D R . E L R O I

A PERSONAL JOURNAL OF A MAN LIVING WITH HIV

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas 2010

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6

Last December 13 marked my third year as a real Christian, the time when the Lord Jesus was born into my heart. A lot of amazing things happened in the past three years, a lot of prophecies have turned already into reality.

One of the prophetic words I have received back then was that I will speak before different nations and share God's goodness and faithfulness. It started to happen back in 2008 and God has put me in a position this year where I will constantly do that for two years.

Another prophetic word I received was the restoration of my relationship to my father, it actually happened early this year when I got my first embrace from him after our heart to heart talk with the whole family.

One of those prophecies I am still waiting to happen is the time when I will become a father either physically or spiritually. I still remember that I can't believe upon hearing those words from one of our elders in the church. God knows when I will be ready for that so I am not in a hurry.

Christmas is actually a prophecy by Isaiah which was anticipated and waited by the people in the Old Testament for hundred years. Then it happened more than two thousand years ago, the birth of the blessed child Jesus, the Lord and Saviour of mankind.

God definitely has a plan for each and every one of us. All we have to do is to surrender everything to Him and fully trust Him with all our hearts, then all His plans (Jeremiah 29:11) including those prophetic words we have received and will be receiving surely will turn into reality.

Have a blessed and a Christ-centered Christmas celebration everyone! Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

CoH Laguna

Yesterday we had the last CoH workshop of the year for this NGO together with their partners.

Once again eighteen new channels of God's hope were blessed with God's faithfulness and goodness in my life as I shared it to them. One pastor got even teary eyed and emotional during the closing ceremony!

This time God has shown me that every group is really unique that each of them has their own personalities and characters. I have never encountered very highly intellectual people who would never show their soft side because for them everything is cognitive! Honestly, somehow they got me into my nerves but God was in control then that I was still able to manage it. For me they are unbelievable!

Since I have plans of going to a doctorate degree which only God knows when because I have not started taking up Masters yet, God I think allowed me to meet these two people as a warning as to not to be like them (not that I am acting like the Pharisees, it's just that I have the propensity) but remain humble, very grounded and always putting God first no matter how far I have come. Everything can be done only through Him.

Definitely, it will take time before I forgot these people or probably I will never. Anyway, I had also good memories to remember with this particular group of people. I still thank God for all the blessings and the privilege of serving Him through this ministry.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

World AIDS Day & The Church

As people who believe in God, today is an important time to reflect on HIV and our belief that all people are created in God's image whether you are living with HIV, living with someone who is / are HIV positive, are not infected nor affected by it.

We must remain grounded in the spiritual foundation as the Lord Jesus Christ has shown that calls all of us to work for justice and treat all people as our brothers and sisters as we work to promote and protect the rights of PLWH or affected by HIV as well as those who are vulnerable to infection.

First we need to remember we are all broken people and sinners saved by grace. (Romans 7:15-25, Ephesians 2:8-9)

Second, Christ sets the example in Luke 15. Like the father in the parable of prodigal son, we are all asked to bestow the same courtesy to our brother and sisters no matter how bad they have been were. God has full of compassion and slow to anger. (Psalm 145:8-9)

Lastly, God is calling us to function as one body. (1 Cor.12:12-13). We are called to respond as a church but our response should be more than only a spiritual response of evangelism and prayer. We should clothe ourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience especially to those who are outcast and oppressed by the society. (Col. 3:12-14)

Our spiritual should be balanced by bringing HOPE in a very practical way to people living with HIV or directly affected by it. Let's remember this day by being channels of God's HOPE to everyone.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

South Cotabato CoH

Last week my work team mates and I went to South Cotabato to facilitate the CoH workshop.

It was my first time to visit this part of Mindanao. I had a great time in spite of the challenges we have encountered during the sessions such as language barriers and having an interfaith group.

Generally it went well especially when I shared my testimony. Once again, it has proven that real life experiences are really effective and very helpful in workshops like this. People have deeper understanding of the HIV pandemic and began seeing it in a different light.

In addition, they were truly touched and blessed at the same time with God's goodness and faithfulness He have brought into my life! God sent twenty eight new "channels of hope" from Saranggani, South Cotabato and General Santos.

After the event, the team had a wonderful dinner at General Santos in one of the resorts there. If you want to buy the best tuna and other fish products in the country, visit the tuna capital of the Philippines, General Santos City.

Again it was another blessed trip, thank God!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Travelling in Kenya

Today is my last day here in Kenya. I spent 12 days in Mombasa to take part in the "Channels of Hope" training of facilitators and a day in Nairobi to see the city and relax for a moment.

It's my first time here in Africa, the fourth country, and so far the farthest country from the Philippines I have visited since the time I started serving the Lord in this ministry. I came to Kenya with the thought of learning things on how to do the training with both Christian and Muslims which happens to be a 10 day training and the usual sharing of my testimony to the future then facilitators to bring them a touch of the HIV reality in someone's life. I prayed though that God will show me something new and to my surprise He did!

During the session of stigma, He had shown how powerful His grace of forgiveness is! I can't help but to be too emotional witnessing a white lady asking forgiveness for the apartheid happened years ago in behalf of her race in South Africa to a black young man who also came from the country! He was not just a black man but a Muslim one! The guy got too emotional too for he was unprepared for that event in his life! God really moved everyone including me with that moment! It was very touching and so wonderful! God is just so awesome!

That momentous event gave a clearer picture of what stigma and discrimination can do and how we can avoid it by simply disseminating the ocean of grace God has allowed us to enjoy as His children!

For me it was the climax of this trip aside from meeting a very nice Sheik brother and gain new friends from this land. God is very kind to show me around the city through a friend and see the giraffe and ostrich park then got a taste of different meat such as crocodile, turkey, lamb, camel and ostrich at the "Carnivore" restaurant.

Thank you Lord for all these great blessings and please continue to be with me as I travel back home. Praise the Lord Jesus Christ and shalom!

Friday, October 22, 2010

"HOPE" for Colleagues

Virtually it's been a month since the last time I have conducted the "Channels of Hope" workshop and somehow I am missing it.

Sharing God's goodness and faithfulness in my life to people especially to fellow brothers and sisters in Christ is one of the most rewarding and remarkable feeling as a child of God. It gave inspiration to people and strengthens their faith as well. Sometimes it becomes a reminder to others to examine their life and see how they are with the Almighty Father as well as their journey with Jesus.

The Lord did it once again to my colleagues at work in the past two days praise Him!

