Give All

Give All: Working Part One

Relay Baton

After yesterday’s blog post about giving all in my part-time role as a blogger, today I experienced a great day. Not only my physical being was energetic, my mind was also very enthusiastic. The worries had dissipated. The uncertainty had gone. And what came was a peace of mind and strong SUPPORT.

Today was one of the happiest days of my life. And today’s happiness and joyful mind were driven by a single factor, that I am having a responsibility in God’s work. It is not about how much money I can make. It is not about how long I can live. And it is not about how much worldly status and power that I can have. It is all about working for God, to be one of His tools to make the world a better place.

Yesterday I talked about how a fictitious father who prepared everything for His son in order that he can raise his son up so that the kid can be strong enough to do good and glorify God on earth. Imagine that the father has a sizable business, will the son be responsible enough to continue the development of the business and make it thriving? Or is he to take up the business to make more money? The difference is, the former is a responsibility, while the latter is to fulfil the egoistic desire.

I do not have a father who has a business for me to pick up, but I have the Father, God himself, who gives me the gift to continue writing. And why He has chosen me for this vocation? Why does He give mercy to me to let me join and work in His vineyard?

The reason is He loves me. And He loves you too. The work you do, the family that you have and any other voluntary activities that you do are all works for and with Him. Most of the time we have a choice to do or not to do something. But can we admit to ourself that, well, I have grown old enough to pick up the baton from those who ran so painstakingly in a 4×400 relay race before me? And what about if I might be the fourth and the last runner, therefore having a big responsibility to perform, will you be serious enough to be thinking, “Well, this time I have to deliver.”

Having responsibilities means having the expectation, during the journey, to work to a particular goal or target in future. The road is narrow for us, but the fact that God is with us gives us the assurance that we can know His love at all times. And God leads the way, and we grow hand in hand with our responsibilities. Every time we reach a milestone, we know that God will share His happiness with us, and then He will entrust further responsibilities to us. My example is the SUPPORT he has given me. In certain times, like today, He gave me the feeling and the joyfulness that is worth my every action to repay Him.

This is the journey of love. This is the journey of gratitude. And this is the journey of personal and collective achievements for the world. Will you be proud enough to tell everyone that you will fulfil your job for and with God, and do your responsibility to make the world a better place? Do you know that God will be with you, in times of happiness and despair? Are you prepared to perform if you may be potentially, but not consciously aware, one of the last runners in this once-in-a-lifetime relay race? Will you, in some days, give all to Him because He has given you the joyfulness during the journey, the priceless gift that only God’s love can give?

Give All: Working 18.7.2018

Red heart in hands of the little girl. Symbol of love and family.Valentines day card. Mother's day. Backgrounds for social posters. Selective focus

Yesterday I talked about God leading me to study the Scriptures that are related to working for and with Him. After reading Matthew 25:14-30, my attention then turned to Matthew 20:1-16, the Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard.

This parable tells us the story of several workers working for a landowner in his vineyard. The landowner had employed many workers but at different periods. Given that some workers were employed for longer working hours, they then expected to receive more than those who only worked for a few hours. But the landowner reminded them that their compensation would be the same, regardless of the hours they had worked. The point is if you are one of the workers, you may ask, why should I do more if I am paid the same?

This parable tells us that God loves every one of us. He gives us the opportunities to work for and with Him, at various point of our life. Let me then share with you my story. I started writing my blog on 13.10.2017. On that day I had first experienced the SUPPORT from God, I believe, and so I wrote them in my blog. And that’s how this blog came to life. And this was probably the job that God had given me to do when I was 41 years old. Before that, I had thought of working for Him, but I could not find what things to do for Him, without his guidance. So it’s like I was wandering in a desert, not being able to find something meaningful to work for God. After guiding me to write this blog, and reading this scripture, it is like a father who tells his son, “Junior, you have grown enough, you have experienced the difficult period, it is time for you to write and do something, to fulfil your responsibilities for our family and people that are close to us. Don’t focus on the rewards you can get, but on how much you can give.”

