We had an enjoyable time at our annual college ministry Thanksgiving Dinner. Thank you to all who came and to all our volunteers that made it happen.
Thank you Joel for the great pictures! Check out more of his work at Kapono Photoworks.
Hey Grace family,
Please pray for us today. Grace Tokyo and our team will be having a gathering at Yoyogi Park today from 1pm-4pm (about 3 hours from now). Jireh, Daniel, Josh, and myself visited and prayer walked the park yesterday. Please partner along with us in prayer with some points below. Feel free to pray as you feel led by the Holy Spirit.
Please pray that the Holy Spirit will draw all the students and friends we have made along the way to come today.
Please pray that it will be a great bridge gathering for those we met to connect well with Grace Tokyo family.
Please pray that all those who will come will belong before they believe.
Please pray that the weather will be great today and that we will be able to secure our spot.
Love you all 🙂
Hey friends and family,
I am excited to share with you that I will speak my first Sunday morning message tomorrow (March 18). We will have a Next Generation service that will have our worship team consisting of high school and college students. We will also have a performance by 2 youth, Becca and Naomi, and will have my friend Josh do a spoken word poetry. Also, we will have a pancake fundraiser breakfast after both services to help raise money for our upcoming high school youth camp.
If you would like to come, you are more than welcome to join us this Sunday at either our 830am or 1030am services at Kahala Elementary School. Feel free to invite your unchurched friends and family to come and join us as well 🙂
Come out and support your local Hawaii artists tonight! $5 at the door 🙂
Hey everyone, im trying to bang out new updates, upcoming shows and pictures of my artwork. Please check back periodically. Its going to be an awesome year! God bless you all 🙂
“Self Portrait: BC”
“Prayer: Cebu 2006”
“Self Portrait: 2006”
“Self Portrait: Pruning”
“Self Portrait: Jars of Clay”
“Self Portrait: BC 2003”
“Homeless Series #1”
“Homeless Series #2”
“Homeless Series #3”
“Missions 06 Series #1”
“Missions 06 Series #2”
“Missions 06 Series #3”
“Comfort Series #1”
“Comfort Series #2”
“Joy In Seeking”
“Love Never Fails”
“Passion: Taking A Stand”
Come and join us for our new series called “Connecting the Dots.” Hope yall can make it 🙂
I hope you all have a blessed and lovely Christmas day as we celebrate our Savior’s birth. I hope this Christmas will be a very special one for you and your family. Thank you all who have seeded into raising up the next generation in Christ. I appreciate you all soOoo very much. Together we are making a difference. I love you all!
I hope you all enjoyed these great Christmas songs from Twentyfour64.
You are invited 🙂
By God’s grace, I was featured in Contrast Magazine. In my opinion, Contrast is the best local magazine showcasing Hawaii’s underground art/music culture. Quality photography and articles. So fresh! Pick-up a FREE copy at In4mation and Prototype!
Im looking forward to tomorrows show! Come out and support!
This friday, December 11, I have the privilege of being part of this art show to raise money for Kenny Brimers fight against cancer. The show will feature 30 custom designed skateboard decks from various artists (including me)!
Heres the main 411-
Deck the Halls
December 11, 2009
@ Manifest- 32 N. Hotel St.
See flyer for more info.
Come and support 😀
Come out and support.
Currently i have artwork work being displayed at two library locations. The first is at the Hawaii State Library in conjunction with the Boom Boom Brown event, showcasing filipino talent. Works will be taken down at the end of October.
Secondly, I have a painting displayed at Makiki Libary in conjunction with the event Urban Makiki.
I ya’ll can check it out when ya’ll have the time.
“Let me explain the problem science has with religion.’ The atheist
professor of philosophy pauses before his class and then asks one of
his new students to stand.
‘You’re a Christian, aren’t you, son?’
‘Yes sir,’ the student says.
‘So you believe in God?’
‘Is God good?’
‘Sure! God’s good.’
‘Is God all-powerful? Can God do anything?’
‘Are you good or evil?’
‘The Bible says I’m evil.’
