February 26, 2014 § Leave a comment
I woke up today with my left ankle hurting. It must have been the cold air… The weather is somehow involved with my ankle hurting when I walked on it today. However, looking back to the original birth of this pain, I remember how grateful I am to be walking today. God gave me strength to persevere through, he gave me joy as if being a crippled didn’t matter, but what mattered is that I kept going in pursuit of God. That brings me joy, and hope that one day this pain will be healed. The extent of his love goes far beyond what I can ever imagine.
So to find myself in the comfort of the Lord brought my warmth and thanks. So I will continue to praise the Lord for all that he has done in my life, even through the smallest things that are generally missed.
February 21, 2014 § Leave a comment
I was talking to a friend today, I was to meet her at Benny’s cafe at Broadway and Larch. Now at the time before meeting her, I wasn’t so sure where this place was, but I had a vivid picture pass through my mind. I realized that I’ve been there once before. When I started walking to this place after getting off the 99 b-line, my heart jumped because what I had envisioned was exactly what was being shown before me. Why did I remember this place? A place where I’ve only been to once? I believe God brought me this image so I wouldn’t have to worry about finding the right place.
Later on in the conversation, she asked me who she saw in Seattle. She told me to guess and it was a person from Open Door. A picture of Natasha flashed in my mind. I guessed Natasha and she said yes. I told her that was a random guess. What a coincidence. Or maybe it wasn’t a coincidence but God’s divine message. That’s so cool. God was so present during our conversion that my excitement for him grew even more! It’s exactly what I had been praying for – and it was Isaac who had suggested it to me.
It’s when I talk about God related topics: Spiritual conversations, gifts, or pieces of my testimony.. During and Afterwards I get pumped up, excited and filled with his joy. I just want to talk about Him forever!
February 18, 2014 § Leave a comment
In the past week I have struggled with anxiety and worries. My thoughts have been so attached to a game that my brain hasn’t been able to shut off. It feels like I have consumed so much caffeine that I can’t sleep. I enjoy brainstorming new ideas, but when I try to pray and listen to God, I can’t seem to get anymore. My thoughts have been so clouded and blocked.
My friend Isaac had a vision for me: Brandon is the captain of a warship. Thoughts come into his head. ‘What if there’s a mutiny?’ ‘What if we have stowaways?’ ‘What if we crash?’ He continues to command the ship and they arrive safely with no troubles.
Convicted by this vision, I decided to take a new route away from my worries. I wanted to do something new and i had some books lying around in my room… so I started reading “The Rabbi’s Heartbeat” and “Practice the presence of God” at night before I sleep.
It’s been so amazing to meditate upon these power revelations in these books which have revealed my wounds to me. Therefore, I am able to repent in tears and ask for forgiveness. His grace brought peace over my clouded thoughts of worries and anxiety.
Thank you Jesus for clearing my clouded thoughts so that I can hear your voice again. I am Returning into your presence once again. Amen
February 12, 2014 § Leave a comment
Since Sunday night, I have been in constant pursue for the Lord. Trying, trying, trying to spend every last bit of my time with him and when I’m not with him, I have been trying to spend it with my friends. It’s strange, I have all this free time which I haven’t been using properly. It’s just been wasting away with worldly distractions. Over and over I watch my boring day go by because I wasn’t spending it with Jesus.
Since Alpha started for the adults and youth, I feel so much more involved with my church and so much more connected to God nowadays. I don’t want to stop giving him my everything, nor to stop to be a model of Christ in my workplace and in my life. When I turned away from him on Saturday, it has been hard to reconnect with him… its like I started over from the beginning, however, I have seen how precious our relationship is. The relationship that I have with Jesus is more precious than any worldly possession ever. Everyday, little by little, I am praying for my friends, praying for the people who I once was close to who now have drifted away. I know God is at work in me, even in the little things.
The enemy keeps attacking me – It is hard, but I am persevering through it. So I will continue to pray without ceasing, and continue to give thanks when I am feeling discouraged. I will breakthrough to victory, where the authority of God stands firm within me.
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” Romans 5:1-5
February 10, 2014 § Leave a comment
Do not worry, do not be anxious…
The moment I take my eyes off God and Look at myself… I become anxious and I start to worry. My falling impact is hurled across the ground where I feel beaten and stepped upon. For I was clothed in his glory, a beaming joy that brought light to all areas the of darkness in my life. However, it’s when I choose to ignore his call and answer to myself… that’s when I begin to fall apart.
