Tag Archives: faith journey

Asking for MORE

Last year, I asked God to test my faith. Not to give me what I want but to see more of Him. I get to know God more each day when I read the Bible but I wanted more. I wanted to know and experience God more in my own walk with Him. And so, I prayed for Him to take me to a more deep faith.

That’s 5 “more” there…

Just like when Elisha asked Elijah a double portion of his spirit, I asked God for more of Him.

Just rewinding a bit in 2012…

God gave me this burden to consider going for a full time ministry work. It is a privileged joy to be able to serve God fulltime.  However, I also wanted to fulfill my own dreams for myself and for my family. I can’t see my dream getting realized if I’ll go fulltime.

In a retreat that year, we were asked to write something that we want to surrender to the Lord. Right there, God asked me to surrender my plans and dreams to Him, to just totally let go. It broke my heart. As I wrote and committed it to the Lord, I was in tears. I felt like a portion of me was taken away.

After that, I just told God, I have done my part, now do Yours.

Forwarding to 2013…

There were no doors opened for a full time ministry work. God even gave me a better opportunity for growth in my IT career. It was a dream role I never thought I could have. I thought maybe God wanted me to stay after all. I got so energized with my work that somehow I forgot that desire of going full time for a ministry.

Then latter part of the year, a door for a ministry job opened. Work in my company became stressful and “spiritually” exhausting. I applied for the ministry opportunity. I considered resigning.

Not certain if I’ll be accepted for the position, I took a big leap of faith and submitted my resignation. And on my last day at work, I received the news for my ministry application that I was not accepted.

That’s what happened when you asked God to test your faith. Things don’t go your way. But it allowed me to experience God in a very, very, very personal way. Indeed, He wanted me to grow deeper in my faith.

I asked God why He wanted me to resign when He knew that I will not be accepted for that ministry. The response I got from Him – your character, your heart, more important than where you will serve me. The condition of my heart was not pleasing to Him anymore. Disgusting enough that God, full of grace and love had to remove me from something I might not be able to handle.

As I started 2014, I have never been more uncertain with my life. But that’s when deeper faith happens. All I know is that I have a SOVEREIGN GOD who cares for my heart more than what I can bring to Him.

Remember that dream I surrendered in 2012? Years before that, I wanted to apply for a permanent residency in Canada. However, I did not make it to the 2 years of full work experience. I got short of 3 months. I told God that if He really wanted me to apply, He will find another way. Start of 2013, the qualification changed. From 2 years, they only required 1 year. I was qualified. Then, hesitation came. I told God I surrendered this dream to Him already. I’m choosing to go full time.

But God is just amazing. He used someone to push me to apply. Did you ever have that peace that transcends all understanding? I had this sudden peace in me, confirming that I’m doing the right thing. Amazingly, everything went so smooth with my application. And with all the uncertainties I had at the start of the year, I received an email last February. My application for Canada got approved.

I gave God a jaw-dropping expression (literally). A face in awe of SOMEONE I can never fathom and describe but very real, very personal.

I’m excited how this year will turn out to be. 2013 has been a very interesting, growing, exciting year for me. This year, I’m just letting God continue to mold me, surprise me, amaze me, change me. After all, that’s just the way HE is – An Extravagant, Loving Father.

Last year, my theme verse was Hebrews 11:1 as God took me to a deeper faith.  Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”

I started this year – no job, plans surrendered, and full of uncertainties. I was only holding on to the ONE certainty in my life, my Lord and Savior Jesus.

This is my theme verse for 2014 – Philippians 3:7-8: “But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. “

Please pray for me as I seek God to give me a fresh vision before I leave for Canada. More than a fulfilled dream, this journey has always been about Him. I just want to make sure that when I move, I have a clear vision to remind me of why I went there in the first place.

Thank you to everyone who prayed with me on this journey. (Philippians 1:3 – “I thank my God every time I remember you.”)

In this life, it only takes a faith as small as a mustard seed to believe that God loves you so much and He cares about you that He wants to be involved in all aspects of your life. God will not force you. You have to decide if you want to believe. (And, I hope you do.)

To the only amazing God be all the glory!

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It’s Not Complicated

 

In my Bible reading, I’m now in the chapters of the Book of Exodus when God gave instruction to Moses in building the tabernacle, altar, etc. You know all the details and measurements. Every time I read these chapters, I’m always reminded of how God cares even to the smallest details. He was very specific of the color, size and length and materials to be used. The small details mattered to Him. Another thing I’m also reminded of, God is not complicated. When He gave the instruction to Moses, it was direct and complete, no guessing games or whatsoever.

As I reflect of who God is also in my life, He is also the same. He cares for the smallest details in my life. I remembered when I was trying to catch the last bus trip and I was still in the train. With my estimate, I know I will miss the bus but I asked for a little miracle from God. I made it to the last trip. I realized God cared for my transportation going home. There have been a lot of instances in my life that I never thought would matter to God, but every time I whisper a prayer, He would give me those little miracles which made me love God more. Indeed, He is also into the small details of our life.