One participant said that what we're doing and have accomplished has freed them from the bondage of wrong beliefs! Also he said that it strengthens their faith as a Christian! What a wonderful experience for him! While others mentioned that it enlightened and humbled them in such a life-changing experience way!

Feedback like this put a smile on my face and joy in my heart which inspires me more to serve God's kingdom through this ministry. Thank you Lord for loving me and for giving my life a very beautiful purpose!

Congratulations to the 25 new "salt & light" of this earth especially to the darkness HIV and AIDS is causing!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Pleasure Idolatry

For the past few weeks, I have felt that I was drifting away from God. I have been immersed in God's ministry for a couple of years now or more. In fact I just started my two year contract with this organization to serve Him continuously on the HIV and AIDS Ministry. That made me even busier.

I said I felt I was slipping away from God because I have committed the same mistake again a few times during the same weak moments which I have been experiencing lately. The unworthy feeling and convictions I am feeling is awful and somewhat devastating.

"iCan" posted his thoughts on his blog which entitled "Idol" and he referred to ten but he focused on the one he can relate to. That is pleasure. His post have spoken to me simply because it made me realize that it is also becoming an idol of mine unaware even if I do or have done it occasionally!

Like the people of Israel who grew impatient and started to worship a "golden calf" idol made by them, I felt I am beginning to be like them. Sometimes I caught myself rationalizing and saying that probably it's alright to fall into a sin occasionally because I am serving God big time! How selfish I am to think that way!

Jesus Christ follower can not have both worlds. There are sacrifices must be made and those sacrifices out of love for God must be, will turn me into the person He intended me to be. It will only going to happen if I stay in the path and direction He set for me instead of slipping away to here and there. And idolatry to pleasure is not only a sin but also being foolish and selfish.

Work in process, I know I am still and most of us are in this situation. But I must learn how to control myself and thrive towards holiness and purity because our God is holy.

Let me borrow my friend's thoughts. I am so blessed to have a God who loves me enough to show my weaknesses and help me to want to give them to Him. It is a journey and I pray I will keep my eyes on God who knows me much better than I could ever know myself no matter what. God knows what I need. I am prone to think I know what I need but I certainly do not.

No longer can I still live my life without Jesus and no matter how many times I fail and fall, I will stand and ask God's forgiveness and then continue this journey with Him. This was also my Pastor's advice and my decision. I am a child of God and I am a Christian whatever happens!

God knows exactly when and where I will fall in the future whether through my SSA struggle or through my other area of weaknesses. Like I said in my previous posts of confessions, this maybe not the last time I will commit the same sin but I will continually hang on to His grace and mercy and pray for God's strength to win this battle in the midst of allowing Him to use this God given and very blessed life for His glory!

"I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God." Psalm 40:1-3a.

Thank you Stanw for your post and God bless us! :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

COH in Cebu

It was my fourth time to visit the city and my second time to do the "Channels of Hope" or COH workshop in Cebu last week.

The first one was back in 2009 when I was part of training team to train the second batch of facilitators. This time, some of those new facilitators were now part of the team and most of them were their first time to practice what they have learned more than a year ago.

In spite of a big group of this health team from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, we have four sets of facilitators of three for four groups; everything went well for God was truly in control.

More than 120 participants have attended, were very blessed with the whole workshop and have become new "salt and light" for those people who needs it especially those infected and affected by the HIV pandemic.

I continually thank God and give back all the honor, glory and praises to Him for entrusting me this work and ministry despite of my weaknesses. Blessed be thy name Lord Jesus!

Friday, September 17, 2010

What's So Amazing About Grace?

Philip Yancey is the author of this book and I must say that its one of the best I've ever read. In fact it made me want to read the first book I read from him "The Jesus I Never Knew", which I have finished reading a couple of years ago.

We speak of God's grace often but when somebody ask us what is it, we usually have difficulty in defining and explaining what is it all about. When I became true Christian, I once asked about grace and the person I was speaking with told me that it is an "undeserved gift." It is a gift from our Heavenly father that we, as Christians must know and always ready to dispense.

This book gave me a deeper understanding of what grace is and with the examples given by Yancey such as the holocaust, his homosexual Pastor friend and the EDSA People Power to name a few, I cried a few times. That's how amazing this grace is!

It helped me to comprehend more of God's unconditional love and forgiveness. Two things that all people must experience to become a dispenser of this amazing gift in this world that knows far more of cruelty and unforgiveness than it does of mercy.

I really like Dostoevsky's words that he quoted which is "to love a person means to see him as God intended him to be". According to Yancey, true grace is scandalous and shocking for it forgives the unfaithful spouse, the racist, the child abuser. It loves today's AIDS-ridden addict as much as the tax collector of Jesus' day.

This book has been out there for quite a long time but I only read it last month thanks to my friend for lending it to me. I highly recommend this one because it is a must-read kind of book!

"There is nothing we can do to make God love us more.
There is nothing we can do to make God love us less."

God loves us already no matter what.....that's how amazing God's grace is!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

COH Iloilo and My Struggle

It was my first time to visit Iloilo City last week and I got impressed with the place from the time I arrived at their new airport up to the point when I reached the hotel where I stayed for three nights.

The airport is small but nice then the road from there going to the city is well engineered, the same thing with the few infrastructures on its side. Although the city proper is a little congested but somehow I like it. The La Paz Batchoy tastes really great as well as the barquillos.

As for the COH workshop, it went very smoothly even though one of our facilitator was not able to join us due to her vertigo. God was totally in control. Thirty eight (38) new "channels of hope" were so blessed how God worked in my life. I am truly grateful to Him for allowing me to serve His kingdom in this ministry.

I just pray that God will continue to capture my heart with His love and give me a heart overflowing with love for Jesus! Also I pray that God will renew the burning passion in me that I used to have when I was still a new Christian so that this love and passion will be more than enough for me to say no to these temptations and ungodly desires. I must admit that I am still struggling with SSA and honestly I had a few (three I guess) occasional sexual fall for the past 3 months. It all happened when I was very really tired physically and mentally from work which I think hauled my guards down then against temptations, not to mention that there's still a part of me that wants to satisfy these sinful desires.

God has forgiven me already I know when I confessed and admitted it to Him not only once but many times. I cannot continue serving Him and sinning even occasionally at the same time. All I want is to love Him, honor and please Him, serve Him and live this God-given life truly worthy of His unconditional love.

Please pray for me my dear brothers and sisters in Christ as I continue to walk this journey with Him. Thank you and God bless us all.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Me In India

Yes, India is the third country I have visited and I must say that it's one of my best trips so far ministry-wise!

