July 27, 2011

What Men Live By

Read "What Men Live By" by Leo Tolstoy. (Thanks Yoonhee for the recommendation. :) )

And God said: 'Go... and learn three truths: Learn 
What dwells in man, 
What is not given to man, and
What men live by. 

"I knew before that God gave life to men and desires that they
should live; now I understood more than that.

"I understood that God does not wish men to live apart, and
therefore he does not reveal to them what each one needs for
himself; but he wishes them to live united, and therefore reveals to
each of them what is necessary for all.

"I have now understood that though it seems to men that they live by
care for themselves, in truth it is love alone by which they live.
He who has love, is in God, and God is in him, for God is love."

July 25, 2011

July 23, 2011

This is the day.

And in that moment she realizes,
“This is the day when the promise of God comes true.”
(From the Mars Hill Church blog.)

Tomorrow I'll celebrate my birthday
Monday marks the first day of the 30th year of my life

And I'm celebrating because
     my priorities have shifted
     my direction has become clearer
     my will is becoming more submitted to His

"He must become greater, I must become less."
     - John the Baptist

That is my birthday wish, and I am excited
Because as long as I tag along for the ride,
I get to live for Him (the best possible life)
and He is glorified.

July 15, 2011

Just speak His Word

The Prince of Peace did not come to bring peace
but a sword
Either you're for Him or against Him
Either you're against Him or for Him
There is no middle way

God says,

"There will be times when people will be hurt
Just speak My Word
That is enough."

His Word is His Sword
Double-edged, because both messenger and receiver are fallen
We all realize how far we are from The Holy of Holies
But we all have a choice too
To recognize how far He's come, how much He's done, and let Him save us
Or to make the rescue attempt ourselves (good luck)
Or to say we don't need a hero, thank you very much

When the Sword falls and divides
flesh from flesh and soul from Spirit
on which side will you be?

Seek what they sought.

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise.
Seek what they sought.
- Matsuo Basho

Pursue God, not the godly.
- Teci Pulido :)

Don't get close to me, get close to God.
- bumper sticker :)

I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed them to me, but he said to me, "You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God."
- John the apostle, Revelation 22:8-9

July 14, 2011

He creates no pests

Have you ever wondered why God created pests like *that person*? Well, how about pests in general? ThinkChristian gives an insightful look at a child's question: "Why did God create mosquitoes?"

Who wants a mouse in their house? (Sorry Mickey.) From here. 

1. Well, who decides what is a pest anyway?

2. Whatever may be a pest to me may be a precious in His sight, a unique special creation.

3. I must admit the many times I was (am) a pest to God and to people... Thank God He hasn't sprayed divine insecticide (yet) in anger and frustration. Thank God He has not given up on me yet.

4. He can turn pests into precious children. Nay, that's what He has always intended for us to be, if we just continue to let Him do His work in us.

5. Makes it *much* easier to deal with the pests in your life, eh?

That the deaf may hear: The Gospel in sign language

Are there people around you who know THE most important life-changing news, yet are muted by fear or laziness? 

What about those who become too deafened by the world's pressures to stop and listen?

Hearing-impaired people have an additional difficulty: the lack of Christians willing to share the Gospel in "their" language, sign. The deaf are one of the largest people groups not yet "reached" by Christianity.

Hoping many hearing-impaired brothers and sisters get to "hear" this :)
An FSL* Fellowship is held regularly every second Sunday of the month
at Higher Rock Christian Church, 3/F Esna Bldg., Timog Ave., Quezon City. The next fellowship will be on Aug 14 (Sun), 1-3 PM.

Everyone is welcome to join, help out, and invite our deaf loved ones to finally "hear" and receive God's Good News, which is for everyone indeed. God bless you. :)

*FSL = Filipino Sign Language
(Thanks to Ken Bulahan for the video and Cyril Sadia for the link.)

July 12, 2011

When vision is given, action will follow

If you want to build a ship don't herd people together to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.
- Antoine de Saint-Exupery, "Wisdom of the Sands"

Pursue wisdom itself.

