Malankara World Journal
Malankara World Journal

Volume 2 No. 79 May 31, 2012

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Rev. Fr. Zachariah Varghese, Austin, Texas at his ordination on May 26, 2012
Rev. Fr. Zachariah Varghese with HE Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop and Patriarchal Vicar of Malankara Archdiocese of Syrian Orthodox Church in North America, after his ordination on May 26, 2012. Rev. Fr. Zachariah Varghese is a member of the Malankara World Board.
Table of Contents
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1. Editor's Note

2. Bible Readings for This Sunday

Golden Friday (Friday after Pentecost) (June 1)

First Sunday after Pentecost (June 3)

3. Sermons for This Sunday

Sermons for the First Sunday After Pentecost
http://www.Malankaraworld.com/Library/Sermons/Sermon-of-the-week_1st-sunday-after-pentecost.htm

4. Inspiration for Today

Jehovah‑shalom: (The Lord send peace.)

5. Featured: I Want to be somebody!

The question rather becomes How can I make a lasting difference in my world? So that when I depart, I will leave behind a legacy of faithfulness, I'll leave people who are better off for my having been here. ...

6. Taste And See That The Lord Is Good

As a Christian you have a right to the life of Christ Jesus. Because of what Jesus did on the cross you can exchange the devils nature for the nature of God. Jesus said he came for you to have life and have it more abundantly. ...

7. Potholes

You're going along smoothly, and all of a sudden something turns your world upside down. A loved one gets a cancer diagnosis. You lose your job. Your best friend moves halfway across the country. Someone dies too young. You're making your way down the road just fine and then you crash into a pothole that almost derails you. We all know the feeling all too well. ...

8. You Cannot Have the Peace of God Until You First Have Peace with God

This peace doesn't come from what or who we are, but from what God has done - how He has justified us in response to our faith. A wonderful byproduct of this reality is a deep inner peace that floods our soul. ...

9. The Habit of Enjoying Adversity

We have to develop godly habits to express what God's grace has done in us. It is not just a question of being saved from hell, but of being saved so that "the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body." And it is adversity that makes us exhibit His life in our mortal flesh. ...

10. Poem: A Single Person Can Change Generations

11. Health Tip: Not Food But Fertilizer

The average woman living in East Asia eats about 10 times the quantity of soy foods as the average woman in the United States. Yet East Asian women have lower rates of hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer than women in the United States. ...

12. Recipe: Oatmeal Walnut Cookies

13. Family: Couples Argue 3 Times per Month Over Finances

Disagreement over Finances is one of the major problems that lead to break up of marriages. A recent survey reported by Harvard Business Review confirms the role of financial stress in marriage. ...

14. Rev. Fr. Zacharia Varghese. AXIOS!

Malankara World Congratulates Rev. Fr. Zachariah Varghese (Zach achen) on his ordination as a priest by HE Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop and Patriarchal Vicar of Malankara Archdiocese of Syrian Orthodox Church in North America on March 26, 2012 at Dallas, TX. Zach achen is a member of Malankara World Board. He also enjoys the distinction of being the first American born person raised to the priesthood of the Malankara Syriac Orthodox Church. ...

15. Humor: What Causes Arthritis?

16. About Malankara World

Editor's Note
As many of you are aware of, we created history last week in North America. A North American born person was ordained as a priest for the first time in our church by Theethose thirumeni in Dallas, Texas. The new priest is also familiar to many of you. Rev. Fr. Zach Varghese is a member of Malankara World Board and had contributed articles and prayers to MW. Zach achen is also a personal friend. He had been a mentor to my daughter Dr. Seena Mathew, who is a resident of Austin and attends the church there with her husband James. We need more Zach achens to lead and guide our young generation in North America. We extend our congratulations to achen and family and pray for them as achen takes up this important ministry of serving God.

Last Monday was Memorial Day in the US. It is the day we remembered all those who died so that we can enjoy the freedom and liberty. Last Sunday, the Eastern Orthodox Christians remembered those who suffered and gave their lives for the truth of Orthodoxy. This was also the anniversary of the First Ecumenical Council. We mention the three councils our Holy Church recognizes in our Thubden during every qurbana. But many of us do not know that the bishops and the doctors of the church who met in those ecumenical councils did so at tremendous personal risk. Eusebius of Caesarea, a bishop and a historian during the time of Constantine the Great, provides us one of the most detailed account of the First Ecumenical Council in Nicaea (325 A.D.). He tells us that many of the bishops who came to the council were lame and blind from the tortures they had suffered during the years of persecution. These were the "wounded warriors" of our Church. There was also fierce disagreements on faith within Christian ranks at that time. St. Paul had foretold these controversies in Acts 20:

"Fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking perverse things…"

At the time of the First Ecumenical Council, there was a major divide among the Church Fathers - those agreeing with Arius and those who didn't. Although Constantine stayed neutral in this controversy, he was greatly influenced politically by those who supported Arius and, until the Second Ecumenical Council in Constantinople (381 A.D.), it often looked as though Arianism would win out over Orthodoxy as the dominant theological view across the Byzantine Empire.

