“Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.” // Genesis 32:28
In the Round One of Fight Club, Pastor Keith Tay taught us that God in His humility came as man, to contend with Jacob, as they wrestled until dawn. His purpose was not to win the match, but to win over the heart of Jacob.
For in his weakness, Jacob admitted his defeat and clung to the Lord, until he received his blessing; a blessing that would open his eyes to his true purpose in life.
“Give time for God to shape us into the masterpiece that He sees in us.” // Rev. Wayne Chang
Oftentimes, we rush God and His process, wanting to get out of the moulding and shaping phase as fast as possible. But in order to become the masterpiece He has in mind for us, we need to be patient and give Him time to work on and through us.
Coming to the end of the Jesus W__ series,
Kysern wraps our heads around the epitome of truth and grace; the essence of Jesus’ humanity.
By coming into our midst, Jesus set himself up in a battle to win our hearts knowing it is one He could potentially lose. That is how we are loved, and how we are called to love.
It was love that motivated Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of all, to bow down and wash the feet of His disciples. Knowing that He came from God and would soon be returning to Him, Jesus chose to show the full extent of His love, humility and selfless service.
If there is no task too low that Jesus would not do for us, how much more should we humble ourselves in service to Him and others?
"Jesus is the good shepherd that loves selflessly."
As the good shepherd, Jesus is the leader who loves His flock relentlessly, who will not abandon us in our times of despair, who will leave the ninety nine whilst waiting for the one that strayed.
Today, let's invite the good shepherd to walk beside us. Then in turn, we can also be a good shepherd to our neighbors.
Calling us to a closer look at our physical and mental state, Pastor @kevric7 shared that living a life in Christ does not strip us of weariness nor burdens.
But that in those times, we can come, celebrate and be fully liberated in His love — because though He shares our powerless nature, He is just as much the limitless Father in whom we find rest.
Everything you need to live the life you're created to live, He has already given you."
Oftentimes, we become trapped in a disillusion that a piece of us is missing and we sit around like flightless birds waiting for God to feed the vacuum in our hearts.
When in truth, He has put everything into us and is simply waiting for us to draw closer to Him, to grow with Him and to trust that there is a future in the life He has created for us.
So let's take flight and go to Him; for with intimacy, comes access to all the powers He has bestowed upon us.
"God looked into our world – the world He made – and saw us destroying ourselves and the world by turning away from Him. It filled His heart with pain and so He wrote Himself into our story, our world."
This, is the essence of the love of God that is depicted in the Bible - a love that is selfless and all consuming for all who believe.
Emphasizing on the humanity of Christ, Pastor @keith_tay drew us in to a different aspect of Jesus' love for us.
Setting aside His Godliness, He chose to embrace the ordinary and walk with us, so that we don't dwell on weakness but learn to overcome sin, just as He did.
"But God raises us above our circumstances."
The fears and trials in our lives may try to paralyze us, but our faith in God allows to overcome any and all things. So, let us always carry this language of faith in our lives and be empowered in all that we do!
By becoming man, Jesus faced the same challenges, temptations and choices that we do, yet rose above it all. So no matter how big our trials may seem, take heart that we serve a compassionate and empathetic God who will always walk with us.
In the last part of the Word series, Pastor @andrewlau1022 taught us to see our God as one who teaches; to see the Word as one that transforms.
With His grace as our instruction and His Word as our wisdom, we are abundantly equipped to learn and ultimately, to walk in His way.
"Our best defence in the fight against, and overcoming the challenges of life is meditation on the Word of God – the constant rehearsal of those truths in our lives."
God's presence and work in our lives are not one-off occurrences, they are an everlasting salvation planned out by Him. It is then in our hands to continuously draw strength from His Word and trust in His Love for us.
"Without the revelation of the Word of God, we are caught in the vortex of the voices of men."
What instead should be the anchor and cornerstone of every believer's being? It is the Scripture that is alive. Let the Word be at the center of our core.
Collective was build so that we may be a people who loves like Christ, lives with His fullness and imagines a future far greater than ourselves.
And behold, that future begins in our faith today!
"There is an eternal prize that awaits those who remain faithful to the Lord."
While love is the driving force, having the wisdom to do life His way is the goal. Though we may falter or stall in spreading His Word and walking with Him, continue to trust in Him; and our works will be limitless.
“Home is where the never-interrupted voice of love speaks, giving us life and love.”
With reckless love and endless grace, God always accepts us home with the open arms of a loving father. His forgiveness is waiting for us; waiting to embrace us in His love once again.
Pushing aside all the white noise and overlapping voices, we open our hearts to the power of His Word; that they are not mere instructions, but the way of life gifted by God Himself to those who commit and believe.
Like how it became flesh to save us, it has now become the strength that anchors and drives us!
"If we Forbid tongues, then we are challenging God, since God is the initiator and giver of gifts."
Speaking in tongues was a phenomenon that marked the Holy Spirit filling the believers on the day of Pentecost. This gift should be a part of our regular communion with God, remembering that we are empowered to be witness for Jesus Christ.
Through unanswered prayers, God invites us to be spiritually intimate with Him, for prayers are an interaction with God, not a service transaction. Only through living the questions and living life in accordance to His plan do we mature spiritually.
Just as God interrupted Mary's plans for His purpose, our desires may not be the life that God wants for us. So let us learn to hear His voice, to know His heart more; that His calling for us be revealed when we trust that He has a perfect and loving plan.
Everywhere God is, prayer is. Since God is everywhere, so prayer must permeate every area of our lives. Prayer is the key to everything we need to do and be in life. Let us collectively make space to pray and have an intentional awareness to God's presence in our busy lives.
Fruit-bearing for God is not a human possibility; it is Christ's work through us. We were reminded in this timely manner that obedience to God does not build a wall of restrictions, but instead connects us to the source of life that is Jesus.
God wants us to journey through life with Him eternally, by having faith, emulating His work and recognizing Him as our savior.
Let us who believe in Jesus participate in His works, become His sheep and share in His life.
Eternal life is not simply life that never ends, but a fullness of life that is unending.
Eternal life begins when we give our heart to Jesus. Living life with Christ and getting to know Him intimately as we navigate through life, marks the beginning of this gift. Eternal life starts here on earth!
When our souls are anchored in God, achievements & possessions matter less.
Like trees planted by streams of water, we will stand strong no matter the weather, because our souls are constantly nourished by the living water of God.
What was hurtful because of human error, became a symbol of God's love and mercy. We are reminded that in brokenness, we should always turn and depend on God. His love is stronger than any sin, and our salvation is an everlasting promise.
if our works are for Jesus and Jesus only, then it is also in Him we find true rest. Let us not hurry but instead, do things in His time and teach our souls to slow down and enjoy the Sabbath that God intended.
When you are connected to God, rivers of living water will flow from you!
Still and unmoved, it nourishes what's nearby. But when it flows, it reaches far and sustains those beyond us; much like the love God has placed in us.
We live in an imperfect world with broken people serving a perfect God whose unconventional love puts us in line with suffering.
But in this act, He blesses us with the gift of thriving in adversity; so that we continue to shine through darkness, bringing light to all those around us.
While clothes we put on every morning tell a story about who we are and send a message on how we think, even more important is what we wear within. Let is be the garment of praise that God has prepared for us, His children; let us don the love of Christ that builds us, that we may build others too.
When we embarked on a futurist's journey last year, our goals were set on building a sustainable church of the future. This year, our eyes remain on that goal, but with an urgency driven by God's most powerful gift-love.