December 30, 2006

yes, it’s in the Bible, but…

Many misunderstandings regarding the Bible and Biblical Christianity stem from taking verses out of context. Whether unknowingly or maliciously, the intended meaning may differ from what is perceived because a certain passage is magnified when the rest of the statement is disregarded or ignored.

The following passages marked in red are in danger of being quoted alone, while those in boldface make the statement more complete (and definitely closer to what God is telling us!). Of course, nothing beats reading the complete book, nay, the complete Bible! And always ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what He really means. :) Blessed, happy reading!
  • The fool says in his heart,There is no God.’ -- Psalm 14:1
  • If the dead are not raised to life,Let’s eat and drink. Tomorrow we die.” -- 1 Corinthians 15:32
  • No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him; but God has revealed it to us by His Spirit. -- 1 Corinthians 2:9-10
  • The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever. -- Deuteronomy 29:29
  • Many liars have gone out into the world. These deceitful liars are saying that Jesus Christ did not have a truly human body. But they are liars and the enemies of Christ. -- 2 John 7
  • For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill Him; not only was He breaking the Sabbath, but He was even calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God. -- John 5:18

careful; might be false prophets…

Dear friends, don’t believe everyone who claims to have the Spirit of God. Test them all to find out if they really do come from God. Many false prophets have already gone out into the world, and you can know which ones come from God. His Spirit says that Jesus Christ had a truly human body. But when someone doesn’t say this about Jesus, you know that person has a spirit that doesn’t come from God and is the enemy of Christ. You knew that this enemy was coming into the world and now is already here. -- 1 John 4:1-3

You can tell God’s children from the devil’s children, because those who belong to the devil refuse to do right or to love each other. –- 1 John 3:10

Your prophets deceived you
with false visions
and lying messages--
they should have warned you
to leave your sins
and be saved from disaster.
-- Lamentations 2:14

Those prophets refuse to be honest. They tell my people there will be peace, even though there's no peace to be found. They are like workers who think they can fix a shaky wall by covering it with paint. -- Ezekiel 13:10

Watch out for false prophets! They dress up like sheep, but inside they are wolves who have come to attack you. -- Matthew 7:15

You can tell what a tree is like by the fruit it produces. You cannot pick figs or grapes from thornbushes. Good people do good things because of the good in their hearts. Bad people do bad things because of the evil in their hearts. Your words show what is in your heart. -- Luke 6:43-45

False messiahs and false prophets will come and work great miracles and signs. They will even try to fool God's chosen ones. -- Matthew 24:24, Mark 13:22

You are in for trouble when everyone says good things about you. That is what your own people said about those prophets who told lies. -- Luke 6:26

Sometimes false prophets spoke to the people of Israel. False teachers will also sneak in and speak harmful lies to you. But these teachers don't really belong to the Master who paid a great price for them, and they will quickly destroy themselves. -- 2 Peter 2:1

Many liars have gone out into the world. These deceitful liars are saying that Jesus Christ did not have a truly human body. But they are liars and the enemies of Christ. So be sure not to lose what we have worked for. If you do, you won't be given your full reward. -- 2 John 7-8


to safeguard against false prophets:
Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. -- Acts 17:11


December 29, 2006

the perfect gift…

From a preaching by Dr. James Merritt

The perfect gift expresses the giver’s love and meets the recipient’s need.

God’s gift of His Son Jesus:
  • Expresses His perfect love for us; and
  • Meets our greatest need: salvation from our sins
merry Christmas everyone! :)

what does IMMANUEL mean for us?

From a preaching by Gregory Dickow, in the series “Changing Your Life”.

“A virgin will have a son, and He will be called Immanuel,” which means “God is with us.” (Matthew 1:23, fulfilling the prophecy in Isaiah 7:14)

What does this mean for us?

1) You will never be alone.
The Lord has promised that He will not leave us nor desert us. (Hebrews 13:5)

2) You will never be afraid.
Perfect love casts out fear. (1 John 4:18)

3) You will never be depressed.
"I bring you news of great joy." (Luke 2:10)

4) You will never be left out.
Grace is given freely and available to all. (Ephesians 1:6)

5) You will never be let down.
God has given us hope that does not disappoint. (Romans 5:5)

it’s for God to know…but God reveals stuff to us!

from Randy Alcorn's HEAVEN, though the discussion applies to any topic that has been closed off by people as “not for us to know” even when the pertaining truth has already been revealed in the Bible.

A pastor visiting my office asked what I was writing. “A big book on Heaven,” I said.

Well,” he replied, “since Scripture says ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him,’ what will you be talking about? Obviously, we can’t know what God has prepared for us in Heaven.” (He was referring to 1 Corinthians 2:9.)

I said to him what I always say: “You didn’t complete the sentence. You also have to read verse ten.” Here’s how the complete sentence reads: “‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him’ --- but God has revealed it to us by His Spirit” (emphasis added). The context makes it clear that this revelation is God’s Word (verse 13), which tells us what God has prepared for us. After reading a few dozen books about Heaven, I came to instinctively cringe whenever I saw 1 Corinthians 2:9. It’s a wonderful verse; it’s just that it’s nearly always misused. It says precisely the opposite of what it’s cited to prove!

