Showing posts from 2008

Trusting in God

“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said ot him...” Romans 4:18 The story of Abraham is somewhat amazing. If you think about it, he was old, his wife was old, yet he was promised to have offspring that would be more numerous then the stars, but at that time he didn’t even have a kid yet. Yet God miraculously provided. He gave him what was promised. That must have taken a lot of faith. Trusting in God for that long of a time, to hold on to a promise that was given for that long, that is faith. Now Abraham could have given up anytime and no one would have blamed him. It was after all, for all arguments sake, impossible to father a child at his wife’s age. And it’s not like he wasn’t trying. They were probably trying to conceive a child for maybe three decades but were not successful. That’s a long time to hold out in faith. That is a long time to pass and during that time he must have gone through some sor


“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.... In the same way let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” This command from the Sermon on the Mount is one of those that cannot be ignored. Well, none of them should be ignored, but this one in particular grabs me. Jesus says it let your light shine before men. Let it shine, show it off, be bright. So that they may see your good deeds and praise God. See your good deeds. The implication is that you not only got to say your are a Christian, but also you got to really live it. You got to really dig deep and follow God with all your heart and also at the same time you go to follow through with action. Sometimes I think that I am around Christians way too much. Way too much. I long for the times where I can hang out with non Christians and just hear life with them. Also I would love to be closer to the action of the non Christian. There is where

The Call to Follow

“Come, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” -Jesus (Matt. 5:19) Jesus when he calls you it is very bold and very direct. When he gives a command there is power, authority, and influence behind Him. Well, he is God of course, but what does this mean, for him to be so bold and connected that people just follow. I love this verse, it just beckons you to listen, and stirs a fire within you. Or if you have been following for quite some time this should reignite the fire that so burns within. The call to be a fisher of men. What an amazing call. Every time I read this verse it just makes me stop and reexamine my call to be a fisher of men. What have I been doing to be an influence to the kingdom of God? How have I been a fisher of men? Often times I get caught up in too much of me, and I don’t closely listen to the Father’s call. Being a fisher of men, entails so much. To be the light in the midst of darkness, to bring hope to the hopeless, to be an ambassador of ju

God's Awesome Plans...

“I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted.” Job 42:2 After chapters of complaining and probably things not going well, God has now spoken. Job did exactly what any human would do, sit still and and be in awe and wonder. God is powerful above all things. He can do a things that we cannot fathom, he will complete things and bring them full circle. God is the beginning and the end. I love this verse, it just makes you sit and reflect upon God. It make so you sit and just say wow. No plan of his can be thwarted. No plans of his can be changed, revised, or stopped. When God sets it in motion, it’s good as done. I know it’s hard for me to fully comprehend this. Especially when I’m in the middle of a problem. Like now. I thought God wanted me to do something, but it has been so far very difficult. Daily I am faced with obstacles and filled with a little doubt about the direction I am on. Or one area of my life suffers because of decisions I felt t

The Power of Pain

“I cry out to you, O God, but you do not answer, I stand up, but you merely look at me.” Job 30:20 Though this is heartbreaking, this is a very true reality. Job here is cracking under the pressure, cracking under the pain, cracking as the weight of God presses into him. Job here is begging for an answer, but nothing is coming together. He is under great distress, but he feels he is God is gone. But that is power of pain, it begins to mess with your mind, you doubt, you feel as if nothing is going together. And when relief does not come, you feel ignored, left out, and sometimes forgotten. Pain can do two things; build you up or break you down. Here after 30 chapters Job is beginning to break down. I love to read Job, though sometimes its long, Job has so much for us to learn. I can dig deep and see that Job is very much like me. An everyday Christian trying to live a life pleasing to our Saviour, but getting hammered by the winds and rains of life. When the storm is too g

When God Moves... He moves...

“While Peter was wondering abut the meaning of the vision, the men sent by Cornelius found out where Simon’s house was and stopped at the gate. They called out, asking if Simon who was known as Peter was staying there.” Acts 10:17-18 This event is just proof of how God really works everything together. Here, God was preparing the way for the non Jews to be welcomed into the Kingdom through Jesus. God was ready to take the message to the world. And what is really interesting is that there was a lot of things that needed to come together in order for this to happen. God needed a faithful gentile to bring Peter over to his place. Then God had to give Peter a reason to go. God intricately weaved plans together so that His glory was shown. This story is amazing in itself. It is a truly great to see God work in such ways. Sometimes I look at stories like these and wonder if they still happen today. I know that God is still working and will continue to work in miraculous ways.