If there’s such thing as “It’s Complicated” status in Facebook, with God, nothing is complicated. How He gave instruction to Moses, everything was laid out. Moses did not need to figure out what God was trying to say to Him. God gave all the details for Moses to execute. In my journey with God, He has shown the same. His yes is a clear yes and no a clear no. We sometimes think that God’s plan for us is something that we need to figure out or it’s a mystery. As I learn to totally trust Him, I realized that there is nothing to figure out. All we really need to do is to trust and obey. God gives answers in the proper time. And when He answers, it is always clear.

Last week, I became impatient with God. He asked me to resign last year and I thought that He would let me work full time in my church. The first position I applied, I was not selected. Another position was offered to me, I got excited and I thought this was what God really planned for me. Then, I was told last week that the start date was uncertain due to change of priorities.  I felt sad and cried. I was being a brat with God asking what He really wanted me to do. God was giving me a clear “No”. Twice. Very clear, right? And so, I conceded.

But God does not give us a “No” answer for no reason at all. Last Saturday, I received the email that I have been waiting for a long time. It was for my PR application in Canada, the immigration is requesting for my passport so that they could give me my visa. This was something I prayed to God and deeply asked Him not to give me a “No”.  And indeed, He did not! My application got approved! 🙂 And now, everything is making sense!

His No to me is a Yes to what is best for me and for His work for the church. God is not complicated. We are the ones making it complicated because of our impatience and lack of faith.

“God is not a God of disorder but of peace.” 1 Corinthians 14:33

The Great Unknown

The Great Unknown 

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When you think you got it all figured out, you’re wrong.

All you can do is to continue figuring it out until you reach that point that you can’t even remember what you were trying to figure out.

Making sense?

Not really, right?

Exactly.

The moment you keep figuring things out, you will realize that they just don’t make sense at all.

Well, from your perspective.

There is a vision but the path towards that vision is just blurry.

But then, what can you really do?

Stop looking? Stop pondering? Stop figuring it out?

Unfortunately, that’s the only thing you can do when you don’t really know what you need to do.

You really need to stop.

Instead, keep praying. Keep trusting.

No matter what, never lose faith.

It will somehow break your heart but HE will never fail you.

You will shed some tears but HE will restore your joy.

It will test your patience but HE will sustain you no matter how long the waiting will be.

You just have to hold on to the promise that HE has the best ahead of you.

Just enjoy the journey of resting in HIM. Be still.

For what is the great unknown to you is the greatest known plan to HIM.

Someday, you’ll see.

And, you’ll be in awe.

God Is, Even When We Are Not

My parents taught us about God, going to church every Sunday, praying and other church stuff. I grew up with a knowledge of God. Until 10 years ago, I realized that wasn’t enough. 

As I read God’s Word, I realized that God is not just a “someone” that we have to learn in our Religion subject.  I realized that God is not just present when I go to a church building. I realized that doing church activities is not just what God really wants from me.

God, more than anyone else, is the most important. How important our family is to us, God is more. How important our friends are to us, God is more. God who created the universe that we can’t even imagine, who designed us in our mother’s womb that we can’t even fathom. This God, who after all, what He really wants is just for us to love Him first before anyone or anything. This God, who is Almighty and Powerful, after all, what He really wants is just for us to know and honor Him. This God, who after all, what He really desires is we go back to Him.

In 1993, my father lost his job in Cebu as the company he was working at that time shut down. I was very young back then, I really didn’t understand what was going on. I just knew then that we would move to Bacolod City as my father found a job in Negros Occidental. God provided for my family – a job, a home, a school. God was faithful even when sometimes we failed to honor Him.

In 1997, we got robbed inside our house. A lot of our relatives from abroad came home because of my grandfather’s funeral. My siblings and I all slept in the living room and it was a good thing no one woke up during that time. God protected us from those men. God was faithful even when we forgot Him at times.

In 2001, the portion of my grandparent’s house where we stayed got burned. The whole second floor were our room and my parent’s room where were turned into ashes. It was a nightmare as I saw the fire rapidly eating the whole floor. But, I was grateful that none of us got hurt. I was glad that my brother who was in my parent’s room sensed the fire and was able to get out. God kept us all safe. God was faithful even when we fail to make time for Him.

In 2006, this was a very painful year for us as a family. My mother was going in and out of the hospital for a month because of family issues that affected her health. Everyone in the family was coping on how to handle such painful family matter. And the most unexpected happened, my sister passed away because of hemorrhagic dengue fever.  During this time, it was only God who could truly see and understand the depth of our pain. God was our comforter. God was faithful even when we neglected Him sometimes.

In 2014, just this month, my father got into an accident which caused him to have his left hipbone dislocated. I was telling God how funny it could be, that if He allowed this to happen why not before I resigned from my work. My HMO could have covered the hospital bills of my father. But, I am grateful that my father is okay and the operations performed to him was just to align his hipbone and a minor surgery for his fractured ankle. This was an unexpected expense for us but God provided for our needs. And I know that He is at work at my father’s life that He allowed this. I’m grateful for this trial in Papa’s life. God is faithful even when we lack faith in Him and doubt Him at times.