What we otherwise could not have known about Heaven, because we’re unable to see it, God says He has revealed to us through His Spirit. This means that God has explained to us what Heaven is like. Not exhaustively, but accurately. God tells us about Heaven in His Word, not so we can shrug our shoulders and remain ignorant, but because He wants us to understand and anticipate what awaits us.

Other verses are likewise pulled out to derail discussions about Heaven. For example, “The secret things belong to the Lord our God” (Deuteronomy 29:29). Heaven is regarded as a “secret thing.” But the rest of the verse --- again, rarely quoted --- completes the thought: “But the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever.

We should accept that many things about Heaven are secret and that God has countless surprises in store for us. But as for the things God has revealed to us about Heaven, these things belong to us and to our children. It’s critically important that we study and understand them. That is precisely why God revealed them to us!

Another “silencer” is 2 Corinthians 12:2-4. Paul says that fourteen years earlier he was “caught up to paradise,” where he “heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell.” Some people use this verse to say we should not discuss what Heaven will be like. But all it says is that God didn’t permit Paul to talk about his visit to Heaven. In contrast, God commanded the apostle John to talk about his prolonged visit to Heaven, which he did in detail in the book of Revelation. Likewise, Isaiah and Ezekiel wrote about what they saw in Heaven.

Although it’s inappropriate for us to speculate on what Paul might have seen in Heaven, it’s certainly appropriate to discuss what John saw, because God chose to reveal it to us. If He didn’t intend for us to understand it, why would He bother telling us about it? (When was the last time you wrote someone a letter using words you didn’t expect them to comprehend?) So, we should study, teach, and discuss God’s revelation about Heaven given to us in His Word.

Certainly, not everything the Bible says about Heaven is easily envisioned. Consider Ezekiel’s description of the living creatures and their wheels and the manifestation of God’s glory that leaves the prophet groping for words (Ezekiel 1:4-28). Still, many other passages concerning Heaven are much easier to grasp.
Isaiah 55:9 is another verse often cited in support of a “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach to Heaven: “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” God’s thoughts are indeed higher than ours, but when He reduces his thoughts into words and reveals them in Scripture, He expects us to study them, meditate on them, and understand them --- again, not exhaustively, but accurately.

“Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1). This is a direct command to set our hearts on Heaven. And to make sure we don’t miss the importance of a heaven-centered life, the next verse says, “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” God commands to set our hearts and minds on Heaven.

seek ye first :)

Perhaps you’re afraid of becoming “so heavenly minded you’re of no earthly good.” Relax --- you have nothing to worry about! On the contrary, many of us are so earthly minded we are of no heavenly or earthly good. C. S. Lewis observed, “If you read history, you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were just those who thought most of the next. The Apostles themselves, who set on foot the conversion of the Roman Empire, the great men who built up the Middle Ages, the English Evangelicals who abolished the Slave Trade, all left their mark on Earth, precisely because their minds were occupied with Heaven. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. Aim at Heaven and you will get earth ‘thrown in’: aim at earth and you will get neither.
We need a generation of heavenly minded people who see human beings and the earth itself not simply as they are, but as God intends them to be.

December 25, 2006

musings of a gift wrapper

(the one who WRAPS the gifts, NOT the paper...oh well. ;p merry CHRISTmas everyone! :) )

now i have experienced the time, effort, sacrifice, and LOVE showered upon me by those who have given me gifts in the past. from the selection (what gift is suitable for them? what does she need? what does he want?) to the presentation (the wrapping must be JUST right).

now i know, because i am doing it myself. i have never felt so generous and thoughtful --- it's an answered prayer, this Christmas gift-giving adrenaline rush! -- and i'm so happy that the gifts are, FOR them :)

in giving and in loving, may we all come a little closer to realizing the giving and the loving that GOD is showering upon us...especially as we celebrate the Father sending His Son who gave His very life, and the Holy Spirit guiding us to goodness and life, eternal and to the full.

merry Christmas everyone :)


The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him "Immanuel" — which means, "God with us."

(Matthew 1:23, Isaiah 7:14)

during the first times that i joined Bible study, or even the orientation for Sunday school teachers, i was subtly struck at the REAL-ness of God as we closed our eyes and prayed. There is a stillness, a gentleness, but the most obvious sense that there is a PRESENCE with us.

Emmanuel." "God is with us." He always has been. It's only up to each one of us to decide if we want to be with Him.

merry Christmas everybody :)

December 23, 2006

partner with us as we share the Good News in MYANMAR in April 2007 :)

Turn to me and be saved,
all you ends of the earth;
for I am God, and there is no other.

Myanmar, the largest nation in Southeast Asia, is a primarily Buddhist nation still embroiled in military and ethnic conflict. like me, you might have been familiar with its old name, Burma, or its democracy advocate Aung San Suu Kyi who is in house arrest since 1989.

i'm happy to see that Myanmar has its own Ministry of Religious Affairs that encourages goodwill and peace towards people of all faiths :) as a Christian who will go on a short-term mission trip to that country, i'll be actively promoting Jesus :D but it's encouraging that, as i see it, Myanmar has a tolerant attitude towards missionaries. it's also definitely a big reminder for me that, as He has revealed Himself in the Bible, God is love, and honors the free will of the children He has created.

i've never been out of the Philippines!!! it's really exciting, especially because the main reason i'm going is to spread the Good News (as compared to now, when i try to talk about God during my day job, or in going to or from my day job, et cetera). Paul reminds us to glorify God in all we do but it's refreshing to set my priorities not just in my head and heart but also in the nitty-gritty of real life. time to practice what i preach, which is, to preach :D about God and His redeeming love for us.