He gives and takes away

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” -Job (Job 1:21) What a statement. This is profound. Despite his circumstances, Job praises the Lord. That takes some real commitment and some real dedication to the Lord to say. I don’t think I can fully appreciate this statement. It must have been a struggle to loose what was pretty much everything, and in those days they did not have like a safety net or like welfare for people to go to. If you lost everything then it is exactly that, you lost everything. It is a weird time in my life for this verse to come along. I am in the midst of a financial hardship with really no relief in sight and bills coming down my throat. It’s not like it is going to get any easier too. However, it is difficult to get to the end of the maze, when every time you make a turn, on what you think is for the better, it turns out to be a dead end. It

Use Money to Gain...

”I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed in to eternal dwellings.“ Luke 16:9 Interesting passage. Here Jesus states it is okay to make money if you use it for eternal practices. At leas that is what one commentary says. But it makes total sense. Why not use money to gain important results? Why must shouldn’t we use money to gain eternal wealth. The whole passage is about stewardship. But it is also about how we need to use the resources to gain friends. The important thing is to gain friends. Go save the world, that is what the passages means. God gives resources of any type for you to steward. Use it to go save people and save the world. Do things right, but be creative in what you do. This is an awesome verse. Jesus states take every angle and go for it. Look at how to accomplish something and just go for it, and do it as wisely as possible. Use all the available resources at your disposal so that t

Auto Correct

“I know, O Lord, that a man’s life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps. Correct me, Lord, but only with justice- not in your anger, lest you reduce me to nothing.” Jer. 10:23-24. So I guess I am not the only one. Here Jeremiah openly confesses that he at times tries to direct his own steps. Kind of weird considering that this guy had a constant direct connection with God. He was living in the “end times” of Judah. He was given prophecy to speak, direct answers from the God, and all the fixings of being a spiritual leader at that time, but still he had problems with a small problem called “control”. Personally I like being in control. You feel as if you have a say, you have some sort of bearing of what is going on, and most of all you feel like you are in command. Kind of like Captian Kirk on the star ship Enterprise, or like Han Solo in Star Wars. They were the Captian of the ship and don’t let anyone tell them otherwise. There is a sense of power, comfo


“They worshiped the Lord, but they also served their own gods in accordance with the customs of the nations from which they had been brought. To this day they persist in their former practices. They neither worshiped the Lord nor adhere to the decrees and ordinances, the laws and commands that the Lord gave the descendants of Jacob, whom he named Israel.” 2 Kings 17:33-34 After a hostile take over, a deportation, and another warning from God, the Israelites still did not listen. The continued in their ways. The word that stuck out though that was used in this translation, was that the word persisted. Persist in the dictionary means “continue stead fast or firmly in some state.” Another definition says it means “to last or endure tenaciously.” Here the Israelites instead of turning back to god, they continued stead fast in their ways and endured it with tenacity. Here their persistence worked against them. If they applied the same energy of persistence to pursue the Lord with

Beautiful Attraction

“You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace. How delightful is your live, my sister, my bride! How much more pleasing is our love than wine, and the fragrance of your perfume than any spice!” Song of Songs 4:9-10 In the book of Song of Songs, Solomon gives us a very graphic, visual, and stirring description of what a God centered love relationship with a man and a woman can look like. Make no mistake about it, this is not an analogy of God's love for man, this book is purely a love relationship between a man and a woman.  It is very passionate, exciting, erotic, and at the same time, it is intimate, gentle and sweet. Which I wouldn’t expect anything less, being that an awesome God created love and sex. To have this kind of passion for another person is not only good, but it is very good. Yesterday I was at McDonalds eating my Kung Fu Panda Happy Meal, and I herd behind me a couple sit


“As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man.” Proverbs 27:19 Though this verse is simple it reveals a wonderful truth about all men. Our hearts are very much reflective of who we are. Here Solomon wisely says that if you examine the heart of a man you will see what he is really like. Here he is describing the inner soul, the inner sanctuary, the inner most part of him. That is where the real person is. Past the disguises that each person puts up, you dig deeper you will find what really makes this person. My nieces are back in town, so you know what that means, I am watching more and more Disney movies. But a couple of nights ago I was forced to watch a movie Mulan again, and again. About the 3rd time I was watching it, something caught my attention. The song that Mulan sings, “When will my reflection show who I am inside.” What caught me was that what she was seeing was not what she wanted to be. So when I read this verse here what I see sometimes the ref

I want to be somebody!

"Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for nobel purposes and some for common use?" Romans 9:21 God's sovereign choice to do what He desires for His creation. Though this is a tough concept to really think about because basically what Paul is saying here is that you could be a common folk. Not exactly what you want to hear. A common use?! Who wants to be that?! Here in America, you are constantly fed the idea that you could be SOMEBODY. But what Paul explains here is that well, you could be somebody in man's terms but you could be common use kind of person, and God chooses who is who. Not exactly the most soothing message to hear. You are a common person. That's great. But it really is great. If you think about Paul teaches in another book that we are part of a body of Christ a body has zillion of parts, some are visual and big and well known, others are small and in the background. But you need all of i

Against All Hope...

“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations just as it had been said to him, ‘so shall your offspring be’” Romans 4:18 Wow, what faith.This is what it means to live by faith. To firmly believe in the promises of God and know that it will come to pass. I can now say that God’s promises will be fulfilled. I can now embrace that God’s work shall be completed in me. I trust that God will finish what He started. If He says it, it will be. Against all hope God is working. But there is a part two, Abraham in hope believed. We must have faith in God. Be confident in God through the thick and thin. There are many things in my life where I fail to realize that God’s will come through. There are promises that are yet unfulfilled that I now know that I can trust in now. I am now confident that God can and will bring me out of the this season better and stronger. God is orchestrating, God is putting the pieces together, God is bring the plan fo

"If you.... Then God will..."

The word of the Lord came to Solomon: “As for this temple you are building, if you follow my decrees, carry out my regulations, and keep my commands and obey them, I will fulfill through you the promise I gave to David your father. And I will live among the Israelites and will not abandon my people Israel.” 1 Kings 6:11-13 God here lays it out to Solomon before he starts building the temple. If you do this... then I will fulfill. Before the building of the temple, before anything is completed, God lays down the real law, a simple command, be obedient. Be obedient to His command, be obedient to His following. Be obedient to His order and structure. That is what God asks Solomon here, that is what he is asking me to do today. I can’t stand when I am forced to do something that I don’t want to do. I remember I was working for this place and I they made us do something I just had a problem with. I hated it, I couldn’t stand it. I pouted about it, I tried to “reason” my with the

Commitment of My Heart

"But your hearts must be fully committed to the Lord our God, to live by his decrees and obey his commands, as at this time." 1 Kings 8:61 After a dedication to the temple Solomon here sees the importance of a committed heart to the Lord. But there is something about commitment. When the heart goes then then everything else follows. When your heart turns then your life will turn along with it. I guess what is important here to see is that once you move in one direction and your heart commits to it, then your emotion, intellect, and energy follows. I see why here Solomon ask that if God is to give us His 100% then we have to follow suit. The heart committed can see through tough times and focus on what is important. I liked this girl a lot I thought, but after constant rejection I gave up. My heart became uncommitted. I liked this other girl, and we dated for a month, but was rejected again and my heart towards her has changed. I see how why a committed heart is ne

Ask, but....

Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it s possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will but, as you will." Matthew 26:36 He had to ask. I mean why not? He knows the impending doom that has to be done, but instead of taking it, Jesus, like David prayed hard to change the mind of God. Why? It's not like we didn't know what was going to happen. We all know that when David heard that his son was going to die, he prayed and lamented, and did his son live? No. Here Jesus knows that he God assigned him to walk this very path, but here he pleads and to no avail. He has to walk the path. What sacrifice. Doing things even though you don't want to, that is awesome. Walking in the will of the Father is not easy. There will be times that walking with God will be like the best. But there will be times where we have to walk through the fire. We have to walk through the hard times. But at least I kno

If it dies, it dies...

“He answered, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought ‘Who knows? The Lord may be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? Will go to him, but he will not return to me.” 2 Samuel 12:22-23 David in all his grief cried out to God in desperation to save his child. But nonethess, the child was taken away, the words of Nathan was fulfilled and like that it was over. David, then got up, doing all he could do he moved on. Though it was custom and tradition to lament and fast after a death, David here recoginzed that it was final, it was done. Moving on after a death, is tough. But for some it’s not just a death, but maybe a shattered dream, a long lost wish unfulfilled, or just something that never materalizes. When it dies, it dies. But the lesson here isn’t just the reaction after death, but also what to do till it dies. David did all he could, he pleaded, fasted, did everything he co

Get behind me Satan!

