June 30, 2011

This is your LIFE.

This is your LIFE.

1. A picture of mysterious origins. ;)

2. This is Your Life by Switchfoot
(See another good video of the song here.)

3. Meant to Live by Switchfoot

Will Power

Let Your will be done.

But also, let me will Your will

Let Your will be mine as well.

Amen. :)

June 29, 2011

I will wait for You

From "I will wait for you" by Janette...ikz:

"I'll stay in my bed
--- alone ---
and write poems about how I will wait for you." :D

"I will no longer get weighted down...
for my biological clock
when I serve the Author of Time!"

"To my Father...
I desire Your will above mine...
and I will always wait for You Lord." ♥

See Mary's blog for the complete transcribed poem.
Thanks to Cathy for sending me this. :)

June 28, 2011

God's love is patient

How long, O God, is the foe to scoff?
     Is the enemy to revile your name forever?
Why do you hold back your hand, your right hand?
     Take it from the fold of your garment and destroy them!
Yet God my King is from of old,
     working salvation in the midst of the earth.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness,
but is patient toward you,
not wishing that any should perish,
but that all should reach repentance.
- 2 Peter 3:9

Revenge vs. Forgiveness

Revenge is bitter.
Forgiveness is divine.

Got bitter friends?

Be a better friend to your bitter friends. :)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our affliction,
so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction,
with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings,
so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.
- 2 Corinthians 1:3-5

No more frettin'

I keep on forgettin'
That I shouldn't be frettin'
'Coz I already know the (awesome) ending

June 26, 2011

Revived; Single-minded. :)

The apostle James tells it like it is. He starts his letter with:

Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.

Charles Swindoll elaborates on this in his "The Quest for Character" (thanks to Andy for the recommendation):

I suggest we take this passage literally. "Unstable" means unstable. "Driven and tossed" means driven and tossed. Not receiving "anything" means just that. God deliberately holds back when the double-minded person prays. I call that serious.

How much better to be single-minded! No mumbo-jumbo. No religious phony-baloney. No say-one-thing-but-mean-something-else jive. No pharisaic hypocrisy where words come cheap and externals are sickeningly pious. The single-minded are short on creeds and long on deeds.

They care... really care. They are humble... truly humble. They love... genuinely love. They have character... authentic character. 

Mr. Swindoll also includes the following poem (thanks to Nelly for the more reader-friendly format):

Psalm of Single-mindedness
by Joseph Bayly

Lord of reality, make me real
Not plastic, synthetic, pretend phony
An actor playing out his part, hypocrite
I don’t want to keep a prayer list
But to pray
Nor agonise to find your will
But to obey what I already know
To argue theories of inspiration
But submit to your word
I don’t want to explain the difference
Between eros, philos and agape
But to love
I don’t want to sing as if I mean it
I want to mean it
I don’t want to tell it like it is
But to be it, like you want it
I don’t want to think another need me
But I need him, else I’m not complete
I don’t want to tell others how to do it
But to do it
To have to always be right
But admit it when I’m wrong
I don’t want to be a census taker
But an obstetrician
Nor an involved person, a professional
But a friend
I don’t want to be insensitive
But to hurt where other people hurt
Nor to say I know how you feel
But to say GOD knows
And I’ll try, if you’ll be patient with me
And meanwhile I’ll be quiet
I don’t want to scorn the clich├ęs of others
But to mean everything I say
Including this

Truth as fresh as clear living water. I was and am suddenly revived... Matters clearing up... Single-minded. :)

June 24, 2011

Grace + Truth

For the law was given through Moses;
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
- John 1:17

Truth  =>  Humility
Humility  -  Humiliation  =  Grace

Truth - Grace  =  Wrath
Grace - Truth  =  Ignorance

Grace + Truth  <=  JESUS

Be true to your song

Let me remember my song in the night;
let me meditate in my heart.
(Psalm 77:6)

Leave me alone with my song
by Colin Rowe

When there's meaning in the music,
And music in the words,
A song can set the heart at rest
It need not even be the best
Of songs.
As long as it belongs to you alone.

