Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. ~ Proverbs 4:23 (ESV)
Our heart is very valuable treasure that we must protect and guard…why? Well, because our life depends on it. Besides, why would God ever instruct us to guard something unimportant? (He doesn’t by the way) So when God instructs us to guard or to protect our hearts it must mean that our hearts must be very vital and it is. Our hearts makes us who we are and it determines our lives.
Proverbs 4:23 “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” That verse should say it all. Our hearts are more valuable than the next upcoming quiz, guy, or latest Twilight move. When we talk about emotional purity, we’re stating how to keep our emotions and hearts pure. As I have said earlier, purity is…
As I was browsing my Tumblr account, I happened to check on the Activity menu which displays the notifications on my blog from other users, such as likes, reposts, others. The first notification was a “like” for one of my old entry from 2012. Some parts of that entry is posted below, It was written last October 27, 2012. It was me, so wanting to let go of the stronghold over my heart that time.
I knew the relationship wasn’t working anymore. I’ve learned to live with the pain that I’m comfortable with, I was afraid to let go of it all. To start a new life without him, even though I know I wasn’t happy anymore. I chose to compromise. My happiness for my comfort. The pain was too familiar to even let go of.
And later on I realized, that God brought me there. To that moment of pain, utter dependence and full surrender so that I could be found by Him.
Oh, how God works. It was a long, hard journey, of letting go, moving forward and starting anew. Seeing this post from my old self, my broken self few years back, I just can’t help but to Praise the One Who’s been there for me. The One Who never let go of me. The One who waited for me patiently. The One Who Carried me. My God. My ever faithful, merciful God. Jesus, my Healer. For bringing me here, to my destination. For providing me the grace, the strength to go through this journey. For never giving up on me.
This post is such a nice reminder of the Faithfulness of God in my life. On who I was, where I was when He rescued me. Broken, useless, a sinner and still He chose to die for me and to call me by name. How He Loves me, is truly incomprehensible.
“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” – Romans 5:6
Few days ago, I saw this tweet from a friend…
It was all God. It was all by His grace and through Him that I am here.
“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. ” – 1 Corinthians 15:10
To where I am now, I am in a place where I have inner peace and joy. It was not always perfect, but what makes it different from where I used to be is, I have a hope. I have my faith in my God whom I know will never fail me. He brought me here. And I am confident that in my next destination, He is right here with me. He will carry me and He will bring me there.
The God who brought me here is the same God who will bring me to the places, where He can use me and where I can fulfill His purpose for me. God is not through with me yet.
And as I read this beautiful quotation, I saw the sovereignty and the goodness of God:
“First, He brought me here, it is by His will I am in this strait place: in that fact I will rest. Next, He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace to behave as His child. Then, He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow. Last, In His good time He can bring me out again—how and when He knows.
Let me say I am here, (1) By God’s appointment, (2) In His keeping, (3) Under His training, (4) For His time.”- Andrew Murray, quoted in Though the Mountains Shake, by Amy Carmichael, p. 12
“Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry
it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 1:6
“I will be your God throughout your lifetime— until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.” – Isaiah 46:4
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you” – Deuteronomy 31:6
“A woman who fears the Lord will not run away from God to satisfy her longings and relieve her anxieties. She will wait for the Lord. She will hope in God. She will stay close to the heart of God and trust in his promises. The prospect of departing into the way of sin will be too fearful to pursue; and the benefits of abiding in the shadow of the Almighty too glorious to forsake.” - John Piper
Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. - Proverbs 31:30
On March 28, 2014, I had the event of Passion Manila written on my planner. I was excited even though this is my first time to attend a Passion conference and didn’t know what to expect, but a night full of worship and singing praises to our King. I’ve always been a fan of worship songs and I love singing along, no matter what is the tempo ;)
I remembered having the phrase “Watch a Christian concert” written down on my 2014 Planner checklist. And then the Passion event came, I took a half-day leave for preparation, since the seating is not reserved and this is our first time commuting to The Big Dome. I’m with 2 of my dearest friends at church and one dear friend from the office, our seat is on Patron section (yey!)
This entry is almost a week late, but then I have to document every bit of the happenings from this event. On the way there, while in the bus, I had a conversation with a dear friend regarding the realizations that God brought to us the whole week. One of them is,
God is not only our greatest Teacher, but our patient Tutor. He doesn’t just teach us once, gives us experiences that will bring amazing life lessons, but sometimes tests us & reviews us of the lessons that He brought us to learn from those past experiences. So here I am, documenting every details of His goodness and faithfulness to me on that special night.