The professor grins knowingly. ‘Aha! The Bible!’ He considers for a
moment. ‘Here’s one for you. Let’s say there’s a sick person over here
and you can cure him. You can do it. Would you help him? Would you
‘Yes sir, I would.’
‘So you’re good…!’
‘I wouldn’t say that.’
‘But why not say that? You’d help a sick and maimed person if you
could. Most of us would if we could. But God doesn’t.’
The student does not answer, so the professor continues. ‘He doesn’t,
does he? My brother was a Christian who died of cancer, even though he
prayed to Jesus to heal him. How is this Jesus good? Hmmm? Can you
answer that one?’
The student remains silent.
‘No, you can’t, can you?’ the professor says. He takes a sip of water
from a glass on his desk to give the student time to relax.
‘Let’s start again, young fella. Is God good?’
‘Er…yes,’ the student says.
‘Is Satan good?’
The student doesn’t hesitate on this one. ‘No.’
‘Then where does Satan come from?’
The student falters. ‘From God’
‘That’s right. God made Satan, didn’t he? Tell me, son. Is there evil
in this world?’
‘Evil’s everywhere, isn’t it? And God did make everything correct?’
‘So who created evil?’ The professor continued, ‘If God created
everything, then God created evil, since evil exists, and according to
the principle that our works define who we are, then God is evil.’
Again, the student has no answer. ‘Is there sickness? Immorality?
Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things, do they exist in this
The student squirms on his feet. ‘Yes.’
‘So who created them?’
The student does not answer again, so the professor repeats his
question.. ‘Who created them?’ There is still no answer. Suddenly the
lecturer breaks away to pace in front of the classroom. The class is
mesmerized. ‘Tell me,’ he continues onto another student.
‘Do you believe in Jesus Christ, son?
The student’s voice betrays him and cracks. ‘Yes, professor, I do.’
The old man stops pacing. ‘Science says you have five senses you use
to identify and observe the world around you. Have you ever seen
‘No sir. I’ve never seen Him.’
‘Then tell us if you’ve ever heard your Jesus?’
‘No, sir, I have not.’
‘Have you ever felt your Jesus, tasted your Jesus or smelled your
Jesus? Have you ever had any sensory perception of Jesus Christ, or
God for that matter?’
‘No, sir, I’m afraid I haven’t.’
‘Yet you still believe in him?’
‘According to the rules of empirical, testable, demonstrable protocol,
science says your God doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son?’
‘Nothing,’ the student replies. ‘I only have my faith.’
‘Yes, faith,’ the professor repeats. ‘And that is the problem science
has with God. There is no evidence, only faith.’
The student stands quietly for a moment, before asking a question of
His own. ‘Professor, is there such thing as heat?’
‘And is there such a thing as cold?’
‘Yes, son, there’s cold too.’
‘No sir, there isn’t.’
The professor turns to face the student, obviously interested.
The room suddenly becomes very quiet. The student begins to explain.
‘You can have lots of heat, even more heat, super-heat, mega-heat,
unlimited heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat, but we don’t
have anything called ‘cold’. We can hit up to 458 degrees below zero,
which is no heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no
such thing as cold; otherwise we would be able to go colder than the
lowest -458 degrees.’
‘Everybody or object is susceptible to study when it has or transmits
energy, and heat is what makes a body or matter have or transmit
energy. Absolute zero (-458 F) is the total absence of heat. You see,
sir, cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We
cannot measure cold. Heat we can measure in thermal units because heat
is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of
Silence across the room. A pen drops somewhere in the classroom,
sounding like a hammer.
‘What about darkness, professor. Is there such a thing as darkness?’
‘Yes,’ the professor replies without hesitation. ‘What is night if it
‘You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is not something; it is the absence
of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light,
flashing light, but if you have no light constantly you have nothing
and it’s called darkness, isn’t it? That’s the meaning we use to
define the word.’
‘In reality, darkness isn’t. If it were, you would be able to make
darkness darker, wouldn’t you?’
The professor begins to smile at the student in front of him. This
will be a good semester. ‘So what point are you making, young man?
‘Yes, professor. My point is, your philosophical premise is flawed to
start with, and so your conclusion must also be flawed.’
