Saturday, April 7, 2012

Storyteller

Storyteller - votes so far.

The topic for vote:


Who among us is the best story teller? 
My Answer:The one who gives the most excuse for not doing something.  


Leading: Kripa Varghese.

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Awaiting the resurrection


Today's service at church is dedicated to all those departed souls and I do have few people to remember and pray for - those who could not make it to this day, those who walked ahead of me, and those who sacrificed themselves.  

Friday, April 6, 2012

The view

File:Brooklyn Museum - What Our Lord Saw from the Cross (Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix) - James Tissot.jpg

Today being Good Friday, I am supposed to give a sermon at Church.  The topic I chose is about my best friend Jesus - the prince of the Universe. To be more precise, God willing, I plan to share the view from the cross.

To a certain degree, I am clueless on how to explain this. I submit myself at the feet of the cross and will try (yes -  merely 'try') to share the view from above. I pray for blessings from the Holy Spirit to depict that picture to my fellow parishioners.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

My Best Friend


Today I found a friend,
Who knew everything I felt.
She knew my every weakness,
And the problems I've been dealt.

She understood my wonders,
And listened to my dreams.
She listened to how I felt about life and love,
And knew what it all means.

Not once did she interrupt me,
Or tell me I was wrong.
She understood what I was going through,
And promised she'd stay long

I reached out to this friend
To show her that i care
To pull her close and let her know
How much I need her there

I went to hold her hand
To pull her a bit nearer
And realized that this perfect friend I found
Was nothing but my mirror.


A view from the cross

File:Brooklyn Museum - What Our Lord Saw from the Cross (Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix) - James Tissot.jpg

What our Lord Jesus would have visualized from the cross - by French Painter James Tissot.




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Countdown: 
3 days till Easter
263 days till Christmas 
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Credits: Crucifixion, seen from the Cross by James Tissot, c. 1890

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Talent Competition April 22

Class - Talent competition is around the corner and let's use your Spring Break time to start preparing. Contact me if you need help with preparation - picking a song, story or with elocution. I am willing to work with you and can dedicate time with you. Below is the communication I received.

St. Thomas Orthodox Church, Atlanta
Sunday School Talent Competition Guidelines

SONG, BIBLE STORY, ELOCUTION ON SUNDAY, APRIL 22ND 2012 : 12 NOON

SOLO SONG (Beginners, Primary, Junior, Intermediate, Senior)
1. Any Christian Song
2. Each student can participate either in solo song or group song
3. Max time allowed for solo song is 5 min
4. 1 point should be reduced for the reference material used during the competition.
5. Title name (song name) should be given along with the participant names

GROUP SONG (Beginners, Primary, Junior, Intermediate, Senior)
1. Songs should be selected from the Qurbana Kramum or ceremonial song
2. Each student can participate only in one group
3. A group consists of minimum of 2 participants and a maximum of 4 participants
4. Max time allowed for group song is 5 min
5. 1 point should be reduced for the reference material used during the competition.
6. Title name (song name) should be given along with the participant names

BIBLE STORY (Beginners, Primary, Junior, Intermediate)
1. Each Student can participate either in Bible story or Elocution
2. Max of 3 minutes is allowed for each contestant.
3. No reference material is allowed during the competition
4. Topic of the story should be given along with the participant names

ELOCUTION (Junior, Intermediate, Senior)
1. Max time allowed for the elocution is 5 Min
2. Reference material is permitted; 1 point will be deducted for those using the reference materials.**
3. Elocution Topics:
    Junior : Importance of Prayer in spiritual life
    Intermediate : Purpose of my life – in a Christian perspective
    Senior : Christian witnessing in a pluralistic society*

* Pluralistic society: A society comprised of people from numerous different cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Although some integration and acculturation is only natural, a pluralistic society is one that acknowledges and allows for the cultural diversity of its citizens.

**For 11th Graders, no reference material is permitted.


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One good friend



“Open rebuke is better than hidden love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.” - Proverbs 27: 5-6

 “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born to adversity” - Proverbs 17:17

Real friends touch our hearts and take us to those heights where no one else could take us without any selfish motives and interest. Real friends are thrilled and happy to see us grow and achieve greater glory in life, They refresh us with good thoughts, nourish us with choicest blessings, correct us when we are wrong, prune us from time to time according to our need, understand and accept us with our own weakness and strength and above all, never let us down and turn their faces at times of adversities and uncertainties of our life.

Loyal friends love through difficult times. Faithful friends are a rare treasure - we cannot find them in everyone. Such a true and faithful friend will remain with us at all times as a token of love, energize us with consoling words and presence and then serve us with a spoon of patience and tolerance. If we have one single friend who is real, loyal and faithful, it's better than having a multitude.