this is the chance for you to be a missionary partner :) you can help our team through your prayers and financial support. partner means you are laboring with us on the field as we reach out to our Burmese brothers and sisters. overall, each of us needs US $1,500 or PhP 75,400 :) this includes travel, accommodation, food, and other expenses like tithes and administrative costs (for newsletters to update the missions partners, etc.).

i have been a World Partner myself for the last two years. i know how it feels to part with my so-called hard-earned money but knowing that it is going to support a great, noble purpose. guess what? i'm actually a partner of the pastors and their families who are out there in foreign (to them) lands, in some cases risking their very lives to share Jesus. and guess what? i've never been more blessed financially, as when i give. (a mathematical paradox, like 5 loaves + 2 loaves = 5000+ fed!) God blesses us as we bless our fellowmen.

i believe and know that God will make a way for me to go to missions :) simply because it is His will that all turn to Him and be saved (Isaiah 45:22) :) it's not about me, and all about Him :)

if you would like to learn more about my church, Every Nation, go here. Our goal is to reach Every Nation in Our Generation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. :)

if you would like to make a contribution or can refer me to people who might, don't hesitate to contact me by making a comment here or sending an email to all financial transactions will be dealt with utmost transparency, with receipts and acknowledgements and newsletters from the field :)

as early as now i'd like to thank you for reading this and being a partner as you support us through prayers and finances. thank you, thank you, and i know that God will bless your concern and generosity a hundredfold. :)

December 22, 2006

hey, dudes!

here are two interesting wake-up calls (or knocks on the head) for entertainers who are, after all, public figures. found in the Feedback section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Dec. 12, 2006. okay, okay, i printed this mainly because one of them was mine :) (yay, the editors thought it worthy enough to be published, even if partially! :D )

Hey, dudes!

From Teci Pulido (, Modesta Village, San Mateo:
We were watching "Eat Bulaga" today (Dec. 1) and heard Mr. Joey de Leon commenting on the inconvenience of having canceled shows and tapings because of mega-typhoon Reming. He said that next time, there should be cancellations "kapag umuulan na talaga (when it's already raining)."
I found that short-sighted and selfish. I, for one, applaud PAG-ASA and Malacanang's efforts to be cautious and warn the people ahead of time. It was a far cry from years past, when classes and offices were suspended too late in the day, when most people had already gone out. Which is more inconvenient, Mr. de Leon?

From Sanny Cruz (, 129 Plassey Street, Penarth, Wales, UK:
I caught excerpts of Miss Earth 2006 on Ariel Ureta's hosting style didn't cut it for me. I found him rude and his jokes, inappropriate. He interrupted Miss Venezuela, who was still speaking, by saying, "Enough, enough." He told Ms. Egypt, "No cheating." I hope next year's organizers will assign someone better!

December 13, 2006

your appreciation is appreciated :D

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. -- Ephesians 2:10

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.
Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one anotherand all the more as you see the Day approaching. -- Hebrews 10:24-25

my comment gets published in the most-read newspaper in the country, and i get four green stars, all in one day! :D (that's December 12, 2006, a Tuesday.)
  1. comment/letter to the editor/feedback: regarding the remarks of one television host. (see here)
  2. green stars: courtesy of the folks who are fellow members of i put a comment (see here) and some readers gave green stars yay! here's the definition of "green stars" sent through my email when they notified me that i got them:
      • Congratulations! You've been sent a Green Star - a statement of appreciation from Jessica LeAnn (and Star River and Tibor Ax and LarS S....).
      • Thank you for contributing to the Care2 Connect community!
      • What is a Green Star? It's a simple "Thank You" from a Care2 member. There's no need to respond. The sender is simply acknowledging that you've made a contribution to the community. Green Stars may be sent because you made a good post in a discussion forum, or because you took the time to make your personal profile interesting, or for a thousand other good reasons. Don't know what you did to deserve the praise? If the person has revealed their identity you may contact them through their profile page, otherwise, don't worry - be happy, you're appreciated! Enjoy!
  3. and of course there's the latest feedback i get from readers of this blog (that's YOU).

showing appreciation for someone's kindness, goodness, etc. is almost as important as the good deed itself. i hope all of us would learn how to show our appreciation for our blessings (whether material or spiritual, whether objects or persons). it keeps me going :) not that we do the good we do for recognition and fame, or for others to notice us, but appreciation serves as a reminder that doing the right thing is always worth it....especially during those dark times when we are tempted to quit and just take the easy, wide path to destruction.

don't be afraid to give thanks, compliments, encouragement, and other forms of appreciation.besides, what is there to lose? and there's so much to gain.


His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!' -- Matthew 25:21

December 11, 2006

demons in our midst.

(what can you say about a man who kills his own adult daughter? what if the man's excuse was that his daughter was possessed by demons? the original story is found here...and two comments including my own are found here. you can also read the story and comments below...and to echo "grandma pat", the first commenter, what do you think?)