The professor’s face cannot hide his surprise this time. ‘Flawed? Can
you explain how?’
‘You are working on the premise of duality,’ the student explains..
‘You argue that there is life and then there’s death; a good God and a
bad God. You are viewing the concept of God as something finite,
something we can measure. Sir, science can’t even explain a thought.’
‘It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen, much less
fully understood either one. To view death as the opposite of life is
to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive
thing. Death is not the opposite of life, just the absence of it.
‘Now tell me, professor. Do you teach your students that they evolved
from a monkey?’
‘If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, young man,
yes, of course I do.’
‘Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?’
The professor begins to shake his head, still smiling, as he realizes
where the argument is going. A very good semester, indeed.
‘Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and
cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor, are you
not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you now not a scientist, but a
The class is in uproar. The student remains silent until the commotion
‘To continue the point you were making earlier to the other student,
let me give you an example of what I mean.’
The student looks around the room. ‘Is there anyone in the class who
has ever seen the professor’s brain?’ The class breaks out into
‘Is there anyone here who has ever heard the professor’s brain, felt
the professor’s brain, touched or smelled the professor’s brain? No
one appears to have done so. So, according to the established rules of
empirical, stable, demonstrable protocol, science says that you have
no brain, with all due respect, sir.’
‘So if science says you have no brain, how can we trust your lectures,
Now the room is silent. The professor just stares at the student, his
Finally, after what seems an eternity, the old man answers. ‘I guess
you’ll have to take them on faith.’
‘Now, you accept that there is faith, and, in fact, faith exists with
life,’ the student continues. ‘Now, sir, is there such a thing as
Now uncertain, the professor responds, ‘Of course, there is. We see
it every day It is in the daily example of man’s inhumanity to man. It
is in the multitude of crime and violence everywhere in the world.
These manifestations are nothing else but evil.’
To this the student replied, ‘Evil does not exist sir, or at least it
does not exist unto itself. Evil is simply the absence of God. It is
just like darkness and cold, a word that man has created to describe
the absence of God. God did not create evil. Evil is the result of
what happens when man does not have God’s love present in his heart.
It’s like the cold that comes when there is no heat or the darkness
that comes when there is no light.’
The professor sat down.
The student was Albert Einstein. Albert Einstein did write a book
titled God vs. Science in 1921…
“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7
I found this intriguing post through my friend Eukarezt’s FB page.
I hope this blesses you in some way.
Im excited to be part of this event. Here is a detailed write up of the show… I hope yall can make it 😀
In observance of October as Filipino American history month, Boom Boom Brown! A Celebration of Filipino American Youth Culture, featuring Hawai’i’s young and talented Filipino American visual artists, poets, music ensemble and dancers, will be held on Saturday, October 17, 2009. The public is invited to this free event, which begins at 12:00 p.m. at the Hawai’i State Public Library.
“In the Filipino community, people are concerned that many young Filipinos are lost and disconnected from our roots. That’s not true. We do take pride in our Filipino American culture, heritage and identity. We know about our history,” said April Bautista, event co-chair. She added, “The youth and young adults featured at the event not only express their pride through the creative arts, but they do it in various genres.”
Boom Boom Brown! showcases the works of visual artists Christopher Aradanas, Calvin Bagaoisan, Shaun Castro and Elsie Simpliciano; poets Jessica Ladera, Melanie Medalle and Faith Pascua; and musicians and dancers from Mahalohalo Kolintang Ensemble and Tekniqlingz Dance Crew. This diverse group of participants represents the depth and scope of talent found in Hawai’i’s Filipino American youth.
The year 2009 is the second year that the State of Hawai’i is officially celebrating Filipino American History Month. The Hawai’i State Legislature passed legislation in 2008 designating the month of October as Filipino American History Month to annually commemorate the contributions of Filipino Americans to Hawai’i and the United States.
Boom Boom Brown! is sponsored by the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) Hawai’i, the Filipino American Historical Society of Hawai’i (FAHSOH), and Friends of the Library. NaFFAA Hawai’i is a non-profit, advocacy organization committed to empowering the Filipino American community by working with college students through its workshops, conferences and other events. FAHSOH is a non-profit organization whose mission is to foster an appreciation for the heritage and experiences of Filipino Americans in Hawai’i.