“He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me Satan You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interest, but man’s!”” Matthew 16:23 So it is here again Peter, the one who does something great, but then stumbles again right after. But you see it though, a promise. Though Peter messed up in many ways, there was something that he did right. He was passionate for Jesus, sometimes too passionate. Some ways he let that get the better of him. But the great thing is that Jesus saw past that, Jesus saw past the immature, the unshaped, and undiscipline character. What he saw was the rock, who he gave the keys to. Funny thing about Jesus, he sees the potential that lay beneath the surface. He doesn’t see what it is, he sees what it can become. I like Peter the disciplie. I can relate to him in a lot of ways. Somedays I can do great with God. I am in total fellowship, walking with him, smiling, conversing, and working in total agreement with him. The ve

go, like go "now", or go like go later...

“Abigail lost no time. She took two hundered loaves of bread, two skins of wine, five dressed sheep, five seahs of roasted grain, a hundred cakes of rasins and two hundred cakes of pressed figs, and loaded them on donkeys. Then she told her servants, “Go on ahead ; I will follow you.” But she did not tell her husband Nabal.” 1 Sam. 25:18-19 Abigail was a smart one. When she heard the news she did not fret, she did not pray about it, she did not consult with others, she got up and did what she needed to do in order to get the job done. Sneaking out all those supplies behind her husbands back must not have been easy. But she did it to save everyone there. She gathered what she recognized the severity of the situation, made an action plan, and finished off the job I sit here reading this passage and I am thinking: Man, I would love a wife like that. Good decision maker, wise beyond her years. Well, besides that, what I am more amazed is that she was able to make right decision


“But Samson said to his father, ‘Get her for me. She’s the right one for me’ (His parents did not know that htis was from the Lord, who was seeking an occasion to confront the Philistines).” Judges 15:15 Samson, one of the most difficult people to understand here in the Bible. My question is why did God use him? He was easily tempted, easily angered, quick to jump camp. But still God uses Him. Why? Simply because he was chosen. Chosen to carry out God’s will. God used Samson in ways that brought forth the will of the Lord. God selected him to do the job. That is unbelievable. When you are chosen nothing can stop it. God uses you in big and mighty ways. You have a call on your life and God is going use you. I wonder how focused in I am in my call in life. I wonder how God is using me in His Kingdom. Somedays I feel as if I am not nearly as impacting as I should be. But I know that there is a call. We are all chosen to do something here that will impact the kingdom i


Scripture: “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God.” Psalms 42:11 Observation: As of recently I have been really distressed over a situation. And what do you know the Lord comes through again. So here David is down and out. It appears as if he it a wall, come to the edge of his rope and seems he just wants to give up. But here is where God saves him. He builds up enough strength and says, “Put your hope in God.” Application: So now I stand here distressed over a situation. I stand here one year later still fretting about the past. Still holding out. But what does the bible say to do? Give up? No way. God wants us to put our hope in Him. Sound easy but really it isn’t. It is one of the hardest things to do. Not that I am a worry wart, but I do worry. I also grow impatient when I feel that God needs to move faster. But here he states to put my hope in Him. To put my future

When God Moves I freak out!

His mother (Mary) said to him (Jesus), “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.” “Why were you searching for me? Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he was saying to them. Luke 2:48-50 Mary and Joseph must have been going crazy. Having one of their children missing for three days. That alone is scary. Not to mention that he was at the temple and responding the way he did. I would not understand that also. However, what is interesting here is that Mary and Joseph should have been expecting things like this. They should have been seeing this a mile away. Jesus was beginning to walk in his calling, beginning to take a chance and grow. Mary and Joseph should have been expecting this, they should have not been surprised. I often get like this, I often get like Mary and Joseph. I know where God is moving, I know what is about to come, but when it actually happens I scrambl

Eternal Keen Sense...

Scripture: “I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe, how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things” John 3:12 Observation: Jesus here is speaking to Nicodemus trying to explain the essence of being born again. Though not surprising, Nicodemus is not catching on. Looking at Nicodemus’ situation now and after reading this, I find it rather simple. Believe in Jesus, be born again, in spirit. Now this is after the fact of the Resurrection, and about 2000 years of people writings and a lot of theological discussion this topic. To Nicodemus who is hearing this for the first time, it is kind of blowing him away. Maybe his understanding was hindered. It seems as if he was stuck on something that did not allow him to fully grasp what Jesus was explaining. Application: After reading this I wondered how much of Nicodemus is suck in me. I wonder how many times God was showing me some sort of Heavenly truth or a moment where He is working but because