Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Do not worry about...

Victory Christian Fellowship preaches the same thing, for this year-opening season. So you could understand that this is God's global call to believers and anyone human, right?

Discerning the Times, Part 13

As we are told in Hebrews 12 and other verses, everything that can be shaken will be shaken. However, we have been given a kingdom that cannot be shaken. A primary way that we build our lives on the kingdom that cannot be shaken is to use the key of the kingdom for every major decision in our lives. The key of the kingdom is described in Matthew 6:31-33:

“Do not be anxious then, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘With what shall we clothe ourselves?’
“For all these things the Gentiles eagerly seek; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.”

The first thing the Lord tells us to do is to refuse anxiety. Anxiety is a lack of faith in God. This is an especial affront to God because when we are anxious, we are implying that the problems are bigger than God. Whenever we begin to feel anxious, we must learn to look at God and resolve that we are going to use our trials to increase our faith in Him. He is much bigger than all of the world’s problems combined.

God is the ultimate answer to every human problem, and He wants to demonstrate this, starting with ours. We must trust Him, and anxiety is evidence that we do not trust Him. Reject anxiety. It is the sin of unbelief. We repent of sin by confessing it and then turning away from it. Determine that your response to a problem will not be to feel anxious, but to see it as a wonderful opportunity to grow in our faith in Him. We read in I Peter 1:6-9:

In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,
that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.

To be tempted is not sin. We can all be tempted to doubt and to be anxious, but the quicker we recognize it and turn away from it, turning our attention instead to God, the more we will learn to walk in the peace of God. Walking in the peace of God is basic to a victorious life, as we are told in Romans 16:20: “And the God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” Notice that he did not say that the “Lord of hosts,” which means the “Lord of armies” would crush Satan, but the God of peace would. It is the peace of God that is an impregnable fortress. The peace of God is the linchpin fruit of the Spirit, which if we lose it, all of the other fruits of the Spirit will also be lost. Think about it: If you lose your peace, you will quickly lose your patience and faith—then it is hard to love…. We must guard our peace.

We can count on this being tested this year by many events in the world. Let us resolve now that instead of worrying about the things happening in the world, that we are going to grow in our trust in the Lord because He has already overcome the world. He is bigger than the world.

The best way to put our trust in the Lord is the next thing the Lord said to do after telling us not to be anxious—seek first His kingdom in everything we do. If we are anxious, it can be a sign that we have not been building our lives on the kingdom God, but rather the things of this world. Regardless of how far off the path we have gone, we can get back on the path by determining now to seek first the kingdom in everything we do, making it the most basic issue in every major decision that we make. When we know we are seeking the Lord first and His kingdom, the peace of God will come upon us. Having the peace of God rule in our lives will be critical in the times to come.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Freedom from Distractions - Lessons Learned in an MRT Station

In a person's life, one of the biggest dilemmas is how to keep focused in a world filled with distractions. I learned something as I pushed past the people in MRT - Ayala Station:

I got to the area where I needed to go by keeping my eyes focused on the area where I wanted to land in, and not mind the people blocking my way.

So my lesson learned was, to get to where I need to go, I need to keep my eyes focused on God, and on the Vision He has for me; with that, I won't even know it, but I've gotten to where I needed to go, and I won't even feel the things that are distracting me.

Things that derail people include navel-gazing and nitpicking. I need to stop looking "deep into myself," and finding fault with myself, and then picking at the things that shouldn't concern me, and instead, focus on the things that matter: God and His plan for me.

This doesn't mean that I won't deal with the issues that I still have. On the contrary, I need to just surrender them to the Lord...

One thing that I learned one time was, I realized that I finally got the hang of controlling my brain: things are a lot quieter up there now; also, friends and meh have noticed, and are telling me, that I'm a lot less angry and reactive lately...

And you know what hit me?

I never really agonized to get from Point A to Point B. I never lifted a finger to get rid of my anger issues. I never lifted a finger to learn to be more faithful; All I ever did..................

Was say a prayer.

It's truly God's grace that I ever moved a single step from Point A at all. And how I got to Point B... Is nothing but a miracle.

I'm excited to move to Point C. :D

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Monday, December 1, 2008

Slow Me Down: Seriously Sabbath Sunday

Today, I had been filled with sermons telling me to REST. The entire November was filled with such toil and trouble that I was actually already wondering if I was a member of the cast of Macbeth or something.. "Double double, toil and trouble..."

I decided not to go to church and just have my own service in my room, again. No use wasting energy getting on a jeepney and seeing energy-drainin' scenarios and energy-drainin' pplz. Heheh.

Uncannily enough, I chose Pastor Joey Bonifacio's "Curse of Restlessness" for my "Sunday Sermon." The title was just intriguing, and I just thought it would be a fun thing to listen to for my "Seriously Sabbath Sunday."

And you know what it was all about? Entering God's REST.

There is a reason why God had created us on the Sixth day, and Adam woke up to fellowship with Him on the 7th day. Pastor Joey said that this is because God did not want us to see Him working. God's priority is that we be able to walk with Him and enjoy His presence, as well as His creation with Him.

From that sermon, I realized that the constant running around and the mentality of "Busybusybusybusybusy," is not a blessing; rather it is a curse: the same curse that God had put on Cain when he committed the first murder: Restlessness.

After this sermon, I had decided to also listen to renowned prophet, pastor, teacher and writer Rick Joyner's "Entering God's Rest." Same thing. We need to rest. Same thing: God did not create TOIL. In fact, it is a curse. But God DID create LABOR, and LABOR is supposed to be enjoyable. Work is supposed to be enjoyable and holy.

After I listened to those sermons, I went, "WHOA!"

So for all those 8 weeks of grueling torture under toil, where I was actually being an idiot, running around like Alice in Wonderland's White Rabbit, I was, in reality, under a "Curse of Restlessness."

Most people would deem me crazy/idiotic/stupid for letting go of a client that had allowed me to neutralize a big chunk off my current debt. You know what, the day after I let go, and I decided to fully rest, and the depression dissipated, I FELT SO MUCH BETTER.

I let go of that client because things were already emotionally maddening. There was deception and power-playing involved, manipulation, so much strife, and it was no longer a healthy situation. My emotional makeup was absolutely shot: I hated them, I hated all work, even for the clients I've been with for a while, and even those that I had struck a great rapport with.

I had never made a better decision in my life.

After listening to this sermon, and searching for Jewish Superstar Emmy Rossum of Phantom of the Opera's SLOW ME DOWN, I finally got it.

After "my own service" at home, cooking lunch for meh and enjoying it with God in a lazy, quiet, Sunday, I went off to my boarding house's subdivision playground. I had always told God, whenever I passed by that playground, that I'd like to be on the swing at one point in my existence...

I got what I wanted yesterday. :)

I was swinging high up in the air and just being in general glee like a 5-year-old. I didn't realize that you could actually swing without anyone pushing you. Hey, I was experiencing powerful swings, and major gusts of swinging-induced air that allowed my hair to flap behind me! I was... In bliss. :D

I felt like God was pushing the swing for me, as I listened to rockin' Christian prophetic worship songs. If I knew what flying was like, swinging would most likely be just like flyin'!

So from this point on, I's swearin': Two days off fer meh after grueling seasons of work, and at least once a day of REEEEEST. It says in the Bible that we have SIX days to do our work. I might as well enjoy my Sunday Sabbaths. :D

And you, workaholic human, next Sunday, YOU TAKE A REST TOO!

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