Category: God’s Word


Dear Diary,

My aunt died last Monday.  Last time I saw her was on New Year’s day for our yearly family reunion.  She was healthy.  She was active.  She was dancing and singing.  No sign of anything amiss.

January 29, I receive a message from my mom, telling me that my aunt was in the ICU because of a rare disease called Guillain-Barre Syndrome.  I went straight to google to see what I could find.

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/guillain-barre-syndrome/basics/definition/con-20025832

1 to 2 cases out of 100,000 per year.

The treatment was expensive.  Her immediate family was able to start her on the daily treatment.  But it was too late.  After a week in ICU, my aunt passed away.

My prayers go out to her family.  To my dad, who was really close to her.  I, unfortunately, was not.  It was only through our yearly family reunion that I got to talk to her, to hear her stories and to tell her briefly how I have been.

Life is unpredictable.  No one ever knows when it’s their time.  Someone can live their life forever scared of all the possible horror that they might experience, or live like there’s no tomorrow, but in the end it’s still the same story.

Life is unpredictable.  And yet it is beautiful.  It defines you.  The life you have is based on how you have acted on the unpredictability of it.  On what you have done.

But this life is not all that there is.  There is something beyond life that is more beautiful.  More unpredictable, because we do not know.  We may know enough to want it.  But we’ll never know until we get there.  That is the beauty of the afterlife.  The mystery.

Sometimes I wonder about people who don’t believe in the afterlife.  Do they think that this is all there is?  What becomes the meaning of life for them?  Thinking that after this life, it’s the end.  Like a game over with no replays.  Do they enjoy their life more, knowing that everything ends and then nothing.

That is very sad.  I don’t think I could enjoy my life thinking that there is nothing beyond the years that I have on this earth.  I would keep asking myself everyday, what is the purpose of all this…

Much worse, in my opinion, is believing in everything or believing in something vague.

So, dear reader, if you have reached this last part of the post, I’m here to tell you what my purpose is in life.  It’s to tell you about Christ Jesus, who died for our sins.  All you have to do is accept Him as your personal Savior.  It’s that easy.  Yet it’s the hardest thing to do, because it involves putting your trust in Him and it means that you will change your ways because you now have accepted Him into your heart.

Life is unpredictable.  Don’t let it be too late.

AvA Martini

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How Great Thou Art

Dear Diary,

Most churches today prefer to use upbeat modern Christian songs in their praise and worship sections, but I grew up singing hymns in church and I appreciate them more because they are not drowned by the beat of the drums.

My favorite of all Hymns is “How Great Thou Art”. This is my grandmother’s favorite too and my cousin and I sang it on her funeral… Ok, I think I just choked on the lyrics during the whole time while crying my eyes out…

The lyrics always moves me. It lets me acknowledge that God is truly awesome and great.

How Great Thou Art

O Lord my God! When I in awesome wonder
Consider all the works thy hand hath made,
I see the stars, I hear the mighty thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed;

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

When through the woods and forest glades I wander
and hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees;
when I look down from lofty mountain grandeur,
and hear the brook, and feel he gentle breeze;

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

And when I think that God his son not sparing,
Sent him to die – I scarce can take it in,
That on the cross my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin:

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

When Christ shall come with shout of acclamation
And take me home- what joy shall fill my heart!
Then I shall bow in humble adoration
And there proclaim, my God, how great thou art!

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

Carrie Underwood’s rendition of the song is my 2nd favorite version, my grandmother’s version is my first favorite but we never got to take a video before she died…

Carrie Underwood – How Great Thou Art

Ephesians 2:4-5
New King James Version (NKJV)
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

Have a blessed week!
AvA_Martini

Belated Happy Easter

1 Peter 1:3-9

New International Version (NIV)

Praise to God for a Living Hope

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

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Location: Caramoan, Camarines Sur
This is the reason for my 3-day absence… Took a trip with my husband, cousins, sister and friends during the Holy Week.

THE TWO NATURES
By George Feldmann
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The very moment one exercises saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour, a new nature is imparted by the Holy Spirit to the believer.  This is described as regeneration in Titus 3:5 and 6.  Immediately a hitherto unknown conflict also begins within.  The two natures each strive to go in opposite directions, and to have the upper hand in the life of the believer.

Both natures cannot reign at the same time, so one will have to be rendered inoperative, or put out of commission.  It is here that the will of the believer comes into play and determines which of the two natures shall rule.  A good chapter for study in this subject is Romans 6.  Our salvation puts us in union with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection, and we are identified with Him.  This is what is meant by the word baptism in Romans 6:3.  His victory can be our victory in a practical sense in our daily lives.  In fact this is the will of God for all believers.

