Bring It On 2012!

by Saturday, December 31, 2011

Thankful for what God has done in 2011. God spoke to me so much in this year, so much so that sometimes I asked him: "Hey Dad, why you speak so much?" Haha of course, I'm just joking with Him. Grateful for the times that He assured and spoke to me, and I believe one of the greatest topics that he spoke to me of, which I will bring it in the years ahead, was about relying on His strength and grace. "Lay on my strength and grace, for you are a mighty warrior."

Thankful for the friends I made in Polytechnic and in church. I thank God for leaders that He placed in my life, my discipler Karina and my friends who have been such a great encouragement in my walk with God. I don't know how many people I have strengthened or encouraged in this year, but I believe that God has been using me for you people, and I'm honoured and glad to be of help! :D

Ready and set to go for 2012. Believing for a greater fire and passion to rise up in me for the year 2012. I'm not ever satisfied with the fire that I'm having for Jesus now, knowing that there is more room for me to grow. I thank Jesus for bringing me closer this year, and I believe for greater things to come in this year ahead (Of course, I'll be faithful with the small things first :p)

So bidding goodbye to 2011, and saying hi to 2012... Daddy God, we're going to enjoy this journey together! :D

A mighty warrior

by Wednesday, December 28, 2011

“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
Judges 6:15

Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress while the angel appeared to him, telling him that the Lord was going to use him to save Israel. Gideon, judging his own worth, questioned:How can God use me to save Israel when I am the smallest in the clan and the least member in the family?”

When we are out in the wild, in the battlefield, where we cannot see the victory, we tend to look at the tunnel; at the valley of the shadow of death, concentrating on the darkness, and we question God: “Why I am not seeing the victory? When is the victory ever coming?” Even Gideon was focusing on the power and the oppressiveness of the Midanites. Having given over to the Midanites for 7 years, Gideon must be having the thought: “I have to thresh wheat in the winepress forever.

Sometimes, we find ourselves like Gideon, judging our strength and self-worth. When we do things in our own strength, we see our limitations: “But I am the least in the family. How can God even use me? or “I only have this amount of strength. I don't think I'll be able to finish this battle.”

Like Gideon, we sometimes give up and misunderstand God when we don't see His hands moving in the situation: “But the Lord has abandoned us and given us into the hands of Midan (Judges 6:13).” We concluded that God wanted to bring sufferings upon us, and he had abandoned us.

Looking at our strength, our self-worth, and having the misconception of the anger that God had, we give up the fight. Friend, today I assure you, that God is never angry with you for the wrong things you have done in the past. Sometimes such sufferings will come upon us so that we will realise that God is Lord over all. Like the Israelites who did not care about grieving God, being complacent and constantly doing evil, they had to go through such trials so that their eyes may be fixed back to the fact that God is the one who saved them, and He is Lord over their lives.

Cease fixing your eyes on the limited strength you have. God gave us this promise, that He'll never leave us and forsake us. Just like what God told Gideon: “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midanites, leaving no one alive (Judges 6:16), God is also giving us strength to strike down our enemy, the devil, just by calling out the name of Jesus.

Gideon had so much fear that he began threshing wheat in the winepress, but God assured him that he will be fine. The same goes for us. When we identify that fear and doubt, claim the promises of Jesus: “I have not given you the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7),” the more we shouldn't fear, but begin to strike down all doubts. Jesus has given us the power and authority to strike down the devil because of His death on the cross.

Also, stop focusing on the darkness in the tunnel. David said: “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me (Psalm 23:4).” David knew that the victory is in God's hands. Same for us, we should stop looking at the darkness. Though the darkness blind our eyes from seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, it doesn't mean the light is not there.

God called Gideon a mighty warrior though he looked upon himself as a weakling, being the smallest in his family. Friend, start to fix your eyes on Jesus and the victory that is still there at the end of the battle. Fix your eyes on Jesus's strength, for God is calling you a mighty warrior!

Resting In Jesus - Part 2

by Friday, December 16, 2011

Jesus promised: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you (Matthew 7:7). When we pray and ask God for things in our life to come to pass, we should rest in Him. However, sometimes doubts run wild in our minds and we questioned the existence and intentions and of God: God, are you real? Then why aren't you answering my prayers?

Sometimes, it is not that God doesn't accede to our request. It was the doubts that stop the prayer from being answered. When we keep doubting and doubting, constantly thinking of possible outcomes, we become blinded to the initial outcome that we desired for. Instead of hoping for the answer to our prayer, we are too focused on the outcome that was not even purposed for. The answer to our prayers resulted from the strong focused unintended outcome.

We should believe that God's word is forever settled in heaven (Psalm 119:89). Doubting is like undoing the promises that Jesus initially spoke about, because when He spoke: I have good plans for your life (Jeremiah 29:11) and doubts begin to rise in your heart, it is as good as Jesus not mentioning His promises at all.

Doubts arose due to us being too dependent on our flesh. Paul, the apostle, stated that anyone who is in Christ is a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). Though we are still in the flesh form, we are new in Christ. This is why we must die to flesh every day (Romans 6:6), because we know that staying in the flesh means staying conformed to the worldly body.

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Psalm 73:26 (NIV)

Doubting won't lead you to the answers of your prayers. Fully trust and believe that Jesus will supply today!

Resting In Jesus

by Sunday, December 11, 2011

When God says come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28), this rest is referring to the rest from worries. Many of times, we realise that we are always worrying. For instance, our test results, or situations which also seem to have no possible solutions. Therefore, when God grants us rest, we are resting from the tiredness we have felt from trying our best to solve the problem and the heavy burdens we have been carrying for so long, coming from the worries we had in the past.

We also rest, having the peace in our hearts that Jesus is the answers to our prayers. We rest in His arms, being aware that we don't have to worry about the unsolved problems and knowing the truth for ourselves that Jesus is good, and those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing (Psalm 34:10).

