Responsibility Outweighs Opportunities

28 05 2013

lord-take-my-hand-and-lead-me-500When I was still new here in Thailand, I was so bored that I persisted in praying to God that He will give me something to do. At first my attention were diverted into earning a  living since most of the Filipinos I met here in Nonthaburi are working. I tried doing that to the extent of doing something which I know was wrong. I indeed got a very short shot at it, I was able to teach but in just a so short period. I didn’t have  a problem with the school neither did the school had a problem with me. They even wanted me to stay but unfortunately the agency doesn’t want it to happen. So, it never did happen, I later on realized that God’s plan was entirely different as to what I have in mind as He said in the book of Isaiah 55:8-9 KJV…

8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.

9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

So, after a couple of years of waiting for God’s plan to manifest in my life it finally came to us 2 years ago. He entrusted to us a ministry that I never dream would be possible especially that we are actually foreigners here in Thailand. God let us open an ACE school ministry, at first we were a bit uncertain since there were so many struggles that we have gone through. However, despite of all the challenges and problems we continued to tread the path that God has lead us. It was then that my family saw God’s goodness and hands in showing us His abundant blessings if we only do His will. I started to be involved in our church activities and ministries alongside with the school. We’ve struggled financially and personally but God was always there to lift us up even when those people whom we trusted turned their backs on us.

Today, my heart and soul is in the ministry that God has entrusted to me there are even times that the thought of leaving such ministry scares me. I can’t understand why i felt that way but God showed me the answer to it. He put me to the test by offering me irresistible opportunities that I would desperately grab if it had been offered to me 2 years ago.  I tried to find a way to work it out but my mind kept on bothering me and the thought of not being able to fulfill my commitment to the people that trusted me bothered me. Here it is two opportunities that offers financial sustenance especially that another member of the family is on its way. The more that such worldly matters pressure me the more that the spirit tells me and asked me this question over and over again. “Did God ever abandon you in good times and bad times all these years?”

That question always leads me back to my senses knowing that for several times God literally showed how He works in our lives, i may not earn as much as some of the Filipinos that are here. but one thing is sure, I am content, satisfied and have that peace of mind that some of these people doesn’t have. most importantly i have my God who I can rely on come what may. Does with boldness and with God’s grace and wisdom I was able to resist and turn down the two opportunities and I also hope and pray that god will continue to strengthen me to resist any opportunities that are still on its way. For me the RESPONSIBILITY that God has entrusted to me outweighs all of the opportunities that this world has to offer, after all our Lord Jesus Christ Himself said this in Matthew 6:33 “But seek YE first the kingdom of God, and all THESE THINGS shall be added unto you.” that promise is good enough for me to hang onto.

My decisions may sound stupid and irrational, but i know that this is what God wants me to do and this is what was God’s plan for me and my family that is why He lead us into Thailand.

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Money Over Ministry

17 05 2013

money_churchI’ve been in Thailand for almost 5 years now and I always wondered as to how it feels to actually have a permanent or a stable job here. I see my fellow Filipinos and Christians earning as much as 30,000 baht a month and there were times that I asked myself as to when will I be able to actually have the same kind of opportunity.

I’ve never asked for anything for myself as well as since my last try in finding a teaching job failed because of lack of  “PAPER”  qualifications, I’ve actually given up to that thought. Until God provided a job for me. We’ve started from scratch and invested a few thousand baht and after that God did the rest for us. I became so attached to what I am doing that even if I am not receiving anything I still find pleasure and contentment in my “JOB”.

There was a point in time that I’ve asked myself, what if there will come a time that an irresistible offer will come my way, will I pack up and leave everything behind and go for the BIG BUCKS rather than working on God’s ministry? So, okay..that crossed my mind and often times I just shrug it off because I thought it is impossible.

Just a week ago, an offer came through my pastor,at first I actually remember declining the Teaching DEMO offer. When my wife heard about it she asked me if how long will it take, I said it’s just for two days and one night since it is going to be in a province here in Thailand.. that would be Sakhon Nakhon. After 4 years of not being able to actually talk in front of students or any Board of panelists I took it as a challenge testing myself if I now have the courage to actually talk in front of these types of people. Thus, I retracted my decision and informed pastor about it.

