"Grace & Peace" is an e-periodical for spiritual enlightenment,
edification and encouragement.
Issue No.076 September, 2010
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In this issue:-

Believer’s Sufferings

    Life is not a smooth path for most believers. Unexpected turn of events, many disappointments and failures make them wonder “Why?” True, these suffering Christians, when evaluated in the human point of view are very good believers. They are godly, obedient and humble yet they face untold adversities. Why? What are the reasons? Is it because of some secret sins? Or is God angry with them with out any cause? What is God’s plan in allowing His people to go through hardships? It’s good to consider Christian’s suffering and the truth behind it.


    No doubt a believer’s sin and disobedience do result in God’s disciplinary actions. Heb 12: 6—10. But there are many other instances in the Bible where we see righteous people suffer. Joseph, Elijah, Daniel, Paul and many other's afflictions can not be attributed to any failures on their part. We know what all the loss, pain and sufferings Job had to face. His own friends and dear ones could not believe his integrity. The best example is our Lord Jesus Christ Himself who knew no sin, did no sin and in Him there is no sin, yet He was perfected in suffering. Heb 2:9, 10.

    There are plenty of scripture portions that clearly state that God’s people will have to go through difficulties in this world. That is the way God has designed our path on this side of eternity. The Lord Jesus said, “In the world you will have tribulations” Jn 16:33. Paul says “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God”. Act 14:22. He further writes, “We are appointed to this.” 1The 3:3. Peter’s counsel is, not to be surprised at the fiery trials. 1Pet 4:12

    From the above mentioned verses it is very clear, God has not designed smooth pathway for us. We must expect sufferings and be ready for it. What is God’s purpose in it? The word of God reveals many precious truths.

To teach

An important reason is to teach us valuable lessons otherwise we would never learn. It is sufferings that teach us very clearly of our own limitations, inadequacies. It takes away any possibility for pride and self- trust that   the Lord hates so much.   

     Adversity also teaches us of the infinite power and sovereignty of God. We begin to understand that it is God who is on the throne. It is His will that matters ultimately. He wants us to trust Him moment by moment. We can not survive with out the Lord. It may be possible in the midst of a busy schedule, life’s various assignments we may forget our spiritual obligations. Then very softly and tenderly the Lord teaches us that He is our true boss.

To mould & use

      Such knowledge also make us humble, to yield to the Lord prayerfully and thankfully. It is in difficult situations we taste the presence of God very much. Then prayer becomes more personal, serious, and meaningful.

       In the school of adversity our character is being transformed. Our perception of life and others will change. We will be more equipped to sympathize with the brethren who go through similar trials.  Even our words and attitude will be different as we go through difficulties in life. People will enjoy our presence, they will smell ‘the fragrance of Christ’ (2Cor 2:15) as they interact with us, because we share real life’s experience. Even in our silence a testimony will sound forth and our life becomes a blessing as well as a challenge.

       Oh, how wonderful are the results of adversity. No wonder the Psalmist said, it was good that I was afflicted. Of course the scripture reveals much more of the blessings of going through trials. With Paul’s words we will conclude, “Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” 2Cori 4:17


      Beloved, do not be discouraged at the unexpected events in life. The Lord, who is sovereign, leads us in His perfect will. He doesn’t make a mistake, He is faithful. Let us take His word as true and wait for His time. Apostle Peter affirms that these tribulations are not forever. “God of all grace who called us to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” 1Peter 5:10


Out line:-

Suffering for Christ

1. Suffering for righteousness’ sake.    1Peter 3:14

2. Suffering for Godly living.                 2Timothy 2:12

3. Suffering for the Kingdom of God 2Thessalonians 1:3

4. Suffering as a Christian                     1Peter 4:16

5. Suffering for Christ’s sake.               Philippians 1:29

6. Suffering and glory.                           1Peter 5:1

Anecdote: -

Peace Like a River

       H. G. Spafford, a successful businessman in Chicago lost all his possessions in the Great Chicago fire in 1873. A few weeks later, his wife and children were on board the ship ‘Ville de Havre’ to visit France. This ship was rammed by another vessel and sank within tow hours claiming the lives of 226 people. Though his wife survived, his four children were lost in the sea.

       As he was proceeding to Europe in the next ship to join his wife in France, he was shown the spot where the shipwreck happened. Although struck with great grief, Spafford suddenly felt a rush of supernatural peace and comfort as he looked to Christ for strength. With tears he entered the cabin, took a paper and wrote down what came into his mind:

            When peace like a river, attendeth my way,

            When sorrow like sea billows roll

            Whatever my lot thou hast taught me to say

            It is well; it is well with my soul.

This has turned out to be one of the most famous hymns of Christendom.


What is Church?

      'Church' is One of the most misunderstood biblical terms. Right understanding of Church as revealed in the Bible helps us to examine our position with the Church of Christ. Remember, Church is the eternal programme of God and a wrong understanding of it is a great loss for us.

       Church is a gathering of called out people, from the day of Pentecost by the power of the Holy spirit on the basis of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary. They have been saved, separated, sanctified, and regenerated to be the family of God. They follow Christ, learn from Him and any one can notice their Christ-like behaviour.  More

Matters for prayer & praise:- 1

Short term Bible Course

      Sharon Christian Believer’s Assembly Nallasopara near Mumbai is conducting a short term Bible training program from 4 to 23 October 2010. The purpose of this effort is to train and equip the young believers of assemblies in Maharashtra to be useful vessels for the work of the Lord.

Bro. R. S. Mirajkar, Nelson Thomas, Bro. B. D. Balid, Bro. David Joseph and Bro. George Mathew will teach the word of God. For details contact Bro. Amis Lopez +91 9819412021 Email:- contact@alphautm.com

Matters for prayer & praise:- 2


         A conference for the believers in Bihar will be conducted at Patna, under the auspicious of Believers Brethren Assembly Patna from 14th to 17th October 2010. Brother Varghese John, Kerala will speak on ‘discipleship’.

The organizers expect around 300 believers including Children from Bihar.  Pray that this gathering together may be for the spiritual edification of God’s people. For details contact Bro. O. M. Mathew +91 9431459515 Email: - mathewpatna@yahoo.com

Matters for prayer & praise:- 3


     Prayers are requested for the Brethren Believer’s Family Conference to be held in Vishakapatanam, Andhra Pradesh, India from 2011 January 13 to 16 (Thursday to Sunday).  Bro. John Kurian, Kerala Bro. Jerry George, Karnataka and Bro. T. P. Varaprasad Reddy, AP are the main speakers.  The theme of the conference is ‘be a witness in the present situation’.

For details contact: - BRO. T. SHEKAR BABU+91 8008277230;  BRO. A G JACOB +91 9440542858 Email:- agjacobvizag@yahoo.co.in

Worthy Quotes:-


 “The Lord gets his best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction.”

                                                                       ___________ C.H. Spurgeon

 “Suffer in order to know, and toil in order to have.”

                                                                       ___________ Spanish Proverb

 “Adversity reveals genius, prosperity conceals it.”

                                                                      ________________  Horace

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“Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; ...no food...no herd....yet I will rejoice in the Lord...." Habakkuk 3:17-19