Romans 8:28 (Part 2)

Romans 8:28 (NKJV)
28 And we know that all things work together
for good to those who love God,
to those who are the called
according to His purpose.

 

Let’s get back to the rest of this wonderful promise!

for good.

Now here, most people have many misconceptions. When we think of our good, we think of our benefit, our convenience. But most of us don’t even have a slightest clue on what is good or if it will turn out to be for our good. It’s like when I buy clothing. I usually buy something because it looks nice on display and I think it would look nice on me. I put it on and test it in inside the fitting room and sees that my decision to buy it is correct. When I wear it to an event, that’s when I would unfortunately realize that it is too fitted or too big or have a too deep neckline or the straps are falling off my shoulders or even the fabric is too sheer which is a big disaster. It’s like when I buy heels that make my legs look slimmer and sexier and ended up arguing with the same heels and throwing them out because of the many many blisters it gave my feet all the time I wear them (true story btw).

The truth is we don’t know what is good for us. We are completely ignorant of what will give us the greatest benefit. We desire for a lot of things thinking they will be good for us. We think that we know better when in both sides of reality, only God does as He is omniscient. The only way we can be assured that what we choose will be for our good is only if it is in line with His will. Not something pleasing to the eyes, not something other people said is good, but because it is His will.

Then what if I mistakenly or intentionally go against His will? We, the children of God, the eternally secured in Christ. In these times when we become wayward, He, as omnipotent and sovereign as He is, is still able to change and fix things up, not His will, but all things around it, including us, so that we will realize that we are going the wrong way. He will let us undergo a very very painful learning process, which we can actually avoid, until we surrender and say “Thy will be done” because He knows it will be for our good. In time, when mature in our walk with Him, He will enable us not to live our lives according to our will but according to His.

to those who love God.

Well this promise is for everyone who loves God and entrusted their lives solely unto Him through faith in the salvation and lordship of Christ Jesus. We cannot simply say that we love God and go on with our lives.

The Bible says in Matthew 22:37-38 says, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.” Loving God demands our everything: our heart, our soul and our mind. He is to be our greatest treasure, cherished and delighted into, desired above everything else. (See the article: A Treasure Found). 

This will only be possible once we received Jesus in our lives as our Lord and Savior (here is how). The reason behind it is it is impossible to treat God as your most treasured possession as humans. Humans, because of our sins, cannot come before a Holy God. In ourselves alone, our eyes are veiled and blinded from the beauty of His grace and love in Christ Jesus. We maybe able to see and know God the Father but it will extremely difficult to obey Him and surrender unto Him if we rely only our own. We all are sinful by our innate nature, selfish and foolish beings in rebellion who think highly only of ourselves and want to take control of our own lives and would never relinquish it to anyone else.

But once we repent of our sins and receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we become born again and a new creation. We will have Christ living in us through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  Now with Jesus living in us and convicting us through the Holy Spirit, we will be able to really treasure God for who He is whom is above everything else just like Jesus did. We will desire for God and a deeper intimacy for Him. We will  be able to keep His commandments because we love Him through us abiding in Christ.

to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Lastly, we, the beloved children of God, are here on earth not just to enjoy the blessings of the abundant life He bestows upon us but we are the called according to His purpose. His purpose is not according to our terms and condition but His terms which is for us to be  transformed from glory to glory and become Christ-like. We are to be changed and conformed to the image of Christ. Why is that?

Christ as we all know is God-incarnate, the image of God. He is the greatest manifestation and revelation of God’s love for the world. As John 3:16 says: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” God willingly gave Jesus up for the undeserving world to save us from our sins because of His love. Jesus willingly died as His obedience to the Father. As a result, we who received Him will have eternal life. Jesus is the glory of the grace of God.

When we are transformed to the likeness of Christ, we will be  able to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. God’s love will have a physical vessel in this cruel world, us loving other people thorough Christ. Just as Jesus laid down His life  for us, in Christ, we are enabled to selflessly and lovingly lay down our lives for all sorts of people all over the world. We can be a poured out wine and broken bread with joy as we grasp God’s purpose for our Christ-likeness reveals His heart: His glorious outrageous love for people and the world.

 

I pray that whenever we are reminded of this marvelous promise God has for us we will really use it to convict us and direct us on the great truth it contains. May we be able to believe in our hearts that:

 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 (NKJV)

 

#GirlWithPinkBible

#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

 

Created “Perfectly” By God

A personal experience has inspired me in writing this blog. When I was in grade school, I was often bullied so I tried to fit in and be a ‘somehow’ bully-type student. This continues until secondary school, subconsciously until I reached my university days. I carried this until my first job in Philippines, I was working like I was competing for superb applause and praise from the people around me. I even came to the point where I skip lunch just to accomplish a deadline, seeking for pleasing recognition from my immediate supervisor. But when I met Jesus, He showed me that I was indeed created perfectly by God. That no one can turn me down, I am His son, I am precious, I am chosen! Daily revelations from God by meditating in His words have given me clear directions where to put my focus, energy, resources and time.