Do not worry, do not be anxious…
This seed of darkness has been growing in me since the night of our church’s Alpha banquet. I was attempting to start a conversation between a friend and I… when I heard someone mutter under their breath, “What a sucky conversation.” I felt a seed of discouragement be planted within my heart. Inside my mind I was said, “Ouch!” Now you probably don’t know this about me, but I am not good at facilitating discussion within groups. This is not a strength of mine, it’s a weakness that I wanted to strengthen. A weakness where I wanted God to grow me in. So… Going head into multiple opportunities was… and is a challenge that I am facing right now. (Honest enough, I don’t like what people say about me – and its probably like that for you too. Its hard to live up to everyone’s expectation – it just feels like I’m being weighed down by more problems. In the past I have ignored what people say about me, but recently I have become aware of what really bothers me. Instead of ignoring or trying to bury these expectations, I’ve opened the wound to allow God to heal me. When do these thoughts have been coming up, I try to take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ. It sometimes works, and sometimes silence overtakes me…)
So Why Alpha? And Why Youth Alpha?
Even though I have struggled in both trying to facilitate discussion or conversations, I have been blessed by God through other ways. In Alpha on Tuesday, I was introduced to two parents who wanted their kids to attend Youth Alpha on Fridays. Not a coincidence that I was there to explain a little more about youth alpha. And this past youth alpha on Friday, two people came wanting to do an alpha course – however because they are leaving to shanghai soon, they won’t be able to do the entire course. I told them that I was volunteering with alpha on Tuesdays and briefly told about what we would do. I invited him to come regardless of only attending one Alpha night. I am amazed to see God work in my life, using these circumstances to bless others. It’s convenient that I participate in both and it’s also hard on me. Countless times I have been feeling discouraged, I have been wanting to leave Alpha and cry in a corner. I honestly feel so helpless and because of that, I know that it’s not on me how things will turn out, but it’s all on Jesus to make things turn out. He is the one in control and I’m relearning to place my all my trust back into his hands.
The closer I become to God, The harder the fall will be when I turn away from his face. I’m tired of being a lukewarm Christian. I want to devote my entire life to God, through prayer and posture. The distractions that I have been placing before God are worthless and consuming. So from today forth, I want to recommit my life to Jesus, every single part where I have not given already to Him.
Wherever I go, I want you Jesus to guide me, give me words of wisdom and knowledge. Give me a heart of compassion and patience. Take my hand so that I can join you on your path wherever you go, Whatever you want me to pray for, I’ll pray for it. Through and IN any circumstances, I will be here ready at your feet, listening to your call and willing to step out in faith into any uncomfortable place covered in darkness. For you said, “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Amen.
February 8, 2014 § Leave a comment
A couple of weeks ago, I asked the Lord to change my entire posture into a prayerful posture. This past week after the prayer lesson on Sunday with Paul Williams, I noticed how much a blessing I receive from the Lord when I pray for others. In the past when I have felt discouraged, hopeless, and defeated… I always wanted to pray with people and when I did pray, I received so much life afterwards! It’s like God took away my burdens and struggles and breathed new life into my body again. How revitalizing it is when I pray to God and through constant prayer, my cup is overflowing with his goodness and energy to keep on going!
This week a couple of people have been struggling in a storm, and through both cases I’ve seen God lift them out of the storm and above the clouds! It’s amazing to see God’s light shine brightly and watch the darkness flee and disappear! I give my praises to God continually. Without him, I am nothing, and because of Him I am loved and filled!
From Sunday to today, I have been getting less than 6 hours of sleep, yet every day that I wake up, I have so much energy to expend outward onto others! I have so much joy and so much love for the people at my work and my co workers. I am so pleased to meet new and regulars at my work. I love doing favours for my co workers to help them with their job too! I’m just over joyous. The Joy of the Lord is my STRENGTH. I can truly see His glory being brought down into my workplace.
And I pray that you may be encouraged to not give up in your workplace either! Persevere! Persevere! Persevere! God will give you strength when you rest in him, He will protect you from evil doers underneath his wings, My Lord is my best friend. Thank you Jesus for for this wonderful week! Continue to pour your goodness into my life so I can bring your kingdom into the lives of those who don’t know you yet! Let your presence be thick in my workplace, and let your words speak through my mouth. Use me God. Use me and It is only you who can change the hearts of the people in this world. Love you!
February 3, 2014 § 1 Comment
I woke up this morning at 7:45 am. A prompted thought passed through my mind to phone/text a friend to wake up to come to the student ministry meeting at 8:45 am. I let go of that thought and continued with my morning. In the morning I was contemplating what I should wear and what I should bring to church. I took my time looking at myself in the mirror trying to look my best for today. I didn’t care so much for time and lost my thoughts in what I wanted people see me as this morning. I finally decided and left for a meeting this morning in which we were late. When I arrived at church with my sister, I checked my pockets for my phone but didn’t find it in its place. I was sad that I didn’t have my phone with me because I wouldn’t be able to contact anyone. My sister said something like, “You don’t need it.” Now she didn’t say that, but what she was trying to get across to me was, the world isn’t going to end, you’ll be fine. Okay… okay. So I let it go for the morning.