(1) BBC news story

Daughter 'possessed by demons'

By Adnan Adil
BBC Urdu service, Lahore

Pakistani police have arrested a man accused of murdering his 22-year-old daughter because he said she was possessed by demons.
The incident took place on Thursday in the remote village of Dus Ale in Harappa district in Punjab province.
Police say the father, Jamal Arain, confessed to killing his daughter with a butcher's knife.
They say he also confessed to putting the body on a pyre, with the help of his sons, and setting it on fire.
'Charred to bone'
The men were arrested as news of the incident filtered out of the remote area.
Local police also recovered the body, '"which was charred to the bone" according to Falak Sher, the police official in charge.
Police say Mr Arain told them a "churail' (female demon) had possessed his daughter a few days ago and threatened to kill him and his sons.
The father said that on Thursday the churail attacked his daughter and he killed her before the demon could take full control of her body.
According to police, the father said his daughter's possession had stemmed from the time of her recent engagement.
He added that soon after her engagement she set her dowry on fire.
Every year hundreds of women are killed in Pakistan in disputes over their right to marry of their own will.
The culprits are usually family members and the motives stated for the murder are either outlandish or honour based.
If the culprits are family members, they often escape punishment as under Pakistan's Islamic laws, the victim's family has the right to forgive the culprits.


(2) first comment (not mine)

how horrible and sad to read this. all over the world, women are supressed in their rights to do what they feel is good for them. i don't believe for a minute she was possessed by 'a demon'. the father was p.o'ed that she was engaged to be married. (shame on the family??) the father sounds like he was possessed in his ambition to kill her. by the in the hell can a father kill his child??? i can't fathom that. i mean, really,'s demented and sick, and just plain evil. i hope they all go to jail, chances are...they'll get away w/it, ya think???


(3) my comment

in killing his daughter it seems like he was the one possessed by demons :(

but in committing this terrible crime he needs help all the more. this man needs God. i do NOT believe he is completely evil and utterly hopeless; we should not condemn him because at one point in our lives -- maybe even right now -- we were or are as wretched as he.

i'm not justifying the terrible act he committed, but turning our backs on him now would only make things worse. i know it's easier said than done but we have to choose to help him and choose to believe that there is hope for him as well as for the rest of us.

God bless and may God enable us to always do what is good, right and best.

just because we don't see and it hasn't happened before...

(i read about a scientist's "God Problem" here. Below is my reply.)

Hi. I'm a PhD student in Physics and a Bible-believing Christian. There are many people out there like myself who do not see any conflict between science and God. Science is knowledge by measurement, by experiment, using our senses, but admitting from the start that said senses are limited. God, as He speaks in the Bible, gives knowledge by revelation: things we cannot figure out on our own.

Sure, walking on water cannot be us. It can be done by some insects :) Suppose, for the sake of argument, that there is a God and that He created the universe. Would it not be so much easier for Him to walk on the water He made?

We have to remember that the Big Bang Theory is just a *theory* and that no one of us was actually here when it happened; we have to allow for the possibility of other theories like Intelligent Design (for those who cannot say G-o-d). In the same way, evolution is a theory as well; if we are the objective scientists we say we are we have to look at *all* possible explanations.

Maybe the aspect that disturbs some scientists so much is that God -- and Jesus, when He walked the earth -- violates many if not all physical laws and principles we know. But does He really? I really like this illustration: if an apple is supposed to fall to the ground and I catch it in midair, did I violate the laws of physics? Not really. I just intervened, in a manner that is ordered and scientifically sound as well.

Born to a virgin? It hasn't happened before..again, to humans. (Parthenogenesis occurs in some animals.) But just before it never happened to anyone else before or after Jesus *does not* mean it cannot happen. For one, He's God and we're not. (Okay, so this might seem like circular reasoning, but please stay with me. :) ) Secondly, as scientists we know that just one counterexample disproves the entire theory or law, just like that. Our moms definitely weren't virgins when we were born, so let's look at another instance.

Jesus claimed that our bodies will be resurrected to eternal life if we follow Him and let Him save us. Suppose now that He did rise from the dead. Then by golly, it's possible for us as well. Sure, nobody else we personally know rose from the dead before. But regardless of the billions of people who have died and decomposed on this planet, ONE counterexample (remember our scientific training) is enough. Yes, it is possible.

Obviously another thing that irks many scientists is when people say that "science can never prove or disprove the existence of a god". This looks like a convenient way to stop all arguments eh? :) But again being a scientist I respectfully disagree. I have seen and heard many stories of people being encountered by God on their *own personal* level: whether one's needs are emotional, psychological, physical, and so on. He meets you where you are. The fact that all-powerful God let Himself be born to mere mortals, work, sweat, defecate and die would show us that He adjusts to us so we could grasp Him.

For scientists, especially astronomists and cosmologers: "When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is man that You are mindful of him, the son of man that You care for him?" (Psalm 8:3-4) He meets you where you are, including scientists like us :)

Okay, so we cannot see God. I cannot see energy and electrons either. Jesus obviously meant the same thing when He says "The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit." (John 3:8)

Wouldn't it be scary to entrust your entire life to someone I cannot even see? But how different is it from a marriage vow, where I believe and hope that my spouse really will love me till death? How different is it from a child or a friend, who I hope will always be there for me? The relationship is still based on trust (which is another word for faith).

Just because it did not happen before, and just because we cannot perceive it, does not mean it's not true.

In anything else, science holds that statement without question, but when it comes to the issue of God suddenly the barriers are up. Shouldn't we be more objective? Maybe, just maybe, God is true.