However, resting in Jesus doesn't mean not doing anything. You can't possibly pray that God will do your homework and then rest completely in faith, totally believing that the work will magically appear out of nowhere. Faith without deeds is as good as dead (James 2:26).

Similarly, you do not literally rest and don't pray, taking for granted that God knew your prayer beforehand or there is no point in you praying since Jesus knew your heart desire. Pray, believe, and rest in His promise, finished work, and grace.

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.
Hebrews 4:16 (NLT)

Worrying won't change anything. Begin to rest in Jesus and declare that there is victory in Christ today!

Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
Matthew 6:27 (NIV)

It's Those Little Things - Part 3

by Monday, December 05, 2011

Do you sometimes feel bad when you are not being recognised for the effort you contributed? Have you always desired to be in the limelight where people know you for the works that you have been doing?

Sometimes your heart's desire may be: “But no one is seeing my effort. I'm at the back where no one is looking at me.” You pull a long face. You get envious when you see other people getting recognition for the things they have done.

However, you need to realise that God recognises your effort. He looks above from heaven and will surely reward you for your obedience and faithfulness. No matter how big or small is the role that you are doing; God is looking at the heart. You may be serving in a ministry where you are being seen by people, but when you don't do it for God's favour and glory, the whole meaning of serving and glorification is lost. You are just serving for the sake of your own fame.

“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
Matthew 6:2-4 (NIV)

How can you believe if you accept praise from one another, yet make no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only God?
John 5:44 (NIV)

Do you do things so that man will praise you? Do you serve because you want to feel good about yourself when you found the favour of men alone? At the beginning, small responsibilities will be given to us because these are just the foundations of our attitude towards serving. When we learn to always glorify God in the small little things that we do, we will do the same when bigger responsibilities are handed over to us.

So take pride in those little things that you do. You be faithful with the small things, and you will see what God does as He opens up larger doors.

It's Those Little Things - Part 2

by Wednesday, November 23, 2011

When we have done well in our studies, we compliment ourselves for putting in tremendous effort and time just to get the good grade. When we overcame temptation we feel good about ourselves that we have won the battle and the devil is being defeated.

If we can just take some time to think through, we would find out that the root of our success, good results and the ability that we can resist temptations all comes from the One who grants us these: God.

Even before we knew ourselves, God already knew us, and the reason why we could excel, it's not only because of the effort that we put in; it was also because God created us with the ability to learn and persevere. The reason why we could overcome temptation is because we held on to the shield of faith: the faith we have in Jesus.

But, sometimes, it slipped off our minds that we have forgotten to give Him the glory He deserves. We take it that we were born to be smart and studious. It did not cross our minds that God was working behind the scenes. God was under-glorified.

When you take time to glorify God in those little things such as our studies, work and even simple things like washing dishes, Jesus becomes the centre of your life, and you will be able to value God more than what you are doing today.

What are the simple, little things that you find it hard or troublesome to do? Start to do it for the glory of God today!

If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 4:11 (NIV)

Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31 (NKJV)

It's Those Little Things

by Thursday, November 17, 2011

We tend to give God praise when we are going through a crisis or a problem that He has come through for us. We praise Him when He heals us from sickness and diseases. But when He keeps us from danger, harm and sicknesses, letting us go through the day smoothly, we take it as a natural, lucky or normal day.

Why will we only give Him praise only when He answers the big prayers that are visible to our eyes? Why will we not praise Him when we went through a bad or sulky day, or when He bless and keeps us from harm? If you realised, God is underpraised.

Instead of recognising the great power and the gifts on His hands, why not start giving God praise for those little things? It is only when we begin to praise God simply for who He is, then we will start to recognise God for who He is.

So, what are the little things in your life that you have taken for granted? Start to praise God for them today!

He alone is your God, the only one who is worthy of your praise, the one who has done these mighty miracles that you have seen with your own eyes.
Deuteronomy 10:21 (NLT)

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name.
1 Chronicles 29:13 (NIV)

Love - Part 2

by Monday, November 14, 2011

Whatever gifts that we have, if we do not do it in love, it all comes to nothing.

Take verse 3 as reference. If I can give my possessions to the poor so that I can claim credit for myself, or so that I can get famous, am I doing it out of love?

If God grants me the gift of wisdom, but I am doing it so that people can say I am wise and make me feel extremely good about myself, am I doing it because I love and want to encourage the person, or doing it just for my own fame?

This is why verse 8-9 goes on to say: when there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. When we are not exercising our gifts in love, it all comes to nothing.

Love is patient (verse 1). When you are teaching a slow-learner, do you get impatient because the person never understands what you are trying to tell them?

Love is not self-seeking (verse 5), meaning love is all about putting others first. Love is never selfish towards others; even to yourself. When we serve in a ministry, do we serve because we love God and His people, or do we do it because we are serving plainly for the sake of serving, to gain recognition, or to let people feel that we are useful?

It is only through perfect love that these gifts are made completed. This is why we need the complete, perfect love of God so that the execution of our gifts will be made complete. Start exercising your gifts with love today!

The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
1 Timothy 1:5 (NIV)


by Monday, November 07, 2011

We can boast about our love for Christ. Many of us can say: “I love Jesus!” But how many of us are aware, that our love isn’t really perfect?

When we are facing a huge crisis, and we do not know what the future holds ahead of us, instead of being patient (verse 4), we begin to constantly question God: “Why like this?” or “Why like that?”

Instead of putting our trust and hope (verse 7) that God has a good plan for us (Jeremiah 29:11), we begin to doubt the intentions of God: “God why do I need to face such sufferings?” Don't we know that, when God loves us, He will always protect (verse 7) us?

When we start doubting the intentions and goodness of God, we are not rejoicing with the truth (verse 6). For if we are doing so, then why are we doubting that God works for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28)?

