The Joy Of Obedience

by Sunday, December 30, 2012

During this year, I remembered there was a season where a curfew was given to me, requiring me to be back home by 8pm. I believe everyone would agree here, that having a spirit of rebellion is never going to lead anyone to obey. Obviously, I didn't obey.

I felt the test of faith came when I was given ministry leave for 3 weeks (I was like on MC for 3 weeks and I wasn't required to go to church). Initially, I didn't understand why it was given to me. Back at home, every Saturday for those weeks, when the clock strikes 6, I would always question God why the leave was given to me when His desire was for me to go to church and grow closer with the Body of Christ. I wanted to be in church, and no one could stop me from being there, but in the end I chose to obey and stick to the leave that was given to me. I was quite frustrated once actually and I popped the question to God, “So God, do you want me out of this whole thing (No more going to church, leading the life the way I wanted to)?”

Now, when I look back, I'm actually quite thankful for this curfew period (imagine me saying this when I kept ranting to some of you in the past haha). I understood that God was working behind the scenes, and He was teaching me some of the most valuable lessons, like obedience, the grace of God, the importance of being real, and the most important of all, the Person of the Holy Spirit (I'll cover those in my next few posts, so stay tuned).

Touching on the topic of obedience, having experienced that curfew season, this was what God taught me about obedience in Him:

1) Obedience begins with taking that step of faith, believing that whatever God has commanded you to do is for a good cause. When God desires you to obey, it's not so much of Him asking you, “Do you understand the work of My hands?” Rather, it's more of Him asking, “Do you trust My heart?” 

2) Obedience requires humility on your part, being able to willingly say, “God, Your plans are better than mine. Even though I may not understand, because I know that You love me, I'll choose to obey.” 

3) Obedience brings you to uncertainty in the seen realm, sometimes thinking it's impossible that God could change the situation for the better, but in the unseen something exciting and good is taking place. Sometimes we have the tendency to forget that God delights in working the impossible in the most difficult of times.

My heart is brought to thankfulness because of the patience God has toward me. I'm thankful that God has placed different ones in the church that has encouraged and spur me on to rely on God and learn how to obey Him. Obedience ain't easy, but it isn't a bad word either. Obedience commands a blessing upon your life.

Thank God for all the lessons He taught me through all these days in the year of 2012, and, as much as this post will serve as a reminder for me to obey God in everything I do in the days ahead, it's my prayer that this post will bless you guys who are reading this too, and you'll be able to put these into application, finding the joy of obedience. Thankful that God has placed the Holy Spirit as my loving Teacher too (Don't stop teaching me Friend haha). God bless, and wherever you may be, have a happy new year! :)
Psalm 1:1-3 - Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers.

Worthy Of The Highest Praise

by Monday, December 24, 2012
Scripture Passage: Acts 16:16-40
Paul and Silas were severely flogged and thrown into prison. Even when they were in pain, they still prayed and sang hymns praising God. When I was in the midst of reading these verses, a spontaneous thought came to me, “I wonder how their voices sound like when they were singing and being in physical pain.”

Being in the condition where both of them were stripped and beaten, severely flogged, placed in the inner cell and having feet fastened to stocks, I don't think that's a good situation where they can have any nice singers' voice. If I was in a situation like them, I think I'll feel very cold, shivering like mad, in great pain, and constrained of my movements. That's seriously the best time for me to recuperate and rest mann.

If I was one of the other prisoners hearing Paul and Silas praising God, I believe (even though it's not written in the bible about that), I will be like, “Woah are these dudes nuts? Singing in that condition?” I think I may even laugh at the way they sing, because I can imagine that their voices ain't sounding nice.

I don't think Paul and Silas cleared their throats, making sure they had a nice voice before they started singing. They didn't care if they were embarrassed or being looked at. They didn't let their natural circumstance change their supernatural praise.

Even if their voices were reaching to the heavens, sounding ugly, God wasn't looking for a nice singers' voice; God was looking at their hearts.

Now, it's not this point that I'm bringing across, to “take heart - even if your voice sounds ugly, praise all the more louder! (Haha)” Outward appearances count to nothing if the inside of you isn't really praising the way you are showing on the outside.

I believe God is looking for true worshippers - those who will worship Him in Spirit and in truth. Those who sing praises that are more than a song. Those who eyes are fixed upon Jesus, and worship Him for who He is.

Even if your conditions are extremely bad - even when you go through harsh suffering periods and you can't bring yourself to praise God, your circumstances shouldn't shift your praise, because if worship is about yourself, wanting to feel good about the way you worship, you missed the point. Worship is about God - you praise God because He is worthy of your praises. Even if your situation feels like it's going against your praise, God remains worthy to be praised.

Praise God! For He is worthy of the highest praise!

The Faith Walk

by Monday, December 10, 2012

A week ago I had a pleasant night, with a nice dream accompanying it. Even though I couldn't recall the details of the dream, I remembered significantly that I saw this words on a white canvas in my dream:
And God is sovereign. Even though something looks to be in defeat at first, in the end you are walking towards victory.”
And I woke up with God speaking to me these words:
“Look upon Me - call upon My Spirit, and tap into the unseen. For the seen is temporary, but the unseen is eternal.”
Accompanying those words was a verse from Hebrews 11:
Hebrews 11:1 - Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 
From that day on,  I was led to read Romans 4 and Genesis 12 onwards. From those chunks of chapters, God has been using them to speak to me about my faith in Him.

From the time Abraham first received the words from God that he'll become a great nation and great blessing, all the way till he got a son from Sarah, he waited 25 years (He was 75 when God first spoke to him about the promise). 25 years of waiting! At that time, Sarah was already 99! Bearing Isaac? Haha I think I’ll also laugh like Abraham and Sarah if there’s any time I got that word from God.

I made an initial comment about Abraham, thinking that He was crazy because I can’t believe Abraham was so quick to leave at God's command even before the promise wasn't fulfilled. And the verse that wow-ed at my face was Genesis 12:9, when “Abram kept moving, steadily making his way south, to the Negev.” How can Abraham keep moving when Sarai (before God named her Sarah) was still childless? In natural and human’s perspective, it’s totally no way that Abraham and Sarah would have kids at such old age.

God began to change my perspective by shifting me to Romans 4. Through these verses, these spontaneous thoughts came:
If faith is all about you - what you can achieve and do with your own natural abilities, you've missed the whole point. 
Faith goes beyond yourself. Faith is all about learning to lean and trust in God - trusting and obeying in what He wants to do in, through and with you. Sometimes it seems foolish or impossible in natural eyes, but that's the whole point! God doesn't have the word “impossible” in His dictionary.
Even Moses looked upon his own flaws and kept stating those as excuses that God will never use him as His instrument for the Israelites. But God still did extraordinary miracles through him- the Red Sea parted, water came out from the rock, etc.

