How Bad Do You Want It?

What do you want? How Bad Do You Want It? This is such a board question that can be answered in so many different ways. Each individual has their own desire within their heart and that desire may have been a result of a situation they experienced before, a dream they always had, or something they saw in someone that they want to attain as well. Bottom line, everyone has desires or wants.

James 4:1-3 talks about a desire that can lead to your ruin. It talks about a battle within you. You want it. You dream of it. You desire it so much that you result to manipulation, you argue for it, or even quarrel with someone to get it.

Think about it. Is it the latest iPhone that you want so badly that you are willing to argue your case with your parents for them to buy it? Maybe, it’s a promotion that you’ve been working for or aiming for that your willing to fight for it even to the point of sabotaging a colleague’s reputation so there’s less competition in the workplace. Or arguing your case to God, in prayer, that what you desire is something you deserve. Isn’t that what James 4:2 is telling us?

..And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it.

No, the reason you are not getting what you want is because while asking you have a wrong motive – James 4:3. The desire that you have is fueled by passion and love for the worldly things in life, which God considers adulterous. Because in your relationship with Him, you are not to desire anything else that may take your eyes away from Him. You are to desire Him alone. His spirit within you tells you, “I am already enough for you.” Why look for anything or anyone else?  Why be unfaithful?

…the Holy Spirit, whom God has placed within us, jealously longs for us to be faithful? (James 4:5)

There is a promise that we can hold on to. Despite the raging battle inside of us because of all the worldly desires we have – we can overcome it through His grace. But you need to realize first that you cannot control it on your own. You need to humble yourself before God that He may give you the strength that you need to overcome it.

He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires. As the scripture say, “God sets himself against the proud but he shows favour to the humble.” (James 4:6)

What are we now to do?

First, you need to humble yourself before God

Ask for strength, through his grace, that you may be able to overcome your worldly desires.

Second, resist the temptation

When you’ve realize that you need God’s help then that’s the time you need to do your part of resisting the devil’s temptation to lure you into that worldly pleasure. And the bible makes it clear in James 4:7, “he (Satan) will flee from you”.

And third, draw near to God

This is not a one-time thing. You need to constantly do this to be able to ensure you remain faithful to Him and only have Him as the apple of your eye. You need to regularly spend time with Him. And as you draw near to Him, there is another promise again – He will also draw close to you. He will show you that, indeed, what you really just need is him to complete and satisfy you.

Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you… (James 4:8)

As an ending question: again, how bad do you want it?

Unplug your Night! | B1G South Unplugged 2012

I already had people in mind, which I was hoping to take the challenge, when I opened the floor to those who wanted to join the praise & worship team. But things went differently than what I expected.

He brought me mostly people who were volunteering for the first time. This required lots of training to develop musicality and rehearsals to ensure team cohesion. But all the efforts and time sacrificed was worth it! I saw the team growing closer together. I saw individuals improving in their area of responsibility whether it’s prompting (singing) or playing an instrument. Most of all, I saw God was working in and through us

Especially with all the things being prepared for the B1G Unplugged event later, we saw how God has remained faithful and has helped us finish all the tasks we need to complete.  We saw how He is moving and what better way to offer a song of praise other than on the event itself.

As the worship team continues to prepare for the songs – we are also preparing our hearts. So when the bell rings and it’s our time to perform we’ll only have one thing in mind – we want to give glory and praise to our God alone.

I am once again inviting everyone to the B1G South Unplugged 2012 event later (September 22, 2012) at 6pm in 3rd floor, CCF Alabang. Tune in and unplug from the world. Together let’s celebrate God’s love and goodness on Saturday!

The Shadow I want to Run away from

I tried. I tried separating myself but my shadow still follows me. I tried outrunning it but it was still there. I don’t know what to do. How can I separate myself from the shadow that still follows me?

We have that part of ourselves were we try to constantly change and improve. We have that dark side (that shadow) that seems to follows us because of our past. We know that we are a new creation because of Jesus Christ but still, we see bits and pieces of our old self. It frustrates us. It discourages us when we feel we gave so much effort already but it’s still not enough – I still can’t seem to overcome this struggle.

As I continue my reflection on Hebrews 12, I want to focus more on verses 4 to 13 where the book is talking about God disciplining His children. When we hear the word discipline we immediately draw the conclusion that we might have done something wrong that’s why we are being discipline. But the discipline that is being talked about in Hebrews 12 is related to hardship, as verse 7 stated “endure hardship as discipline”.

Therefore with whatever hardship and trial we encounter that can be considered as God’s discipline. But Hebrews 12 doesn’t pin point hardship as discipline only without any reason why we are experiencing it. The answer is in verse 6, 10 and 11. We experience this hardship (discipline) because God loves us and wants what is good for us. The good that He wants for us is not necessarily how we envision it: a good job, a car, a house or even a relationship. He has always been more concerned with our character. That is why in verse 10 mentions about us sharing in His holiness and in verse 11 about us having a harvest of righteousness as a result of the discipline.

My shadow (struggle), which I have been trying to separate myself from, is part of my hardship. I can decide to be frustrated and quit trying to be a better person or I can look at it differently. I choose to respond properly. I hold on to his word that this hardship is because he loves me and he wants the best in me. He has been working in my life and continues to. He continues to push me to become a better person, man, and leader. I want to embrace that. I want to grow and produce a harvest of righteousness in it.

I pray that if you are going through hardship as well, you will find peace in Hebrews 12:4-13. I pray that together we will be able to say.

I will strengthen my feeble arms and week knees. I will make level paths for my feet  (a response to verse 12 and 13).