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#RelationshipGoals

2016 has just started and people have set things that they want to achieve before the year ends in a form of faith-goals, new years’s resolutions, 10-things-to-do or whatever you call it. Pictures and videos with a hashtag “#RelationshipGoals” have also become famous like couples travelling to different places, siblings coming up with a trending video, or a group of friends all wearing a Nike Airmax while riding a hoverboard with hashtag #SquadGoals.
Just like any other relationship, do we also have #RelationshipGoals when it comes to our relationship with God?
David’s goal for his relationship with God was written in 
Psalm 27:4 One thing have I asked of the Lord,
    that will I seek after:

that I may dwell in the house of the Lord

    all the days of my life,

to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord

    and to inquire[c] in his temple.

Paul expressed it in Philippians 3:7-11 7 But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in[a] Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.
How about you? Have you set goals for you to grow in your relationship with God? As for God, we know that while we were yet sinners Christ has already been pursuing us and has already proven his love for us through his death on the cross. God has done his part and He is with us. The question is, “Are we doing our part every single day to grow in our relationship with God”?
Here are some of the practical and simple things I’m doing to achieve my #RelationshipGoals as far as my relationship with God is concerned.

1. Bible-Reading

You don’t need to read 10 chapters a day. The goal is to know God and hear Him speak. As we often hear, “Transformation not Information”. You are not preparing to join a Bible Quiz, you’re just trying to get to know a person you want to grow your relationship with. As you grow in knowing Christ, ovedience and transformation will come as a result.

This year, I’ve decided to read 1 chapter of Proverbs a day and 1 Chapter of the New Testament everyday except Mondays and Fridays because I plan to read other books as I feel led and have an extended Bible-Reading time during those days.

 

Bible Reading Calendar for January

 
I’m also using this paperback, New Testament, English Standard Version so I can highlight and write revelations as I study the Word.

  
2. Prayer

I’ve heard of teachings before that I need to pray atleast an hour a day and wake up as early as 4:30 AM so I can have enough time because I also have to go to work. I tried many times and guess what? I failed many times. If you are starting in your walk with God, you need to form a habit by starting to pray for 5 minutes every single day then challenge yourself to extend to 10, 20 or 30 minutes.

Every morning, I come to God by praying in the Spirit and start by thanking Him for who He is, my relationship with Him and the great things that he’s done and ask him to bless me, give me wisdom, favor, protection and guidance from the Holy Spirit. Also, I’ve set prayer focus for each day, Monday for my pesonal prayers, Tuesday for Church and so on.

Mondays and Fridays are also set for an extended time of prayer so I can take more time to listen to him.

3. Quiet Time

Quiet time is not my Bible reading and prayer time although I start by doing those. Quiet time is taking time to be quiet and allo God to speak. If you are a student or working, let’s be honest, you can’t have a quiet time every single day. Again, I’ve set Mondays and Fridays for extended Bible reading, prayer time and quiet time or taking time to let God speak to me.

Hope these things can help you achieve your #RelationshipGoals.

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Posted by on January 5, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

ON FIFTY SHADES OF GREY: To My Fellow Christians

Much has been said about the movie and people have different opinions about it. People, Christian or Non-Christian are on both sides of the argument. I maybe late, but I felt the need to give my piece not to everyone but to my fellow Christians.

To my brothers and sisters in Christ, to everyone who call themselves followers of Jesus, fellow disciples and Bible-believing citizens:

I am writing this as a brother who cares and is concerned about you, your relationship with God and the great calling God has for you. I’m doing this as a Christian who wants to speak, in this case, write the truth in love. Second, as a youth pastor who believes so much on young people. I believe that God has a great plan for them, they will be the future leaders and the values being formed in their young minds will become the values of society five years from now.

First, if we can have time to read the book and spend more than an hour to watch the movie, is it safe to assume that we also have time to read the Bible? I do read books. I love reading books and I spend money to buy books. Sometimes, I get to spend more money in buying books than in buying clothes. I advocate reading books. But as Christians, I think there is a problem if we can spend a great deal of time reading fictional books and other books and yet we find it hard to pick up our Bible and read it. And if you don’t have a Bible yet, I think it’s a great idea if you save the money you’re going to spend to watch the movie and buy a Bible. I know I don’t have the right to tell you where to spend your money but Jesus has. Jesus is your Lord isn’t it?

If we let books influence us, isn’t it that we are to let the Bible influence us first and let it become a strainer of other opinions and philosophies? If Jesus is Lord, the Bible should be the final authority in our lives.

Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…”

We are to feed ourselves with God’s word. Jesus himself said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4)

Let us be like Job who said, “I have not departed from the commandment of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my portion of food.” (Job 23:12)

Let us also consider what the psalmist said. “With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! I have stored up your word in my heart,that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:10-11)

Second, as I have said, I love reading books. I also watch movies. I may not be an artist but I know how to appreciate art. I am not advocating, “don’t-watch-movies-because-it’s-sinful” or “don’t-read-fictional-books-because-those-are-demonic”. I’m not also saying that just because you’ve watched the movie, you are insane and you might imitate those acts. I’ve watched movies on terrorism, murder, robbery or even rape but those movies would show that those acts are not okay and they are being countered as portrayed in those movies. But 50 Shades of Grey is different. I haven’t watched the movie nor read the book but thanks to Wikipedia and IMDB. The movie and the book portrayed that sexual immorality, pre-marital sex and a sex practice called BDSM (bondage, domination, sadism and masochism) are okay. I would never see a movie that portrays women as slaves and degrades their value as an entertainment. As Christians, we are supposed to be grieved. You don’t want that to happen to you and you don’t want that to happen to your sister and your loved ones. Do you? Watching the movie is like saying, “That’s okay.” You might also want to read this from Jarrid Wilson.