And I do fall prone to become like Moses sometimes. When I look at myself, I'll always give God the natural, human reaction - “God are you sure it's me? (Not that I'm making God to be a liar, but because I keep looking upon myself)

But this was when God made me realise:
“Faith is not about looking towards yourself and seeing how much you can do in the natural; faith is about looking towards Me and seeing how much I can do through you in the supernatural - a naturally supernatural lifestyle. Having faith in Me shouldn't constrain your life; it should expand your life!”
What’s so great about God is that He doesn't call us to be a superhuman. When you begin your Christian faith, He doesn't expect you to zoom all the way and demand you to have faith that can perform signs, wonders and miracles. He doesn't mock and laugh at you, and He doesn't compare you with other people, saying, “Wah that person has more faith than you, loser.” Sometimes we are the ones who call ourselves losers when God didn't even call us that. We don’t realise that God is patient with us – we just can’t be patient with ourselves sometimes (we go hard on ourselves).

Faith is a process and an adventurous journey that God desires for us to walk together with Him. When God asks you to go to step one, He doesn't expect you to fly to step 10 when you haven’t even begin moving towards step 1. Faith may cause you to step out of comfort zones, like Abraham who couldn't see the promise that He became a great nation after his death but yet still have to choose to head over to that land. But you aren't meant to walk the faith walk alone – God is and will be with you. So just believe in a Big Daddy God that lives inside of you and really know who your God is.

Hope this will bless your hearts and encourage your faith walks with Him too! :)

Child Of A Loving Daddy God

by Monday, November 26, 2012
This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!
Romans 8:15-17 (MSG)
During my quiet time just now, I was led to think about this question, “What does God think about me as His kid?” This spontaneous thought was triggered by a particular photo my mum pasted on my home’s living room wall, with some quotes by an anonymous author. It stated, “If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith in himself.”

To a family who doesn't show care and concern for a family member, when the child doesn't have his identity secured as a family member, gradually thoughts of, “Why I am part of this family” comes to his / her mind.

Similar to this situation, lack of faith and knowledge of your identity as a child of God will lead you to question your self-worth. Not running to the correct source would lead to condemnation and unworthiness, caused by the lies of the enemy, saying that “You were just another person God created and not created with a purpose here on earth.”

As cliché as it may seem to some, the constant counter towards those insecurity thoughts had to be through prayer and reading the bible – constant fellowship (communion) with God. The acceptance through faith, believing the finished work on the Cross and declaring the Lordship of Jesus Christ over our lives grants an open door for God’s Spirit to dwell within us and He confirms our identity as children of Daddy God.

These constant confirmations led me to affirm my identity as Daddy’s kid:

1) Even though I once considered myself as garbage, God considers me precious in His eyes. He fearfully and wonderfully made me in my mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13) and I’m His treasured masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10)
2) Even though I have weaknesses, with God’s help I can overcome them. I just have to humble myself and learn to lean and rely on Him (Philippians 4:13, Romans 8:37)
3) Even at times when I failed, I may be angry with myself and I fear trying again. But God always picks me up and calls me a mighty warrior and encourages me to try again (Judges 6). I am never left alone (Deuteronomy 31:6)
4) I may misinterpret God as an earthly fatherly figure. But I need to know that God is not a Daddy God I imagined Him to be sometimes. His love is unconditional and He is forever patient towards me (Romans 5:8).
5) I was created with a great purpose. God holds the best future of mine in His hands (Jeremiah 29:11).
Start to be in constant communion with the Spirit of God. Keep running to the treasured Word of God with expectancy, eagerness and childlike faith and let your identity be secured in God today. You are a precious child of God and He really really loves you a lot! :)
Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him.
Romans 12:1 (MSG)

"Child, I've never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love and more love!"

(Linked with Charlotte at Spiritual Sundays)

Rest In The LORD

by Tuesday, November 13, 2012
John, meanwhile, had been locked up in prison. When he got wind of what Jesus was doing, he sent his own disciples to ask, “Are you the One we've been expecting, or are we still waiting?” Matthew 11:2-3 (MSG)
During these few days while I was seeking God, He has been speaking to me about resting in Him. I was in a state of tiredness, and I came to a point where I needed to ask myself, “Why am I so tired and drained physically and emotionally when I'm settling harsh issues?”

God brought me back to Matthew 11, and when I was reading through, this thought of irony came to my mind. Before John was put into prison, he was baptising people and preaching about repentance. He was preparing the way for Jesus, and He knew that Jesus was the one who was to come (Matthew 3:13-17). How is it possible that John can ask Jesus such a question when there was already confirmation?

I feel that sometimes we can be like John. When we are pushed to our limits, and we feel so emotionally drained because of so many things at hand, we may ask the question like John did. And I realized this - when I'm drained and exhausted with doing the work that Christ has commissioned me to do, it's either most probably because I'm doing this with my own strength, or because I did not encourage myself in the LORD after those discouragements I heard.
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
Matthew 11:28-30 (MSG)
For those who are experiencing a burnout currently, feeling that strain all over, or even have been hurt by people in the process of doing things for the LORD, I believe God wants to draw us back to walk and work with Him again - to realize that we are not doing the things He called us to do based on our own strength; we move in the grace of God.
“Soak and immerse yourselves in the river of My love and grace. I'm here to heal and restore broken hearts today. I grant rest to those I love. Don't focus on the problems you have at hand. Focus on Me. I WILL walk with you and bring you through. You are not meant to work and walk alone; I'll be with you always. Run to Me and lean upon Me.” says the LORD.
Daddy God has every single one of us in the palms of His hands, cradling us in His loving, big arms. Rest in the arms of grace. Stay close to Jesus and rest in the LORD. :)
He makes me lie down in [fresh, tender] green pastures; He leads me beside the still and restful waters.
Psalm 23:2 (AMP)

Simply Worship!

by Friday, November 02, 2012
(Picture credits to The Outreach Singapore)
Revival comes with a price. Are you willing to pay the price?
Just want to take this opportunity to blog about a stay-over workshop I went last Friday to Saturday, called “Simply Worship”. It was a workshop meant to equip musicians and lead worshippers in preparation for revival, and I’m really honored and thankful to be there in the workshop, because the presence of God was so strong in that place. There was no way I could doubt that He showed up, and I’m assured once again, that God is crazily extremely awesome!

During the camp, God brought my focus back to the heart of worship. Before the workshops began, I was reading the foreword in the booklet, and it stated, “Worship is not just about technical skills, neither is it a performance. It is not about us in the first place but about bringing the congregation into the presence of GOD and deep into the Holy of Hollies.” It really spoke deep into my heart, and I believe it was the foundation of setting the right attitude before worship. The heart of worship should just be to please the Father and the Father alone, and at the same time, bring the congregation deeper in love with Jesus.

The workshops were really awesome. The technical parts of singing were covered (since I chose vocals). I learnt how to use models to choose songs, team dynamics, using various tools like visual aids (I was quite surprised that visual aids could be used! Haha…) and how to work with my worship team. The spiritual parts of worship were also covered, like the heart of worship (the fact that the number of instruments and skill level you are in doesn’t matter, etc.) and the power of praise. One verse that stood out, which I thought was also the theme verse for me during the entire workshop was John 4:24, that “We worship God in spirit and in truth.”