God sent me there not only to serve Him in the "Channels of Hope" ministry. He had shown me the end result of what I am doing for the churches and the beginning of a new journey for His people whom He had destined to change forever!

Once I questioned the Lord if this is the only thing I will do for His kingdom which is educating the church community on HIV and AIDS through COH and testifying to His amazing grace. And telling these people how He took me out of darkness, gradually healing and changing me. I got so excited when visiting a community where HOPE is being implemented was included on this trip.

This Pastor I've met was immediately woke up by God from a deep slumber and made him realize the role of the church after he have gone through the three day COH workshop. He called him to act and transform the lives of this certain group of people who are living in darkness for centuries! He took the children of this community in a child care center as the beginning of that transformation in partnership with our NGO counterpart there and introduced them who Jesus is by educating them in His words.

This community in Jaipur City celebrates when a baby girl is born because it is an assurance for them of monetary benefits by turning her into a commercial sex worker when puberty has reached. The women in that village, most of them are infected with HIV, are in prostitution and that's the only way they knew how to make ends meet.

I was deeply moved and can't help but to get too emotional while hearing this sad and heart breaking story from this Pastor that it pushed me to pray for him and his church afterward. Also I made a commitment to pray for them and for these people day and night as my initial contribution for the realization of this Pastor's vision. It was absolutely the highlight of this trip!

Indian people are really nice but this group of participants whom we have trained to be COH facilitators is really struggling on how to deal with the homosexuals! The discussions were intense that I took it as a sign from God to tell them how I am dealing with my struggle with same sex attraction or SSA with God and with my church as well, which I do not usually do for it is totally embarrassing on my part. But when God asked me to do so, who am I to say no? So I did and I'm glad that somehow I have shed some light on this matter to them.

They were so grateful to have met me and were so blessed at the same time and so did I. God and I have done a great job there and He's obviously doing wonderful things there!

I am so grateful to the Lord not only because of these moments, He also allowed us to see the city palaces and the beauty of their culture when we went to visit a few tourist destinations of Jaipur. Also I was able to ride on a camel for the first time! It was truly a remarkable and indeed a super blessed trip! Praise God!

After my virtually half month of stay in India, I took part on the two day workshop for my colleagues at the office when I got home. It has been really a fruitful month.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

COH Davao and Samal Island

One of the largest groups we handled was the more than forty participants of the COH workshop last week held in Davao City.

The Lord allowed 34 of them to complete the two days orientation of "Channels of Hope". Once again, God brought together His people from Evangelical groups, Catholic and Muslim brothers to show them how to become the salt and light of this world for those who are infected and affected by HIV and AIDS.

For me it was one of the best testimonies I have delivered for the past two years I've been doing this. Not because virtually everyone in the room cried but mainly for the reason that God has truly touched their hearts either through conviction of their stigmatizing attitudes or simply blessed with how God's grace worked in my life! Only God, and them knows.

It was really an honor to testify to the gospel of God's grace and I am grateful to Almighty God for allowing me to be a witness in the HIV ministry!

God was so good to let us see and enjoy the beauty of Samal Island. We were able to relax at the beach after the workshop before going home.

I consider my life worth nothing to me if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me, the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace, Acts 20:24.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Strength in Weakness

This book by Andrew Comiskey is about healing sexual and relational brokenness.

I did not understand most part of the book the first time I read it more than a year ago so I read it again and I have understood it all this time thank God. What really amazing was when I am reading the last part of the author's afterword, I felt like its God who's really speaking to me. Before I knew it, my eyes were filled tears and my heart was full of joy and peace.

Allow me to share these words spoken by God to Andrew first prior to me.

"When you were young, you thought you could leap over every boundary line and get away with it. Even when the pain of your rebellion became apparent to you, you denied it. Only when the effects of sin showed themselves did you slow down long enough to listen?

I led you to my Son, Jesus Christ, who from His cross released a flood of healing - blood for the forgiveness of sin and water for cleansing. When you called on His name, I loosed that cleansing flood over you. I sent faithful Christians to abide with you as that healing stream permeated every source of sin and shame. You, your old man, your old vision of yourself, died in the waters, and I raised you up in new life.

Not only were your sins washed away, but I also cleansed your wounds. I gently bound up the brokenness inflicted on you. I washed away the shame you carried through others' rejection and abuse.

And I freed you to be weak before me and others, not hard and defensive nor brash and foolish. I freed you to enter my pool of mercy again and again to receive grace to help you in your weakness. You learned to walk free from the shame and to receive mercy from fellow Christians as from my hand. And you grew and gained a vision of how my strength is available to you in your weakness.

Every step of the way I am with you. I know you are still weak. You still walk with a limp, a reminder of what I have saved you from and what I have saved you for - to call to others into the river so that they too can arise as members of my healing army. But I have trained and still training you to rely upon me and I have strengthened you at every step.

Give freely to others the grace in which I have immersed you. Raise high the cross for all to see, for from my cross I release the cleansing, healing flood that is the hope for humanity. Only here can sin and shame and wounding be dissolved. Only here can my people be strengthened in their weakness and become fruitful agents of my kingdom. Only here can my sons and daughters learn how to love well, even as I have loved them."

Honestly I feel like crying again as I type these words. This book is a must read for those who want to have a comprehension of true healing from sexual and relational brokenness.

Men, women, all of our struggles such as homosexuality or any addictions, and the church when laid at the cross will surely give us strength to love well, strength to leave shame behind, strength to overcome sin and strength in weakness.

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." 2 Cor. 12:9

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Skywalk Extreme Cebu & COH

Two weeks ago I was in Cebu for the second time with my team mates at work. We attended this trainer's training on Gender.

It was great for we all have learned a lot and had a great fellowship at the same time. The team went to Casa Verde and had our dinner! The food and the strawberry kiss drink taste really delicious at a low price.

My friend and I decided to take the Skywalk Extreme at Crown Regency Hotel. As expected, it was nerve-wracking but a wonderful experience to see the beauty of the city from the top at night!

Then last Thursday and Friday, the fourth (if I am not mistaken) "Channels of Hope" or COH, the workshop on HIV and AIDS for churches and faith based organization or FBOs, for the staff and church partners took place. Eighteen new "channels of hope" went home blessed and inspired with new hearts and attitudes for the infected and affected by the pandemic!

Once again, God have shown His faithfulness for taking control of everything and His goodness for all these blessings! Praise God and thank you so much for the opportunity to serve and glorify your grace through this ministry!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Underground River Palawan

It was my second time to visit the province of Palawan last week. The purpose of my trip there was to learn about breast feeding and HIV and behavioral change communication as part of my capacity building for my work.

