20 March 2014 by Donna Uning CM-
“There are two concerns when it comes to our needs; first is our real need and second is our desire,” said Ps Petra Zulkarnain Sharief impartingg to the church fellowship at Kuching Park Hotel recently. The fellowship was one of the many gatherings held at the hotel for the Christian meeting annually.
Ps Petra Zulkarnain Sharief, familiarly known as Ps Zul, from Indonesia, was speaking at a gathering attended by Christians from various denominations.
Our real need also consisted of both the primary and secondary needs. “Eating and drinking, as well as our clothing are our primary needs,” he said. “It has a set time; just like eating and drinking which we can’t delay.” Our secondary needs can be delayed.
“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)
“We don’t have to worry about our eating and drinking, as well as our clothing. It is already provided by our Father in heaven,” he said.
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26)
“In fulfilling our needs, we first have to trust the promises of God,” he said. “God’s promises are yes and amen!”
“Our trust is as big as our faith and according to our faith; without faith, it is difficult to believe God’s promises,” he added.
Thomas did not believe when he saw Jesus even after Jesus asked for the same fish. He needed to feel His nail-pierced hands to believe.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)
“Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.” (Romans 10:17)
“It is God’s promise to us,” he said.
Second, we need to believe God’s decision. “God’s decision is for our good but often times, we reject His decisions,” he continued. Humans can only predict to the extend estimation. “Those who believe and trust God know that He is working things out for their own good,” he said.
“Next, give thanks,” the pastor continued saying. “When we are happy, we give thanks; but in good times or bad times we give thanks in any circumstances.” The Israelites were supposed to get to the Promised Land in 12 days, but it took them 40 years because they were 'slow to give thanks.'
“Those who give thanks get a lot of blessings.” He told about a woman and her child who were in a supermarket line. She got cut off but let it go and continued to give thanks to God. As it turned out, she was the 70th customer during the store’s 70th anniversary. She won a car. “When you continue to give thanks, you continue to receive God’s blessings.”
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4)
“When you stand with God and His Words, you will enjoy His blessing,” he said. “Be joyful that God’s promises will come to past,” he added. “When we complain at the beginning of the day, we will have a bad day; it’s the same when you start the day with bad news because it will fill our heads. Learn how to give thanks,” he said.
“Fourth, give back,” he said. “We are created in God’s image and likeness.” He continued telling about sowing and reaping. "It’s just like karma, but be we won’t be reincarnated as a rat,” he joked. What the pastor learned from the Israeli was that not only do they give their 10 percent tithes; they also give 40 percent to the community at the synagogue for those who need it.
“When you sow, look at the condition of the soil,” he said adding. “Good soil produces crop.”
“Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (Matthew 13:8)
“There’s a mega church with 16,000 people in Indonesia and the church gives with a cheerful heart; they give their monthly 10% tithe,” he told.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. (Malachi 3:10)
“Give cheerfully and don’t be afraid because God Almighty will provide for you His glorious riches in Christ Jesus,” he ended.
Ps Zul also taught the church a song in Hebrew which he recently learned before praying for the needs of the church. The meeting was conducted in Bahasa Indonesia and organized by Sarawak Total Revival Ministry or STORM.