For day 1, during the sessions where we had to break out into vocals and instrumentals, my vocalist instructor (who said after the camp that she doesn’t like teaching HAHA) told us that, besides the song that was indicated for us, we also need to select another song. Initially I was like thinking to myself, “Huh so many Christian songs how to choose?” Because I was also too tired, I asked God to help me select a song. Then, when I was sleeping, I dreamt that I was leading worship at a white place, and everyone was singing the lyrics of divine exchange! And for day 2, we broke into our teams and we had to decide our role, on whether to be the lead or the co-lead. And I took the lead and decided to trust that the dream is from God.

I will frankly say that initially, when I was given the role of the lead worshipper, I was super nervous because I had stage fright, and I needed to ask God to help me overcome this. I really thank God, that during the practice sessions with my band, the instructors helped me a lot by giving me practical advices, care for my band members, and God also assured me to go with His strength. He reminded me, “Joy, you draw close to My presence first. And as you draw closer to Me, I’ll use you to draw people nearer to Me – into the Holy of Hollies.” During the last worship rehearsal of Day 2, when the instructors were not around, I just decided to whack and not be bothered by my fears anymore, and halfway, when I was singing, I had a word from the Lord, and when I spoke out a few words, I became so overwhelmed by His presence and love, and I started crying. I didn’t know why initially, but later I knew it was the Lord - He was overwhelming me with His love for His people.

Before the real thing came (later I’ll elaborate), everyone was just worshipping the Lord, and He visited us! The Pastor shared that he was touched by God while a dude was praying over him and the both of them roared in the Spirit, and the female Pastor gave a shout of triumph! It was like a Rodney Howard Browne (RHB) revival service, and there were breakouts of Holy Spirit manifestations! Everytime when we feel the tangible presence of Jesus, it should bring us back to reveal the character of God, and bring us into deeper revelation and intimacy with Him.

The massive one that really hit alot of us who were there, and I’m still overwhelmed till now, is the part after I prayed for a fellow brother-in-Christ (The Lord led me to pray for him). I was invited to join the circle when a brother and 3 sisters-in Christ, and we were joining hands, praying. Halfway through, I felt led to pray for the sister whom was beside me and I was holding her hands, and I felt that the Lord was totally taking over because I didn’t even need to prepare what words I should say (normally when the Lord leads me most of the times it’ll be like that), and she began weeping in the Spirit. Then I felt such a great intensity of heat upon my hands, and when I didn’t hold their hands anymore, I felt sweat all over my hands mann! The room was air conditioned, but I felt the fire of the Lord! Holy laughter broke out thereafter too! I lay down on the floor after a while, and coincidentally a sister who lay down with me felt the same thing – that we were lying down on green pastures! Praise the Lord!

And here comes the REAL thing, when our band had to be on stage and present the 2 songs. The instructors later decided that we should present only 1 song. Before I went up the stage, I prayed and told God to take center stage, and I knew that it wasn’t about me but Him and Him alone. And when I was up the stage, I was singing halfway and I felt the fire of God on the stage and my hands were trembling under the power! Now this was the tricky part for me: How do I stop my hands? (Haha) I managed to stop for a while so that I can show the hand signals, but, after the whole worship session, one of my band members told me she thought I was under the power of God and was not doing the free worship hand signal! Haha it’s super funny, but I really thank God that He gave me a vision, and the words to speak out to the congregation!  (One thing I learnt too was to structure my sentences and not speak too much hahaha sorry sorry)

Thank God for those 2 days mann! And I believe these are precious encounters that you and I can experience with Jesus everyday! All you need to do is to hunger and desire for more of Him, and God will surely fill you up! Know that, when God touches you, it’s not for you to get a feeling; we get to know God better through our encounters with Him!

I learn that God is a fun God, and He loves to dwell with His people! Thankful for a God that loves me dearly so much! :D
How much are you willing to desire and hunger? How desperate are you to see revival come? I won’t settle for anything less because I know I can expect more from a Big Daddy God. There must be more than this! Come, Jesus come. In you beautiful timing, come…  #seasonforbreakthroughs
My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people.
Ezekiel 37:27 (NIV)
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
Psalm 84:10 (NIV)

“Are My People Ready?”

by Friday, October 26, 2012

I sense in my heart an urgency - a strong voice thundering repetitively in my spirit, “I'm coming back soon...” After seeing the news of the most recent earthquake hit upon Indonesia, the Lord brought me to this verse:

“Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.”
Matthew 24:7-8 (NIV)

The earthquake was a sign that Jesus is coming back soon. Sometimes we can get so complacent that we forget that He is coming back for us. We drink, make merry, celebrate, and live as though we thought we still have a lot more time to waste.

Are you ready for the coming of the Lord? The heart of the Father beats out this cry, “Are my people ready for my coming?”

There are still people out there not knowing that there is a God who loves them and desires to pour out His love upon them. They are like sheep without shepherd (Matthew 9:36), searching for the truth. This is why Jesus said that the harvest is plenty, but the workers are few (Matthew 9:37). God wants those who know the truth to lead his people into the truth - only found in one man, Jesus Christ (John 14:6).

God is not searching for qualified people to come into his service. Preaching His Gospel is not about eloquence. God is looking for people that will simply say, “God, send me. I will go where You want me to go.” God does not call the qualified; He qualifies the called.

May God place in your hearts today the urgency of the call, and may you be compelled by His love to share the Gospel at all cost.

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 1:9 (NLT)

“What are you waiting for? I have commanded you to be strong and courageous! Just as nothing separated you from my love (Romans 8:39), let not your fears, doubts, and worries separate my people from my love.”

Who Am I? Yet He Sees Me

by Friday, October 26, 2012

For my part, I am going to boast about nothing but the Cross of our Master, Jesus Christ. Because of that Cross, I have been crucified in relation to the world, set free from the stifling atmosphere of pleasing others and fitting into the little patterns that they dictate.
Galatians 6:14 (MSG)

If I will boast, I shall only boast about the Cross. I don’t boast that I am perfect, for I am not holy after all. In fact, I’m a sinner, a person who does not even deserve forgiveness. Who am I that God should send His Son to die for my sins? But yet He saw my plight. He saw that I was lost, weak, broken and helpless - like a lost sheep without a shepherd.

My life is like water spilled out on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again. Who am I that God should look upon me and find ways just to bring me back to him? Yet He saw me and called me precious. He brought me back through the death of His Son, Jesus (2 Samuel 14:14).

God didn’t see my past lawlessness and said I was beyond redemption. He didn’t give up on me though there were times I felt unworthy because of the many sins I committed. All He told me was this, “If you are Holy, you wouldn’t need my Son. If you are sinless, you wouldn’t need me.”

