God is so good and faithful. And awesome. How many times have we sinned and walked in carnality? If I was God, the majority of the world would have been destroyed because of my impatience ( one of my resolutions for next year). I don't get how God can love a creation who constantly neglects Him and does their own tidings. Any whose, I've been spending my last days of 2013 in Quincy, MA. It was to attend my cousin's blessing for her marriage. Bostonian's have a reason to be flaunting their Patriots and Bruins jerseys everywhere...they actually win. That is kinda off topic, but seriously Leafs' fans aren't you embarrassed?
My cousin and her husband became spiritual recently and it was a shocker to me. They are new Christians, so please continue to pray for them up. Within, my first few days of staying there I lashed out at them. It was nice for us to humble ourselves, because like my cousin in law said " Obviously God doesn't want us to be mad, so the devil is trying to use this opportunity". I was perplexed on what made them turn to faith. I mean they seem to have pretty comfortable jobs and they can live off their love right? But my cousin in law basically paraphrased what his pastor consistently re-iterates each week : You can't give God 60 or 90 percent, it's all or nothing. He appreciated the fact that his pastor doesn't tickle your fancy but just tells it like it is.
This Monday morning I had a dream. It looked similar to lets say Grand Central station. There were countless people just going to places. I saw people I knew and when I said Hi to them, they didn't even acknowledge me. Just too busy I suppose. Everyone had destinations and places to go and I was just watching people for a couple of minutes. Finally, I woke up and I was like : What is the meaning of that? I felt God telling me that most people are busybodies always trying to occupy themselves with seemingly important stuff that they forget God or even looking after themselves (could be spiritual or things like exercise). We all have time we just have to utilize it in the right way.
How does this tie in with the new year? Well, I think if we've experienced a less than stellar year, all we need to do is go back to God and give him our 100 percent. God is always willing to refresh us, to renew us, only if we are willing to receive Him. You can go murder someone and if you're truly remorseful God will give you a second chance. This year can be utilized for God's glory. But, one thing I think God wants us to really focus on is the discipline that we exercise in our lives. I don't think we can be Christian and eat garbage, spend copious amount of hours on TV, procrastinating, neglecting thy body...I think you get the point. I think God wants us to be like Navy Seals when doing tasks and pay close attention to detail. Although, the world may have lower standards, we must acknowledge that we are serving a higher purpose...a higher being. Below, I posted some videos that I strongly urge you to watch that I believe emphasize the importance of discipline as well as an article on why our prayers aren't answered. If you take the time to go through these I promise you that you will be blessed and perhaps even challenged and convicted. I'm not sure yet but perhaps I will do weekly updates on how my discipline is going to keep myself accountable and also be an example. Have a great year and let's be champions for Christ!
Discipline and Diligence in our Youth
Just because God gave us a body, doesn't mean we abuse it!
God we thank you for 2013 and the souls you have brought to your throne. We thank You for 2014 and the souls you will bring. We thank you for the diligence and steadfastness that we will adopt. We thank you that we can look ahead to greener pastures and the dreams you have envisioned for us. We will never give up. Amen.
