Christ: self denial and dying to one’s self

To be like Christ, to die to one self is to accept the lordship of Father God in one’s life and to place an immense urgency to honor and obey whatever His will is without any regards to self and other people.. no ifs, no buts..

Self denial and dying to one’s self..

I thought I had a different understanding of what self denial and dying to one self means..

To be like Christ, to die to one self is to accept the lordship of Father God in one’s life and to place an immense urgency to honor and obey whatever His will is without any regards to self and other people.. no ifs, no buts..

Dying to onself is to be like..

Samuel who was the faithful priest who did all according to what is in the heart and mind of God (1 Samuel 2:35)..

David who was regarded to be the man after God’s own heart because he did all of God’s will (Acts 13:22)..

And

Jesus whose food was to do the will of God and to finish His work (John 4:34)..

So I urge you brethren, when we pray, let’s take heart and mean (with a humbled, accepting heart of submission) what the Lord’s prayer said:

Matthew 6:9-10 NKJV
In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.

Unhindered, unopinionated
Absolutely good and infinitely wise will of our sovereign God

Psalm 115:3 NKJV
But our God is in heaven
He does whatever He pleases.

I pray that the LORD God Almighty bestow upon you the grace to desire to receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. Here’s a prayer for you.

#GirlwithpinkBible

#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

Be Still! Rejoice! He is God!

Break out into singing all you children of the Jehovah Sabaoth! Be still! Rejoice! He is God! He is exalted among the nations! He is exalted in the earth! Be still! Rejoice!

Yesterday, I was taken aback by a post in facebook. On the post was one of our church’s original songs entitled, “Purihin Pangalan Niya” (personal translation: Praise His Name) and who originally composed it. What surprised me was that it was composed by the youth of Hope Tacloban in Philippines as a thanksgiving song after these youth and their families where transferred to their new houses whilst Typhoon Yolanda was wreaking dire havoc. The song is well loved as its lyrics and tempo will bring about singing and dancing full of joy and praises to God.

Such a timely reminder, as today Strait Times reported 7 new cases of the 2019 nCOV infection here in Singapore. Some cases are near home which whispered much fear in my heart. At the same time, the words, “Be still and know that I am God.” lingered in my mind. Looking for more comfort, I read through the whole chapter of Psalm 46:

“God is our refuge and strength,
A[a] very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the [b]midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God,
The holy place of the [c]tabernacle of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be [d]moved;
God shall help her, just [e]at the break of dawn.
The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved;
He uttered His voice, the earth melted.

The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord,
Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire.

10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah”

What an encouragement from the LORD! He is our refuge and strength! He is always present and He will help in any trouble whether it was earthquakes, crumbling mountains or roaring oceans. He gives us an assurance that He is always with His children. He is powerful and sovereign above it all even when nations are in chaos and kingdoms crumble. Desolation and wars aren’t something He is unconscious of, but rather, in His wisdom and judgement, His works. He is Jehovah Sabaoth, Lord of Hosts and He is with us! What do we need to do? Do we fear? Do we panic? Do we give in to defeat? No! We need to be still and know that He is God! Our God, the Lord of the Heavenly Armies! Again, we need to be still and know He is God! The God who doesn’t change! Whose faithfulness and mercies cover a thousand generations!

Somehow, I understood how those youth from Tacloban were able to compose such a wonderful song of praise amidst much lost and sorrow. The typhoon may have taken their homes, but the LORD God have provided new homes for them. From the provision God rendered to them comes a quiet confidence that He was with them during the storm, their very present help in that trouble, thereby yielding a song full of rejoicing!  Truly, His name is worthy of highest praises!

So instead of being discouraged of this rising number of 2019 n-COV infection, I pray that we stand firm, not letting fear seize our hearts. Instead, we hold our ground and continue to believe that our LORD God is the God Almighty above all things! No matter how this outbreak unfolds, God is God! Break out into singing all you children of the Jehovah Sabaoth! Be still! Rejoice! He is God! He is exalted among the nations! He is exalted in the earth! Be still! Rejoice!

If you would like to have this stillness in Jehovah Sabaoth through Jesus Christ is, I greatly and lovingly encourage you to click this.

 

 #GirlWithPinkBible

#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

 

 

 

 

Thoughts and Prayers on Wuhan

Isaiah 59:19 KJVS
”So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.”