The courageous Orthodox Fathers who stood firmly for their faith suffered the consequences. Constantine's sons favored the Arian group. They deposed Orthodox bishops "who wouldn't compromise". Later, Emperor Julian the Apostate persecuted Orthodox mercilessly. For a time, all seemed lost for those who stood for the truth of Orthodox Christianity.

The Second Ecumenical Council was called in 381 A.D. by the Emperor Theodosius. Our Orthodox fathers stood their ground. As a result, the Second Great Council sealed and confirmed the proceedings of the First Council which gave us the creed known as the Nicene Creed and added to it the rest of the Creed regarding the Holy Spirit, the Church, Baptism and Eternal Life. From this time on, Arianism began a steep decline.

So, next time when you hear the long list of our church fathers in the Fifth Thubden, please reflect on what they had to go through to preserve the faith as we know today.

Summer also means vacations, graduations, vacation bible school and family conferences. In fact, I am writing this on a flight from Cleveland to Phoenix to attend the graduation ceremony of my son who will be graduating from the medical college on Friday. Although this is a joyous occasion to us, we are humbled by the mercy of God. My son is living to graduate this week only because of the grace and mercy of God who protected him like an eagle who protects her children under the wing, as described in the bible. Six months ago, Madhu, my son, was travelling at night from a hospital in Athens, Ohio to a hospital in Marietta, Ohio where he was doing the medical rotation. The highway passed through the rural West Virginia, more like a forest. He was on the highway going at about 75 mph when suddenly a deer ran in front of the car. He tried to swerve the car to avoid hitting the deer, lost control; the car went into a tail spin; hit the concrete median of the highway and spun around and hit the side wall and then overturned. All this happened in a split second. The car was totaled; all the air bags were deployed. The amazing thing is that Madhu walked away from it with only minor bruises! That night we were on our knees thanking God for His grace and mercy.

Experience such as this tells us that our lives can change in a split second. We may not get another opportunity to reconcile with God and with our fellow human beings. We are here not because of our merits but because of God's grace. So, while we celebrate the graduations and birthdays, etc. please take a moment to reflect on who made those celebrations possible. Give credit where credit is due. Jesus told us that not a hair on our body will fall without the knowledge and approval of God.

I am reminded of a devotional song first brought to my attention by Rev. Fr. Stephen while serving as vicar at St. Mary's church, Detroit and St. Basil's, Ohio (achen is currently serving our Koothattukulam church):

"Nee ente sangethavum; nee ente Kottayum..." God, you are my refuge and my fort.

Yes, for those who believe and trusts in God, He is the fort. He is a loving god who answers our prayers and forgive our trespasses (when we forgive those who trespass against us). Like the father of the prodigal son, God is waiting for us to go back to him with a contrite heart after repenting our sins. He is outside the door of our heart, knocking. Will we open the door and receive him singing,

"Nee ente prana nathan; nee en daivum." (You are my savior; You are My God.)

This is our faith. This is the faith for which our forefathers suffered persecution in the early days of Christianity. This is the faith that prompted Abraham to sacrifice his only son on command from god without question. It is the love that made Jesus Christ to die for us on the cross so that we can be redeemed from eternal damnation.

Dr. Jacob Mathew
Malankara World

This Sunday in Church
Bible Readings for This Sunday
Sermons for This Sunday
We have greatly expanded our Sermon Resources. The sermon collection now includes general and classical sermons. This will give a broader appeal to the Gospel Reading for the week. We also added bible commentaries for the bible reading to facilitate study and meditation. Please check it out.

Sermons for the First Sunday After Pentecost
http://www.Malankaraworld.com/Library/Sermons/Sermon-of-the-week_1st-sunday-after-pentecost.htm

More Sermons

This Week's Features

Inspiration for Today
Jehovah‑shalom: (The Lord send peace.)

Behold, a son shall be born to thee, who shall be a man of rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies round about: for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quietness unto Israel in his days.

Behold, a greater than Solomon is here. -- Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. -- My people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places; when it shall hail, coming down on the forest ; and the city shall be low in a low place.

He is our peace. -- This man shall be the peace when the Assyrian shall come into our land.

These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings.

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you.

JUDG. 6:24.; I Chr. 22:9.; Matt. 12:42.; Isa. 9:6.; Isa. 32:18,19.
Eph. 2:14.; Mic. 5:5.; Rev. 17:14.; John 14:27.

