Monday, January 31, 2011

Integrity

No comments :
Integrity, as defined in Wikipedia is a concept of consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expections and outcomes. In ethics, integrity is regarded as the honesty and truthfulnessof one's action. The definitions seems to be easy to understand but the question is, do we have this positive trait? Our integrity can be measured on the number of promises we have done against the quantity of which we have broken. When we have integrity, we are respected and we have self respect.

This word defines who we are, on what kind of relationship we have to others and how they look into us. This also sometimes serves as a basis and list of all our positive attitudes but it also damages our testimony if we did something that is not on that list, meaning we commited a mistake. It also determines how we react in a situation whether if it is full of pressure or in the midst of crisis. Integrity has four major roles in our life:

1. Blesses Us. In Proverbs 20:7 (The righteous man leads a blameless life; blessed are his children after Him), it describes here that if we are obedient to all His commands and teachings, an overflowing of blessings will be given to us. We should walk in faith with Him and let Him lead us to His path.

2. Judges Us. Job 31:6 - "Let God weigh me in honest scales and He will know that I am blameless". In everything we do, we are answerable to all our actions and these actions will evaluate us how we live our life and what kind of relationship we have with Him. We should always be consistent and don't fall on negativity and don't let others influence you.

3. Protects Us. Psalm 25:21 - "May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in you". Once we have integrity, we are protected as we are bound with all the positive attitudes for showing our values and honesty to everyone. As long as we are doing the right thing, we don't have to worry on what will will happen the next day as we have Him in our life.

4. Guides Us. Proverbs 11:3 - "The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity." By doing only right things all the time will provide us a guide in every situation. Since the experience of being with Him and living in a rightful way, our decision making becomes matured, more passionate in doing good things and that we have these guidelines on every action we take.

In this fast pacing world right now, we might encounter several situations where choices can be made on how to react on it. With our conversation to others and all the words we are using, are we honest enough? Integrity is a simple word with variety of explanations and definitions but I think the simple way to have it is to do the right things all the time. I admit that I am still a work in progress and it's not easy but we have options and we have God who is always watching us.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Ultimate Command

No comments :
We have the 10 commandments but I still consider loving God is the ultimate. Isn't it nice when you wake up in the morning knowing that He watched you your entire sleep? Isn't it a great feeling that wherever you and whatever you do, there is someone who loves you? And the best way to bring it all back to Him is also to LOVE him. We had a devotion discussion last Thursday and I don't know where this "ultimate command" words came from when I was asked about the below verse:

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 - 4) Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5) Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6) These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7) Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8) Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9) Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.


I said it as ultimate command as I feel that when you love God, everything that you see is beautiful, there is no pain and your life will be filled with great happiness. We are assured and secured with Him, ready to embrace us for any failures and victory, ready to listen to us when we want to talk or even when we are crying. He loves us so much that we should also love Him above all by following his orders, avoid making sins, letting Him to lead us going to His path and listen to Him when He speaks to our heart. I am blessed that I have a mother who is very close to Him that she literally displayed God related items in our entire house and yes even in the gate. Since our childhood, we knew His existence and we always acknowledge His presence in our lives.

Matthew 22:37-38 - 37) Jesus replied: "Love the Lord God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38) This is the first and greatest commandment.

It is very clear from the above verse that loving Him is the greatest commandment. All is possible with Him. They are saying that we are playing the game called life, I will say that love is the greatest weapon/advantage in this game. So let's use it, we can overcome any troubles when we love Him and nothing can go wrong.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Power of Prayer and Fasting

No comments :
[hiswords.carlomalbas.com] Before, I really don't understand the purpose of fasting but with the help of the Joseph unit I was able to understand it more. With the power of prayers and a bit of sacrifice, you will feel fulfilled and will be amazed on the outcome and result of such process. Most of us when we say fasting, the first thing that comes to our mind is about giving up foods. It was actually correct, the bible explains us the true meaning of fasting and it was defined in Esther 4:15-16 ( 15) Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai: 16) “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.”)


But in this modern world, I was informed that fasting may come in different form such as putting a little sacrifice or giving up non super important things for a period of time such as leisure or hobbies or anything that we can't stop doing everyday. As Christians it is not always about prayer, sometimes prayer plus fasting is good combination as it helps us to seek God's righteousness, His wisdom, His will and strength.