Just recently, fear has come across the world with regards to the outbreak from the 2019 novel coronavirus or commonly known as the “Wuhan virus”. News, videos of stories, even rumours about this incident are all over the internet. Masks are flying off the shelves despite the higher than usual prices.

Don’t get me wrong. The moment we had a suspected case in our ward, wherein I was currently finishing my shift, gave me both chills (as the suspected patient was only a few meters away from me) and relief (as just finish work and was about to go home). This patient was tested negative by the way.

But in all these things, I know and believe that our Almighty God is sovereign. He is above all things even above this seemingly catastrophe that has struck the world on the beginning of this new decade we are all looking forward to.

Frankly I am more concerned of the misleading public information that had created unnecessary fear and worry. Panic is a very dangerous thing wherein we act out of impulse and not out of wisdom. My uttermost prayer is that God will not only protect us from the virus itself but will generously bestow wisdom unto His children in choosing what to believe in and how to vigilantly act on it.

Bear in mind and in heart that if God was sovereign over the fall of man, if He was sovereign over the reign of kings, if He was sovereign over rise and fall of civilizations, if He was sovereign over wars, tsunamis, hurricanes, floods, births and deaths, well.. surely, surely, He is sovereign over this Wuhan pandemic. All these things don’t change the fact that HE IS GOD, THE GREAT I AM whom we can trust and depend on as HE would faithfully never leave us nor forsake us.i

I remembered one wise pastor said “God shakes the heavens and nations with natural disasters and turmoil for the fulfilment of His divine plan and agenda.”

His thoughts are not our thoughts, His ways are not our ways. We may not know what His agenda is, but we know who God is and hopefully believe in His supremacy in all the universe.

I’m not saying that we should be laxed about the matter, no! Vigilant personal hygiene, healthy lifestyle and diligent prayer should be in our utmost practice at present. But do not let fear dictate your actions. Let the Holy Spirit within do that. Continue to rest in God’s almighty power and infinite wisdom.

And if ever, we will get infected. If ever, Singapore will have another outbreak like SARS, I pray that we remember His immutable faithfulness. He said in Isaiah 43 that when we pass through the waters, He will be with us. He promised that when we walked through the fire, we will not be burned.

And in any case of  death, I pray that God, in all the abundance of His grace, mercy and love, will give you peace that even in death, He is sovereign and that precious in His sight is the death of His saints. (Psalm 116:15)

Coincidentally (Again, emphasis on I don’t believe in coincidences), our Hope Conference theme this year is “We Have Won”. Yes! WE HAVE WON. WE HAVE WON. WE HAVE WON IN CHRIST JESUS! I pray that these words resonate to every believer’s hearts, minds and spirits. Let’s press on to the victory we have in Christ Jesus! I’ll say it again,

We have won in Christ Jesus!

Isaiah 59:19 KJVS

“So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.”

#WeHaveWon

 

If you would like to know who Jesus Christ is, in whom we have the victory, I greatly and lovingly encourage you to click this.

#GirlWithPinkBible

#TimeSpentWithGodIsTimeBestSpent

The Heart of the Father

“Communication” or “the way we interact with someone” (this is done by talking, facial expressions, hand gestures, and in our generation today we do communications through Facebook, sending SMS, voice call and even video call). The way we communicate with someone determines how we value them.

Examples:

We can talk freely with our friends and laugh about funny and silly things.

When we talk to our parents, teachers or someone older than us we always talk with respect.

When we talk to God, we talk through “Prayer”

“Prayer” is the way on how we talk to God when we thank Him for good grades, nice toys, and all the blessings He has given us. In the same way prayer is the way when we ask God for something that we wanted.

“Prayer is the way on how we talk to God”

We can learn through the Bible that Jesus talks to God the Father through prayer. In fact, Jesus taught us how to talk to God the Father in our prayers. Let us all read Matthew 6:9-13

A. God’s Word

Matthew 6:5-13

9 “This is how you should pray. Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy.
10 May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today the food we need,
12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
13 And don’t let us yield to temptation but rescue us from the evil one.

B. Teaching

As we talk to Father God in our prayer, we are looking into the good heart of God who hears all our prayers. By knowing His heart, we get to know His character as our Father which Jesus revealed by teaching us how to communicate with God through prayer.