Can we say that our love is perfect? Can we say that we have perfect love towards God or toward others?

This is why we cannot really boast that we love God, but it was God who loves us first (I John 4:19). Some of us may have thought this way: “I thought I was the one who made the decision to accept Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior.” Well, right before you made a decision to accept Jesus, He had accepted you way before you did, even before you knew about it. This was proven all through the shedding of His precious blood on the cross.

It is only through the love of God, that our imperfection became perfection because of the perfect love of the Father (verse 10). So we can only boast about this: “I love God because He first loves me.” It’ll be only through God’s grace and love that our love can be made perfect…

Shakeable Or Unshakeable? - Part 2

by Monday, October 31, 2011

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

God has great plans for your life. All He wants you to do is to trust, believe and rest in faith. Sometimes, in the process of fulfillment to this plan, God may want to shape you so that we can be prepared for greater.

Initially, you fully believe: “Yes God I know You have great plans for my life. Whatever it takes, I will obey so that we can see this plan fulfilled!”

All set and ready to go. Initially the walk was smooth. You had great faith that you will be able to finished walking the journey.

Halfway through, you began walking on rough paths. The walk was so hard for you to handle, and you struggled.

Then, the devil started to whisper into your ears: “Aiyah if God was really planning to prosper you, why is He letting you go through all these hardships? You fool, look how tired you having suffered all these. God doesn't mean well for you at all!”

In the end, you begin to doubt God's intentions and His goodness. Just by the lies of the enemy, your faith began to shake. You have been tricked to believe that God was not so good after all.

There is always room for faith to grow. Whenever you doubt, as long as you learn the truth about God, your faith will rise. But why are we constantly letting the devil trick us over and over again, even though we know that He is a father of lies (John 8:44)?

Here I look at Jesus when He was being tempted by the devil. With the fact that Jesus is God in human form, some of us may say confidently that He will be able to stand against those temptations.

But, if you look closely, Jesus was tempted straight after He fasted for 40 days (Matthew 4:1-11). Wasn't He like us, tired and hungry, tempted in weakness? In the end, He overcame temptation, because of His unshakeable faith. And it was all because Jesus recognised who God the Father was, thus leading to His unshakeable faith.

Even at the cross, while the soldiers were all mocking at Him, telling Him to save Himself if He was the Messiah, He could have thought it this way: So Father, in the end you are not coming to my rescue. You have deserted me.” Instead, He chose to stand in faith and believe that His Father in heaven had a greater purpose for His life (Matthew 27:27-54). The pain He was bearing on the cross did not blind Him from His knowledge of His Father in heaven.

If your parents will plan and save money for your future education, what makes you think your heavenly Father won’t do the same (Matthew 7:11)? If God can fearfully and wonderfully create you (Psalm 139:14), why will He want to destroy His masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10)? Recognising who God is will allow you to trust in His goodness and intentions. Remember, God has a great plan for your life!

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2 Corinthians 12:9 (NKJV)

Shakeable Or Unshakeable?

by Wednesday, October 26, 2011

“You don't have enough faith,” Jesus told them. “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.”
Matthew 17:20 (NLT)

Once I thought to myself that my faith will never waver and believed that when I have faith in God I can command the mountains to move and it will move. But how many of us actually are aware, deep down in our hearts, that sometimes we may pray and believe, but in some point of time, because we thought this prayer request is too big and impossible, we doubt.

Faith does not merely believe at that instant when in prayer; faith is about believing all the time: at the time you started praying, to the time you finished praying, all the way till the time when your prayers are fulfilled. Because you never stop praying, you never stop believing.

Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD,
And whose hope is the LORD.
For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters,
Which spreads out its roots by the river,
And will not fear when heat comes;
But its leaf will be green,
And will not be anxious in the year of drought,
Nor will cease from yielding fruit.
Jeremiah 17:7-8 (NKJV)

True, unshakable faith believes in God 100%. You may sometimes question God: “God, I believed for breakthroughs, but why it was not fulfilled?” Why not question yourself: While in the midst of the wait, are there any points in time that your faith wavered? True faith leaves no evidence of doubt: not even a minute or a split second.

But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.
James 1:6 (NLT)

Perhaps you may be waiting for healing, financial or family problems to be solved. But it has been many years ago since you started praying and believing.

You may have been waiting for 30 years to be able to stand from that wheelchair or want to see your friends around you come to Christ. Then your situation turned uglier. Your illness began to hit the worst climax, your friends’ heart hardened to the extreme and you have heavier debts to settle. So what now? You decided to give up?

A few months ago I heard this webcast sermon by Pastor Matt Sorger. In His sermon He made a statement that I will never forget:

“Your greatest warfare will be before your greatest breakthrough.”

We tend to start strong in faith. But the more we begin to see that this warfare is getting fiercer, the more we feel like giving up. Don't you realise now that your greatest breakthrough is right before your greatest warfare?

The more the warfare gets fiercer, the more our dependency on God shall arise. These fierce battles should never give us any excuse to self-declare that the war is over, and then give up completely. The more we feel we can't stand to fight, the more we should count on Jesus for strength. For whatever that may seem big and impossible for us, nothing is too hard for Him.

Your breakthrough is right at the corner. Will your faith be shakeable or unshakeable to stand in this war? Remember, you are not alone.

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.
1 Peter 5:8-9 (NLT)

Wisdom Beyond Horizons

by Thursday, October 20, 2011

Before you even start reading this, I hope you can take some time to think about this: What is wisdom all about?

Wisdom is defined in the dictionary as the ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting; insight. To me, wisdom means the person is able to see far beyond what others are able to see. The person possesses the ability to allow another person to change their perspective of what they usually think because of their great understanding. Also, he or she is able to discern truth.