A song is all you need, boy,
The rest is for the birds,
But all the birds have songs of their own
From the highest and mightiest, holiest bird
To the shiest and grubbiest lowliest bird
Each has his own inner song
And that's why I know it's all wrong
That I'm walking away from the song
That is mine ---

I bought  "Tell No Man" by Adela Rogers St. Johns at a secondhand store, not knowing how much it would resonate in my life as a Christ-follower --- then, as a new believer, and now, as a tired person in the world. 
The song above is from a fictional character in a fictional story, but how much can you and I relate? Will we conform to the world and end up as mere shadows and echoes... or will we be true to who we are --- who He destined us to be? 

I choose Your kingdom


I don't want to be wise in my own eyes.
     I want Your wisdom.

I don't want to judge others and be judged in the same way.
     I want Your grace.

I don't want to earn what I can't afford anyway.
     I want Your love.

Such mindsets that come from the world, I denounce
     I want Your kingdom.

My life; His story

It's hard to compare, even dangerous.
Because there are different callings, but One Source.

Run your own race; live your own life to the full.
HE is its Author and its Finisher.

The Obvious Post

'Obvious,' a teacher of mine said
In our field, the term is near derogatory
It is considered a waste of time pointing out what we all know to be true

But if such a thing is true, and obvious even,
     how come in that person's life
     it's not obvious, but hidden
     perhaps, forgotten

And so I resolve to keep on stating the obvious
     to people who agree with their heads and stop there

I will speak the obvious
     until its truth is seen
     not just in ideals but in actions

The Reward is in the Choice

God is perfectly able to do anything and everything.

It's up to us if we want to join
     and how much of Him we want
     and how much of ourselves we give

Indeed, we can choose
     how much of the rewards (or punishment) we like
     although life without Him is punishment in itself
     and life with Him is its own reward

The tension is here

Welcome to resistance
The tension is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between how it is and how it should be
I dare you to MOVE
- Switchfoot

A true friend says what is true

Whoever says to the wicked, "You are in the right,"
     will be cursed by peoples, abhorred by nations,
but those who rebuke the wicked will have delight,
     and a good blessing will come upon them.
- Proverbs 24:24-25

Whoever gives an honest answer kisses the lips.
- Proverbs 24:26

Move it!

A little sleep, a little slumber,
     a little folding of the hands to rest,
and poverty will come upon you like a robber,
     and want like an armed man.
- Proverbs 24:33-34

False bravado

Surely He scorns the scornful,
     but gives grace to the humble.

- Proverbs 3:34

There are people who act brave and strong
     ... but only in groups
     ... but only towards those who can't or won't fight back

There are people who talk loud and confident
     ... about things they know are lies
     ... about others' faults, instead of facing their own

May you find strength to do what's really brave
     ... to be honest to admit what you have done wrong
     ... to be true to what you know is right
     ... to endure hardship, humiliation, isolation
     ... to take the high road rather than the easy life.

Jesus died on the cross, not because He was weak
     but because He can handle the lies, the pain, and death itself
     all the way to Resurrection Day

May you find real strength when you lean on Him.

For I do not do the good I want,
but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.
Now if I do what I do not want,
it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.
Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?

Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!
- Romans 7:19-20, 24-25

But why doesn't that happen to *me*?

In the Bible, or perhaps on TV, or movies, or from your friends, you'd hear of awesome miracles, superhuman tests, or the Holy of Holies or His angels personally interfering in the affairs of man.

"But how come those things don't happen to me?"

Let's make do with what we have;
Let's act on what we do know.

Let's start with the basics. The Bible says spiritual infants need "pure spiritual milk".

The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.
- Deuteronomy 29:29

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
- 2 Timothy 3:16-17

Following God, walking with Him... every step is amazing. We get transformed "from glory to glory", growing to be "more like Christ" as we go along. Just enjoy the ride, relish the process. The wonderful God will do wonderful things with the life yielded to Him. :)

Good Job Passing the Test

Too much suffering? The unfairness of it all? Found something good only to see it fade away?