There were times that I didn’t believe in myself. Times when I thought I thought would never be used by anyone because of the junk I got into. I told God, “I’m so sorry that You have to always clear my mess. I’m sorry that I am always getting into trouble. Forgiving me is more than enough. Don’t use me; choose someone else.”  I thought I didn’t fit into the bill – God’s list of “Chosen people to be used.” I wasn’t like Noah who always walked blamelessly before the Lord. But I heard God’s assuring voice, “I didn’t love you because you were good enough to fit into the bill of ‘worthiness’; I love you just as you are. I can turn your mess into a message – I am God Almighty.”

Thankful that God accepted me just as I am. Thankful that God believes in me. No matter how many times I failed, He strengthens and upholds me by His right hand (Isaiah 41:10). With a heart of gratitude I thank Jesus for His love. With a humble heart I exalt and praise His name. I thank God for He is Lord, Creator of the universe, and yet still my Father. Where would I be without Him?

For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the depths of the grave.
Psalm 86:13 (NIV)

When Love Leads

by Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Ephesians 5:1-2 (NKJV)
If you have watched a revival video (Like someone would lay hands on someone and they will fall in the Spirit, be healed of their illness, etc.), been to a healing crusade or revival service when you have witnessed the power of God before, or read numerous verses of the life stories of Jesus, apostle Paul (healing through handkerchief in Acts 19:11-12) and apostle Peter (Healing through shadows in Acts 5:15-16), I believe you will know what I mean here. Watching revival and testimony videos, and particularly the chapters in the bible that shows different ones, for instance Jesus and the apostles performing miracles, would never fail to capture my attention. When I watched and read about all these people performing miracles, being set free of bondage, healed physically and emotionally through people, the first statement that I told God was this, “God I want to do that too!”

Overtime, as I begin walking with Jesus each day, he reveals to me through His Word in 2 Corinthians 6:11-13, that walking and moving in the supernatural first required me to open my heart to let Him work in, through and with me. This has always been a statement that God has been reminding me. I need to be open to be teachable, to believe in what God believes in, abide and remain in Him and walk closely with Him.

As I begin to open my heart to be teachable, God began to correct me (I really thank God teaching and being patient with me). Though I was all fascinated, fired up and all cool about walking and moving in the supernatural, God began to question the root. 1 Corinthians 13 addresses the issue of the root clearly:
If I had the gift of prophecy and if I understood all of God's secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn't love others, I would be nothing.
1 Corinthians 13:2 (NLT)
I began to realize that those people who could move in the supernatural did not do it out of fascination. They weren’t drawing attention to themselves because they realized that, even if they could do all that miracles, they were doing it because of God’s enablement. God enables them and works through them because He loves His beloved people. I believe with my whole heart that God can heal, restore and work through me, but like what the verse stated above, if I do not have love for His people, what’s the use of being able to perform all that miracles?

Sometimes I do fall into that mindset of fascination, that I feel all great that I am walking and moving in the supernatural because it’s really crazy and out of the ordinary. Frankly speaking, it’s really all cool. Friends, today I believe that we need to go back to question the root of our desire. Do we desire to walk and move in the supernatural because it’s all cool, or because we just want to manifest God’s love through us and touch His people? Glory shouldn’t be going to us when we can walk and move in the supernatural, because we are not the source; glory should be given to the Only source, Jesus.

“Beloved children, I am enabling you to walk and move in the supernatural, not because I have all power in heaven and I am showing off to them through you; I am empowering you because I love you and I love them. When I enable you to do so, just go out and love My people.”

Open your heart and let God work through you. All in all, let your foundation of walking and moving in the supernatural be rooted in God’s love for His people. Let love lead you to do what God is enabling you to do today. :)
Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy.
1 Corinthians 14:1 (ESV)

“Come Away With Me”

by Saturday, September 29, 2012
The Lord isn't really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.
2 Peter 3:9 (NLT)
God placed dreams in my heart that is centered towards my sphere of influence. He gave me faith to believe for their salvation. His love moved my heart so much, and I was once praying with so much passion, because my eyes were fixed on what God believes in.

As I said above, “I was once praying with so much passion, because my eyes were fixed on what God believes in.” I thought I still believed in what God believed in, that He desires for them to know Him. But as I was brought back to the times I prayed with so much faith (mostly God given and ignited faith), I looked at myself now, and I asked myself what caused the change? I wasn’t that passionate in prayer for them anymore. Why?

I was brought back to this fact, that it’s not that His love for them changed, it’s just because I didn’t see a change in that situation, and it brought me to feel tired. I stopped believing in what God believed in, and the tiredness in my soul wasn’t exchanged for God’s faith. My soul was unconsciously swayed to the path of giving up, and I gradually didn’t believe as much as I believed before.

This week, I felt God reigniting a faith inside of me again. Through the dreams He gave me, the reminders that was given through my friends and leaders’ prayer – even mere conversations, God was making it so obvious to me, “I want to restore broken dreams. I want to reignite faith into your soul. Turn your eyes back towards what I believe in.”

(Before I was typing this chunk above, I asked God for a word that will encourage you people who are reading this now. And I’m so thankful that God is an Encourager, and He encouraged me through these words below too!)

“My beloved people, why are your souls casted into despair? What made you stop believing in the dreams I have upon the people I have placed within you? Dreams that you have lost hope upon, dreams that you have ceased to believe - I am about to restore broken, shattered dreams. Look towards me – towards My heart.

Come away with Me! See what I believe about My beloved! Everyone whom I call My masterpiece and My precious ones - these are the people I love. I am outrageously, passionately in love with My people! See the amount of love I have bestowed on My beloved people, and let faith begin to arise in your soul so that you will be able to believe in what I believe again!”

Friends, God has never ceased loving the people around you. That unsaved family member, friend or relative of yours still remains dear to His heart till today. God has never given up on them, so why are you looking towards hopeleness? His heart still breaks and weeps for them. His heart is moved in compassion for them.

And isn’t it so awesome that when God sees us giving up on that person’s salvation, He didn't say, “Oh so you give up on that person already? Then I’ll give up on Him too.” The outrageous, passionate, unconditional love that He has compels Him to love and believe even more.

Turn your eyes back to Him, friends. Turn your eyes back to the time when you once believed so strongly. That instance of faith wasn’t a hype; that was how much God wants you to believe in that person! If you can’t bring yourself to believe, ask God for His faith! If you never have a dream for someone, ask God to show you someone who doesn’t know / hasn’t acknowledged the need for Jesus. “I dare you to believe! I dare you to believe for the impossible! I am not limited by impossibilities, but by the smallness of your minds towards who I am. Come away with Me! Cling on to Me! Dare to dream and dream again!” says the Lord.

Is his love worn threadbare? Has his salvation promise burned out?
Psalm 77:8 (MSG) 
"What do you mean, 'If I can'?" Jesus asked. "Anything is possible if a person believes."
Mark 9:23 (NLT)

My Prayer Was Answered!

by Monday, September 17, 2012

↑↑↑↑ The Inheritance (The Father's Love Letter) - Graham Cooke ↑↑↑↑
See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him.
1 John 3:1 (NLT)
While I was reflecting on the goodness of Jesus for me today, He brought me back to the time in 2005, when I was Primary 5 then. That particular day, I came back from school and went to the shoe rack to find my slippers. It was a common shoe rack where the children would put their sandals and casual footwear. No matter how I searched high and low to find that slippers, I only found 1 side.