According to a study, a cold hard data shows that narcissistic disorder has been found in population with ages starting from 20, to be three times higher than those that are 65 years old and older. Narcissistic disorder is the pursuit of gratification for vanity or egotistic admiration of self-attributes. The term was derived from Greek mythology of young Narcissus who fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water.

Everyone has been very conscious with everything about themselves. From their head to toes, from the food they eat, how they look, the manner they speak, having latest gadgets, being into the latest fashion trends or hairstyles. There is nothing wrong with all of these. But unconsciously, this level of consciousness has been the result of our desire to conform with the world, to be liked, to be loved, to be accepted and to fit into the world.

“And do not be conformed to this world (any longer with its superficial values and customs), but be transformed and progressively changed (as you mature spiritually) by the renewing of your mind (focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes), so that you may prove (for yourselves) what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect (in His plan and purpose for you).

Romans 12:2 (AMP)

A personal experience has inspired me in writing this blog. When I was in grade school, I was often bullied so I tried to fit in and be a ‘somehow’ bully-type student. This continues until secondary school, subconsciously until I reached my university days. I carried this until my first job in Philippines, I was working like I was competing for superb applause and praise from the people around me. I even came to the point where I skip lunch just to accomplish a deadline, seeking for pleasing recognition from my immediate supervisor. But when I met Jesus, He showed me that I was indeed created perfectly by God. That no one can turn me down, I am His son, I am precious, I am chosen! Daily revelations from God by meditating in His words have given me clear directions where to put my focus, energy, resources and time.

  1. You are God’s masterpiece

He has made everything beautiful and appropriate in its time. He has also planted eternity (a sense of divine purpose) in the human heart (a mysterious longing which nothing under the sun can satisfy, except God)—yet man cannot find out (comprehend, grasp) what God has done (His overall plan) from the beginning to the end.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 (AMP)

We are God’s masterpiece. An art done by famous artists can be imitated, yet it cannot be valued the same as the original copy. It is the same thing with us, we are unique masterpiece of God, no one can replace us. At the same time, we cannot imitate someone nor pretend to be someone and live our entire lives pretending.

In a recent interview to a YouTube-star turned celebrity in Philippines who underwent physical enhancement, he said that he is very happy in achieving what he wants (good physical looks) and with this (new look, new him) many people will love and like him.

Our happiness in life should not be dependent on other people. The Bible says, “He has made everything (including “us”) beautiful and appropriate in our time”. Man can fail us anytime, anywhere, but God’s love never fail, it never runs dry on us. “He remembered us in our weakness. His faithful love endures forever” (Psalm 136:23 NLT)

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
Than to trust in man.”

Psalm 118:8

Albert Einstein once said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid” We are God’s masterpiece and He is the only one who knows us, our purpose, and prepared the plans and ways for us even before we were born.

For You formed my innermost parts;
You knit me [together] in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks and praise to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.

Psalm 139:13-14

Henry Ford once found someone down the road fixing his car engine. He stopped and extend a help to a man. The man looks at him believing that Henry Ford cannot do anything. Suddenly, Henry Ford asked the man to start the engine and it worked. The man asked, “How did you know how to fix this car?” Henry Ford answered humbly, “It was me, who created that car”.

2. You Are Created For A Purpose

When I became a Christian, I learned by heart that I was created by God for a purpose. God did not allowed Moses to be adopted by the Pharaoh’s daughter for no reason, but to set free the Israelite from captivity. Through pursuing Christ above all of my insecurities in life, He is making a holistic change (change from within) in me.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a consecrated nation, a (special)people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies (the wonderful deeds and virtues and perfections) of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light

1 Peter 2:9

I cannot imagine that God has put me into leadership in our life group, being entrusted to do things that will usher His presence to the people. I can say that now, I am far from a shy, self-centered, me-myself-and-I me. But God put more compassion in my heart and love for God and His people.

3. Nothing Can Separate You From The Love of Christ

Pastor Steven Furtick emphasizes that we have been attached too much to the praises that we may get from others that even from time to time we check our social medias for the number of “likes”, “shares” and even ‘comments”.

As humans, we tend to seek tangible love from the people around us through their appreciation of us. We sometimes neglect the love of God because we can not see Him. A common saying says, “What you see is what you get”.

Not because you do not see God means He does not love you. He loves you and nothing can separate you fro the love of Christ.

As a conclusion, God created us perfectly for a purpose of showing how much He loves us. Despite how much we saw our imperfections, Jesus took all our infirmities so that we might be the righteousness of God through Christ Jesus.

Yes and Amen!

Likewise with God’s promises. It is alive. It is living. It is His Word. It has its meaning to us. Though some of His promises was spoken according to the history, was to the people of Israel, God will make it sure that He will make it happen to us as well. His promises will never be in past tense. It will always be in present and future tense. That is how faithful He is. 

For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.