Naked I came from my mother's womb,
and naked shall I return.
The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away;
blessed be the name of the LORD.
- Job 1:21

Shall we receive good from God,
and shall we not receive evil?
- Job 2:10b

The commentary of my ESV Bible says that the book of Job contains:
- God's loving sovereignty
- the supremacy of divine wisdom over human wisdom
- Believing that God is good despite the apparent evidence to the contrary, Job rested in faith alone.
- I know that my Redeemer lives (Job 19:25).

Centuries after Job prevailed over his test of faith, the apostle James explains:

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.
Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God," for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.
Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

- James 1:12-17

Heart guarded, eyes forward, feet straight

Keep your heart with all vigilance,
     for from it flow the springs of life.
Put away from you crooked speech,
     and put devious talk far from you.
Let your eyes look directly forward,
     and your gaze be straight before you.
Make level the path of your feet;
     then all your ways will be sure.
Do not swerve to the right or to the left;
     turn your foot away from evil.
- Proverbs 4:23-27

For the Insecure

May you find security in the One who made you
     the All-Knowing, All-Powerful, All-Good God

May you recognize your gifts
     that are different from theirs
     but are equally special
     and are equally important

May you find joy in the path He has laid out for you

May your faith in Him increase in good and in bad times

May you find His peace
     for He is with you
     and that's all that matters

May you realize that
     He has already accepted you
     He has already forgiven
     and He is already transforming

In the Mighty Name of Jesus
     Insecurities be gone!
     Be healed!

And may you do unto others
     what God has done unto you.


Teci is called to obedience

If I say God is real
     and even that He talks to me
     then why am I so reluctant to follow?

If I say that He is wiser
     then why am I still relying
     on my reason, sense, and judgment?

If I talk about faith
     then why don't I act on it?

Obey not out of fear of hell and other consequences
     obey not to fulfill an obligation

But obey simply out of trust
     that He knows best
     and that He is worthy of my obedience

Light Shines Into Darkness

But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn,
     which shines brighter and brighter until full day.
The way of the wicked is like deep darkness;
     they do not know over what they stumble.
(Proverbs 4:18-19)

Light shines into the darkness
not the other way around.

"The kingdom of heaven is advancing."
It is heaven on the offensive
"The gates of hell will not overcome it."
It is hell being defeated

We are on the attack
Forceful men advancing
Aslan on the move

Be not afraid to live and shine. :)
(As a blogger, this means less drafts and notes, and more posts. :D )

You are the light of the world.
A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.
Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand,
and it gives light to all in the house.
In the same way, let your light shine before others,
so that they may see your good works
and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
(Matthew 5:14-16)

June 21, 2011

Straighten out those A's

    ‎"The [general weighted average] is just a measure of being a good student. But does that make you a good person? Does that make you a productive member of society?... It’s not fair to (focus so much on) points... I kind of just forgot it because real life is different. That’s the UP spirit: not just brains, but also a big heart and the hand to serve." - Dr. Gert Gwendale Baron, GWA 1.03 (where perfect GWA = 1). From this article.

It doesn't matter if you got straight A's in school.
Life is what happens outside the classroom.

So what if your head is filled with facts?
Wisdom is making good use of what you know
     --- heck, it's making good use even when you don't know

Has your knowledge guided you in improving your life,
     and those of others, even?
And by "improvement", I don't mean getting rich
     --- we probably all know of people who find more fulfillment
     in giving money than in receiving

Has your knowledge helped you beyond inflating your ego,
     or have you realized that there's no end to erecting that tower
     of pride to the high heavens,
     and that even if you win the rat race
     you're still a rat

Straight A's could still lead to crooked living
     (Believe me, I've seen, and I know)

It's one thing to know the right thing and another to do it
     If you're like this
     You probably know this but aren't doing anything about it

Perhaps like Socrates, you only know that you don't know
     and that doesn't help much

If I may just share
     "The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the LORD,"
     where fear means reverence and respect
     for the One who knows all
     for the One who actually knows better than you or me
If there's one thing I know that works, it's this
     Perhaps you know too, or not, or have forgotten

Give Him a try
Test His judgments against yours
And you just might learn something new.

