Wednesday, January 31, 2007



shane and dylan

why is it so hard to receive?

We’d rather collapse a couple of times before receiving
help from others.
Something in us keeps us resisting love.
We’d rather be making it through life on our own, than
depend on alms from others.
I remember a friend and a fellow missionary Zsuzsa,
who used to work as a specialist on Oriental Carpets.
With her hands she could fix the small nuts and get the
patterns back in order. She was a professional
Then, suddenly, her husband died and she herself became
sick with arthritis. It crippled her body up to a point when she
could not move herself.
We met her in a hospital in Budapest.
She feared and respected God, but didn’t know Jesus
She was bitter towards God.
One of our girls shared the Gospel with her and her life
changed. She became a living epistle.
In the time of her trials she often told me,” I’m learning
to receive”.
Then, against everybody’s efforts to stop her, she became
a missionary and moved to Baku, Azerbaijan.
Her little, poor apartment became a center of action.
She was just lying on the bed and fellowshipping with Jesus.
It looked so unproductive, but hundreds of people found
comfort and encouragement in prayer and fellowship
by her bed side.
Then she became blind.
She said,”I’m learning to receive”.
Now she depended on others even for her reading.
She was so rich.
Then she died.
Her grave site in Baku is one of the most
beautiful places in the world.

Righteousness is a gift from God.
It cannot be achieved, merited nor paid for.
It simply means that the man who believes in Jesus,
becomes in Him
all that God requires a man to be. (Rm.4:3)

Self-righteousness is an oxymoron.
It’s a lie that promotes pride and always hinders us from
It is the kind of goodness that looks very acceptable, but
in reality it separates people from God.
It’s sinful goodness.

So often even believers try to impress God with their goodness
in stead of pleasing him through faith.
Only by receiving from him can we become good men
in the true meaning of the word.

we grow

everybody grows

Everybody grows.
You don’t need to choose it.
But you can choose, how you will grow.
You can grow to become an adult baby, or become an adult man.
In I Corinthians 13:11 Paul said that he had chosen
to put away childish things.
Unlike many people He was willing to change his thinking,
speaking and understanding.
Children are very self-centered in their thinking.
Everything spins around their needs and interests.
A child needs to be taught unselfishness.
It will not develop naturally in him.
Ignorance characterizes a child’s way of understanding.
Even though ignorance sometimes protects him from a lot of evil,
it is dangerous.
Voluntary ignorance doesn’t lead to good long term solutions.
It limits our lives more and more to ourselves.
Growing up means to come out from our own world.
Spiritual maturity leads us to put away all manipulation
and games that we have learned to play with our words.
It challenges us to “renounce the hidden things of shame” II Cor.4:2,
and encourages us to grow in our speaking.
Growth means sometimes pain, but that pain carries a promise
with it: He is changing me.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

where could we go?

no need to escape

“Whoever believes will not act hastily.” Isaiah 28:16
He who believes is victorious.
He doesn’t need to escape.
He stands in the victory that was won on Calvary.

Easy solutions, superficial attitudes and fast pace in life
are often just ways to escape the bigger questions.
Small talk is a way to escape the real issues.
It’s always easier to talk about something else.

Sometimes we escape by being passive and
dull in hearing.
Somehow we talk ourselves into thinking that
if we choose to hear less, we will be less responsible.

Many disciples left Jesus, being offended with
His straight forward teaching. Jesus said to his best men,
”Do you also want to go away?” John 6:67
Peter knew that he didn’t have a choice.
He had followed Jesus too long.
He said, “Where could we go?”
He knew that avoiding problems, pain and truth
would always lead him further away from Jesus.
He didn’t want to go away..

