christ In the School of Prayer' by Andrew Murray

Lesson 23: Obedience - The Path to Power in Prayer
[Editor's Note: Here is this week's lesson from the book, 'With Christ in the School of Prayer' by Andrew Murray. This book is a very important reference book on intercessional prayer, something Orthodox Church believes in greatly. Murray skillfully describes the role of the Holy Spirit within the church and exhorts Christians to use the blessings God has given us. This book is a guide to living a life as a temple of the Holy Spirit. If you have missed the earlier lessons, please read them in Malankara World.]

"Ye did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that ye should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide: that whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, He may give it you." - John xv. 16.

"The fervent effectual prayer of a righteous man availeth much." - James. v. 16.

The promise of the Father's giving whatsoever we ask is here once again renewed, in such a connection as to show us to whom it is that such wonderful influence in the council chamber of the Most High is to be granted. 'I chose you,' the Master says, 'and appointed you that ye should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide;' and then He adds, to the end 'that whatsoever ye,' the fruit-bearing ones, 'shall ask of the Father in my name, He may give it you.' This is nothing but the fuller expression of what He had spoken in the words, 'If ye abide in me.' He had spoken of the object of this abiding as the bearing 'fruit,' 'more fruit,' 'much fruit;' in this was God to be glorified, and the mark of discipleship seen. No wonder that He now adds, that where the reality of the abiding is seen in fruit abounding and abiding, this would be the qualification for praying so as to obtain what we ask. Entire consecration to the fulfillment of our calling is the condition of effectual prayer, is the key to the unlimited blessings of Christ's wonderful prayer-promises.

There are Christians who fear that such a statement is at variance with the doctrine of free grace. But surely not of free grace rightly understood, nor with so many express statements of God's blessed word. Take the words of St. John (1 John iii. 22): 'Let us love in deed and truth; hereby shall we assure our heart before Him. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do the things that are pleasing in His sight.'' Or take the oft-quoted words of James: 'The fervent effectual prayer of a righteous man availeth much;' that is, of a man of whom, according to the definition of the Holy Spirit, it can be said, 'He that doeth righteousness, is righteous even as He is righteous.' Mark the spirit of so many of the Psalms, with their confident appeal to the integrity and righteousness of the supplicant. In Ps. xviii, David says: 'The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands hath He recompensed me. . . . I was upright before Him, and I kept myself from mine iniquity: therefore hath the Lord recompensed me according to my righteousness.' (Ps. xviii. 20-26. See also Ps. vii. 3-5, xv. 1, 2, xviii. 3, 6, xxvi. 1-6, cxix. 121, 153.) If we carefully consider such utterances in the light of the New Testament, we shall find them in perfect harmony with the explicit teaching of the Saviour's parting words: 'If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love;' 'Ye are my friends if ye do what I command you.' The word is indeed meant literally: 'I appointed you that ye should go and bear fruit, that,' then, 'whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, He may give it you.'

Let us seek to enter into the spirit of what the Saviour here teaches us. ... Continue reading the lesson in Malankara World.
http://www.Malankaraworld.com/Library/Prayers/Murray/Murray_23.htm

Previous Lessons are archived here:

http://www.Malankaraworld.com/Library/Prayers/Murray/Default.htm
Five Things You Do Not Know About Prayer

by Dr. Joe McKeever

To be sure, we know a lot about prayer. We know it's of faith--addressing a God whom we cannot see and are unable to prove that He's even there, much less listening to the likes of us--and we know we ought to do more of it and do it better.

But, it occurs to me, it might be helpful to address some of the things we do not know about prayer.

See if you find any of this encouraging.

1. We do not know how to pray as we should.

That's Romans 8:26.

"Likewise, the Spirit also helps us in our weaknesses. For we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered."

At those times when my prayers seem pitifully small and weak, it helps to remember that even the great apostle--arguably the greatest Christian ever--put into words my own helplessness: "We do not know how to pray as we ought."

Man, is that ever right!

This does not stop us from praying. It only assures us that our perfectionism--a killer in most endeavors--does not apply here. Prayer cannot be done perfectly in this life. So, we do what we can, pray as well as we're able, and leave it to the Father to sort it out.

2. We do not know what God is doing in answer to our prayers at any given moment.

Nothing is so much about faith as praying. Not only are we addressing a Deity whom we cannot see or prove, in most cases we never know whether our prayers were even answered or not. And yet, we keep praying. Talk about faith!