2 Corinthians 1:20 NIV

These words “Yes and Amen!” are commonly heard from Christians. You will hear them saying all God’s promises are Yes and Amen. 

How are we able to hold firmly to God’s promises without wavering? 

God is sovereign. God is omniscient. God is omnipresent. God is omnipotent. These are all God’s characteristics. These powerful  words  of characteristics are more than enough to grasp the understanding by a human mind. But sometimes people are to over think of a simple phrase or words therefore, words became difficult to comprehend.

God’s promises is the same Yesterday, Today and Forever. 

God’s promises are made to fulfill to all God’s children may it be to Israelites or to Gentiles. But some of us will say, that we are now living in the New Testament. Whatever God promises written in the Old Testament that is for Israelites only. Only?

We must to understand that God is a faithful and just. He is fair. He made NO distinction over His children. May you live in Old Testament or now in New Testament. He is forever the same.

“God is the same yesterday, today and forever” Hebrews 13:8

 

Hold on the meaning of His Promises

God speaks to us through reading the Bible; Through the passages of each chapter, there comes a revelation to us; has its meaning according to our situation. That is how magnificent His words are to us. Because God’s Word is alive. It is God’s breath.

Likewise with God’s promises. It is alive. It is living. It is His Word. It has its meaning to us. Though some of His promises was spoken according to the history, was to the people of Israel, God will make it sure that He will make it happen to us as well. His promises will never be in past tense. It will always be in present and future tense. That is how faithful He is.

In Jesus His promises are fulfilled in us.

God loves us so much, that He gave His only begotten Son–Jesus. His Agape love to us is tangible and as crystal clear through Jesus. We don’t deserve our Salvation but He freely gave it all to us through Jesus.  Now and forever.

So for so many,  God had said His promises. Promises had mentioned and declared to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and to Israelites–though were mentioned in the past in history. Its meaning, its effectiveness, its revelation, God will make it happen to us. As long we believe in His Son, Jesus. We have His Blessed Distinction!

Because the Bible says, that God’s promises is always “Yes” in Christ Jesus. And  so through Jesus, God’s promises is fulfilled and we say “Amen“, God gets the glory.

These “Amen/s” from us,  as we utter it is a song to God’s ears, because it is a sign of hope, trust and dependence, and looking forward for the future. That God is faithful to fulfill His promises in us through Jesus!

God, thank you for Your Son, Jesus, because of Him, I have life, hope and a future. I have Your promises. I will hold on to it!

Hey friends, if you want to know more of His promises? Click God’s promises to find out more about it.

All glory to God💞

Agape,

IAMgoodstar 🌟



“In God’s will, by Faith!”

“In God’s will; by Faith”. Knowing that “God’s will” to me is always Victory, Triump, Success, Favor, Anointing and Blessing in His name. 

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to Him,
    and He will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6 was the first long verses that I memorized  in my Sunday School in my younger years. Long because it was 2 verses. Normally, our Sunday School teacher would then encourage us to memorize  one verse per week by giving it as an assignment to us and when we comes back to Sunday School on the next Sunday, we will recite one-by-one in front of the class.  I remember, the first verse that I memorized was John 3:16. 😉

So, as a Sunday School kid, we are taught just to memorize the verse and hold its meaning to have a meaning in our lives. It was deep for me to understand what my teacher is saying but I just followed. But then I asked her of what is the meaning of Proverbs 3:5-6.

It was one of the fondest and simplest memories, if I can recall in my Sunday School memory lane. With this simplest way of memorizing  longest verses I ever had first time, that had made a good impact in my life– physically and spiritually.

Let me tell you a story why? Since August is a National Day-month of Singapore. My story will be in tune with Singapore. Salute to this Country. All glory to God for this Nation❣

——-

22 July 2005, was my first overseas trip. It was not a leisure; it was work for an instance. Anxiousness and fear of the unknown thrilled my innermost. The only thing I knew and would always keep in my mind and my heart was I have a God who will always lead and guide me. It will always be “In God’s will, by Faith!”

Working abroad was possibly one in the list Filipinos may have. But not for me. I am just satisfied to stay in my homeland, having a middle-income salary for a living. Having a considered happy and contented family, dreaming of a small but decent house which will fit in an 80 (sqm) piece-of-land, in a low-profile but safe-sounded subdivision in Bulacan, Philippines, which actually, the first land property we bought as husband and wife.

Things that we want and we plan in our lives where not meant to materialize as exactly as it was, and it is. If not, you’re the best planner that God created in this planet Earth🤐  For me, to tell you honestly, I don’t plan for my life or for my family. What do I mean by this?  I do not plan according to 5 years, 10 years or even 20 years, of what I want to have or I am a successful or even an achiever of something — No, I don’t plan like that.  Seriously, I am working best on what is on my current plate. Leaning to rely and look forward on what is ahead of me along my journey.

When I was considered to work overseas, as an assistant manager in one of the F&B organizations in Singapore. I was excited. It was my first time, to go abroad and board to an airplane; to see and explore other country; to work in a diversified culture. Curiosity of “What’s in it for me in Singapore?” was my feeling before taking off.