I'm a bit taken aback. Right now as I'm typing this I'm kind of shaking. And of course I would be as I was just involved in a major accident. For Pete's sake all I wanted to do was be a diligent teen and get some laundry done. I guess God had something else in mind. Prior to the accident, I went to the doctor's for a follow-up appointment. Everything was fine. I just wanted to go home and get my laundry and actually do it at the laundro-mat. Driving seemed to be okay, but I did notice that there was some difficulty braking. This was because there was snow. My uncle did tell me that in snowy conditions I may have to pump my brakes. So I practiced that on the smaller roads and proceeded with my day. I also changed my gear from the regular D5 to D4/ D3. I went to the bank to ask the teller some questions about my student loan. Left the bank, got in my car and proceeded to go do my laundry. My car was coming out of a slight hill, so I guess, that coupled with the snow was not good. As I was leaving a parking lot, another pick up truck was on the road. I saw the pick up truck and started braking, but my brakes were like au contraire my friend. The pick up truck saw me and was not slowing down at all. My car kept on going and everything felt like slow motion to me. Eventually, the impact occurred. I thought I was going to black out or something but I was still conscious and could see the air bags eject themselves. My car remained in place. I saw his car. The side of his car had some fluid dripping profusely and his headlight was damaged. I smelled smoke in my car and I was reminded of Paul Walker's explosion, so I immediately left the car fearing that it would explode. It didn't. I was so flustered and there were so many passerby's just looking at the ongoing scene. For once, I was really calm. Normally, I would have a panic attack and just freeze. But, I called my pastor ( I was scared to call my uncle for fear of being reprimanded). My youth pastor consoled me. I eventually gathered the moxie to call my uncle. Then I went to the back of my car and kinda just waited it out...hoping...praying. The other person involved in the accident seemed pretty nice, the tow truck people seemed really understanding. I was just praying that my uncle wouldn't get mad. I started thinking how I was a failure and I couldn't do one thing right. I could see the dangerous cycle my thoughts were taking so I just asked God to help me. I did realize that some people numb out and try to forget by doing drugs and alcohol. But, I realized it takes a real person to deal with reality, so that's what I did. My uncle did come and of course he was like " Why did you go to the bank" etc, but then he calmed down and kinda just accepted it. He was probably thinking if I didn't go to the bank, this would not have happened. He told me later on that something was telling him before he got home to tell me not to use the car if I did not have an important reason to use it. I often counter such claims with my hubris attitude so..he didn't. By the time he came home I already left, so that's that.
Eventually the police officer came. Nice lady. I just told her You know I was just trying to get some laundry done not expecting this to happen. She got my driver's ID, my uncle's insurance and we both waited for the police officer's verdict. Meanwhile I'm praying God just give me a Christmas miracle. I don't want any presents but I know this could be really bad for uncle's insurance and such. I tried to believe that there was nothing I could say or do to change anything. I thanked Him for his grace. My uncle did prep me for what the consequences could be. Like this incident could really screw up my driver's record. I was ready to come to terms with that. You know perhaps I deserved it. The police officer comes and she says something along the lines of, " I know you've been driving and working really hard. I understand the snow could have really impacted your driving. Your new and all. So today, I'm just giving you a warning." Praise God, I can still live my Nascar dreams ( just kidding) I also do not have to pay 110 dollars. She did caution me to avoid hills in this weather if possible. So now I am just praying that God would give divine favour over my uncle's insurance and over the other person's car. The police officer lady (haha), also told me to e-mail her if I experience any injuries. I truly think without a doubt that God was protecting me. Like I will post pictures, but the pick up truck was so close to hitting me. So close. I could have died or had severe injuries. But I am thankful to God, I have nothing.
So, what do I get out of all this :
Well, like the title of my post says my senior pastor informed me that for a year I would be going through difficult things. This thought occurred in my car while I was rubbing my hands as result of being anxious and cold waiting for my uncle to come.
Things I don't understand. Like, my mom going to the hospital for fibroids. Or my brother, who was like an anchor to me being in the hospital for an extended period of time. Or my step-sister dying at age 4. I honestly don't understand why. Like just before I left the house I was praying and listening to the Word. Am I in the wrong or?? But through these things I'm trying to cling onto God, trying to trust Him. Trying to be grateful for life. So that's all there is to it.
Thank you uncle for coming.
Why are you saying thank you, Habiba, it's my job to come and help you. I take care of people who are not my family, how more so ones in my house. I take care of those in my house. I'm just grateful that you're okay.
I really appreciate that because often times I feel like a burden to them, me just sucking up resources. But it kinda reminds me of the Father's love for His children. He wants to bless us. He wants to make sure that every need we have is met. I kinda have difficulty coming to terms with that because at times I can have an independent spirit, you know, self-reliant. But, I guess sometimes God puts you in circumstances where you are forced to call for help and humble yourself.
All in all, I'm grateful for my life. And please pray that my uncle has favour with the insurance company.