Psalm 35:13 - Yet when they were ill, I put on sackcloth and humbled myself with fasting, When my prayers returned to me unanswered

Last December, I fasted for a week by giving up all meat and rice and noodles. I am praying for the immediate recovery of a relative who helped us before in times of our crisis duing my childhood and school days. After a week, still the prayer was unanswered so I spoke to God and showed Him that my full trust is in Him and I believe He has a plan for everything. On the 2nd of January, I fasted again but this time, I was digitally dead for a week - no Facebook, no Twitter and no Foursquare. On my 6th day, I received a news that He was doing fine and ready to leave the hospital! I was so delighted hearing those words from my mother and I praised and thanked Him!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Holy Spirit

3 comments :
Last night after my cardio exercises, I met my UL in this coffee stall in AMK Hub. He was patiently waiting for me and was all set to discuss on what he called "a hard topic". Anyway, we started with a prayer before the formal shepherding. We started about by defining what Trinity is. It was described to me as "three in one", meaning God is believed to be made up of three personas, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit with equal level. Once you accepted one of it, you have accepted the three of them, kinda one big package.

In Ephisians 4:30 (And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption), Holy Spirit can be described as a person with feelings, the "grieve" stated above is the sadness or the feeling of being hurt everytime we sin. Holy Spirit also thinks and give us wisdom, don't you feel sometimes experience that some bright ideas just came up in the middle of nowhere? it happened to me a lot of times! Everytime my CL will send out the cg functions and I'm in charge of games, suddenly an overflowing of ideas were being presented to my mind.

Holy Spirit also speaks (Acts 13:2 - While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them"). We should always acknowledge and be aware that HS is also speaking to us in order for us to hear the voice. HS is not speaking of any stories but the voice is gentle that always remind me of who I am and what I should be, specifically to be like Jesus. We should just listen to all the lessons, realizations and the revelations, receiving HS empowers us.

UL also discussed to me the gifts of the Holy Spirit which comprises nine gifts. No one will have all nine gifts in one person as we should need each other and everyone has the job to fulfill in sharing His greatness. Once our leader give us a gift, we must accept and practice it. These gifts are directly discussed in the following verses:
1 Corinthians 12:7-11 - 7) Now to each one of the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8) To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9) to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10) to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11) All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines.

To summarize, the nine gifts are:
1.The Word of Knowledge
2.The Word of Wisdom
3.The Gift of Prophecy
4.The Gift of Faith
5.The Gifts of Healings
6.The Working of Miracles
7.The Discerning of Spirits
8.Different Kinds of Tongues
9.The Interpretation of Tongues

To fully receive and have these gifts, they are being supported by the nine fruit of Holy Spirit (UL used the word fruit to signify that it should be one and also a big package). This fruit were directly discussed in Galatians 5:22.
The fruit consists:
1.Love
2.Joy
3.Peace
4.Longsuffering
5.Kindness
6.Goodness
7.Faithfulness
8.Gentleness
9.Self-control

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Year of God's Supernatural Increase

No comments :
Yesterday was such a fulfilling Sunday service with Pastor Christie. It was her first preach for the year after her interesting and enjoyable vacation in Bhutan. The main verse of the sermon was:

2 Corinthians 9:10 - Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.

She claimed and we all claimed that this year will be the year of supernatural increase and the one behind it is non other than Him. On the above verse, seed may pertains to job, knowledge, etc. They will be increased not just in the quantity manner but also increase in annointing, increase on the power or anything that you and that our finance will be increasingly getting healthier... wow and Amen! It was also emphasized that God is the one who supplies, increases, multiplies and enlarges all that we have.

On the last quarter of 2010, after I received several amounts of money from my previous company, I divided it to my savings, property and other expenses. I wasn't able to budget about my house shifting, it really got out of my mind. I was really hesitant to use my savings and my budget is enough for that month (yeah, I do monthly budgetting via Excel). So I asked God for assistance and signs if I should use the savings and deduct some amount. Surprisingly, my previous company contacted and informed me that I have a cheque waiting for me and inquired for my bank account. It was the pending amount returnable of my contributions to our internal provident fund. I was delighted that time and praised and thanked Him for that unexpected blessing!

