An Open Letter to those who volunteered for Saturday Slow Down

Sometimes it takes years to see what you envisioned before to actually happen.  This is exactly what I realized last Saturday.

B1G South Saturday Slow Down

Last Saturday we launched our Saturday Slow Down sessions. Yearly we plan for an event that would use music to share Jesus to singles. Our first attempt was 2012; the event was entitled “Unplugged.” This was the moment when I was leading the worship team. Most of the band members and singers were new. I remember having so many concerns and issues during that time. It took months to practice songs and the team we’re still learning how to gel and play with one another. We were able to pull it off, but there were so many things to improve. The following year (2013), we did another unplugged session, but it felt like we did so much better last year. When 2014 came, we tried to do something different. We decided to use songs to remind, inspire and challenge believers to make disciples. It was better compared to the past two years, but deep inside of me I know we can do more.

Last Saturday though, was “it” for me. How the event happen is how I really wanted it to happen. It was how I initially envision it when began to plan an event like this back in 2012. The band was great. The program was smooth. The transitions were well practiced, and the message was tied up properly with the song. Overall, I praise God for his grace in allowing his event to happen smoothly. I just like to thank those who have volunteered to help and made this event successful. I know a lot of people sacrificed their time and effort – I thank God for all the volunteers.

Saturday Slow Down B1G South Worship TeamWorship Team, I know it’s not easy to play more than 10 songs. The “Arreglo” of the songs wasn’t that simple also, but all your hard work paid off! Everyone was playing his or her role and no one stood above another. I heard a team. I heard harmony. I saw unity. I’m thankful that everyone took the time to practice and improve his or her musicality. I hope your passion for your craft will not die down, but you will constantly seek to grow and improve more. May you never lose sight that you are given this talent to worship Jesus and to always play for the audience of one.

Production Team, wonderful job on the set design! You were able to create the ambiance that we wanted. The bulbs and lights looked awesome and very relaxing. I know preparing for this event was not easy as well. I know some of you were even working during the holiday. I really want to thank you for your commitment and service. Don’t lose the love for what you do. Don’t lose the focus of doing all this for the Lord. The Lord has blessed you with creative minds and it should all be given back to him.

Saturday Slow Down B1G South Marketing TeamMarketing Team, thank you for conceptualizing the theme of the event. The video was great – as usual. Thank you very much for using marketing skills to promote this event. Right now, we have around 20,000 views for our video. I know it was not easy to shoot a video like that, but as you’ve seen last Saturday, the hard work was and will always be worth it.

Admin and Food Team, your team is always in the background, but you hold an important role in the ministry. Thank you for your team’s effort to handle the registration and provide food for our aching tummies. The chill con carne tasted so good! Thank you for feeding more than a hundred people despite a limited budget. Thank you very much for your help.

B1G South Saturday Slow Down Ushering TeamUshering Team, I can see your team slowly growing. I’m blessed with your heart to welcome and engage our guest. It’s not an easy job. Sometimes you don’t even get appreciated, but I want you to know that I do appreciate what you guys are doing. I see everyone’s effort and contribution. Your team is really valuable and I’m blessed to see you everyone active and growing. Continue to build your team. Continue to be the front liners of love in this ministry.

Prayer Team, your prayers are very valuable and I thank you for always covering us with your prayer. I believe that this event was smooth because of prayers. Prayer is really a very powerful thing and I thank you for being our soldiers on bended knees.

There are other individuals that I want to personally thank, but I know I can’t mention everyone. Just note that I do appreciate and know all the efforts you have given to serve the Lord Jesus Christ. Great is all your reward in heaven. Thank you for everyone who helped. Words are not enough to express how thankful I am to God for everyone’s help and participation.

Philippians 1:3 – I thank my God in all my remembrance of you

The Truth About Finding “The One”

Singles, we have a problem! I like how this meme (jokingly) captures that essence of our problem.

One does not merely find the one

We look for the one. That one person that will make us happy. That one person that we can look at all day. But the problem is, one does not simply find the one.

I hope we can shift our perspective and learn a better principle we need to live by – search inside not outside. Let me clarify that as I discuss, and debunk the “Right Person” Myth.

MYTH #1 – If I marry the right person, everything will be alright.

This is one of the right person myths that we buy into. If I marry the right person, everything will be all right – no more problems, all butterflies and rainbows, in love – forever.

That’s why we want to meet the right one. Another version of the myth goes like this, “when I meet the right person, everything will be alright.”

MYTH #1 (revised) – If I meet the right person, everything will be alright

You cannot put all your hope in that one person because finding the “right person” does not mean that automatically everything is going to be happily-ever-after because each individual has their individual problems. Let’s look at this math equation:

One single person with problems + one single person with problems = High probability of a relationship/marital problems:

One single person with problems + one single person = Medium probability of a relationship/marital problems

One single person + one single person = Low probability of a relationship/marital problems

That’s why we have to think about it this way: the present will be your past which will be present in your future.

