Monday, May 30, 2011

How I Came to Christ

**I actually wrote this back in Sept. 2009 but figured it would be appropriate to post how I came to Christ on my blog**

2 Corinthians 1:3-4
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.”

It all started 6 years ago.. I was working a job at Baskin Robbins and I remember the day like it was yesterday. Reason being is that from that day forward my life would never be the same. I still remember the drink I took a few sips of that day, a Cappuccino Blast, and also that I was going to see my favorite band at the time at a show somewhere in Riverside.

About half way through my shift I started feeling very dizzy, and decided to cool off on my own in the Restroom. I practically collapsed as my heart started racing while my stomach knotted up and I gagged as the temperature of my body rose. I went home early that day only to be too sick to go to the show that night. Not knowing what was wrong with me, this continued, so much to a point where I dropped out of school and had lost my job.

Not knowing what was wrong, I began to visit different Dr.’s in the U.S. None of these doctors could diagnose me and were unable to treat me. I ended going to Mexico to get checked out there (affordable treatments: p) but they were also unable to figure out what was wrong with me.

I came back, and a few weeks later I had an episode so strong that I literally thought that I was going to die. I was out of it, not knowing what was going on. My mom had told me that she placed her hand on me and I had actually burned her because my body was so hot.

It was this night that the Lord came to me and reached out to me.. I responded and that night I felt an overwhelming peace from Him and He had instantly took away my fears and had healed me. He had actually also let me know exactly what was wrong with me and I had to actually tell the doctors myself that it was God who told me what was wrong. I’m sure they were amazed that God diagnosed me, since they couldn’t figure it out!

Although my Spirit was strong after this because of Him and what He had done , my body still had its reactions, and I was unable to leave my home for 3 months. For the first few years it was really hard trying to get back to normal, and to be honest physically I haven’t been anywhere near normal since before all this began.
Just two days ago I had another one of these episodes, right before I was getting ready to speak somewhere and all I could think about is how bad the timing was, I was really hurting. I found myself praying for God to take it away and yet nothing was happening. I was very desperate and I began to feel as if He wasn’t hearing my cries. He began to remind me that people were praying for me for the night, whether or not they knew something like this would happen. It had been so long since I had an episode, and again I couldn’t help but think of the bad timing.

I praise God that I was able to get through the message without anyone noticing what I was feeling, but my body has been going through it still for the past two days. What God keeps bringing back to memory as I ask Him to take this all away is the situation that Paul faced. Paul pleaded with God to take his thorn in the flesh away.. and what did God respond with? “My grace is sufficient for you..” and so like Paul, I’m faced with the challenge of sucking up my feelings and relying on God’s grace.

But why would God even allow His children to keep the thorn in the flesh? Why doesn’t He just take it away? Well.. According to the Scripture I provided above, we need to go through this for a reason. I think about the many people who face the same problem that I do, and how much comfort they would feel knowing that God had helped me through the problem when I felt hopeless, and that God can do the same for them as well. I guess this is part of what it would mean to be a living sacrifice.. willing to give up yourself in order to be of good use to our Maker.

A lot of what God will allow us to go through is not easy, but it is necessary, especially if we want Him to have His will done, on earth as it is in heaven. The hardest thing is to be that living sacrifice for the Lord. But if it means ministering to so many lost and hurting souls by giving them hope in Jesus Christ by sharing what He has done for us, wouldn’t it be worth it?

Here's an audio of me sharing my testimony while sharing a message:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Men.. listen to your wives!

A couple of months ago, Monica and I were looking at a potential place to move into.
I fell in love with it. I loved the fact that it was two stories, had 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. I loved that it also had an office and the highlight for me was the creek in the backyard. I thought this place was perfect.

Monica on the other hand had some issues with the place. For one, she didn't like how the office was located at the very entrance of the home. Something about that layout made it weird for her. Another concern for her was the fact that the house was covered in carpet. I had asked her what the big deal was about carpet, she said she was worried that our cat would stain it if he threw up on it.

After meeting with the landlord, we had told her that we would discuss it and get back to her. I was pretty adamant about getting this place and Monica was pretty adamant about not getting it. Naturally, we argued about it (because that's what sinners do and that's exactly what we are, sinners!).

In the midst of all the arguing we both resorted to making this decision the way we would usually make big decisions: Pray about it, then if we agree to go forward we will do it, if not then we won't.

And so we prayed, discussed it the next day and we were still not on the same page. I was pretty upset. My thought was the fact that I was the leader of the home and that I should have the final say, but Monica really stated concerns. She kept pointing out the fact that our cat would throw up on the carpet! I argued that we shouldn't worry about that and that our cat would be fine. We came to the conclusion that maybe it was not of the Lord, because we were not in agreement about it.

A part of me felt as if Monica was in the wrong, because I felt that she was not submitting, so I was upset about it.

The next day though, our cat, who I was so sure would not get sick started getting the runs and vomiting everywhere. This lasted for two days and it was quite a mess to clean up! Also, most recently I've found that the place I wanted so badly ended up in an area where it has been flooding since the start of Spring.

I am seeing now that God did not want us there and that He had something easy, better, and more affordable in mind for us.

It brings me to the conclusion that we should really listen to our wives.

In fact, the Lord had also showed me that listening to your wife (even in the biggest of decisions) is Biblical. God told Abraham to listen to his wife in the way they would handle Ishmael. Abraham's wife Sarah asked Abraham to get rid of Ishmael, and so he did (as hard as that was!) Also, Samuel's mom Hannah decided that when Samuel was born she was going to drop him off at the temple and give him to the Lord. As hard as this might have been on her husband, he listened to his wife, trusted her and agreed to give him to the Lord. Because of these men listening to their wives, God was able to do amazing things.

Don't get me wrong, I am in no way saying that God has not called men to lead, He has, but the truth is that God will give vision to a man's wife and may save the couple from heading into disaster (Just look at Esther and Xerces!)

So as men, we ought to stop with the power trips and be flexible to how the Lord might want to speak to us through our awesome wives.