However, is this what wisdom is really more about? Is there more to the wisdom we usually thought about or defined?

Reading this verse:
But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.
James 3:17 (NLT)

This verse set my mind thinking. Is wisdom all about being smart in thoughts? There was more than meets to the eye. It brought my mind to this statement: what would Jesus do (WWJD)?

When we define wisdom as being able to act smart, God goes beyond and states that wisdom is all about love and peace. Wisdom in man's definition means acting right, but wisdom in God's definition means acting right, in love, gentleness and purity. God's wisdom is pure because it does not allow any impure action to take root. This is when you act in God's love and when the person becomes transformed by the love of Jesus, you're doing a good deed.

Put yourself in the shoes of a parent. What will you do when your child does something wrong? Will you cane him because he deserves to be punished? Or will you discipline the child by advising and telling them that this is not what they are supposed to do? When you act in wisdom, you discipline in love; not subject the person to a penalty for the offense that they have committed.

In some point of time I asked for God to punish me because I have done wrong. But I realised that God will never punish me, but discipline and correct me in love. This was when I recognised that God is a God of wisdom. If He kept punishing me because of every sin that I have done, most likely, overtime, I will grow to hate Him because of the punishments induced upon me. Since He chose to discipline me in love, I began to appreciate the way that He works, and I grew to love Him more and more each day. This is what Jesus will do.

"Blessed is the one whom God corrects;
so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.”
Job 5:17 (NIV)

There are so many situations which we can act wisely. Like what James addressed to the early church, they could choose to overcome their mouth instead of quarreling. However, will you take that wisdom beyond horizons: not merely because you want to act right, but because you want to express God’s love and transform others?

--Special thanks to Valerie for triggering this thought! :p--

Giving Everything - Part 3

by Friday, October 14, 2011

Having big loads of problems at hand, sometimes it is hard to focus on God. Worrying will always be the first thing that comes to mind. Gradually, I realised that I became so weary about having to worry. There are bound to be cramping of negative thoughts, dashing all hopes for solutions. Soon, I would find myself becoming a professional escapist of problems.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)

Complaining would be another thing that I will sometimes do. I don't blame God that problems are happening, but I will complain and constantly ask when the end will come. Soon I realised that complaining won't solve the problem.

Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.
Philippians 2:14-15 (NLT)

God didn't place problems in our life to bring us down or to train us to become professional escapist of problems. Thinking deep, worrying, complaining and blaming ain't any solution to solving problems, for it will still knock at your door, waiting for you to solve them.

These problems are placed there to reshape us, let our faith arise, and to teach us to be totally reliant on God:

You will keep in perfect peace
all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you!

Trust in the LORD always,
for the LORD GOD is the eternal Rock.
Isaiah 26:3-4 (NLT)

"But God, if I fully depend on You, I won't be able to prove to You that I can solve this problem myself." Sometimes I long to prove to God that I can walk through these myself, and I found myself rejecting the help of God. However, it was only until later that I knew that I cannot depend on my own strength, for the strength that I have is just so limited.

I need to fully surrender myself to God and die to self daily. Stop having to struggle with that heavy load of burdens and problems. Cast them all upon God. Give Him everything today!

Give your burdens to the LORD,
and he will take care of you.
He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.
Psalm 55:22 (NLT)

“Don't tell God how big the storm is. Tell the storm how big Your God is.”

Giving Everything - Part 2

by Tuesday, October 11, 2011
While Jesus was in the Temple, he watched the rich people dropping their gifts in the collection box.
Then a poor widow came by and dropped in two small coins.
“I tell you the truth,” Jesus said, “this poor widow has given more than all the rest of them.

For they have given a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she has.”
Luke 21:1-4 (NLT)

I was reading these verses and I was amazed at the widow’s action. She gave 2 small coins: all that she had to live on. Didn’t she think beforehand that these 2 coins that she was giving were going to be used for other needs?

On the other side there was the rich who gave much more money than the woman, perhaps thinking that someone sitting near the temple’s collection box would look and be impressed at the great amount of offerings they were presenting.

Then Jesus steps in and gave this statement: This poor widow has given more than the rest of them.

Jesus was not looking at the great amount of offerings presenting by the rich individuals. He was looking at the percentage of the abundance that they had given.

I want you to show love,
not offer sacrifices.
I want you to know me
more than I want burnt offerings.
Hosea 6:6 (NLT)

So what shall I say? This old woman knew Jesus more than the rich people did. What about the amount? For, if the rich knew Jesus more than the old woman, they would have placed all their possessions in that collection box. However, it was not the outcome.

The widow knew Jesus more than those people. Without caring about the little amount that she could give, or her needs, she instantly gave her all. She knew that God is worthy of her everything, therefore she gave her everything to Him.

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
Luke 6:38 (NIV)

Give everything to God, for He sacrificed everything for you first…

One person gives freely, yet gains even more;
another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
Proverbs 11:24 (NIV)

Giving Everything

by Friday, October 07, 2011

I always regard giving as a blessing. The more I give to God the more I will feel happy because I know that God always gives me more than what I always give to Him. Often, when I think about the great things that God had, has, and will give me in time to come, it blows my mind away.

“What can I give in return to the King?” I know that, no matter how much I give, it shall never surpass the things that He has done for me. Though small, never able to outshine the gifts of God, the only thing I can give to God is my life.

“Small… Small… Small” This word kept dwelling in my heart. How small is my life that God can use? To what extent can my life be of great impact? Though I may be small?

Later, as I read these few verses, I began to see my life in a whole different perspective:

“There’s a young boy here with five barley loaves and two fish. But what good is that with this huge crowd?”

“Tell everyone to sit down,” Jesus said. So they all sat down on the grassy slopes. (The men alone numbered about 5,000.) Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks to God, and distributed them to the people. Afterward he did the same with the fish. And they all ate as much as they wanted. After everyone was full, Jesus told his disciples, “Now gather the leftovers, so that nothing is wasted.”