The excitement was changed when I touched down Singapore. I was talking to myself and in my heart, that I am far off from my family. Homesick attacked my core 😦 — waters from eyes was starting to well-up. I became teary-eyed, while I think of my family. However, I made myself busy looking at the beauty of the surroundings of Changi Airport and I moved on. I focused myself to be excited in the new job that is waiting for me.

My two months of on-the-job-training was good.  I passed the assessments. Two months after, a pressing culture-shock, emotional disturbance had haunted my daily, whenever coming to work. It was a journey of bumps and rough roads as the culture was totally different. I had sleepless nights. Reaching home from work, straight to my rented room crying at my bed and just talking to God about my pains.

During those moments, God led me to my devotion daily, mostly in some passages in the books of Jeremiah, Isaiah and Psalms.  He comforts me. He reminded, He encouraged and He assured me of His Love, Faithfulness and Goodness. I penned down and journal my devotions, knowing “in God’s will, by Faith!” He will make me surpass all these trials and pains, that actually I am a Victor in His name!

I found my Bible and my small notebook to journal His great assurance of His faithfulness in my life.

20170501_173511
My Bible (TEB version)
20170501_181215
My small notebook, full of His words of assurance of my victory in His name.

20170501_181006

20170501_181300

It was indeed one the most treasured notebooks that I had. This small but terrible notebook was God’s epistle of His Faithfulness to my journey in Singapore. He is able to bless those who follow and believe in Him. I continued to rely on what was ahead that He has set before me, thus,  I can’t fathom out His ways and plans for me.

Isaiah 55:8-9

 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.

 “As the heavens are higher than the earth,  so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Six months after, was a different kind of ball of game. I had learned the Singapore way of living and working in a diversified culture. Gave my excellence in everything I do, knowing that I am working for the glory of God.

It wasn’t easy to live and work abroad, but with God on your side, every mess and unclear path ahead of you, will just magnificently will fall into places. My career was blessed. 12 years with my organization now and still counting. He had blessed me with achievements, promotions and the job role that I prayed for — as a trainer.(He knows my heart’s desire why?☝️😉) He is marvelous!

If I could have recall and look back how “in God’s will, by Faith” expression of my life had made me stronger and taught me to depend and rely on God alone.  It was the Proverbs 3:5-6 had summarizes it all; from the first longest memory verse that I had memorized from young that became my guiding principle in life. 

In God’s will, by Faith”  was my expression of faith. From the time that my Sunday School teacher explained it to me that Proverbs 3:5-6 is a “total dependence on God”. She had put it in a layman’s term for me to understand at a younger age on how to have a total dependence on God,  is to let your will depend on God’s will, that it will be by (your) Faith, God will answer your heart’s desires; that,  by (your) Faith, God will bless you even more; that,  by (your) Faith, God will move in your life even more tangibly—that in any problem, circumstance or messy situations I am in; and no recourse of human knowledge and might could have solve it, it was my dependency and reliance on God will come into picture.

In God’s will; by Faith”. Knowing that “God’s will” to me is always Victory, Triumph, Success, Favor, Anointing and Blessing in His name– in any seasons of my life

I praise God that I choose to depend, rely and trust “in God’s will; by Faith” , because when I flew to Singapore,  He has not blessed us physically, But most importantly, He has blessed our Spiritual life, even maturely through Hope Church Singapore!

This month of August is 52nd birthday-month of Singapore and 12 years of it was my journey of gratefulness to this country and most importantly to God; and will be counting for more. That I have a God who always lead and guide me. That whatever way will I take, it will always be “in God’s will; by Faith”; because “in God’s will; by Faith”, there is only One Way, through JESUS!

If you want to know more about Jesus? Please click here!

All glory to God❣

Agape,

IAMgoodstar🌟


Blessed Assurance

This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long;

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
O what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.

 
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long;
This is my story, this is my song,
Praising my Savior all the day long.

 
Perfect submission, perfect delight!
Visions of rapture now burst on my sight;
Angels descending bring from above
Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.

 


Perfect submission, all is at rest!
I in my Savior am happy and blessed,
Watching and waiting, looking above,
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.

 

by Fanny Crosby, 1873

 

If you want to know more about the Lord and how you can have a blessed assurance of your salvation in Jesus Christ, click here.

#GirlWithPinkBible

#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

 

Thank You, God for my Distinction!💞

God’s Distinction is His Faithfulness to deliver His promises to His children— favor of God and man is gratuity.  While Distinction in academic is you have to prove yourself for you to get these favors.

Thank you, God for my Distinction from You through Christ Jesus!

Have you ever get a D or HD grade from your report card given by your lecturer or professor in school? D is for Distinction and HD is for HighDistinction. The feeling was awesome at the moment you receive your report card. This was my feeling when I received HD and D from my Post Graduate Diploma in Organizational Psychology in one of the Graduate Schools in Singapore.

Awesome Feeling.

