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.
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