Featured: I Want to be somebody!

by Dr. Joe McKeever

The other day, while we were awaiting our planes in Naples, a friend said to me, "You know, Joe, people spend the first half of their lives trying to be a success, and the second-half trying to become significant."

He added, "You know what I mean, trying to decide what kind of record I'll leave behind. My legacy. How will I be remembered?"

I've thought about that ever since.

What I said to him at the moment was, "One of our favorite SBC pastors, Dr. Frank Pollard, was once asked how he wanted to be remembered after his death. He stunned the questioner into silence with his answer. 'I don't want to be remembered. I'm just the messenger.'"

Frank's word set the gold standard for those of us in the Lord's work.

The issue remains, however, and deserves some thought: What does it mean to become significant in this world? and how can I attain it?

So, the title of this piece is a misnomer. We're not actually focusing on how "we" can become "somebody." In Creation, God made us somebody: "a little lower than the angels," is how the Psalmist put it (Ps. 8:5). In redemption, God showed us the true value He places on us: "God so loved (us) that He gave His only begotten Son...." (John 3:16).

The question rather becomes How can I make a lasting difference in my world? So that when I depart, I will leave behind a legacy of faithfulness, I'll leave people who are better off for my having been here.

Let's make a list of ways to make a significant difference in this world.

But first....

But first, let's set down some "Do Nots" which need to be mentioned.

1) Do not try to do everything.

You cannot fill all the needs around you. You cannot be all things to all people. You cannot and shouldn't try. Find the thing God has uniquely prepared you to do.

When I was in seminary, a prominent leader said, "Wherever there is a need is the mission field, and the nearest believer is the missionary." That sounded spiritual and it brought forth a chorus of 'amens.' But it's wrong. Very wrong. God never intends that we respond to every need around us, otherwise we would be nervous wrecks, dropping the task at hand to run to another one we just spotted.

What counts is what God has shown us as our call, a work for which He has gifted us.

2) Do not underestimate your ability to do something big.

"What can I do? I'm only one person." Ever say that? It's actually a joke. We're all "one persons." No one is two people. Anything that gets done will be done by one person here, one there, and one over there.

You are one. Get started. But do not allow yourself the luxury of falling for this deception from the wicked one, a lie that has paralyzed good people from action for too long.

You can do all things (that He wants you to do) through Christ who strengthens you.

3) Do not dismiss a task or ministry or role because it's too small.

Take it and make it something special.

A deacon who served as president of the American Bankers Association once told me how he rose from obscurity to that lofty position. "I was named to chair a lowly committee in the ABA," he said, "one that had never done anything. But I saw something going on in banking that connected with our committee, worked up a presentation, and went all over the country speaking on it." In time, he was so well-known that electing him to national leadership was the obvious thing to do.

According to Matthew 13:31-32, Jesus loves to use small beginnings to achieve great results. If you make yourself small enough, He might use you. Or me.

4) Do not keep measuring your impact.

You are not your own judge, not your own record keeper. Keep your eyes on the Lord, on submitting yourself to others, on doing the job at hand.

Depression has many fathers, but nothing engenders this soul-sickness like the feeling that your work has meant nothing, that no fruit has come from your efforts. (The irony, of course, is that if you are working for the wrong "Master," this may be the case. But when we serve the living God in the place where He placed us, no matter how insignificant, we are successes.)

5) Do not fail to encourage your co-workers and colleagues.

You are competing with none of them. Your job is to be part of the answer, not another of the problems. Since most of your colleagues will be focusing on themselves, you will be one of the few who devote yourself to encouraging each of them.

This point was almost an after-thought. But in our attempts to leave a lasting legacy, it's easy to narrow our focus and lose all thoughts of the beloved friends and family around us. None of us are one-man shows. We are part of a family of believers, as well as the human family. Let us be encouragers.

6) Do not keep your head down so long that you might miss opportunities to do more that your work has created.

Keep the big picture in mind. What else is the Lord showing you that could be done?

7) Do not ignore the Spirit within you. Listen to your heart.

Here then is my list of ways of making a significant difference in the lives of those around you, so you will be missed when you are called away.

Indirect Actions:

By working in the background, more or less anonymously, you can have a vital role in far more areas than by direct involvement. These areas come to mind:

--A ministry of giving anonymously.

You'd need a go-between for this, someone (a banker?) who would channel your gifts to the recipient and keep it confidential. I know people who have a working relationship with the manager of a men's clothing store. From time to time, the manager will call a struggling preacher and say, "Someone has made arrangements for you to have a new suit. Come in when you can and let me show you what we have." The preacher gets a brand-new outfit where price was no object, and never knows the name of his benefactor. One result is that he is grateful to everyone he meets, since that person might be the perpetrator!

--A ministry of praying.

Prayer goes into the biggest board rooms and seats of power in the world. There is no place off limits to its effectiveness. The only limitation on your prayers is your faith. And nothing tells the story on our faith like our prayers.