So they picked up the pieces and filled twelve baskets with scraps left by the people who had eaten from the five barley loaves.

When the people saw him do this miraculous sign, they exclaimed, “Surely, he is the Prophet we have been expecting!”
John 6:9-14 (NLT)

Though that young boy had 5 loaves and 2 fishes, only enough for his meal consumption, he gave it to Jesus. If I was in that boy’s position, maybe my initial thought would be identical to his disciple Andrew’s: “But what good is that with the huge crowd?”

Little will I expect that the little food for my meal would be able to feed 20 people, let alone 5,000! But Jesus performed the miracle: there were even leftovers!

It taught me one thing:
My life may be small, but if I would just give Jesus everything, He can use me and multiply everything for His great and big purpose.

Therefore, never belittle the capacity of your life. All it matters is this: Will you give God everything?

Sympathy vs Compassion

by Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Most people, unless cold-blooded, will have a heart of sympathy. But when it comes to having a heart of compassion, not many people possess this.

For instance, you may be walking on a street and you notice some random, shabby guy lost and badly injured. His face suggested to you that he wanted to ask someone for directions to the nearest clinic. Most people may walk pass him, or feel that he is pitiful. Less people will go all the way to help him and make sure he gets to the clinic.

There are so many situations that most people can show their sympathy towards a person, but how many people will ever show their compassion?

How many people will stretch out their hands to help someone in need? How many people will help someone who has a problem and make sure their problem is solved?

The bible differentiates the outcome of those who stretch forward and lend a helping hand, to those who merely empathize over that situation:

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home.

I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’
“Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing?

When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?

“And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’
Matthew 25:34-40 (NLT)

For those who possess a heart of compassion, God allow them to inherit from the kingdom of heaven. For one of the least of those brothers, God still regards them as precious in the family of God.

For I was hungry, and you didn’t feed me. I was thirsty, and you didn’t give me a drink.

I was a stranger, and you didn’t invite me into your home. I was naked, and you didn’t give me clothing. I was sick and in prison, and you didn’t visit me.’

“Then they will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help you?’

“And he will answer, ‘I tell you the truth, when you refused to help the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help me.’
Matthew 25:42-45 (NLT)

But for those who refuse to help when the least of those brothers are facing with problems, merely stating to them that they feel with their situation, they were going away to eternal punishment:

“And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous will go into eternal life.”
Matthew 25:46 (NLT)

I rather desire to possess a heart of compassion so that when anyone is in need, I will never turn them away…

Your Real Identity

by Saturday, September 24, 2011

I thought I was never going to get out of my past. I thought this was going to be a stumbling block that will not allow God’s presence or healing to come through for my life. I placed the perspective that I have been deducing about myself, from what I have been hearing, to how God thought about me. Little did I expect that this was not the real me…
I realized that I need to find out my real identity: in Christ.

To realize my real identity in Christ, these were some of the things I had to work out:

1) Detect the lies of the enemy
In the past, the enemy may take advantage of situations and lead you to believe that you are a baddie or a troublemaker. Using words like "hypocrite", "useless" and "unworthy", a perfect lie or a constant sounding could mold you and make you think that you are such a person. These lies will even distort your picture of the great, heavenly Father.

He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.
John 8:44 (NLT)

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:8 (NIV)

2) Question your thoughts with the word
God is the living word (John 1:1). When you know that there are thoughts running wild in your mind, and these thoughts are trying to bring you down, or they are shifting you away from knowing who you are, refer back to the word. God speaks through the word.

Few verses to point out:

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
John 19:30 (NIV)

The finished work on the cross is the main element that would give us a life of victory. Though stuck from our past, Jesus is the one that frees us from the core of our current being and He makes us realize who we are in Christ.

So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death. The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins.
Romans 8:1-4 (NLT)

God assures that he won't condemn or hate you because of the past wrongdoings. He freed us from the past and from the devil’s clutches by sending His one and only Son to pay the price for all that we have done.

3) Never let the old you determine the future you
“I failed in the past, so I am bound to be a failure in future.” This was one thought that ran over my mind when I felt that I have failed God. I thought that if I was such a person in the past, I may be such a person forever. Maybe the proverb “The leopard does not change its spot” is a true statement in regards to who I really am: I will not change.

Even when I became real with my relationship with Christ, the same thought will run through my head, making me feel that I am not fit to walk with God. God then shook away that thought through this verse:

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NLT)

I immediately knew what He was trying to tell me. To realise my real identity in Christ, firstly I need to shake off that thought that the old me will never determine who I will be in future. When I mean business with God and sincerely want to start anew with Him, He gives me a new life: the old has gone and the new has come!

Friends, if you have been thinking negative thoughts about yourself, that what the devil or people spoke about you is your current self, I just want to challenge you today that God is a God who loves you and He wants you to find out your new identity in Christ. Even I am trying to realize who I really am in Christ. So ask yourself: Do you think the current you is the real you in Christ?

Walking Through The Storms

by Friday, September 16, 2011

Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.
“Yes, come,” Jesus said.

So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted.

Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?”

Matthew 14:28-31 (NLT)

In the storms of your life, are you like Peter, who will become terrified while looking at the strong circumstance coming over your life, or will you fix your eyes on Jesus?

1) Peter fixed his eyes on what was near
For Peter, he took notice of the strong winds and the waves. Even though he was the one who initiated Jesus to let him walk on the water, instead of having that strong faith, believing that he will get to Jesus, he took notice of the strong waves that was beneath his feet.
Similarly, when we are walking through life’s’ storms, will we fix our eyes on the present situation which seems unsolvable, or will we fix our eyes on Jesus?

