Saturday, April 08, 2006

I trust in God's Providence

I trust in God’s Providence

“We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.”  (Romans 8: 28)

Why should I trust God’s disposal of events in my life?

  1. God sees the total environment of every situation.  He sees the beginning, the middle and the end.  The total environment of any situation comprises the following:  the why, the what, the where, the who, the when and the how.  God sees it all

  2. God knows what is best for me.  His plans for me are excellent and nobody except me can make it otherwise.  (Isaiah 25:1; Esther 4: 17 – 19)

  3. God wants the very best for me.  And whatever happens in my life constitutes the best plan of God for me.  (Romans 8: 28)

  4. God has excellent reasons in weaving pain and pleasure into his pattern of my everyday circumstances.  (Hebrews 12: 5 – 12)

For all these reasons and personal experience confirming these reasons, I trust in God’s disposal of events in my life.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Ask Boldly and Believe

Ask Boldly & Believe

“Jesus answered them, ‘Have faith in God.  I assure you that whoever tells this hill to get up and throw itself in the sea and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.  For this reason I tell you:  when you pray and ask for something, believe that you have received it, and you will be given whatever you ask for.” (Mark 11: 22 – 24)

Today, I am in need to know how to receive from God.  I need to have my container enlarged.  I feel keenly that I am about to witness the outflow of God’s blessings to me.  My ability to receive will be in direct proportion to the size of my container, that is, to my faith, patience, humility and wisdom.  These virtues make up my container.  Christ is saying to me this morning:  Have faith in God and ask for what you want boldly.  Make up your mind that it is yours and it will be.

Thank you Jesus for these marvelous words.  I have made up my mind that I want a very large container in order to receive all the good things you have planned for me.  Therefore I ask you to increase my faith, patience, humility and wisdom.  In accordance with your word, I believe that these are mine and that my container is enlarged.  Help me today to practice faith, patience, humility and wisdom.  Amen!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Do you still love me?

Do you still love me?

“After the meal Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these others do?’  He answered, ‘Yes Lord, you know I love you.” (John 21: 15)

During the trail of Jesus, Peter denied Christ three times.  Christ had predicted this sin and had said that he prayed for Peter so that he would recover and help his brothers.  I too believe that Christ prayed for me that after my fall I will rise again to serve him like Peter.  Paul fell and rose again by the grace of Jesus.  Augustine and Ignatius fell and rose to serve Christ well.  Today, aware of my situation and all that has happened as a result:  loss of faith, innocence, boldness and the consequent self-doubt, Jesus is asking me this morning: “Emmanuel son of Paul, do you love me more than these others do?  After all that happened, are you still enthusiastic about me?”  Yes, Lord, I love you.  I desire to love you above everything.  You know everything Lord.  If you find that I do not love you as I should, please make up what is lacking in my love.  

How can I prove my love for Jesus?  Today, and this day is very important, I surrender myself completely to you Jesus.  I try to do my job well.  I accept whatever happens to me today with patience and fortitude.  Help me Lord.  Amen!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Plentiful Harvest

Plentiful Harvest

“Have you caught anything, friends?’ And when they answered, ‘No’, he said, ‘Throw the net out to starboard’ and you’ll find something.’  So they dropped the net, and there were so many fish that they could not haul it in.  The disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord.”  (John 21: 5 – 7)

Jesus knows where the harvest is plentiful.  He knows where to catch the big fish.  If only I can trust him, he would surely direct me as he did the disciples.  When he told them what to do, they did it.  “So they dropped the net.”  Jesus understands my present situation thoroughly.  I may compare the Enterprise to fishing.  If I depend on my own resources, I fail.  If I listen to Jesus and do what he tells me, I succeed.

Lord Jesus, I thank you for your word this morning.  I realize that without you, I can achieve nothing with the Enterprise.  What I seek to know is how to listen and understand what you are saying to me today.  I promise you Jesus, I will do whatever you tell me.  You speak to me through the scriptures.  I agree.  But how do I apply it to my needs?  Lord, teach me to listen to you and to understand you.  Grant me the courage to do whatever you ask me.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Doubt No More

Doubt No More

“Doubt no longer but believe…… You believe because you can see me. Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.” (John 20: 28 – 29)

Today, faith is the main message and the principal gift from Christ. Jesus is urging me not to doubt any more but to believe fully. He went on to say that those who believe in the word of God without waiting to see sense evidence like Thomas are blessed. It seems to me that the dominant theme of the resurrection is faith in Jesus and peace and joy to those who believe in him.

Today I am seeking a deep experience of faith. What exactly do I want? I want a sure and unshaken belief in Jesus’ word, his promises. A belief that is unshaken by delays, obstacles and disappointments. A belief that is born out of the experience of the cross and resurrection. A belief that understands intimately God’s gentle arrangement in life, that is, that cross comes before crown, and tests before testimony. The delays, obstacles and disappointments are the crosses, tests and trials. Surely, like in the case of Jesus, I see them as the sweet forebears of crown and victory.

Lord Jesus, thank you for your word today. Grant me strong faith, faith that stands on your word inspite of delays, obstacles and disappointments.

Monday, April 03, 2006

The Marks of the Cross

The Marks of the Cross

“Peace be with you,’ and showed them his hands and his side. The disciples were filled with joy when they saw the Lord, and he said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father sent me, so am I sending you.” (John 20:21)

Jesus says to me this morning, “Peace be with you.” Then he showed me his hands and his side. Thank you Lord Jesus for the gift of peace. I receive it with gratitude. But why are you showing me your hands and your side?” I listened. “I show you my hands and my side to make you realize that I am really the crucified one. I was dead but behold I am alive forever more. And I will always have the marks of the cross on me to remind you that victory came through the cross. You will also have your crosses but never forget my cross and victory. Let this be your strength and your consolation.”

So this is it, Lord Jesus. I am always to see the marks of the cross on you as a reminder that victory comes through the cross.

As the Father sent Jesus to bear witness to the truth so Jesus is sending me. Lord, grant me a deep understanding of the cross.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Excellent Designs of God

Excellent Designs of God

“God’s designs for me are excellent, trustworthy, long-planned and true.” (Isaiah 25:1)

God’s loving and powerful providence for my life are his excellent designs for me. How I wish I know this forty years ago! When I reflected on the above scripture in 1996, I wrote the following:

“I believe this scripture and I have been blessed by this word of God through peace and the acceptance of God’s disposal of events in my life. The promise of God’s plan for me does not exclude delays, obstacles and disappointments. Rather, these hurdles are in-built in God’s excellent designs for me. The children of Israel suffered delays, obstacles, disappointments and wars before they could take possession of the Promised Land. David waited for many years before he could become the promised king of Israel. During the years of waiting, he suffered obstacles, disappointments and wars.

The best things in my life came after much delays, obstacles and disappointments. I call to mind the following projects: Lond80, Kalamazoo87, QOP92, Enterprise96 and Casa03.

The delays, obstacles, disappointments are testing ground for my faith. They are temporary hurdles. As gold is purified by fire, so is our faith purified by the delays, obstacles and disappointments we meet in life.