Because my mum bought that for me a few days ago, plus I didn’t have any other shoe to wear, it was precious to me. I cried like crazy, hiding myself under the blanket and asking Jesus, “Where’s my other slipper? Why it went missing?”

Right now that I was brought back to the incident, I felt it was quite hilarious for me to cry over a lost side of slippers. It’s not only about crying; I believe I was weeping over the loss of that lost pair of slippers! But as a 11 year old kid then, I didn’t care much. I just want my slippers back.

Miraculously, the next day, I found that this boy was wearing my slippers! I knew that it was mine because, firstly, he was wearing one of my slipper and another sandal (which obviously didn’t match), and the size was a unique size that I believed didn’t fit him at all. I took back that lost side of slipper and went smiling away. I didn’t really thank God for helping me find that lost side of slippers. I was just happy that I found it back.

Now, my heart is brought to thankfulness and gratitude. Thinking about this, God could actually not find that slipper for me. It’s a small thing anyway. But God loves me and He cares for the little things in my life, even if it meant that one lost side of the slipper.

Friends, God loves you a lot! He sees you beautiful and He cares for the little things in your life! Even if you are far from Him, it can’t change the measure of His love for you, because you are His masterpiece, and His love will never change for you. He desires an intimate relationship with you, like a Daddy and a child. Daddy God wants to come close to you. On your part, are you willing to take that bold step and open your heart to let Him in? You’re My beloved,” says the Lord.

Thank You Jesus for loving me. Thank You Jesus for dying on the Cross for me. You can actually choose not to do it, but because you saw me and your beloved people, that crazy love drove you to the Cross. Even though right now I'm still in the midst of grasping the full extent of Your love for me, so help me and give me a revelation of that great love. I praise You and thank You for simply being who you are – a loving Daddy God.
Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.
1 Peter 5:7 (AMP)

Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
Psalm 23:6 (NIV)
(Linking with Charlotte at Spiritual Sunday)

Harvest Time!

by Tuesday, September 04, 2012
You know the saying, 'Four months between planting and harvest.' But I say, wake up and look around. The fields are already ripe for harvest.
John 4:35 (NLT)
I’m so thankful for the people God has placed in my life. Thank God for using me to touch His people. I know that without God, I can do nothing. I thank God that at times when I don’t believe in myself, He believes in me. If it was not for Jesus’s finished work on the Cross and the many people God has placed in my life as a source of encouragement and pillar of strength for my walk in Him, I believe I wouldn’t be where I am today. I wouldn’t even be typing these out! Glory to Jesus!

For the past week it was the happiest days of my life. I believe the heavens were rejoicing even more than I was. Before last Saturday, my schoolmate rededicated her life to Jesus! I was so happy because she was actually a random friend that God ordained for me to meet. I will say it’s super random, but yet a divinely appointed friend relationship that God has planned out for me.

Last Sunday, which was a few days ago, my older sister rededicated her life to Christ too! I am so overwhelmed and happy for her! From the past month I have been inviting her to visit my church and come for outreaches just to have fun, but she was busy. Randomly, during this week, I decided to text my brother and sisters to invite them to church. It was only this Sunday that my older sister decided to come and visit, and I thank God for touching her. She felt God’s presence and didn’t really know why it was happening to her, and I thank God that He loves her and works in mysterious ways, far more than I could ever imagine!

Also, yesterday, I went to my schoolmate’s home (which was the girl stated above) and was just causally talking to her younger sister. I felt the Holy Spirit prompting me to share the Gospel with her, as well as how God has touched my life. It took me a while just to share, and I thank God that it was all worthwhile because she gave her life to Christ for the first time! Thank You Jesus!

God spoke to me, “Joy, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest! Look at the multitudes at the valley of decision! Every unsaved person I have placed in your life is part of that field. Never let your past rejections stop you from sharing the Good News about me. I change hearts and move people with My love. Be sensitive to My spirit and prompting…”

Just want to encourage those of you who are reading this today. Maybe you have unsaved family members, relatives, colleagues and friends that you have been constantly praying for their salvation. Maybe you felt tired over these years and you ask God why He isn’t doing anything for them. Friends, just as how God loves us, He loves them the same. Some of them may still need you to cover them under prayer so that their hearts will be opened, but for others God wants to use you to speak into their lives. Maybe you may feel awkward and ask yourself how you can break out this Good News to them. I pray that God will grant you boldness to share the Gospel without fear, because the Gospel is just that simple, and since you have the perfect love in your heart, which is Jesus (1 John 4:18), why do you fear?

Or perhaps this is your first time visiting this site and you have never heard about Jesus, or you have heard about Jesus for countless times. I just want to share with you that God loves you a lot! He loves you so much, that even before you knew Him, He knew you and He sent His one and only son, Jesus to die on the Cross for your sin. If not for Jesus, I won’t be where I am today. Even at times when I am feeling down, or when I am going through a rough season, I know I can stay joyful, because Jesus is with me, giving me the strength to press on and He has won the victory for my situations. God is our Heavenly Father, but He is not the Daddy as some of you imagine Him to be. Though He is God, He loves us so much, to the point that He pursues us and desires to have a relationship with us, like a Father and child relationship. He is different, and He really loves you a lot! (Do click on this link Prayer Line page to find out more!)

This is my prayer today, Lord, that You will release a spirit of boldness upon Your people today so that they will share Your Good News without fear. Help us to understand that You are doing this with us, and we are never alone. Help us to be so sensitive to Your spirit and to know the times we are living in right now. Without You Jesus, I can do nothing…
Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision.
Joel 3:14 (NIV)

Revelation Of God's Holiness

by Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
1 Peter 1:13-16 (NIV)
The Lord brought me back to the time when I asked Him, “God, give me a revelation of Your holiness. Show me what it means by being set apart for You.” I recalled the happenings of the day after I made that prayer. I would be more sensitive to the convictions of the Holy Spirit and I will not make decisions based on my own fleshly desires and actions, but based on what God wanted me to do. Whenever I did something that was not aligned with the will of God, I would hear a voice inside of me, which I presumed was the Holy Spirit, crying in the inside of me. At that point of time, if I did not listen to God but I chose to do my own will, I would feel sad, but that sorrow would cause me to repent because I realized His kindness which led me to repentance.

As I began to ask God for the reason why He brought me back to this prayer I said months before, He gave me this statement, "The fear of the Lord." That statement ringed in my ears for a while, and it suddenly dawned on me that the recent decisions I had made was not aligned in His will. All of a sudden I found I lost a certain fear of the Lord because I was following my own desires now more than His. I followed the path of temptations that came facing toward me, and I bore a “God will surely forgive me” attitude, abusing the grace He has upon me. I felt so convicted, and I prayed, “God, restore to me the fear of the Lord and give me a revelation of Your holiness once again. I repent of what I have done and I’m tired of being complacent. Holy Spirit let me be so sensitive to Your presence once again.”