For example, how you perform today will affect tomorrow. If you have unfinished work you will be loaded with that unfinished work tomorrow. Your present, will be present in the future

If you are single and you are dealing with commitment issues, anger management or dishonestly, this will all be seen in the future or in your marriage. Or if you are single and you have learned how to love unconditionally, how to be patient and live a life of integrity, this will all be seen in the future or in your marriage as well.

Married people thought that when they get married, it’s going to be a new beginning, a brand new day, and indeed it usually feels that way when you get married. It feel like the past is gone, a brand new thing is coming, we’re moving on and we’re cutting all our ties from the past. That’s what they thought. What they didn’t know is this that their present, became their past, which will show up in their future. That’s why everything will not be totally be alright.

Also, people don’t get that saying “I do” does not mean it magically teachs you how to love, commit, respect and all the other good virtues a marriage needs. That doesn’t not make me un-romantic – it’s just common sense. Promising someone that you will speak Mandarin does not mean you can magically speak Mandarin.

The good things will also be brought into married but the bad things will be brought into as well so not everything will be alright. That’s why meeting the right person, will not necessarily mean everything will be alright.

MYTH #2 – Chemistry is Important in finding the One

They say, to know if she/he is the one there should be chemistry. And when there is so much chemistry, they’re convinced that they’ve met the right person.

So these people get together and they say, “You know you never buy a car without driving it first and you never buy shoes with trying them first.” They get into this intimacy thing going and the physical thing going and the sex thing going, and it feels like it’s the greatest thing in the world. When they’re together, they just stare at each other and go out to eat, drink and have fun. They believe they were made for each other – soul mates. They really believed, that it’s this one of a kind; no one can match this love.

They’re so convinced of their chemistry, so they get together, and they get married. They’re convinced that they’ve met the right person. And since I’ve met the right person, everything’s going to be alright.

But chemistry does not make a relationship work or last.

The problem is, all they had was chemistry. They knew nothing about relationships. The wrong mentality is this: when they meet the right person, I don’t have to be good at relationships because they’re going to be good at relationships, that’s why they’re the right person. I don’t have to be patient because she’s not going to do anything that will make me have to be patient. I don’t have to learn how to love unconditionally because I should not have a hard time loving him/her. I don’t have to get mad because she/he will always try to make me happy

There is a big difference between chemistry and commitment. Commitment deals with character and proper character is need for a relationship to work out. When they have problems. Guess what kind of problems they have? It’s not chemistry problems, they have relationship problems because they’re in a relationship.

But they didn’t do anything to prepare for the relationship because they taught chemistry is needed. They just believed this song in heart – love will keep us alive

Because they thought, it’s the right person myth, if I meet the right person and there is chemistry, everything’s going to be alright. Here is the sad part after all of the problems, they realize “I know what’s wrong with my marriage! I married the wrong person!” That why most 2nd marriages have a higher failure rate than 1st marriages because they do the very same thing again expecting different results. It becomes a cycle.

So instead of spending all your time and energy trying to find the “right person,” intentionally work on becoming the right person. Prepare for your future “right person.”

The Bible doesn’t tell us too much on how to find Mr or Mrs Right, but it does have lots of principles on how to prepare for a relationship. After all, we were created for a relationship but it doesn’t happen accidentally or magically – it takes work, intentionality, research, time, and effort

This is the new rule – Become the person you are looking for, is looking for?

If you want to prepare for a relationship learn how to love the right way and the Bible is super clear on what it means to love:

1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.

Love isn’t a word, it’s a decision that shows into action. Love here means agape – it is a sacrificial and unconditional love

  • Patient
    • Forbearing or long suffering (picture of self-restraint)
    • Never pressures the other person (willing to wait)
    • How patient are you?
  • Kind
    • To show oneself useful
    • To act benevolently
    • Are you caring to the people you are with?
  • Does not envy
    • Does not covet
    • Not Jealous over
    • Do you have a Crab Mentality?
  • Does not boast; not Proud:
    • Not Boastful
    • You don’t always have to be right
    • Learn to admit when you are wrong.
    • Men, learn how to say “sorry!”
  • Does Not Dishonour:
    • Does not behave unseemly
    • Not engaging any person in ungodly activity
    • Doesn’t not start any unwholesome activity
  • It is not self-seeking
    • Considers the interest of others
    • Men, when was the last time you opened the door for someone?
    • Sometimes we neglect the simple things we need to practice
    • Practice selflessness
  • It is not easily angered and it keeps no record of wrong
    • Do not count the mistakes of others
    • Learn how to forgive – forgive and let go.
    • Relationships gets burned by counting faults
  • Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.
    • Never delighting in another person’s unrighteous behaviour, nor join it’s expression
    • Finding great joy when truth prevails in another person’s life
    • Express unshakeable confidence and trust in others
    • Outlast every assault of Satan to break up relationships

These are principles that must be developed and learned over time. Practice these characteristics in every relationship (family, friends, co-workers, and strangers) so that by the time the “right person” shows up in your life, it will be natural for you to do these things.

