“The worst thing one can do is not to try, to be aware of what one wants and not give in to it, to spend years in silent hurt wondering if something could have materialized - never knowing.”—Jim Rohn (via kari-shma)
“I am broken. Everyday is a new battle, but I am understanding that the war is already won. It was won by a man willing to give up everything for my wretched self. As broken as I stand He is whole. As hard as the battle seems He is victorious. I am trusting that beauty will come. And He will be glorified through the messiness of my life.”—G. Beltran (via heismore-iamless)
“How was your day?”
“Text me when you get home so I know you’re safe”
“How are you?”
“I hope you’re feeling better”
“Have a good day today!”
“I miss you”
“Can you come over?”
“Can I come over?”
“Can I see you?”
“Can I call you?”
“Want something to drink?”
“Watch your step”
“Let’s watch a movie”
“What are you up to?”
“How is your day so far?”
“It will be okay”
“I’m here for you”
“Do you need anything?”
“Are you hungry?”
“I just wanted to hear your voice”
“You just made my day”
You don’t have to hear “I Love You” to know that someone does. Listen carefully. People speak from the heart more often than you think.
I no longer know who I am
or who I have to be
and some days
I forget who you are
and what you’ve done for me
so I pray
remind me who to be
Lord remind me every day”—Today - Eric Ballard (via ericballard)
Differentiating whether certain thoughts, urges, and emotions come from me or come from God is very difficult for me to discern. I have to admit that this may be one of the most frustrating thing for me in my walk with God. I honestly would love to be able to know if it’s the Holy Spirit filling me up or it’s just merely my thoughts.
Last semester, as I was finishing a final exam of mine, I had felt that all hope was lost and that I would fail my course because of this exam. However, as I was walking back home from the exam hall and reminiscing at how ridiculously helpless I felt, this overwhelming urge to laugh appeared. I just had to laugh at how badly the exam went. I just had to laugh because there was absolutely nothing left that I could do about it. I just had to laugh at the circumstance I was in. I just HAD to laugh. Period.
Now it wasn’t a sarcastic laugh at myself like it may sound it is, but I can honestly say that it was a laughter out of pure joy. Joy which I had no idea where it came from. It felt odd and really great at the same time BUT, I had no idea if I had gone lunatic from the stress or it was a God given joy. No matter how much I wondered and asked God, I still didn’t have a satisfactory answer. Until today.
"Blessed are you if your laughter means that you have let go in reckless confidence all that shackles you to yesterday, imprisons you in your small self today, and frightens you with the uncertainty of tomorrow. Blessed are you who laugh, because you are free!" ~ Brennan Manning
There is no more hesitation now. After reading this quote, I immediately knew that my euphoric episode following my exam was from the Holy Spirit pouring joy into my heart. He was teaching me to let go and leave the rest to Him. It may have taken several months until I got a response, nonetheless, He answered my pondering; I feel so blessed to have experienced that.
I know that this is still the tip of the iceberg. I’m aware that this incident didn’t make things any clearer in terms of learning how to differentiate thoughts that belong to me or God. However, I am thankful that this incident is one of many that reaffirms my faith in Him. It’s an incident which reminded me of how blessed I am to have such an amazing and joyful God.
p.s. For those wondering, I did pass the course! =D
“Immersing yourself in His presence: whether in singing, writing, dancing, playing sports, worshiping, listening to holy music…closes the door to those who wouldn’t do you good. Allowing those like you to be attracted to the fragrance of Christ you emit”—(via godlydatingandfeelings)
The head of a company survived 9/11 because
His son started kindergarten.
Another fellow was alive because it was
His turn to bring donuts.
One woman was late because her
Alarm clock didn’t go off in time.
One was late because of being stuck on the NJ Turnpike
Because of an auto accident.
One of them
Missed his bus.
One spilled food on her clothes and had to take
Time to change.
Car wouldn’t start.
Get a taxi.
The one that struck me was the man
Who put on a new pair of shoes that morning,
Took the various means to get to work but before.
He got there, he developed a blister on his foot.
He stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid.
That is why he is alive today..
Now when I am
Stuck in traffic,
Miss an elevator,
Turn back to answer a ringing telephone…
All the little things that annoy me,
I think to myself,
This is exactly where
I’m meant to be
At this very moment
“When your breakthrough does not come immediately, it is not because God has forgotten you or left you on the shelf. He is developing and building you, polishing you so that when the time is right, as with an arrow, He’ll unleash you. And like a skillfully crafted and honed arrow, you will hit the mark.”—~ Joseph Prince
As a new year dawns, I see all that you have done and all that is left to complete in my life. Rather than be specific, I recognize that I must let you work on your terms.