God told me, “Remember your first love and the things that you did at first. Don’t grow weary in doing good, for at the proper time you will reap a harvest if you do not give up. I’m looking for a bride without spot and blemish – a bride who has made herself ready for the wedding. Is my Bride ready? Is the Church watching and praying?”

Does God’s mercy make me become complacent just because I accepted Jesus? Does that mean I live my life to please my own flesh just because I have become righteous by faith? I believe being the Bride of Christ, without spot and blemish, means being perfect. When I think of perfection I think of a scenario when I scored for my test. Getting full marks means a perfect score; getting just one mistake makes the score imperfect. In that case, I won’t even be perfect because even if I have sinned one time in my life, I have missed the mark. How, then, can anyone make the mark to be the Bride of Christ?

God revealed to me, “The perfection of my Bride is not perfection in doing; it’s about perfection in being. Each day, it is your prayer to become more like Christ; not to only do to become more like Christ. Perfection in doing is behaving like God, leading you to lose the grace to accept your faults; perfection in being is becoming more and more like Christ, having the dependency on Me so that You can do my Will.”

This is my prayer today, that You’ll restore to us the fear of the Lord, give us a revelation of Your holiness and help us understand what it means to be set apart for You alone.
For your Maker is your husband--the LORD Almighty is his name--the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.
Isaiah 54:5 (NIV) 
But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing.
James 1:4 (AMP) 
Christ's love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness.
Ephesians 5:25-27 (MSG)

God Loves Us All!

by Monday, August 20, 2012
Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!
1 John 3:1 (NKJV)
Recently, there was this dear friend of mine was praying for me. When she prayed, she told me, “God wants me to tell you that He loves you.” It was followed by a series of “I love you” repetitions from God. Since that day till now, I will hear His voice repeating in my ears, “I love you, Joy. I love you.” Even when I got the point that He loves me, He never stops telling me that He loves me.

God is never tired of telling and showing His children that He loves them. Even when we, as His children, know that He loves us, He just loves us so much that He can't stop expressing to us how dear we are to Him. His love is just so overwhelming!
Even when I'm a sinner, He has so much compassion on me.
Even when I keep failing Him, He remains patient with me.
God loves me, therefore He disciplines me, not by punishing, but by love.
God loves me, therefore He gets excited when I'm taking the time off to spend it with Him. I'll feel that He is sad whenever I end my conversations with Him because He'll miss hearing my voice.
God loves me, therefore He never grows tired of repetitively telling me, “I love you.”
Friend, God loves you so much! You're His beloved, a masterpiece in whom He takes constant delight in! Allow His love to sink deep in your life and secure your identity in Him today. God really really loves you a lot! ❤
This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
1 John 4:10 (NIV)
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39 (NIV)

Lasting Fruits

by Tuesday, August 07, 2012
As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!”

 “Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.”
Mark 13:1-2 (NIV) 
While the disciple was drawing Jesus’s attention to the massive stones and magnificent buildings, I believe he was extremely overwhelmed at the beauty and structure of the buildings, and he was expecting to get a response from Jesus, telling him, “Yeah, that’s really nice. What a beautiful sight.” Instead, Jesus gave this unexpected response, “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down”

These verses reminded me of a man named Alexander the great. He was a great Macedonian king who conquered many kingdoms, had a great army, a sharp sword, conquests and riches. While he was at his deathbed he gave his last wishes to the generals. One of his last wishes was this: “I want both my hands be kept dangling out of my coffin. I wish people to know that I came empty handed into this world and empty handed I go out of this world.” 

What an irony for the king to say these wishes! Imagine him being a great king, highly regarded by the Macedonians, and making a request to keep his hands dangling out of the coffin. But yet when he was at his deathbed, he came to a point of realisation, that no matter how much wealth and conquests he achieved while being on this earth, he will still leave this earth empty handed.

My friends, today I believe it is the day where we need to question ourselves the kind of fruits that we are building here on earth. What can we bring with us when we die? We can’t bring along our wealth, properties or our favourite bag. There are only 2 things that will never fade away and they will last for eternity even when we physically die, and they are God’s Word and souls:
Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
Matthew 24:35 (NKJV)

Your word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.
Psalm 119:89 (NIV)

And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
Matthew 10:28 (NKJV)

Take notice! I tell you a mystery (a secret truth, an event decreed by the hidden purpose or counsel of God). We shall not all fall asleep [in death], but we shall all be changed (transformed). In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the [sound of the] last trumpet call. For a trumpet will sound, and the dead [in Christ] will be raised imperishable (free and immune from decay), and we shall be changed (transformed).
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 (AMP)
“Watch out what you are building in your life. Building fruits that are temporal may seem grand and marvelous on the outside, pleasuring to the eye, but these are fruits that won’t last. My child, stop wasting time; start being highly purposeful and build fruits that will last for eternity.

This is my prayer today Lord, that I will grow to become highly purposeful and choose to build lasting fruits that will grant me eternal joy.
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit —fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.
John 15:16 (NIV)

His Love, My Boast

by Thursday, July 19, 2012
But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)
Ephesians 2:4-5 (NLT)
Since Saturday's encounter till now, I have been standing in awe of God's love for me. No matter how much I don't believe in myself, He always reassures me and bring me to a point where His sweet embrace and loving voice will cover me, and I'll never forget what He spoke, “My beloved Joy, don't let your weaknesses crumple you Call, for My love is more than enough to sustain you. I desire to use you, my child. Be open to me and let me work in, through and with you.”
If we are faithless [do not believe and are untrue to Him], He remains true (faithful to His Word and His righteous character), for He cannot deny Himself.
2 Timothy 2:13 (AMP)
I don't know how I can express this. I think it was from the feedback that my friends gave me that I realized I have been using the word crazy, and I really think that the love of Jesus is so crazy - so crazy that at the thought of it overwhelms my soul. The thought that never fails to blow my mind away is this: even at times when I failed or walked away from Him, He stays the same and His love always remains.

I know I found a love that changed my life forever - something that is so out of the ordinary and it was what could not find in this world today. No matter how hard I may try to deny, I can never deny my experience with this special love: Jesus. And I know that no matter how I try to boast my love for Jesus, it can never amount to His precious love for me.
Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved.
John 13:23 (NKJV)
I want to be like the disciple John who boasts in my love for Jesus, because I cannot even compare my love for Him. My love for Him can't strengthen me in my weakness; His love can. This is my prayer today Lord, that Your love becomes my boast.

The Generation He Seeks

by Tuesday, July 03, 2012

I guess this is a word in season that God has for me. Even when I was typing this post out today, I felt the Spirit of God compelling me and moving me to change. This is also when I realize that it is not of me but from God.
Thus says the Lord:
“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,
Let not the mighty man glory in his might,
Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;
But let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me,
That I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.
For in these I delight,” says the Lord.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 (NKJV)
1) God is not looking for a generation who knows information, but seeks revelation.
  • An information you acquire doesn't change you; a revelation you seek moves you to change. Revelation is much more than just acquiring information. Revelations compels you to move and feel like Him.
  • Just knowing the heart of the Father won’t move you to change unless you have a revelation of His heart that will begin to move your heart to break and move like Him for His people.
  • An information only allows you to talk deep; a revelation brings you to walk deep
God is looking for a generation that will not just talk deep, but walk deep. Many can speak, but few will be willing to step out of their comfort zones. Many can acquire information through intense study, but revelation comes from the spirit of God. You can only acquire revelation when you allow the Holy Spirit to reveal to you and open your eyes.