Best people to practice this is your family. How you treat your family might also be how you treat your family in the future. Practice and prepare. Show love to them. Learn how to develop the right kind of people through them Remember – the present will be your past which will be present in your future.
Stop looking, start preparing.

I know sometimes it’s hard to love and our capability to love can only be strong once we learn how much God loves you. The bible says that God is Love and we love because He first loved us. Immerse yourself in the love of God and allow it to change you. Only through the love of God will be have the capability to love others.

Don’t get hung up on looking for the right one. Be right first. Are you the person you are looking for, is looking for?

Note from the author: This message was adopted from Northpoint Community Church, which is the church Pastored by Andy Stanley. Most of the content is from Andy Stanley’s material.

Its been three years

Its been three years. I’ve been involved in different ministries before but I have never been as immersed as I am right now in a church ministry.

Its been three years…

Its been three years since I started serving in the singles ministry of CCF Alabang.

I remember the first year we re-launched the singles ministry and gave it the name B1G South. Why B1G South? Well, we just wanted to align with the name of the singles ministry in CCF Center, which was B1G, and we just want to be distinguished as the B1G ministry in the South, therefore the name B1G South.

The first year was exciting! There were too many things to expect and everyone looked hopeful about what the Lord can do. It was a time where everyone was on fire to serve. But as I have realized through the past three years, it’s not how you start – it’s how to you end and remain faithful.

True enough as the months and years passed by, slowly you’ll observe who are really those who are passionate about serving the Lord and continuing to run despite so many oppositions.

There were leaders who have said their goodbyes and I will forever be grateful for their heart of service. But there are those who have never said their goodbyes and just left. It’s sad. I hope everyone can give the same passion in serving God just like how it was when the ministry was starting.

crossroadBut the effect of time, failures, frustrations, disappointments, and a lot of other things can really leave a leader tired and worn out. At that time where he or she is at the crossroads of life, a decision should be made. Do you stay or do you go? Do you quit or do you continue to hope and run the marathon? By God’s grace, for the past three years I have chosen to continue to run, and have been trying to run well.

Was there a time where I wanted to throw the towel and quit? I would be lying if I said no. But what made me continue? What made me not quit? Honestly, I could not think of one reason alone, because there’s too many.

I love God too much to quit and exit saying “I quit because I don’t trust You, Lord.” I love the people that God has called me to serve that I cannot abandon my post until such time that I am assigned to another. I don’t want to look back and think what could have been. I want to look back and say I gave it my all – I tried to run the race as faithfully as I can. I want to continue putting my hope in God that I know he will always be faithful and true. I know my God is greater when I am not.

Its been three years…

I haven’t been perfect and there were times I haven’t been faithful to what the Lord wants me to do. But one thing will always remain the same. Throughout those years, the Lord has always been faithful.

My discipler asked us to write our faith monuments. Those times where you saw the Lord’s faithfulness in your life. As flawed individuals, we are very prone to forget. We can easily forget who the Lord is, and what he has done. And these faith monuments should be a reminder to you. When things get rough and you feel like quitting – don’t. Remember who the Lord is, He is faithful. Remember what the Lord has done, He has always been faithful.

This is one of my faith monuments. Throughout those three years, the Lord has been faithful. When he called me to start leading the ministry, I felt so inadequate. I had so many questions in my mind. I had so many fears inside.

I felt like Moses, saying to God “Me, Lord? Are you serious?” “I’m not even capable of preaching yet.” “I don’t know if I am eloquent enough.”

Exodus 4:10 – Then Moses said to the Lord, “Please, Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.”

 

I felt like Jeremiah, saying to the Lord “I’m so young Lord, do you really want me to lead people who might be older than me”

Jeremiah 1:6-7 – 6 Then I said, “Alas, Lord God! Behold, I do not know how to speak, because I am a youth.” 7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am a youth,’ because everywhere I send you, you shall go, and all that I command you, you shall speak.

 

But I felt like Isaiah, saying to God “Here I am. Send me!

There was a conflict inside me, I was scared and felt so inadequate but I felt that this is really what he wants for me. The moment that I reject it and run away from it, I know dissatisfaction will just hunt me. So I said yes to the call and even went full-time after a couple of months.

Its been a year, since I started leading the B1GSouth ministry. Its been three years, since I served in this ministry. It has only been a year since I took over the role as the over all leader and being a leader is not an easy role. But to see lives get changed, all for the glory of God is priceless.

Its been three years…

I will forever be grateful to the one who has called me despite my unworthiness. I will forever serve the One who gave it all. I will forever sing praises to His name; giving Him always the glory He deserves.

Happy third anniversary B1G South. All glory to God alone!

B1G South 3rd Anniv

 

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