Christopher received a bachelor’s of fine arts from the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa with an emphasis in photography. Christopher’s works were featured in the Hawai’i Craftsmen’s Fiber Hawai’i 2006 Juried Exhibition at The ARTS at Marks Garage and at the Contemporary Filipino American Artists of Hawai’i Exhibition at the Contemporary Museum in the First Hawaiian Bank Downtown. Christopher enjoys working with youth and is currently a paraprofessional educator.
Calvin is currently a student at the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa majoring in fine arts and minoring in the Ilocano language. He is part of the Timpuyog Student Organization at the university and was its former vice president. Calvin won the 2008 Honolulu Magazine Photo Contest and recently performed at the Filipino Fiesta in May. Calvin continues to volunteer in the Filipino American community to help perpetuate the culture, heritage and history.
Since 2003, Shaun has had his works in numerous exhibitions around Hawai’i and California, including local venues such as Prototype in Pearlridge, Studio 1 and the Ground Up art shows at the Chinatown Courtyard. He received his bachelor’s in fine arts from the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa. Aside from being a painter, Shaun is also a youth minister and has done mission work in the Visayas region of the Philippines. His Christian faith and love for hip hop culture are dominant influences in his work.
Elsie took art classes from the University of California-Berkeley and her works have been featured at Soul Signature Tattoos, the 2002 National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) Global Conference in San Francisco and in Maganda magazine. Elsie is the co-vice chair of NaFFAA Hawai’i. She honors her heritage by working within the Filipino American community and helping Filipino youth develop an awareness about the culture and history. Originally from San Francisco, Elsie is a literacy resource teacher with Kamehameha Schools.
Jessica was trained under poet Travis T. of Youth Speaks Hawai’i and was a member of Farrington High School’s first slam poetry team. She has competed at the Youth Speaks Hawai’i InterSlams in which the Farrington Slam Team won second place in fall 2008 and first place in spring 2009. Jessica is currently a freshman at Leeward Community College pursuing an associate’s degree in teaching. She hopes to get a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa or from Nevada State University and become an elementary school teacher. Jessica is also a youth leader in St. Theresa’s Youth Ministry in Liliha.
Melanie is a graduate student in the departments of Women’s Studies and Political Science at the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa. She works with the Gender Equity and Civil Rights Advocacy Office at UHM, and is co-chair of the women of color collective CEJE (Collective for Equality, Justice, and Empowerment). Melanie has performed at various community actions locally and abroad, and is published by PAWA Inc. in Field of Mirrors: An Anthology of Philippine American Writers (2007). Her political, personal, and artistic practice aim to analyze, understand, unlearn, and undo racism, patriarchy, and all forms of oppression that deny our full humanity and bring pain to the earth and ourselves.
Faith is currently a sophomore at Farrington High School and is with Youth Speaks Hawai’i. She is the vice president of the Farrington Slam Team and was a former T-Shirt Theatre performer. In addition to her creative extracurricular activities, Faith is also involved with her class council in student government.
Music Ensemble and Dance Crew
Mahalohalo Kolintang Ensemble
Founded in October 2008, the Mahalohalo Kolintang Ensemble is rooted in the traditions of Southern Philippine and Malay gong cultures. Mahalohalo is grounded in scholarship and decades of teaching and performative experience, while allowing space for innovation and playfulness. The group has performed in numerous events including the ANAK! Festival at the Hawai’i State Arts Museum, Pasko! at the Hawai’i Filipino Community Center, the Puja Dance Concert at Paliku Theatre and the Pan Pacific Festival. In July 2009, ensemble members conducted fieldwork in North Borneo, Malaysia with Bajau music and dance practitioners.