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)

2) Crossing over the supernatural as a natural being
Put yourself in this situation: if you are Peter, and Jesus asks you to walk on the water to meet with Him, will you be able to do so? Will you fret because you are walking on the water or will you stir up your faith and believe that you are not going to sink or fall down because Jesus is right opposite you?

Perhaps you would have thought that you are in a natural realm so if Jesus asks you to walk on water, the first thought that may come to your mind would be: “But this is the sea! How can I be able to walk on water? It’s nuts!”

Well, will you have just that little faith to believe that you will be safe in His hands? For our God is a supernatural God, and all you need to do is to believe.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.
Proverbs 3:5 (NLT)

3) Overcome fear with faith
Notice that God assured the disciples when they were afraid:

When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!”

But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here!”
Matthew 14:26-27 (NLT)

Shortly after Jesus assured them, Peter walked over to Jesus. But he began to sink as he walked over. Didn’t Jesus just assure him that “I am here?” Or was Peter too old that he became to be forgetful?

Therefore, when Jesus assures, have faith that will not lead to doubt. Even when constant problems hit your life, remember that God is always with you.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.
2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT)

Say to those who are fearful-hearted, “Be strong, do not fear! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the recompense of God; He will come and save you.”
Isaiah 35:4 (NKJV)

Power In Declarations

by Thursday, September 08, 2011

Exhausted and tired over questioning God why. It's not that God doesn't want to answer me; I know that He is stirring my faith to believe that He is bigger and greater than my situation. And I know that there is power in declarations, when I declare things over my life:

1) Declare His favor
Why will God put through so much thought to uniquely design you and make sure you come into earth as a beautiful child, handcrafted by Him? This is all because His favor and love is upon your life. You may question God: “Why am I suffering so much? It is as thought you are not near.” Know that God works all things together for good (Romans 8:28), and when He allows tribulations to happen, He will bring you through it.
For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.
Psalm 139: 1-18 (NLT)

2) Declare God’s grace
Based on past treatments by people, you may think that whatever treatments that humans give you, God will treat you the same way. So if someone in your family constantly punishes you, you will most likely expect God to punish you before He forgives you. But, Jesus is not the same Father that treats you the same. The same picture of the angry daddy may dwell on you when you sinned, hence giving you the thought: “Well, I am not matching up with God’s standards, so I bet He is still angry with me. I don’t think I’ll be forgiven unless He comes down from heaven to punish me.” No, God’s grace is more than sufficient in your life. As long as you admit your sins, confess and apologise, God will forgive you.

David committed adultery with Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11:1-4), and God sent the prophet Nathan. Thereafter, David realized that he was wrong and he admitted his sin to God. It was entirely by God’s grace that set him free and he was called holy again.

When I refused to confess my sin,
my body wasted away,
and I groaned all day long.

Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me.
My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.
Finally, I confessed all my sins to you
and stopped trying to hide my guilt.
I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the LORD.”
And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.
Psalm 32:3-5 (NLT)
So think clearly and exercise self-control. Look forward to the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world. So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then. But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy. For the Scriptures say, “You must be holy because I am holy.”
1 Peter 1:13-16 (NLT)

3) Declare His kingdom come
When Adam and Eve sinned, God said that they would die and know between right and wrong. Also, they were banished from the garden of Eden (Genesis 3).

"For the Son of Man came to seek and save what was lost."
Luke 19:10 (NIV)

What was lost? Was it our salvation? No! What was lost was the joy and peace that we could enjoy in the Holy kingdom. It was the life that we could enjoy without any worries.

However, God loved us too much, therefore through the victory of Jesus on the cross, we can now easily proclaim His kingdom come upon our lives (Matthew 6:10). For in His kingdom, sickness, bondages, strongholds, pain, guilt shall reign no more.

At times when you feel like questioning God why such things have been happening in your life, and when there seems to be no way out, turn your focus to the kingdom: For in God's kingdom, nothing is impossible. So when you are declaring His kingdom, you are declaring His Lordship over your life. What worries will you ever have when you entrust your life with the King, who has great plans for your life? (Jeremiah 29:11)

Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.
Matthew 4:23 (NIV)
“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.”
Matthew 5:3 (NLT)
Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made.
Psalms 145:13 (NIV)

Blessed To Have Found Jesus

by Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Because He is my Father, I became a child of God.
- John 1:12
Because He is my King, I became a princess of His kingdom.
- 1 Timothy 1:17
Because I was fearfully and wonderfully made, I know that I am precious in His sight.
- Psalm 139:14
Because He fed the birds of the air, which did not even sow or reap, I know that God will clothe me, feed me and provide me.
- Matthew 6:26
Because He died and rose again, triumphing over death, I know that nothing will be impossible for me as long as I believe in Him.
- Colossians 2:15
Because He expressed His great love and forgiveness through the cross, I can now learn to forgive and love others just as how He did.
- Romans 8:31-32
Because He baptised me with His Spirit, I now have a deeper assurance that He is alive and living in me.
- Acts 1:8
Because He is the creator of the universe, at His command, everything became in order, I know He will enable me to do miracles with the same power that He has.
- Genesis 1:1

I give all glory for He deemed me as precious, worthy and I feel blessed to have found Jesus...

Grace The Way With The Law In Place

by Thursday, August 25, 2011

“I feel so unworthy. How can I ever get to encounter you?”

“My past is just so bad. How will I ever get close to you?”

“Oh no Lord, choose someone else. I am just not suitable for you to use me.”

“I have screwed up in the past. I cannot ensure that I am going to accomplish this successfully now.”

Ever felt so unworthy until you start to doubt if you are ever going to get any closer to God? Well, I felt that way not long ago. Looking back at my past, never did I expect that God will choose to use me. Glancing around the hall, I thought that God had so many better candidates that He could choose from, so why me?

