Sunday, December 29, 2013
I learned that we can:
1) Look Back in thanksgiving on how our Heavenly Father has shown His Love to us in helping us throughout the year.
2) Look Forward in anticipation and Hope to what He will do in the coming year.
3) Look Up daily in Faith to believe and trust His promises that what He said will come true.
We all have a choice to believe and obey the Truth of God or the lies of the evil one. Who do you believe today?
I learned too that we have the Triple A rating before the Lord.
We, His children, all have been:
a) Appointed by Him having a destiny to achieve (the Hope of our salvation)
b) Anointed by Him having the power to achieve (the Faith of our salvation)
c) Approved by Him having the motivation to achieve - not to gain favour in service but having favour to serve in gratitude (the unconditional Love of our salvation)
Let us move into the new year with this assurance, we are on God's side and He has given us His Triple A rating to fulfill our destiny and purpose. Hallelujah and Amen!
Thursday, November 7, 2013
We have been delivered from being Sin's slaves to become born again as sons and daughters of God.
But often we walk not in that knowledge but act and behave as if we are still under slavery.
When we serve in different ministries and use our gifts and talents in various services, do we serve with pleasure and willingness, out of a grateful heart or are we serving out of duty as servants/slaves only?
Yes, often we can begin to serve without much emotional desire or joy, but as we mature, we need to understand and grow to serve with the knowledge that our service pleases our Father because we do so willingly and joyfully.
Look at the example of the two brothers in Luke 15:11-32.
The younger son sinned and felt unworthy to be called a son. He returned (repented) but wanted to be called a servant/slave only. BUT what did the father do? He ran, threw his arms around his son and kissed him!
Wow! Our Heavenly Father still accepts and loves us though we sinned and; when we return, He embraces us and still calls us 'son'!
So let this knowledge sink in: "We are much loved because of our Lord Jesus" - hence let us serve with this immovable understanding that our Father knows us and loves us.
The older son - never strayed, always faithfully serving yet what of his heart? Was he serving with gratefulness and pleasure or is it in duty only? Look at what he says in Luke 15:29 "Look! All these years I've been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders."
He was a faithful son yet he serve as a slave! See the father's reply in Luke 15:31: "`My son,' the father said, `you are always with me, and everything I have is yours."
Like this father, our Heavenly Father is well-pleased that we serve Him faithfully but let us guard against the attitude that we serve because we HAVE to and not because we WANT to. Let us come to the full realisation that our Father is ALWAYS with us and have gave us ALL we need to serve Him (not just resources but all the joy and strength we need to serve Him willingly and with pleasure!)
So which son are you? Are you feeling guilty and unworthy to serve? Are you feeling angry and unhappy that you serve?
Look to our Lord Jesus, our Elder Brother. He served His Father and our Father with joy and pleasure.
Let us do so every day with the Holy Spirit's help as sons and NOT slaves.
"Duty says I have done enough. But love asks can I do more?"
Friday, October 18, 2013
My own journey in growing in discipleship and in discipling others began after a year of coming to the Lord. My motivation and conviction was the realisation that a new believer is like a new-born baby who needs to be followed up in spiritual matters. So starting from my student days in university, I have decided that discipling and helping new believers grow is my top priority in ministry. With my first individual follow-up to small group discipling, I have found the joy of seeing these new believers grow, and more so when they in turn help others to grow.
I am still praying regularly for these disciples of mine over the past 33 years. Are all walking faithfully in the Lord? Some are not as far as I know. It would have been wonderful to see all of them faithfully reproducing in the Lord more disciples who will disciple others. But for various reasons, like the 4 types of hearts mentioned in Mark 4:3-8; only those whose hearts are like good soil will they produce a harvest. Nevertheless, I pray that ALL will return to the Lord and have their hearts transformed for a bountiful harvest.
My disciples come from various races and nationalities: British Caucasian, Filipino and Chinese from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore and Indonesia. I have discipled in England, Malaysia and Singapore. Some are serving in full-time ministries with churches while others serve in their church as volunteers. Those who are on fire for God have reproduced themselves many times in disciples who are now discipling others. This is the legacy that I am glad to be part of.