We can even make our own experiments if we want...just to test the God hypothesis. Besides, if there really is no God, what have we got to lose? Blaise Pascal himself said this: "Belief is a wise wager. Granted that faith cannot be proved, what harm will come to you if you gamble on its truth and it proves false? If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then, without hesitation, that He exists."

"Come near to God and He will come near to you." (James 4:8)

I do hope that you do :) I'll be praying for you guys. :)

With all the love from a fellow scientist (who you cannot see and whose words you have to decide to believe),



by the way, i hope you can get a copy of Lee Strobel's "The Case for a Creator". Strobel is a former atheist who has a background in law and investigative journalism. Though not a scientist, he was planted firmly on the road to atheism when his science teacher taught evolution. The book would help trace the road "back" to faith :) It's very objective and scientific, critically acclaimed and highly recommended :)

once again, i pray that you will realize that He exists; that you will let Him save you because we cannot do it ourselves; that you will follow Him for His plans are the best. :)

not alone at all

The One who sent Me is with Me;
He has not left me alone,
for I always do what pleases Him.

- John 8:29

the right time

(so this is why i never had a dilemma back in the bad old days...)

To everything
there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven.
- Ecclesiastes 3:1

The right time for Me has not yet come;
for you any time is right.
The world cannot hate you,
but it hates Me because I testify that what it does is evil.
- John 7:6-7

too much evil in this world?

Many are asking, "Who can show us any good?"
Let the light of Your face shine on us, O LORD.
- Psalm 4:6

don't be so smug...

Have you no wish for others to be saved?
Then you are not saved yourself. Be sure of that.
- Charles Spurgeon

Stay Saved

Stay Saved
by Canton Jones

I'm a stay saved
I'm a stay saved

I'm a stay saved, even though I'm hot as fire I'm a love ya anyhow

I'm a stay saved

I'm a stay saved

I'm a stay saved, even though I'm hot as fire I'm a love ya anyhow

I'm a stay saved

Excuse me mister
Me and my wife was in front of the line here sir

I don't think it's right if I allow you to skip me

I just wanna keep peace

Get some tickets to the movie

I'm tryna be discrete sir, it's really not deep sir

We all goin' get a seat sir and we all goin eat sir

So please can you calm down

Homie put your arm down

I don't want a showdown, but it's bout to go down

It's a nice night why we just can't act right?

Just because I'm Christ-like
Doesn't mean I'm nice like
I'm goin be the bigger man and let you bump me
Coz' it's 8 of ya'll and ya'll probably goin jump me

And have me lookin' crazy and all in front of my company mean

I'm not goin play the fool

Chillin' is the right move

Let me think I got a choice to make

Go to jail, go to hell or stay saved
Baby put the mase away

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'
I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start cussin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start bustin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

I ordered a # 9 you gave me a #4
You forgot to super size and forgot my apple pie

So miss if you'd be so kind

I'm sorta pressed for time

Will you take this # 4 and switch it with a #9

Go to the back of the line

Ma'am you got me messed up

I have an important meetin why you think I'm dressed up

Gater shoes and vest up if I go back I'll be late

Ma'am if you could just give me a refund that will be so great

What you 'bout to go on break?

Can I get my money first

You ain't gotta get loud and miss you ain't gotta curse

Can I see the manager before this thing gets any worse

Oh you the manager well I don't want this sandwich here

I don't want the money either I just think I'll walk away

Before I start fussin' back say somethin' I dont wanna say

Gotta stay prayed up 'coz people will test you

She still fussin' see you later God Bless You

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start cussin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start bustin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

I'm a stay saved

When I'm driving on 285 and somebody cut me off and flip me the bird

Im' a stay saved

When I'm playin' ball and they foulin' ya'll and I hit the floor get up don't say a word

I'm a stay saved

When I'm walkin' through the mall with my wife and somebody still attemptin' to catch her eye

I'm a stay saved

When I go to the refrigerator and somebody done ate my sweet potato pie

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start cussin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start fussin'

I'm a stay saved ain't goin' start bustin'

I'm a stay saved even though I'm hot as fire I'm goin' love you anyhow

You raise me up :)

You Raise Me Up
by Josh Groban

When i am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, i am still and wait here in the silence,
Until You come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so i can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
i am strong, when i am on your shoulders;
You raise me up... To more than i can be.

You raise me up, so i can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
i am strong, when i am on your shoulders;
You raise me up... To more than I can be.

You raise me up, so i can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
i am strong, when i am on your shoulders;
You raise me up... To more than i can be.

You raise me up, so i can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
i am strong, when i am on your shoulders;
You raise me up... To more than i can be.

You raise me up... To more than i can be.

obey = fully know + free + firm - foolish

We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands.
- 1 John 2:3

But if anyone obeys His word, God's love is truly made complete in him.
- 1 John 2:5

To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said, "If you hold on to My teaching, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
- John 8:31-32

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash."
- Matthew 7:24-27

December 10, 2006

how can i know God better?

We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands. =)

- 1 John 2:3

But if anyone obeys His word, God's love is truly made complete in him.