I initially thought that all the past sins that I have done was the stumbling block which separated me from getting to feel God’s tangible presence. When I asked God if He could just let me feel Him, and when He did not show up, I thought to myself: “I have sinned yesterday. Maybe God is still angry with me.” The point of feeing unworthy just brought me to a stage where I stopped asking God for encounters, and I thought I was never going to get any closer to Him unless I remove this foundation. To me, I feel it was impossible to remove this off from my mind without starting life anew. Not wanting to lose any opportunity to get an encounter with Jesus, I foolishly prayed and asked God if He could just give me a new brain. That would just save the hassle of me needing to find a way to break down those high walls.

Thinking back now, I realized God was stirring up a hunger for encounters. When I did not get to encounter Him, no doubt I feel unworthy; I still want to feel His presence. When He doesn’t show up, all I did was to wait and wait and believe that, one day, He will show up. Another reason was because I did not give everything to Him – clearly identified, my past. God then dropped a thought while I was reading this verse:

Sin is no longer your master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, you live under the freedom of God’s grace.
Romans 6:14 (NLT)

If I know that I have sinned, and I truly repent,
Since I am no longer living under the law, but under the grace of Christ Jesus,
What is holding me back from surrendering my past to Him?
If I regard myself as living under grace,
I shouldn’t be feeling unworthy that God has not forgiven me;
As though God is going to hit me with a cane
By the grace of Jesus, I am set free and forgiven.

I do not desire to take any advantage of the grace that I have. Just because I am living under the freedom of God’s grace, it does not mean that I can keep sinning on and on, knowing for sure that God will forgive me. By no means shall I keep living under the devil’s foot, displeasing God:

Well then, if we emphasize faith, does this mean that we can forget about the law? Of course not! In fact, only when we have faith do we truly fulfill the law.
Romans 3:31 (NLT)

God the Father knew you and chose you long ago, and his Spirit has made you holy. As a result, you have obeyed him and have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ. May God give you more and more grace and peace.
1 Peter 1:2 (NLT)

As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 2:4-5 (NIV)

I know that the more I take advantage of His grace, the more I will sin. Resultant to this will be an unholy life. How then, can I keep calling myself a child of God when my ways are not of His ways?

So, still thinking that you will be stuck forever, unable to get out of your past? Or thinking that God will not accept you again since you drifted away from Him? Why not try to declare His favour and grace over situations in your life that seemed to have no way out? – For God shall provide a way, through His everlasting love…

Called Or Chosen?

by Saturday, August 20, 2011
Matthew 22:14 Pictures, Images and Photos

What is the difference between being called and being chosen? Shown in the lives of Moses and Joshua:

Moses was called to enter the promise land. However, mentioned in Exodus 4, Moses deemed himself as unworthy and he did not have full faith that God was going to be with Him:

But Moses pleaded with the Lord, “O Lord, I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.” 
Then the Lord asked Moses, “Who makes a person’s mouth? Who decides whether people speak or do not speak, hear or do not hear, see or do not see? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go! I will be with you as you speak, and I will instruct you in what to say.” 
But Moses again pleaded, “Lord, please! Send anyone else.” 
Exodus 4:10-13 (NLT)

Next, stated in Numbers 20, Moses disobeyed God:

Moses and Aaron went from the assembly to the entrance to the tent of meeting and fell facedown, and the glory of the LORD appeared to them. The LORD said to Moses, “Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.” 
So Moses took the staff from the LORD’s presence, just as he commanded him. He and Aaron gathered the assembly together in front of the rock and Moses said to them, “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank. 
But the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.” 
Numbers 20:6-12 (NIV)

These in turn led Moses into being just called to enter the promise land. However, for Joshua, he was chosen by God to enter the promise land. Notice that in Joshua 1, when God told him that it was time that he will lead the people to cross the Jordan, Joshua did not behave like Moses, constantly thinking that he was not the right person for God to use him. All Joshua did was to walk in absolute faith and obedience in accordance to what God commanded him to do:

“Be strong and courageous, for you are the one who will lead these people to possess all the land I swore to their ancestors I would give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” 
Joshua then commanded the officers of Israel, “Go through the camp and tell the people to get their provisions ready. In three days you will cross the Jordan River and take possession of the land the LORD your God is giving you.” 
Joshua 1:6-11 (NLT)

Moses was initially chosen by God to lead the Israelites to enter the promise land. But he wasn’t like Joshua. Since he deemed himself as unholy and unworthy to step into the land, no matter how much assurance God gave to Him, he still requested for God to only let him see the land. Joshua, however, did what God asked him to do. Therefore, this led to Moses becoming called by God and Joshua chosen by God as a leader for the Israelites.

Today, in your own life, God may have called you to do something, but are there any stumbling blocks that are stopping you from being chosen? Are you like Moses, constantly giving God excuse that you cannot be used by Him, or you are like Joshua, walking in obedience?

For many will be called by God, but only those who say: “Yes Lord, I will go wherever you want me to go. I'll do whatever you want me to do.” - these are the people who will be chosen by God because they do not let anything go against the will of God.

Let praise arise!

by Thursday, August 04, 2011

O Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us.
Your plans for us are too numerous to list.
You have no equal.
If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds,
I would never come to the end of them.
Psalm 40:5 (NLT)

After reading this verse, I decided to take some time to think about the things that God has done through my life. Immediately I started thanking God as I thought for a while and he begin to remind me of uncountable events when He healed and forgave me, I stood in awe of Him. Indeed, like what David the psalmist wrote, you will never be able to recount those great wonders that God had done, and is going to continue doing in and through your life!

While I was busy thinking about the great wonders that God has done, I felt that God was reminding me about this post that He led me to write on: Forgotten hands.

