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Goodnews Wrapped Around Cricket Magic Moments

When Raina Let The Cat Out Of The Bag….

Duke Jeyaraj’s poem on the climax of the India-Australia World Cup Quarter Final in Ahmedabad, 24 March 2011 in which Suresh Raina was a hero along with Yuvraj Singh

When Captain Dhoni was out, India’s semi-final entering hopes was staring down the mat,


India still needed 74 runs to get off 75 balls, when the steel-nerved Suresh Raina walked out to bat,


Chewing their nails, at the edge of their seats, the Indian spectators, with unbearable tension sat,


‘Would Raina prove to be a better choice than the left-out-from-the-XI Pathan?’ – this was the topic of every cricket chat,

As Yuvraj and Raina batted sensibly rotating the strike, hitting the odd boundary, the asking rate never got unmanagably fat,


When Raina hoisted the bleeding Bret Lee for an over-the-head six, from Yuvraj, he got a big hug and an approving pat,

As Yuvraj cover-drove Lee and sank on his knees to celebrate, every Indian joined him, from a Jain to a Jat,


At that point in time, first innings centurion Ricky Ponting, the two-time World Cup winning Aussie captain, wished he could hide in a hole like a rat!

Speaking to a commentator after the game, Raina, released from his bag, the proverbial ‘cat’,


“It was because of God’s grace,” he could do what he did, he said, in humility, adjusting his India hat,

Did you know that God’s grace was supremely shown, when upon sinless Jesus’ face, evil men spat?

He shed his blood to wash away your sin when he hung on that Cross – my friend have you ever heard that? When you repent from sin, and join Jesus, you’ll discover your life become full of meaning and never becomes flat!

(This poem of Duke Jeyaraj was published in Duke Jeyaraj’s 2012 book, The Goodnews for the Google Generation. This book is currently out of print. Duke is the founder of Grabbing the Google Generation from Gehenna Mission. This is a reader-supported Indian ministry to presentday people. Find out more at http://www.dukev.org. Watch Duke’s message videos at http://www.Youtube.com/VisitDuke).

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Cricket-Wrapped-Bible-Devotions Goodnews Wrapped Around Cricket Magic Moments

Inches Short

Duke Jeyaraj writes about Dhoni’s dismissal in the India-New Zealand World Cup Semifinal when India needed 25 off 10 and brings out a spiritual lesson from it!

“Banged in short and wide outside off, Dhoni leaps off his feet, goes airborne and scythes a six over backward point. Bam. The hands are still fast. Can the great finisher do it once again?” That was the commentary typed by the ESPN Cricinfo team for ball number 49.1 bowled by Lockie Ferguson in the World Cup Semifinal 2019 on 10 July 2019 at Manchester, England. When M. S. Dhoni sent the first ball of the 49th Over over the off-side field for a six, the kite of Indian hopes soared. Some of us got goosebumps! We got off our sofas and did fist pumps! The next ball was a dot ball. The third ball, as Dhoni tried to steal a couple by awkwardly directing a rising ball to the legside, he was caught inches short by a Martin Guptill’s direct hit! As the replays – the most heart-stopping replays in modern live Cricket broadcast history – confirmed India’s worst fears that Dhoni was run-out, tears were running down from the die-hard cricket fan’s cheeks. Rohit Sharma, who had carried India to the semifinal stage with five fabulous centuries in the group state, was also on the verge of tears. Dhoni waked back after scoring 50 off 72 balls (his second straight fifty in the World Cup Semifinal stage).

What if, Dhoni had not got run out at that stage? India would have needed 23 runs off 9 balls. The Dhoni we have known would have hit a six off one of next two balls. With 1 ball to go, in that over, the equation then would have been this: 17 off 7. Dhoni, predictably, would have taken a single, to retain strike for the last over. That would have meant, that India would have needed 16 runs off the last over of the World Cup Semifinals 2019 to make it to the Finals with the World’s best finisher on strike! In Chennai Super Kings must-win game versus Kings XI Punjab, Dhoni was batting in the final over of the match in IPL of 2010 with the equation being exactly the same: 16 off 6! And Dhoni finished that match with two balls to spare! The over bowled by Irfan Pathan went this way: 4, 2, 6, 6. He could have possibly done the same, in the World Cup Semifinals 2019, too! Who knows? What a finish, it would have been!