The Lord was so good to bless us by allowing the group to see and experience the infamous subterranean river of Palawan or most commonly known as the "underground river".

You will wonder how those conical hanging pillar in a limestone cave has gradually built up or formed called stalactites. The forms and shapes amazed me. You will see a figure like that of the holy family, giant mushroom, a bacon liked shape, an onion liked form and many other shapes and figures depending on how you will apparently view it.

The trip alone on the river trekking inside the cave took us less than hour. From Puerto Princessa City, approximately it will take 90 minutes to 2 hours to go to Sabang and then you will take a 10-15 minutes boat ride to that side of the mountain where the underground river is situated.

With so much learning and information I have acquired from the training which will be truly helpful on my work, I feel so knowledgeable with the topic. And at the same I was blessed to see the beauty of this God's wonderful creation, it's an answered prayer and a dream come true.

I thank God for allowing me to serve Him through this ministry that comes with the opportunity to visit and see various parts of this country and later on outside the Philippines. Lord you're simply amazing!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Again?

Honestly, I was really hesitant if I'll write about this here or not. Perhaps I am afraid what people who read and follow my blog might think or say about me.

But then it does not matter because first and foremost, this is my personal journal and I am doing this for God. He knew it anyway and I'm accountable to Him prior to anyone. I just want to share how I feel after I fell again sexually last week.

Instead of guilt, what I felt was rage against me. I said "shit" several times to myself, cannot believed that I have done it again! In spite of God's goodness and being truthful to His promise, this was how I have treated Him back.

Then the Lord made me realized this. "Son it's just waiting to happen. You know very well in you heart and in your mind that you still have a plan to do it. You're holding on to the contacts of some few guys whom you'd like to meet and have it done with. Also you still want to go back to a couple of guys in your past even you already knew that it was wrong and will never satisfy your needs, only it will bring you back to your old self. Let them go and yield it to me my son. Do you want those promises to happen and eventually become a man I have always wanted you to be? Then let go and obliterate the things from your past and cease holding on to them. Or else, it will gradually pull you down and separates us."

God has forgiven me graciously I know. Almost I heard Him audibly just to help me realized that. Truly there's nothing we can conceal from God. This directed me to destroy the things I am holding on to which could lead me into sexual sin. It includes deleting the contacts and changing my other number. Temptations I've been facing everyday merely just from walking off to work or in mall are strenuous already and holding on to such things and making it an option is too much.

Sometimes I cry out to Jesus to help me find a joy in carrying this daily cross of mine, denying myself and dying to all of my homosexual desires. The Lord knows how much I've wanted to stop, not to fall to any sexual sin over and over again. Avoid looking at it as an option whenever I feel vulnerable (feels alone, tired and sad) and utilize the authority, the strength He has bestowed upon me over this weakness. So I offer this prayer to our Heavenly Father which He has shown me during one of my daily devotion.

"Heavenly Father, I desire to walk in purity with you. Fill me with Your holiness as I pursue a life that is free of sexual sin, in Jesus name Amen."

Saturday, June 5, 2010

COH Zamboanga

Praise God for another successful "Channels of Hope" workshop!

It was held last week in Zamboanga City to train the people working with this NGO including the church partners and a few brothers from the Muslim community.

This was truly a remarkable event because it's the first time I have experienced and witnessed where Christians and Muslims joined together and really getting along well! Also it was the biggest number of participants we handled so far, a total number of 36.

Once again, these new group of people were blessed by God's grace, love, goodness and faithfulness in my life as I have shared my testimony with them. I gained new friends too. It was my first time in this western part of Mindanao and I thank the Lord for He allowed us to visit some places, experienced the "barter trade", and taste some of their native food.

What a great way to start my first day on this new job! God is simply the best!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Waiting is Over

Yes it's over praise the Lord!

First I have written about "The Adversity of Waiting" followed by "While I'm Waiting", and now I can't believe that my waiting is finally over!

Exactly three months after this job has been offered to me and six months after I have submitted my application on line, I will be starting next month. I believe this is God's perfect timing and I surmise He thinks I am ready now to take this job for His kingdom. God is simply the best!

God taught me a lot of things on this season of waiting and idleness. I have learned to be more patient. I have learned to trust Him more. Also I deemed God has increased my faith in Him through this period of my life. But I believe the best thing He taught me was; He is truly faithful to all His promises and loving toward all He has made. (Psalms 145:13)

Be still and know that He is God (Psalms 46:10) for great is His love towards us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. (Psalms 117:2)

Lord, you're simply amazing! Thank you for creating this job for me and at the same time for giving me an opportunity to serve you through this work ministry. Praise you Lord Jesus Christ!

The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:24)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

While I'm Waiting

If you have seen the movie "Fireproof", which was recently shown in HBO Asia for a week, you'll be familiar with this song. I fell in love with it the first time I heard and listened to it. I was and still deeply moved by its message.

Currently where I am right now, I sing this song to myself while waiting for some of the God's promises in my life. Waiting is not easy. Time like this is probably one of the favorite times of enemy to work on especially when you're idle and bored but have to be still and trust God. You will understand more if you read my previous blog prior to this one.

By the way, I was able to spend time with my pastor who also happens to be my covering and accountability in the church. We had a great time and God gave me the grace to be brutally honest with him with all I've been through since the last time we talked. Although we did not have the regular Saturday meeting at Bagong Pag-asa, my two friends and I were able to hang out together and had good fellowship.

I believe this period of waiting for this job is God's answer when I prayed about increasing my faith in Him. It seems like He wanted me to wait and hang on for a little while and have faith in Him. Well I am enjoying my time relaxing (perhaps nearly all forms of it which I really enjoy and like) at home with my family and spending more time with God so it is actually a blessing.

As for my health, I am very well except for this slight back pain on the right side. I have time to do my routine work out every morning and will try to increase the crunches I make to have those six pack abs again which I used to have. With undetected viral load and high CD4 count, I do not have to visit my doctor that often. God is good!

After writing "The Adversity of Waiting" previously, I realized that there's also a good side of it; only if you utilize it with things that are pleasing to God, to others and to yourself.
My friends says that I have to enjoy a period like this for God is preparing me for a huge work that I will find little time doing these activities I am presently doing.

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him. Psalms 34:8

http://vimeo.com/3768562 or http://www.myspace.com/johnwaller or

video

Above is the URL for the video of this song and the video in case you want to see it. God bless to all! Shalom!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Adversity of Waiting


It's been 3 months now since this job I've applied and prayed for was offered to me back in Bangkok.