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise.
Seek what they sought.
- Matsuo Basho

Natural science and supernatural God

"The scientific explanation for human origins does not admit a supreme being as the creator of life and humans. This is not a rejection or denial of God, merely an acceptance of the limitations of science. By its very nature, science is unable to deal with a supernatural being. Science deals only with nature, with the materials, processes, and life forms of the natural world. God is, by definition, beyond the investigative powers of science."
-  George D. Brown, Jr., "Human Evolution"

July 9, 2011

Empty to Full: Sister Teci

I find it ironic --- but in a funny way, not-cynical-but-more-of-tongue-in-cheek
that I'm more of a nun now that I'm not a Catholic.

Nuns take vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience.
And my complete name is Maria Teresa = Mother Teresa ;p

And yes, in my past life of godlessness, I never planned on becoming what I am now.
Truly it is His plans and purposes that prevail.

"Throw off everything that hinders..."
In my weak state, I cannot handle romance, money, and my own will (yet)
(But I'm learning!)
And God literally knows what I need to let go of
so I can hang on to Him more
Empty-handed, so I can be full(er)

I'm seeing the value once again of some practices
even those of the Catholic faith, which I left
But in the same way,
again I ask my Catholic brothers and sisters
(and everyone else)
to let go of whatever hinders

Empty hands
Full life :)

All good things come from Him,
and He redeems all things
If there is something hindering you from following God,
set it free and cling to Him
But if obeying Him means standing firm or pursuing something,
then go...  and be filled with more of Himself :)

Ordinary? No such thing.

I believe every one of us can be more EXTRA than ORDINARY. ♥

I believe we all start as seeds that have the ability to grow
But we also have the ability to choose to grow (or not)

If we abide in the Tree of Life
Our source, our literal "roots"
If we recognize our origins
We will determine --- and fulfill --- our respective destinies.

July 3, 2011

That's why we call it "change".

We have a tendency to look for flaws in others... especially if those others are associated with a so-called perfect God.

When something goes wrong (and it will), we find ourselves saying, "Well, well, well... not so holy/good/righteous/perfect (etc.) now, are we? Tsk, tsk..." --- in sinister sneering tones, the condemnation from Satan himself, whose name literally means "enemy".

But should Christians even claim to be perfect? Jesus Himself said, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone." (This passage is further explained here.)

What we follow, we become. The Bible says, we can be transformed more and more into the likeness of God Himself, as we follow Him in Spirit and Truth (the power of the Holy Spirit and the Truth of God's Word).

We don't become gods, with His powers and perfection; rather we become more godly, with His characteristics and character.

There's this common (mis)conception that some people are holier-than-thou: no problems, no fears, no temptations, no sin. Raised on a pedestal impossibly high, the natural tendency is to fall, and the devil laughs.

Yes, we are human, but our God is superhuman:

Following the righteous and holy God means turning away from what is unrighteous and unholy.
  • No hypocrisy --- Yes, sin can be fun but it slowly kills; while living for God can be difficult but is fulfilling and rewarding. If we say God is our God, and we don't follow, isn't that what constitutes hypocrisy?
  • No claims to perfection --- We can only follow Him by His transforming power in us; we can choose to follow, and it gets easier. (The wise man hears God and builds His house of faith on the foundation of obedience.)

That's why Christ is called the Redeemer.

The Cristo Redentor in Brazil. Image from here.

He transforms, He renews, He reclaims the original design.
He forgives, He cleanses, He enables us to draw closer to Him.

We're not perfect. But that's why Christ redeems. That's why we call it "change".

This Cristo Redentor image is from here.

Stress makes His flowers bloom

A typical conversation nowadays:

Person-I-haven't-seen-for-some-time: You're blooming.
Teci: Oh really? But I've been under a lot of stress lately.

All glory to the God who gives us everything we need... plus plus. :)

July 1, 2011

A student's sure answer

A physics major talks about being uncertain (no more) in Christ. (We belong to the same research laboratory and the same local church.)

We finally have a way and right to be certain - no more estimation. We don’t have to estimate whether we have done enough good works to earn ourselves a spot in heaven. We don’t have to worry ourselves to death on whether we’ve believed in Him enough for Him to spare us the pain of hell. Why, because the job is already done. Our sins have been paid at a price (Yes, you’re a sinner and so am I.) Don't get me wrong, there are things that we do have to trust Him for - things in our life that we still do not see. But God will never forsake us. And the one thing that we cannot be uncertain of, he made certain for us already.

Keep on discovering and sharing the truth, Haneka :)