We sometimes speak of various totalitarian governments as being closed to the Lord's work. But none are closed to the Gospel or to prayer. They are closed only to traditional ways of sending missionaries.

If we believe God, and if we care for people, we will pray.

--A ministry of writing.

Today, with the internet, you can get addresses for movie stars, all kinds of celebrities and leaders, as well as the lesser knowns of our world. What if you began a ministry of writing them words of encouragement. Let me emphasize, I do not mean writing them over the internet. Hand write the letters. Make them personal. Pour yourself into them. Pray for the Spirit's direction in how to do this.

The internet is a mixed blessing. People who get lots of e-mail tire of all those "greeting cards" and other attachments which take time to open, and which clutter up mailboxes. But as fewer and fewer hand-written letters are sent each year, receiving one becomes a real occasion.

Direct Actions:

Here are some things that come to mind.....

1) Serve the servants.

Two mornings ago, after a massive rainstorm that destroyed the cardboard boxes of old magazines and other throwaways I'd placed on the curb behind my house, I went out and thanked the garbagemen for their excellent work. Then, I handed each one a twenty-dollar bill.

Ministers are servants. Missionaries are servants. Public servants can be found in every community. What if you devoted yourself to making their lives better?

You know the household of Stephanas, that is the firstfruits of Achaia, and that they have devoted themselves to the ministry of the saints... (I Corinthians 16:15).

2) Find the overlooked in your world and see what the Lord wishes you to do.

The kids in the trailer park. The families there. The blighted neighborhoods in your town. The school there. The failing school in your town. The latch-key kids. Those needing tutoring. The hungry, the unemployed, the troubled.

Is there an area in your town where the residents are so poor or so "something" (foreign, isolated, ousted) that they will not come to established churches? Perhaps you should begin a ministry in that trailer park or apartment building.

A friend whose college son was injured in a hazing incident spent weeks in the ICU waiting room at a local hospital. When the son died and he returned home to Tennessee, the distraught father began devoting himself to ministry in the ICUs of his local hospitals. He said, "I never knew there was this kind of suffering in these places."

What about the homeless, the foreign visitors, the discouraged?

3) Tell some troubled person about Jesus and help him/her to become His disciple.

I'm reading the current Stephen King best-seller, "11/22/1963," at the moment. The premise is simple enough, even if a little bizarre. A schoolteacher named Jake Epping finds a way to go back to 1958 to "fix" the past. In order to address some severe inequities he knew of, he got a handgun and returned to the past to (ahem) "bump off" some key troublemakers. One of those was Lee Harvey Oswald, the assassinator of JFK, hence the title of the book.

Now, I'm only 1/3 of the way through this 800-page book, but I find myself in a constant conversation with Jake. "Hey, schoolteacher--you don't have to kill the guy. Convert him. Let God change his heart!"

But this is how we do things, isn't it? To get a bad guy out of the way, kill him.

God's way is to kill the old man through the cross of Jesus. (As I type this, tomorrow is Easter. There is no better reminder of God's provision for life-changing remedies. The problem is, as the Apostle Paul said in I Corinthians, the natural man finds this to be foolishness. After all, can anyone imagine Stephen King writing a book on a fellow returning to a time in the past in order to tell a bad guy about Jesus in order to change history? Sounds good to me.)

There is no end to this article, I've decided. After all, the list of works one may leave behind in order to a) make life better for others and b) make himself missed when he departs is infinite. So, rather than belabor the point, I'll stop here.

For those who are obedient followers of the Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit has gifted you spiritually to do certain things, and--how good is this!--He indwells you to point those things out. Further, He even strengthens you as you begin to respond to His prompting to carry it out.

No excuses, now. No procrastination. Just obedience.

Taste And See That The Lord Is Good

by Frank Broom

It is time for the children of God to be partakers of his divine nature. When Adam sinned he disconnected from God and connected to Satan. He exchanged his nature of being righteous in exchange for the nature of sin. And everyone born after him was born with that sin nature. But, as soon as Adam sinned God had a plan to get things back. Just as you were born in sin, God came up with a plan for man to be born again. In your sin nature you are connected to Satan and the things of that nature- the curse, sin, sickness, depression, poverty, fear. In your righteous nature you are connected to God and all the things of that nature- the blessing, health, prosperity, peace, faith. So as a Christian you have a right to the life of Christ Jesus. Because of what Jesus did on the cross you can exchange the devils nature for the nature of God. Jesus said he came for you to have life and have it more abundantly.

Jesus said, "I am the vine, ye are the branches." You don't have a healthy, prosperous vine and poor, sick branches. In the sin nature, you are to pay the wages of sin, death (Romans 6:23). But, in your righteous nature you reap the wages of righteousness, life (Romans 5:17).