The person in charge flew to Thailand then from the country where he is based to personally talk to me about it and I was very excited because I felt like God created this job and have chosen me to specifically do this work for his kingdom.

A week after I came home I was phone interviewed by him just to formally go through with the process and was informed to be notified in a month regarding the status of my application. It is the normal time frame for international job application according to him.

One month had lapsed and I never heard anything from them. God can give anything to us but He can also take them away anytime He wants. I have been thinking whether God was just teaching me to be patient or He decided to take this job away from me because of the sexual fall I had back in Bangkok or of the sinful desires in my heart which kill me everyday. These are the things that were going through in my head. Good thing I was busy doing the Hope ministry, doing interviews and meetings and attending trainings then.

Another month had passed and this time I was and still busy doing nothing, idle and getting a little impatient. And then I received an email from my contact person that I still need to wait a call now from the HR at the local office here in the country. Two weeks of waiting went by and the same things I mentioned above keep going through my mind. Actually it got worst that somehow I became a bit sloppy with my walk and fell into sexual sin again. Honestly, I really felt bad even after my confession to God and asked for His forgiveness. My accountability partners and pastor won't be happy about this.

Now I've got no choice but to stay with Jesus although I failed him once again, pray and still wait. I do not know but I feel like God is playing with me. I truly feel awful about myself because of what happened, a little edgy and frustrated. I feel like God is taking this job away from me. Will God simply do that because of my stupid mistake? Is our Father like that? Do you think He'll do that as a consequence?

Frankly speaking, I deem of letting go and take control of things but I am well aware that this is wrong. This is not God-dependence. I have to convince myself that this is another test of faith and continue clinging on to Jesus albeit I don't feel like it no matter what.

In my two years and five months Christian journey, I have been fed and learned a lot from my pastors, counselors, friends, Christian books, trainings, seminars, ministry and especially from God's word. The only thing left are the proper application of these knowledge.

Truly from with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief, Ecclesiastes 1:18.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Basta Lovelife


This book by Kuya Kevin is all about making wise relationship decision. I believe this is his first published book here in the country.

Kevin Sanders answers virtually all the most frequently asked questions about love, sex and relationships. Each topic or subjects were presented in a short but very clear way that you can finish reading the whole book in one sitting. It was done very nicely I must say, very easy to read and comprehend.

Here you will understand how's a man or woman should be in a relationship. He talks about the male sex drive, common mistakes women commit, why self control is important and why purity really matters, and other relationship issues.

You can also find ways on how to overcome rejection and break-up and other relationship dilemmas. Kevin also talked about lifestyle issues such as on-line dating, living in and same sex relationships, the truth behind all these things.

In short, it can be a guide on how to have a Christ centered relationship. Yes, the bottom line, loving God first and having an intimate relationship with Jesus by obeying Him for you to have a God-centered relationship. A relationship that is blessed and according to His will.

So get your copy now! Be pure, be wise and be blessed like what Kuya Kevin said!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Nazirite Phase 3 - Hunger


I am grateful to God for He allowed me to attend the third installment of this training by my pastor held in Baguio City at PBTS last week.

Getting more intimate with God and hungry with Him is the key principle of this phase. Real fasting and praying, intercession and worshiping, meditating on God's word were some of the significant things I have learned which must be a lifestyle of a true follower of Jesus Christ. First phase started with humility all the time followed by holiness, which by the way the greatest experience I had on this training, and then intimacy with our Creator through Jesus.

Honestly, I never really had an encounter with God during this phase unlike in holiness where God had truly spoken to me as early on our first night. My pastor told me then it was the best testimony he ever heard from me because I uttered words of encouragement to young people. I remember I was very inspired by the Holy Spirit while delivering those words. It was also the time when my feelings for this beautiful lady became passionate. By the way, the last time I checked she's getting married late this year. I never got the chance to tell her how I feel. Obliviously she's hurting me but I am alright, God shielded my heart from too much pain.

The best thing that happened to me on this training was when the boys of the participants, mostly member of our church worship team, asked me to join them on their bonding moments. I really felt I belong to this group of male, just one of the boys having fun! They did not treat me as "gay" but as their respected older brother instead! It feels great to be just one of the guys praise the Lord!

Now we're closer and have more passion for Jesus! What a wonderful experience back there, thanks to Him!

When I got back to Manila, I was put to test by the enemy but God's grace is sufficient for me to choose Him over the temptations he had set. It was hard I must admit but God will always provide a way out. All I have to do is to decide to get out.

It's time to put into practice everything I have learned from the beginning and live the Nazirite lifestyle, walking in humility and holiness very intimately with God.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Learning The Hard Way

Honestly, I am not fond of reading true to life stories before. When I became a Christian I have read the amazing stories from the likes of Brother Yun, Franklin Graham, Dennis Byrd and a few others.

Knowing how God had moved to the lives of His people got my interest in reading them now. The miracles, the healing and the unimaginable twist and turns God allowed in someone's life bring inspiration and help my faith to grow more and cling into Jesus steadfastly.

This book by Kuya Kevin Sanders is a compilation of stories contributed by Filipinos. The lives of these people had been touched by God in different ways but shared with one denominator, falling into sexual sin.

Sexual sin does not come in one form and there are many factors around us that could put anyone at risk of falling into it when the person is oblivious and imprudent. The body is not meant for sexual immorality (1 Cor. 6:13) but for the Lord. God is abounding in love but also just and definitely there are consequences for all our sinful actions and most of it is severe.

There are eighteen heart breaking testimonies where you can learn from on this book. But moreover, you can see God's goodness and faithfulness when they started to yield their circumstances to Jesus. God is truly a God of second chances and real hope can only be found in Jesus!

This book also speaks about the reality that is happening inside our churches. It only shows that Christians are really not immune to temptations or sins and also capable of making wrong decisions. Disobeying God or living a life without Him could definitely lead into catastrophe. But what matters most is how you get up after falling just to continue the race God asked us to run, an attitude reflected in virtually all the stories here.

My favorite stories are "Sexual Sin and Stronghold" and "Confessions of a Porn Addict". Not only I can relate to these people but I was simply amazed on how God turned their lives around. My story was featured last entitled "Living with HIV". It's available at PCBS, National Bookstore and Power books.

"Our journey is one of faith. The Lord's glory is often hidden from our sight. While it may seem dark as we struggle along the darkness can also be a door into union with the Lord if we allow Him to walk with us in our journey. Walking with Him gives us hope and peace."