Currently in my church which has adopted the G12 vision and strategy of discipling, multiplication and governing, my wife and I are involved in an open cell that we pray will grow to become a G12 cell with 12 men and women who are in turn discipling others.
The Lord says only 2 things will last - His Word and people who will call Him their God. I am glad I am giving my life to bring His Word into the lives of His people to see them do the same for many others.
What about you, dear reader? What are you giving your life to?
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
We lose our peace when we give in to stress and troubles which can be work-related, family-related or even personal struggles. We think that our enemy is human though the root of it is that we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against all the principalities (spiritual forces) of darkness.
The solution is found in the word of the Lord to us in Ephesians 6 to take up our full armour especially the shield of faith (literally translated as THE LARGE SHIELD OF BELIEF). This mighty and large shield is able to quench (extinguish) all the fiery darts (flaming arrows) that is aimed to harm us. Let us raise up this invincible shield so that we are covered.
Wear our helmets as well as it protects our minds from all the negative and destructive thoughts that come from the wicked one. Put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness and the shoes of the gospel of peace.
Then let us take up the Sword of the Spirit which is the word (literally translated as declaration i.e. rhema) of God on our lips testifying (speaking forth) against and defeating our enemy.
As in Rev 12:11, we overcome (literally conquer) our accuser through the Blood of Jesus (the Lamb) and the word of our testimony (literally, through the saying of our witness). We are already under the Blood because we trust in Jesus so we declare out loud to our accuser that we have victory, we have joy, we have freedom and we will walk in the Lord's plan for our lives.
Finally in persevering (holding on) prayer and petition in the spirit (with our spiritual language) for the Lord's help and deliverance in and through all our trials, we have victory and peace! Come on, be strong and courageous and let's fight on - we are on the winning side!
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
But in John 10:10, the Lord said that He came to give us life and life to the full (more abundantly). The Greek word for full/abundant is "perissos" which means superabundant, extraordinary, something further or more. The word abundant is often used in connection to grace in the New Testament. Hence we can receive abundant grace daily as we walk in faith and obedience to Jesus.
When do we need abundant grace? Is it not when we desire to be more like Jesus in our character and in our service?
We don't need much grace if we are self-sufficient having received eternal life and now just need to cruise along till our home-going. But is this the life we are to live? Has not our Lord called us to be disciples who make disciples who in turn will make disciples?
Being a disciple and making disciple-makers need all the superabundant grace that the Lord offers each day.
We cannot store up the grace so that we can use it another day. The Lord gives it to us one day at a time, more than sufficient for all we have to face.
Let us live this superabundant life of discipleship for it is a blessing like no other.
We have the gift of eternal life, let us also ask and receive the blessing of abundant life as we walk in willing obedience to His calling and commission to make disciples of all nations.
Monday, July 15, 2013
The fruit of the Spirit is like an apple tree - the apple (fruit) is related to the tree. Only apples can come from apple trees and not other kinds of fruit. Similarly, we who have the Holy Spirit will bear His fruit in us - that of Christlikeness if we abide in Him.
Also the fruit of the apple tree will only come when the tree is matured enough to produce apples. Similarly, the fruit of the Spirit is a sign of our maturity. The more we grow in Christ, the more of His fruit we will see in our lives.
The gifts of the Spirit, on the other hand, is like a Christmas tree ( a pine tree) where we hang our Christmas gifts and decorations on. The gifts bear no resemblance to the tree. Similarly, the gifts of the Spirit are not marks of a Christian's maturity. They do not convey spiritual growth nor personal holiness. They are gifts given by the Spirit for the good of all regardless of the spiritual life of the recipient. All the Spirit requires for the receiver of His gifts is their availability to be His channels.
Hence let us walk in trust and obedience to the Holy Spirit daily, bearing His fruit and sharing His gifts.
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
For some of you it's time to head home as you complete your studies.
The experiences and things you have learnt over here is a stepping stone to greater maturity and growth in Christ.
I have listed 3 things that you need to commit to so that you can continue to grow and mature from glory to glory and from grace to grace.