You pray for the President of the United States, for a missionary on the other side of the globe, and for your child who heads off to school this morning. In no case will you be there to see if and how your prayers are answered. The president gets a sudden inspiration and makes a wise decision, the missionary is protected from harm while walking through a dangerous neighborhood, and your child figures something out the teacher has been trying to get across. Your prayers were answered. The only problem is.... Continue reading in Malankara World.

Seeing God's work in your life

by Dr. Jack Graham

I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification. - Romans 6:19

When I consider the work that God does, I like to think about it in terms of Him being in the construction business. That's because from the beginning of the Bible to the very end, God is always at work building something.

There's His creative work in Genesis chapter 1, when He created the heavens and the earth. He then made man in His own image and created him after His own likeness. Then there was the building of the ark when Noah was led by God and given building plans for the formation of that ship that delivered them from of God's judgment. And then later on there was the building of the tabernacle, and then the temple.

Then, when Jesus came to this earth, what was His profession? He was a carpenter! And He made things physically with His hands and, beyond that, said, "I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18).

And you know something? God is building you, too. It's called "sanctification" and He's doing it in you every day as He makes you more and more like Him. So if you struggle with sin, don't let it get you down. Just imagine a big orange sign over your head that says, "God at work"!

AS A CHRISTIAN, YOU SPEND YOUR ENTIRE LIFE AS GOD'S CONSTRUCTION PROJECT, BEING MADE MORE LIKE HIM. SO DON'T LET YOUR STRUGGLES GET YOU DOWN. YOU'RE A WORK IN PROGRESS!

Source: Powerpoint Devotional

Saint Paul's Tuesday Evening Prayer Fellowship
Saint Paul's Fellowship conducts a prayer fellowship every Tuesday at 7 PM ET (US). Everyone is invited.
 
Here is how to take part:

Dial 1-605 - 781-1000.
After the welcome message when asked for the access number, enter 362788# (You need to enter the # sign at the end.)
Then, after confirmation, you can press 1 to enter into the prayer meeting.
 
You can read an old testament or new testament passage for 5 minutes (if time permits). Quomo, intercessional prayer to St. Mary, etc. are the other prayers allowed in the fellowship. The fellowship is under the leadership of Rev. Fr. Jose Daniel Paitel, Philadelphia.

Family: How to be a Winning Husband

by Whitney Hopler

Just like it's hard for sports players to stay in the game after they've gotten hurt, it's challenging to keep working on your marriage after your wife hurts you. You may feel like giving up hope of a better marriage when your wife injures you. But if you "play hurt" like sports heroes do, you'll see God reward your faithfulness by bringing winning results out of your pain.

Here's how you can develop a winning marriage by being a husband who stays in the game with God:

Realize that no wound, no matter how bad, needs to be fatal to your marriage. Your marriage can survive any type of wound your wife may give you (from rejecting your sexual advances in private to making disrespectful comments about you in public) if you trust God to help you persevere and respond faithfully to each challenge.

Pray for the guts to love your wife like Jesus Christ does. Decide to make Jesus your role model for how to love your wife, and make yourself accountable to Jesus for all you do in your role as a husband. Ask God to help you lead in such a way that it will be a joy and not a chore for your wife to submit to how you set the pace in the marriage, to love your wife in such a way that she won't doubt your devotion to her, and to sacrifice in such a way that your wife sees Jesus in you when you give up selfish desires to pursue her best interests.

Move from a performance-based to faith-based relationship. Stop expecting that your wife must perform better in what she says and does in order for your marriage to get better. God will help you improve your marriage regardless of how your wife performs in her marriage role. When you shift your focus away from your wife's performance and toward seeking God through your marriage, God will empower you to sustain anything you may go through. Pray for the strength you need to overcome your selfish impulses and love your wife as a man rather than as an immature boy. Recognize that doing so is a noble cause because it will bring God glory when people observe how you follow Him in your marriage. Also, when you put less pressure on your wife to live up to unrealistic expectations (such as by accepting her body's natural aging process instead of hoping that she'll always look like she did when you married her), you'll motivate her to love you more out of gratitude for the love you're showing her.

Fight your real enemy. Recognize that your wife is not your enemy; she's on your same team. Your real enemy is Satan. Fight against evil daily by fleeing from the temptations to act selfishly in your marriage and praying for God's will to be done in your relationship with your wife. Obey God when He calls you to do something that's hard to do (like forgiving your wife after she's hurt you), reminding yourself that God will give you the strength to do so if you just choose faithfulness over selfishness. Decide that you want victory in your marriage more than you want vindication for your injuries.