All the things of Adam's nature got passed down so likewise all the things of Jesus are passed down to those with that nature (those that are in Christ). So his peace, faith, joy, health, wisdom are passed down when you are connected (the vine and branches). Jesus came to bring man God's way of life. And one of the biggest jobs is renewing you mind to the things of God. For by the renewing of your mind you are transformed from the things of the world into the things of God (Romans 12:2).

Do you know you have a right to be healed, delivered, prosperous, blessed. That's right. I said you have a right to those things because the blood of Jesus paid for them. You have a right to receive it free. For example, you take a friend out to eat and you decide to pay for the buffet and they have all kinds of food laid out. And you both come back to the table and all they have is one piece of food, what's the first thing you say? That's all you want. Why, because you want them to partake of all that's laid out for them. As a matter of fact, the more they take the better you feel. So imagine how Jesus feel, he died for you to be healed and you put up with sickness, he died for you to be prosperous and you put with lack, he died for you to be free and you keep putting up with that bondage. Healing, deliverance, prosperity, and blessing are all on the buffet, receive.

So, how do you receive from God's buffet first you have to believe God's word. Second you have to get your mouth involved "A man shall eat good by the fruit of his mouth" (Proverbs 13:2). So, you are going to have to start speaking "By whose stripes I am healed" (2Peter 2:24), "My God shall supply all my need according to his riches in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19), "Christ hath redeemed me from the curse of the law" (Galatians 3:13). That's why the word says, "Let the redeemed of the Lord say so" (Psalm 107:2).

God invites you to taste and see that He is good (Psalm 34:8). What did you do to be a sinner, nothing. What do you do to be righteous, nothing, but receive Jesus as your Lord and savior. Because it's all about what Jesus did. How do you receive Jesus as your Lord and Saviour? You believe God raised Jesus from the dead and confess him as your Lord and Saviour (Romans 10:9,10). Come and take your first taste and see that God is good.

Prayer: Dear Father I believe Jesus died for my sins on the cross and that you raised him from the dead and I confess now that Jesus is my Lord and Saviour. Amen

Potholes

Anna Kuta, Crosswalk.com Editor

"As I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you."
Joshua 1:5b

I was driving home late the other night, rolling down the winding, two-lane country road I've been down so many thousands of times I could probably drive it in my sleep. I had the radio turned up and one hand on the wheel, and then — CLUNK! Before I knew what was happening, my front right tire thudded through a gigantic pothole that came out of nowhere. The whole car jolted and I just knew a noise like that had to have done some damage.

"Oh, please don't let me have a flat tire," I said out loud. Cringing, I pulled over at the next road and worked up the courage to get out and look … and to my surprise, my tire was still intact. I stared at it for a few minutes, waiting until I was sufficiently assured that it wasn't going to deflate in front of my eyes, and then I breathed a sigh of relief and continued my drive, albeit a good bit slower and more cautious this time.

Isn't life just like that? You're going along smoothly, and all of a sudden something turns your world upside down. A loved one gets a cancer diagnosis. You lose your job. Your best friend moves halfway across the country. Someone dies too young. You're making your way down the road just fine and then you crash into a pothole that almost derails you. We all know the feeling all too well.

I was having one of those weeks where every single thing seemed to be going wrong, and then I heard a sermon illustration that stuck with me. It was the story of a gravel lane leading to a farm and a huge pothole that appeared after a rainstorm. Before anyone had a chance to fill it in, though, a bird laid her eggs in the pothole. She hatched her chicks there and stayed with them until they left the nest. All the locals warned their families and friends to avoid the pothole, and everyone drove slowly by to see for themselves the little birds thriving in a place that no one would expect.

How often do we look at the potholes in our lives and curse them? Yet, from a rocky, ugly place, little birds sang and took flight.

God did not promise that our Christian walk would be easy, but he did promise he would never leave us. His presence, His love and His peace are the only things that can fill in the holes in our lives. He smoothes out the roughest of roads with His strength and comfort. And above all, He grants us grace sufficient to make it through whatever may come. The Lord will never leave our side.

If not for the pothole on that gravel farm lane, the travelers would never have been able to witness a small miracle taking place there. If not for the pothole on my drive home the other night, I probably wouldn't have slowed down and I might have had an even worse encounter around the next bend – with a herd of deer in the middle of the road.

In the midst of a week where I thought my world might crash down, I cried out to God to help me through, and it was only when I had nothing left to rely on but Him that I felt His presence more clearly than I had in a long time – and it was exactly what my heart had been yearning for. "Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you," as James 4:8 says. Only God can fill our potholes, and he fills them with Himself. May we never miss the little blessings hidden along a bumpy road.

