Mercy is Falling

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by Calven Celliers

We sure have had an abundance of rain in the last few weeks! What a blessing! As I stood at my window watching the rain falling on Tuesday evening, I suddenly found myself humming the tune of a well-known song that I don’t recall us singing in Church for a very long time.

Mercy is falling is falling is falling
Mercy it falls like a sweet spring rain
Mercy is falling is falling all over me

O Lord I receive your mercy
O Lord I receive your grace
O Lord I will dance forever more

In the book of Lamentations, the prophet Jeremiah laments over many aspects of the situation that the people of God found themselves in at that time, but sandwiched in the middle, we find his confident hope in the mercies of God, 22 The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. 23 Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.” (Lamentations 2: 22 & 23NLT)

Mornings symbolise freshness, new beginnings, newness of life, cleansing and hope. Just as each new morning brings a newness of day, and fresh light that drives out the darkness of night, we can refresh our souls in the same way. With every dawn, we can look for the light of God’s presence to break through the darkness in our lives and feed hope into our souls. Mercy is a display of God’s abundant nature. 

I remember as a child being taught that mercy is not getting what we deserve, and grace is getting what we don’t deserve. Throughout Scripture we can see that God’s mercy flows from His forgiving nature. He shows mercy when He is slow to anger and abounding in love. Mercy is not a benefit based on our merit but is a gift from God. Jesus made mercy an essential part of His ministry. He dined with tax collectors, healed the sick, relieved hunger, calmed storms, restored sight, and raised the dead. He is the full expression of God’s mercy to us. Mercy takes action. God gives mercy lovingly and He wants us to do the same. If you’re anything like me you’re probably going to make a lot of mistakes between now and when you get to heaven, and you’re going to need God’s mercy. But you cannot receive what you are unwilling to give. Jesus tells us in the Gospel of Matthew, Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” (Matthew 5:7NIV)

Each and every day we can feed on the great love, mercy, and faithfulness of God; every day we can remind ourselves that the character of God is full of perpetual mercy that never runs out or expires. Every day we can commit to extend the same mercy and grace that we have received from our Father in heaven, to those around us.

In closing I want to wish each and everyone of you a very happy and truly blessed Festive Season. This is the last NHCF blog post for 2021, and we’ll pick up again in the New Year.


God bless, be safe, and lots of love,


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Let Every Heart Prepare Him Room

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by Calven Celliers

Joy to the world! the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room, and heav’n and nature sing.

 Joy To The World, is without a doubt one of my all-time favourite Christmas carols. While it omits references to shepherds, angelic choruses, and wise men, it emphasizes the reverent, ecstatic joy that Christ’s birth brings to humanity.

For centuries hearts had yearned for God to reveal Himself personally. And then, at last, it happened. John reminds us in his Gospel when he wrote 14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14NIV) And for that reason, the entire festive season should be filled with rejoicing as we remember God’s great gift, the gift of salvation.

While many of us both give and receive gifts during the Christmas season, God gave us a gift we will never be able to repay. In exchange for our sins and shame, God offered us eternal salvation by sending His son, Jesus Christ, to earth as our Saviour. All we can do in return is accept this remarkable gift and pursue a relationship with the greatest gift-giver of all.” [Billy Graham]

That is why Jesus came from heaven to earth, so that you and I could have a personal relationship with Him and He could take up residence in our hearts. Jesus said, 20 …I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.” (Revelation 3:20NLT)

This verse screams of the very heart of Jesus and His desire to have intimate fellowship with you and me. This has been God’s heart from the very beginning of time and it will remain His heart until the end of time. Jesus offers us the opportunity to do life with Him. But notice that Jesus does not force His way into our lives, He stands and knocks, waiting for us to open the door (our lives) and invite Him in.

The real message of Christmas is not the gifts that we give to each other. Rather, it is a reminder of the gift that God has given to each of us. It is the only gift that truly keeps on giving. Jesus knocks on the door of our hearts in order to present a gift – the gift of Himself so that through Him, we may become children of God.