Hurt or Heal?

Hurt people hurt people,
as our pastor would say,
but loved people can love people.

Do we add to the good
or to the evil in this world?

Those who can do better
really do have a responsibility to do so.

To those who don't know the difference, or don't care,
     may you encounter His love and grace
     may His presence fill your being
     may you let Him heal your hurts

June 19, 2011

Father's forgiveness

It is much easier to feel a mother's love than that of a father.

But whether one's father has been abusive or absent,
we are called by our Heavenly Father to forgive,
as He Himself has forgiven us.

May we all have a meaningful Fathers' Day. :)

Love given freely leads to freedom

"We celebrate these two occasions today, The Solemnity of the Most Blessed Trinity and the 150th Birth Anniversary of Jose P. Rizal. May we remember how these transformed a world because of the conscious choices out of love that were made that gave us our freedom in this world and in eternity."

Read the entire article here:
Love–not a feeling, but a conscious choice
By: Fr. Tito Caluag
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Sunday, June 19th, 2011

Love Chain Reaction

Love yourself and others will do the same
Let God love you completely, perfectly, unconditionally,
... and you can do the same.

How much for the heart?

If a man offered for love
all the wealth of his house,
it would be utterly despised.
- Song of Solomon 8:7

The person, not the package

Jesus loved the rich young man.
Not his riches.
Not his talents, which could be of great use to the kingdom
Not his credentials, his connections,
nor power nor possessions.

Jesus loved him.
But he loved his riches.

And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him,
"You lack one thing:
go, sell all that you have and give to the poor,
and you will have treasure in heaven,
and come, follow Me."
Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful,
for he had great possessions.
(Mark 10:21-22)

Another of the disciples said to Him,
"Lord, let me first go and bury my father."
And Jesus said to him,
"Follow Me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead."
(Matthew 8:21-22)

Who --- or what --- do we love the most?

Nothing to prove, Nothing to lose

Lifehouse has this ability to express a deeper kind of love --- love for God, love from God, and love for others that can only be given by God.

This song is one of my favorites --- a modern classic that I hope would be played during my own wedding someday (long before I learned that they themselves called it the wedding song of the year and released a longer wedding track).

But because I am more of a lyrics person, I've always thought this particular song is talking to God, not a person:
(1) After singing to "you" for most of the song, "she" is suddenly mentioned.
(2) It is God who saves. Nothing to do, Nothing to lose, Nothing to prove.

Be blessed with "You and Me".

June 18, 2011

Listen to your father...

Listen to your father who gave you life.
(Proverbs 23:22a)

Happy Fathers' Day! :)

June 17, 2011

The Choice for June 17, 2011

Choose for yourselves this day, He says,
        life or death?
        cursing or blessing?

As for me, right now,
I have finally resolved
to stop listening to the demons
and listen once again to the angels.

No more (false) modesty

From "Tell No Man" by Adela Rogers St. Johns:

My best is not good enough but His is...

There have been days, don't think there haven't, when I've looked at that fellow in the mirror and said to him, Gavin, you smug so-and-so, you look pretty self-righteous to me. Who do you think you are buddy? Then I remember who I am. I am the prodigal son and if you'll reread that bit you'll see that the father wouldn't even listen to the son's self-condemnation and breast-beating, he just welcomed him home...

I remember that of my own self I must admit at once that I can do nothing but that he will always be with me. Then I quit letting any phony inferiority separate me from him...

But I want to make my point first about false modesty. I go back to Acts. You remember when Paul healed the cripple-from-his-mother's-womb at Lystra and the people saw it. So they started yelling that the gods had come down to them in the likeness of men, they brought garlands and oxen to sacrifice to Paul. When Paul heard them he --- it says this in Acts, did you know the whole Book of Acts is just that, the acts Peter and John and Paul and Barnabas and other followers of Jesus did in his name after he was gone? I only just realized this --- anyhow Paul ran among the people crying out to them. We also are men who have the same passions that you do, and preach unto you that you should turn from these vanities unto the living God which made heaven and earth and the sea and all things therein. Well, I faced up to it then, that it is the living God and the Holy Spirit that doeth the works, and not Hank Gavin, and I got back on the track.