Knowing the TRUTH shall set you free (John 8:32). Many people can hear the truth but will never be changed. People who are really set free due to knowing the truth are the ones who got the revelation, that truth is a person, and His name is Jesus (John 14:6).
I will run in the way of your commandments when you enlarge my heart!
Psalm 119:32 (ESV)
2) God is looking for a generation who remains open to Him.
  • The wisdom of men cannot amount to the foolishness of God (1 Corinthians 1:25). What more when God is wise!
  • It's never about the eloquence you have. As long as you are open to let God use you, He can do great things through you.
  • The more you surrender to God, and the more you open your heart to Him, the greater Jesus will be and the lesser you become. (John 3:30).
I came to a point of realization that when I come clean before God and open myself to Him, these were the greatest encounters I had with Him. It was not just a feeling, but a evident manifestation of the Holy Spirit. This was the time I knew that my fears, problems, sickness, weariness isn’t that important and big as it seemed to be. All it became was not how much I could do with what I have, but what I could do with what God could do through me. It was either less of me and more of God, or none of me and all of God. The more we open ourselves to God, the more God can do through us. The point is the willingness on our part to be open to God 100%.
Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.
Psalm 2:8 (NIV)

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14 (NIV)
3) God is looking for a generation that will never stay satisfied in where they are.
  • The secret to walk in deeper intimacy with Jesus is to never stay satisfied at our current state, knowing that we can walk even deeper and closer with God.
  • The secret to have a greater passion for the things of God is to never stay satisfied with the current fire we have, knowing that it can ignite and grow bigger.
  • The secret into getting our Father's house filled is to never stay satisfied with the current saved souls that are around us, knowing that there are still lost souls out there who have yet to know the love of Jesus.
For it is only when we are not satisfied at the way things are, knowing that there is room for more, will it begin to move us and ask for more. C'mon friends God is not a small God that we can only ask Him for small things. Lift up you faith and expectation and begin to ask God for even greater and walk even deeper with Him!

Praying that we will be a generation that is so sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and be a revivalist who shakes the culture of the world and turn it into the culture of Jesus. All I have is but a heart and one life. Still, use me mightily and lead my heart, O God. Lead me in your footsteps and let me be moved to change.

“My Child, I Believe In You”

by Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I was just taking some time to reflect on how I actually thought about myself. Given the way I normally react on the inside of me when people tell me things like, “You can do it. We believe in you,” that kind of conversations lead me to doubt my ability and capacity. I find that I am a person who is not confident of myself. I always ask myself, “Am I that great for people to believe in me?” Subconsciously, occasionally that would be the way I react when God calls me.

It was not that I didn’t believe God could use me. It was not that I didn’t want to obey the Call. It was just that I was just too doubtful of myself. But it was also through these times when I question my ability that will lead God to correct and teach me, “Joy, the moments when you are fearful of the things that I have called you to do, these are the same moments you are maximizing your weaknesses and minimizing the grace which I could let you rely upon. People may believe in your potential, but some of them are not even aware: they believe in you because they are looking at Me in you!”
A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit. The Spirit of the Lord will rest on him— the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of might, the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord— and he will delight in the fear of the Lord. He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears; but with righteousness he will judge the needy, with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth; with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked.
Isaiah 11:1-4 (NIV)

Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.
Daniel 11:32 (NKJV)
For those who think they are not wise, knowledgeable or eloquent enough to do what God wants you to do, God says that when you ask for anything in His name, according to His will, you will receive (John 16:24). God is going to equip you with supernatural boldness and faith to enable you to not fear and doubt in your potential. He is going to give you an understanding of His reality that He wants to use you for greater works.“The devil knows how much you want to serve Him, but he knows your weakness, and most of the time he will lie and lead you to doubt in your own capacity. But know who I am!” says the Lord. “Lift up your faith and believe!”
But if it is of God, you will not be able to stop or overthrow or destroy them; you might even be found fighting against God!
Acts 5:39 (AMP)
“I will pour out a spirit of fearlessness and boldness upon My people. They will stand strong and do the works I have commissioned them to do, for they will have an understanding that I have opened a door that no one can shut. Their works no one shall be able to overthrow – not even the devil. So take heart child. Do not fear and stand strong!”

Friend, you who are reading this now, I don’t know if you had the same occurrences as I had, but just like how God encourages me, I too want to encourage you with this, “God believes in you, and He wants to use you.” All you need to do is this, “Be open and let God work in, through and with you.” Let this be your checklist for identifiable moments when you doubt in yourself. Hope that as you read this it will challenge you run for what He has called you at all costs! :)

To Fight; Not To Quit

by Monday, June 18, 2012

These few weeks have been a rather rough week for me. Just as I felt screwed up at the earlier part of the week, God told me that He wants to continue moulding and shaping my character. “My beloved Joy, be faithful in the little now, and staying faithful means continuing on to fight your battle and not give up. I want you to stay on in your battle. Don't quit!”

During my devotions God brought me to the book of Job. These particular verses stood out so much for me:
Behold, you have instructed many, and you have strengthened the weak hands. Your words have held firm him who was falling, and you have strengthened the feeble knees. But now it is come upon you, and you faint and are grieved; it touches you, and you are troubled and dismayed. Is not your [reverent] fear of God your confidence and the integrity and uprightness of your ways your hope?
Job 4:3-6 (AMP)
Before this battle came blowing at me, I wondered how God has used me to strengthen the people around me, but now when it came to me, I wanted to give up so badly. I thank God for telling me to stay strong. God will never place me in a trial just to mock at me when I keep failing; He wants me to rely on His strength and emerge strong. Fearing God should be my source of confidence.

Also, God asked me to hear the sermon preached by Pastor Philip Mantofa, titled “Jesus - Before 30”. After hearing the whole sermon, I felt so strengthened because of what God spoke through him:

“Joy, I want to use your youth to prepare you for a greater calling I have for you in the future. Respect time, identify teachable moments and stay highly focused. It's only when your eyes are fixed on the greater calling I have placed upon your life, and then you will begin to spare yourself and others from unnecessary pains and failures. Take heart, my child, for you are in my safe hands.”