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ministry and Me

It's been more than six months since I've got a regular job. But the good news is that God remains faithful, and will always be, when it comes to my daily needs and in answering my prayers even the small ones.

Somehow the Lord loves keeping me busy with the ministry He had entrusted me especially the past week.

Last Thursday, I went to the hospital to get my ARV and checked out the result of my latest CD4 count; from 448 it had increased to 521!

After that, I met Kuya Kevin and recorded a radio (podcast) interview with him on his program "Basta Love Life". I am a follower of his blog but it was the first time I personally saw him. He's an incredibly wonderful guy with a heart for young Filipinos. To listen to that interview and know Kuya Kevin more,
you can click the links below.

http://kuyakevin.libsyn.com
KuyaKevin.com

My doctor and I, together with the other facilitator, had conducted the two day COH workshop to her (my doctor) church. She's so happy that it finally happened and God truly moved the hearts of the participants!

Two days ago I had attended my first HIV summit in Manila. It was nice to see good friends I have not seen for a long time there and meet new people working in the HIV and AIDS ministry.

Lastly yesterday, I gave an orientation of "Channels of Hope" program to the youth of this church in northern Manila. The response was great and I think they have enjoyed it.

After that, I had decided to go home and take some rest. I was able to finish Kuya Kevin's "Learning the Hard Way" book while in the bus on my way home. The last story featured was mine (Living with HIV) and I'll be fair with my review which I will post here soon.

These are all great blessings from God and words are not enough to thank Him.
But thanksgiving to God must be never ending (1 Thessalonians 5:18) so thank you Lord and praise you!

I am excited with the amazing things God is about to do next! He's simply the best!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sexual Healing


This book written by David Kyle Foster is truly a biblical guide to finding freedom from sexual sin and brokenness!

He talked about the specific sexual sin areas such as the cause of homosexuality confusion, child sexual abuse, sexual addiction, pornography and masturbation. Also he discussed what brings healing to all this sexual brokenness. These comprise the second part of the book.

Laying the foundations for healing sexual brokenness was covered on the first part as well as the root sources for aberrant sexual development and the divine intent for sexuality.

I was appalled by the revelations I got for myself while reading it. First, I know I am living under grace but not completely to my astonishment! For more than two years of my journey with Christ, I've been praying for deliverance from this struggle and purity when actually I don't really and utterly want it. This explains my habit of entertaining good looking guys and past unforgettable sexual encounters occasionally in my head as well as the hidden desire to try other "stuff which I have not tried" on sex before changing fully. What a self-deception!

Second, I have finally acknowledged that I am obeying God because I was supposed to and not because I wanted to. This is being performance oriented rather than living totally by His grace!

Lastly, this book made me comprehend what idolaters really is and why do we keep giving in to temptations with those foolish and unequivocally non-biblical justifications for those actions. Now I know what God truly is saying in Romans 1:22-28 and why I keep on falling. This realization was intensified with last Sunday's preaching about "Lordship", that Jesus must be the only one Lord of our life. He must not be contending with others especially with our own selves!

Evidently, God revealed all these things to me and I was bewildered and feel so lost at first. But I am glad He did and I am thankful because now I have changed my prayer and became more conscious if what I am saying to God is actually what's inside my heart. I am asking Him to renew a steadfast spirit within me and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me and change wholly, Psalms 51:10-12.

I have decided to believe in God's grace and live out of it instead of just trying to perform to earn God's favor by trying to obey Him because I want to. As a Christian, all my actions and decisions must be simply motivated by love, love for our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ.

With faith and hope, one day I believe God will deliver me completely from this SSA struggle, from this brokenness and any related "dirty habit" that I will not go back. Those toxic, filthy rags I'd been holding onto will be replaced with something that is infinitely more valuable such as a glorious robe of righteousness.

The prime directive in accomplishing this is developing an intimate relationship with God. In that place of intimacy, God reveals to us the hidden mysteries of bondage and imparts power to us to overcome sin. I already have experienced this. I just need to strengthen it and choose to love Jesus more. In God's perfect time, I will become the man that He wanted me to be in the name of Jesus.

God is a God of second chances. 2 Peter 3:9 says "The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance."

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Video Testimony

Last week I had a shoot for my video testimony. The youth Pastor who happens to be my friend was the one who did the shoot as well as the editing.

When we're done, it was inordinately long for me to be mitigated to less than 10 minutes. Virtually, it was my entire life story.

The video was shown last Sunday, Palm Sunday to be exact, to the whole congregation but I believe 10-20 percent of the total members were not there. It was my first time to go on public sharing my whole life on a video! I have disclosed my past, my SSA struggle and HIV status to my church! But the best part of it I infer was that, they can see how God is working in my life and gradually transforming me to become the man He desired me to be!

After the video, I was called by our Pastor in front to say something and I have uttered a little prayer for me and for the church with thanksgiving to God the Father. It was my way of giving back the honor, praises and glory to my Creator.

A lot of people were blessed and some of them have approached me after the service which helped to obliterate the edginess I felt prior to and after showing the video.

The enemy (Satan) is absolutely not happy with what I have done. Consequently I pray that the Lord will strengthen me to stand firm in Him and willfully be able to say NO to ungodliness all the time.

Honestly, I was bombarded with temptations the following day! Thank God that He gave me the grace and the will to act and say no to them (Phil. 2:13). It was arduous though I must admit but I am glad I did! Truly His grace is sufficient and is made perfect in weakness (2 Cor. 12:9).

I just hope and pray also that those people who have watched and listened to my video testimony were inspired with the HOPE I have shown in JESUS! After all, it was a message from the "Man of Hope".

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

When Crisis Hits You


This book by William B. Girao talks about tasting God's goodness in bitter times.

His journey with his wife in the midst of pain is truly inspiring! From the time they had found out that his wife got breast cancer up to the time when she was healed, you can see and feel God's presence that He's completely in control of the whole situation!

William also discussed on dealing with depression, facing painful situations and trusting the goodness of God all at the same time. He had presented great explanation as well on euthanasia and suicide on why it is not an option backed up with arguments from the Scriptures.

The reasons he had mentioned on why does God allow crisis into our lives have made me understood more the pain and struggles in my Christian journey and appreciate more Psalms 42, 43, 44 and 34.

The ingenuous and precise approach of the author made it easier to understand and read. Personally, I can relate to and feel blessed by this book.

Friday, March 19, 2010

God's Favor And Grace

This week is truly an awesome week for me! Once again I have proven that God is faithful and good all the time.