Further Reading

Deuteronomy 31:5-6
Psalm 46:1
Psalm 55:22
Psalm 73:23-24
Isaiah 43:2

Source: Crosswalk.com - The Devotional. Anna Kuta is Editor of Crosswalk.com

You Cannot Have the Peace of God Until You First Have Peace with God

by Greg Laurie

Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
- Philippians 4:6–7

One of the first things I remember about the day I put my faith in Christ was the sense of peace filling my heart. It was as though someone had lifted a heavy burden from me.

It wasn't until later, when I read the Bible, that I learned about God's promise of peace to every believer. He has given it to us as a gift.

This peace, however, doesn't come from what or who we are, but from what God has done - how He has justified us in response to our faith. A wonderful byproduct of this reality is a deep inner peace that floods our soul.

You can't just live as you please

But we can't have this beautiful effect without the beginning cause. If we are fighting with God - resisting His plan and purpose for our lives - then we won't experience this supernatural peace.

I think many people would like to have the desirable results and benefits of the Christian life without having to pay the price. In other words, they would like to know that they are forgiven and going to heaven when they die, but they still want to live as they please. They don't want to put their complete faith and trust in Jesus.

That sort of attitude just won't fly. We can't have the pleasing, life-transforming privileges of God's peace without first meeting God's requirements. Scripture tells us through Jesus Christ, "God reconciled everything to himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and on earth by means of Christ's blood on the cross" (Colossians 1:20 NLT).

The only way

The only way we will experience the peace of God that passes all human understanding is through the blood of the cross, the blood that Jesus shed.

You cannot have the peace of God until you first have peace with God.

Copyright ©2012 by Harvest Ministries. All Rights Reserved.

The Habit of Enjoying Adversity

by Oswald Chambers

". . . that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body." - 2 Corinthians 4:10

We have to develop godly habits to express what God's grace has done in us. It is not just a question of being saved from hell, but of being saved so that "the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body." And it is adversity that makes us exhibit His life in our mortal flesh. Is my life exhibiting the essence of the sweetness of the Son of God, or just the basic irritation of "myself" that I would have apart from Him? The only thing that will enable me to enjoy adversity is the acute sense of eagerness of allowing the life of the Son of God to evidence itself in me. No matter how difficult something may be, I must say, "Lord, I am delighted to obey You in this." Instantly, the Son of God will move to the forefront of my life, and will manifest in my body that which glorifies Him.

You must not debate. The moment you obey the light of God, His Son shines through you in that very adversity; but if you debate with God, you grieve His Spirit (see Ephesians 4:30). You must keep yourself in the proper condition to allow the life of the Son of God to be manifested in you, and you cannot keep yourself fit if you give way to self-pity.

Our circumstances are the means God uses to exhibit just how wonderfully perfect and extraordinarily pure His Son is. Discovering a new way of manifesting the Son of God should make our heart beat with renewed excitement. It is one thing to choose adversity, and quite another to enter into adversity through the orchestrating of our circumstances by God's sovereignty. And if God puts you into adversity, He is adequately sufficient to "supply all your need." (Philippians 4:19)

Keep your soul properly conditioned to manifest the life of the Son of God. Never live on your memories of past experiences, but let the Word of God always be living and active in you.

Source: My Utmost for His Highest (The Golden Book of Oswald Chambers)

Poem: A Single Person Can Change Generations

by Aditya Thakur

A thousand words go unheard sometimes
While a single syllable creates a sensation.

A million screams are not listened
while a single tear can melt hearts of millions.

A thousand talks may be useless
while a simple silence can make hearts meet.

Such a strange world it is
here a million efforts can't do good
but a single person can change generations.

Source: An Anthology of Thoughts by Aditya Thakur adityasphere.blogspot.in

Editor's Note: Aditya is a 14 year old boy from UP, India. I know him through his dad who is a fellow graduate of IIT. Aditya expresses his interest in painting and writing Poems, Stories and Articles in his blog. Amazing what a 14 year old can do!

Health Tip: Not Food But Fertilizer

by Al Sears, MD

The world's biggest and most powerful agricultural companies are still trying to convince you that their soy products are healthy… but there's a problem.

It's not traditional soy.

You see, Asian farmers used to consider soy to be a type of fertilizer, not a food. They recognized that most of what's in a soybean is indigestible to people.

They only started eating soy after discovering that natural fermentation processes make soy okay to eat. That's why – to this day – Asian cultures ferment their soybeans in a traditional way to make soy foods like natto, miso, tempeh, edamame and tofu.

It's made by a simple process that Asian cultures have been following for thousands of years.

But this is a far cry from the soy foods made from the genetically modified, heavily processed ingredients that are in nearly every product you can buy at the market.

Instead of "soak, steam, ferment," most food manufacturers follow an industrial crushing process called cracking that breaks down the raw, genetically modified bean to thin flakes. Then the flakes are "defatted" by percolating them like coffee in a petroleum-based hexane solvent to extract the soy oil.

