Thursday, August 15, 2013

Servanthood

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This post is from my first (serious) spiritual leader, Theo Villa. The teaching seems to be very timely as we are building a lifegroup (and hopefully church soon) here in Dubai and serving God in this location is a big challenge but a great opportunity.

Servanthood (John 2:1-12)

Serving God is an invitation to all [ver 1-2]
Matthew 9:37-38 (TNIV) - (Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.")
  • Everyone of us is called to serve God. His invitation goes out to everyone regardless of age, sex, education background, family background or profession. 
  • Everyone has a role to play in his kingdom
Serving God requires  willingness to serve [ver 4]
God has given us gifts... gift of leadership, gift of music, administration... and so on... but these are nothing if we are not willing to use it for the glory of God.  Further more, God does not look at what we do best, but God looks at the willingness of our heart to do His will.  

1 Samuel 16:7 (TNIV) - (But the Lord said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things human beings look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.")

God knows what's on our heart... He knows your motives, he knows if you are scared, He knows if you are willing to be used by Him. Serve God because you are willing not because you are able to do things... 

Serving God Requires Obedience ver [5-7]
  • Obedience is a state of heart.  You can obey your leaders but deep inside you grumble... You can obey some yet your mind would say... "My idea is better than yours" 
  • Obedience is humility... accepting others and respecting others. 
  • You obey your leaders because they are God's appointed Shepherds, leaders, & mentors... you obey them because you honor & respect them. 
Serving God requires you to serve God First and then others.
  • Your Master is Jesus... 
  • You serve Jesus when you serve others.
  • You serve Jesus if you serve together with your leaders.
  • You serve Jesus if you offer your talents & skills for His glory.
Serving God means Jesus first, serving others & lastly yourself. Serving God means to focus on God Himself.

Hebrews 12:1-2 (TNIV) - (Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, [2] fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.)

Serving God brings out the best in you [ver 9-10]
Serving God means:
  • allow Him to use you 
  • allow Him to discipline you 
  • allow Him to transform you thru His Love
  • allow Him to develop your character
  • allow Him to discover your gifting
God reveals His goodness through your serving [ver 11-12]
Many people will be blessed because you have serve God... 

God will bless you and through you many people will be blessed... you will be a channel of blessing, an encourager, through you healing will come, through you many people will come to know Jesus.

Image taken from http://hudumacrc.org

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

One More Chance

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Nope, this isn't about that famous movie about Popoy & Basha. This is about ourselves and the people around us. Everytime we meet new friends I am very sure that there will always be an inclusion about the past, yesterday or last month or last year. Behind those closed doors were absolutely some mistakes and misfortunes, no exceptions. Each one of us has that past sins and adversities that somehow taught us in order to live a better life.

Given that fact, we can still encounter some people who choose to isolate theirselves and feel so sorry about those things they did "once upon a time". Also in our end, we sometimes feel ashamed of the wrong actions that we did long time ago and we are letting this dark shadow to haunt us. This kind of emotion can be a result of how are we looking into past and focus on those mistakes that will lead us to fear about judgment and the feeling of guilt.

But the best question is how our Father sees us? This my friend I can tell you that his lenses are always clean, no spots. He always sees us in the image of crystal clear water, no dirt and no bacteria. All of the past mistakes have been vanished upon seeking forgiveness and that should make us guilt free on how we look inside into our hearts. A better way to understand the deeper meaning of forgiveness is can be seen in John 8:1-11. It is about a woman who was caught committing adultery but Jesus did not judge her, instead total forgiveness and new chance was given.

Aside from that, there is grace that is always available and "free" for everybody. We know that if we commit mistakes, we hurt Him but since He has this unending love for us then we can be assured that there is no condemnation. Once we accept that forgiveness that He offers then we are certain that new chance and new beginning is in the making. Second chances are always best as we have the tendency to be better and these chances help us to strengthen our faith and cultivate a deeper relationship with Him. Everybody deserves a second chance.

Image taken from 1loveforchrist.com