This identification with Christ gives the believer both the power and the authority to exercise the will over the old nature. This is a wonderful privilege because the believer can demonstrate in his own life the power and glory of the Lord’s resurrection for all the world to see.

Even though the believer determines which nature shall rule in his life, it is also very important for him to remember that the old man (nature) is not dead or eradicated when rendered inoperative: it is ready to spring to life the very moment the new nature is dethroned by the believer.  The old nature will not be eradicated until resurrection.

In Eph. 4:22-24 we are told to put off… the old man. The negative comes first. The positive, put on the new man. As nature abhors a vacuum. so it is folly to stop at the negative position and try to make the Christian life a series of don’ts. We put on and continually grow in the Lord, going on to perfection (maturity).

PS.
1. Christian life does not stop in Salvation (In Christ), we study to grow unto adoption (maturity), then service (to reign with Him).
2. The Lord gave us the NN, He did not repair the OSN. We need to continue studying the Word of God to feed our New Nature (NN) and to disable the Old Sin Nature (OSN). OSN will only be totally gone in the resurrection.
Eph 4:23-24 Col 3:10
3.When we became a Christian we became a New Creature (New Creation- born again) 1Cor 2:14 “But the natural man (the flesh) receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God…”
Gal 6:15- “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. (No ritual)
2Cor 5:17-21 – “Therefore If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away, behold all things are become new”
John 14:17. “…for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.”

Dear Diary,

I love teddy bears…  We used to sing this song when we were kids and we were taught how to draw teddy bears.  It goes a little something like this… “small circle, small circle, big circle…”  I can’t remember the rest of the lyrics… hehe

Anyway, just wanted to share a gift my hubby bought me months before he became my hubby.

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Ephesians 5:20 – 33

20Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

      22Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

      25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

       33Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

Submitted for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Circles and Curves

Love lots,

KJSO

UPDATE:  I couldn’t sleep thinking about the lyrics of the song… So I googled it… hahaha

small circle, small circle big circle (eyes n face)
small circle, small circle big circle (ears n nose/snout)
this is the boat we’re going to ride on (a smiling mouth)
here’s mama, here’s papa (small circles inside ear) waving goodbye
six times six (one six and an opposite facing six to make the arms) is thirty six (fingers on the hand)
six times six (one six and an opposite facing one) makes magic (the ^ that connects these sixes)

Dear Diary,

Most Filipino weddings always have something for the guests to take home.  Wedding favors are a way to thank the guests for coming and to let them have something to remember your wedding by.

Traditional favors usually come as a form of a figurine or something that can be displayed on the shelf.  You can go for edible ones, specially chocolates, I love chocolates.  I’ve seen some unique wedding favors from some weddings I’ve attended, like a CD with the couple’s favorite songs, travel-sized bottles with perfumes, personalized golf balls, tiny pails with soil and seed.

For my guests, I was going to go for something edible, so I can buy 100 pcs or more and not spend so much.  The gifts for the principal sponsors was what I wanted to spend money on.  For their gifts I wanted to get the green peas salt and shaker which I saw a friend purchase once for a wedding she was coordinating.  I thought they were really cute and they match the motif color.

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Photo Credit

However, I could not find any company here in the Philippines that sold them locally.  I didn’t want to order them from another country because I was just going to get 25 pcs and that was not worth the tax that customs would slap on the order.  So I found another alternative, which are Love Birds Salt and Pepper shakers.  We have an inside joke with the family about love birds that involves hubby’s not so impressive small talk skills, so I was not too depressed about not getting the peas in a pod.  We ordered our salt and pepper shakers from Fab Weddings.

Photo Credit


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I just changed the ribbons to make it match the motif.

For the female entourage, I gave out green pocket journals by Elim-Art, with a personalized sticker in the inside cover.  For the male entourage, I gave out pens engraved with their first names.  For my ring and Bible bearer, I gave them white toy cars and my little flower girl gets a small white stuff toy puppy that shakes when you pull the tail.

The wedding was on May, which is the hottest month in the Philippines.  The ceremony was  to be held outside, but we had a tent for when it rained.  However, we couldn’t put any industrial fans in the venue because they didn’t have any.  So I decided to buy native Filipino fans that matched my motif.  I think I visited every Kultura branch they had here in metro manila to get at least 80 green fans.

