2012/12/17

Why Are You Celebrating The Birth of Jesus Christ?

Christmas is here again. The shops are full of goodies; sales are going on everywhere; malls are teeming with buyers; gifts are being bought; cards are being exchanged; parties are being planned; carols are being sung; kids are excited; tourism is at its peak; lumberjacks are having a great time cutting down trees, and the first chapters of Matthew and Luke are being read extensively.
As is usual during this time of the year, people are in a jovial mood and merrymaking is at its best. Towns everywhere are painted red as revelers, both young and old, flock to their favorite joints to party, drink and dance the season away. Others use this opportunity to spend some quality time with their families and loved ones. Still, others simply make a lot of money out of it.
Nevertheless, in the midst of all this fanfare, it is good for us to ask ourselves an important question: ‘Why, and what for, am I celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ? Is it because I have received what He came to give me, or am I just celebrating for the fun of it? Has He found a home in my heart, or have other gods been lodging there? Do I walk with Him, or have I been determining my own path? Am I His true follower, or am I just His fan?’
Needless to say, Jesus Christ did not come so that we can have a ball and party till the break of dawn at every end of the year. He came to give us the gift of salvation. Those who have received this gift are the only ones who can truly celebrate His birth because they are the ones who have benefited from His coming. A person may eat, drink, make merry, sing Christmas carols at the top of their voice and receive and give 1001 Christmas wishes, but if they have not received the gift of salvation then in the end all that merrymaking counts for nothing. God will not welcome them into heaven just because they knew how to get their groove on and set the roof on fire with all their singing and dancing. He will welcome only those who got born again.
To understand the foolishness of celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ while not saved and devoted to Him, let us take the example of a sick person who is suffering from a fatal but curable disease. A doctor brings him some medicine but instead of taking it, the sick person simply rejoices that the medicine is there and thanks the doctor for bringing it. As he continues to rejoice, the disease gets the better of him and he dies from it. If he had taken the medicine he would have lived, but since he rejected it, all his celebration is worthless. It cannot save him from his disease and it will not bring him back from the dead. The same is true about our Christmas celebrations. When the party is over and God calls each one of us to account for our time and actions on earth, it will be of no use for us to have celebrated with all our might yet end up being rejected by Him and told off as none of His (see Matthew 7:21-23), because we did not repent and become saved. The Bible says that Jesus Christ came to save us from sinfulness (see Luke 19:10, Luke 5:32 and Titus 2:11-14).
In Luke 13:26-27, Jesus talked about people who will tell Him of how they ate and drank with Him but it will be of no use. He will reject them even though they brushed shoulders with Him. How much less impressive will mere merrymaking in His name be? As the festive spirit fills the air, here are some verses to meditate on:
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” – Luke 19:10
“For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 14:17
Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.” – John 3:3
Image from webclipart.about.com

2012/12/05

I Once Was Blind But Now I See

In October 2011, the story of a blind hairdresser called Salvin Okinda Mandu was featured on one of Kenya’s national broadcasting stations, Citizen TV. Salvin lost her eyesight in 2003 when she was only nine years old.
One morning, she was woken up to go to school as usual, but when she opened her eyes, she could not see anything. She thought that it was still dark and told her brother Movim, “The world has really changed. How come you are telling me to wake up and go to school yet it is dark?” Her father heard this and tested her by throwing a pencil at her, but she could not see it. She told them that she could not see anything in the room. That is when it dawned on them that something was wrong.
Salvin was taken to eye specialists to see whether her eyesight could be restored, but it was of no use. At one time, the doctors operated on her and gave her a new lens, but when her mother sent her to the shop to test whether she could see, Salvin bumped into a window and broke the lens. This caused her left eye to turn white and begin to cause her headaches.
From that time onwards, Salvin’s life changed completely. She now had to get used to life without eyes and had to rely on a guide to find her way around. She was also forced to forget her childhood dream of becoming an astronaut.
However, Salvin did not give up on life. She learnt how to plait hair and began to work alongside her mother who is also a skilled hairdresser. When she was interviewed by Judy Kosgei, the presenter of Citizen TV’s Your Story show, one could not help but marvel at how this 17 year old girl had risen above the situation to turn her test into a testimony. She displayed her impeccable hairdressing skills before the camera, inspiring viewers throughout the country.
Now, nine years after the tragic incident, Salvin has a different story to tell. She attended an end-of-year Christian revival meeting held in Kenya’s Kisumu County from 30th December 2011 to 1st January 2012, and was healed of her blindness. She can now see clearly and is a living testimony that Jesus Christ is indeed The Lord Our Healer.
Here are the pictures and videos of the glorious testimony:
Salvin, the blind hairdresser, in their house at the beginning of the Citizen TV interview

Salvin’s mother leads her to the site of the interview


Salvin’s mother helps her to sit down

Salvin narrates her story to Judy Kosgei of Citizen TV

Salvin’s blind eyes. The left eye turned white when the new lens broke inside it

Salvin’s mother, who is now a widow, tells of her grief
An old photograph of Salvin as a child
A receipt from the Kikuyu Eye Hospital
A sheet of paper showing the eye hospital’s opening hours and charges
The blind Salvin feels journalist Judy Kosgei’s hair
Salvin plaits a client’s hair

Judy Kosgei concludes the inspiring interview

Prophet Dr. Edward David Owuor announces that God has promised to heal many diseases, including blind eyes, during the 2011 end-year meeting

The historic revival meeting held at the Moi Stadium in Kisumu
Prophet Dr. Edward David Owuor prays for the blind during the meeting
Many people are touched by God during the meeting

The documentary of Salvin after her healing
Salvin gives the testimony of her healing
Salvin’s neighbour testifies that she was with her in the stadium when Salvin suddenly began to see and identify things

Salvin demonstrates that she can now see by picking a chair, carrying it towards the tent and sitting on it

Salvin demonstrates her healing by imitating a pastor’s movements

A pastor glorifies The Lord God Almighty for the healing

Glory be to the Almighty God! He surely opened Salvin's blind eyes. There is none like Him! May His name continue to be glorified as people from all over the world once again gather in Kisumu for this year’s end-of-year meeting that God has promised to visit in an even more glorious way. (Note: The meeting will also be broadcast live on www.jesusislordradio.info, and many people are always healed and blessed just by listening and believing).