As I walked the streets of Makati…

As I walked the streets of Makati, I remember what it was like to be part of this bustling area of the Metro. People were in their best corporate attire and everyone seemed to be busy with what was going on with their lives. I remember I was excited when I first started working here. I felt like my dreams were just within reach if I just worked hard to achieve my corporate goals. I loved wearing my corporate attire which made me feel important and on top of the world. I could say that I was somehow blessed with my 4 year stint in the corporate scene. Almost every year, God would bless me with a promotion and after working for just over two years, I was given the challenge to manage a team and rise immediately on the corporate ladder. I know I didn’t have enough experience at that time but I was up for the task. I learned a lot while working for a big corporation. I will never forget the places I visited, the projects I handled and my bosses who have mentored me.

Travel Photos

But in the midst of a good career track, I know there was a different calling for me. I thought being able to travel for work was the best thing that could happen for any individual just starting on their career. But those times that I was away from home and in another country would leave me longing for something – longing for the people close to my heart: my family, friends (church, high school, college, etc.) and Dgroup. And most of all, it left me longing to serve in ministry.

To make the long story short, I was suddenly lead by God to join a small company that was just starting up. It was a humbling experience for me when I left my managerial position to take a different path in my career. I will not go into further details anymore but this I can confidently say: It was all worth it! I now have a better schedule, which I have good control over. I have enough time to do my ministry. I no longer have to travel and be away from the people I love. And financially, I can say that I have enough and sometimes even more. Don’t get me wrong, there was nothing entirely wrong with my previous job that’s why I stayed there for 4 years but God just had other plans for me.

I just want to briefly share in this post that life may not necessarily go the way you expect it to be. But as long as you are in step with the Lord, He will take you through and show you what life is really supposed to be about. It’s not about what the world has to offer. It’s really just about having God and finding contentment in God. He led me to give up my corporate dream but in return, I have received more. I have found contentment where I am right now just because I have Him. And I know that’s life! Living rather than just existing, with the Lord by your side. May you find peace and contentment in Him – it is all worth it!

What is Abundant Life?

Can we add another hour to a day? Rather than having 24 hours a day, can it be 25 instead? Why just an hour? If some would have their way, they would probably request for more time in a day. Isn’t this how most individuals feel?  As if time is ticking by so fast when there are still so many things we need to do or want to do. We want to travel. We want to learn to play the guitar. We want to stay healthy.  Staying home during weekends seems to be a big “No-No”, especially when you’re single.  Why stay home when you can mingle? That’s life for us. We might have a lot of things that we want or plan to do, but the question we should answer is: with all the things I am doing or I want to do, how do I ensure I make the most out of every opportunity? When it’s time to assess your life, can you confidently say “I am living an abundant life”? What is abundant life?

Jesus said in John 10:10 – “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10, NASB)

Jesus came so that you may have life. But for you to have an abundant life, you need to actually have life first. And the life that is being talked about here is not the physical life we have right now, but our spiritual life or condition. We are spiritually dead because of our sins.

 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned — Romans 5:12. And you were dead in your trespasses and sins - Ephesians 2:1.

By nature we inherited sin, which in essence means we are spiritually dead. We are not sinners because we sin, we sin because we were born sinners

Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me – Psalm 51:5

At one point in our lives have we not lied? Slandered someone? Lusted? Or harboured anger and bitterness? Jesus came to die for you, that your sins might be paid for. Because the penalty for sin is death.

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord - Romans 6:23

Jesus paid for your sins by dying on the cross Through one man, the whole human race was condemned and plunged into sin, but through this last Adam, salvation was provided for the whole world – 1 John 2:2. With that sacrifice, you are now alive through Christ and can have a life with a relationship with Him

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved) – Ephesians 2:4-5. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive – 1 Corinthians 15:22.

Through Jesus you can be spiritually alive. But that is just the second part of what He wants for you. He wants you to have life and that life should be spent with a deep intimate relationship with Him. You are not merely to live, be saved and just go to heaven after your assigned time in this world. You are not just to sojourn or pass by this world without experiencing this relationship with him (Romans 8:14-15) There is more to just living that he wants you to experience and understand. This abundant life is not based on material possessions, financial capability or resources. This is an abundant life where Jesus is all you need. Jesus longs to give you the best in life and you can only truly experience an abundant life through a relationship with Him.

The Apostle Paul is the greatest example of someone who has lived an abundant life. Paul suffered a lot – imprisoned repeatedly, flogged severely, and even exposed to death. Five times received the forty lashes minus one, three times beaten with a rod, once stoned, three times shipwrecked and a lot more. And despite of everything he has gone through, he lived life knowing the secret to being filled and having abundance. Why? Because he understood that a life of abundance is only possible through Jesus. That he can do anything (Philippians 4:13), be anywhere, experience whatever as long as He has Jesus.

It’s not about the quantity of what you have, but the quality of your existence.

A life of hope, peace, love and contentment. This is a life where His love is manifested and experienced every day that it overflows with your every action. You were created to experience Jesus in your life! We shouldn’t find satisfaction in simply knowing that we are already spiritually alive, we need to take the necessary steps to develop an intimate connection with Jesus. You won’t find true contentment by having an “as long as I know I’ll be going to heaven, I’m fine” attitude.  You can’t live abundantly if you lack the motivation to know Jesus more.

Jesus Christ wants to come in and be part of your life. But you need to respond! After all, we are to walk and abide with Him (John 15:1-17). Get to know Christ more and include him in every part of your life. You can do this by going back to the basic spiritual disciplines:  prayer, fellowship and studying the bible. Because in the end, desiring to live life with Him each and every step of the way is what makes an abundant life.

So are you living the abundant life?

Note from the author: This is an excerpt from my message in B1G South Connect entitled “God wants best – Embrace It”. The B1G South ministry is the singles ministry of CCF Alabang. We have service every Saturday at 6pm at the 3rd floor of CCF Alabang. Everyone is invited! I would love to meet you if you have time to visit.

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