Monthly Archives: August 2011

Winner

They will fight against you, but not prevail over you, for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD. Jeremiah 1:19

You want out.

You want to quit.

The boss was too demanding. He corrects you publicly. He treats you like you are a machine. He sees your mistakes, he ignores your effort. Unreasonable most of the time, he tells you he told you this and that, and when you look at your notes, none of those are present. He cites his sacrifices, your own forfeits — none sense.

So, you want to jump ship. You visit your resume. You browse the careers section.

If you think you are quitting on him, you’re mistaken (again!).

You are quitting on yourself. You are quitting on God.

The LORD encouraged Jeremiah in his time, “They will fight against you, but not prevail over you, for I am with you to deliver you, says the LORD.” Jeremiah 1:19. Find courage from those words. Find comfort from that sentence. Find strength from that verse. Losing is not in God’s dictionary. You will battle gigantic opposition yet those will not prevail, will not win. You will be, for God is your deliverer.

No, people are not your opposition, challenges are. Challenges at work, at home or in church. Difficulties working with different people. Problems of living with family who doesn’t share your beliefs or opinions. Or health problems remains a big problem after all these years. Trials still test you for all your life.

These things will fight you. These things will go against you. They will try to overcome you. They will try to bring you down. But they will not prevail. They will not win. They will not succeed. They will not topple you.

God is with you always. God will deliver you to victory each time. Just fight. Just be there at the battle field.

When the smoke clears, you are the winner.

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Encircled

Behind and before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me. Psalm 139:5

Multiple choice.

If you know the right answer, you encircle it.

If you are not so sure, you take your time and something runs in your mind as if you are digging the old box in the cellar.

If you don’t know the right one, you guess the one you think is the right one even if you are having second thoughts on the answer beside it.

You depend with your guts. You don’t really know about this one. You did not bother to read or study about it. So, guts is your answer to choose the answer.

The psalmist declared before God that our God encircles us. He puts a round figure around us. This God chooses us. He chooses you. He chooses me. There are multiple choices before our God. Look over the global warming. Fix his eyes on the dwindling economy. Mind the wars between nations. Balance the planets. Yes, he will take some time on these things but he will not encircle these. His hand will encircle you and you alone.

Yes, you may not be the right one or you may not be right, but he still encircles you. He does not think twice or thrice, no second thoughts, when he sees you, his finger scribbles around you. God does not have to depend on his guts, he knows you inside and out and he will still choose you. You think he will delay in choosing you because he is not sure if you will be the good one or bad one? Oh uh, He will not delay in encircling you with his grace and love for his choice of you does not depend on your performance or holiness or righteousness.

Think about this — when you encircled your answer, chances are, you come back to this number if you are reviewing your work. God’s hand does not leave you after he encircled you. His hand stays with you. His hand rests upon you. For he chooses you. For you are his choice. When he chooses you, he stays with you.

You are his choice among multiples. You are encircled.

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God Comes Near

During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea. Matthew 14:25

I thought it was all about walking on water.

It wasn’t.

Jesus was coming near towards his followers.

This is the point of the sentence. But what we see the most is the fact he walked on water. He could have fly to them. He could have commanded the wind to blow the opposite way and bring them ashore. He could have asked the army of fish to push or pull them near him. He could have called angels to go down and bring him to the boat. But he chose to walk on the clear liquid.

To come near to his followers. To be near with people who are imperfect. Towards the ordinary twelve men.

His miracles have the same purpose. For him to be near to us. For him to be up close and personal with us.

List down all the “walking on water” moments in your life.

Healing of the body. From being unemployed to being employed. Peace and love in the family. Crisis solved at work. Typhoon diverts from your nation or city. Your kid turns to be an obedient one. Blessed financially, more than you prayed for.

Then measure on how much has he become closer to you. Has he become more than a God who is in heaven? Has he become more than a miracle worker? Has he become personal to you?

Don’t allow the miracle overshadow the miracle of him coming near. The miracle is given so we can live and enjoy his presence. A God who is near. A God who is within your reach. A God who is personal. A God who can come into your boat. He wants to come towards you.

How does God come near?

He will do everything, including walking on the water.

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Waves and Wind Against You

Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it. Matthew 14:24

It was the wind.

It is the culprit, why they are now at a distance farther than before where Jesus is. It blew the boat from where they are. It blew them away from him. It tossed the boat. It tossed them. Inch by inch. Feet by feet. Yard by yard. Mile by mile. Not a one wave per wind puff. They were tossed by many waves in as many wind volume that did the trick.

We don’t know if the disciples were asleep or were awake and were just no match against the wind and waves but they did not do anything in combating against the wind. Another thing is they forgot to release the anchor or the anchor is not too big for the big winds.

One sure thing we know though is this, winds and waves collaborated to tossed them away from Jesus.

Winds.

They are part of your life.

They tossed you far away from Christ. They are trying to bring you some miles father from him. They blow your life away from the offer of abundance in Jesus. Event after event. Hurt after another hurt. Habitual sin(s). Problems at home. Concerns at the office. Health issues in the family. Rejection from others. Peer pressure. Burning out spiritually and physically.

You know what you can do? Battle the double “W” — waves and wind.

Be awake. Recognize the wind against you.

Bring deep the anchor of faith. Be deep in prayer and in scripture.

Paddle against it. Don’t be alone swimming opposite of it. Get help. Give help. Get and give support.

Bring down your sail. Bring down your pride — anything high in your heart and mind may give you hard time. Get it down and bend your knees.

Waves and wind are here to stay.

And so you are. Near Jesus.

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