Thursday, December 14, 2017

Ten Things I Learned this 2017


1. Lower your expectation, increase your appreciation.
The ultimate key to happiness and gratitude.

2. Don't be too hard on yourself.
Stop comparing yourself with others. Learn to embrace your imperfections because no one else will. Even if you fail, do not be disheartened. Failures are opportunities to learn and become better.

3. No matter what you do or say, there are people who will not agree on you.
Because there are people who want to hear what they want to hear. Regardless if you are correct and have the best intentions at heart. Keep your focus. Be objective.   
4. The best place to be is where God wants you to be.
The safest place to be is always in the will of God. Regardless how hard it will be or how unpopular this decision may be, you can be sure He is with you. That is more than enough.

5. One day you'll look back and realise you worried too much about things that don't really matter.
Worrying is such a waste of time. Period.

6. When God blesses you financially spend less, give more. 
Blessing doesn't mean you have to increase your lifestyle, it is an opportunity to give back and support His kingdom more.

7. Choose your company.
You become the people you surround yourself with. It's okay to be selective and choosy at this point.

8. Our disappointments are God's appointments
Frustrated? Disappointed? Demotivated? Pour out your hearts to God. Soak in His presence. Find peace that transcends man's understanding from God alone.

9. The best things in life are not things.
This youtube video message from Michael Ramsden explains this best.

10. Less is more.
Less stuff. More space.
Less noise. More solitude.
Less things. More heart.
Less talk. More action.
Less fear. More love.
Less me. More Jesus. ( added this up myself as a reminder )

Sunday, December 3, 2017

CCF: So That You May Know Who He Is

John 21:1-14
Pastor Richard

Image courtesy of JW.org
After the death of Jesus Christ, John chapter 21 accounts that Peter together with the other disciples decided to go back to fishing. Fishing during this time is not a recreation, it is their livelihood. It is something they knew they are skilled and familiar with to provide for their families . After the death of Jesus Christ, His disciples were scattered and perplexed. Without a rabbi, they decided to go back to fishing which is the line of work they are good at. But the Lord’s plan for them is greater than theirs.


And He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” –Matthew 4:19

Similarly for us, when life does not make sense anymore or when we are facing difficult situation, oftentimes we have fallback careers, field which we know we can go back anytime and succeed on it. But you need to be sensitive on what God really wants you to accomplish. Because no matter how great you are in your profession, if that is not what God plan for you, it will not serve you neither Him.

It is essential to seek first His kingdom. Our employments are just secondary, our primary calling is to honor God.

There is nothing wrong with fishing but it is not God’s calling for the disciples.

And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not fear, from now on you will be catching men.” –Luke 5:10

How do we measure success? Where does success come from? Success does not happen because of our skills and knowledge, it is a blessing from God. Often God speaks loudly to us through loss, pain and failure. The question is, are we listening? When going through difficulties, God is telling us to trust Him.

Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? –Matthew 6:26

Principles

1. Be diligent at work

In all labor there is profit, But mere talk leads only to poverty. –Proverbs 14:23

2. Work hard but keep your priorities

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. –Matthew 6:33
Life is not just about our work and how successful we are. These should not become our ultimate goals in life. As Christians, our greatest purpose should be to seek God’s kingdom.

What are you worrying too much? Where are you putting all your energies? Keep in mind that we may be of this world but we don’t belong to this world.

Conclusion

What is your fishing(fallback) that you are clinging into?
Are you always seeking the kingdom of God? Are you doing the right things God wants you to do for the right reason?

The best investment is always the ones with eternal returns. Our life is a journey of faith with God here on earth. Fleeting. Enjoy the journey, but always keep your eyes on the MAJOR things. Pursue God’s kingdom for His glory.

Transcribed by:

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Friday, December 1, 2017

Movie: Justice League

Although this is a superhero-fantasy-action movie, it doesn't hurt to incorporate those funny exchange of dialogues between the characters. This made the movie light to digest and refreshing to watch other than bloody fight scenes, explosions and stunts.
Barry Allen: What are your superpowers again? 
Bruce Wayne: I'm rich. 
***
Clark Kent: How did you get the house from the bank? 
Bruce Wayne: I bought the bank. All of it.
***
Bruce Wayne: [from trailer] I'm putting together a team of people with special abilities. See, I believe enemies are coming...
Barry Allen: Stop right there. I'm in.
Bruce Wayne: You are? Just like that?
Barry Allen: Yeah, I... I need... friends.
Bruce Wayne: Agreed.
Barry Allen: [holds up batarang] Can I keep this?
***
Commissioner Gordon: How many of you are there?
Bruce Wayne: Not enough.
Commissioner Gordon: Do you really think that…
[he turns around to see only Barry standing behind him, the others have disappeared]
Barry Allen: Oh, wow, they just, they really just vanished. Huh? Oh. That’s rude.
That moment when you are not even sure why you do, what you do or what you are already doing for the longest time in your life. When insecurities devours you, because you know you are not great enough. The truth is you don't have to be great all the time. You can't save everyone anyways. So choose one battle, give your whole heart fighting for it and who knows this might lead you a greater purpose.
The Flash: It's really cool you guys seem ready to do battle and stuff, but I've never done battle. I've just pushed some people and run away! 
Batman: Save one. 
The Flash: What? 
Batman: Save one person. 
The Flash: And then? 
Batman: Then you'll know.
And of course superhero movies will not be complete without those famous-quotable quotes unleashing the heroic spirit within each one. Re-kindling your sense of responsibility, empathy for others, quest for justice and enlarging your perspective.
Lois Lane: There are heroes among us. Not to make us feel smaller, but to remind us of what makes us great.  
***
Superman: Well I believe in truth... but I'm also a big fan of justice. 
Image courtesy of We Live Entertainment
Black Clad Alpha: I don't believe it. What are you? 
Wonder Woman: A believer.
To believe or not to believe is a decision you and I have to make one day. Not to believe does not necessarily mean not making a decision, that is the choice you made. A believer is someone who stands up on something he/she believes to be true. Placing your faith on that one thing that you trust is fundamental. Your beliefs in life molds you - how you think, how you behave, how you respond and how you process the circumstances you are in.

I too am a believer, a believer of just and one true God through Christ Jesus who died on the cross for my sins two thousand years ago. That He will return again one day to judge all humanity and whoever believes in Him shall have eternal life with Him in heaven.

What do you believe in?

Sunday, November 5, 2017

One Year Older, Wiser?

To be honest there are moments when I start dreading the months of November. Didn't imagine that I'd come to a point feeling BER months could be festive and tragic at the same time. Festive for CHRISTmas season but tragic for adding another year to my age. Pardon me for sounding pessimistic in my post, but this is reality, it's not everyday that you feel like you're on top of everything.

But in my momentarily journey of drifting away feeling lost, there will always be golden flashes of connection with God, where He would gently tap you at the back and shift your perspective 180 degrees from your self-centered desires to God's perfect plans. Praise God for His tender reminders.
Jeremiah 29:11 “ For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
While there are times I regret growing older, shouldn't I feel gratified for another year of life given to me. Precious time that is often denied to few, unfortunately. What reason do I have to be apathetic at all. So thank you November for arriving deliberately this year. Like blissful seasons of spring, let the flowers bloom to its fascinating colours. As the brilliant greenery of grass and trees proclaim life and new beginnings.
"Gratitude not expressed is like wrapping a present and not giving it." --William Arthur Ward
As I celebrate my birthday this year, a massive shout out to my dearest family and beautiful friends who spare time to make me feel loved on my birthday. Guys your gestures made me look more popular than I am actually are. #kidding

Out of 25 #gratitude tagged blog posts, let me to express my appreciation through some of my favourite posts:

2016: 50 Reasons to be Thankful
Latest inclusion to my annual regimen of keeping a record of at least fifty reasons to be grateful for the past year, no matter how big or small. Every year I am writing this post I thought I have exhausted the list, what else should I write for next year, but every year the Lord never fails to amaze me of greater things I should be thankful for. I couldn't be more excited for this years entry :)

Ten Things I am Thankful for my Birthday
Because birthdays are meant to be celebrated. In spite of the gloomy fact that it makes you  a year older than usual, birthdays are privilege that is withhold to some people, so celebrate your life. Birthdays is relative to new years. It gives us second chances, it comes with hope and opportunity to reflect and recognise yourself better.

God's Grace Pursues Us!
My current state of mind and soul now, by God's grace is GRATITUDE. It's important to regularly remind yourself of the times how God leads you and put everything in place beyond your capacity and control. Not to dwell on it too much but to have enough boost of faith that He is the same God who can again make miracles in your current circumstance.

One year older, wiser? Hopefully yes but on top of this, one thing I intend to pursue, become more grateful.


Friday, November 3, 2017

Music: Stone by Cyrus

Cyrus Villanueva, 21 year old Filipino-Australian singer, musician and artist from Wollongong, New South Wales has no doubt rose into a famous pop rockstar.

On the video is Cyrus' winning song and first single entitled "Stone" after being crowned the winner in the seventh season of X Factor Australia back in 2015 when he was still nineteen. His X Factor journey includes performing a cover of Earned It, Dancing On My Own, Wicked Game, Hold Back the River, Rumour Has It, Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door, Jealous, Don’t, Love Me Like You Do and In the Air Tonight. His self title album "Cyrus" released by Sony Music Australia in December 2015 with carrier single "Stone" has captivated the hearts of Ozzys and has been dominating the airwaves of Philippine top charts. 

Stone

I should've known from your voice alone
That you were gonna mess me up
Too much pleasure like a sugar rush
I should've guessed from your cherry lips
That you were gonna leave your mark
Never had a kiss that could hit so hard

And I feel you driftin' over me
Yeah, you got this hold on me
Rooo-o-oo-ooow
And you, yeah you make it hard to breathe
But it just don't bother me
But it just don't bother me

I'm a stone in your river
Rolling to wherever
I drown just a little
I drown just a little
I'm a stone in your river
Every night I'm with you
I drown just a little
Deep down in you

I should've known watching you dance alone
That I could never get enough
Of your body looking like that, love
I could've guessed from your silhouette
That we were gonna ride real fast
Oh, baby we can make it last

And I feel you driftin' over me
Yeah, you got this hold on me
Rooo-o-oo-ooow
And you, yeah you make it hard to breathe
But it just don't bother me
But it just don't bother me, bother me

I'm a stone in your river
Rolling to wherever
I drown just a little
I drown just a little
I'm a stone in your river
Every night I'm with ya
I drown just a little
Deep down in you
Aye-yeah-aye-aye, yeah-yeah
I drown just a little
Deep down in you
Ooh baby, ooh
I drown just a little
Deep down in you

I'm a stone in your river
Rolling to wherever
I drown just a little
I drown just a little
I'm a stone in your river
Every night I'm with ya
I drown just a little
Deep down in you

I'm a stone in your river
Rolling to wherever
I drown just a little
I drown just a little
I'm a stone in your river
Every night I'm with ya
I drown just a little
Deep down in you

I drown just a little
Deep down in you
I drown just a little
Deep down in you

Deep down in you
Deep down in you

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Music: This is My Now

What a comeback? After being rejected three times during the Bootcamp, Six Chair challenge and Judges' House elimination in "The X Factor UK" Alisah Bonaobra returns as a wildcard contestant. This 22 year old Filipina singer is definitely back stronger and more mature to defend her spot in the Girls category under judge Sharon Osbourne. Her cover of "This is My Now" performed during the first Live show is slamming the social media with the most number of views, more than 1.3 million hits just in three days.

Found more reason to watch this television reality talent search - "The X Factor UK 2017."
Soar high Alisah, hoping you all the best in this competition. You will always have our hundred percent support!

Credits to X Factor UK channel for sharing the video.


Original: Jordin Sparks

There was a time I packed my dreams away
Living in a shell, hiding from myself

There was a time when I was so afraid
I thought I’d reached the end
Baby that was then
But I am made of more than my yesterdays

[Chorus]
This is my now, and I am breathing in the moment
As I look around
I can’t believe the love I see
My fears behind me, gone are the shadows and doubts
That was then, this is my now.

Had to decide was I gonna play it safe
Or look somewhere deep inside
and try to turn the tide
Find the strength to take that step of faith

[Chorus]

[Bridge]
And I have the courage like never before, yeah
I’ve settled for less but ready for more
Ready for more

[Chorus x2]

This is my now

Sunday, October 29, 2017

CCF: Prayer Walk and Talk

This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him. -- 1 John 5:14-15
It was a humbling privilege to be part of CCF's Prayer Walk and Talk last Saturday at Singapore Botanic Garden. The weather alone is already an answered prayer, as few days before the event, the weather forecast for Saturday was scattered thunderstorms but on the actual day itself it shifted to mostly cloudy. Isn't God amazing? Like a modern day Jesus-calms-the-storm miracle. What an encouragement, not to mention the influx of almost 50 CCFers who allied as one body of Christ spending Saturday afternoon in seeking and spending time with God.




The event was commenced by Kuya Marco's message about the importance of prayer. Followed by the some rules and guidelines to follow through out the activity. We were divided to seven break out groups and organised to visit four prayer stations.

Station 1: Pray for the Church

  • Leadership
    • Sensitivity to God's leading
    • Personal spiritual growth
    • Raising of new leaders
  • DGroups
    • Growth in quantity and quality
    • For love and healthy fellowship
    • Faithfulness and availability of members
  • Pastors/Missionaries
    • Keith and Jeanette Shubert(EAST)
    • Caloy and Suzette Pena (US)
    • Jay and Faith Jackson (Bugkalot)
    • Joseph and Lorraines Tanchi (Bugkalot)
    • Alvin and Candy Lagamon (South Sudan)
    • Chye Foong Yong (OMF Philippines)
  • CCF Singapore
    • Seafarer ministry
    • Project Canaan-Our own church place
    • GLC 1 and 2
    • Christmas Party
Station 2: Pray for the Country
  • Philippines
    • President Rodrigo Duterte and the rest of government officials
    • Integrity, wisdom and protection of our leaders
    • Personal salvation of officials
    • Peace and order
    • Improvement of traffic situation
    • Marawi recovery
    • Testimony as a Christian nation
  • Singapore
    • PM Lee Hsien Loong
    • Integrity, wisdom and protection of our leaders
    • Personal salvation of officials
    • Spiritual prosperity of the nation
    • Favour and protection for foreign workers
Station 3: Pray for our Family and Friends
  • Who to pray for:
    • Family(immediate and extended)
    • Friends(current and previous acquaintances)
    • Housemates
    • Officemates
  • What to pray for:
    • Personal salvation and intimacy with God
    • Good health and safety
    • Blessings for their careers, finances and different pursuits
    • Good relationship with them (and restoration if needed)
    • Allow us to be blessings to them
Station 4: Pray for our Individual Concerns
  • To love God(intimacy)
  • To love others
  • To become more Christ-like
  • Personal discipline in spiritual growth
  • Career, professional and/or business growth
  • Healing for physical sickness, stress, mental and emotional wounds
  • Discipline with physical exercise, healthy eating and proper sleep
  • Holiness in body and mind; purity in thoughts, motives, intentions and actions
  • Opportunities to serve God
  • Opportunities to be a blessing to others
  • Other personal concerns
Our break out group - Me, Ate Ethel, Kuya Marc, Kimi and Josh

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. -- Philippians 4:6

In the midst of fast-paced, active and demanding city life we have in Singapore it is beneficial to be reminded that it is not in the intense, go-getting moment that we accomplish much but in the quiet, consistent moments of prayer and pouring of our hearts to the Lord who knows what is best for us and always, always have our best interest.

There is power in prayer. Even Jesus prayed.

Let's make prayer a daily appointment with God.