Apart from the many friends we have on earth, the greatest friend we have is our friend Jesus.  He is the one who accompanies us always and everywhere. He has no complaints about us, but takes us along with Him and enthuses with amounting energy to go ahead without fear. He can never let us down. He will touch and heal our aching souls with a soothing balm of His Love.

If there is ever such a fan club called 'Jesus Fan Club', I encourage you to join that club because I know how wonderful it is, to be with this friend. Add Jesus to your inner circle as one who is real, loyal and faithful to experience friendship and love.

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Countdown: 
4 days till Easter
264 days till Christmas 
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Monday, April 2, 2012

Starting something new - 5 questions to ask


Some of us love to start something new while few others dread the very thought of deviating from the old norms! Being the kind of person I am, I always enjoy doing new stuff in a new atmosphere – whether it’s travelling down a new road, taking up a new sport, meeting a new person, starting work on something new, cooking a new dish, or even tasting a new fish!

Prior to leaping into the new venture, one must evaluate his/her motive against these 5 essential questions:

1. Am I emotionally/purpose driven?

Emotions can play with us! For instance, when emotionally down, we may feel like quitting. When we are hurt, we may sense a strong pull to prove our innocence. If we allow emotions to rule us, it has the power to ruin our life.

Proverbs 29:11 says, Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end.

Before moving on to the new venture, let's ensure we are driven by purpose and not pushed by emotions.

2. Am I programmed to do this?

God created us in a wonderful way to do something special. Further, He built within us desires and skills to accomplish that work. For instance, a doctor or nurse has an in-built attitude of caring, a teacher has the in-built attitude of sharing knowledge while a carpenter has an in-built attitude of creativity. Each of us, we possess a unique set of abilities and personality.

According to 1 Peter 4:10, "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms."

Before launching into something new, let's make sure we are wired to undertake the new task.

3. Is my past work history aligned with this?

Since God has wired us for a specific purpose, we will have an indelible mark of that purpose all through our work history. You may have changed jobs. You may have been in different work situations. But directly or indirectly, your life’s divine purpose has emerged often in all these.

Moses was destined to be a deliverer. But for many years, it seemed like that wasn't his path. However, the truth is, his life’s purpose emerged at different situations – whether it was his own miraculous deliverance from death as a baby or rescuing a fellow Jews from the pharaoh.

We should evaluate our work history to see glimpses of our divine purpose. Then evaluate our new venture to see the same glimpse.

4. What does my family and close friends say about this?

When sensing the urge to launch out into the unchartered terrain, it is quite natural that most us - especially those of the entrepreneurial kind feel to do this in a hurry since we are overwhelmed with excitement. However there is great benefit in calming down and consulting with our spouse and closest friend about our new venture.

Proverbs 11:14 says, “Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counselors there is safety”.

More than any other, it’s our spouse who knows us – our strengths, our weaknesses, our likes, our nature and many other. Our closest friend is the only other one who knows us better than anyone in our outer circle. An open and honest consultation with our spouse and close friend helps us get a better picture about the feasibility and success factor of our new venture.

5. What is my price tag?

Every endeavor has a price tag associated with it - different price tags for each of our actions. Nothing evolves without a price. This is especially true for a worthwhile task as well. It is easy to jump in. But only those who pay the price can keep swimming upstream!

Here is what Jesus said about this in Luke 14:28-30: “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn't able to finish.”

Cost is not always monetary. It could also mean time, willingness, ability and resources. Make sure we are committed to pay the price, whatever that tag may be.

Finally, may the blessing of the Lord and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit guide us, while we leap into that new venture.


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Countdown: 
6 days till Easter
266 days till Christmas 
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Sunday, April 1, 2012

I see God in you





There’s something different in your eyes
Something honest in the way you speak
Every time you come around me
One look at you and I feel at peace
The angels can’t be very far
I love what I see in your heart

I see God in you
I know that’s not something you go around saying
But I do believe it’s true
I see God in you
I want to say
I finally found my strength in the light that shines in you
That’s what I see
I see God in you

Did you know that you’re the person
Who’s shown me who it is I want to be?
Every time I feel I’m falling
I can count on you to stand by me
I’ve never known someone like you before
How can I say how beautiful you are?

I see God in you
I know that’s not something you go around saying
But I do believe it’s true
I see God in you
I want to say
I finally found my strength in the light that shines in you
That’s what I see
I see God in you

God must have known just what I needed
Someone to show me His true love
I know better now who He really is
I’ve seen a glimpse in you
I see God in you
I know that’s not something you go around saying
But I do believe it’s true

I see God in you
I want to say
I finally found my strength in the light that shines in you
That’s what I see
I see God in you
I see God in you


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Countdown: 
7 days till Easter
267 days till Christmas 

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Celebration

Class,

Today we are celebrating the birthday of Kripa Varghese.




Happy Birthday Kripa.