The opening of the event, a very lively and upbeat song started playing. My heart is just bursting with joy! :D Kristian Stanfill came, singing “God’s Great Dance floor”. Here’s a 3-minute preview of the opening event of the concert :) Although I have to warn you, you might get a bit dizzy watching this as I was jumping while holding my camera, capturing this :D
The whole worship experience was in-explainable. I just found my self, raising both of my arms for as long as I could remember. As I hear God speak to my heart:
Wherever I am now, God called me here. Whatever I am doing now,God called me to do it. The whole time, i was just in His Spirit of joy (hyper) Even as I wrote on my journal, I still dance listening to their song. The lyrics from the song:
I feel alive, I come alive, I am alive on God’s great dance floor!
literally came to life within me and to the thousands of people in the place. I jumped, danced, skipped, sang my heart out for joy, full of worship and just love that has poured out to me by Jesus. Each song speaks especially to me, as I closed my eyes, I see God, smiling at us, at His people gathered to sing praises to our Maker!
Then comes the message from Pastor Louie Giglio. He preached about the 3 Parable Stories from Luke 15. And from the Parable of the Lost son, two facts has touched me:
The grace and mercy of God is far greater than how far we have run or how deep we have fallen.
That God is so loving and merciful to His people, no matter how far we have turned away from Him. Be it a drastic back-sliding or just simply ignoring Him and prioritizing worldly things rather than seeking Him, God is there, always patiently waiting for me. Orchestrating events in my life that will leave me surrendered and in desperate need of Him. God’s mercy and grace far outstretched my distance from Him.
How the Son in the story came back to his Father because he had lost, wasted every money he had and left with nothing, even food to eat. And how His father, seeing his son far away from their house, rushing towards him, running and welcomed him with the warmest embrace. Kissed him, hugged him and threw a large party for his dearest son!
“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate.For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.” – Luke 15:22-24
He also then reminded me of the story of how I was called. He led me on that desperate moment of His grace, He gave me the strength to listen and obey Him. And that was the start of the great, never ending party of my life, even up to the heaven.
Having realized that God is a Party-throwing God. He is never kill-joy. He is a Holy, Party-throwing God!
2. I don’t have to earn God’s love. I already have it fully, Jesus paid it all. Jesus is enough.
I am already His daughter when I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I am His possession. I don’t have to earn any of His love because I could never earn it through any good works. God’s love was lavished upon us when Jesus Christ, sacrificially gave up His innocent, blameless life for me to be reconciled with God. And it was God whom I need to please.
Then came the amazing fact that all of God’s creation is praising Him. Singing along with stars and whales, witnessing Psalm 148 came to life! You could check out this video to see a glimpse of Pastor Louie’s amazing demonstration! :)
I was just in awe realizing this: God created us to Worship Him. Not just through songs, but to fully give everything, lay down to surrender our lives, our hearts, all of us, His creation to Him.
Overall, I was just moved by everything, from the worship to the message. My heart was just so grateful to God for letting me be at this place, for experiencing this kind of celebration. For letting me dance on His great dance floor :)
At the end of the conference, we really felt from the Passion worship team and thousands of people, the feeling of never wanting to end this one of a kind celebration.
I’ve felt like being a part of this celebration on the earth, while raising my hand with these thousands of people, as we said “Yes!” to Jesus. All of God’s creation, in heaven and the earth, celebrated with us!
This video captures the energy of the alive and free generation of people that is in love and in awe of our God. And this is how God’s people party, with the real reason for celebration!
I am just so thankful to Becca Music Inc. (BMI) for bringing Passion team to Manila this year. We really hope that this will be an annual event ;)
And to the Passion team, thank you for being so alive and passionate in leading people to God, through your music and powerful, bible-based preaching :) We hope to hear from you more, and sooner :)
Sharing with you some pictures from this night :) Credits to other #PassionManila2014 contributors on Facebook and Instagram :)
Days after, I still found my self in the state of grace and never-ending amazement. And my facebook friends can attest to that :P
It has been almost a week since this wonderful event, and still my heart longs to praise You Lord all the more. Only by Your grace, my God.
Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” – John 4:23-24
“Let them praise the name of the Lord, for at his command they were created, and he established them for ever and ever— he issued a decree that will never pass away.” – Psalm 148:5-6
I’m posting this journal entry from last year because on how the Lord is reminding me of that heavenly moment on the retreat I attended last December 1, 2013. Alone with Him on that shed, having the trees witnessed my heavy heart poured out to God. Listening to His every word that I needed to hear.
You’re waiting for me on that shed. longing to hear me, longing for me. I can feel your sympathy while I’m pouring my heart out,while my heart is aching, I can feel You hurting.