The feeling was awesome because the hard-work, and efforts were paid-off. For me to get these grades in my Post Graduate Diploma, I had to invest a lot of time in doing projects and presentations; sleepless nights as I am working full-time in the morning; and even study harder.

No hard-work; No results; No Distinction. Good to have a decent grades in your report card but Best if you could apply it in your workplace or even in your life aptly. What is the basis of “Distinction”  in your life and workplace if u had not proven as  such?

When you apply for a job for an instance, these grades will just be good in your curriculum vitae, which carries your–a more detailed academic background. It could make you for an advancement in the interview. Especially, fresh graduates. The only basis the HR will look upon,  is your academic background as  you do not have work experience. But still, you have to prove it, in as much as you could prove yourself with your ability. 

A feeling for a Moment.

My feeling of awesomeness was only for that moment. The Distinction that I received, doesn’t guaranteed my promotion. I still need to prove myself that I deserve a promotion, by putting a lot of effort, hard work and commitment to the best of my ability.

Then what is this Distinction in school all about?  Prestige? Respect? Fame? Honour? Higher profile? Better than the other? No. All these things you have to earn work hard for you to gain. Your Distinction in school doesn’t waive your sacrifices, sufferings and commitment to prove yourself to others. That is only academic. You still have to prove yourself. Full stop. 


Blessed Distinction

But God is giving us  a blessed Distinction, which you do not need to invest a lot of time, sacrifices and hard work to get it.  You do not need to prove yourself. It is freely given to us, Christians by our Faithful Saviour.

 “ ‘But on that day I will deal differently with the land of Goshen, where my people live; no swarms of flies will be there, so that you will know that I, the Lord , am in this land. I will make a distinction between My people and your people. This sign will occur tomorrow.’ ”Exodus 8:22‭-‬23 NIV

Distinction is a promised of God to His people.

In Scripture, Exodus 8:22-23, the Lord is telling Moses of what God’s divine plan to Israelites to show His wonder and faithfulness to Israelites. That He will make  His Distinction between His people (Israelites)  and Egyptians. To prove them that He will bring Israelites out from misery–that He is omnipotent–that He is the Lord (Exodus 7:5).
The Distinction that speaks Protection and Security.

But the Lord will make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and that of Egypt, so that no animal belonging to the Israelites will die.’ ”Exodus 9:4 NIV

The Lord promises His protection over our household– our livestock. That No plague of Hailstorm; plague locusts will ever destroy ours. Our job is secured. Our business is protected. Our finances is covered. 

The Distinction that speaks Favor and blessing. 

Tell the people who men and women alike are to ask their neighbors for articles of silver and gold.” 

(The Lord made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people (Israelites), and Moses himself was highly regarded in Egypt by Pharaohs officials and by the people.) Exodus 11:2‭-‬3 NIV

This is the amazing wonder of the Lord to us. We, Christians,  are distinctly  and blessedly favored. The word Favor is a big word for us from God as it defines eternal blessings to us.

His wonder and favor proves His distinction over us, that as He favors us and so with favor of man. “And so find favor and high esteem In the sight of God and man.”  Proverbs 3:4 NKJV. 

God’s Distinction is His Faithfulness to deliver His promises to His children— favor of God and man is gratuity.  While Distinction in academic is you have to prove yourself for you to get these favors.

Thank you, God for my Distinction from You through Christ Jesus!

All glory to God💞

Agape,

IAMgoodstar🌟

Find out on how to get Distinction without exerting too much effort, please click here.


Take My Life and Let It Be

Take my life
And let it be consecrated,
Lord, to Thee;

by Ernie Rettino & Debby Kerner Rettino

Take my life
And let it be consecrated,
Lord, to Thee;
Take my hands
And let them move
At the impulse of Thy love;
At the impulse of Thy love.

Take my feet
And let them be swift
And beautiful for Thee;
Take my voice
And let me sing always,
Only for my King;
Always, only for my King

Take my silver and my gold;
Not a mite would I withhold.
Take moments and my days;
Let them flow in ceaseless praise,
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Take my will and make it Thine;
It shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne,
It shall be Thy royal throne.

Take my life,
Let it be consecrated,
Lord, to Thee!

Kids Praise! 7
Arr. © 1988 Rettino/Kerner Publishing. – www.psalty.com
All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured.

If you want to know more about the Lord and how you can offer your life unto Him, click here.

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#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

Life of a Christian

We can’t blame people who tagged Christians as hypocrites. They don’t even know what they are saying. Love them anyway. They do not understand that Christianity is a life-time process. It grows. It blossoms. It functions. It is an organism. Life of a Christian mature.

To be a Christian is not an easy way of living; it’s not a trademark to be famous; Or even a superior status quo. Christian not even a brand to look for and get it. It is being quoted as hypocrite(s). It may have been off for those Christians who will read this article and may even not to accept it,  especially the latter. But this is true which perceived by some non-believers and even the socalled professing christians—But! Read through.