The DEMO show turn out to be a success despite of some untoward and undesirable events that happened to me personally..I don’t want to get into detail since it was literally GROSS and disgusting. Skipping on some details I’ll proceed to the part where we were already heading back to Bangkok, one of the presenters who were with us got a call from the Boss of the agency who sent us to that Teaching Demo Job. I later on learned that she’ve been offered an office job, we were all happy for her and at the back of mind came a thought “What if I too will be offered a job in the office, will I leave our school ministry and work for them?” I didn’t give much thought to it until we’ve finally arrived home. i was about to sleep when Sally (my wife) told me to call Pastor right away because there is something he wants to talk to me. I said, What? I just arrived and it’s already past midnight, however, knowing that it was our pastor and were the one who gave me the finished job I called him.

It was there that I heard the same offer that has been offered to one of  the presenters, the offer was actually enticing and tempting all i have to do was work in an office with a computer and look for “FARANGS” (Foreigners) who are interested in Teaching Jobs and basically deal with them.  It was a tailor made offer, a kind of offer that literally fit my skills and my capabilities. I couldn’t remember what was actually my answer but I believe I declined right then and there knowing that I have bigger responsibilities in the school.

What was Ironic is that it kept on bugging me and there was this still small voice persuading me and let me think of what I could do with the 20,000 baht a month offer if I work in the agency’s office. It was then that i started feeling the pressure, I was literally torn in two..the desire to finally earn and be able to receive a physical money and at the same time I was worrying about the school, what will happen to it and the people I’ve committed to help.

It’s true I have declined the offer the first time, but later on ideas came pouring in and then the idea of taking the job working as  part-time  and be able to work and continue my responsibility to the school. I was so convinced with the idea that I immediately informed pastor about it, he was naturally happy because as far as I can tell he saw that the job fits me. He then called his Boss and got the approval and he relayed the good news  to me right away. After hearing that supposedly good news I couldn’t  feel any kind of happiness, instead I felt something deep inside me crumbled and was grieved. I felt burdened and my countenance fell, the job was mine and I can actually take it and choose any day I want or even decide to work full time if I want to.

After our conversation, i put the phone back to its cradle with a heavy heart. that particular moment I couldn’t understand why I felt that way. This was what I’ve been yearning and desiring all through the past 4 years, a job that earns and will be able to help me provide  things that I WANT in life. All I have to do was report to the head office and the job is mine, that night i couldn’t sleep and I prayed that God will give me wisdom to decide whether if this is the right thing to do.

You may ask, what was the problem since my deal was actually just for a part time job, I can decide which day should I work in the office. Here is the thing that bothered me during that night, even if I may decide to work part time I am the kind of person who gets attached to what I am doing. The moment that i got hooked to it, it would be very impossible for me to do the other tasks efficiently. That scared the heck out of me, my mind just couldn’t bare the fact that there will come a day when I am totally dedicated to my job that I will finally decide to let go of the ministry that God has entrusted me. it was during this time that i started to look back at God’s goodness to my family, how He took care of us all these years even if it is only my wife who earns a decent and sustainable income. God showed me the times that he was always there and there was never a time that we were WANTING, He was there all the time, His hands and His blessings are visible through the good things that is happening to the School ministry. Who am I not to see and pretend not to be able to acknowledge it…Who am I to turn my back on God when He never did that to me even way back when we were still in the Philippines. it was then that I realized how stupid and how ignorant I am to decide and grab that enticing and tempting offer just to take me away from what I have committed myself into. I know that Pastor’s recommendation was of good intention but i just could bare the fact that I will leave God’s blessings and exchange it for temporal and useless things of these world.

It’s true that there are times that I worry for my kids and for my family, but my God is my Great Provider and He’s been doing that to my family all these years. It was these thoughts that finally gave me the right and final decision, to decline the offer that was presented to me. After I’ve made that decision, that huge lump and heavy feeling that was in my heart was lifted and whether you believe me or not i don’t feel any regret to what I’ve decided. I believe it was a Test as to how strong is my faith and trust towards my God, no matter what will happen in the future…My God got me covered!





Eager As a Child

22 04 2013

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For several months now we’ve been going back and forth to the site where our Fellow Filipinos are working, it is just sad to know that most of their will end their contracts on May and some of them are going home. This will include their Foreman Celso Quina who’s one of the influence when it comes to letting them attend our Bible studies.

Last Sunday afternoon, we forgot to confirm to him that we are going to conduct the Bible study even though we’ve informed them ahead of time  when they have attended our church service  during the Songkran Holiday (Sunday). That was the reason why there were only a few of them who were able to attend the Bible Study since most of them went out to do their Laundry while others have things to attend to. One of those who attended the Bible study shared to us that they were not really expecting that we will be there since nobody called foreman and informed him. He then said that if someone informs their foreman he usually disseminate the information right so that those who got things to do or things to attend to usually cancel their appointments right away and wait for us to arrive. That is why in the previous Sundays there were almost 20 or more who would attend the Bible study. Last Sunday, although there were just a few of them were not as different as the previous ones. When we arrived there they were playing Basketball since they actually built a make-shift Basketball ring, Kuya Bien Anatan who were the one who led the Bible Study let them finish their game first. We started late but it was worthwhile, when the Bible Study started and Kuya Bien talked about the story of the Rich Fool in Luke 12:13-21, I could see that most of those who attended listened attentively to everything that Kuya Bien is talking. Others have their eyes fixed on him listenin

Some of those who were listening to the Bible study were listening just like a child, savoring every word that Kuya Bien is saying as well as the passages that he’s reading from the Bible. The harvest is plenty indeed but the laborers are few, there came a time that I have second thoughts on attending the Bible study last Sunday. But after what I have witnessed I thank God that I didn’t listened to that tempting small voice telling me to just let the others go instead, just  like a child who is eager to hear a fairy tale story.  During these moments one scene from the movie Jesus of Nazareth came to my mind. It was the scene were Jesus was telling the Parable of the Two sonshttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fE78opn-aM8…. You can see how attentive, interested and eager are the children to hear Jesus’s story. Now this is just a portrayal in a movie but I am pretty sure that the scene is not far from what really occurred during the time of Jesus.

I learned a lot as well from the Bible study, I was just not there to assist but to be inspired and listen as well. One interesting person who attended our Bible study was an Indonesian guy, he also came with the group and attended our Special Songkran Sunday Services.  They told us that this Indo guy prefer to hang out with Filipinos than any other Nationalities that are also working in the Site. I believe he could only understand a little of what Kuya Bien was talking about since most of the time He was speaking Tagalog. But every time I look at the guy he was trying to understand and listen attentively to what the speaker is talking about. He told us that he can understand little English only but I know that God can open his mind to make him understand  about Christ and about our God. God willing the next time we go there and since Kuya Bien promised that he’ll be the one who will led the Bible study once again besides I don’t want to break the momentum that he has started among those who attended the Bible study. I will try to talk to the Indonesian guy and tell him about Jesus, I know that God will open his understanding even if he may say that he only know a little English  little is much when it is given to God.





Sow and You shall Reap

17 04 2013

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It has been said that whatsoever thou sowest, that shall also reap. If a person reap kindness in the end He shall also reap kindness, the same as if a person sow hatred or evil, that he shall also reap.

It is amazing how God uses people, ordinary people to bless or be a channel of blessing to His children. With one simple act of kindness that we have shown to Pat, it had made a great impact in his life. it was a long time a go since we have helped this young man but up until today, all he desires is to help us in any way he can. Even if he doesn’t really have that much, he always think about us. Every time he visit us he would always say that once he finishes his studies and become a professional, he’ll help us as well as he will also let us use his name to acquire a license in any kind of venture that we wish to start here in Thailand.

When we helped him, there was no intention of expecting from him or even to think that some day he will be of great help to us. One simple act of kindness, that’s what we all did and until today he keeps on helping us out.

One evidence of this is that after the Songkran holiday (Thai New Year) and after our little escapade at The Mall Ngamwongwan along with Erscil and Sandy, we went home and were watching TV. We heard a knock and when we open the door it was Pat. We’ve missed this young man for a couple of months since we last saw him.  Not that he doesn’t want to visit us but his part time job and studies constrains him from doing such activity. When I asked him what did he do during the three day holiday, he told us that he spent it doing some electrical wiring jobs and cleaning A/C from several clients. Which eventually led him or them with his Boss to our small abode.

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Pat

They were driving the car that his Boss bought from us and inside it was a second  hand A/C. he told us that he’s going to give us the used AC. We didn’t know how to respond and he explained to us why and where he got the AC. He told us that one of their clients had several new AC and they discarded the old one. His boss asked the old one and he also asked it from his Boss. When his boss asked him what he’s going to do with it he said that he’s going to give it to his “honorary family”, that is why brought the second hand AC even if it was already late at night.

What touched me was not the AC that he gave but the act that he is continually showing to us, the concern as well as the kind of love that he is showing us. When he asked me what did we do during the Songkran holidays, I told him we just stay inside the house and watched movies the entire three days. He laughed and then told us that once he will have a spare time he will bring us to Pattaya and Hua Hin for a road trip or a tour. I didn’t expect much from the guy because I know he is very busy with his job and with his studies but I know he’s going to do what he has promised.

It made me wonder and amazed why people who doesn’t have much has the heart to give while those who live abundantly or who has a lot. Here is  a young man who sustains himself through his own effort or by his own, but thinks of others instead of thinking for himself. isn’t it the same characteristic or trait that Christ wants us to follow? Pat has professed a couple of months or early this year, whether he really did receive the Lord Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior that would be between him and God alone. All I know is that I could see a huge change in the life of this young man and I hope and pray that he will grow in God’s wisdom in the fullness of time.





And They Murdered Christ Once More

1 04 2013

downloadThailand’s religion is Buddhism and we all know that, especially those who came to tour, visit or work in this country. We all respect their culture, their traditions as well as their religion, and they respect our belief and give us the freedom to express our own religion in this land.

It is just  sickening and sad to know that the name of Christ by means of claiming a Christian has been lambasted, insulted as well as has been ridiculed, misused and abused by those who claimed to be “CHRISTIANS”. Yesterday, Christians celebrated Easter Sunday or The Resurrection Sunday, it is indeed one of the most glorious as well as ought to be celebrated event that each Christian ought to commemorate after all Christ rose from the grave and is now sitting at the right hand of the Father. Of all the gods of this world, it is only Christ who is the One and only LIVING God.

We were on our way home after our Bible study from one of the construction sites here in Thailand and on the said site most of the construction workers who are working their were Filipinos. They were the ones who are constructing the bridge that will connect the two sides of Chao Praya River here in Nonthaburi, Thailand.

As we were boarding the barge which will cross us to the other side of the River we heard the song “AMAZING GRACE” being sung in a stage beside the River. My children where so happy to hear and listen to the song, so we’ve decided to stick around and find out what was going on. Later on we found out that certain ”CHRISTIAN” group were having a concert.  The moment we got off from the barge the solemn music has been placed by a hip-hop beat and someone was actually rapping in “KOREAN” while at the center of the stage was a young girl in mini-skirt dancing while singing back-up.

I said to myself, WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON?!! The singer/rapper was all over the stage while there were some back-up dancers flipping and doing some stunts. Some young people at the spectators were shouting and screaming while watching the show, it didn’t bother me much though thinking that since they were Koreans they were invited to perform on the stage. From then on, all we could hear were in hip-hop beat and the constant screaming of the idiotic rapper “hallelu-jah”.

What IRKED me is when they were at the middle of their act when one of the participants joined them wearing a long hair wig and with beard. Well I could tell that he was impersonating the image or the portrait of Christ. That person started to dance together with the back-up dancers and then did the Gang-Nam stepping, and the crowd goes wild!!! The young people as well as those around were enjoying to see the Christ-like young man doing the dance step. It was then that we’ve decided that it was enough, what we have witnessed is not a celebration of Christ’s resurrection, it was an open insult to His being God as well as His entire persona. The performers may think that they were pleasing Christ with what they were doing, but in the eyes of my kids they were insulting Him and ridiculing our kings and Savior. My children were bothered with what they’ve just witnessed, at their young age they were wise to determine that what they have seen wasn’t right. During our supper my daughter said that she just can’t get over of what she had seen. It was then that I told them, that what these people were doing were deceiving people. ion order for them to garner large church membership  they do what the world is doing and that is by means of entertainment. They were preaching the wrong Gospel fulfilling what Christ has said in Mark 13:6 “For many shall come in my name, saying , I am Christ; and shall deceive many.” In Matthew Chapter 24: 1-12 it says…

“1 And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.

2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.

3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and whatshall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?

4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.

9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.

10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.

11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.”

It is good that they are sharing the word of God as  well introducing Christ to Thai people, but they are doing it in a wrong way. One cannot use the devil’s method to win someone for Christ not unless they are teaching and preaching a wrong and perverted Gospel or they fall into the category of “FALSE PROPHETS AND TEACHERS” And what was written in Matthew 24:24 “For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.” is finally coming into pass.

The Bible warns us through John the Beloved in 1 John 4:1-6…

1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

5 They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.

6 We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.

Oh! These people who claims to be God’s children will surely give account to every soul that they have deceived and mislead away from the Truth. There will be great disappointment in their eyes when they finally face the One they have ridiculed and made fun of and what was written in Matthew 7:21-23 will surely come to pass..

21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

I PITY THEM…They may have a good intention of spreading the Gospel but the method they’ve used is far from what is expected from how the true believers in Christ would do. May God forgive them for they didn’t know what they were doing, or they do know it’s just that they have their own agenda on winning church membership.





Where is the Love?

11 02 2013


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John 21:15-17  struck me the most in this chapter of the book of John.  It made me realize that even Christ would seek His followers to love Him more, more than the things of this world. Unfortunately, the world is getting glittery and is becoming enticing to the eye. This made most of the Christians today uncomfortable and sadly waver in their Love and commitment to Christ. The Bible says that our God is a jealous God, and this is what Christ has shown to Peter when Peter decided to go back to his old job. Instead of focusing his efforts and his time in fishing souls for Christ. He decided to go back to fishing which was his previous job,career or profession.

It grieved Peter that Christ would ask him three times if he love Him more than his job, it pained him that Christ didn’t believe him the first time that he answered the question. If we ourselves would like to know and be sure that our wife or husband, boyfriend or girlfriend really love us. Christ feels the same way too, the moment we have committed our lives to Him, we have fully surrendered our hearts to him which means He control our lives. The moment we submit to His will, we will surely see the wondrous things that He has in store for use. Unfortunately most of the Christians today lack faith and would rather live for themselves, struggling and doing everything with their own strength and when they fail, they blame God.

Where is the Love indeed? Do we really love Christ? Does He have first place in our heart or the cares, pleasures and riches of this world has choked us and has evicted Christ’s place in our heart?

Christ has given us His assurance that the moment He became our savior that we will have eternal life, now what He needs from us is the assurance that we really love Him and are willing to forsake everything for His sake. Wouldn’t it be ironic if we claim that we love Him and yet it is difficult for us to give for His ministry, dedicate our lives and our time in winning soul and in serving Him?

Christ has been asking this same question that He asked Peter over and over again and we chose to just ignore that question most of the time. If our wife or husband needs our assurance of love and commitment, how much more the very Person who suffered for us on the cross of Calvary. Isn’t it just fitting to show our love to Him, indeed faith without works is dead, as well as it will be impossible for us to believe that our husband or wife loves us if we couldn’t see any effort or good deeds and fruits from us.

The questions keeps on lingering and should be answered truthfully and honestly..WHERE IS THE LOVE my son? WHERE IS THE LOVE? That is God’s question to each one of us today.

“And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.” Matthew 19:29