Going outside my boundaries

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Being part of a retreat/conference preparation team isn’t something I’m unfamiliar with. For almost a decade, I have been a volunteer in various retreats/conference/camps as I continued my walk with God.

There were times that responsibilities within the scope of either pre-or during these events that my faith has been stretched, or my dedication to the cause to bring God’s glory has been put to the test.

However, for this year’s S@W MOVErs conference, everything came to a head when I was the designated host for the one-day, two-nights event.

I do admit that this isn’t my first rodeo as a host. I’ve had the opportunity to be the designated host for events that I have been part of. Some from S@W activities themselves, others were events concocted by either an inter-dgroup evangelistic effort.

However, for MOVErs, this would be my first time being a host for a two day event. To top things off, I am also part of the team’s programs committee. I am also fresh from volunteering as part of B1G’s C2nverge event as part of the programs committee as well.

I was nervous and at the same time excited for this opportunity. My nervousness stems off from having to top the hosting combo of Reynaldo Magdulot and Tin Agulan which was a really smashing success in last year’s retreat. In my eyes, Rey was able to set the bar high as a host because he was able to make the crowds laugh and be entertained as we scramble to prepare what’s next on the event itself.

I never thought I was able to make people laugh on purpose. In fact, there will be tons of times I would feel awkward in making a joke in a midst of a crowd. Thankfully those times I was able to at least gain a laugh or two.

I really thought I had big shoes to fill.

Prep time

In preparation for the event itself. I knew I had to clear every encumbrance I have spiritually to maximize everything that I can do. I had to painfully admit mistakes that I have kept to myself in fear of really painful repercussions with my grandmother.

I had to clear myself with the Lord before I can take on this endeavor. Because I know, in the end, regardless of my insecurities, I know He can and is able to use it to bring glory to Him.

When we came in the event, anticipating for the attendees, t just had to do what I had to do. I’ll give the best of what I can bring to the table so that at the end of the day, I won’t regret not giving my all.

I just came to realize, that the shoes that I though I had to fill was my own fears getting the best of me. The Lord made me aware that I don’t have to necessarily top Rey’s performance as a host because majority of the attendees are first timers.

I know that I may sound selfish, but realizing that the Lord made sure there were tons of first timer attendees, I’d probably be their first host (in what we hope to be a first among a series) to encounter in a Singles at Work event. So if ever, I won’t be compared at all to anyone.

I came in the event bringing everything that I have, I came out of the event physically tired, but relieved as well. I still had to face the consequences of my actions from a mistake I’ve done prior to the conference. But, I can fully say that I was protected, listened to and appreciated by the Lord for just doing everything in my repertoire to host the best way I know I can.

I made myself to believe that this imaginary line I have in my mind is the limit of my hosting capability. But, the Lord made me aware there is more to it than I thought it was.

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  • 22 hours ago
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  • 3 days ago

We do not choose suffering simply because it is the right thing to do, but because the One who tells us to describes it as the path to everlasting joy. He beckons us into the obedience of suffering not to demonstrate the strength of our devotion to duty, nor to reveal the vigor of our moral resolve, nor to prove the heights of our tolerance for pain; but rather to manifest, in childlike faith, the infinite preciousness of His all-satisfying promises.

The Dangerous Duty of Delight, John Piper (Final Call)
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  • 4 days ago
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  • 5 days ago
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Delighting in His presence: Worship

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As I’ve been reading John Piper’s book, The Dangerous Duty of Delight: Daring to Make God the Object of Your Desire. I’ve been given a fresh perspective into worshiping that I never really considered before.

The book talked about worshiping to not just giving Him praise. It talked about delighting in Him as you do “corporate worship”, which is his term of worshiping during Sunday service.

The gist of Piper’s message is to grasp the delight you’d be having in singing praises to the king of kings. It’s not just because you are worshiping Him because he deserves it, it also talks about the feeling of satisfaction of raising your voice to your Lord and Savior because you seek for the delight you can get in Him.

I used to think that singing praises to Him with all my heart is my duty because He is worthy of it. Whatever emotions of relief and/or happiness I get was just effects of me doing so. However, the book flipped my perspective and made me just seek to be delighted in Him as I sing my hoarse voice to Him.

I was after being delighted in worshiping Him because He deserves my praise. It wasn’t just something that I should due because of just reverence, but I should chase after the delight that He can only provide as well.

If I delight in songs that don’t openly throw praises to the Lord (or at all), that I can even sing them with reckless abandon regardless of who hears it.

What more should my passion to sing songs that acknowledge His greatness above all else? That I can even go as far as losing my voice in taking delight in singing praise to the Lord most high?

I can’t really put into words how my heart changed as I worshiped Him awhile ago. The funny thing was my throat decided to be hoarse at the moment, but I didn’t care. I wanted to get the delight that the Lord can only provide that moment. And He provided it and more.

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  • 5 days ago

Going past the pain and seeing Him amidst it all

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Within the turbulence of my emotions these past few days, the Lord was able to provide people to help me out as I try and discern everything that’s going on within me emotionally.

I was able for a brief while see through the haze of my hatred and anger and was able to finally pinpoint the reason why I felt what I felt in the first place.