Are you ‘inches short’ of your salvation? Are you ‘inches short’ of the Kingdom of God? There was a religion scholar was inches short of the Kingdom of God – Jesus pointed out in the Gospels (Mark 12:34). He heard the narration of what was the greatest commandment from the mouth of Jesus himself! And Jesus said that he was not far from the Kingdom of God! He was inches close to the Kingdom, but not in the Kingdom! Why? Even following the greatest command will not give you salvation or give you entry into the Kingdom of God! Placing your trust in Jesus with a repentant heart will give you salvation, – this is what the Bible teaches (Luke 13:1-5; Acts 16:31). And having been saved, out of gratitude we follow the moral laws of God, the summary of which is to love God and love people as New Testament believers!

Are you religious? Your religious faith cannot save you! Religion can point to the fact that we need need salvation! But Religion itself cannot save us! Apostle Paul pointed this out in his speech in Athens (Acts 17:22, The Bible). He also pointed that people of all religions need to repent and come to Jesus, if they want to escape hell punishment on the final day of judgment in the same speech he gave in Athens, inspired by the Holy Spirit (Acts 17:30-31, The Bible). You are near salvation, when you are religious! Religious is an expression of your desperateness for God and Salvation! But religion itself cannot save you! You need a relationship with Jesus (John 17:3; Gen. 4:1)! Then you can have eternal life! Then you can enter God’s Kingdom! Then you can be saved! So come to Jesus, now!

(Read more presentations like this by Duke at http://www.PurposeSpot.blogspot.com. Duke Jeyaraj is founder of Grabbing the Google Generation from Gehenna Mission. This is a reader-supported Indian ministry. Find out more at http://www.dukev.org).

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Goodnews Around Contemporary Events

THE APPARENT SUICIDE OF THE HERO OF THE COMEDY MOVIE MRS. DOUBTFIRE, ROBIN WILLIAMS, MAKES US DOUBT IF LIFE’S PURPOSE CAN BE GOT THROUGH LAUGHTER….


Duke Jeyaraj

Oscar winning actor, Robin Williams, a comedian par excellence, died in 2014 after what was an apparent case of suicide. Suicide. Why do folks who ‘have it all’ like him commit suicide? The answer is simple: without a living, daily relationship with Jesus life will never be full and fulfilling – the Bible teaches (Read John 10:10). Jesus can take away the blankness in our bosoms as he is the only one ever who never sinned and thereby the only one who never had an empty feeling in his heart for sin causes an empty feeling. Ahitophel was a counselor to King David, the greatest king of Israel – a role perhaps equivalent to being AVP of a corporate company. Yet he committed suicide. Saul was the first king of Israel, a role like that being the CEO of a company or the President of a nation. Yet he committed suicide. Coming to Robin Williams, he may have thought laughter could give him lasting joy and may be that was why he acted as a comedian in some of his movies (think of Mrs. Doubtfire). But serenity was not his after smiles faded. Yes, calm was not his after the crackles of cheers died down. If the hero of the rib-tickling movie, Doubtfire, had indeed committed suicide it makes us doubt this statement: “Life’s ultimate purpose can be got through the route of laughter!” Life’s meaning is not ultimately found in achievements, we know that well deep down. Real, lasting peace does not come in the positions we possess. Life’s ultimate purpose cannot be discovered through the laughter, merry-making route (See Ecclesiastes 2:2 in the Bible). Life’s meaning is discovered when, after realizing all under the sun like wine, women, wealth, work, ‘wows’, etc., does NOT give purpose, we seek an on-going relationship with the One who is above the sun – even the God who made us (This is the message of the book of Ecclesiastes one of the 66 books of the Bible, see especially Ecclesiastes 2:25). Life’s meaning comes when we repent from sin and put our faith in God-in-flesh Christ Jesus who died for us on the Cross. Real peace is ours when we recognize that the punishment that brings us peace came upon Jesus when he hung on that Cross and when we come to him after taking a U-turn in this Sin Highway we are on (Read Isaiah 53:5, The Bible). Would you do that now?

