FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 56

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Share your load

Matthew 18:19 19 Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”

Share your anxieties, worries, fears and blessings with another for prayer. Let us learn to pray for and with one another. This life will not be so lonely and so difficult. Sharing brings encouragement and sharing of experience and help, ideas to resolve problems and challenges. If we join with another in prayer, the Lord will hear us from heaven and answer our prayer. God knows we need help along the way and prompts us to seek help even along life’s way, from fellow wayfarers.

Share a blessing or a worry today. Life will be better.

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Nuggets – A Fresh Start

“That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.” (Ephesians 4:22-24)

Everyone deserves a fresh start. As we start the New Year with resolutions and lofty ideals, it is good to remember that we can all renew our commitment. We can all purpose to gain even loftier heights in our spiritual journey toward Christlikeness. No matter how far we have ascended, we can go farther; no matter how low we have fallen, we can begin again.

How can this be accomplished? As the context of our text teaches, we must go back to school—the school of Christ. “But ye have not so learned Christ; If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus” (Ephesians 4:20-21). “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (Matthew 11:29).

As our text verses explain, we must both “put off…the old man” and “put on the new man,” clearly speaking of our manner of life, just as if we were changing clothes. If we as believers are hanging on to a few old rags, let this New Year see us obey this passage as an act of faith through the living Spirit of God: “Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 13:14).

This act of submission and desire will result as we are “renewed in the spirit [or attitude] of [our minds]” (Ephesians 4:23). The old man will not be removed or changed into the new but will be brought under control. The new man is a new creation of God modeled after Him “in righteousness and true holiness.” “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works” (Ephesians 2:10). JDM

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 55

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Jumping queue

Impatience causes us to jump a queue, being inconsiderate with those who patiently wait. Has it been illegal immigration? buying at the supermarket? getting a promotion? Do distraction and fear that others get ahead of us make us jump the queue with unpleasant tactics and reactions?

Has life made us so impatient that we cannot wait in queue anymore?

Psalm 37: 7 Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. 8 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil. 9 For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth.

We fret and covet the positions which others have achieved by evil design and action. When due to our impatience and insistence the Lord allows us to be promoted, we find the job has opened a can of worms which we have had to clear up. We have had to learn patience in the process and fortitude against the slings and arrows of misfortune. We then ask the Lord why this mess? Would it not have been better if I waited for promotion after the mess had been cleared up?

Waiting in queue to buy food… patience till when it came to my turn when the item I wanted had run out. Can you praise the Lord you did not have the last piece I was aiming for after I heard the Lord spared me from diarrhoea which my friend ahead of me told me about?

May the Lord help me to wait my turn – “to be there for such a time as this” and to be faithful to the cause till it is the Lord’s time for me to step up.

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Nuggets – Loaded with Blessing

“Blessed be the LORD, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” (Psalm 68:19)

As we come to this year’s end, it is salutary for the believer to think back over the days of the year and to meditate upon his blessings. He may, indeed, have experienced defeats and losses, disappointments and injuries in great number. If he is honest with himself, however, the Christian will always have to acknowledge that his blessings far outweigh his burdens. God “loadeth us with benefits,” and is even working in and through all the trials and hurtful things together for our good (Romans 8:28).

In our text verse, the words “with benefits” have been supplied by the translators. Some might, therefore, conclude that the verse could mean that God is daily loading us with burdens instead of benefits. The context, however, assures us that the emphasis is really on His blessings. For that matter, even a burden can become a blessing if we take it as a gift from God for our spiritual benefit.

Therefore: “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” (Psalm 103:2). “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). “Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice” (Philippians 4:4).