First and foremost, I believe the Lord had just opened a door for me when He allowed me to share a bit of my life through 700 Club. Even it did not turn out the way I expected it, I am convinced that it's just how God exactly planned it. Mari Kaimo interviewed me and then Peter Kairuz, together with the other guests and staff prayed for me after the show. It will be shown on Monday via QTV at 11PM.


Secondly, God revealed to me how powerful the "Our Father" prayer is and why the Lord Jesus Christ taught that prayer to us. Darrell W. Johnson's "Fifty-Seven Words That Change The World" is a book, a journey through the Lord's Prayer. Only if we will utter it before His throne with a pure heart, it covers everything and could really change this world we are living in! So now I have decided to end my conversation with God with these words.

And lastly but the best thing that ever happened to me, God the Father had opened surprisingly an opportunity for me to share my faith in Jesus to my family especially to my earthly Father! Finally, I was able to tell almost everything I have always wanted to say to my "Tatay" and I strongly believed that my relationship with him just started to be restored! He gave me the fatherly embrace and kiss I've never had! We we're able to forgive each other and say I love you at last!

The life with my family will never be the same again. The Lord pulled down the biggest stronghold which kept our emotions for quite some time. Now that my father just turned 60, he sworn to us that He'll try his best to change and be good. I suggested him to yield that decision to Jesus and allow Him to take control.

I know that the ultimate salvation of my whole family is coming very soon! God's favor and grace is obviously upon me these days and all I can say is PRAISE GOD! YOU are absolutely in control.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Battleground of Mind


According to the book written by Francis Frangipane entitled "The Three Battlegrounds" there are three arenas of spiritual warfare; the mind, the church and the heavenly places. Let me share what God taught me with the battleground of mind.

My friend counselor asked me to read this book when I confessed to him the recent sins I have committed which happened early last month. Well I'm quite over it for more than three weeks now, thank God for His grace and mercy! He said that everything starts in the mind so he lent me this book and I have learned a lot!

Victory begins with the name of Jesus on our lips. It is consummated by the nature of Jesus in our hearts.

I have learned that as a Christian, the goal is Christ-likeness and not warfare. We are called to be transformed into Christ's likeness and not for anything else. It will start with an honest heart before God and maintaining it which is the greatest defense we can have against the devil. Therefore it's being humble at all times. God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble, James 4:6. Then in verse 7 it continues, "Submit yourselves then to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you." Humility is the first step for it is the stronghold of the godly.

When the enemy (Satan) accuses us of some sin or flaw, agree with thine adversary then turn to God in humility. Satan fears virtue so he is terrified of humility for it is submission to the Lord.

Pulling down all the strongholds is the demolition and removal of these old ways of thinking so that the actual Presence of Jesus Christ can be manifested through us. In doing this we need to take every thought captive to Christ to the obedience of Him, 2 Cor. 10:5. Arrest the thought "I am just a sinner!" by replacing it with the confession of our faith that now we are a beloved child of God and
though we occasionally still sin, Christ's blood cleanses us of all unrighteousness through confession, 1 John 1:9. We are a new creation for the old has gone and the new has come, 2 Cor. 5:17.

Focusing on God's highest purpose will bring us peace during the warfare for God is a God of peace and it will soon crush Satan under our feet, Rom. 16:20; only then we can rule in the midst our enemies!

Let us pray: "Lord Jesus, I submit to You. I declare, according to the Word of God, that because of Your power to subject all things unto Yourself, the weapons of my warfare are mighty to the pulling down of strongholds (2 Cor. 10:3-4). I repent for using the lie, "I will never be like Jesus," as an excuse to sin and compromise my convictions. In Jesus' name I renounced my flawed, sinful old nature and, by the grace of God and the power of Your Spirit, I pull down the stronghold of unbelief that exists in my mind. Because of the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ, I am a new creation. And I believe that I will go from glory to glory, being continually transformed into Christ's image as I walk with God in Jesus name I pray. Amen."

I copied this prayer from the book and have decided to apply what I have learned; praying not to fall on the same sin over and over again and that the victory in me will be consummated by Jesus' nature in my heart.

Remember, victory begins with the name of Jesus on our lips. It is consummated by the nature of Jesus in our hearts.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

I Am 33 Today!

Yes my dear readers and followers, I just turned 33 years old today and I am happy so you can simply greet me "Happy Birthday!"

All I can say is God has been so good and faithful to me and He will stay that way forever. Last time I talked about the blessings I have received from Him in spite of my iniquities. Today, the Lord simply showed me how blessed I am with the people He sent to love me.

My mother had prepared and ordered some food to share for celebration. My cousins and my older brother's family were my only home visitors. A lot of my friends from church, office and former work and classmates greeted me either through phone text messages, email, face book or my other personal website. It feels good to be remembered and feel loved on this special day.

I thank God for all the blessings and for the 33 years gift of life. Although the birthday requests and prayers I have been praying for remains unanswered, I strongly believed that I will received them in His perfect timing. Actually I asked for a Mac book pro laptop and the full scholarship grant for the AIDS conference in Vienna among others from God so let's wait and see.

But imperatively, God has reminded me today about my real purpose in this life; that I might come into Christ likeness. This is the goal of my faith in Him to be victorious for victory begins with the name of Jesus on our lips and will be consummated by the nature of Jesus in our hearts!

Today also marked the second year anniversary of this blog, the online personal journal of mine. I am so glad that it has been reached by many and feel so blessed to have followers who are praying for or with me and became my online friends. Thank you guys!

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose, Romans 8:28.

God bless you all and shalom!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Shower of Blessings

"When it rains it pours." That's very true whether you would like to use it on something good or bad and I am referring it to the blessings God has been pouring out upon me.

The memories I have in Bangkok are still fresh. The things I need to pay were all paid; this is the area where I have proved that God truly knows the exact timing. I am only a few weeks away to be on board on the job I have been prayed for and still praying about.

God has given me another opportunity to bless more people when I get to share my testimony through this TV program, I don't know when it will be aired but I was set for an interview this Friday.

But the most important gift I have received from the Lord.......the result of my VL or viral load test is now UNDETECTED! I got this news from my doctor friend last week. God is truly healing me, He's my real doctor!

"Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart", Psalm 37:4. My heartfelt thanks go to our Heavenly Father for answering my prayers and for all these blessings. In spite of my shortcomings and iniquities, He remains faithful and will always be.

Praise be to God!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Bangkok Trip

I was out of the country for the past ten days because God had sent me to Bangkok, Thailand to be a part of the training team for Channels of Hope or COH Training of Facilitators.

