Saturday, October 06, 2012

Behind a Mask

I believe that personality is more important than appearance. You should not judge a person by their exterior because in our eyes, just because they are different, we immediately think that they are weird or ugly, but sometimes once you get to know that person, you realize that they are sweet and friendly. Proverbs 31:3 states that beauty is deceiving but he who fears the Lord shall be praised. There are those who are blessed with more outward beauty than others, but they abuse their blessing by having bitter hearts. I am ashamed to say that I used to follow those types of people. I wanted to be as popular and cool as them and little by little, I was getting far from God and closer to the world. I praise the Lord for letting me see that! When picking a close friend, you should always see if they are going to help you get closer to the Lord. Most potential friends are harmless. Some are entertaining, funny, and studious, but if the friend you choose is not born again, he will lead you away from God. Choosing a friend based solely on their appearance will not help you inwardly. The Bible says in I Samuel 16:7 that the Lord looks at the heart unlike man who looks at the outward appearance. As a child of God, I am striving to become more like Christ and looking at that passage, I realize that I should also look at the heart, not just other people’s hearts but mine too. If we have hearts that love the Lord, then that love will shine brightly through in our appearance and actions. We will not be dressing, talking, and acting like the world. Unfortunately, personalities can be as deceiving as the outward looks. No one knows a person’s true heart except for God. We just need to depend on the Holy Spirit to help us discern from the right and wrong types of people. 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

God Strengthens

This past week was the first week of school. It was quite overwhelming. I had a lot of homework that stressed me out.
To top all of that, I received some news from the Philippines. It was a shocker. Through tears, I realized that God has a plan for me. All the homework I get will prepare me for His will for me in the future. And this unexpected news showed me how much we need to cherish every moment and use our time here on earth for Him. God tests our faith. This news turned my attention back to God. I need to trust in Him and not myself for help in everything, whether it be school or trials and temptations.
Please pray for me to trust in God this school year.
Thank you.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Happy 4th! ~ from an American girl

I can truly be proud that the United States of America became independent on July 4, 1776 now that I am an American citizen.  I praise the Lord for letting us become citizens on November 10, 2011.  My parents had applied for citizenship around July last year and God smoothed out the process.  I am a Pinoy (Filipino) at heart still but America takes a big part of my heart also.

Happy 4th!
Thank you for everyone who is serving and protecting this country.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

My Own Battles...

During the school year, my friends (I am not so sure if they should be... they don't exactly help me become more Christ like) asked me what I thought about The Battle for Christian Music by Tim Fisher, the book we were reading in music appreciation class.  I told them that I wanted to learn what Tim Fisher had to say about music.  When I said it though I didn't seem interested outside... I was scared that they would make fun of me for being eager about it.  That was really dumb of me.  I should've stood for my faith and accepted that as a true child of God, I will get persecuted.  I really want to learn what the right music is.  I want to learn how to identify music in categories.  One of the temptations I have been trying to conquer is singing worldly music.  It's hard for me to say this but yes, I'm no perfect goody two shoes. Any music I hear (especially from tv or stores) gets stuck in my head.  Music is not neutral and when I sing certain songs, they make me feel good and happy.  But is God happy with what is coming from my mouth and heart?   No.
We've got to remember what brings joy to our Father in heaven.
One of my friends mentioned to me that she liked a certain CCM song and I scolded (not really... I was smiling the entire time... I just don't know how to be firm and guiding at times) her and she just mocked me (and God) that "oohh.. she was sinning".  At that time, I only smiled even though I wanted to say, "Yes, yes you are."  I was just scared of what she would think of me... there I go again=/  I really need to stand for my faith!
Please pray for me as I decide on my friendships, battle temptations, stand for my faith, and bring glory to God.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

Beautiful People

"We all, with open face beholding as in a lass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory."  II Corinthians 3:18

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be one of the "beautiful people"?  Fans swarming the stage.  People asking for your autograph.  The satisfaction of accolades and trophies.  The rush of knowing that others imitate the way you walk, dress, and speak.  What a life that would be!
Photo Credit: FotoSearch

But perhaps that lifestyle isn't quite as glamorous, as we might think.  Consider what it would be like to have photographers hound your every step, hoping to catch you in less-than-beautiful activities.  Think about the hassle of having to wear a disguise at the ballpark or your favorite restaurant.

Being one of the "beautiful people" comes at a price.  Many celebrities hire bodyguards to keep the adoring public at arm's length.  Most live behind secure gates in homes protected by surveillance cameras.  Being beautiful means being very careful about associating with others.

In contrast, out beautiful Savior welcomes us into His presence- always!  Jesus doesn't hole up inside a secure compound or wall himself off behind impenetrable security.  No, he enfolds us in His grace, inviting us to come close and to stay close, forever!