1) Guard your devotional time with God -
Guard this time well as it is the most crucial point of faith in your life. What you have started here - a time spent with God on a daily basis, feeding on His Word and praying and worshiping Him, needs to be maintain when you are back in your homeland. The 'safety and security' of friends here will no longer be present at home but the security in Christ still remains.
2) Get into fellowship with a church -
If you have your home church, return with a gusto and be involved. If not, pray and seek out a church to worship and participate in. Be a participant and not a pew-sitter! Get involved in church Sunday celebration - worship in a large group. Get involved in church cell group - worship/participation in a small group.
Both are important as the Lord will work through preaching of the word and the fellowship & accountability of a small group. Find a cell group that will genuinely accept you and care enough for you to rebuke you in love if necessary.
A word of caution - do not try to find the current kind of atmosphere for your cell group or even church meeting. You will be frustrated as a home setting will be different from a student-oriented kind of fellowship.
3) Give yourself fully to the Lordship of Christ
This is a very important area as you start your career and gain cash and even pursue courtship.
Surrender your career to the Lord from the beginning that it will not be a hindrance to your faith in Christ but a stepping stone towards all that He has plan for you.
Surrender your cash to Him and regularly tithe - you will find that He is no man's debtor - He will provide all you need.
Surrender your courtship to Him - if you have begun relationship or seeking to begin one, seek the Lord for His choice for you. Two is better than one but they must not be unequally yoked! Pray that your partner-to-be will have a heart for God and the things of God.
Finally understand the times we are in. These are not easy times so walk in much prayer and faith that God will fulfill His purpose which is the ultimate return of Christ and establishment of His kingdom.
My prayers and blessings in Christ to all of you. May the Lord grant you a heart that is settled in Him and a faith and a love that continues to grow in Him and for Him.
Monday, June 10, 2013
These are questions that all of us ask one time or another. Passion can be defined as an intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction for something or someone.
When I was a child, I was curious about things and would often take apart things to see how they work (of course, my parents try to make sure these things were already unusable!). From this, I develop an interest in engineering and pursue a degree in telecommunication engineering.
After graduation, I worked with a multinational company but not in the area of telecom. In the Lord's design, I worked on programming the various test machines of the company - an area I had little training in. These were the early years that computers were not personal machines like now but basically workstations connected to a mainframe.
About halfway through my career at the company, my boss tasked me to train some technicians on the updated software that I had implemented. It seem I enjoyed that task very much as I seek to teach and train them to the best of my abilities.Hence it was without hesitation that I took up a lecturing position at a local polytechnic though it meant a drastic cut in pay.
Teaching post-secondary students in the knowledge and skills of electronic engineering meant learning to mould the vast amount of information to digestible bits for them. It meant simplifying and condensing so that students can understand and apply what was important. I found that I enjoyed this process more and more and strive to improve in content delivery every semester.
Looking back after 26 years of polytechnic education, I enjoy teaching because as I teach, I learn twice as much and more. I enjoy teaching not only youth but also young children and older adults which I had an opportunity to provide training to. Over the years, my students have varied from as young as aged 2 to as old as 70 years old.
It is a wonderful experience to do what you know you have been created for. This experience is possible for all of us who are willing to let our Creator God take control and lead us. He knows us and His plans for us are good. Let us trust and obey Him as He leads each day. Walking in His path and plans for us will bring much fulfillment and joy. Doing His will each day brings pleasure both to Him and us.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
I have 2 wonderful children, now adults, who taught my wife and I how much God loves us as a parent. Raising them with each of their personality and gender differences require appropriate styles. Now they are adults, are we done parenting them? No, until we or they leave this earth and be at home with Jesus, they are still our children and we will continue (though in a different capacity and way) to be the parents to them.
My wife and I have been involved in helping other children too especially in the age group of 2 to 6 years. We found it a crucial time for these young ones to know the love of God their creator and redeemer.
I found that most adults who respond later in life, whether in their teens or youth years, to the Gospel are those who have some background in Christian education whether in a church kindergarten or church Sunday school program. Personally, I grew up going to a church kindergarten, singing Gospel songs and hearing about Jesus.
