Hard to Forgive? This Might Help You…

Have you ever found yourself hard to forgive others sometimes? What do you think is contributing to this difficulty in forgiveness? The part of the person we are looking at that fills our heart and mind would affect our sense of forgiveness.

Remember that man as a free moral being can do good or bad, right or wrong. He can never live a sinless life (Rom. 3:23). He can neither live a life without doing right or good at all (Ecc.7:29). It is sad to say though that it is easier for us to remember the mistakes that one has done than the many good things that he has done in his life. If we will only think of the wrong that our offender has done to us, our heart and mind will only be filled with anger and hatred; therefore, it would make us difficult to forgive him. But, if we will consider and think more of the good things that he has done to us or to others than his mistakes, then it would be easier for us to forgive him.

David is a good example of this attitude toward Saul in the book of 1 Samuel. Saul persecuted and tried to kill him in all of his life. David was given two opportunities to kill Saul in chapters 24 and 26, but he did not do it. Aside from being respectful to Saul as his father-in-law and loyal to him as the anointed of God, he may have also thought and considered the many good things that Saul had done to him, which made him not to stretch out his hand against him.

Therefore, to make it easier for us to forgive those that have done wrong to us, let not their mistakes prevail in our heart and mind, but the many good things that they have done to us or to others. We need to remember that we, too, have done wrong to others and coveted their forgiveness just as our offenders are coveting our forgiveness. Finally, let us bear in mind that if we do not forgive, neither our Father in heaven will forgive our trespasses (Mark 11:25-26).

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New, But Actually Old?

The title sounds paradoxical, isn’t it? However, there is truth in it. Let me make myself clear so that you can follow my line of thought. First, let us define the word “new.” The word “new” is an adjective and has different meanings. One of its meanings is “having existed before but only recently discovered.” Second, let me use some illustration to make a clear-cut point. Our acquisition of knowledge from the time that we started to learn until now, either from the school, or from any learning institutions, all the facts and knowledge that we are learning have already existed before, and we are just discovering them.

Have you ever thought why others are knowledgeable than you do although you are studying the same area of knowledge? The truth is they have learned or discovered earlier the information or facts than you do. Even in biblical knowledge, it is true that some are knowledgeable than others because of their constant reading and studying of the Scripture for a long while. However, there is no such new knowledge that one has ever discovered from the Scripture, as some were claiming, that others would not be able to discover.

But this is what I would like for us to focus upon. In John 13:34-35, Jesus said, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” In what sense that this was a new commandment? Does it mean that there was no command of loving one another in the Old Testament? No. In Leviticus 19:18, there was already a command for loving one another. So this command was new, but actually old (1 John 2:7-11). It was new in the sense that it serves to be our model and standard in loving one another today.

In this New Year forward, would you also make this new, but actually old, as your model and standard in loving the people around you?

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Where Will Be Your Focus On That Day?

Where Will Be Your Focus On That Day?.

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Goodbye Worry!

Goodbye Worry!.

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Where Will Be Your Focus On That Day?

Are you excited for the coming event next Sunday? The most anticipated celebration in the year will be observed on that day. It is “Christmas Day”! Perhaps, you have already bought gifts that you would give to your loved ones and friends. Maybe, you have been figuring out what are the gifts that you may be receiving from your special someone, spouse, parents, children, and others. Probably, you have already listed the things that you will do on that day. You can’t wait anymore for that day to come—it is “Christmas Day!”

With all these things in your mind on that day, how are you going to worship God? If the church leadership would ask the consent of the whole congregation whether to hold the church services on that day or not, what will be your vote? If you will attend the church services on that day, where will be your focus? Will you be able to close your eyes and follow the brother who will lead the prayer or you would use that opportunity to think farther of your plans? Will you be able to partake of the Lord’s Supper and think of Christ’s sacrifices or you will think of the gifts that you are about to receive? Will you be attentive to listen to the message of the Lord or you will think of the things that you would do after the services? Will you be able to manage to talk first to your brethren even in a little while or you will be out of the door right after the services? These are the things that each one of us has to consider every time we worship God, especially next Sunday, December 25th.

Our focus on that day will determine if we are truly remembering the Lord. Our attitude and actions on that day will reveal who is truly the center of our lives. Let us not therefore allow our own interests on December 25th to take our focus away in worshiping God in spirit and truth (John 4:23-24).

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Take Heed People Are Watching You

In the field of sports, do you notice anything between Tim Tebow and Manny Pacquiao? Yes, they are both good and popular sportsmen. But there is something more other than that. Both of these guys are displaying the same kind of attitude whenever they are playing. They both kneel down and pray before and after the game. Because of this attitude, people have learned to admire and love them.

On Sunday, Denver’s religious communities rallied around Tim Tebow as he led the Broncos to victory against Chicago. One of the religious leaders who were interviewed recently concerning Tebow’s kneeling in prayer was Khaled Hamideh. He says, “I know I’m a Muslim and he’s a Christian, but I admire somebody who thanks God for everything that he gave him. The team has rallied around him not because of his religious beliefs but because they believe this guy has something in him that pushes him the right way.”

Also, in the Los Angeles Times sports report, after the fight of Pacquiao and Marquez in November, Lance Pugmire wrote, “While Marquez, 38, briefly basked in the celebration of an apparent triumph after the 12th round, lifting his right fist to the air as if to forever puncture the cloud of close-call shortcomings versus Pacquiao, the Filipino superstar retreated to his corner to kneel and pray.”

These guys are demonstrating the power of example. They draw people to want to watch them always when they play because of what they show. My son comes to my mind because of this. One time when we went to eat into my father-in-law’s house, he says, “let us pray first before we eat because that is what we do at home.”

Yes, we can lead many to God through the power of our examples. Paul then urges us that “in all things show yourself to be an example of good deeds, with purity in doctrine, dignified, sound in speech which is beyond reproach, so that the opponent will be put to shame, having nothing bad to say about us” (Titus 2:7-8).

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Goodbye Worry!

I counted the weeks that we have been through at the school in this Winter Quarter 2011. I found out that we are already in the middle of it. Midterm exam is scheduled this week. Paperwork is almost due in some of our classes. Considering all of this, most of us are now probably worried on how to get these things done.

Worrying seems to be inevitable emotional feeling in our life. However, we need to control this emotional feeling because it brings several negative effects in our life. First, worry disrupts our productivity. It consumes our time causing us not to be able to do what we should do. It takes our focus away from the work that we usually do. Second, worry will negatively affect the way we treat others. We will easily get irritated by what people will say about us. Perhaps, we cannot laugh or even smile at someone. Third, worry will adversely affect our emotions. We will become easily disappointed, discouraged, and frustrated. It will make us feel uncomfortable, mad, sad, insecure, and helpless.

Yes, there are solutions for worrying. We need to ask God for help. Paul admonishes us to pray instead of worrying (Phil. 4:6-7). God always cares for us (1 Pet. 5:7). Also, we need to live one day at a time. The Lord exhorts us not to be worried about tomorrow (Matt. 6:34). The problem with worrying about tomorrow is we never run out of tomorrows. God only gives us help our need for today, but He does not give us tomorrow’s help today. In addition, Norman Vincent Peale (the author of the Power of Positive Thinking) suggests the following: Practice saying something positive concerning everything about which you have been talking negatively; Never participate in a worry conversation; Cultivate friendships with hopeful people; Take worry apart, lay it out, dissect it, cut it up, and look at it piece by piece.

Take action to do our work. Let us not put it off. Let us remember that “a work done a day keeps worry away.”

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