During the morning I had a chance to talk to Silvia and Edete after the out meeting had ended. A simple response to, “How are you doing Brandon?” I said, God has been teaching me not to worry and this morning he was saying, “Stop!. Stop looking at your phone and Look at me!” A rebuke from God was what I needed to hear and then I became convicted.
Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For 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! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest? Luke 12:22-26
I have been worrying and been not knowing what to do with my worries. Silvia told me to pray out Loud, “Jesus, I give you this worry of____. And I thank you for taking my worry of ____.” As she mentioned this to me, the verse 2 Corinthians 10:5 appeared in my mind, “… take captive every thought [and] make it obedient to Christ.” Already, God was working in me today, no matter how many times I messed up – he constantly forgave me.
During the Worship part of our service, I began to be reminded of and connected to God. Every Song we sang this morning moved me in a way which was healing and renewing. Heading into Community hour to hear Joe preach, I started to feel uplifted and excited for a connected message from God. Throughout his sermon my thoughts were focused from me To Jesus. I began to stop seeing myself as the centre and started to see Christ more. I asked myself three questions for God to respond to me today. 1) God how would you like me to respond to others today? 2) God tell me something about myself I don’t know. 3) God what do you want me to offer to you today? Joe was teaching us a bible verse: Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, and in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” Later he told us How God guides us: And through 4 ways. 1) Through the Bible, 2) Through the Spirit, 3) Through each Other, 4) and through our Circumstances. During the Second way, I had a vision: I saw Jesus/Holy Spirit open a door into our hearts and he was bringing the light into our darkness. Right after, Joe mentioned about Jesus opening a door into us and walking in and living in us.
After church, there was a prayer meeting. Before the the meeting I was deciding if I should be a volunteer for Alpha held on Tuesday for Adults and college and career students (Open Door). The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to volunteer. I wanted to do more than just bring my friends. I Eventually made up my mind to be a volunteer for Alpha – at this time I was thinking to be a helper. One who listens, co facilitates, and prays. The Prayer meeting was phenomenal, I absolutely loved everything that I heard from Paul Williams and Leslie-Ann. We had a small prayer session (1 on 1), and when my prayer buddy was praying for me, I heard God’s confirmation through his prayer. To be encouraged to lead. That’s it! God responded and I am feeling willing to facilitate the Open Door table at Alpha. Listening to Leslie-Ann’s story about not knowing what to do when she was the one leading prayer and listening for God’s words of knowledge, God gave her the words and used everyone accordingly. I don’t feel ready, in fact, I feel scared, but I know that God will equip me and use me. I feel encouraged and excited to step out in faith into something I’m not generally taking part of because I am the one who likes to work behind the scenes. It’s strange, I know God is working through my life, bring me this passion to serve, to meet people and just to love them bountiful. I want to learn how to lead and be a confident leader. And in all that I do, I will point back the glory to God – He is the one who deserves our praise!
Wow. I am blown away by everything so far!
Afterwards, I went to celebrate Brian’s birthday with a few people from the church. It was relaxing to let go and chill, celebrate, talk, laugh, and rest. In the evening, Edete made dinner for us. I had a great opportunity to share what God has been doing in my life over the past couple of weeks. It’s been a long time since I had such a great spiritual and in depth conversation. I absolutely love one on ones! I shared a little bit of how God has been using me as a missionary in my work place. During the prayer meeting and when I shared a bit of my story to Russ, Edete, and Ruth at my table. Ruth asked, “Are you fooling around at work?” I replied, “No, I love working there.” I briefly explained my role at White Spot and then she asked, “Did God call you there?” I joyfully responded, “Yes! God called me to work there and right now I’m starting to get to know the regular customers and I’m starting to see His fruit in my workplace.” She smiled and I forget what she said after that. I honestly appreciated her response to my actions and choices in my life right now. I felt like that was God saying to me, “What you are doing right now is Perfect. What you are doing right now is what I want you to do.” I wanted to cry, my spirit moved, and God gave me an answer I have been longing for… for a long time.
God I thank you for responding to me today. I thank you for giving me an amazing community, and set of friends and family members! I want to be changed by you to became a better person, to be ready and willing for your call. Help me to give me strength as temptation draws near, so that I can give you my thoughts and my everything. Wake me up to listen to your promptings and push me to do them. Jesus, I’m sorry for acting the way I have been and for making the world revolve me instead of you. I Thank you Jesus for forgiving me and dying on the cross. And I pray that you will always fill me up the Holy Spirit forever and ever. Amen