Tekniqlingz Dance Crew
The Tekniqlingz Dance Crew was created in spring 2008 as an offshoot of the tinikling dance workshops held by the Katipunan Club of the University of Hawai’i-Mānoa. The crew has performed at various events such as National Night Out, the Filipino Fiesta, and A Taste of Kalihi. Members also teach the tinikling dance and give demonstrations in various schools and at the Filipino for Kids Summer Program. With its foundation based on modernizing traditional Philippine folk dances
Finally updated my website. I’ve been meaning to add these pages for a while now, but I had to be hella sick in order for me to do so… but its all good. Im glad to have finally posted my Ministry and Prayer Requests pages. Feel free to check out how God has been moving in our youth in Kalihi.
God bless yall.
Please come out and support our epic youth camp fundraiser show…
“I want nothing for myself. I want Everything from God.” I’ll never forget this quote that I heard from Pastor Scott Douma, during one of our services at Grace Bible a few years ago. I know that God really spoke to me on that, and I received it instantly. I remember leaving our service asking God for understanding to what it meant for me.
For me to fully understand this quote, I needed to understand who my Father in heaven was first. In Isaiah, he states that “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9) Also, n Jeremiah, he states “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11) So with that said, you can see that God has greater plans in store for us. Plans that we could never ever ponder or think of carrying out. He is infinite in wisdom and therefore knows more about us individually than we do ourselves.
Two other scriptures that helped me to understand was… “…Yet what is due me is in the LORD’s hand, and my reward is with my God.’” (Isaiah 49:4); and “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.” (John 16:13-15)
The first scripture is pretty straightforward, but let us break down what the second scripture is saying about what the Holy Spirit does…
The Holy Spirit will guide us into all truth.
The Holy Spirit will speak only what he hears
The Holy Spirit will tell us what is yet to come.
The Holy Spirit will bring glory to Jesus by taking what is Jesus’ and making it known to us.
In this passage you could see the beauty that is the Holy Trinity- All that belongs to Father God is Jesus’s, and Jesus is giving what is His, and making it known to us, through the Holy Spirit, who is going to tell us what is yet to come. So the Holy Spirit will be the one to speak to us and guide us in knowing what step to take in our walk with Him, in order to receive His great gifts and blessings for our lives. You could see the importance of the Holy Spirit’s role in our lives through the words from Paul in the book he wrote for the church of Galatia. He states to them,
“Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25). For Him the Holy Spirit brought him to new places in His quest of fulfilling the great commission (Refer to Acts 16:6-40)
How exciting is that! If you think your life is not all that exciting, then maybe you have not been keeping in step with the Spirit. If you have not been keeping in step with the Spirit, maybe it might be time to obey God when He speaks to you, trust in Him and faith it! You might be passing by on all of God’s greatest blessings!
I don’t know about you, but for me, I don’t want to miss out or forfeit myself from receiving God’s very best for my life. Do you?
As a brother in Christ, I would like to leave you with these two charges and encouragements…
BE CLOSE to your Father in Heaven. Yeah, that means having a intimate relationship with Him. Yeah, that means reading His’ Word. Yeah, that means praying to Him. Yeah, that means worshiping Him daily. Yeah, that means praising Him in all things, during the great times and not so great times. Yeah, that means being still before Him in order for Him to speak to you, sometimes we are too busy doing things. Yeah, that means not giving in to the flesh (selfish desires), but laying down your life as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to Him. Yeah, that means throwing off everything that hinders, the sins that so easily entangles us. Yeah, that means keeping in step with the Spirit, and stepping out in faith and obeying Him when He speaks. And yeah, my friend, that means having child-like faith- trusting in your Father, knowing that He is faithful and able to do what He says He will do… so that means if God tells you to go, just faith it and go, and ask questions later– that’s what it means to be secure in Him. Surely as you obey and go, He will protect you and He will guide you from glory to even greater glory. He will guide you from blessing, to even greater blessing.
RECEIVE His blessings when they do come. Yeah, that means that they do come on His perfect timing, not on our own timing. He knows what’s best for us, and knows that we have the potential of screwing things up for ourselves if we were to take things into our own hands and not trust in our Heavenly Father, but of course, if we our repentant, God is merciful, redemptive, and full of grace, He could still work miracles. But yeah, that means that you have to fight for your blessings. Some blessings come to pass quickly, but some takes some ongoing consistent fighting- through prayer. God wants us to be contenders of the faith, not just attenders at church. We ought to fight for our loved ones, that they will not give in to the enemies schemes. The Word says that you are His child- his son and his daughter. So you are very valuable in God’s eyes and worth His unconditional love, grace and mercy. Yes, you do deserve His very best. Don’t settle for anything less. You can spiritually discern God’s gifts to you when they come. If you can’t spiritually discern yet, I’d think it’ll be best to get closer to God. Remember and trust His’ Word… “…my reward is with my God.”