- 1 John 2:5

November 28, 2006

a defense with as much objectivity and compassion as possible

(this was a comment i left here. interestingly i made a mistake in linking to this blog. though any name search would link here, i'm taking that mistake as divine wisdom, and protection :) )

hi :) i'm a member of Every Nation, or Victory Christian Fellowship here in the Philippines. i was reading several of your blog entries on Every Nation.

i'm just wondering, have you actually read the so-called purple book? i have a copy that i can scan and send to you, though i think it wouldn't be too hard for you to get one within your area.

just a suggestion, in an attempt to be more fair and objective. :) why not present all sides before reaching a conclusion as to which seems correct or best?

if i were a reader with no other information regarding Every Nation except for your blog entries, i would think that there's something kooky or creepy or voodoo-like about the organization, specifically (esp. in this entry) about the purple book.

but being a church member of Every Nation for three years now, i can personally say it's not as you perceive or express it to be :)

regarding the purple book, it systematically tackles issues like salvation, forgiveness, and the Holy Spirit by explaining and quoting the Bible. the quotes are available in all other versions and translations of the Bible. the explanations sometimes "connect-the-dots" between the verses, and other times sound so revolutionary (especially for those who have never read the Bible before). but the explanations are consistent with the views of other Bible-based churches.

that purple book, Biblical Foundations, is actually preceded by another (interestingly also purple) book One2One, for individual discipling. actually the first chapter of both books is just the same as the Four Spiritual Laws of Campus Crusade for Christ, the evangelistic steps by Catholic preachers, and so on.

actually, i don't need the purple book! and mind you, this statement is not 'an illusion of free will' or something they told me to say :) i really don't need any book save the Bible itself. the rest, including the purple discipleship books, popular Christian books like the Purpose-Driven Life and even Chronicles of Narnia, are very helpful guides along the way, for me and for whoever i'm sharing the Bible to :) (again, especially for those who've never read the Bible before and may be intimidated by me running through one verse to another in a thick strange book) but it's not the object or means of cult worship that someone reading your writing might perceive it to be :)

i and my fellow church members have never been ordered to memorize One2One, Biblical Foundations or any other Every Nation material. to be honest, i don't even memorize Bible quotes :)

i'm genuinely concerned about the reports of abuse, breakdown and pressure suffered or inflicted upon EN members. but perhaps this is where we could draw the line between church doctrine and individual views. is it really Every Nation's wrongdoing, or Rice Broocks'? i'm not whitewashing or justifying any crime, but because that case does not happen often, is it not more reasonable to think that those cases are due to individual extremism?

you said Broocks was involved three times or more, but how many years has EN been in existence? and for every day of that 12 years, how many people are prone to being abused, pressured etc. but have not? statistically speaking, that is quite negligible. in contrast, how many people involved with EN are genuinely transformed and sincerely living for Christ?

if we look at individual acts which are obviously misled, mistaken or grossly wrong, it would be quite unfair to subscribe it to the head leader, especially to the leader of thousands (i don't know exactly how many, tens or hundreds). again, statistically speaking, the individual cases would be anomalous and negligible. they don't count. (please see here) it would be a different matter if, of all the EN churches in different nations, only "three or more" lived a God-fearing, sober lifestyle: now that is cause for concern.

please don't think that i want to minimize anybody's grief or suffering. but i'll compare this to me sharing to my Catholic friends: why did i not stay Catholic? if i start listing all the abuses of Catholic priests, they can easily counter with all the abuses of Christian pastors. yes, they exist. but are these faults REPRESENTATIVE of the churches they belong to? do they represent the bulk of a church's doctrines, or do they represent the majority of a church's members? if neither, then what's the point? we have to look at the beliefs, which are not always seen in the life and actions of the believers.

when "The Da Vinci Code" was published and eventually turned into a movie, i was worried. actually, many of my Christian friends said that there's nothing to worry about because it will only shake those who have weak faith. but that's my point exactly. i fear that many people will see it, and see the 'inconsistencies' Dan Brown portrayed (which scholars and experts -- Christian or not -- united in disagreeing with Brown), and use what they see as an excuse to not believe.

i fear that because Da Vinci was released just a few months after i gave my life to Christ. i fear that because i know my own self; that if i hadn't truly, personally, deeply encountered God shortly before Da Vinci, i might be saying, "oh, so Jesus wasn't really God, so i'm not going to be moral and all that stuff Jesus said, because he doesn't have the authority to command me to be good, and he himself wasn't". i fear that for many other people out there, Da Vinci has been presented as the new excuse. (which, by the way, is a work of fiction, as opposed to religion-based sins which sad to say do exist.)

there has been a lot of religious controversy lately, and when has there not been any? religion hints at man's greatest longing: to know and be known, to love and be loved by the One who created Him. :) it speaks to man's innermost being and his very existence. hence the heat. sadly, the very same religion- and faith-based divisions may devolve into representatives of who God is not. it's easy to see all the infighting, the misunderstanding, the abuse, and yes, the killings, and conclude that there is no God.

what about you, sir? you may not even realize it yet, but perhaps you are hiding behind excuses.

you are obviously more experienced and knowledgeable when it comes to current affairs especially with regards to religion. but i wonder if you have ever dug deeper into your news subjects. just as there is a bigger story behind closed doors than the political personalities we see, perhaps there is a deeper truth beyond the religious leaders we hear about.

maybe there really is a God; maybe he really did take on the form of a man; maybe he really did accept the punishment meant for us and our sins; maybe his kingdom really is expanding even today, until every one gets a chance to accept or deny him.

maybe his followers would stray a little, maybe grossly disobey him, even while still carrying his name.

maybe it's time to focus on the message, and the one who sent it, instead of the all-too-human messengers (whose basic tenet of faith anyway, is, all have sinned and need a Savior).

i sincerely pray that you will truly, deeply, personally be encountered by God this very day, even as you read this.