Third, it was rated R-18 by the MTRCB. This means that if you are aged 18 and below, you can’t watch it in the movie house and you are not supposed to watch it in DVD or downloaded copies. To the older people, younger people look up to us and they are being influenced by us. Let us set an example. To the parents, what if your children would want to watch it and you prohibit them to do so and they would answer you back with a question, “You’ve watched it. Why can’t I?” What will you say? Think about it! And consider what my friend Perci said, “Try putting a story on Pornography and its already like 50 Shades…” and read this blog.

Lastly, yes you don’t become evil or sinful by merely watching the movie or reading the book. I agree with you! Because the truth is, you are already evil before even watching or reading it. You are evil. I am evil. We are all sinful and impure apart from Jesus Christ. I didn’t become righteous by not watching or reading the book the same way as you did not become evil by reading it.

The Bible says that, “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.” (Psalm 51:5) We are sinful at birth. We are corrupted down to our roots and it’s only through Jesus Christ and His finished work that we have been made pure and righteous when we repent of our sins and believe the Gospel.

And now as Christians, followers of Jesus Christ, disciples, Bible-believing citizens who are not of this world, have been made righteous by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we are no longer slaves of sin but slaves of righteousness. We are called to live pure and holy lives! This is our calling. This is who we are.

Let us then consider these:

But among you there must not be even a hintof sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. (Ephesians 5:3) You might also want to read this blog from TGC.

Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. (1 Timothy 5:1-2)

As a result, they do not live the rest of their earthly lives for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry. They are surprised that you do not join them in their reckless, wild living, and they heap abuse on you. (1 Peter 4:2-4)

Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)

For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God; and that in this matter no one should wrong or take advantage of a brother or sister.[b] The Lord will punish all those who commit such sins, as we told you and warned you before. For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 4:2-8)

Your fellow Christian,

JMN

 
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Posted by on February 18, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Learning From Elijah: Just Trust the Extraordinary God

James 5:17-18

Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.

There’s nothing extraordinary with Elijah. He was just an ordinary human being just like us. But what made his prayer so powerful? It is because of his great confidence on our EXTRAODINARY GOD. He trusted our all powerful God.

In 1 Kings 17:1 Elijah said, “As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.” Wow! What a faith?! He was so confident that God will hear him that he said, “it will not rain unless I say so”. He knows that when he calls on to God, God will answer him. Again in 1 Kings 18, because of his great faith, he even challenged the Baal prophets saying, “…call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the LORD. The god who answers by fire-he is God”. He knew then that God will hear him.

Again, there’s nothing extraordinary with Elijah except that he had great faith in our Extraordinary God. The God that Elijah worshipped and served is the same God that we worship and serve today. He is unchanging. His faithfulness to His promises remains and His power wasn’t lessened through the years. He is the same yesterday, and today and forever.

Believe that He will fulfill every promise that you received from Him. Continue to believe because he is faithful and is able. Be confident that He will perform miracles on your behalf as you call on Him.

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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INTRUSION: In the Furnace

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Love Different: Should We follow our heart?

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Original Design

We just started our BLUEPRINT SERIES in our Sunday Worship Experiences. For three weeks starting this Sunday, we will be talking about biblical manhood, God’s original design for man. Here are some of my random thoughts about the original design of man and woman from the Bible:

26Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” 27So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:26-27

27So God created mankind in his own image…

  • We are created in the image of God. We carry the image of God in us that’s why satan hates you. satan wants to destroy you because you have the image of God. When satan looks at you and sees the image of God in you, he’s reminded that he’s defeated and he’s nothing compared toy you and our God. If you are a gay, lesbian, homosexual, transgender, or whatever distorted image you have, all your reason why you ended up like that including your family background, past experiences and lies are from the enemy. It’s about time to restore your original design. God is the only one who can do that because created in His image.
  • We are created in the image of God. Jesus is the perfect gentleman. Even if it’s not natural to you, do your best to be a gentleman. When you enter a room, be the one to open the door, don’t wait for the women to do it. When walking in the road, stay on the danger side. When in danger, don’t run ahead leaving the women instead protect them.
  • Jesus pursued us. MEN are to pursue. WOMEN are to be pursued. Not the other way around.
  • Our design was written in the Bible. MEN read your Bible as well as the women. TO THE WOMEN: Don’t fall to a man who can drink cans of beer, play DoTA or lift weights but can’t read his Bible.

“…in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

  • MALE & FEMALE. If you have a male sex organ, you are a male. If you have a female sex organ, you are a female. Nothing in between! MEN and women as well, you always know that whenever you go to the CR and pee.
  • The world defined manhood in ways that are distorted.

“Drink this beer and you become a man”

“Smoke this cigar and you become a man.”

“Have sex with the girls and you become a man.”

  • “Being a male is a matter of birth but being a man is matter of choice.”- Ed Cole

In a way, because of sin, we all have a distorted image. The only way is to go back to the One who designed and created us. God is so much willing to fix those distortions because He wants the best for us!

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

 
 
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