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I was inviting 110 people to the wedding so I had to make sure there were enough souvenirs to go around.  I was looking in the net for chocolates with personalized wrappers.  I was also thinking about having customized green and black m&ms.  While browsing, I stumbled on music boxes.  I don’t know why I didn’t think of that in the first place.  I love music boxes! I have a few and I just love the sound that it makes and I could stare at the thing for hours just watching the tiny dots hit the keys.

Photo Credit

We got a hand-crank music box that plays La Vie En Rose (which is a famous classic French love song).  Hand-crank is different from the normal wind-up music box.  This one doesn’t play by itself, you have to keep turning the handle for it to keep playing.  We ordered our music boxes from I Do, I Do Wedding Favors, a company from Singapore that delivers around the world.

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I had to change the ribbon again.  I also asked hubby to design a sticker for me.  Printed the design on sticker paper.  I deliberately left the top part visible, because that’s the best part about music boxes.

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When we gave out the souvenirs during the wedding, people were cranking it and listening to the music it played.

The tiny writing at the bottom part of the sticker is:

Ephesians 5:19

New King James Version (NKJV)

19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,

xoxo,

KJSO

Note:  Since I couldn’t go to church today, because I woke up late due to my night shift, I decided to post a lesson here instead.

“Every Promise in the Book is Mine”

by Robert K. Brown, Jr. of Grace Publications

In the days of Peter, people struggled to understand the writings of Paul (2 Peter 3:15-16), and we are no different today. At that time there were many systems of interpreting the Bible with the Sadducees, the Pharisees, and others, and with many differing groups within the Pharisees. Today many more systems have been added, but which one is right? Or, if not right, best?

One popular thought in certain areas of American Christianity is that it makes no difference what a person believes as long as they attend church somewhere and they obey that church’s teaching. This certainly has the advantage of reducing both inter-church competition and friction between believers. However, it serves only to avoid real issues concerning biblical interpretation since it assumes that every church’s doctrine is within tolerance of God’s truth, even though some churches hold completely opposite and incompatible views. Thus although this position may have sociological advantages, it is not designed for searching out biblical truths.

Another common view is expressed in a popular song, often taught to children, but which forms some adult attitudes. “Every promise in the Book is mine, every chapter, every verse, every line.” 

Now the Bible is filled with promises. Some were made to Noah, others to Abraham; some to Moses, others to David; some to Peter, others to Paul. Was Noah promised the same as Abraham? Was Moses promised that his sons would rule Israel as was David? Was Paul promised that he would sit on one of the twelve thrones judging the tribes of Israel as was Peter?

If a church teaches that “every promise in the book is mine”, does it mean that every promise in the book becomes mine? The answer is simple of course. Every promise in the Book is not mine! But why not?

We all hold erroneous views and we have to ask by what standard is truth judged? Is it the Bible or some church? If a church teaches that Christians today are the Spiritual Israel, does that mean believers today are a spiritual Israel? If one church teaches that Christians should observe a sabbath of rest from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday, while another says Sunday replaced the seventh day of sabbath, while a third states that Gentile Christians were never commanded to keep any sabbath, which is correct, if any?

Without a consistent method of interpretation there is a danger that Christians feel the right to go through Scripture selecting the promises they want, like choosing food from a menu in a restaurant, selecting favorites and leaving ones not liked. In other words, Christians go through selecting some promises and leaving others, selecting promises of blessing, but rejecting promises of judgement!

But the Bible was not given to be used like a menu. God inspired many different men to write over many hundreds of years. These authors wrote to particular people, addressing specific problems. Thus the basic of any consistent method of interpretation should be paying attention not only to what was said, but also to whom or of whom it is said. Also the time factor needs to be considered; either when it was said or to when it relates. Lastly, place may also be important; to where does it pertain. These give us building blocks for constructing a consistent understanding of Scripture. Ignoring them can lead to serious error, as the following old story illustrates.

A person was in a desperate situation from which he could see no escape. He turned to the Bible which he closed, stood on end, and let fall open. With eyes closed he placed a finger on the page and looked at the verse indicated. It read, “Judas went out and hanged himself”. Not liking this he repeated the process. The second verse was “Go thou and do likewise”. In desperation he tried a third time. The result? “Then said Jesus unto him, That thou goest, do quickly.”

Obviously all three verses were taken out of context and no truth can be derived from such a method. But equally no truth can be obtained by selecting promises from the Bible as one chooses food from a menu! Every promise in the book belongs to someone, but they cannot all belong to me, or to you. In order to help us appreciate which ones are ours we need to pay attention not only to what a promise says, but to whom it was made, to when it relates, and to where it pertains.

Taken from: http://rightdivision.com/every-promise-book-mine

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