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The LORD Himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” – Deuteronomy 31:8
Moving to Eastern Europe was a big leap of faith for me and a new season to experience God’s grace in new ways. Though uncertain of my future here, I decided to submit to my husband and follow his decision in settling to his home country. I left Asia, my job, my home, my family and friends, and my beloved church.
Before I left, I received so many prayers and words of encouragement and blessings from my loving friends and pastors. Many of them assured me that God goes before me and prepares everything for me. Knowing that so many prayed and will keep praying encouraged me a lot to face an unknown future.
On the first week upon my arrival, I had the opportunity to rest and meditate on the changes I have to embrace as well as pray and wait on God. I asked God for specific things just like a daughter would do to her father. First: a community of faith who can journey with us. Second: friends who will encourage us to grow deeper in the Lord. Third: a job in the capital city.
Thirteen days later, God surprised me with a teaching job in one of the international schools in the capital city which I happen to get by randomly sending my resumé to well-known international schools in the city. I came for the interview and to my great delight met the first Filipina who paved the way to my quick employment because of her excellent teaching performance. We later found out that she is also a Christian and invited us to the only international church she’s been attending.
I taught summer course to a group of students for a month which I enjoyed a lot. And then I was given a month and a half holidays which I plan to use in learning the language, meeting new friends and preparing for the next academic year. We also began travelling to the West, South and East of Ukraine and I am so amazed not just by the beauty of the places we’ve been to but with the friendliness and generosity of their people. God has blessed us with awesome friends everywhere we went who also loves Jesus. It deeply encourages me and assures me that indeed God goes before me and prepares everything for me.
God is growing me and increasing my faith. His answers to my specific prayers prove His goodness and faithfulness to me. I can only boast in His love and grace and thank Him and praise Him greatly.
I encourage you to listen to one of my favorite songs for all seasons. Indeed, we have such a good Abba Father who loves us so deeply, whose ways are perfect, who gives unexplainable peace and comfort and never leaves us nor forsake us. He goes before us and prepares the way for us. He desires only what’s best for His children.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork. Psalm 19:1
I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Psalm 145:1-2
All your works praise you, LORD; your faithful people extol you. They tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might. Psalm 145: 10-11
Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him in the heights above. Psalm 148:1
Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it. Psalm 96:11
God, You are beautiful beyond description. Your creation declares your glory and magnificence. How awesome is the work of your hands, O God. You are perfect in all of your ways. May your praise continue to be on our lips. We exalt you for You alone are worthy. You deserve the highest praises and honor.
So blesssed to be a part of an evangelical church that has prayer and the Word of God as its foundation. Every first Wednesday of the month, the people of God gather to seek God and pray together for the Body of Christ to be strengthened and protected and for the Kingdom of God to advance in the nations of the world.
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place. 2 Chronicles 7:14-15
I recommend this beautiful song for your prayer time today. Indeed, God sees the end from the beginnning. Our future is secure in Him.
God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours and He knows what’s best for us. He’s working things out for our good and so even when we don’t see the answers to our prayers and the waiting is taking longer than we expect, we can trust His faithfulness.
“The sacrifices of God are a broken and contrite spirit; a broken and contrite heart, He will not despise.” Psalm 51:17
Jesus once spoke about the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector who were praying in the temple. The Pharisee stood and prayed a prayer of self-exaltation that came out of his proud heart. Meanwhile, the tax collector who can’t even look up to heaven cried out a desperate prayer asking for mercy because he recognized what a great sinner he was. Jesus said that the tax collector went home more justified than the Pharisee. Why? Because those who lift themselves up will be humbled down and those who humble themseleves before God will be lifted up. Maybe some of the people who were there condemned the tax collector the same way the Pharisee did but God didn’t. People look at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart.
“God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
Pride is the root of all evil and God is against any form of evil. But He gives grace to the humble and grants forgiveness to the contrite heart. God is moved by the tears and desperate cry of a truly repentant heart.
“This is who God esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at His word.” Isaiah 66:2
God honors the meek and those who submit to His Word. He never pushes away anyone who seeks Him, who cry out for mercy and forgiveness and who longs to be restored.
God created you in His image. He made you for love and He wants you to have a love relationship with Him. But you only have two options, either you choose Him or reject Him. When you choose Him, you get to enjoy His love and affection. But when you reject Him, it’s not that He doesn’t love you, you just don’t recognize His love for you. You don’t see it or you simply ignore it.
Nevertheless, your stubbornness doesn’t change God’s character. He is still a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger and abounding in love. He doesn’t want you to perish but He wants to lead you to repentance. There’s always a chance for you to turn to Him and experience a life worth living.
He patiently waits for you to one day realize all the ways He took care of you. How He saw you through. How He hurt when you hurt especially when you’re the one hurting yourself. How he orchestrated divine appointments so that you get to hear about Him or know Him. How He sent people to help you in the darkest days of your life. He’s been there since the day you were born and He’s been loving you even though you never saw it.
I’m praying for you. As you read this, may God lift up the veil so that you may see and encounter His deep love for you and realize the many ways He saved your life. May He speak to your heart and bring you to your knees with this prayer:
“God, forgive me for not seeing your love and rejecting you. Today, I choose to love you and have a relationship with you. I want to seek you with all my heart. Please reveal yourself to me.”