I spent nearly 21 years of my life living with fleshly desires- doing what seemed fitting for me. Wanting things that would benefit me. Needing things that would fill a void in me. Me, me… me… the unholy trinity! The old “me” was filled with desires that in hindsight, were temporary fixes more-so than fulfilling eternal treasures.
During this 5 year journey of allowing God to weed out and prune off the old “selfish-restrictive-limited-small-thinking-me,” and for Him to grow in me a “His-Kingdom-building-live-to-glorify-God” mindset in me. And trust me, it has been HARD! It has been a struggle for me as well, but the Lord, knows, I am willing. Are you?
More importantly, during these past 5 years, God has been working on building up a child-like faith in me… wanting and trusting that He will meet and exceed all my expectations, and placing in me a true desire of wanting what God wants for me. All the wants that I wanted back then seems “okay”… “Okay” is cool though, But I know that my God desires to bless me with even greater things for me. Greater things that I could ever ask or imagine. I really want to receive every great gift from Him, so I choose to set my standard high, knowing that my God will meet and greatly exceed my standard and expectations for every great gift that He has in store for me. So I choose to have a child-like faith that my Father has great blessings in store for my life, but more importantly, for your life. Are you with me on this?
I want to leave you with this thought. There’s nothing wrong for wanting things- but its one thing to selfishly want something so bad, that out of your insecurity, you take things into your own hands and try to make things work out by your strength, and ultimately leading to a trail of broken hearts and broken relationships in its wake (but of course, if we’re repentant, God is redemptive, and He can work miracles); but its another thing to want what God has for you and me, but doing so with a trusting and patient heart, and having a willingness to do it in His way and under His’ lordship and timing in order to receive His great gifts. My lasting charge and encouragement to you is to choose the most faith-filled option. As for me, every great gifts that I want to receive from God definitely have to be blessed, ordained, fruitful, everlasting and heaven sent. These are the gifts I desire. What do you desire? As for me, i want… More of Him. Less of me. More from Him. Less of me. I want nothing for myself. I want everything from God.
Last night, I spent time looking through ALL my pictures I took from the Philippines and sifting out my favorites. For the first time, I set my screensaver to play a slideshow of my favorite pictures/memories from my trip.
This morning…I opened up my itunes on my laptop and I played my worship2 playlist. I walked into the bathroom and I placed my laptop on the counter. With “To know Your Name” resonating in the CR (my favorite worship song as of now), I was about to undress, then my screensaver comes on for the first time.
I found myself watching the “random” pictures come up for a few minute. Then I heard a still small voice say to me… “I love you this much.” The slideshow continued on, and I couldn’t help but be in awe of Him. I began to look at all the following pictures in a different light. Every following picture would come up and He would say to me, “I love you this much, I wanted youto experience this.” So picture after picture, God was affirming His love for me… Wow! and surely the Lord had allowed me to experience soOo much in two and a half months time… more than I could ever type and explain here.
I stilled my soul before Him, and while I was in the shower, literally naked before the Lord, He shared with me, “Look at all these peoples, their lives have been touched by Me, through you. They are grateful. You made a difference. I love you so much, I allowed you to be part of allMy peoples lives. I love you so much, that I provided for you. I love you so much, I allowed you to experience these heart issues. I love you so much, I allowed you to impart to My Mandaue youth. I love you so much, that I took away your comforts of home, and humbled you, and expanded your boundaries. I love you so much, I allowed you to experience the world conference. I love you so much, that I answered your prayers according to My goodpurpose…”
Then God reminded me of who I once was, this grabe shy, depressed, bitter, introverted kid with constant suicidal thoughts, with a heart against God and with NO heart what so ever for the Philippines; and how HE changed my heart and conformed it to HIS liking, and how He single handedly orchestrated everything and bringing revelation of Who is and what He has done for me and all of us, and calling me into a personal intimate relationship with Him. After receiving Him, as first LORD, then Savior, almost 4 years ago, I made a conscious decision to live the Word out- as a “living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to the Lord,” in other words- to leave my self open and willing to His purpose and plan for me… and His plan was for me to go through the pruning process; in order to build my faith in Him. Surely He constantly refined me in the fire. He surfaced and burned (and still surfaces and burns) up the junk/impurities in me. Amidst the reminder, the Lord with a still small voice, says to me, “I love you so much, Iallowed you to experience the fire. To change your heart. To break you down. To demonstrate My power in your weakness, so that I can build you back up stronger. Restoredand redeemed. Fit and ready to receive My future blessings.”
So here I was still in the shower, and amidst God speaking to me about how much He loves me. I say to Him, “I don’t deserve all this… There is nothing that I could have ever done, to deserve all these great things… I am so imperfect!” Then the Lord immediately says to me… “Grace.”
I got onto my knees prayed and repented and said to the Lord, “I CHOOSE to receive every good gift You have for me. It is by Your’ grace, Your’ undeserved favor for me, that I am blessed. I receive. Thank you God.”
We sometimes (if not all the time) feel that we don’t deserve things, especially great things of God. Sometimes we pray consistently for things to come to pass and in a moments notice, you find yourself walking in the blessing you soOo desired, but at times we feel fearful because of the added responsibility. But the Lord wants us to continue to step out in faith and walk with Him in the blessing, He will never leave you nor forsake you. He would never give you anything that you can’t handle.
Lets just say that is exactly what the Lord had done for me while I was in the Philippines. In Hawaii, I was delighting myself in the Lord, and He placed a desire for me to go to the Philippines in 2006, not really knowing why, but went by faith. I think God wired me like this- if God tells me to go, I have a tendency to GO and ask questions later. (I think that is the kind of heart God desires. What do u think?) Upon leaving Cebu in 2006, God placed another desire in my heart, and that was to be in Cebu for a season in 2007. I continued to pray and put my faith into action and God provided. And by faith I went. Not knowing exactly what will happen, but knowing that He said to “Go.” And that I should be secure in Him that everything will be okay and that He will take care of me while in Cebu.
Early on while in the Philippines, I experienced extreme joy in the ministry advancing His kingdom and keeping in step with His Spirit, and on the other hand, experiencing extreme lows in my heart issues. I was left every night to deal with EVERYTHING, and honestly I could NOT do it on my own. So every night, my heart would be soOo heavy, that I would cry out to my God and cast out ALL my cares on Him, knowing that in due time He will lift me up. And by God’s grace He strengthened my heart (and my back) to withstand the fire. For when I am weak then I am strong. Glory to God!
With all this said, none of this would have happened, if I had NOT heard and obeyed God! I have no regrets, just joy, peace, satisfaction, knowing that I obeyed, and experienced all that HE wanted me to experience, and He was glorified every step of the way. The simplicity of God in wanting to get our attention to speak to us in the most unlikely and the most mundane moments of life, is something I treasure the most. One of my prayers I always have with Him is “God, help me to hear Your voice over ALL things. I want to obey you out of my love for you, and please give me the strength to do as You say. If you tell me Go! I’ll Go!” If this has not been a prayer of your heart, I pray for you that it will.
Be still. Listen for Him and obey. Watch and be amazed.
It has been an amazing two and a half months of my life being with everyone in Cebu and Mandaue, and all praises be to God. I am so grateful to Him for blessing me with such an amazing spiritual family. You ALL have blessed, encouraged, imparted to me grately. You all played a role in getting me closer to Him, and I am forever grateful to you and Him for everything done and said. I know that God will surely bless you all for blessing me. I know that I was exactly where God wanted me to be. So I am secured that I was exactly in the right place at the right time. He taught me so much, so much so that I want to share my life with you, in hopes that I will help you get closer to Him.
Be blessed and RECEIVE His blessings ☺