Enlist the help of others who care about you and your marriage. Find some guy friends who you can trust to encourage you, support you, and hold you accountable in your quest to build a winning marriage. Meet with them regularly and talk honestly and openly with them about how you're doing as a husband. Listen to them when they remind you that marriage isn't about your personal happiness; it's about holiness. Follow any wise suggestions they make about how to strengthen your character and your marriage. Ask an older couple whose marriage you admire to tell you how they've built a great relationship with each other. Visit a marriage counselor to work through serious issues in your marriage.

Nourish your wife emotionally. Care for your wife's emotions at least as much as you care for your own. Discover what your wife is passionate about, and support her efforts to pursue her passions. Ask your wife to answer these questions for you: "Do you feel the depth of my love? If not, how can I help you feel it?" and "Do you feel beautiful in my eyes? If not, how can I communicate that better?".

Learn how to resolve marital conflict wisely. Set ground rules for how to resolve conflicts in your marriage with love and respect. Be willing to discuss difficult issues and work out solutions to challenging problems, no matter what.

Be a spiritual leader. Do all you can to be the spiritual leader that God has called you to be in your marriage, revolving your whole life around your relationship with Jesus and relying on the Holy Spirit working through you to live faithfully. Pray for your wife often, but also be sure to spend time regularly praying with your wife. When you and your wife connect to God together, God will use that time to draw you both closer to Him and each other.

Cherish your relationship with your wife more than your own sexual satisfaction. Focus on honoring your wife and working to pursue sexual intimacy with her rather than responding to a disappointing sex life by looking for satisfaction elsewhere. Pray for the help you need to stay away from pornography and set boundaries with other women to help prevent an affair from starting. Invest your energy into improving your sexual relationship with your wife.

Source: Adapted from Playing Hurt: A Guy's Strategy for a Winning Marriage, copyright 2011 by Brian Goins. Published by Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, Mich., www.kregel.com. Whitney Hopler is a freelance writer and editor

You also may be interested in the following articles in Malankara World:

Why I Stayed in Marriage: A Wife's Focus on God Saves Her Marriage
I wanted out. My marriage was over. My husband was rarely home. When he was, he was working, de-stressing from his job by playing on the computer, or sleeping off jet-lag and long days of meetings. There didn't seem to be any benefit to being married.

Communication and The Family
Right up there with money and in-laws, communication is a major problem in many marriages. Everyone talks but no one listens. Everyone talks but it is at the top of their lungs. Or even worse, no one talks.

The Rhythm Of Dance: What Trinity Teaches Us How to Live in Joy and Harmony
In the early church, one of the most powerful images used for the Trinity was the image of a dance of mutual indwelling. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit live in an eternal, joyful, vibrant dance of love and honor, rhythm and harmony, grace and beauty, giving and receiving.

The Month of Love

by Shawn McEvoy

Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church - a love marked by giving, not getting. - Ephesians 5:25

For once in my marriage, I really did something right.

My wife's name is Valerie - Val for short - so she's always held Valentine's Day in even higher esteem than most women. Not only that, but her birthday is March 15, so she's always believed that February 14 though March 15 = "The Month of Love" = it's all about her for one-twelfth of the year.

One year, I decided to agree. Each morning for 31 days when she woke up, there was a small hand-made red envelope (amazing what useful skills one can learn watching children's programming) stuck on some wall of our house. Written in sparkly marker (chicks dig the sparklies) on the outside of the envelope was one of her top character qualities. Inside the envelope was a Bible memory verse related to that quality. Embedded in the memory verse was a clue to where a small hidden gift could be found in or around our home.

I just thought this could be a nice little way to tell her I love her. Boy was I short-sighted. I could have bought her the Taj Mahal and she wouldn't have appreciated it more, been more thoroughly impressed. "He went to Jared"? No way. He went to PBS and Ben Franklin. But already Val is considering how to pass this story down to our grandchildren. She says I will never top myself. And she was saying these things before she even knew about the surprise at the end when all the envelopes could be arranged so that the first letter of each character quality would spell out the grand prize: that she had her choice of a new wardrobe, upgraded wedding ring, or vacation, any of which would be shopped for together, 'cause she's big on that. Of course, this was back when she was working, so we had money in the bank. Even so, she never took me up on the grand prize. I can't say I wasn't a little bit disappointed, but she was definitely exercising the wisdom of foresight. And anyway, to her, the biggest gift had already been received.