Many at times, people around us, if they knew you are a Christian, they will  assume–you are gentle, kind and easy-to-believe. If these were not seen from your gesture and action. Judgement is served—you are hypocrite; and these were only a few of their criteria.

It’s true that it is difficult to have it said and done. “I am a Christian”; “I am a Christ follower”; “I am a Believer”. We are all attune to have these identity. That when you said it, you have to display it.

Come to think of it. Do they have sense in that saying? Yes. I believe so. It is time for us to wake up in our slumber, Christians. Rise up and Walk. Christians who say it by mouth must have it in his heart. We are tagged how Christ did here on earth. But isn’t true? We proclaim that we are Christ Ambassadors. But, what we say is different from the way we live.

“Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree is known by its fruit.  

Matthew 12:33‭

Jesus speaks about the tree and its fruit. It is how we, Christians identified. We can’t run away from it. It is difficult to commit to the standard of God because we are only human; and if we tend to rely in our own might and power.

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

John 15:5 NKJVwp-image-1457337255

But if we will abide in Him, and He abode in us, it is now the work of the Holy Spirit who lives in us. It is not by our might nor by power, but it is by the Spirit of Lord,  Zechariah 4:6. This how He worked in our Spiritual life.

If we will allow the Holy Spirit to work in our lives, we will realize His amazement. The normal things that we used to do when we are in our own might will not be normal anymore. You are more careful as the conviction is prominent whether it is aligning to God’s will. The reality is clear to you, that you are no longer in a physical realm but  in spiritual realm.

That’s where life as a Christian mature. When we understand that our physical body is in a spiritual encounter. It matures when his faith became child-like. When he give his full dependence on Him. Trusting on Him. Relying on Him. 

We can’t blame people who tagged Christians as hypocrites. They don’t even know what they are saying. Love them anyway. They do not understand that Christianity is a life-time process. It grows. It blossoms. It functions. It is an organism. Life of a Christian, mature.

Let them understand that Christianity is a relationship; a relationship to our Creator. The deeper we establish our relationship to our Creator; the deeper we know Him; the deeper we will walk in Spirit and in Truth —and that is His amazement.

Let us continue to walk in His presence. As the road in this world is rocky. Even turmoil is present along the journey of our faith. But we will conquer it, because in Him, we are more than Conquerors – Romans 8:37.

All glory to God!💞

Agape,

IAMgoodstar🌟

If you want to understand deeper how to become a Conqueror? Click here to find out.

Knowing God: Choose Willingness Over Readiness

 

 

 

 

 

“But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed and do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled” (1 Peter 3:14)

 

We are taught in school about principles, laws, and even theories in order for us to gain an understanding about many things. While trainings and hands-on activities give us better perspective on how things happen in reality.

Julius Ceasar recorded the earliest version of the proverb, “Experience is the teacher of all things”. Experiences may not be favorable all the time. The bible says in James 1:2-3, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance”.

Therefore, to know something better, it is best for us to experience it and have personal encounters – this involves “willingness” not “readiness”. An anonymous quote goes “How much knowledge you gain depends on your willingness to learn”

In our relationship with Jesus, we need to be “willing” not “ready” – to suffer, to feel intimidated by other’s comfortable life, you will be troubled. No one will be ready and accept being on suffering, intimidated and troubled.

But the Lord said, “You are blessed”

Why do most of us perceive “readiness” as an important factor in knowing Jesus Christ?

1. Most think that competence is a requirement.

Therefore, we desire to prepare ourselves to be competent for Jesus. But the bible says, “Not that we are competent to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God” (2 Corinthians 3:5).

Our relationship with God is not like an employer-employee set-up wherein competency in our field of work is the top requirement to be in, and if we fail to meet competency requirements we can be terminated.

We should be like a child that performs in front of the crowd without fear but with gentleness, our performance may be not as excellent when compared with professional performers, but we must remember that our parents’ love never decline and because we are willing, we make them proud and happy. “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have” (1 Corinthians 8:12)

2. Most think that they must be deserving for God.

It is written, “For many are invited but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:14). We are invited by God for a personal relationship,  only few were chosen. Why? Many of us thinks we do not deserve being into such relationship because of our ‘sins’.

Most have the concept of sin which boils down from arguments over right and wrong. Biblically, it is defined as something that falls below the perfect standard of God.

As we receive Jesus as our personal Lord and savior, we must take baby-steps and soon bigger steps as show of reverence to him. It is doing something out of the grace that we receive from God – we must choose to be willing not ready.

Paul is clear with his message to the people of Ephesus about being deserving. He said, “Walk in the manner of calling to which you have been called” (Ephesians 4:1). Same with the Colossians and he said, “Walk in manner worthy of the Lord” (Colossians 1:10).

3. Most focus on ‘status quo’

Status quo is defined as the status on which we are now. We used to conform to the norma of this world, whereas the bible says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2).

Millenials are now living in a fast-paced, perfect-seeking world to feel the sense belongingness in their outermost being, but full of voids from within.