It was the feeling of imbalance, of the unfairness of the relationship I had with a friend that sparked this whirlwind of angst and pain that trickled out and made me target my focus to other unconcerned parties.

I was able to calm down and see above the storm of my emotions. That it’s not really so much that I have no one backing me up, but it’s more of me really hating the feeling of this unbalanced relationship I have with one of my friends.

I find it really funny though is ever since the days my emotional turmoil. The Lord has clearly shown what I need to do.

From last saturday 

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The message basically talked about Colossians 3:13 which states:

bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

The Saturday message clearly made me see things on how I should see this situation.

But of course I had none of it. O was being immature, stubbornly clinging on to the “I deserve to be consoled because I was hurt terribly” card. The Lord, then decided to hammer the lesson in with the Sunday message, focusing on dealing with your “Laban’s” in your life.

Laban, who was the father of Jacob’s two wives - Leah and Rachel, was really a difficult person to handle. During the course of his 20 years of service, Laban, had changed Jacob’s wages 10 times.

Putting things in a looser context, the message was just to focus on what God can do. He threw back what I said in my previous post.

Son, look at me, not the person who you’re hating right now. Just look at me.

It was then and there that my heart finally gave way and finally stopped it’s immaturity and just let God do his work in said person’s life.

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So right now, it’s just me trying to deal with the remainder of my emotions and hopefully I can finally let it go.

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  • 5 days ago

Anger and how Gaim made me rethink of my position

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I’ve been trying to get a rein in my anger/frustration since last night due to situations piling up that I had to explode in crying fits (thankfully) when I was already at home.

The feeling of being ignored, the feeling of being the only one trying to understand everyone else but when it’s your turn no one tries to, the feeling where it’s just easier to hate people just because they’ll let you down regardless of what you do and the feeling that at the end of the day, no one will even go so far as to do the amount of level of understanding you go for others.

I know it’s selfish and immature to think like this. In the swirl of all my emotions I do see the point where I can look back and just shake my head at how childish I acted.

But that is later, this is now.

For the meantime, I’d allow myself the moment to let my emotions settle on where I am standing. To accept everything I am feeling and throw it at the Lord as my means of relying on His loving kindness and His grace so that I can let it all go to Him and move on with my life.

It definitely is so easy to just hate and burn everything around you in a fit of carrie-like rage and mayhem. However, I have been reminded, funnily enough by episode 40 of Gaim. When Kouta was being forced to believe that the world will hate him, his decisions to move forward, regardless of what happens to him is something he has accepted - that he has no regrets in the decision he has made.

Even if the world hates him, even if humanity turns it’s back on him, even after all the sacrifices he has made for them to be saved. It doesn’t matter to him, because he was able to accomplish his goal. I on the hand is reminded why I am who I am. Why I should continue on with who I am as a person, learning, growing and trying my best to understand people at where they are. People who I come in contact with, regardless of someone doing the same to me.

This is how the Lord has made me. Even if it hurts, I’ll continue on. 

Maybe in the future I can say things like this…. (of course putting things in it’s proper context). 

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And definitely, I will be alright because the Lord’s there with me, holding my hand when no one else would as is always been the case with me and my walk.

But right now, I have to deal with this wave of negative emotions, of all this hurt and rage that I know, if I linger longer will eventually destroy me and everything that I have held dear.

As always, even up to now, between me and God. Putting all my trust in Him, even if no one has my back.

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  • 1 week ago
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Looking at God and not at people

In my christian walk, I have often heard the phrase,

Look not at the people but look at God!

Specially when you are facing trying times in handling people that requires tons of extra grace. At most times, hat is what I have done, trying to set my sights not on how the said person (or people) have tested my patience or have hurt me in whatever degree.

I have tried in a lot of instances to understand where they are coming from. Or, I have always tried, to the best of my capacity to at least see things in their perspective. Always clinging on to the phrase look at people as how God sees them.

Of course, I can’t really say that I have 100% perfected the practice of this vision setting, I have at times heavily judged and misjudged people because of my incapability to set myself on where they are coming from. And at those moments, I of course never fail (in my own reckoning) to apologize for my misstep, or my careless burst of passionate monologue that is either misguided of misconstrued.

However, there are just times, that, however I try and see it at their perspective. No matter how hard I try to see people as how God sees them, I can’t help but stop and just think…. 

How about me? has anybody even try to understand where I am coming from? Has anyone try to understand WHY I do these things?

I’d like to apologize right here and now for the really selfish thought process. I KNOW that there’s no substitute on how the Lord understands me above any other human being out there.

But at these times of weakness, I just want to at least feel that there’s someone who would take their time and just try to know me. Without me being overt as to what I am.

As of this post, I can say that maybe I can count five people at the max who have done that In their own way. I sincerely appreciate these people with all my heart as they have tried to go past what I outwardly show to people.

There are times that I just wish people would just try and get to know me beyond what I show them.

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I don’t want my cynicism to ooze out of this post. So I’m just stopping here and just bask in the truth and loving kindness the Lord has lovingly provided during the times I feel this way.

Many are the sorrows of the wicked,
But he who trusts in the Lord, lovingkindness shall surround him.
Psalms 32: 10
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