Monday, January 29, 2007

time touches eternity now

time takes care

Time is a good servant , but a merciless master.
I think one of the most used excuses is to say:
I have no time.
You don’t have time, because time has conquered you.
Some people get exhausted by selling vacuum cleaners,
others run after a ball,that is full of air and get angry.
Everyone has time.
In John 11 Jesus was seemingly late.
Lazarus died . Jesus didn’t heal him.
When the disciples were anxious about Jesus’ plans to
go and see him, he responded by saying:
Are there not twelve hours in the day? ( John11:9)
He clearly demonstrated that he is the Lord of time.
Don’t you think that someone who claims to be the
beginning and the end, would always have time for
everything that he considers to be important.
If we don’t use time, time will consume us in it’s
intensive program.
People say: Time takes care of things…
That is a sad truth.
Some have rejected Christ many times in their life
because they didn’t have time.
Then , finally, time takes care of them.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

mornings are full of hope

blessings and promises

Two things were important for Jacob, blessings and promises.
He knew that he could not afford to live without a blessing.
He made no mistake about it.
He was ready to give everything for understanding. (Proverbs 4:7)
God led him step by step to a blessing.
Jesus encouraged his disciples to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. Mt.10:16
The word Phronimos (wise) refers to practical wisdom, prudence.
The Holy Spirit can never lead us to lie.
Otherwise He would have to go against His own character.
Even thought lying is one of the most acceptable sins by men,
it can never be a part of God’s plan.
Titus 1:2 God cannot lie.
Lying is always too low for God’s character.
Man, however, is a master in lying.
Any man can come up with a lie, tell it to himself and believe it
and defend it to others fanatically.
Lying never leads to a blessing.
A spiritual man is called to be prudent in his dealings with life situations, but God never leads him to be cunning.

Friday, January 26, 2007

also there was no more sea. Rev.21:1

forgetting the things that were forgiven

In Leviticus 16 the Scapegoat was sent to the wilderness,
to the uninhabited land. Nobody was there to take care of
this animal. It was too far.
This is what the word forgiveness means.
“Aphiemi ” means to send away.
God has made this very clear.
When he forgives, he doesn’t just forget our sin, but
He removes it.
Three pictures of God’s forgiveness describe a place that is
beyond man’s reach.
Psalm 103:12 says that He removes our transgressions as far
as the east is from the west. This is beyond all the dimensions
known to man.
Micah 7:19 promises that our sins are cast into the depths of the sea.
In Isaiah 44:22 the Lord says that he has blotted out our sin
like a cloud.
One of the greatest celebrations in heaven is the absence of sin.
The Finnish translation of I Cor.13:5 reads:
Love doesn’t remember the evil it has suffered.

Hrant Dink's funeral

learning to forgive fast

Ephesians 4:32 tells us to forgive one another, even as God in Christ forgave us.
Verse 26 encourages to be fast with our forgiveness. Don't let the sun go down on your wrath.
Be fast to forgive, for every unforgiving moment of our lives steals our spiritual blessings and the authority of our spiritual influence.
We don't plan on forgiving later.
We forgive without demanding a reason for it.
Nobody has to deserve to be forgiven.
Any other attitude will end up with an aggression that will be expressed sooner or later.
Forgiveness might not look like a good deal, but it definitely is God's way of dealing with problems.
Fast forgiveness cuts the wings from evil.
After all,only God can forgive sins. Mark 2:7
Our forgiveness is actually just our agreement with that what God has done.
Outside of God's overwhelming love none of us could forgive anyone,
not even ourselves.

fishing together on the Galata bridge

Thursday, January 25, 2007

fishing together

As I stroll on the shores of the Bosphorus I see a lot
of people fishing.
Day and night, all bridges and piers are filled with
groups of jolly Istanbulivites who have created a whole
culture around this activity.
They have chosen to have a good time while performing
a difficult task. Just like us.
Despite the potential dangers and frustrations,we experience,
waiting for our fish to bite in Turkey, we have chosen to
enjoy this call.
Without the support of the team none of us would fish
for a long time.
Together we have chosen to love the Turkish people
I don’t think God has an alternative for that.
Unconditional love removes even the greatest obstacles
and disarms people.
Unconditional love is contagious.
It cannot be stopped by man.