My involvement with children's ministry started when I was a student in England where during the summer vacation, I volunteered to serve in United Beach Missions. This involved going to the beaches, setting up an area where through story, song and skits, the Gospel is shared to children (with their adult parents around).
Then in the 1990's, my wife and I started a program called Toddlers for Christ in the church we were attending. We formulated our own 2-year curriculum with emphasis on saturating the hearts of these young ones with the love of God. We saw that most mothers would sit either at the back of the church or in another room with their toddlers so as not to disturb the congregation during Sunday worship. Hence we incorporated a time called Mothers for Christ where they can learn something while taking care of their young ones. Over a period of two years, another program, Preschoolers for Christ, was added to cater for the older children of 4-6 years.
In my current church, we got involved in the GKidz program, first with the David Club (children under 4 years) then with the Timothy Club (Kindergarten section). Although it is tiring but at the end of the day, we know that the children we taught will in time respond to God's love.
Dear reader, you will never fully know the impact you have when you sow love and truth in a child's life. If you know Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, then your impact will have eternal consequences even as the child receives the truth you speak and the love you show.
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Here's the link:
Let us remember always to bless and praise Him for our God is everlasting and His praise is everlasting.
Thursday, March 14, 2013
When he was born, our prayers were that he will have the best features of both of us, not just physically but in all aspects. In a sense, the Lord has answered when we see him grow up to be a man of integrity, responsible and committed with a heart of generosity and willingness to help others.
We had also prayed in his childhood, that the Lord would bring the right woman for him and he would be the right man for that person. Again we see the Lord's answer in our daughter-in-law. She is the Lord's choice to complement my son in areas where he needs it and together we believe they will fulfill all of the Lord's plans and purposes for their lives.
Dear readers, especially for those who have children, do pray for them to have the Lord bring the right person at the right time into their lives so that the next generation will fulfill what God has purposed and do mightier deeds that we have ever done.
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Again, our faithful Heavenly Father was there to provide and helped us through that trial. Praise be His Name!
But more than His provision, the best thing that came through that period was my parents' salvation.
It was in early 1988 that my dad was first diagnosed with this inoperable cancer. My mum at first kept the news from him but after his condition worsened, allowed me to inform him. It was during the period before my dad was told about his real condition (though I believed he already suspected), that both my parents allowed us to invite a brother and a sister in Christ from the Church of Singapore to share with them the gospel. Both of them prayed to receive Christ that fateful night in 1988. It was a joy to see both of them growing in faith as we brought them to church those few months.
Prior to my dad's conversion, he had every night faithfully (for almost 2 years) read a chapter of the Bible that I gave him. After completing a book, he would write the date that he completed that book. I believed that reading the Bible, though he was still a pre-believer, helped him to be ready to believe when the time came.
In early 1989, my dad and mum went through the waters of baptism making a stand to their siblings and relatives their commitment to follow Christ. Before my dad's condition took a turn for the worse, I had invited him to a Pentecostal rally (with Ps Cho and other pastors) telling him that God will heal him. He was all ready to go but a few days before the rally, he went into a semi-coma which lasted almost 2 months before finally the Lord took him home. He had just turned 56 and was preparing to study for his law degree after his retirement.
Was God unfair to take him home so early? Was He unfair too when He called home my elder sister last month at age 57?
No, I believe that God in all His wisdom and goodness, knew what He has doing. My dad had lived a full life , as has my sister, and he had received the most important gift of all - the gift of eternal life by accepting Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour and Lord. That I believe sums up a life of a person - does he or she have a personal relationship with God? If yes, than whether short or long, that person is living or has lived the good life promised to all who believed in Jesus.
Dear reader, don't delay. Get right with God today for today is the Day of Salvation to all those who called upon the Name of Jesus!
Monday, January 7, 2013
Declare each day:
"In the Name of Jesus, I command every organ, tissue and cell of my body to function in the perfection You have made it to function. The blood that flows through me flows through clean arteries, veins and capillaries giving life to every part of my body from the top of my head to the sole of my feet: to my eyes, teeth, gums, muscles, nerve, skin, bones and joints. Every gland produces hormones and chemicals sufficient for my daily health. I walk in health everyday because by the Lord's stripes I am healed."