Growing Together

I’m so blessed to be a part of other people’s lives by seeing them grow in their walk with God. As we say we are Christian, we must then believe that we are also commanded to make disciples just like what Jesus did with the chosen twelve. And to be a disciple and to make disciple is a privilege in our Christian walk. It must not be a burden for us but a joy as we experience God’s transforming power in our lives.

And being part of a discipleship group is never boring. It’s a great time of knowing the Lord deeper, knowing one another deeper, encouraging and praying for each other. It’s a venue where you can be yourself without fear of being judged. You get to travel together, do fun things together. And the other best part – there is always food! Haha!

I’m glad to be a part of a discipleship group. If you are not part of any, I hope you would start stepping out of your comfort zone and start reaching out. As our senior pastor said, (reason for not joining a discipleship group) if you think you don’t need help, then, be the one to give help. And I totally agree! Today, someone might need your encouragement, your blessing, your prayer. Don’t miss out on such a privilege!

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Throwing Off What Hinders (Giving Up TV)

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I am currently doing a year-long fast on TV series and movies.

It took a long time for me to acknowledge that I’m addicted. I need to take back control.

I actually do not watch TV at all. But sometimes, if I find a series that I really like, I get hooked. I would watch a whole season in one seating. I would do this until I finish all other seasons. After finishing the series, I would return to my normal life. Be responsible again, be faithful in my quiet time, and be a “good Christian.” Some time would pass before another good series will come out so I did not think much of it early on.

Eventually, God showed me the cycle. I identified that at the beginning of every period of discouragement or time of coldness towards God was a movie marathon. Watching TV series was Satan’s “beachhead” in my life. On one hand I thank God that it was something “small” like entertainment, yet this seemingly subtle form kept me from calling it sin.

“Whatever weakens your reason, impairs the tenderness of your conscience, obscures your sense of God, takes off your relish for spiritual things, whatever increases the authority of the body over the mind, that thing is sin to you, however innocent it may seem in itself.” (Susanna Wesley)

I knew it was harming my relationship with the Lord. That was clear enough. I also felt that God wanted me to give it up. But I could not imagine doing that. I felt that it was too extreme. To do so is to stop being a normal person. Maybe I did not want to seem “too radical.”

Maybe I just need to limit my media exposure, I thought. So I limit myself to 1 movie per week. It worked for a while. However, as I have discovered, it is not a good idea to expose a recovering addict to the things they’re addicted to. I had the right intention, but my partial obedience did not help me.

God used a recent event to tell me loud and clear that if I do not shape up, I risk missing out on His plans for me. My “God’s best”- the life God wants for each of His children. When I finally surrendered my “favorite sin,” I felt His presence more, heard His voice clearer. I had not realized that I had been grieving the Holy Spirit that whole time.

Today is the 20th day since I made my commitment. It already feels like it’s the best decision I have made. Haha! It does not even feel like I gave up anything. I have become more productive and I perform better at work. I have time to help my cousin with his school work. Most of all, I know I am at the triangle of God’s blessing. I know I am obeying Him.

Come to think of it, TV shows, movies (& other forms of entertainment) are made to distract. And they are a welcome distraction from the stress of work or the boredom of life.

However, if I know my purpose, if I’m in a crucial mission (for which I’ll be greatly rewarded), and if I know Him who asked me to do it, DO I REALLY WANT TO BE DISTRACTED?

 

“No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.” -2 Timothy 2:4

Thanks Ann San Pedro for sharing this story. A struggle that most of us are also going through. Such an encouragement!

I got everything I need, I don’t need God…

As I ride the sky train or walk in the mall, I see a lot of lost souls.  And it really breaks my heart.

I keep asking God, “How can I tell them about Jesus?”

In this era of materialism, most of us define a life of meaning and success based on what we have – wealth, career, fame.  And if someone has all of those, then really, why would that person need God?  If everything is going very well, then, what is God for?

It’s a point missed. BIG time.

If God allowed me to be born in this lifetime to survive, be successful and accomplished, do whatever I want, but then die eventually , if death will just make everything in vain, then what is really the point of living?

We missed the point. Truth is, until we truly know who God is and His great plan for all of us, we will realize that our life here on earth is not just about living a “good” life. No matter how great our life here is, if our mindset is only focused on what is temporary, we will never realize how much we truly need God in our life.

Nothing wrong with having a prosperous life. But everything becomes meaningless when we only live for this life time. It’s like watching a movie that has no ending. All you can say is, “That’s it?”

I don’t want to live that kind of life. I want to be excited for the life after this lifetime. I want to look forward to that “eternal life” that God said in the Bible. Jesus said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, He gave His Only Son, that whoever believes in His Son will not perish but will have eternal life.”

Life becomes purposeful when you accept the truth that this is not just it. There’s more. And we can only experience that through the Lord Jesus Christ, God’s Only Son.

If you haven’t experienced God in your life, I pray that you will be able to open your heart to Him. I pray that you will not miss out what lies ahead. I pray that you will live an abundant life in the presence of God.

If you want to know more about God, let me know and I would love to talk about it with you.

God bless!

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Food for the Body & Soul

 

Since I resigned from work, I had more time preparing meals especially breakfast!

One breakfast, I cooked for me and my roomie some buttered carrots, omelette and our favorite chorizo made in Cebu. It’s just nice to have normal meals on weekdays.

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I craved also for some sweets this week that I bought donuts and a box of chocolate-filled pretzel sticks.

I realized how dependent we are with food that sometimes we feel like we are about to die if we can’t eat a proper meal on time.

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I’m glad that Jesus taught us about prayer and fasting. Not just that it reminds me that I don’t live by bread alone, but it’s an amazing journey with the Lord as He enables me to just be dependent and focused on Him alone. It is a time of prayer and studying of the Bible instead of eating meals. It could be a one meal fast or three meals fast and it could be three days or a week. Aside from meals, there’s also a fast from the things that usually take away our time for God like watching television and/or the internet (Facebook, etc.)

If you haven’t tried prayer and fasting, I really recommend you give it a try.  You will experience God much deeper.