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this world is temporary

This song by Carrie Underwood always makes me cry.

“This is my temporary home, it’s not where I belong
Windows and rooms that I’m passing through
This is just a stop on the way to where I’m going
I’m not afraid because I know this is my temporary home.”

It reflects the promise of my Saviour, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” John 14:3

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Posted by on June 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

do not envy

This an excerpt from Joe Rigney’s post in the Desiring God blog. The complete article is found here.

This will be the test for us among the Young, Restless Reformed. So I invite you to take the test with me. The next time someone else is given an opportunity or a blessing that you wish was yours, how do you react? Do you murmur about it, or do you celebrate with them? Are you filled with gratitude, or carping rivalry? When it comes to the ministries of others, are you their biggest fan or their biggest critic? Are you consumed with envy, or is your joy made complete as you see the Bridegroom increase in the success of someone other than you?

May we not be consumed with envy or enslaved to the success of others, but instead may our joy be made complete when we hear the Bridegroom’s voice and see the Bridegroom increase in the gifts and talents and opportunities of our fellow groomsmen.

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

pray for your children

Luukas’s bedtime prayer ends with, “…and as I grow, Jesus will I know; and love and serve and honor so.” Here are seven prayer items that expand on those requests:

1. That Jesus will call them and no one will hinder them from coming.

    Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands on them and went away. (Matthew 19:13–15)

2. That they will respond in faith to Jesus’ faithful, persistent call.

    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)

3. That they will experience sanctification through the transforming work of the Holy Spirit and will increasingly desire to fulfill the greatest commandments.

    And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39)

4. That they will not be unequally yoked in intimate relationships, especially marriage.

    Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)

5. That their thoughts will be pure.

    Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8)

6. That their hearts will be stirred to give generously to the Lord’s work.

    All the men and women, the people of Israel, whose heart moved them to bring anything for the work that the Lord had commanded by Moses to be done brought it as a freewill offering to the Lord. (Exodus 35:29)

7. That when the time is right, they will GO!

    And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)

Here is Jon Bloom’s full post.

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

i surrender all

All to Jesus I surrender; all to Him I freely give;
I will ever love and trust Him; in His presence daily live.

All to Jesus I surrender; humbly at His feet I bow;
Worldly pleasures all forsaken; take me, Jesus, take me now.

All to Jesus I surrender; make me, Savior, wholly Thine;
Let me feel the Holy Spirit; truly know that Thou art mine.

All to Jesus I surrender; Lord, I give myself to Thee;
Fill me with Thy love and power; let Thy blessing fall on me.

All to Jesus I surrender; now I feel the sacred flame.
O the joy of full salvation! Glory, glory, to His Name!

I surrender all, I surrender all,
All to Thee, my blessed Savior,
I surrender all.

Words by Judson W. Van DeVenter, 1896
Music by Winfield S. Weeden, 1896

 
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Posted by on March 9, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

his bedtime prayer

We are grateful to have a son who is fairly easy to put to bed in the evenings. After dinner at 6:30, we play and cuddle in the living room; it’s bath time at 7, and then more cuddling/reading time in the bedroom until 8. We put him on his crib, say a prayer, turn off the lights, close the door and he dozes off.

I want him to eventually say the bedtime prayer with us so I changed the text to make it rhyme. Thus, here is our family’s version of…

“Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,

for biblical dreams and good night’s rest,
for angels to watch over my nest;
and as I grow, Jesus will I know,
and love and serve and honor so.”

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

promises to live by

When I was a student in college and graduate school, before every exam (whether it was a short quiz or a major exam), I would pray and claim this verse, Psalm 121: 1-2. Sometimes, I would actually imagine myself proclaiming it in an oratorical setting: “I lift up my eyes unto the hills; where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” I would acknowledge that there was nothing I could accomplish apart from Him, not even the writing of my name in the paper. All knowledge comes from God.

Now that he has put me in this challenging job where I must speak a language that I started to learn five years ago, He has led me to claim another of His promises, introduced through my browsing of this blog. This is now pasted at the bottom of my computer screen at work: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)

 
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Posted by on February 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

He always makes the first move.

April approaches and hence, Kawayan Camp. I attended it in the summer of 1996: an entire month immersed in the Word, prayer, fellowship and service. Jesus was inescapable. I pray that my son will someday have the privilege of this experience.

Prior to the camp, we were required to read the entire New Testament (which I did so faithfully) and to write a book report on “Basic Christianity” by John Stott. I found his words again through a blog I frequent. Seventeen years have passed, yet I clearly recall how the beginning of his book shouted at me then: God made the first move. It was God who drew me to himself. I could not have come on my own accord because I was totally blind to Him. It was God who stirred my heart and made me see how desperately I needed His salvation. And He still presses on, at every moment, drawing my wandering heart to accept His tender mercies.

¤  ¤  ¤

We can never take God by surprise. We can never anticipate him. He always makes the first move. He is always there ‘in the beginning’. Before we existed, God took action. Before we decided to look for God, God had already been looking for us. The Bible isn’t about people trying to discover God, but about God reaching out to find us.

Many people imagine God sitting comfortably on a distant throne, remote, aloof, uninterested, a God who doesn’t really care for our needs and has to be badgered into taking action on our behalf. Such a view is completely wrong. The Bible reveals a God who, long before it even occurs to men and women to turn to him, while they are still lost in darkness and sunk in sin, takes the initiative, rises from his throne, lays aside his glory, and stoops to seek until he finds them.

by John Stott, Basic Christianity, Inter Varsity Press, 1958

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2013 in Uncategorized