D R . E L R O I


Friday, March 28, 2008

Changes That Occured To Me

A lot of changes happened to me when I became a Christian; it was not abrupt in a way but gradual. My Christian doctor invited me to attend the 10 Wednesday Alpha Course to be held at their church. You can take a look at my previous blogs entitled Alpha Course and My 31st Birthday for detailed information. At first I was hesitant because even though I have surrendered my life to the Lord and accepted Him into my heart as my personal Savior, I thought it's somewhat hard for me to make 180 degrees turn suddenly. Imagine this, I was so used in taking control of my self and now, all of a sudden I have to end that self-rule and be totally dependent to someone I have not seen and sometimes can't even feel! But then I realized, well I have nothing to loose anymore and I guess the worst already happened to me so why not give it a good shot. After all, He created me.

First and foremost, I feel so free right now. I don't feel like perturbing anymore about my future, my career, especially my love life. Currently, I do not have a job or any financial resources but God has proven to me that He provides when there's a need. The Alpha Course entailed me to go to Manila for 12 consecutive Wednesdays, and it cost me more than I have set aside. The Lord worked on it through a Christian friend, he's like a spiritual father to me, who have shouldered some of my expenditures for more than half of the entire session. Now I still have a budget for the next few Sunday services too! God is really good.

Secondly, I began to love reading the Bible and I am guided by "Our Daily Bread". I have become hungry of God's words that I actually spend at least 10-15 minutes a day doing it. What's really amazing is that this time I understand it more than ever unlike before.

Next, my way of talking to God has changed. I learned now how to pray in a Godly manner. I call it "together time" with the Lord where I exalt Him, give thanks especially for my salvation and the free gift of eternal life, confess all my sins and ask forgiveness, ask God to take control of my entire life and surrender my heart, and humbly ask Him to reveal Himself and plans to me, consult the decisions I am about to make, and prayers for other people. It feels good talking to our God freely!

The crowd I want to associate myself with now has also changed. Every minute being with my fellow Christians is truly a blessing! It's not that I don't want to be with non-Christian people, but it's more of a putting myself in a situation with people with less temptations. It's like being in a less or none perilous situation. Sadly, temporarily leaving other friends, whom I think would not help to make this whole life change possible and hopefully permanent must be done, like my gay friends. Actually, I have changed my celfone number coz in a way it's a part of the new me.

Prior to my Christian life, I love reading self help books or anything that really interest me. Now, I am fascinated with the books written by Christians. It's really fun learning from other people's experiences. They are inspiring enough to convince myself that entrusting fully my life and having a personal relationship with God is the right and best thing to do more than anything else.

My Sundays are never the same again. Every time I do the church service, I can strongly feel God's presence most especially during the worship. The words shared by the pastors in our congregation are very inspiring and truly applicable to my daily walk with Jesus Christ.

Frankly speaking, I cannot say that my faith to God and to myself is 100 percent because sometimes I worry about on few things inevitably especially when the need is just right there. But I can say that my faith has tremendously increased that I have become more eager to know God in anyway possibly I can. Well I am aware that as a Christian, a 101 percent faith to God and self is a must but I guess it should be developed and cannot be done in an instant in my case. I will get used to it I know.

Lastly and the most important change for me, my self control when it comes to temptations has increased remarkably. As a physically attractive homosexual guy myself, it's really hard to resist most especially if they are just right in front of me and find them attractive as well and aware that they are interested to hook up with me.

Galatians 5:16. So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will nor gratify the desires of sinful nature.
James 4:7-9. Submit yourselves then to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Come near to God and He will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
Leviticus 20:13. If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.

These are some of God's word that I always remember whenever I am facing a temptation. Also it says in 1 Corinthians 6:9 that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God including the homosexual offenders along with other kind of sinners. Like I said, this is and will be my hardest spiritual battle as a Christian. I have fell short and tempted already more than twice as a Christian and the guilt feeling was far worse than before. That's why I also keep this kind of feeling to my mind when I am in a tempting situation or every time a sinful desire occurs to me mentally or physically. Mind is the hardest to control coz more often than not; I caught myself thinking sinfully and unaware. When I think about this awful feeling, as well as these bible verses, now I can simply walk away from gratifying my sinful desires. The Holy Spirit must be really dwelling in me. I may not be always victorious because still I am a human, but now I need to be more and more responsible for my actions. My spiritual counselors and advisers keep saying to me that when I fell short or were not able to fight a certain temptation and gave in, just come back to God and repent. Of course, I do not want to abuse God's love that's why I need to be on guard all the time. Besides, I just can't remember where, but I read that albeit God's unconditional love took that risk of forgiving us and not forsaking us every time we sincerely comes back to Him; it has a certain limitation and the punishment is severe. What I am saying is that though God always forgives us when we stumble, it does not waive the penalty that our actions have brought upon us. He doesn't want us to be offenders.

My first two months as a Christian was a bit different compared to the last one and a half month of it, and it was due to the Holy Spirit receiving week session happened on the 25th of February. Now, as the days goes by these positive changes is becoming a little bit more intense and I am so happy about it. Of course, some times I still worry about things but now I just pray and talk to God then I will be alright.

I am not saying that I am already the person that I should be but definitely I am not the person that I used to be. It's an everyday work for me to be that person.

When I think of what the Lord has for me in the future, I am excited! I don’t know exactly what the future holds, but I do know who holds my future! These are great times to be alive for Jesus! I have never known what was waiting around the next corner.

We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19

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