Tag Archives: love

Receivers

“Then you will say, ‘We ate and drank with you, and you taught in our streets.’ “But he will reply, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from. Away from me, all you evildoers!’ Luke 13:26-27

They ate with the Provider of all things and they were filled. Yet, they did not feed the poor and needy.

They drank with him and their thirst was quenched. Yet, they did not share the fountain of life to the people who were looking for the water of life.

They listened to his messages, they heard his preaching. Yet, they did not pass down what they learn. They did not talk about it to their family and friends.

Whatever they receive they did not give. Whatever they had, they kept it to themselves. Everything stopped with them.

I’m guessing one reason for this — they focused mainly on what they received and not on the one who gave what they received. It filled their stomachs but not their hearts. It quenched their physicality but not their spirituality. It passed through their ears but it was not planted into their hearts. They longed for the gift and not the Giver. Only the Giver satisfies, not the gift.

Jesus is the only way through the door of heavenly gates. And when the time comes, may he not give you the same response, ‘I don’t know you or where you come from. Away from me, all you evildoers!’ Luke 13:27

Make sure your answer is not similar with these comfortable receivers.

Build your relationship with the Giver, Jesus. Love him who feeds you. Live for him who gives his cup to you. Follow him who reveals his Word to you daily.

And may all these allow you to be a giver of whatever he gives you, to know him more, to love him more and thus you may make him known more and make him be loved more.

Always remember this — Jesus knows not mere receivers but receivers who become givers.

 

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Focus

Soon afterward he journeyed to a city called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd accompanied him. As he drew near to the gate of the city, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. A large crowd from the city was with her. Luke 7:11-12

The camera was on him — Jesus.

Then, it was on her — the widow, whose only son is dead.

Both angles of the camera has multitudes.

Jesus was with his disciples and a large crowd following him. The widow as well was with a large crowd from the city.

Both were traveling with large crowds. Yet, the camera zooms on our two protagonists.

Thanks to director Luke.

Luke makes you realize that Jesus should be zoomed out in your life. Your eyes and hearts should be focus on him. There maybe a large pile of life you may have. You have family to love and care for. You have chains of relationships. You have concerns in the office. You have service in the church. The large crowd is part of your life. But Jesus should take the center stage . The crowd only accompanies him.

Focus on Jesus.

Luke also makes you realize how God’s eyes are on you as you travel in this life’s journey. You may be with parade of death or life, God’s cameras are zoomed into you. No matter how thick is the population he has created, his eyes rolls and looks for you. His heart goes after you especially in your lowest of lowest. When death comes to take life. When healing is postponed. When employment is not offered. When family is not one. He walks towards you. He walks to meet you, in your hurt, in your loneliness. His eyes have your face.

Jesus is focus on you.

 

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Father’s Day

God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. John 3:16

He sacrificed for his children.

He is my father. He wakes up early. Eats some food, he provided from his pocket. He is getting ready to go to the store/shop where he is the owner, manager, salesman, utility man, accountant, public relations, etc. He goes to this place not with a car to ride but bundles of textile riding him. He shoulders rolls of materials for jeans and upper wear so his family can shoulder day to day living. He opens and closes the shop as he opens the future for his eight kids. At the end of the day, no beer or any vice to color his monotonous life but rather goes straight home to rest his tired body. No fanfare when he comes home, just a house full of imperfect children. Imperfect as they commit mistakes not following his directions. Milking from his sacrifices day in and day out, they give him reason for him to stop what he is doing but he doesn’t.

I was thinking, how can he do this?

I answered myself — he must have followed God’s footprints.

He gave his only Son for he so loved the world. The world is us. Imperfect us. He rides on the clouds yet our sins burden him. He carried us from our iniquities by giving his Son, his only Son. No day, we don’t falter. No hour, we don’t commit mistakes in his eyes. We justify our action saying we are only humans. Yet, the Father continues to do what he does — loving his imperfect adopted children. And his love is not only given just for us the experience it, it is given for us for our eternal  future. The human father works for a limited future for his children, but our heavenly Father works for an unlimited future for you and me. He opened the eternal gates for us to enter through Jesus Christ.

All the Father is asking is for you and me to believe. Believe in the Son he gave. Believe in his great love.

I am thinking, why believe in his love?

I answer my question again…

He sacrificed his only Child.

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Stone Cold

They were saying to one another, “Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back; it was very large. Mark 16:3-4

You have the same exact question.

You have been laid off. Who will roll the stone of unemployment? You are working for unity. Who will roll the stone walls of division? You are in a mission field. Who will roll the stones in the heart of people? Your family is in a brink of brokenness. Who will roll the stones of pride and hatred? You are a sinner and you are praying for acceptance. Who will roll the stones in the hands of the judgmental? You have kidney problems. Who will move the stones in it?

The three women of Easter knew they were dwarfed by the large stone covering Jesus’ tomb. So they asked the same question you asked. Who will move it for you? Who has the power to pushed it aside? — A God who is alive. Jesus has power over sin and death, much more over the stone. No matter how large the stone is, in your life, he will roll it. He will crushed it. He will push it aside for you to enter life into its fullness.