1 Corinthians 3:7 - So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.

On the above verse, it is cyrstal clear that God is the one behind the increase whether if it they are victories, promotion, financial aspects or even lovelife. In everything that we do, we must put Jesus first and we will never get wrong. Pastor Christine also shared that story of Moses, about that 40 years of exploration going to the promise land but the people were so doubtful and have a lot of questions. The lessons I learned from the story is that never struck the rock (Jesus) but speak to Him. Speak what you believe. We are not suppose to condemn others but believe that there is always hope, forgiveness and new beginning with Jesus.

Ephisians 3:20-21 - 20) Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, 21) to Him be glory in the church and througout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.

Start the year with Jesus, there is always hope, never give up. He will give us more than we ask for, all the blessings that we have now will be increased and wil come a moment that it will come to us overflowing and immeasurably.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Fresh Start with God

3 comments :
Last night was another caregroup session for Joseph 1. Again, I have learned a lot of things from His words and truly it was really amazing and fulfilling. The topic was about on how we can restart or refresh our relationship with Him. It was a fit topic as it was the first CG of the year and we just faced 2011. The main verse of the night was:
Isaiah 43:18-19 - 18) Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19) See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

It was very clear that we should forget the past and live with the present and continue to look forward. In order to accomplish this, we have to consider these three things:
1.) Change focus - We should now create and try to accomplish something new and focus to those things who will improve us with all the aspects whether if it is personal, career and especially relationship with Him. By changing focus we can move forward.
2.) Do not allow previous failures to meddle in our life - By forgetting the past doesn't mean we really have to forget those previous moments, we just need to learn from those experiences. Live a new life and avoid redoing past mistakes.
3.) Avoid depending on past victories - Don't stop dreaming! With all the accomplishments that we had previously, it is better to add more on the list, aim higher. Don't be contented with what you have and it is not bad to look for better and more victories as long as the intention is good.

Psalm 51:10 - Create in me a pure heart, Oh God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

We shouldn't be afraid about tomorrow and we should claim that this is the year of favor and victory for us. Let's renew ourselves in all the things especially with our relationship to Him. We are blessed that we have a chance to start and have a new beginning in our every failure or every chapter of our lives. This is because He is with us always. We can always have a brand new start with God if we will obey Him, acknowledge Him and follow Him. We should keep moving and move forward in the Lord as every new step will unfold more wisdom and more holiness in our lives. Let us set goals according to the word of God and start to look ahead of things. Be excited for new things that will be revealed to us in the coming days.

Psalm 3:14 - I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

As for me, after all those trials that happened, I was able to move on and started to build a new me. During those times, I believed that it will end as every beginning has an end and in vice versa, every end has a new beginning. We always have a chance to improve and rewrite another chapter of our existence. This blog is actually a fresh start to deepen my relationship with Him and share to others how great He is!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Watcher

2 comments :
Last night, we had a devotion about the way God watches us every minute, every hour and every day. It was actually my first time to read verses from Job and I had difficulty in understanding it, honestly. After my UL and CL texted us to read the verse I immediately looked for it from the internet and whoa! Nosebleed! I can't really understand it even if I read it from context and done almost 20 times of reading it. Here are the verses:

Job 7:18-19 - 18) that you examine him every morning and test him every moment? 19) Will you never look away from me, or let me alone even for an instant?

It was a good thing that we had a discussion with the Joseph unit before the CG prep and my mind was opened to the real meaning of it. We are favored in His eyes, that He secures us and ensures that we are doing the right thing and follow his commands. Yes it is everyday and we are blessed to know and feel that He is always there to guide us and check on us every minute.

As said by Frevy, God is like a father who still loves his son despite the wrong doings and misbehavior at some instances. As mentioned by Liway, we are blessed because He loves us, there is no moment He leaves us and let us do anything that we want. He is always there to remind us reveal to us the good path towards to Him. As mentioned by She, we will only be blessed if we follow His commands. As mentioned by Clai, He is also like a chef that watching over the dishes He is cooking and never leave a single minute to ensure that the food will be served. Here is another verse about Him watching us.

Psalm 32:8 - I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.