With that frame of mind, I ask that your love:
Teaches me to know you better,
Reveals your grace in countless ways,
Opens my heart to the whisperings of your Spirit,
Shocks me with the reality of who you are.
I pray that these requests ground my growth for this year, while I recognize that you are constantly using me to express your love to other people. I ask that those requests guide me as I love the people you have placed in my life.
I pray that my life:
Teaches people to know you better,
Exposes your grace in countless ways,
Opens hearts to the whisperings of your Spirit,
Shocks people with the reality of who you are
I love you. I praise you. I ask that 2014 fulfills these requests as I look to you and live by your Spirit.
“Lord, let us not be fooled by lights, pretty ribbons, pies, or green pine trees. Unveil our hearts to Your Christmas message. Jesus was born in a manger, with animal poo and hay. For the Prince of peace, the son of the Almighty and King of kings, this was enough. As Heavens and the shepherds did 2000 years ago, today we, too, rejoice over the birth of Christ”—~ Laura Santoso
A few years ago, I learned a fact about Johann Sebastian Bach that really impacted my understanding of life. Whenever Bach was writing music, he almost always began and ended his compositions by scrawling three little letters:
These letters may sound random, until one learns of their meaning. Soli Deo Gloria. Glory to God alone. Bach’s choice to include those 3 little letters reveals a lot about his character. For him, every action began by dedicating the work to God and ended by reiterating that everything is for God’s glory.
That idea stuck with me over the years and I’ve been hearing those 3 little letters throughout my life lately. Maybe it’s because I’ve been more aware of my actions or maybe it’s because I’ve been starting to give serious thought about the reasons behind my intended career. Every time I start to doubt my abilities or fear about what the future might hold, in my mind I keep hearing, “S. D. G.” over and over again.
Why? Because those letters sum up all that matters. Am I living for God’s glory and trusting him to make something spectacular out of my efforts or am I living for my glory? Am I living in such a way that my days are bookended and infused with the phrase, “Your will be done,” or am I silently proclaiming, “My will be done?”
I hope those 3 letters will undeniably dedicate and sum up my life. Although I know it might take a lifetime to see that desire come to fruition, I am confident that all God is waiting for is me to sincerely communicate those letters in some way and let his Spirit animate my reality.
“So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.”—~ Colossions 3:1 (MSG)
I’ve been giving a lot of thought about the friendships in my life. I’ve tried to make people a priority because I finally reached the point where I realized I had nothing except acquaintanceships at best and remained a social enigma at worst. I decided that I would make relationships a priority because my life and faith require community. Over the past months, I’ve consciously asked God for opportunities to grow relationships and I began to initiate community rather than respond to it.
It’s been exhilarating.
The thrill isn’t the number of people I’ve grown to know. The excitement is not about specific events or actions. The joy has been the act of getting to know a person in depth: finding the preferences, thoughts, opinions, and everything else about a person; searching for ways to communicate my appreciation of him/her; and discovering that honesty is the best policy (even when it causes disappointment).
Above all, I’ve rediscovered one of the most important aspects of faith.
Getting to know people has taught me a lot about life, but the most important aspect is that you love people for who they are, not what they do. Love is not about what your needs and desires are for a relationship, but how you can serve a person after uncovering their uniqueness and becoming a piece of furniture in his/her life. I’ve known these truths for a long time, but recent experience has pushed them into my consciousness.
In relation to faith, it’s the same idea. When I approach God and ask, “Why do I love you?” the response ought to be obvious. I hope Jesus will reply, “Because you love who I AM, not what I’ve done.” Sure, Christ has saved me; however, my affections must transcend a love of a particular aspect of Christ.
Jesus is Savior, but he is so much more. When I love God, it should not be about my needs from the relationship. I must love God because I know who he is and want to serve him.
What will you hear when you ask God, “Why do I love you?”
As part of a class at my university, the professor gave us the option of writing a final paper about any topic related to mathematics or a mathematician. After gettingclearance
, I started looking into the faith of Leonhard Euler.
