The Power of God’s Promises

Reading a post titled, “Standing On God’s Promises,” today reminded me just how life-saving God’s promises can be. The power of God’s promises are extraordinary. They can be a person’s reason for pressing on and looking forward to better days ahead in the midst of life’s storms.

Right now hundreds of people are struggling with troubles and worries in their personal lives. I wanted to share 3 of my favorite Bible promises just in case someone needs to hear them:

“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus”. Phillipians 4:19

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” Luke 12:22-24

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

If you are going through some tough times, turn to God. Through his words,prayer, and meditation you will find comfort and solace. The power of God’s promises is immeasurable.

Raising Strong Yet Gentle Kids: Our Task as Parents

I came across this statement today from Toughen Up, Encourage or Both?: “As parents, it’s not our job to toughen up our children to face a cruel and heartless world. It is our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.” These words sure did made me do a lot of thinking. (And I bet it will do the same thing to you now.)

So, what are we supposed to do as parents? Do we help our children toughen up and be ready to face the heartless world, or do we help them to become individuals who make the world less cruel? I say, we do both. We can do that, right? Raising strong yet gentle kids doesn’t seem like too much to ask for. Kids who are not only able to protect themselves from the harms of the world, but are also able to repel evil with kindness and overcome hatred with love.

On our own, this may be a near-to-impossible feat. But with the help of our ultimate parent, up in heaven, sure we can! I pray to God that raising strong yet gentle kids is not a unattainable feat for parents.

God Is Not Finished With You Yet

I started my morning readings with this honest and very inspiring post: “For The Times When You Feel Like You’re Falling To Pieces.” The piece centered on the reassuring words of Philippians 1:6, “I am confident that the Creator, who has begun such a great work among you, will not stop in mid-design but will keep perfecting you until the day Jesus the Anointed, our Liberating King, returns to redeem the world.”

I felt so wonderful starting my day with a reminder that I have a God and Father who is constantly working to make me become the best me that I can be–transforming my mistakes into miracles and using my failures to mold me into a wiser, stronger and more faithful individual. God is not finished with you yet, no matter how despondent you’re feeling.

In my existence, I have questioned God so many times; but he has never forsaken me. He has never gone tired of reminding me that he has great plans in store for me. So for days when you feel like your life is in a mess, be patient, God is not finished with you yet.

How Much Time Does God Require From Us?

A post I came across this morning had this title, “How much TIME does God need?” And this very question filled my mind all day. Indeed, how much time are we supposed to give to the Lord? How much time does God require from us? And as I searched the Scriptures and paused for meditation, I realized that God requires no less than 24 hours of everyday from me. Does this mean I am not entitled to eating, sleeping or going to work? Of course not!

God requires 24 hours from us everyday, but this does not mean he doesn’t want us to do anything all our lives. God simply wants us to make him the center of everything that we do–to always have him in our minds for every action that we make. We must remember that we are just mere stewards of our time, so we must not forget to faithfully served God with the time he has given to each of us.

I pray today that in the midst of our busy lives, we won’t neglect the God that has constantly provided us with everything that we need. How much time does God require from us? Just as much as we require from him. That is the beauty of our relationship with God.

What God Won’t Do

A post titled, “What God Can And Cannot Do,” caught my eye today. My favorite part of the article is when the author made a simple yet profound comparison of God’s power with that of Aslan (the lion king from C.S. Lewis’ Narnia series). Based on a portion of the story, the author had these words, “No matter how hard Aslan tried, no matter the great miracles he performed, or even how much he desired in his heart that the dwarfs be set free, he could not give them that freedom because they refused his help.” This is a nice comparison to what God won’t do for us if we refuse his love.

It is clear in the Bible what Jesus said, “For with God, nothing is impossible. (Luke 1:37)” There are certain things that God won’t do, not because he is unable to, but because he loves us so much. He cannot make us feel things we don’t want to feel or do things we don’t want to do–in short God will not force us into anything that is against our free will. He will not do anything that will diminish the precious gift that he has given all of us–the gift of choice. Of course, what God won’t do depends on our own actions and feelings towards his love.

Always a Child of God: Pope Francis’ Wise Words

Isn’t it wonderful to know that no matter how our lives turn out, how many times we fail, or how many time we lose our way, you are always a child of God! How comforting is that fact? This is what the Pope reminded the entire Catholic Church in his homily during Mass on Thursday at the Casa Santa Marta.

At the close of his homily, he said these beautiful words, “We are saved in Jesus Christ and no one can take from us this ‘identity card.’ This is how I identify myself: as a child of God. What a beautiful identity!”

Want proof? See these Bible texts:

John 10:28-29  “I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me, for my Father has given them to me, and he is more powerful than anyone else. No one can snatch them from the Father’s hand.” 

John 1:12 “Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, he gave the right to become children of God.”

Galatians 3:26 “For you are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.”

If you want to read more about the Pope’s homily, here it is: “No one can take away our identity as children of God.” You are always a child of God, don’t forget that!

Having Child-Like Faith

Have you watched the animated movie “Rise of The Guardians?” I watched it with my kids a while back. Today I was wonderfully reminded of it by Sr. Marie Paul Curley’s blog post on The Catholic Writers Guild site titled, “Nurturing Our Writing with a Playful Spirit.” The post made me see the film in a whole new perspective. It contains a very valuable lesson–the importance of having child-like faith.

In the Bible, Jesus in Mark 10:15, “Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.” Do you remember how it feels like to be a child? To be full of wonder, innocence, courage and free of worries, fears or cares? That is how God wants us to be. To submit ourselves to him and have faith in his goodness with  no trace of doubt or hesitation. To wake up each day believing that everything is going to be just fine. Having child-like faith that God will make everything work out in the long run isn’t easy. It amazes me how adults can really learn things from children every day. Sometimes they have life more figured out than we do!

Through God’s Love We’re As Good As New

I read a short but very wonderful illustration of God’s Loving Restoration this morning. The author likened each sinner to an “old discarded car that appears worthless except for the one who views it through eyes of love.” However through God’s love we’re as good as new.

Yes, we are all like beaten-up old cars that have practically no value, but God because of his great love for us was willing to pay a high price just to get us to be what we are really meant to be–spiritually and morally upright and glorious. He so willingly sacrificed his only begotten Son just to give us all undeserving and rebellious sons and daughters a chance to be new again.

Revelation 21:5 says, “Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.

Yes, God will give you a new life, a new hope and a new heart; but only if you will let him. Will you? Through God’s love we’re as good as new, and that is something that makes me happy.

Comparing Yourself Against the Love of God

I believe that we all acknowledge the fact that we are all sinners. When we actually own up to our sins, do we do so completely and whole heartedly? Or do we say to ourselves, “Yes, I know that I am a sinner, but I know that my sins are not as great as (insert name here).” Instead of comparing yourself to your fellow man or woman, maybe you should be comparing yourself against the love of God.

Acknowledging our sins is a huge part of repentance, however a truly repentant heart does not feel the need to compare himself to another person. Let me quote the beautiful words by Fr. David Barnes about true repentance in his article, “I’m Not the Best Catholic in the Word. No Kidding. Repent:”

Today in the Gospel, a woman washes the feet of Jesus with her tears, dries them with her hair, and anoints them with costly ointment. This is what repentance looks like. She teaches us what it means to know God’s love. She didn’t come to Jesus and say, “I’m not the best person in the world, but there are people who are a lot worse than me.” She humbled herself before Christ. In that moment, she wasn’t comparing herself to all of the other sinners. She was comparing herself against the love of God.

To understand just how sinful we are, we should not look to our fellow men; but we should look at the greatness of God’s love. Let us not allow our hearts to be filled with pride by giving into the folly that is comparing ourselves with our fellow men. Instead, let us allow ourselves to be deeply immersed in God’s love that he may create in us a truly repentant heart. Comparing yourself against the love of God should be the yardstick.

Surrender Your Life to God: He Knows What He is Doing

Have you read the story of Abraham being asked by God to sacrifice his only son Isaac? If you haven’t, you can find it in Genesis 22:1-13. I was inspired to re-read this story after reading a blog post this morning titled, “Being Abraham to Our Little Isaacs,”As a parent, I find this story as one of the most difficult to understand but also one of the most profound. Here, the Lord tells a father (Abraham) to sacrifice his only son (Isaac) as a burnt offering. If God said this to you, what would you do? Would you do as Abraham did and obey God? Frankly, I don’t know what to do if I was in Abraham’s shoes. It is difficult to completely surrender your life to God, even though inside we know it is right.

But as you should know now (if you read the story), God never really did allow Abraham to slaughter and sacrifice his son. And I believe God will never do such thing to any of us.

The lesson I take from this story is that we need to completely surrender our lives and the lives of our children to the Lord even in difficult times because he knows exactly what he is doing. So surrender your life to God.