Isn't it very comforting to know that we have a Him in our everyday life, in our every action, in every moment whether failure or victory? He is not just there to watch but also to listen and instruct us. I feel really blessed!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Just Believe

No comments :
During the lowest point of my life last year, specifically around July to September, I was at home most of the time and I used it to get closer to Him by reading the bible. On one instance, I was impatiently waiting for a good result and answer that I almost gave up but upon reading this verse, it striked me.
Mark 11:24 - Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

So I continued to pray and claimed that all my prayers will be answered in the right time and that I just need to believe and trust His plans to me. But still after that, there were still those times of doubts and questions on when is the right time? How long should I wait? Should I give up? Are these His plans, to make me suffer? Why is this happening to me? Did I do something wrong? But my trust to Him erased all those uncertainties and I just continued to pray and that time, I looked for more support on the bible as I believe all the answers to our questions can be found in that tiny book.

1 John 5:14-15 - 14) This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15) And if we know that He hears us - whatever we ask - we know that we have what we asked of Him.

Acts 16:31 - They replied, "Believe in the lord Jesus, and you will be saved - you and your household.

Matthew 7:7-8 - 7) Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8) For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to Him who knocks, the door will be opened.


We can see how great He is, He will give everything we desire, just approach Him, just ask and believe that He is always at our side, ready to listen. By believing, it feels so light to wake up every morning knowing that we are loved. Like what I posted before on my Facebook account, "Prayer is the best communication as you know you are loved by the one you are talking to". But there were some moments of questions why we are not blessed or the prayers are taking too long to be answered. The answers are still in the bible and believe me, after reading it, I understood more what my weaknesses are and what are the things I need to consider.

John 16:24 - Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive and your joy will be complete.

James 1:6 - But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

James 4:3 - 3) When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
The keywords are to ask and believe, don't be discouraged and get frustrated. As my UL discussed to me on our last shepherding, ensure that my prayers are for good intentions and that my motives are clean and will not make any harm to others. Well then, I insist, ask thru prayers, there is always a proper and correct timing to Him... just believe.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Follow God's Game Plan In Your Life

4 comments :
It's the first Sunday Service of 2011 and I decided to put an effort to setup a new blog site that will cover all His words and messages that I have learned and put a mark on my life which also serves as my inspiration and devotion.

(January 2, by Bro. Ferdie) - The sermon revolved to below passages:

Jeremiah 1:4-10
4) The word of the Lord came to me, saying 5) "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." 6) "Ah, Sovereign Lord," I said, "I do not know how to speak: I am only a child." 7) But the Lord said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a child.' You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8) Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you," declares the Lord. 9)Then the Lord reached out his hand and touched my mouth and said to me, "Now, Ihave put my words in your mouth. 10) See, today I appoint you over nations and kingdoms to uproot and tear down, to destroy and overthrow, to build and to plant."

Jeremiah 29:11

11) For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future".

Commentaries:

1. Discover and run God's plan. On Jeremiah 1:5, we can see from His words that He knows us from the very beginning and He has prepared His plans for us. He created us and that the moment we were formed inside the womb, He has all the gameplan to us. The ultimate purpose in life is to know God and enjoy God. The ultimate satisfaction in life is to discover God's plan for your life and doing it.
  • Seek and listen to God. (When you seek, you will find) - Based on James 1:5 "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to allwithout finding fault, and it will be given to him". From these words, we can tell that God is waiting for us to ask for all the things that we need, ask Him and we should be ensured that He will give it to us, seek Him and you will find the answers to all of your questions.
  • When you seek God you will know what you need to know when you need to know it.
2. Trust and obey God's plan in your life. On Jeremiah 1:6-8, it shows there that we have doubts in our abilities and that sometimes we do not trust what our capabilities are. But we should trust and obey Him as He will lead us to the correct path and all the struggles and circumstances that we are facing, just believe that God has a plan for all of this and in time you will realize how good He is and will appreciate the importance of His love. You and God are a majority, you and God are a winning team. Just trust that He is always there to help us and that he is always at our side to guide and provide us the things we need.
3. Live up to God's plan today. In Jeremiah 1:9-10, just face all the challenges and be assured that all will be will with the power of His name, just follow his path. Consistently surrendering to His leadership.