Most of us think that we can do great things for God by becoming great first on our own. “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things – and the things that are not – to nullify the things that are” (1 Corinthians 1:27-28).

Apostle Paul pleaded three times to God to remove the spirit of being conceited.But this is what the Lord revealed to him, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me (2 Corinthians 12:9)
We must be “willing” not “ready”. God used people who are ‘incompetent’, ‘undeserving’ and ‘ordinary’ for His greater glory:

1. Abraham was old but he is “willing to wait on the fulfillment of God’s promise that he will have a son, and he will be the father of many nations”;

2. David was a young sheperd but he is “willing to show that His trust is in God”, because of this he killed Goliath and became the King after King Saul;

4. Jonah ran away. He was not “ready”. But as God called him, God’s calling will remain still. Isaiah 46:10 says “My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.” He will make us roll over to be “willing”.

5. Peter’s up and down discipleship journey showed that being a disciple is a matter of the heart. But despite this, Peter has been a “willing” disciple – from having shortcomings he became a strong church foundation. When we look at the situation when He encountered Jesus, he may not be “ready” – but who can say know to the Messiah?

6. Matthew persecuted church.
But despite of all their being less, they have one thing in common – they are “Willing” to be used by God for a purpose that will give glory to Him and Him alone.

Will you be willing to know more about Jesus, and have that personal relationship and encouters with Him? Pastor Simon Eng said in one of his preaching at HOPE Church Singapore, “We cannot rely on historical faith and encounters alone. We need to have own fresh, encounter with God”

The first step in having a relationship with Jesus is to accept Him as you personal Lord and Saviour. It does not require ‘readiness’ where competence, being deserving or anyone’s status is being looked up. Come to Jesus with a willing heart that sees no fault nor flaws but love. He was not sent by the Father into the world but to save the world through Him – He is our salvation.

God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good.

Whenever I read this verse, I always imagine myself trying a new flavor of ice cream. The moment of that first bite and then sweetness and creaminess comes right after. A burst of wonderful flavors in every spoonful, I could taste chocolate chips, almonds, cookie dough. Oh yes! What a pleasure to my palette! Then a signal to my brain will be sent saying “This is really good! I will definitely buy again!” This scenario is the simplest way I could express how this verse means, well, generally speaking.

2859Taste and see that Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him

Psalms 34:8 (NIV)

Whenever I read this verse, I always imagine myself trying a new flavor of ice cream. The moment of that first bite and then sweetness and creaminess comes right after. A burst of wonderful flavors in every spoonful, I could taste chocolate chips, almonds, cookie dough. Oh yes! What a pleasure to my palette! Then a signal to my brain will be sent saying “This is really good! I will definitely buy again!” This scenario is the simplest way I could express how this verse means, well, generally speaking.

To taste the goodness of the Lord is undoubtedly inevitable but the devil has his ways of making us become blind. Unbelief has always been a part of my daily spiritual battles and to tell you frankly, it has contributed a lot to make me spiritually paralyzed before. I saw myself being tempted with what the world could offer, “The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world; 1 John 2:16”,  and it occurred not only to me, but this actually happens to all of us, even our beloved Jesus Christ was tempted. In Matthew 4:8-10, it says that Satan tried to tempt Jesus, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”. Do not get me wrong, God created the world and everything in it displays is glory (Psalms104:24-25; Psalms19:1), but when we put God out of the picture, we give birth to desires leading to pride, greed, self-glorification, and lust that causes us to take pleasure in sin.

They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed.

Ephesians 4: 18-19

 

BUT DO NOT WORRY! This is temporary. We were never made to stay in darkness. Tests and troubles will always be here in our midst (John 16:33) but God will ALWAYS provide a way for us to see Him. We just need to do our part. Let me share my devotions about this wonderful word of God.

I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.
These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.

Isaiah 42:16


Taste and See



Then God said “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole Earth and every tree that has fruit in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the Earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground–everything that has breath of life in it–I give every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw all that He made, and it was very good. And there was morning–the sixth day.

Genesis 1:29-31

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I think it is safe to say that it is IMPOSSIBLE for us not to have tasted the goodness of our heavenly Father. In creation itself, the whole Earth was purely made for the our benefit and in our daily lives, we see God providing everything we “need”, may it be asked for or not. Every single thing is orchestrated by God himself so we could see His glory, resulting to our hearts being humbled and admitting that “apart from God, WE ARE NOTHING” (John 15:5)

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

Matthew 6:25-27


The Lord is Good



There are no words to express how good our God is. Most of the time, we see His goodness at every successful job interview,  in sickness that has been healed, in times of reconciled relationships, in celebrating a new birth and of course, Christmas bonuses. YES! This defines the human perception of “goodness”. It is everything that makes us feel happy, secured, loved and every nice feeling you could come up with. But what about those times when you lose someone you really love or in failed relationships especially in marriages and families, during times of abandonment and betrayal of a friend. Can we consider this a part of His goodness?