Have you ever wished you had more time? Or that somehow, time will stop but you can still continue working to meet your deadlines? How do you keep up with the overwhelming demands of your day?
We live in a day and age where there are too many distractions. There’s just so much to do and oftentimes, we wish we had more time. We are often bombarded by responsibilities and tasks that require our immediate attention. As days go by, we start to feel sapped of energy most of the time and then before we know it, we are already burned out.
How do we regain our strength? The Bible assures us that though our heart and flesh may fail, still God is the strength of our heart. Yes, we may be burned out from time to time but God sustains us when we are weak. He is our strength and shield and He always helps us because He cares for us. He cares about even the tiniest detail of our day. It is God who arms us with strength and keeps our way secure. He satisfies us with good things so that our youth is renewed like the eagle’s. He longs to give us good things but even in bad times, God never let go. He patiently walks us through renewal and strengthening.
Therefore, let us fix our eyes on Jesus and acknowledge that in Him, we can do all things because He strengthens us. As we gaze into His beauty and majesty and become more aware of His presence, our hearts become filled with joy and it strengthens us. As we put Him first on our daily schedule and spend the best time of our day with Him, we get the assurance that all the other things concerning our day will be taken care of and added to us. Each day that I spend quality time with God and soak myself in His Word before anything else, are the days that I am most joyful, kind, peaceful and productive.
Philippians 4:13, Nehemiah 8:10, Psalm 46:1, Psalm 73:26, Psalm 28:7, 2 Samuel 22:33, Psalm 103:5, Matthew 6:33
God’s plan is not to harm us but to prosper us and give us hope and a future. He sent Jesus so we may have life and live it to the full. He doesn’t want us to live another day defeated and miserable.
Trials and setbacks are inevitable, yet we can choose to put our trust in God and hold on firmly to His promises. Let us take Him by His Word and trust that He is able to work all things for our good, even those that breaks us, for we are called according to His purposes.
Indeed, we are called to be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer. In the midst of struggles and grief, where should we put our hope in? In God alone, because He is an ever-present help in times of need. He’s the One who never left our side. He will never turn His face away from those who earnestly seek Him.
When the discouragements and difficulties threaten to knock us down, we should return to our fortress, as prisoners of hope because God promises restoration and renewal. God is the only one who can make the valley of trouble a door of hope. Let this joyful hope be an anchor for our soul, both sure and steadfast so that nothing can move us, not even life’s greatest testing.
1 Corinthians 13:13, Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 5:5, Romans 8:28, Romans 12:12, Psalm 39:7, Hosea 2:15, Hebrews 6:19
Let us be tenacious and don’t let anything move us. Tenacity means continuing despite the obstacles and discouragement. It is refusing to give up when things are getting tough. It is not allowing any circumstance to shake us. Though we may be hard-pressed on every side, we will not be crushed. We may be persecuted but God will never abandon us. We may be struck down but our enemy will not be able to destroy us. Let us stand firm in the faith, courageous and strong knowing that God is fighting our battles. We are victorious in Him!
God is patient and slow to anger because He doesn’t want us to perish in our sin. He leads us to repentance and not to a broken fellowship with Him. Even when we choose to walk away, He still patiently awaits for our return. The Father of the prodigal son threw a feast for him when he returned home. The Shepherd left the 99 sheeps just to find the missing one. God’s hands is never too short to reach us. His unfailing love pursues us relentlessly.
Faith comes by continously hearing, meditating and living out the Word of God. The more we soak ourselves in the truth of God’s word, the more our faith increases. Faith is confidence in things we hope for and asssurance of things we are yet to see. It is believing that God is still good even when tragedy comes to us. It is refusing to give up when life is hard because God says He has a plan to bless us and give us a bright future. It is standing on our identity as His masterpiece even when the world shouts that we do not fit in. It is believing that He loves us even when nobody does.
God longs to restore the dead places in our lives. No matter how dried up and worthless we may feel, or how dead in trespasses and sins, God can restore us to life through His Word and Spirit. God’s Word and His Spirit can bring life to any situation and to any soul no matter how utterly dead and hopeless it might be. Nothing is too hard for Him. What may appear hopeless and dead to us is a field full of possibilities for the Lord.
Is it possible to remain joyful even when facing trials, difficulties or even loss of a loved-one? The Bible admonishes us to consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds because we know that the testing of our faith produces perserverance. May we become more aware of God’s presence so we can rejoice in Him always, so we can experience such joy that cannot be taken away by difficult circumstances or social injustice that exist in this broken world. The joy of the Lord gives us strength, peace and comfort to get through the difficult times.
I thank you God for today
For giving me another special day
I’m grateful for this life that You’ve given me
In everything, you are God Almighty
You are all that I need
My soul longs for you indeed
Great is your faithfulness
Your love is so earnest
Thank you God for saving me
From the grip of the enemy
Once, I was living in misery
But you delivered me and now I am free
My heart sings praises to you
Because of the joy and peace that are found in you
Your love for me is unfailing
It’s from everlasting to everlasting
You are true to your Word
Since the foundation of the world
And so I hold on to your promises
In them, I found strength and wholeness
Help me fix my eyes on you
To live and move and have my being in you
I trust you with all my heart
In your presence I will never depart