He has given us “life, and breath, and all things” (Acts 17:25). Far more importantly, He is “the God of our salvation.” Whatever else we have, or don’t have, in this life, we have the great gift of eternal life, through faith in Christ and His finished work of redemption. We have it every day of the year and are daily ready to meet the Lord, whenever He calls. Each day we have the indwelling presence of His Spirit, the illuminating guidance of His Word, the daily provision of all real needs, and the assurance of His love. He has surely loaded us with benefits! HMM

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 54

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My vocation, my testimony

When your testimony for Christ is your vocation, you will find great purpose, fulfilment and joy. When your testimony is separate from your vocation, then earning a living becomes a struggle when Jesus Christ is not at the heart of your vocation. You may live a double life one while you are working and one when you are witnessing. There is no integration, motivation and you constantly may have to choose between vocation and testimony. Is that possible? Yes but it does not give you full joy. Why is your vocation separate from your testimony? Is it because you are asked to do things which Jesus would not be pleased with? Are you being asked to lie and cheat or pay corruption money which you know are out of bounds for a Christian who lives by the Word of God? I have found that when my testimony is my vocation, then there is no challenge against evil that I cannot stand up against, for there is “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. I Corinthians 10:13.. Praise God He lives within me to walk and talk with me along life’s narrow way, even in my vocation.

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Nuggets – Wonder at the Word

“Thy testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them.” (Psalm 119:129)

Josiah was eight years old when he became king of Judah. His grandfather was Manassah and his father Amon, both evil kings. While it seemed Josiah would follow the same path, he didn’t. “He did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, and walked in the ways of David his father, and declined neither to the right hand, nor to the left” (2 Chronicles 34:2). What made such a difference?

As the text above testifies, Josiah found wonder in God’s Word. When Josiah was a young man (age 26), a godly leader read to him the law (torah), which engaged his soul.

And the king stood in his place, and made a covenant before the LORD, to walk after the LORD, and to keep his commandments, and his testimonies, and his statutes, with all his heart, and with all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant which are written in this book. (2 Chronicles 34:31)
Such was the case of the psalmist. The earlier portions of Psalm 119 declare the good that he had done, but now his soul was motivated. He longed (v. 131) and cried for direction and help from the Lord: “Look thou upon me, and…Order my steps in thy word….Deliver me from the oppression of man….Make thy face to shine upon thy servant” (vv. 132-135).

These unselfish prayers were each coupled with a promise to obey. With his heart and correct behavior involved, the psalmist wept for those who “keep not thy law” (v. 136). When the hearts of God’s people break because of sin, revival comes (2 Chronicles 7:14). HMM III

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 53

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Healer

The Great Physician is Jesus Christ our Lord. He said “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.” John 14:12

Have you done the works Jesus did and even greater things than these? Have you felt ill and asked the Lord to heal you? Do you know someone who needs a touch from the Lord today? As the Lord’s representative you can pray for that person for the Lord to heal. Claim His promise today that you will do as He did and more in His name.

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 110

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Nuggets – True Education

“For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.” (Genesis 18:19)

This is a very important verse comprising the first direct reference in the Bible to what we today would call education, and it is given in connection with God’s approving testimony concerning Abraham. Note that nothing is said concerning degrees or diplomas, the sciences or humanities, school buildings or textbooks.

It does tell us that God’s highest priority in the training of the young is that they learn to “keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment.” Such instruction is the responsibility of the home—not of the government or some educational association. It is to be given in the context of God’s promises and plans (thus in the context of divine revelation) and is to be framed in terms of “commands.”

This is also the teaching of the New Testament: “Fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).

The Bible never refers to “education,” but there are many references to teaching, learning, and instruction. There are no references to teaching under the sponsorship of the government, however. As far as biblical precepts and examples are concerned, teaching the young is strictly a function of the home and the church (this could no doubt include several homes and churches cooperating in the provision of advanced or specialized instruction). Most importantly, all instruction, in every subject, should be governed by biblical criteria, for “all Scripture…is profitable…for instruction….That the man of God may be perfect [i.e., ‘fully prepared’]” (2 Timothy 3:16-17) for the work God wants him to do. HMM

From Days of Praise

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FILIPINO EXPAT ENCOURAGEMENT 52

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Holy Spirit

John 14:16-17
I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.

Does the Holy Spirit abide in you? You know Him because He abides with you and will be in you. If you do not know, ask of Him.

Luke 11:13
If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?”

Reach out to the Holy Spirit who is gentle and will not impose on you. He wants to fill you but you have to ask Him to fill you with the power He promises to live life to His glory.

Begin to day with His refreshing infilling of power and strength to overcome the chnllenges of today.

Holy Spirit please fill and empower me to do exploits with and for you today. Amen.

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