In typical movie plot, there will always be a character living a problematic life. His parents are separated, and he lives with his father whose always drunk every single day. He has no money for school, therefore he makes a living through selling drugs. Eventually, he gets involved with the wrong people and because of this, he will live out of shame, then he blames his parents and questions, “GOD! If you exist and if you truly love me, then why do you let these things happen to me?” It is a question that most of us have thought of. I did for sure. I never lived a perfect life. I had those days when I felt like, because I did something, SO WRONG, that maybe God is punishing me. I experienced those sleepless nights where I would cry my heart out to God just so He could take away my pains. Everybody hits rock bottom. No man is an iron man, we all feel pain.

Human nature may never grasp how He works in our lives but by knowing God, we can be assured that in whatever circumstances we are facing, He is always in control and He is always good. What He is doing is MEANT FOR OUR OWN GOOD, therefore, we just need to obey and TRUST Him.

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“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the Earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 58:8-9

The life of Jesus Christ is a perfect example of obedience in times of pain. He never questioned the will of God. He obeyed fully even if He was hated, persecuted, and crucified. It is not because He had superpowers not to feel pain, or that He is invincible and fearless. The bible shows that during the night before He was put to captivity, he was in great distress because he knows how excruciating his crucifixion will be.

And He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be troubled and deeply distressed.  Then He said to them, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch.”

Mark 14: 33-34

Further more…

He went a little farther, and fell on the ground, and prayed that if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. And He said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will.”

Mark 14: 35-36

If you and I were in that situation, we would be begging for the same thing. Worse, we will be overcome by our emotions. I may have escaped from that garden and run for my own life.  This is where “unbelief” and “lack of faith” comes in. It is hard to believe that situations that break and hurt us could be seen as something good. And if we do not know God, the devil comes in like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8) He bombards us with so many lies and deceitful words, we get devoured by our own emotions that lead to depression and anxiety. It causes our heart to turn away from God because we have doubted Him. This is unbelief.

Having said that, it is very important for us to know how to combat unbelief by genuinely knowing the God we serve. It is important for us to know Him as good and perfect, all-knowing, all-powerful, merciful and loving Father.  We should do our part as His sons and daughters, to know Christ by accepting Him as our Lord and Savior and by equipping ourselves with his word.


Blessed is the one who takes his refuge in Him


After this, the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”

Genesis 15:1

What makes you feel blessed? Great health? A successful career? Sixty years of marriage? Seeing your sons and daughters to graduate? Having your own house and a car? Luxury? Being able to travel? All these things, we consider them blessings. But do we count having God as a blessing? The answer is WE SHOULD, and as matter of fact, Him being our refuge is the cherry on top of every blessing we have received in our entire lives.

Merriam-Webster dictionary defines refuge as “a shelter or protection from danger or distress; a place that provides shelter or protection”. So what does it mean when we say that God is our refuge?

I’ve always seen God as my parent. This is how I make Him my refuge. He is my loving Father. A parent loves his son or daughter no matter what (including of all the headaches and problems caused by his child) and I could say that God is my perfect refuge. Here are some reasons why:

  • He never changes and He is always present. I call to my heavenly Father anytime and anywhere. He is everywhere. 

 

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.

Revelation 22:13

 

“Am I a God who is near,” declares the LORD, “And not a God far off? “Can a man hide himself in hiding places So I do not see him?” declares the LORD “Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?” declares the LORD.

Jeremiah 23:23-24

 

  • He is Faithful. I have lived 28 years, 336 months and woke up to 10,220 mornings and not one of those days where in God did not renew His love for me. Praise God! Hallelujah!

 

The LORD’S loving kindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassion never fail. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23

 

  • There is nothing He could not do. He has no limitations. He is the source of all wisdom and knowledge, strength and power. He makes everything new and beautiful.

 

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Matthew 19:26

 

  • He loves us unconditionally. I could give countless testimonies of His goodness in my life. You may or may not agree with me but this is what I chose to believe, that the God I truly serve did not deserve a daughter like me because I am sinner, but that did not stopped Him from loving me first.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

This is the most significant reason why we are blessed to have God as our refuge. It is because of His unconditional love, and this explains my faith. Jesus loved us so much that he took our place to die at the cross. It brings me to my knees when I think of what He has done for me, despite me being a sinner. I praise Him because He has met my heart and I have come to accept Him as my Lord and Savior. I could not live this life alone. I am weak and fragile and I’m not smart enough to know what’s best for me. The need for a refuge is a must and maybe you are like me. You need someone to rely on, someone who could save you from all the confusion, worries, problems or you just need someone to save you from your own-self.

I would like to share the love of Jesus Christ to you. In Him, we are equal and there is no need to pretend. He sees everything even our deepest darkest secrets, knows our weakness, he keeps track of every tear you have shed and he feels your pain. He will turn you to something new and in His eyes, you are more beautiful than the glorious sky. Genuine Salvation is found only in Jesus Christ.

“He himself  bore our sins” in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”

1 Peter 2: 24

Jesus answered, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

John 14:6