At long last, I’ve seen what’s been missing. All my life, I’m longing for someone who will make me feel that I am of worth, wanted, loved. So many things costs me on desperately chasing that satisfaction, longing deep within my heart.
Desiring for that whole in my heart to be filled with great love and romance. Compromising myself, every part of me, my heart.
Lord I don’t want this to happen ever again. You know more than I, how my heart is so weak, vulnerable, stubborn. It’s still broken, yet capable of giving in again, to anyone that will capture it.
I don’t want this anymore. My soul is so tired and Your Spirit grieves. I couldn’t let that happen once again.
We had a covenant at that moment Lord, as I come with you face to face, realizing my iniquities. I could feel Your earnest look while saying to me:
“You don’t have to feel that way again. I am Your Savior, and I love you with my perfect love. I will never fail you. I love you more than any of your ideal man could have. I am your God’s best. I am Him, the One you’re longing for all your life. I can show you far greater things more than you could ever dreamed of. But daughter, you have to be satisfied on Me alone. I’ve told you that My Grace is Sufficient. Please believe me. Hold on tight to My words. Have faith, a firm faith.”
And I could still remember my response to You:
“Please Lord, hide this desire of my heart to have that godly man/relationship in my life. Until I could finally say that You, Jesus Christ is enough for me. That You are more than enough. That I am most satisfied in You alone. If I couldn’t live to that, then Lord please take away this desire in my heart.”
I don’t want to live my life with You only as a runner up in my heart. I want You to be the first more than anything in this world.
Change my heart Oh Lord. It’s hard, but with You, nothing is impossible. You are the God of possibilities. I’m holding on to that hope through my faith in you. As You reminded me of your words:
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”- Hebrews 10:23
I’m surrendering to You my heart. No matter how broken and dirty it is. I believe that You can restore it, You are able to heal it and make it whole and new. I’m giving it all to You. That whole in my heart that You can only fill.
My future husband, I believe You will bring us together at Your perfect time. If it’s Your will for me, it will happen. And all these time that I will be waiting, I know it will all be worth it. Because You already filled that whole in my heart with your overflowing, unending, sweetest love and grace. I lack nothing.
2 Corinthians 12:9
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing”
“Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”
I love You Lord. I long for You. I wait for You.
In the name of Jesus Christ, my True Lover and Prince. Amen.
Being whole again requires full surrender and total commitment to my Healer. I remembered giving my heart to Jesus a long time ago, but still God is continuously asking for it because sometimes, due to lack of intimacy with Him, being lukewarm, I tend to take my heart back from His gentle, caring Hands. And since my heart is out of my own control, this stubborn one tends to wander around, looking, searching for it’s longing of a love that satisfies. And always, come back lonely, often times disappointed and frustrated. And this way, realizing my iniquities, by His grace I’m there again giving my bruised heart (again) back to Jesus.
I’ve realized, this journey as a single woman, who is weak, vulnerable and a sinner, but wanting to please my Father and live a life for Jesus, requires not just once, but momentary giving, surrendering it all to my waiting, heavenly Lover, Healer and Father. Being fully satisfied with the never-ending grace and love that only God can provide. He’d given us that longing, for a greater love, and so it shall only be filled by His greatest, sweetest, unfailing, amazing Love.
My forever prayer goes back to that moment of revelation on that retreat:
Lord, I want You. All of You. You alone. Satisfaction and grace. Your love and rescue, Your healing and comfort. I want that now. Fixing my eyes on You, Jesus Christ. Lord, I love You. Please remind me of this always Lord.
The lyrics from one of my favorite songs “Unchanging God” by Elevation Worship kept repeating in my head, it goes..
You are Faithful in the midst of hurt and pain, You are Faithful..
The past month, God proved How Faithful He is the midst of confusion and pain. He saw how troubled my heart has been. God knew how desperately I’m in need of His grace even if I didn’t asked for it, He gave me a way. For me to come to that point, that breaking moment of desperation when He gently reminded me to ask for His help. Ask for His grace, ask for His healing. Ask for His mercy. He had allowed my heart to be broken, to be desperate for His help.
When I was blinded by my feelings, my emotions and did things my way, the Lord mercifully showed me the right way. He rescued me from my own mess and helped me clean it up. When my mind as constantly bombarded by false thoughts, past memories, as I plead to God to just remove all of these, God gently reminded me to face the pains, the fears, take courage and face the enemy.
God gave me the strength, His power to stand firm, to counter-attack these schemes with His power and truth. To never get affected anymore with the schemes of the enemy and his desperate attacks to bring me down.
With God, I am a victor. With Him by my side, I am more than a conqueror. I am His princess, who deserved to be loved with an unfailing, pure, kind, true love. A heavenly kind of love, by my Prince, Jesus Christ who so desperately long for my attention. Who’s waiting for me all along.