The remains of the flakes are toasted and ground into meal.

For soy flour, the oil then goes through a process of cleaning, bleaching, degumming and deodorizing – all to remove the harmful solvents and soy's horrible stench.

The sludge that forms in the oil during storage used to be considered a waste product. Now you know it as soy lecithin.

In other words, the part of the soy that's left over as garbage after the petroleum processing and bleaching is the heart-destroying oil that makes up the trans fats in every kind of junk food you can think of.

Sound like something you want to eat?

When processed like that, soy products have huge amounts of natural toxins that block food digestion, and also absorption of essential vitamins and minerals.

But when they're fermented in the traditional way, they retain powerful lignans that may help reduce your risk of cancer.

In fact, the average woman living in East Asia eats about 10 times the quantity of soy foods as the average woman in the United States. Yet East Asian women have lower rates of hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer than women in the United States.

There's no sure way to know why this is true, but the speculation is that it's because of what they eat. And they do eat a lot of traditionally made soy products.

You can make traditional soy foods, too. It's easy to do. All it takes is three simple steps: soak, steam, ferment. That's it.

For example, to make natto, you simply:

1.Soak the soybeans in water, until the beans stop swelling.
2.Steam them so the beans become soft but don't lose their skin.
3.Lay the cooked beans on cooked rice straw.
4.Tie the package shut.
5.Leave it out and let a little heat and oxygen ferment the soy naturally.

The Chinese have been doing this for thousands of years. And they discovered that mashing up the soft soybeans and mixing them with certain minerals would make a sort of curd… now known as tofu.

The secret to making traditional soy in this way so you can get its cancer-protective benefits has been handed down for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). In fact, TCM is full of natural remedies and herbal health enhancers that have been time-tested and passed from generation to generation – from as far back as 3500 B.C.

Editor's Note: TCM is to Chinese as Ayurveda to Indians.

Read more health tips in Malankara World Health Section

Recipe: Oatmeal Walnut Cookies
There must be as many varieties of oatmeal cookies as there are cooks because we keep finding new recipes everyday.

Ingredients:

2 cups barley flour or whole wheat flour
2 cups raw rolled oats
3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup date sugar
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup pure maple syrup or honey
1 Tbs vanilla
1/2 cup water

Directions:

Mix dry ingredients together in one bowl and blend liquid ingredients in another bowl.

Combine liquid and dry ingredients and mix.

Spray cookie sheets with PAM or olive oil.

Drop cookie dough by spoonful onto cookie sheets and shape into desired form.

Bake at 350F for 15 to 20 minutes.

Cool on rack.

Keep kids away or else these delicious cookies will disappear fast.

Note: If you are diabetic or trying to control weight, this is not for you.

More Recipes/ Cooking Tips at Malankara World Cafe

Family: Couples Argue 3 Times per Month Over Finances
Disagreement over Finances is one of the major problems that lead to break up of marriages. A recent survey reported by Harvard Business Review confirms the role of financial stress in marriage.

Financial matters trigger an average of 3 arguments per month for married couples, an incidence that rises to 4 per month for those aged 45 to 54, according to a U.S. survey conducted for the American Institute of CPAs by Harris Interactive. The most common source of contention is disagreement over what's a "want" and what's a "need." The next most common issues are unexpected expenses and insufficient savings.

Source: AICPA Survey: Finances Causing Rifts for American Couples

Rev. Fr. Zacharia Varghese. AXIOS!

[Editor's Note: Malankara World Congratulates Rev. Fr. Zachariah Varghese (Zach achen) on his ordination as a priest by HE Mor Theethose Yeldo, Archbishop and Patriarchal Vicar of Malankara Archdiocese of Syrian Orthodox Church in North America on March 26, 2012 at Dallas, TX. Zach achen is a member of Malankara World Board. He also enjoys the distinction of being the first American born person raised to the priesthood of the Malankara Syriac Orthodox Church. Please read on...]

Rev. Dn. Zach, the elder son of Mr.P.C. Varghese Poykkattil, is called to the Holy Priesthood by His Eminence Mor Titus Yeldho Archbishop & Patriarchal Vicar of the Malankara Archdiocese of the Syrian Orthodox Church in North America on May 26th 2012 at his home parish, St. Ignatius Syrian Orthodox Church, Carrollton, Texas.