"And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved..." - Joel 2:32a

"...God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men — the testimony given in its proper time." - 1 Timothy 2:3-6

God bless you and be with you, Mr. Bartholomew. i will continue praying for you. :)

November 26, 2006

hillsong in manila, 2: after dreaming, DO IT!

"DO IT!"

it sounds so simple but my friends and i really felt renewed, re-energized, and just raring to do what God is telling us in our respective lives :D

meggy says: "
good night Lord! i luuuvvv yah more than life! and i'll DO IT! the dream has been reawakened."

actually, for me, embarrassing though it may be, God is again reminding me to continue my spiritual housecleaning :) as in, what i was supposed to do last nov (or late oct) 2004.

sorry it took so long God...

thank You for again giving me the dignity to say it first (what needs to be done) before You confirm it with Your word.

sorry for using my past spiritual-freedom-so-great-i-thought-i-was-going-to-die-because-my-soul's-chains-were-loosed experience as a lame excuse that i don't need any housecleaning anymore. actually, if i had such an unbelievable milestone in my life when i still coddled some false gods, WHAT MORE when i totally get rid of everything that's hindering my walk with God?

it's so ironic that my favorite prophet is Elijah...and that i really love what he said:

"How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal is God, follow him." --- 1 Kings 18:21

it's SO ironic because all this time i've been switching between God and self :( all the while completely embracing that above verse. (time to boink my head once again, figuratively only!....)

i was privileged to listen to preacher T. D. Jakes this early morning. He said the devil is not going to tempt us with what we're not supposed to have --- he is going to tempt us with what we're going to get anyway, but distorting the process (and the timing?)...satan is going to say, "this is your last chance," or "this is the only way," when in fact we simply have to believe that God is going to bless us, His children, with what we want and so much more.

i'm going to continue my spiritual housecleaning now after this blog entry :) i know it's the right thing to do; to throw away my false dead goddesses so i can fully embrace God. the. living. true. God.

but thanks to Pastor Jakes' preaching, not only is this the right thing to do, it's also something i WANT to do.

because i know that there is a proper process and order and timing to everything.

because i know one dream of mine is not going to happen today or tomorrow. but i claim that it will, and i believe that it will. just not now :)

because the enemy is tempting me with the same dream that i will be grasping anyway. but i choose to live according to God's will, His purposes for others as well as for me.

my heart is not deceived. my dream will come to pass. :)

but since it's not now, i'm not going to waste my time and effort dwelling and worrying on something that will happen anyway.

and i'm going to declutter so i can focus more clearly on GOD.

He has other purposes for me right now.

It is His will that i act now.

i also have dreams being enacted into reality now.

and i'm going to finish the rest of my spiritual housecleaning, NOW.


i will follow You all day

All Day
by Hillsong

I don't care what they say about me

It's alright, alright

I don't care they think about me

It's alright, they'll get it one day

I love You, I'll follow You
You are my, my life
I will read my Bible and pray
I will follow You all day

I don't care what it costs anymore
Cos' You gave it all and I'm following You

I don't care what it takes anymore

No matter what happens I'm going Your way

I love You, I'll follow You
You are my, my life

I will read my Bible and pray

I will follow You all day

All day

All day now

All day

I don't care what they say about me
It's alright, alright

I don't care they think about me

It's alright, they'll get it one day

I love You, I'll follow You
You are my, my life

I will read my Bible and pray

I will follow You all day

All day

All day now

All day

Anyone around can see
just how good You've been to me

For all my friends that don't know You

I pray that You would save them too

All day
All day now

All day

dream for HIM

Some of you, God is telling to keep dreaming.

For others, He's telling you to dream for the first time.

For some, He's telling you to dream again.


(some powerful preaching in Hillsong concert in Manila :) )


So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man.

Then the man said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.”

But Jacob replied, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.

The man asked him, “What is your name?”

“Jacob,” he answered.

Then the man answered, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel (meaning “he struggles with God” --- teci), because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome.

Jacob said, “Please tell me your name.”

But he replied, “Why do you ask my name?” Then he blessed him there.

So Jacob called the place Peniel (meaning “face of God” --- teci), saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.”
--- Genesis 32:24-30

i don’t know if i’ve overcome =) Though i have definitely struggled with men and women, seeking to bring God’s Truth while showing God’s Love (never an easy task, which is why it should be God working through me instead of my ego, my ideas and my personality).

In wrestling with God, we all know who’s more powerful =) Maybe i don’t even need to overcome him. =) It’s just that i still have many issues and questions, problems and failures, and what better way to confront them than to bring them before God Himself =) i don’t need to assert my way over His (assuming that were even possible) (wait; it is possible; He answers our prayers and grants our requests but still, that’s all part of “His way”). i just need to talk to Him and be reassured why things have to be as they are.

Maybe i'll lose, but that’s ok; He is, after all, Lord Almighty and i'm honored He even gave me the dignity of confronting Him face to face. Maybe i'll win; then i'll realize sometimes “struggling with God” means He was on my side the entire time.