As Jesus lived here of earth, He made Himself accessible to all who came to hear the message of God's unending love for them.  He healed the sick.  He touched the lepers.  His inexhaustible mercy made Him beautiful beyond words in their eyes.

Still today,  Jesus is present with us, accessible at any and every moment.   We can call out to Him with any need, any concern.  He gladly invites us to spend time with Him, to share our lives with Him.  He longs for us to stay near, to nestle close to His heart secure in His love.

What's more, the more time we spend with Him, thinking about His acceptance, pouring over the promises in His Word, reflecting on His compassion, the more like Him we become.  We are transformed- changed- into His very image, with ever-increasing glory.

~taken from Reflecting the Beauty of the Lord, 25 devotions for women

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers' Day!

I love my mom. 
She is the most caring person I know.  When I'm not in a good mood, she cheers me up by cooking up something delicious or taking me shopping.  Her heart is just full of love!
This school year, I got the Outstanding Scholar award and everyone congratulated me for the good grades I got but you know, it's not only me who did all the hard work.  First of all, God gave me the strength and patience for this school year.  My parents worked so hard to get me into the school I'm in.  And my mom took her time, even when tired after work, to quiz me.  
When I was little, she held me close, rocked me gently to sleep while singing me a lullaby.  
She was patient (and still is!) when I misbehaved and disobeyed her.  
Even though I hated spanking, I thank my parents now for those corrections.   
She has taught me many valuable lessons including how to make rice, coffee, make my bed, and of course be more like Christ.  
I thank the Lord for my mom! 
Proverbs 31:28
"Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her."

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Stand for Your Faith

Today we had to write Hebrews 10:11-25 from memory in Bible class.
I knew them very well but when I got up to verse 22, I missed a phrase and had to rewrite it and when I went on to verse 23, my brain totally froze.  (I just guessed in the end.)
You know, God uses everything to influence our way of life.
I will remember verse 23 for a long time because I missed it.
"Let us hold fast to the profession of our faith without wavering (for he is faithful that promised)."
God used that one brain freeze to tell me "You need to stand for your faith, Abby, not just for a little while, but forever without wavering, because I am faithful to you!"
That hard moment during the test also reminded me not just to trust on my memory skills but to trust in God because He gave me my memory.
I thought I would finish first because I usually do but God let my pride fall.
-Proverbs 16:18
"Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall."
-Matthew 19:30
"But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first."

-Let us stand for our faith in God without wavering.

Friday, April 20, 2012

-Impress:  Make (someone) feel admiration and respect; affect or influence deeply. 

A few years ago, I tried to impress this guy in my grade.  He wasn't exactly very Christlike- I wasn't even sure if he was a born again believer.  He always got into trouble, but I looked past that and focused on his looks. (Later, I applied the knowledge that the heart is more important than outside appearance. *I Samuel 16:7, "But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.") 

One day, he made fun of this other person while chatting with me and later, I told the person about it.  Then, that person told the teacher and the guy and I got into trouble even though I wasn't the "original sinner". All throughout that year I was miserable- I tried to please the guy, others, and become popular.  I got into a lot of trouble because I kept focusing on my goal of pleasing others and becoming one of them.  My only goal now in life is to please God and accomplish His will for me.  As one of the preachers said here at school, you shouldn't focus on the secondary things like "What car should I buy?" or "Which college should I go to?"  Just follow the will of God- that's easier said than done, but if we just all read the Bible and meditate on the clear commands of God, we are taking a huge step and God will lead us in our decisions with the secondary things in life.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Special Day!

Today was my birthday!
I didn't have a special celebration but just finishing and having another year is great:)
It was pretty fun at school today. Some of my friends got me birthday presents and cards and them doing that was really sweet.
I can't wait to see what God has in store for me this year. No matter what He'll bring me, I'm sure He will always be by my side.
Please pray that I'll make the right decisions about my friends, hobbies, and other things.
I don't want to grow just physically with age but also spiritually~

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Amazing Love of Christ

And Can It Be

by Charles Wesley

And can it be that I should gain
an interest in the Savior's blood!
Died he for me? who caused his pain!
For me? who him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be
that thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be
that thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

'Tis mystery all: th' Immortal dies!
Who can explore his strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
to sound the depths of love divine.
'Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
let angel minds inquire no more.
'Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
let angel minds inquire no more.

He left his Father's throne above
(so free, so infinite his grace!),
emptied himself of all but love,
and bled for Adam's helpless race.
'Tis mercy all, immense and free,
for O my God, it found out me!
'Tis mercy all, immense and free,
for O my God, it found out me!

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
fast bound in sin and nature's night;
thine eye diffused a quickening ray;
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
my chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed thee.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in him, is mine;
alive in him, my living Head,
and clothed in righteousness divine,
bold I approach th' eternal throne,
and claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach th' eternal throne,
and claim the crown, through Christ my own.