(Duke Jeyaraj, an Engineer turned Doctor of Ministry graduate, is the founder of Grabbing the Google Generation from Gehenna Mission, a ministry to presentday people funded by Indians who read his writings and hear his messages. Find out more about Duke and this inter-denominational ministry by liking www.facebook.com/dukebook. Watch Duke’s message videos at http://www.Youtube.com/VisitDuke).

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Goodnews For Google Gen

September 11 Still Speaks – Duke Jeyaraj

 

sept 11New York. Big City. The City of Sky Scrappers. The Twin Towers of the World Trade Centres it’s pride and joy. Over 100 storeys high. 414 metres tall.  September 11, 2001,  said the calendar. Two aircraft ram into these strapping structures. The buildings sway like a boat in a rough sea. They come down crumbling.   For thousands it was all over. In a flash it all happens.

Rewind two thousand years. The town – Jerusalem. In the country of  Israel. Another tower crashes. 18 people get killed as a result. The tower had a name – the tower of Siloam. Some escape by the skin of their teeth. Narrowly. There was no newspapers then. No Times of India. No Hindustan Times . By word of mouth the news reaches this man. Who? Jesus. He told the crowd around him something which made their ears tingle: “Those 18 in Jerusalem the other day, the ones crushed and killed when the Tower of Siloam collapsed and fell on them, do you think they were worse sinners than all other Jerusalemites? No not at all. Unless you repent, you too will die!” (Luke 13: 3-5, MSG). The NASB renders the same set of verses thus: but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish (Luke 13:5). “Perish” is the Bible word for punishment in hell (Rev. 21:7-8). But God does not want anyone to perish but all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).

Have you repented? Have you repented from sin? If not do so now! Come to Jesus who died for you on the Cross!

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Cricket-Wrapped-Bible-Devotions Uncategorized

THE ROHIT HAND SIGNAL FROM THE BALCONY; THE JESUS HAND STRETCH FROM CALVARY! India-New Zealand World Cup 2019 Semifinals – a poem by Duke Jeyaraj with a message at the end)

rohit sharma signal

rohit hand gesture

A quick assessment of the pitch the incoming Kane Williamson made, as soon as Guptill got out

Plans for a 250 plus score rather than a 300 plus score,  began to immediately sprout,

The Kiwis ran furious 2s instead of going for big shots to reach 239 to set up a tantalizing bout,

Rohit, Kohli, KL and DK  went and the Indian were starting at a definite, by-New Zealand, semis rout,

Before Youngguns Pant and Pandya a way out from the Certain Defeat cave they fiercely cut,

Impatient Pant after four dot balls skied a shot only to be caught – why did play that shot, but?

After Pandya perished Jadeja’s  lusty, valiant blows ended India’s boundary drought!

But Dhoni’s go-slow now, acceleration later approach made the required run-rate stout!

44 off 26 to win with two set batsmen in at one point – India were very much in the game then, no doubt!

Instead of going for 6s, Dhoni ran 6 singles in the next few balls & in-the-Dhoni-created-pressure, Jadeja holed out

As Dhoni hit a goosebumps giving six over backward-point in ball 49.1 – India’s World Cup dream did not yet logout!

Guptill ran-out Dhoni at a time when 6 fielders were outside the circle – a clear case of rule flout!

India’s collective heart-beat stopped as teary eyed Dhoni walked back towards his team’s hut!

“We are the team that crash-landed Flight No. ODI World Cup No.3 For India’ – that is now New Zealand’s deserving strut!

When Rohit Sharma, flexed muscles to signal the ‘Be Strong – You Can Take India To A Win’ to Jadeja & my heart did jut!

But did you know that Jesus stretched his arms and died, he signaled, ‘You have hope for the Salvation Door even for the worst ever sinner is not shut!’

Turn from sin and put your faith in the only God-in-flesh Jesus and you will find peace-amidst-the-storm in your gut!

 

(Duke Jeyaraj is the founder of Grabbing the Google Gen from Gehenna Mission. Check out www.purposespot.blogspot.com for similar write-ups. Read more of Duke’s writings at www.dukewords.com and watch his videos at www.youtube.com/visitduke).