For those of you who are about to skip over this post, rest assured that it’s not about math; however, it should be noted that basically anything a person sees in high school algebra or precalculus relates in some way to Euler. He was a genius, but he also had an unshakeable faith in Jesus Christ. On several occasions, he spoke about Christianity and even wrote a series of letters about various topics related to faith.
Among his Letters to a German Princess, Euler addresses the reasons behind evil and suffering in the world. Curiously, he refutes any suggestion that God is anything except good by justifying the existence of suffering as situations in which God works. While acknowledging that suffering and evil are hard to understand in this life, Euler concludes:
We may rest assured that it is not from caprice [randomness], or merely to vex us, that God disposes the events in which we are concerned, but that they must infallibly terminate in our true happiness. Those who consider all events in this light will soon have the satisfaction of being convinced that God exercises
of words, but it is completely true. While it is hard to understand the purpose of suffering and we get frustrated when life happens, in hindsight a Christian always ends up seeing how God worked through those situations to bring him/her to joy.
As hard as it is to understand, God cares about you and chooses
to work in the midst of sin, death, and pain. That’s what I think Euler is getting at in saying God cares in a peculiar way. God is good, people are bad, and the world gets messed up from sin; however, God continues
to care to the extent that he is always at work even when we suffer. He is never far from us.
The question a person is left with after considering this truth is not if God is good, but why don’t more people respond? Why do people choose
other things over God? Why is it that we try to “tough it out” or “go it alone” when life is hard, when God is trying to bring us to his perfect joy the entire time?
“There is a big difference between blind faith and honest faith. I was raised in the church. I have had to wrestle with what it is I believe outside of my friends and family. An honest faith is one that wrestles with doubts and hard questions. As I was growing up, I was afraid to question what I had been taught. I feared the outcome if I were to really question the beliefs I had inherited. What I found was in the moments I expressed my doubts and searched out the truth, I actually drew closer to the faith. I realized it was deeper than religion.”—Chad Butler (via pressure-the-hinges)
“I used to think it was awkward to give random compliments to the people in my life. Now, I really don’t care if it’s awkward because I realize that my honesty might be one of those random instances where God whispers to a person, “I love you more than you will ever know.” Perhaps telling a person you appreciate them, pointing out a phrase or act that lifts your spirits, or greeting a person as beautiful/handsome might seem weird… then again, God works in mysterious ways.”—Thought about today. (via churchjanitor)
“I want people to see that my faith that goes beyond feel-good optimistic bumper sticker slogans that are disconnected from the realities of life. I want a faith that causes people to say, “That guy knows that life sucks, but he keeps moving forward with a confidence I’ve never seen in anyone else. He knows people can disappoint, yet he chooses to treat each person with dignity and love.” Basically, I want a faith that makes God tangible, which ironically would make a decent bumper sticker.”—Reflection on my life lately. (via churchjanitor)
God desires ALL men to be saved. Jesus died for ALL. If you knew those who would accept & those who would reject, why would you die for all?
Every added sin on Jesus added on His agony. My motivation for not sinning is not that I won’t be forgiven; I have been forgiven past, present, and future. I do not want to sin anymore, I don’t understand how it works, I don’t want to add on to the agony and pain of Jesus some 2000 years ago. I do not want to add to the agony. Every sin that was placed upon Jesus, it was not just nails, it was not just the crown of thorns, it was not just the whippings on His back. The greatest agony & the greatest pain was that Jesus became sin; every sin that would ever be committed. If I was God & I was pouring out the sins of humanity on my Son, I would only pour the sins of those who would accept the sacrifice of my Son. But the Father poured out, even if those who do sin never recognize that He already paid for their sins, Jesus took the pain & the agony of their sin even though they insist on paying for it themselves by not believing in Him.
I would never do it like that. Because I know, they would never accept the agony my Son went through on their behalf. But He came up under the agony of ALL sins that would EVER be committed by every human being that would ever live. ALL.
Why? There’s only one explanation: love. Love on such an irrational, illogical level.
Copyright: Judas Smith, The City Church (emphasis added)
You know that moment when you’re reading a book and you just have to stop and bite your lip and squeal or sigh or close your eyes and wrinkle your nose and forehead and press the book against your heart and just like sit there and try to soak up the gorgeous literature via osmosis?
“I think the big mistake in schools is trying to teach children anything, and by using fear as the basic motivation. Fear of getting failing grades, fear of not staying with your class, etc. Interest can produce learning on a scale compared to fear as a nuclear explosion to a firecracker.”—~ Stanley Kubrick