June 16, 2011

June 14, 2011

He found me

Feeling lost and insecure? Hurt, frustrated and angry?
In all of this... where was God?

You Found Me
by The Fray

I found God
On the corner of First and Amistad
Where the west
Was all but won
All alone
Smoking his last cigarette
I said, "Where you been?"
He said, "Ask anything."

Where were you
When everything was falling apart?
All my days
Were spent by the telephone
That never rang
And all I needed was a call
That never came
To the corner of First and Amistad

Lost and insecure
You found me, you found me
Lyin' on the floor
Surrounded, surrounded
Why'd you have to wait?
Where were you? Where were you?
Just a little late
You found me, you found me

In the end
Everyone ends up alone
Losing her
The only one who's ever known
Who I am
Who I'm not, who I wanna be
No way to know
How long she will be next to me

Lost and insecure
You found me, you found me
Lyin' on the floor
Surrounded, surrounded
Why'd you have to wait?
Where were you? Where were you?
Just a little late
You found me, you found me

Early morning
The city breaks
I've been callin'
For years and years and years and years
And you never left me no messages
Ya never send me no letters
You got some kinda nerve
Taking all I want

Lost and insecure
You found me, you found me
Lyin' on the floor
Where were you? Where were you?
Lost and insecure
You found me, you found me
Lyin' on the floor
Surrounded, surrounded
Why'd you have to wait?
Where were you? Where were you?
Just a little late
You found me, you found me
Why'd you have to wait?
To find me, to find me

June 8, 2011

Words of Wisdom from Rico Blanco

Rico Blanco makes beautiful, inspiring and uplifting music. Here (and here) are some of his views on life, from Men's Health magazine, January 2011:

Live Life NOW
You don't live forever. We have only so much time in this world, diba? So, when are you going to start doing what you really want to do? If anything, that was my only fear... The year I took off was spent really figuring out what I really wanted to do and telling myself, "The time is now, you have to do it now --- there's no other time to do it."

Say nay to the naysayers
Take care of yourself, concentrate, and your work will speak for itself.

The heart of success
Success is essentially defined by how you manage to sustain doing something that's truly close to your heart.

Know from the inside, share with the outside
There's always something more in you to be discovered, re-discovered, and known. Once you have, share it with the world.

Creativity is from the Creator

From Rico Blanco, Filipino singer-songwriter, a true artist. :) Featured in Men's Health magazine, January 2011:

I think that anything naman that comes out from my creative process is not entirely mine, it's a gift that I'm not the source of. I'm just (like) an instrument. So, I give credit to the Creator for giving me that.

And at the same time, every single piece of art that I absorb, all my experiences, everything that I'm exposed to is a source. If you don't give space for your thoughts because you're thinking of so many other stuff, it would be very hard for creativity to come out. So, I don't really have a process, sometimes (worked for, forced). Sometimes, (it just comes out). Sometimes (if there's no) inspiration, a lot of it is hard work, perseverance. It's sitting down and deciding not to get up off that chair until something comes out. Sometimes, (that's what relaxes me). There are times to relax I work on a song, like some people work on a crossword puzzle to relax.

June 2, 2011

Company motto: Don't be evil!

I read this short Forbes article about the top man of the top company in the world --- admitting a strategic mistake and choosing the higher road in another issue. Well done Sir. May your tribe increase :)

[Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Google] also said that Google had developed facial recognition technology but decided not to pursue it: “We built that technology, and we withheld it. As far as I know it’s the only technology Google has built, and, after looking at it, we decided to stop.” He explained that “I’m very concerned personally about the union of mobile tracking and face recognition,” fearing that it could be used “in a very bad way.”
 Apparently Google’s “Don’t be evil” philosophy—that exact wording is apocryphal, by the way—still obtains. As does: Do make mistakes, but admit them. Which is, all in all, also a very good idea.