Would you spend your time the way you do
Forsake God the way you do
Not read the Word
Not be bold about Christ
My friends, we are in a generation where the majority of people think we are lunatics
Lord, I pray that my love of people would be greater than my fear of them
Know ye not that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God
We have forsaken God for self-improvement modules
Trying to make ourselves presentable for the world
Whilst neglecting something so great as salvation
I'm talking about holiness
The non-watered down version of the gospel
If it doesn't concern you that the majority of people you will encounter in life are going to hell
Then dear brothers and sisters we have a problem
You'd rather save your face then save your brother or sister from eternal torment
What if they don't like me?
Trust me, they certainly won't like you when they are in the lake of fire that never dies
Knowing that certainly if you had some moxie
And value for the friendship
You would have certainly talked to them
What sin are you holding that is greater than your eternal reward
Cut it off
In our self-righteousness
We have neglected to humble ourselves to a Saviour who is more than sufficient
People don't wanna turn to Christianity when the very people supporting it
Are just like them
We are called to be the salt
But we have lost our flavour
Renew your mind
All the devil needs is a foothold
To he who endures he will be rewarded a crown of life.
Just when I want to give up. Just when I want to throw in the towel. The Lord sends an encourager - in the most unlikeliest of places, an atheist! Well, he is not an atheist anymore. In highschool, I tried reaching out to this fellow but according to my friend he dismissed me as " a nice girl, but overtly religious". He was a very rational and logical man. So it was no surprise that he excelled at math and science. Living the typical life of an over-achiever he went to the University of Toronto for the prestigious civil engineering program. After high school, I would pray for him here and there, but I was thinking he would definitely have his atheistic beliefs strengthened at that secular university.
Let's fast forward to me. I've been kinda discouraged lately with people's attitude to Christianity. It seems those I thought would be in the game, just gave up. For example, a couple of years ago ago my friends and I were talking about how we would be 21 and still serving Christ. Sadly, those friends no longer follow God (I'm turning 20 soon). Such feelings were compounded with death and everyone hating God. I guess I was like Job and I was like why?
Well, recently the former friend I talked about added me on Facebook. I was shocked because I think he deleted me or something ( don't worry no hard feelings haha). And he initiated a conversation with me. I was a bit taken aback. I was thinking that's peculiar he's not the one to initiate convos, am I suddenly cool or something? Well, he rather bluntly told me that he became a Christian (after I asked how he was). My jaw dropped to the floor, then I had to roll it back up. Wait a minute, wait a minute Mr.Richard Dawkins Jr. a Christian... well there might be a God after all.
He said one of the people in his class caused him to have faith in God. The classmate's countenance was always a happy one - despite being in a rigorous and tedious program. Trust me, engineering will turn the most optimistic, suicidal. So Mr.Rational asked the lady, why she always had a smile on her face and she rather bluntly stated that she is a devout Christian. I guess all reason and logic is defied. It was encouraging to see that God does truly work in mysterious ways. He even encouraged me to have faith again, that the most logical can take a leap of faith. Originally I wanted to include excerpts of our conversation, but I will just link you to his story. He explains it in a better manner than myself (it's his story anyways)...so read peasants READ!
When talking about his conversion I was reminded of this scripture :
6 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. 7 So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. 8 The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. 9 For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.
1 Corinthians 3:6-9
I initially reached out to my friend in grade 10 and once again in grade 12 (before deeming him a lost cause - forgive me God) . Thus , it was 4 years after initially reaching out to him, that God touched him. I also give credit to those who prayed and also reached out to him throughout the years. Don't be discouraged if you don't see instantaneous salvation, because sometimes it takes the watering of prayer to bear fruit. I also don't want to boast of my own works, it is through the power of God, that this is possible. We cannot get prideful or become self-righteous...so no it's solo Cristo. And don't limit your faith by saying God can't reach out to this person for reasons 'x,y,z'. If God can change God-hating Saul, he can change anyone.
Lets not doubt the power of prayer and fasting and believe for multitudes to be saved.
My Song for this week , which I believe pertains to this situation: