Dreams, faith, sermon notes

Bread vs Cake

The other day, I woke up to a dream. It’s a bit hazy now, but what I do remember was this: I had a choice between pieces of bread (pan de sal) and a small cake. 

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I just realized this morning what it means. It could have been a reminder of the choice between Christ versus the flesh. 

God can also be assuring me that: when you choose Me, as you press into, and chew on My Word, delighting in Me and pursuing My righteousness, behold My provision. My Word and My ways are inseparable. 

I am reminded of the message last night in Windwatch Makati on how riches follows as a natural consequence of pursuing God’s righteousness above all else. 

The message led me to remember and repent from the times when, in the face of decision-making, instead of asking, “what will please You, Lord?”, top of mind was “which is the better alternative, Lord?”. While both questions sought the Lord’s counsel, the focus and premise of one question differed from the other.  The first question focused on delighting in the Lord and delighting Him (yes, we are accepted in Him, but bringing Him pleasure and delight is another thing). On the other hand, the focus of the second was more of self. It was a Christian way of asking: what’s better (or in it) for me?

This encouragement is so precious to me at a time when my husband is in between jobs (making me the sole income earner), and aside from the normal bills, we have amortizations and credit card bills to pay. 

This situation is no stranger to us, as we have experienced something similar 8 years ago. Also, after my dad died, I remember times when I had barely enough. Through those, God provided. Otherwise, I wouldn’t even be where I am right now. 

If God was faithful then, and even in the olden times, how could He, faithful through the ages, not be faithful now? Selah. 

And such a great prayer here:

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10155238415126893&id=18332376892

career, faith, Prophetic

After Restoration

Cheers indeed to the strength and vision God gives in this new season!

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Some pabaon, encouragement directly from the Lord:

Look, I am giving all this land to you! Go in and occupy it, for it is the land the Lord swore to give to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and to all their descendants.’”
– Deuteronomy 1:8 NLT

Take possession of the land and settle in it, because I have given it to you to occupy.
– Numbers 33:53 NLT

Look! He has placed the land in front of you. Go and occupy it as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, has promised you. Don’t be afraid! Don’t be discouraged!’
– Deuteronomy 1:21 NLT

Then Joshua asked them, “How long are you going to wait before taking possession of the remaining land the Lord , the God of your ancestors, has given to you?
– Joshua 18:3 NLT
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Thank You, Lord!

So what is the vision? Based on what has been birthed in my heart:

— stay in P&G. This is a season to exercise loyalty. Should the Lord want to promote me, He will. Promotion comes from the Lord.
— an international assignment in an environment, where the Lord wants me to reach the nations for Him
— comfortable living arrangements and provisions for my family and me
— God will use us to provide for people whom He will send to us
— good education for Mike’s and my children

Should He tarry further, a seat in government, as part of the cabinet, BIR or in the Court of Tax Appeals. After all, I’ll just be 55 or so then.

faith, Prophetic

Fast from Fear

Scripture is clear that “doubt” can actually hinder our ability to receive from the Lord those things that we have asked for and have need of (see James 1:5-8). We see through the life and ministry of Jesus that “unbelief” limited the power of God to heal and work miracles (see Mark 6:5-6). The “traditions of men” (doing something because it has always been done that way) when embraced and exalted over the leading of Holy Spirit can actually limit the power of God’s Word in our life (see Mark 7:13).

Negative thoughts are the seedbed in which fear sows the worst of seeds. We see in Paul’s letter to the Philippians how to deal with anxious thoughts, how to turn our worries into worship, how to fast the very fears that produce a negative thought posture and how to feed our faith:

1. Rejoice & Rejoice Again!
2. Pray
3. Give Thanks
4. Meditate on the “Good News”

Philippians 4:4, 6-8 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus… Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word.html?ID=14811

faith, prayer, worship

Struggling with Prayer

I woke up extremely early this morning (like 4:30am Vietnam time!). Initially, I found it difficult to pray. Everytime I find it difficult to pray, it seems to be an indicator that there is something unsettled and unsurrendered within me, because after all, prayer is such a vital need.

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I asked the Lord what was up with me. It dawned on me that pride and its children, self-sufficiency and self-righteousness, were keeping me from praying and wanting to worship God.

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As I asked the Lord how to address that, I felt ushered to put on Christ’s breastplate of righteousness. The effect was drastic, as I felt my heart soften upon being reminded that Jesus lives in me and because of His finished work on the cross, I am the righteousness of God in Christ.

The Lord then began to search me of anxious thoughts (and I had a lot!). Those that came to fore, I brought before His feet in worship.

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Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. – Psalms 139:23-24 (AMP)

dream home, faith

Train of Thought

Shifting one’s thoughts towards a more positive train of thought is such an effective antidote against discouragement. It is very consistent with taking thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ. This entails arresting a thought (i.e. stopping it on its tracks), and rebuking it to align with Christ’s obedience, on the Cross, where His finished work was accomplished.

For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds, [Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One), – 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 AMP

Admittedly, this is a perennial problem of mine: I tend to dwell on the negative and rehearse worst case scenarios in my mind. Inasmuch as this tendency is fueled by some disciplines in my profession (my dad used to refer to this as foresight, but I’d rather adhere to my Abba Father’s truly strategic perspective as He knows the end from the beginning), I would like to believe that I am now less pessimistic compared to my emo highschool self. Yet, there are still times when I succumb to worry, which this stops me on my tracks.

In moments of uncertainty, such as our current challenge, I noticed that I revert to old tendencies. Yet, it is in these moments when I most need the power of the Holy Spirit to align my train of thought to God’s Word, so I can focus on His person (not on circumstances) and in so doing, lift Him up above any challenge. That said, our train of thought should be firmly aligned on the track of God.

TRAIN OF THOUGHT
By Christine Caine

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. – Philippians 4:8

You may have heard the phrase “train of thought.” It certainly is a very descriptive and accurate metaphor for describing the way our minds work. Our thoughts are just like a train; they always take us somewhere. If we want to change our destination, regardless of what area of life we’re talking about, we have to change the thought trains we board.

Often, we don’t realize that we have the ability to make a choice about what we think. But clearly we do, as we are exhorted to set our mind on things above and not on earthly things (see Col. 3:2). This doesn’t mean that negative thoughts won’t enter our minds—if that were the case, there would be no need to consciously choose to set our minds on the thoughts of God.

While I was learning to renew my mind, I discovered that many of the trains of thought I had at that time about God, the people around me, myself and my destiny were completely contrary to what God thinks. They were built on my experience rather than the truth of God’s Word. I knew that I had to make a change: I had to consciously choose what thoughts I would allow to pull into the platform of my mind.

Armed with this knowledge and a firm commitment to exercise my mind muscle, I was ready to go to work. Each time a train of thought that was contrary to the Word of God pulled into the platform of my mind, I would choose not to get on board. Instead, I would purposefully board trains of thought that would take me to the right destination.

This is why it’s so important to read and meditate on the Word of God. If we don’t know what thoughts are contrary to his, how will we ever know what trains to avoid? As I continued to renew my mind on a day-to-day basis (and often on a moment-by-moment basis), I began to notice a change. I started to see this mind shift begin to affect my external behavior and responses.

During this long and often arduous process of renewing our minds, it’s vital that we fight off the feelings of frustration that will inevitably come our way. If we don’t give up, in time we will experience the fruit of this process in our lives.

Point to Ponder

Are you ready to start responding to the circumstances of your life with the strength, faith, and confidence of Christ? Then it’s time to become rooted in God’s Word. When you have the mind of Jesus, you will naturally act like him, too.

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