This is my second time to be a trainer for this program and we are five in the team plus our mentor Rev. Christo Greyling. We have 21 participants who have attended and were certified to be facilitators and new "channels of hope". They came from Thailand, Mongolia, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar. It was great to have a Filipino participant who is serving the people of Laos. Meeting and making new friends are just two of the great things that happen with this event.

People were blessed and inspired with what God has been done and still doing in my life when I told them my testimony. Their learning experience has become more real and heart striking according to them.

It was my first time in Bangkok and the second country I have visited. My good friend and I were able to see the Grand Palace before we left the country and able to see some shopping malls like Siam Center and MBK and did some a little shopping. Thai food was really good especially the Tom Yum!

God poured out many blessings to me during my 9 days stay in this place. I believed He opened a door for me which I thought was closed regarding this certain job I have applied for more than a couple of months ago though I need to confirm this first in the coming weeks. I have received an invitation from this youth church leader through email to speak about my life and minister to their group of young people. She's a follower of this blog and this is where she got to know me. Also God answered all my simple prayers while in Bangkok!

These are few of the good things happened to me while in Thailand though I must admit that not all the whole time I stayed there were all victory. Honestly I have made a mistake which I think I do not have to elaborate here anymore. God has forgiven me and taught me something new out of that blunder. It was not enough to stop me from loving God and surrendering to Jesus all of me.

All in all, it was a wonderful, blessed and great trip! I praise God and grateful to Him for this remarkable experience.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Man of Hope

"Depressed people love to gather around you because you radiate hope. You are able to put a boundary that you do not get into their despair and that is a gift. God has given you that gift because He has faith in you and you have faith in people! When they say that they want to give up, you will simply say that 'you can do it'! You give hope to people."

These may not be the exact words but this is what it sounds like when our guest preacher last Sunday looked at me and asked me to stand up, stared deeply into my eyes when she released these prophetic words to me. Her ministry partner now called me the "man of hope". Everyone now in our church calls me the "man of hope".

I was so blessed that Sunday and somehow I have expected it because I have prayed for it. Boldly I asked God to speak to me that day and He did! He never fails every time I implore Him to talk to me, He's so faithful and truly an awesome God!

I surmise this has something to do with the ministry I have been doing for almost two years now which is the "Channels of Hope". What exactly I will be doing in the next several months or few years, that I have no idea. As long as God will continue to use me in the HIV and AIDS ministry to give hope to the hopeless and be a light, forever I will be grateful and blessed.

Man of hope, that's me and will always be being me.

Praise the Lord for another successful COH workshop early this week held at the Samaritana. Nineteen God's men and women have been trained to be equipped on the HOPE initiative for churches on HIV and AIDS.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Patience and Faith

I believe these are two of the many things God is teaching me nowadays and it made me realize that patience and faith go together most of the time or probably all the time.

For the past several weeks, I have been praying to the Lord to help me increase my faith and believe in Him and be patient enough to wait for His instruction and direction. It seems like that God is indubitably into it when it comes to the job I've been praying for and the breakthrough I've been waiting for in my Christian journey.

We all know that it's a little difficult to wait especially if you're waiting for quite some time now but for some reason, God has put in my heart peace and joy while going through this stage I guess merely because that's how I feel. Like He said in Psalm, be still and know that He is God. My pastor told me that the Lord is preparing me to do something big and I feel the same way too.

At this point, I am still hoping for the best that I will land the job I have been fasting and praying for in His perfect timing as well as the breakthrough in my walk. I just need to be patient and have faith in Jesus that He's at work.

While I am waiting, I shrewdly use my time in reading the scriptures more, watching my favorite TV shows, working out and volunteering in the church and to my old work.

God bless you all. Shalom!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

My 2009: The Review

Year 2009 started off my second year as a Christian and I have decided to start my third year remembering what happened in the past year and writing a few resolutions for 2010.

First and foremost, I am very thankful for the faithfulness and incomparable love God has shown me. Being allowed to meet a lot of people in the Christian community and minister then be a blessing to them while doing the "Channels of Hope" in the HIV and AIDS ministry is truly a joyful and wonderful experience. Regardless how exhausting it was but the transformation of the participants and the passion it created into their hearts after learning the truth about this pandemic is an utmost importance in reducing the stigma and discrimination. Some of them began executing their plans.

I am grateful for each opportunity that God gives me to share what He has done into my life whatever the result maybe. I am thankful that God is continuously using me in this ministry. This is the first thing I asked from Him when I became His son more than a couple of years ago.

The Lord has allowed me to work for a few months in this Christian NGO and I have learned a lot from this job. I believe this is just a preparation for something better and bigger.

I had an incredible time and experience doing the adolescent reproductive health with HIV & AIDS awareness program and spearheading its pilot testing and training the first batch of facilitators.

Though the latter part of the year was not good, still I am thankful for the things God had taught me through these failures. From falling into a series of sexual sins after almost seventeen months of celibacy, going through an emotional co-dependency for the first time which I am still working out, up to waiting for a new job after my contract has ended; God has been with me all through out even I was not with Him.

The imperative lesson I have learned is that, everyday is a day of submission to God Almighty and never trusting my self especially on the area of my SSA struggle. Yielding to Him every part of my life and believing that He is at work even when I am not faithful is a must.

God has taught me to be more patient and incessantly seek direction and instructions from Him. Lastly, God has reminded me that in all things He works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose for I am more than a conqueror. Romans 8:28.

Before the year has ended, God has spoken to me through my life net group. The Lord has given me Deuteronomy 31 which can be summarized into this, "be courageous and strong for you must go with this people into the land God has promised and the Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you so do not be terrified and discouraged." I believe this has something to do with the discipleship that He's asking me to do.

He also gave me Joshua 3, "consecrate yourself for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things in you." This one is telling me that I must take my Christian walk very seriously, be transformed by the renewing of my mind so that I will be able to test and approve His good, pleasing and perfect will for me as mentioned in Romans 12:2.

God knows there are few risky things in the gay lifestyle which I have not tried that I am curious to try and I surmise, God wants me to give it up and totally offer myself as a living sacrifice. Well I have decided to surrender it to Him, remove it from my mind and not do it and made a promise to consecrate myself for Him but this time to be fully dependent and trust in Him.

Lord grant that this year I may be more holy and walk more closely than ever in all holy conversation. I earnestly desire to be filled with thy holy thoughts to be carried out in holy affections, determined by holy aims and intentions and governed in all my words and actions by holy principles. Oh that golden thread of holiness may run through the whole web of this year.

This is Matthew Henry's New Year's prayer, this is my prayer and may this be yours too. Happy New Year to all!