Is Jesus knocking at the door of your heart? Is He waiting patiently for you to open the door? Have you invited Jesus in to come and do life with you? He will not force His way in but be assured He is knocking! Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room…


God bless,


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Bear Each Other’s Burdens

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by Calven Celliers

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfil the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2NIV)

Most Bible scholars understand the law of Christ to be what Christ stated were the greatest commandments – 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12: 30 & 31NIV)

Love God and love people, that’s the law of Christ. And what better way to express our love for both than to carry each other’s burdens? There’s a reason why Jesus said the second greatest commandment is like the first: if we love God with all our heart, we will love our neighbour as ourselves It functions like faith and works; if we truly have the first, the second naturally follows.

“If we love God most, we will love others best.” (Jon Bloom)

One of the beautiful things about being a Christian is that you are not alone. God intentionally connects you with other believers and one of the reasons is so we can strengthen and encourage each other when life threatens to overwhelm.  It’s during those times that we can carry each other’s burdens by coming alongside a struggling brother or sister and helping them shoulder the weight of a trial or temptation that threatens to pull them under. I probably don’t need to tell you that the added strength and encouragement of others is often the difference between pressing on and giving up when the going gets tough.

No one should ever go through situations alone. The bottom line is we need each other. For every one of us there will come a point where you are overwhelmed by the weight of life. In those moments you will be grateful that there is someone there to help you carry that weight. This is one of the responsibilities of the body of Christ.

In our efforts to do good, we must not overlook the priority the apostle Paul sets in Galatians 6:10 – “ 10 Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.” (Galatians 6:10TheMessage)

The call to believers is to take advantage of every opportunity to do good and be helpful to all people, but especially to those who are of the household of faith, your brothers and sisters in Christ.

Bearing one another’s burdens is where the rubber meets the road. It is where you don’t just talk about your faith and the love you have for God’s people. It is where you show it. Remember, when you do this, you are being Jesus’ hands and feet to those who are in need of it. There are plenty of people who are carrying burdens right now who could use your help to lift that weight off them. If you know someone in that situation, then be the one to help them through it. I can say from personal experience they will be eternally grateful.


God bless you,


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by Calven Celliers

Have you ever set out to pursue something that was a goal or dream in your heart only to have it turn out to be completely different to what you thought it would be?

Yesterday morning I read a quote by Pastor Steven Furtick that dealt with just that –

“Don’t let your experience become the enemy of your expectation.”

As I read that I began contemplating the reality of expectations, and how creating expectations can open our hearts up to disappointment. How often do things in our lives go exactly as we planned?

Don’t get me wrong: planning is a good thing. It’s beneficial to be organized and to have certain things planned out, after all the failure to plan is a plan for failure. A wise person ponders and plans.

I guess the question I find myself wrestling with, however, is how do I react when things don’t pan out the way I’d hoped or planned? Do I get bent out of shape and let the disappointment crush my spirit?

And then these wise words of King Solomon in Proverbs 16 came to mind, 3Commit to the  Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” (Proverbs 16:3NIV)

What a comforting thought! How much happier we would be, how much lighter our burdens, if we would just commit all our ways to the Lord!  We plot and plan, fret and worry, failing  to be dependent upon God, forgetting that without His blessing, our plans will come to naught.

The apostle Paul was a man who often spoke of his plans to visit certain churches and wrote in his letters about the goals he wanted to achieve; but Scripture shows that although Paul made many good plans, not all those expectations were  accomplished, for the Lord was the one that directed his path.

Sometimes the plans we make may be good and honourable, but God knows the end from the beginning and may take us to a different destination with a different expected outcome. But if we are living by faith and trusting His guidance, He will bring us to the place that He knows is best.

God not only knows the future, but holds the future in His hands. How wise, therefore, to use our rational thought and God-given free-will to plan wisely, to the best of our ability, while recognising that God may either permit our plan to move forward, or He may overrule it according to His divine will and purpose for our lives. What a comfort to know that while we have the freedom to make our plans, the Lord will ultimately direct our feet into the way that is best for us.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3: 5 & 6NIV)


God bless,


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