Today, we are going to get to know the character of God the Father by looking into His heart through our prayer.

1. Key Point 1: God the Father is Powerful

“Power is the capability to do something.”

Who among you watch Marvel movies? Alright, the characters in different movies have their super powers that enables them to fight the bad guys. (Side note: But among them there One and Only Super Hero that saved the World, and His name is Jesus)

Most kids consider their father as “super heroes” or “super daddy” because of the strength that they can see from them. Our fathers are strong. They can lift us up and carry us in their arms. We often ride on their back and ask them to run around while they are carrying us.

What does the Bible teach about Father God’s being Powerful?

9 This is how you should pray. Our Father in heaven, may Your name be kept holy. 10 May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. (Matthew 6:9-10 NLT)

Have you noticed how Jesus addressed God the Father as “Our” this means that we share one Father (with Jesus) who is in heaven.

Father God is so powerful (Jeremiah 10:12 NIRV “But God used His power to make the earth”) that by His spoken words He was able to create everything. In Genesis 1:1-2 NLT it is written “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

“But God used His power to make the earth” (Jeremiah 10:12 NIRV)

There are a lot of stories in the Bible where God showed his power. God even parted the Red Sea so that His sons and daughters, the Israelites can escape the chasing Egyptians.

Guide Question:

1. We all know that God is powerful, and He created everything that we can see around us. Name 3 of God’s creation which you like the most. Share why you like it.

2. God the Father is Provider

Can you still recall a moment when you ask something from your father? Like a new toy, a bicycle, a chocolate, or even a day in an amusement park?

We all grow up knowing that our father wakes early in the morning because he prepares to go to work. But have you ever wondered why he is doing all this thing? It is because he needs to provide for you.

Jesus showed how praying to our Daddy God connects us to him not because we need something but because we know that is our Great Provider (Jehovah Jireh)

10 Give us today the food we need (Matthew 6:11 NLT)

I remember another story in the Bible when it was evening, and there were a lot of people following Jesus. So, Jesus told his disciples to look for food, but they said that there were no nearby store and even if there is, they need to spend big amount of money to feed the people. Until one child offered his 5 loaves and 2 fishes. Let us look into the Bible what happened.

20 They all ate as much as they wanted, and afterward, the disciples picked up twelve baskets of left (Matthew 14:20 NLT)

Guide Questions:

1. Can you still recall the time when you asked from your father something? What was that thing? Did he give it to you?

2. What are the things you are asking Father God right this time? Share it to your life group and find a partner to pray for it.

3. God the Father is Protector

Our father is our life time protector. A “protector” is “someone with the ability to keep us secured against any harm or danger”

A “protector” is “someone with the ability to keep us secured against any harm or danger”

This photo of the father protecting his son went viral because of the great love of the father to protect the son from getting wet because of the rain.

This is the same love is what God is giving to you.

13 And don’t let us yield to temptation but rescue us from the evil one (Matthew 6:13 NLT)

Whenever King David is in trouble, he writes a Psalms to God to show how God protects him despite there are a lot of troubles. In one of his Psalm, he wrote:

2 “The Lord is my protector; He is my strong fortress. My God is my protection, and in Him I am safe…” (Psalm 18:2 GNT)

Guide Questions:

1. Your father loves you so much that’s the reason why he protects you. What are the usual things that your father protects you from? Do you follow him? If yes, why? If no, why?

2. What are the things that makes you sad or worry? Share it to your group so you can pray for one another.

C. A Short Story About Father

Three boys are in the school yard bragging about their fathers. The first boy says, “My dad writes a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it poem, and they give him 50$”

The second boy says, “That’s nothing. My dad writes a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a song, they give him $100”

The third boy says, “I beat both of you. My dad inspired other men to write down on pieces of paper. Those pieces of paper is what we now call “Bible” – His name is God!

Father God is a Forgiving Father

God’s character does not stop in just being a Powerful Father, a Great Provider and an All-Time Protector but He extends His love by forgiving our sins through Jesus Christ who save us all by dying in the cross for our sins.

12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us. (Matthew 6:12 NLT)

Looking into the heart of the Father, we can see that His Power, Provisions and Protections are not because He is able but rather to keep us in dwelling in His Presence to satisfy us. Satisfaction is knowing who He is and His plan for our lives, especially His salvation plan for us.