Thank God for believing so much in me. I believe it's time I take a stand: to fight; not to quit. God I pray that you’ll grant me the strength to stay on in my battles. Use me mightily, Lord in Your hands.
Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”
Isaiah 60:1-3 (NIV)

Dear, dear Corinthians, I can't tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn't fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren't small, but you're living them in a small way. I'm speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!
2 Corinthians 6:11-13 (MSG)

“I Will Step Out!"

by Monday, June 11, 2012

If not you, then who? If not now, then when? - Hillel

In the past, I came to a conclusion that I was actually afraid of being placed into a new environment and having to attempt doing things I had never done before. I remembered having thoughts of not wanting to go to class whenever the semester changes because it meant that the class would re-shuffle, and it meant having to meet new faces. When I am called try something new, or do something out of the ordinary things I will do, I would not dare to try out as I didn’t know what to expect.

Isn’t that sometimes how we react to God also? When he commissions us to do something, we can come up with 1000 excuses. I remembered giving God a whole load of excuses over the times when He asks me to do things, but He will always say something that I will never be able to rebut back:

1) Excuse: “But I don’t have enough time. I got other things at hand.”
“If you will spend 5 minutes procrastinating or slacking away, why not spend 5 minutes doing what I have called you to do?”
Matthew 6:33 - I may need to finish playing my game, but when I realise the more important task I should be doing first, time won’t be an issue to me anymore.
- Time is not an issue; your commitment is the issue. Make yourself available! - 

2) Excuse: “But I am shy / But I have stage fright.”
“If you will spend 5 minutes analyzing and listing down your weaknesses, why not spend 5 minutes praying, resting and relying on My grace?”
2 Corinthians 12:9, Philippians 4:13 – I may regard myself as weak and powerless. I may not be able to do things with my own strength. But when I realise God’s strength and grace is more than sufficient for me, my weaknesses are no more excuses.
- Never let weaknesses crumple your Call, for grace got your back! -
3) Excuse: “But I am only a kid.” (Confession: Used to be the most favourite excuse I will use to tell God…)
“If you will spend 5 minutes telling Me all the disadvantages you have being a kid, why not spend 5 minutes digging into the Word and changing your perspective, that I can use you no matter how young you are?”
2 Corinthians 6:11-13, 1 Timothy 4:12 – I may see myself as small. I may just be a kid. But when I realise God desires to work in me and through me, age doesn’t matter anymore.
- Age is not an issue; your level of openness to God is the issue! –
4) Excuse: “But I don’t know what to expect.” (My most recent excuse which required God to correct me)
“If you will spend 5 minutes listing down all the possibilities of the worst case scenarios you may expect, then begin doubting and worrying about what will happen, why not spend 5 minutes just resting in this promise that ‘your future’s in My hands’?”
Jeremiah 29:11, Psalm 31:3-5 – I may not what to expect. The future may be unknown to me. But when I realise who holds my future, I will stop desiring to know what to expect.
- Don’t fear not knowing what the future holds; Rest in the strong arms who’s got your future in His hands. –
5) Excuse: “But I have failed in the past.”
“If you will spend 5 minutes counting the times you failed, why not spend 5 minutes just shifting your focus back onto Me?”
2 Corinthians 5:17, Colossians 2:15 – I may have failed in the past. But when I realise Jesus has cleansed me of my past, and He could even triumph over death, what excuse I got now not to try again?
- Your past failures don’t define you. When your heart is set upon Jesus and you start to take steps of faith, watch what God will do! –

God spoke this into my heart, “If you can come up with tons of excuses, why not come up with tons of reasons why you should not answer the Call. What you have to fear? Aren’t I with you?”

God is looking for people that will stop giving excuses when He calls them. God is looking for open vessels that will say, “No excuses for me; I will choose to step out in faith.” God is searching for people that are willing to step out of their comfort zones and tell Him, “Here I am Lord. Use me and have your way in me.” When He calls you, will you be the one choosing to boldly say, “I will step out”? Or will you be the one who tries to boost your creativity juices to let God change His mind and choose someone else?

C’mon who is with me to stop giving excuses and tell God that “I will step out!”?

A relationship with Jesus will always lead to an “I can” on the inside of you.
- Pastor Sergio De La Mora, adapted from the book 'The Heart Revolution'
“No one shall be able to overthrow the works that I have commissioned you to do. My child, do not fear! Stand bold and be strong! Stop counting the cost; start running for the cause!” 
 - But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God." (Acts 5:39 NIV)

Lord I Can't, But You Can

by Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
James 1:2-4 (NIV)

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (NIV)

These 2 verses have been speaking deep into my heart these few days, strengthening me in the midst of the trial. Currently I’m facing this particular nerve-wrecking / energy-sucking trial and I felt that this trial was going nowhere because I wasn’t really depending on God but on my own strength. Thank God He shifted my perspective and kept me running again.

God spoke to me through these 2 verses, “Joy, in every battle you face, the victory has been won. It’s only a matter of time that you will see it, but through the process of waiting and walking out from this trial, you’ll see the devil launching attacks to bring your faith down. He’ll make you think that you’re fighting a losing battle. But behold! The battle has been won!”

Previously, I wasn’t facing this trial with much joy as I thought that it was an energy-sucking trial. I thought I have become skinnier in the midst of this trial (Ok just kidding haha…). But now I know that I should be rejoicing because God is building my character. I should be persevering on because I know this is a test of faith. I don’t really ask the question that some people may ask, “Why God allows suffering?” but I know that because “God believes in me, hence the trial.” Perseverance, hope and joy were the keys to stay on and not give up my trial.

This is the reason why sometimes I ask God, “God why are You so crazy to believe in me?” I failed in the midst of the trial. I did not do things that were pleasing to Him. Knowing that God believes in me, and there were leaders behind my back that have been supporting me, I feel I have let them down. What more, in the first place, I didn’t even believe in myself, that I could pull through this trial. But He always picks me up and says, “Regain your strength mighty warrior! You can do far better than this. Don’t be afraid of failing, for you may fail a thousand times, but My mercy remains. You’re never handling this trial alone. Rest in My joy – for the joy of the Lord will be your strength (Nehemiah 8:10). Stop focusing on what is temporary, but on what is eternal – the victory that has been won!”

Also, God reminded me that He wants to build up my character through this trial:
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.
Romans 5:3-5 (NLT)

“The deeper the roots, the higher the plant can grow. Deep roots take time to be grown into the soil. Similarly, I will plant deep roots in you– roots that will enable you to have that capacity to carry what I want you to grow and release. Right now, you should be able to notice that there are some elements that is not edifying towards the growth of this deep character, and I am going to remove these impurities away. Endure, my child, for your character is going to be refined and matured. I’ll bring you through the refiner’s fire and make you pure so that you can advance in the greater calling I have destined you for. Trust and rest in who I am, for I love you and I am faithful.

3 nuggets for takeaway:
1) Look towards Jesus! – Let the joy of the Lord be your strength
2) Look to what God is looking at! – The victory that has been won
3) Persevere and never give up! – Let God refine and build your character

Special thanks also for the people that have been keeping me in prayer: Jesus (my best intercessor), church leaders and friends. Thanks for never losing hope in me and for all of your constant encouragements. Thank You God for not looking and counting the times I’ve failed, but at that one time where I’ll walk out conquerors from that trial. Lord, I cannot, but You can, so I'm resting and trusting in You alone. Let not my will, but Yours be done...
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