Rev. Fr. Zacharia Poycattle Varghese, M.D. was born in 1976 in Dallas, Texas. His father, Poycattle C. Varghese, and mother, Alice P. Varghese, were among the founding members of St. Ignatious Malankara Syriac Orthodox Church, Dallas, which has grown to become the largest parish in our Archdiocese. His paternal grandfather, Poycattle V. Zacharia, was trustee, longtime volunteer, and benefactor of St. Thomas Orphanage parish while member of Perumbavoor Bethel Suloko Church. His maternal grandfather, Varghese Chacko Chakkaserril, served as the General Secretary of the Kerala State Pensioner's Board as well as Sunday School teacher at Marth Shmooni Simhassana Church, Peroor, Kottayam, where he remains a pillar. From an early age Dn. Zach displayed an interest in Bible study, Christian service, and science. While in high school he helped found an ecumenical campus ministry which sustained young minds long after his graduation.

In October of 1996 Dn. Zach was ordained as Mzamrono (singer) at St. Ignatious MSOC and became the first native born North American to enter the sub-diaconate of the Malankara Syriac Orthodox Church. He quickly partnered with senior clergy and various leaders to energize youth on a local, regional, and national basis. In consultation he developed conferences, retreats, and Bible programs. As its first working secretary, he was instrumental in creating the constitution for the newly formed Mor Gregorious Malankara Syriac Orthodox Student Association, the predecessor to today's MGSOSA.

Upon receiving a Full Tuition Presidential Scholarship, he attended Austin College in Sherman, Texas, the state's oldest continuously chartered college and renowned for pre-medical studies. Alongside coursework in biology and philosophy, he became a principal of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, helping to resuscitate the group's effective Christian witness. He was also a founding member of Chi Tau Chi, a local Christian fraternity which revolutionized the campus' social atmosphere in award winning fashion. He was specially recognized by the school's Leadership Institute and was asked by campus senior administration to deliver the benedictory prayer for his class's graduation convocation.

While an undergraduate Dn. Zach created a self-styled internship at Kolenchery Medical Mission Hospital in Kerala, where he rotated with prominent attending physicians and gained insight into chaplaincy and community medicine. He also participated in mission programs to Nicaragua and Mexico.

Before starting medical school Dn. Zach had the blessed chance to stay with the monks of St. Augin Monastery in Switzerland for a period of three months. He became even more fascinated with the universal and beautiful nature of the Syriac Orthodox Church. He also developed a deep enjoyment of cultural exploration.

In his first summer as a medical student at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Dn. Zach partook in a medical mission to Nigeria which included evangelistic excursions into the countryside. At the end of his second year, Dn. Zach journeyed back to Kerala and was blessed to marry his life partner Manju, an environmental scientist and clinical data specialist (d/o Aramath & Lillies Thomas, Puthencruz, Kerala), who joined him States' side in September of 2003. Dn. Zach and family served at St. Mary's MSOC, Houston.

Dn. Zach and Manju are blessed with a baby girl named Rachel Alice, born a year before psychiatric residency training commenced at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Austin Campus. During this time period, Dn. Zach received a scholarship to begin studies in public health and led the current MGSOSA's first all-Archdiocesan wide youth specific outreach, the web based Ruho.org project.

Now settled in Austin, Texas and part of the founding membership of St. Thomas Malankara Syriac Orthodox Church, Dn. Zach chose to specialize in systemic behavioral health after successfully completing his clinical internship. He is interested specifically in the design of scientific behavioral health programs deployed cooperatively with faith groups. Accordingly, he is appointed Visiting Scholar in the Department of Human Ecology at the University of Texas while expecting to complete an additional master's degree this summer at the UT School of Public Health. He also continues as a research associate with the UT Dell Center for Healthy Living, one of the region's premier behavioral health research institutes.

Dn Zach plans on pursuing formal seminary training while designing outcome focused faith based healthcare initiatives. He desires to reserve plenty of time for ministry. He was ordained as Mshamshono (full deacon) in Austin on March 2010. Currently, he serves as Vice-President of St. Thomas MSO Church, a Sunday School teacher, and as a MGSOSA Southern regional youth adviser, all the while teaching at church gatherings throughout the Archdiocese. Recently, he helped lead an MGSOSA team to perform mission work and public health research in the Dominican Republic. Dn. Zach is also a member of the Board of Malankara World, a global web endeavor seeking to bring Orthodox ministry to the kitchen table.

Source: SOCM Forum May 27, 2012
Humor: What Causes Arthritis?
A man who smelled like a distillery sat next to a priest. The man's tie was stained, his face was plastered with red lipstick, and a half-empty bottle of gin was sticking out of his torn coat pocket. He opened his newspaper and began reading. After a few minutes the disheveled guy turned to the priest and asked,

"Say, Father, what causes arthritis?"

"My son, it's caused by loose living, being with cheap, wicked women, too much alcohol, and contempt for your fellow man."

"Well, I'll be damned," the drunk muttered, returning to his paper.

The priest, thinking about what he had said, nudged the man and apologized.

"I'm very sorry; I didn't mean to come on so strong. How long have you had arthritis?"

"I don't have it, Father. I was just reading here that the Pope does."

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