Pastoral 2016

Friday Morning Prayer Meeting

Written by Rev (Dr) Prabhudas Koshy Sunday, 20 March 2016

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Prayer has been the life-line of Gethsemane B-P Church. In addition to the congregational gathering on Tuesday nights to pray together after the Bible learning, many “prayer-bands” in our church meet to pray at other times of every week. One of such is held on Fridays at 7.30am in the Church Resource Centre. Though it is made up of a small group of prayer warriors, they have been interceding for the church for the past eight years. We share with you a testimony by one of its regular participants, Sis Diana Chan. May God raise up such prayer groups of our worshippers and members all around this island!

Sis Diana Chan’s Testimony

We praise God for moving the heart of Pastor Koshy to hold a prayer gathering every Friday morning for Gethsemane Bible- Presbyterian Church brethren. Thank God for Pr Kelvin Lim for taking leadership of the Friday morning prayer meeting ministry since its inception on Friday, 7 November 2008.

This prayer meeting is held

The objectives of the Friday morning prayer meeting ministry are twofold:

When the Friday morning prayer meeting was introduced, it used to start at 6.30am and end at 7.15am. It was truly challenging holding the prayer meeting at such an early hour, as not many members would attend. Usually, besides Pr Kelvin Lim who led the meeting, there were one or two other members present for the sessions. There were occasions when due to work demands, the other members were not able to attend, so Pr Kelvin would spend time alone with the Lord.

Till today, it is still a small group attending the Friday morning prayer meeting. However, we praise and thank God for His grace and mercy in sustaining this ministry for almost eight years already. Currently, we are studying the Book of Acts. On those Fridays when Pr Kelvin has other speaking engagements outside of Singapore, Pastor Koshy would lead us in the meeting.

We usually start the Friday morning prayer meeting with responsive reading from the Word of God. Pr Kelvin would lead us in an opening prayer of praise and thanksgiving, followed by an exhortation taken from the text in the responsive reading. We thank God for the edification from God’s Word early in the morning.

Before we pray, we would go round the group for brethren to share their praise and prayer items. As the group is small, the items we share are usually quite in-depth, which include personal, family and church matters, as well as our individual ministries and service for the Lord.

We thank God for the praise and thanksgiving items. It is very encouraging to listen to brethren who, in rising up early and coming together in morning, give thanks and praise to God for His grace and faithfulness. “Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks” (Psalm 75:1). We also thank God for the prayer items. Truly, it is of the Lord’s mercy and grace that we are enabled to “let (our) requests be made known unto God” with joy, thereby allowing “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding” to guard our “hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

I am thankful for the Friday prayer meeting as “it is good for me to draw near to God” (Psalm 73:28) in the morning and, through the Word of God, be made more aware of His presence, as well as be guided in my thoughts, actions and behaviour as I go through the day.

May God bless all the brethren in Gethsemane Bible- Presbyterian Church and draw us close unto Him “that hearest prayer …” (Psalm 65:2), so that our mouths may “be filled with thy (God’s) praise and with thy (God’s) honour all the day” (Psalm 71:8).

Indeed, “Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee” (Psalm 70:4).

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He is Faithful to Keep Us Close to Him
Prabhudas Koshy

 

“God is faithful, by whom ye were
called unto the fellowship of his Son
Jesus Christ our Lord”
(1 Corinthians 1:9).

As Christians, one of our greatest consolations is that we have an unchanging, ever dependable, true and faithful God. Our circumstances may change, people whom we relied on for a long time may change, but He who has called us “unto the fellowship of His Son” will unchangeably remain as our endless help and strength.

God will also remain faithful to all His promises. He will not fail to perform what He has promised. We can trust Him to keep every word He has promised. He will not deceive us. He will not commence anything which He will not perfect and finish. Our confidence about the blessed hope that Christianity gives to us is wholly built upon the faithfulness of God.

The apostle Paul’s purpose in presenting the truth about God’s faithfulness here is to provide the proof for his earlier statement that the believers will be kept blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. In other words, their ultimate bliss in heaven is guaranteed by the fidelity of God. As Paul says in Philippians 1:6, “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ”.

Paul also reminds the believers that they have been called by God. He said to them, “ye were called”. It is God who has called them. The word “called” here does not refer merely to an invitation, but what the theologians refer to as “the effectual calling”. When the Gospel call is given to repent and to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, some hearers would reject it. But some others would experience a deep-felt inward call to repent and believe on Christ. Those who are effectually called are not those who just receive the external call of the Gospel, but also the inner call of the Gospel by the working of the Holy Spirit in their hearts. Westminster Shorter Catechism explains effectual calling as “the work of God’s Spirit, whereby, convincing us of our sin and misery, enlightening our minds in the knowledge of Christ, and renewing our wills, he doth persuade and enable us to embrace Jesus Christ, freely offered to us in the gospel” (Q & A: 31).

When God calls us, He leads us into a close fellowship or communion with His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. From then onwards, we shall enjoy a warm and abiding relationship with Christ. Let us always seek to walk with Christ.