When the LORD began to speak to Hosea, the LORD said to him, “Go, take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the LORD.
--- Hosea 1:2

For a long time i was against this particular couple because i felt the sheer unfairness of it all --- and also because i had an agenda of my own (tsk, tsk, really wrong of me). Anyway, i kept on bombarding God with “Why?!?!” until He (gently as always) simply said, “Hosea”.

Hosea and Gomer’s marriage literally, physically reflected God’s (terribly one-sided) love for Israel. Basically, God loved Israel to overflowing, keeping His part of their promise to one another (Exodus 24:3-8) despite Israel’s constant unfaithfulness in worshipping other gods. God is love (1 John 4:16) --- and true enough, it has gone beyond rationality, beyond common sense. “Why would i love someone who doesn’t love me back?” my selfishness would assert. But realizing that i'm the unfaithful one, the one being loved despite all reasons to the contrary; and that it’s God Almighty, Creator and Ruler of All, that’s seeking to bring me back to Himself…wow. That revelation, directly connected to my personal circumstances at the time, immediately stopped all my questions in mid-sentence.


i find David very…interesting. Paradoxical. Here he was, “a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22)”, yet he was an adulterer and a murderer. Unfaithful. Killer. Tsk, tsk, goes my self-righteousness clicking its tongue. What he did was so wrong, i constantly repeated to myself.

There was a Benjamite, a man of standing…he had a son named Saul, an impressive young man without equal among the Israelites --- a head taller than any of the others…Samuel said to the people, “Do you see the man the LORD has chosen? There is no one like him among all the people.” Then the people shouted, “Long live the king!”
--- 1 Samuel 9:1, 2, 10:24

One of our pastors mentioned that the Israelites immediately welcomed Saul as king because he was so tall and handsome. Ouch, ouch, ouch! i suddenly realized how shallow i was. (Well, i've been shallow my whole life, but God still has to spell it out for me to finally get it. =) )

For those not familiar with the story in 1 Samuel, Saul was the first king of Israel. The people wanted to have a king like the other nations around them. (Talk about not getting it! Their king was GOD already! It was the other nations that should be envying them!!) Saul’s physical attractiveness was a big plus. And yet he was eventually disgraced because he did things His own way --- even with the best of intentions --- instead of obeying God’s clear instructions. 1 Samuel 15 narrates the tragic turning point of how Saul was rejected as king.

Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance is like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the LORD,
He has rejected you as king.
--- 1 Samuel 15:22-23

(By the way, i’m still being convicted by all these words, so much that in the midst of writing i destroyed the CD’s of pirated Christian songs i copied just days ago, and i finally resolved to destroy the (original) comics i recently bought as well as my old (pirated) DVD’s of practically all the X-Men comics ever printed. (The ancient Hebrew word corresponding to “destroy” actually refers to offering to the Lord irrevocably --- no turning back! --- which often meant physically destroying.) No more giving/lending to friends --- they might stumble in sin just as i have, and/or i can always get/borrow back from them and stumble all over again; no more considering selling for the sake of charity --- there would be a considerable amount of time that the comics are still with me, and again i might make someone stumble, not to mention i can also be tempted to not give the income to charity; no more justifying that i'm already ok --- yes, i'm forgiven, yes, i'm saved, but i'm still prone to temptation and the comics approach is already a “tried and tested” weak area for me.)

Enough of good intentions and mere shallow pretensions in going through the motions of obeying God. Am i really, from my heart of hearts going outward to words and deeds, seeking and following Him?

Here’s where David comes in. Actually, he didn’t “come in” at first; his own father overlooked him in having David’s brothers appear before Samuel-anointer-of-kings (1 Samuel 16:5-13). But God reminded Samuel then as He reminds me now: “The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7b) (Ok, Lord! Help me look at the heart too! --- teci)

David was a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22). He sought the Lord in matters big (what to do with the ark of God, 2 Samuel 7) and small (which town to go to, in 2 Samuel 2:1). Even when he sinned gravely, affecting many including the generations after him, his first act of repentance and regret was towards God. Did he even apologize to anyone else? “Against You, You only, have I sinned and done what is evil in Your sight.” (Psalm 51:4a)

God looks at the heart. He is not after a superficial obedience of His rules, but a sincere commitment to follow His ways.


i have come to realize how much i was like the nation of Israel --- superficial, unfaithful, selfishly pestering God until He gives out His blessing. Add to all these their shortsightedness in their exodus from Egypt, where they whined about trivial things right after witnessing the plagues and crossing a sea.

It’s a realization that’s humbling and humiliating. Fortunately, He can handle all of it --- all of us --- and He loves us despite ourselves. Wow. Moreover, He enables us to be perfect as He is perfect. How hope-filled is that!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is but part of the ongoing saga that is the love story between me and my God.


hillsong in manila, 1: act NOW!

Justice delayed is justice denied. --- William Gladstone, British politician

Obedience delayed is….disobedience! --- teci (obeying after 25 months)

JUST DO IT! --- youth pastor in Hillsong Manila concert


November 19, 2006

teci's thesis episode 16: i just realized something.

May 6, 2006 – 11:43 pm

Listening to switchfoot’s “this is your life” while doing my thesis.

God :)

When I was younger, THIS was what I wanted to do.

THIS was who I wanted to be.

THIS is who I need to be.

So thanks po :) even though I’m attacked from all sides, condemned, and I let myself be put down…

Thanks for reminding me :)