One thing the women did is this — they looked up. The did not look at one another to move the stone. They did not look at their strength or abilities to roll back the rock. The women did not look at their devotion or faithfulness to open the entrance. They looked up!

Look up to the God who is victorious over death and  sin. Look up to the risen Christ who loves you and who wants to bless you further. Look at him and not at your skills or talents or education. Depend on his faithfulness not on yours. Jesus opens anything that is closed. He clears the road blocks in your life.

Jesus is alive. The stone is not. Jesus has the heat in his body. And the stone? It is stone cold.

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Father

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. John 3:16

Last May, I had to bring my daughter Praise to the emergency room due to her red spots all over her body. She was vomiting and has multiple stints for vowel withdrawals for the past two days. I and her sister had to bring her at 2am in the morning for medical attention. She was given dextrose. The nurse and the doctor injected medicines into her. We were put in an emergency room for 4 hours. Look, this is not even at the border of life to death. But as a father, I was deeply worried for my child. As a father, I have this feeling I don’t want my child to be harmed or be stricken by illness. My day is not the same day when my child is sick. What more if my child dies?

Devastated. Crushed. Distraught. These words described my father when my brother died. As if, the whole world has fallen on his shoulders without ample preparation. As if, his heart has stopped pumping blood, as if his breath has stopped from pulling air. His son, who made him proud – a national board examination topnotch, is now dead. A son, who can’t make a mistake in following his orders, now lies bloody from fatal shooting. His son, who almost all of his life had his father’s favor, has eyes shut forever. The son, whom I remember gave him no headache or heartache, is about to travel and never to be seen. What do you expect from the father when his son dies?

Did God feel this way when He gave His only Son? Sometimes, we think because He is God, this is nothing for Him. It is not.

Was the Father’s day the same on that day His Son was breathless on the cross? The sun He created eclipsed on that day.

Was He devastated, crushed, distraught? I believe He is. We won’t call Him Father if He was not.

In Genesis, we read we were created in the Father’s image and likeness. We look like the Father. We have the innate nature of the Father. He feels what we feel towards our child’s death or injury. His breath stopped the moment His Son’s gasp halted. His world dropped the moment His Son’s head dropped. His tears dripped as His Son’s blood dripped. The Son who has His favor and love died and Jesus’ death was to express the Father’s love for His people.

My father has four other sons and he felt that way. Well, Jesus is the one and only Son and God is a Father.

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God Loves Me

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. John 3:16

What does it mean?

I don’t need to perform to gain His love.
I can’t do anything that will decrease or increase His constant love for me.
His love is not dependent on somebody’s love for me.
He loves me despite I fail to love Him.
I can categorically fail to love someone, yet He will not fail to love me any single second.
His love is a gift, He gives it freely, I receive it freely.
I can make a big time mistake at work or at home, His love for me isn’t affected by that.
His love is not dependent the way I love myself.
I will experience hardships and difficulties and these things don’t measure His love for me.
Someday somehow I will feel unloved, yet this loving God still loves me.
I will fail in attaining my dreams, it doesn’t mean His love has failed me.
I will fall into sin again and again, again and again He will assure me of His love.
There will be hunger and strife in the world, it does not mean lack of His love.
Seasons will change, my situations will change, His love will not.
An important person whom I admire snubs me, I cannot equate this as fading of God’s love.
I don’t keep my prayer time and scripture time, I still keep His love.
Where I am in life doesn’t mean where I am in His love.
I can go on vacation, His love doesn’t.
I love with limitations, He knows no such when it comes to love- He gave His only Son.

God loves me. Period.

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Building a Building

For we are God’s co-workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. 1 Corinthians 3:9

“It’s facing the wrong side!”

This was the informal statement of John, our friend and tourist guide in Michigan, as we traverse Traverse City. He was pointing at one hotel building that was built with its back facing the beautiful scenery of the combined green and blue of the peninsula. John told me the contractors of this building did not know they were erecting the vertical structure with its front 180 degrees from the awesome sight of nature until they have almost finished the building. He concluded that, of course, lawsuits were filed because of this terrible mistake.

How could they not notice they were building a building facing the wrong side?

How could we not notice we are building a building facing the wrong side?

When we are serving as God’s workers, we face the wrong side when we depend on our skills not on His grace. When we are sowing and plowing in God’s field, we turn our backs from Him when we choose the law above love. When we join our hands to build God’s church or community, we shun His beauty when we act as agents of division rather than of unity. When we keep our eyes on our limitation and not on God’s abundance, we build at the wrong side. When we value man’s words than God’s words, we erect erroneously.

May we not make the same mistake. Remember, we are His co-workers not the employer. We are co-hosts; we are not the main host. We are stewards, we are not the owner. Follow His design. Implement His plan. Build by focusing on God. Build by loving one another. Build by accepting our differences and delve on our similarities. Build by being confident of His providence and promises.

May we build God’s building facing God.

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