These were not just the trials that God allowed to happen in my life, in our lives as a family. There were a lot. But these I highlighted are the ones I can clearly look back and be amazed of  how GOOD God really is. It brings me to tears every time I remember His faithfulness and goodness to our family despite the times that we continue to disobey Him and even ignore Him. He remained faithful and He got us through all of those.

You see, more than our good works, good performance, good looks – God wants a relationship with us through Jesus. Like a father to a child, that’s what He wants from us. Even if we forget Him, He has always been there, waiting for His children to come back, to the point of giving up His Only Son, Jesus. That’s how much God loves us.

Life is difficult.

Life is more difficult without Jesus whom through Him we can go back to God.

“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” – Romans 8:32

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future,nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 8:37-39

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One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”  

“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than  these.” – Mark 12:28-31

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Take it Slow

Since I started working, I felt I’ve become an expert of multitasking. I’m always in a hurry to complete two to three tasks at the same time. I felt like I’m always running out of time.

And as I did this, it somehow influenced even my day to day non-work tasks. I noticed that when I walk with people, I always go ahead of them. When I do my chores at home, I start thinking what to do next when I’m still finishing something. And I noticed, when I do things, I’m always in a fast-paced like I’m being timed.

And now that I’m currently out of work, I still feel like I don’t have enough time to do so many things when I have all the time right now. I want to complete things immediately. I want to accomplish a lot within a week. I want rapid progress in my goals.

No wonder God has been teaching me big time on waiting. I want everything to happen in an instant while God is taking His time in slowing things for me. What can I do?

I made a sort of commitment to myself that while I’m waiting on God for His direction for me, I will learn to slow down on everything. I will do chores in a normal pace, thus, avoiding dropping or breaking things. I will plan out tasks weekly and not kill myself to do all in one day. I will take time to rest, walk slowly, observe things. I read this somewhere, “Take a pause and smell the waffle.”  

I’m excited on how God will change me to be more patient and more trusting.

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Certain Uncertainties

August 8, 2005 will always be an unforgettable date. That’s when God opened the doors of the corporate world for me being a fresh graduate. The job hunting days were filled with buckets of tears and sweat that I never wanted to go through again.

December 31, 2013 is another date to remember. That’s when God closed that door, for how long? I’m not really sure.

I get different responses and reactions from people who learned that I was leaving my work of more than 8 years. They saw how I’ve greatly experienced different forms of blessings through my work that it seems to be a waste to just leave like that.

But, I totally understand these kind of responses. To be able to find a new job is never easier than leaving the current one.

However, I had to leave. Why? Because God said so…

A full time ministry work opened three months ago which I felt was an answered prayer of my desire of doing full time work for the church. With much prayer, I applied. A month after, I decided to submit my resignation even without the certainty that I’ll get the full time work. God gave me peace for my decision. The timing of events for my application was God’s way of affirming me that I did the right thing.

As I went through the last few steps of my application, I was having the confidence that I’m already in.  I just had to wait on the next final steps.

December 27, Friday was my last day in the company since the rest of the days of the month were holidays. As I was returning all company assets, I felt God telling me “I just want you out from there.”  I took it as it is, didn’t bother to even ask what He meant by it.

That Friday night, I checked my personal emails and got an update for my ministry application. They did not select me for the position.

My first reaction – I laughed. I felt like I got “punked” or something. Seriously, the news had to break on my last day?!

I realized God made things happen to push me to a decision that I will not waver. I thought I got everything figured out after I resign. However, God has a very different plan in mind. He just used that situation to get me out of there. Who am I to complain and question? God brought me to that world in the first place. He can always take me out from that world however and whenever He wanted to.

I felt sad with the result of my application. But it made me more excited of God’s amazing plan for my life. Right now, the only thing I’m certain about is the uncertainties in my life. I just have to live each day by faith – much deeper faith.

As I went through this journey, I got reminded that my life is indeed not about me. My life has always been about God and what He can do through me. He is the one who enabled me to go through this journey and He will be the one who will get the glory for how this journey will turn out to be.

God never wanted us to live by what our eyes can only see or our mind can only comprehend. He always wanted us to live by faith on Him.

 “For we live by faith, not by sight.” 2 Cor 5:7 

 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”  He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree,‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.”  Luke 17:5-6

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Passing by…

 

It’s been a while since I’ve put in some of my faith journeys. A lot has just happened for this month. My brother just left for UK today! Yey!! I’m excited for Christian. Not just with the new place and all, but most of all on how God will use him there and on how much he will grow and mature; just excited seeing God’s hand in the life of my brother. 🙂 I’m so thankful to God for His provision for my brother. 🙂

How have I been lately? I’ve been so focused with work and my IELTS review, though, with some leisure in the side. But my mind has really been work and IELTS. My exams are getting close and I’m just nervous!! As always, it’s another step of faith. I would need a lot of prayers especially during that day. I know God is already there before me. He will guide me and help me.

I’m a bit sleepy now. I have so much to write it’s just that the time isn’t very nice to write. Will come back again next time 🙂 All glory to God! 🙂

Written Mar 01 2013