Through this post, He reminded me that there may be some occasions, when things are just not going right at home, or when my prayers just don't seem to be answered, instead of just emo-ing at one spot and repeatedly question God why things turn out that way, or forgetting to give Him the praise He deserves for each day, what He wanted me to do was to recall every good thing that He had done in the past, and then praise Him even when it seemed impossible, and trust in what He says:

"If I could do great wonders in the past; if I brought breakthroughs in your life previously, nothing will be too hard for me now, even for this situation. For whatever I can do in the past, I will bring you through it, for I am more than able!"

Also, when I was looking through the list, God showed me past deeds that He has done. However, having moved on in life, it seems that I have forgotten some great deeds that He has done in the past. Having this whole list now, it served as a reminder, not only as a tool during my hardest times, but also for me to constantly give Jesus the praise that He deserves.

I said to the Lord, “You are my Master!
Every good thing I have comes from you.”
Psalm 16:2 (NLT)

Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.
Jeremiah 33:3 (NLT)

Always have a grateful heart for what God has done, and is about to do in your life. And, never take anything that God has been doing for you lightly or forget about it and throw it at one side. Jesus has been great, and will never ever do things that will harm your future. :)

How can I not praise
When you have done so much great things in my life?
I will not stay silent anymore
For you alone are worthy
Who can I still sing all my praises to?
I may find some great friends on this earth worthy to be praise
But, thinking properly
These are the friends that you have given to me
Who can I find in this world so worthy to be praise but you?
You alone are a loving God
And this is why I'll continue to praise!

Praise the Lord!
How good to sing praises to our God!
How delightful and how fitting!
Psalm 147:1 (NLT)

“Why did this happen to me?”

by Tuesday, July 26, 2011

When illness struck you, when problems arise, or when tragedy happens, and you feel that you are struggling in life, you may ask God: “Why did this happen to me?” Today, God led me to two people in the bible that suffered a lot, and He referred me back to my own situation.

The first person is Job, which I think most Christians would have read about in the bible. Since the devil came with the angels, to God, God told him to consider Job, who was a blameless and upright man (Job 1:1). However, the devil challenged by saying that, since tragedy hasn’t come upon Job’s life yet, if everything in His life were to be struck, Job will start to curse God (Job 1:10-11).

The second person is Paul, an apostle called by God. After God revealed Himself to Paul (Acts 9), he started his ministry. Being in chains for Christ, he suffered hardships for Christ’s sake.

These people are the people who followed God faithfully. Why, then, will sufferings come upon their lives?

Does it mean that we will only praise God when things are good, and blame or curse Him when we are suffering? Even when situations makes us feel that God is not there, or the sufferings is something unbearable, will we give up on God, or choose to thank Him and continue to place our trust in Him in every situation?

Job still continued to praise God even when sufferings came upon Him:

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb,
and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away;
may the name of the LORD be praised.”
Job 1:21

For Paul, he decided to take pleasure in His weakness:

That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:10

Similarly, for us, instead of asking God: “why are these sufferings happening to me?” We can choose to adopt the attitude of Job and Paul:

We may not know how to explain those situations which is bringing pain or weariness to us, but one thing we can do is to believe that, since God is bigger in our situations, nothing is too hard for Him. Choose to take delight in the present situation, so that all glory may go to God when we are healed, or when the tide is all over.

What great love!

by Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Age does not matter - Part 2

by Monday, July 18, 2011

When God declares that today is the salvation for you, He does it without delay. Right now, some of you who are reading this may not have asked Jesus to come into your life before, or maybe you have never encounter God's love before. Today, I believe that it’s never coincidental that you come across this post. God wants me to tell you that He loves you, and, because of that great love He had for you and me, it drove Him to the cross.

For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.
Luke 19:10 (NIV)

Some of you may say: “Well, I don't have time. I'm busy with my schoolwork.” or “I am not ready yet.” Well, for me, I became a follower of Jesus because He loves me first, and, when He called me to Him, I realised that this is a kind of love that I can never find in someone else. Initially, I thought being a Christian means stepping into a religion. However, being a Christian is different. It means having an intimate relationship with God, like a Father and a child.

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
Ephesians 2:8 (NLT)

Because of this love relationship, I no longer regard being a believer of Jesus as a chore or something that it’s all about rules. I realised that it was not I who choose Jesus first; He found me even before I knew who He really is.

We love because He first loved us.
1 John 4:19 (NIV)

Being a believer of Jesus does not take up much time. Some of you may ask: “Do I need to do anything to go to heaven?” or “Can I really experience God's love just by accepting Him as my Lord and Saviour?”

Jesus not only died for people who believed in Him; He even died for those who persecute Him. Why? This is because He loved us too much that He wants us to join Him in heaven. Since the work was all finished on the cross, on our part, all we need to do, right now, is to open our heart, and say “Yes, Lord, I want to accept you as my personal Lord and Saviour.”

In fact, it says,
The message is very close at hand;
      it is on your lips and in your heart.”
And that message is the very message about faith that we preach: if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved. 
Romans 10:8-10 (NLT)

Through this verse above, it states:
  1. Right now, the message that you are reading now is so close to you- Just the distance of you and your computer screen!
  2. All you need to do, is to confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and you will be saved- you do not need to do anything!
  3.  After that, Jesus will come into your life! - Because everyone does wrong things, we need a Savior. So, being saved, means that Jesus has become your Savior and you are a precious child of God!

All you need to do is to say a simple prayer (sinner's prayer) and personally invite God in (Click THIS for guide to sinner's prayer).

So, coming back to the topic, age doesn't matter for someone to accept Jesus. Jesus not only died for adults; He died for everyone: young or old, strong or weak, male or female.

Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit.
1 Peter 3:18 (NLT)

I believe, at this time, God is starting to call people into His kingdom. If you are reading this right now, and you feel something different going on inside you, God is knocking at the doors of your heart, asking you: “Child, I miss you talking to me. Will you let me in?”

So, will you answer the call?
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