In my moments of weakness, God faithfully showed me the perfected power that only comes from Him. When I am weak, His power gets stronger and stronger. His power is perfected. He was able to provide me with that joy, peace and hope to look forward to. The promises that He has for me, Not just “positive thinking”, but Faith that is based upon my Lord who love me so much and wants the best for me. Not the second best, but the BEST!
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9
Yesterday was the first day in about a year that I felt like my depression had come back. Everyone has something they struggle with and this is the main temptation I face.
There is a part of me that feels ashamed to admit that I’m a Christian and can spend a whole day crying, fighting thoughts of self harm and thoroughly doubting that I have a good future. But I have no reason to be ashamed. Jesus has taken my shame away; in my weakness He is strong.
So I am praying that Jesus catches your attention through what I’ve admitted. Your deepest darkest parts, your lying, stealing, jealousy, pornography, unforgiveness, bitterness, reckless and any other temptation you fight is His strength.
Keep rejecting your temptation, keep trusting in the grace of Jesus to pull you through. Keep on telling Him how you feel. Yet at the end of…
I recently went through this rough stage in my life where I had so many questions inside my head, wondering why I’m still hurting. Why’d I feel stuck on the same ground after a year of a life far away from my past. I’m in desperate search of closure, but God knows what I need. It’s His peace, His perfect peace. With my mind wandering all over, and my heart wallowing in pain, God reached out to me. In a cafe, in my quiet time that Sunday afternoon. God wrote me this letter:
My dearest Daughter,
This guy that is in your past, is not worthy of your tears, of your sadness. I have already redeemed you, provided you a new heart. Do not let this new, beautiful heart be troubled by someone/something that is already in your past whom I never intended to be at your present and future. I’ve put each of you in a different worlds already because this is what pleases me. This is how I planned it, how it always intended to be. Like I’ve told you, I never meant for the two of you to end up together because If I did that, we wouldn’t have this relationship now, I could never use you for My glory. You already know what’s your desire is right? to please your Father.
I separated the two of you because I want you to know me, personally, deeply, intimately. And for you to experience the joy that only I am able to give. The closure that you think you need is not the way you’ve always imagined it to be. It happened that way to show you the reality, clearly. Stop it, stop wallowing in sadness, loneliness, stop letting the enemy dictate your mind and heart. I am all you need. I am able to provide you that peace. Not just peace but Perfect peace.The peace that transcends all human understanding. As I said,
I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. (John 14:27, NLT)
The peace that I am able to give is not that kind of peace that the world dictates. The “closure” of a failed relationship, no matter how long or exciting or drastic that relationship had been. That “closure” could never amount with the perfect peace that I am willing and able to give you.
Keep your eyes focused on me. I never told you that there will never be pain anymore, for the pain is part of the healing process. But I could promise You that great deliverance and reward at the very end of this heart surgery. I promise you, you will be whole again. No more evidence or glimpse of brokenness inside of you. I will heal you at my right, perfect time. For now, just keep your eyes on me, fix your gaze upon me. Let me fill your heart with my peace, joy and love.
Surrender all your pains to me, moment by moment. Forgive him, forgive yourself momentarily and then you will be able to be genuinely happy for them and feel that all the bitterness in your heart were already replaced by my love. Only I can do that, nobody can.
Don’t let your heart be troubled, do not be afraid to get hurt, to feel the pain. Keep your faith firm, believe that I am Almighty, All Powerful, All Knowing God.
I will reward you with my greatest love. Earlier, you compared your future husband with him. Don’t. They’re incomparable. Whom I prepared for you, will definitely love you with My love. I never told you that he is going to be perfect, but he is definitely going to be godly. Your relationship will honor me, glorify me. You will testify of my great works. Your love story, I will script. Your marriage, I will ordain. I am the Author of your life, every aspect of it. You will both serve One God, Me. You will please me in your marriage.
Just wait for it, patiently, faithfully. Trust me, my timing is perfect, my ways are perfect. Rest in my love Mailyn, Rest in my hope, in my goodness, Rest in me. You will find that perfect peace.
Your Loving Father,
God sees my heart. And He is also in pain seeing His daughter feeling so hopeless. But unlike my earthly parent, God is in control of every situation in my life. He gently assured me that I am on the right way, that I am in His hands and by His grace, I am doing just fine. In this season, God wants me to be more intimate with Him, and In this season of healing and waiting, I need to surrender everything, every thought, every pain to the One who is in control, Who knows everything. I am in desperate need of His grace. Momentary grace.
You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
Author’s note: The letter was written on Feb 24,2014.