Valerie thinks this took me ages to dream up and hours to prepare, but it took me about 10 minutes per day, plus a weekly trip to the store to stock up on a few minor gifts. But the outcome net me - if not crowns in Heaven - at least major returns in this life. Anytime a group of gals gathers together and asks each other, "What the best gift you've ever received," I get bragged upon. Several times during the Month of Love itself I was told to take an evening to myself and go see a movie. And I learned something I thought I already knew - diamonds aren't a girl's best friend. Her husband is, if he even shows a rhinestone's-worth of interest in her.

Not every wife speaks the same "Love Language." I know some who truly would have preferred a simple one-time big purchase. Some would just be satisfied with a husband who washed dishes and dusted shelves. But this I can be fairly sure in saying about wives: what all of them really want is a husband that makes an effort to understand them and speak their language, whatever it is, without being told. Yeah, I know, and all one has to do to make millions in the majors is hit a curveball. But unlike the major leagues, in marriage, most of the time, simply making the effort is appreciated.

Further Reading: Hebrews 13:4

Source: Crosswalk.com Devotional. Shawn McEvoy is Crosswalk.com Managing Editor.

Health Tip: Egg whites - Another Miracle Remedy?
Burns

A young man sprinkling his lawn and bushes with pesticides wanted to check the contents of the barrel to see how much pesticide remained in it. He raised the cover and lit his lighter; the vapors inflamed and engulfed him. He jumped from his truck, screaming. His neighbor came out of her house with a dozen eggs, yelling: "bring me some eggs!" She broke them, separating the whites from the yolks. The neighbor woman helped her to apply the whites on the young man's face. When the ambulance arrived and when the EMTs saw the young man, they asked who had done this. Everyone pointed to the lady in charge. They congratulated her and said: "You have saved his face." By the end of the summer, the young man brought the lady a bouquet of roses to thank her. His face was like a baby's skin.

Healing Miracle for Burns:

Keep in mind this treatment of burns is included in teaching beginner fireman. First aid consists of spraying cold water on the affected area until the heat is reduced and stops burning the layers of skin. Then, spread egg whites on the affected are.

One woman burned a large part of her hand with boiling water. In spite of the pain, she ran cold faucet water on her hand, separated 2 egg white from the yolks, beat them slightly and dipped her hand in the solution. The whites then dried and formed a protective layer.

She later learned that the egg white is a natural collagen and continued during at least one hour to apply layer upon layer of beaten egg white. By afternoon she no longer felt any pain and the next day there was hardly a trace of the burn. 10 days later, no trace was left at all and her skin had regained its normal color. The burned area was totally regenerated thanks to the collagen in the egg whites, a placenta full of vitamins.

Read more health tips in Malankara World Health Section

Cafe - Recipe: Mango Cobbler Bars
Ingredients:

1.5 cups butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar, divided
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
4 cups dried mangoes 930 ounce bag if you are purchasing dried mango)
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
pinch nutmeg

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 deg F (175 deg C)

In a large bowl, cream together butter and 1/2 cup sugar. Blend in 3 cups flour. Press half of the mixture into the bottom of a 13-by-9 inch baking dish.

Place dried mangoes in a bowl and cover with boiled hot water. Let stand for 10 minutes, or until softened. Drain and cut into bite size pieces.

In a medium bowl, stir together mango, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour, cinnamon and nutmeg until well combined.

Pour the mango mixture over the shortbread in the pan. Sprinkle with the remaining shortbread mixture. Press down lightly.

Bake for 1 hour, or until the topping is golden brown.

Let cool for 15 minutes in the pan before cutting into bars.

Yield: 10-12 servings.

[Editor's Note: You can substitute fresh mangoes for the dried and skip the boiling part. Make sure that the skin of the mango is removed. With the dried mangoes, you can enjoy this year-round.]

More Recipes/ Cooking Tips at Malankara World Cafe

Humor: Funny (Dumb) Laws
According to 'dumblaws.com', Arizona has some laws that are real winners:

-Any misdemeanor committed while wearing a red mask is considered a felony.

-Donkeys cannot sleep in bathtubs.

-When being attacked by a criminal or burglar, you may only protect yourself with the same weapon that the other person possesses.

-It is unlawful to refuse a person a glass of water.

In Glendale, Arizona:

-Cars may not be driven in reverse.

In Mohave County, Arizona:

-A decree declares that anyone caught stealing soap must wash himself with it until it is all used up.

In Tombstone, Arizona:

-It is illegal for men and women over the age of 18 to have less than one missing tooth visible when smiling.

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