Not only does this father reminds his son of his abilities and responsibilities, he even prepares everything, to make sure his son can shine in his arena. He teaches him the life lessons, oversees his developments, reminds his son when he has done something wrong and gives him support that enables him to do his work with high morale and enthusiasm. He gives him a computer notebook, and constantly gives him the idea to write, and shares his happiness with him once he has done something good and whenever he reaches a milestone. And this is probably the best of parenting, to enable your son and daughters to shine on their own, to do good and glorify God on earth. And His plan is amazing.

Consider this, I had an English prize in 1993 when I was 17 years old. Then I went on my way to work as an Accounts Clerk, in the corporate world. And then fast forward to the year 2017, when I was 41 years old. When I had a house, and my son going to primary school, at this time God gave me the awakening, to start my blog. He gives me the idea, and inspiration to write for and with Him. And He knows that I have the abilities and enjoys doing such a vocation. Don’t you think this is the best plan for me? I believe. What about you, fellow bloggers? Do you know that God has a plan for you? Do you know that, by writing this blog, God has given you something worthwhile to do, for and with Him? Do you know how much He loves you, by giving you the idea and inspiration to continue writing, which may be the best personal and collective achievements?

Are you willing to give all, by focusing your full attention in your arena, and to Him, knowing that He loves you so much?

The Journey: Give All Decision Part Two

Religious representation with cross on top of a hill

Are you ready to sacrifice everything just for strictly following Jesus’s teachings? Are you prepared to sacrifice yourself in order that the words of God and Jesus can be followed? I had one chance today, and I took the opportunity to clearly show to God that I love Him, and I am following Him, his words and his teachings, to the extent of sacrificing myself. I cried, and it was worth it.

The first thing that most people think of, when we are talking about sacrifice, is, “For What?“. One example that I can think of is, when you forgo your comfort zone, and give your seat to an old man in a train, “what is it for?” Obviously, you do it for the old man, giving your seat to him as he needs a seat inside the train. But more importantly, you are doing this because you follow Jesus’s teaching, by doing good for others, sacrificing your comfort zone in the process. Therefore if you have a paradigm shift and think in this way, sacrificing means giving yourself up in certain forms in order to achieve a higher purpose, for and with God, to help others as you would help your closest family members. Giving up a seat to sacrifice your comfort zone is easy, but are you prepared to sacrifice everything in order to follow Jesus’s teachings, in a strict way?

This morning I arrived at the office at 9:30am and soon we had a meeting. The meeting was about the usage of the new Accounting system and a representative was sent from the software house to our office to explain and answer our questions. All along, I was thinking of one thing, the thought of doing things right. I was talking to myself, “I will do the right thing, that God wills me to do, to the extent that I might need to sacrifice myself in the process.” Of course, I will not do anything that is harmful to others, like bombing a place, but I am willing to sacrifice myself, to the extent that I will do and practice the integrity, and righteousness that was taught by Jesus in the Bible. People may be thinking, life is short, let us enjoy our time, why indulge in helping others? My interpretation is: Life is short, let us do good to others, which makes our life meaningful. See Mark 9:35

Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

In this way, Jesus’s teaching was if we want to be first in our life, we need to have the heart of serving others, or as He said, the servant of all. We have to prepare to put aside our most immediate interests, to prepare to sacrifice our comfort zone, and truly, genuinely give ourselves away, to serve others. This is meaningful. And this is the right attitude in life. Forget about what you gain from others, but what you give to others.

And you know what, after I kept telling and reminding myself to do good and sacrifice myself (Giving all for God), I have already shown to Him that how much I love Him, as I am doing all these things to glorify Him. And having faithfully told myself that whatever happens, I will still keep His teachings and goodness in my mind and my actions, I cannot stop myself crying. I was sentimental not only because I had shown my utmost love to Him, but also because I had promised and had done my part and responsibilities as a loyal servant. I know I have done the right thing, make the right decision, and I will not regret any single moment, anymore. The fact that I can sacrifice myself for God makes our relationship closer, and makes myself bolder, and with strength. My heart and determination become stronger and stronger, and better prepared myself to face the possible harship or suffering if I am to do God’s will on earth. And this is my main purpose in life. What’s yours?

The Journey: Give All Decision Part One

Donate Word Wall

We all have personal needs and responsibilities. By talking about needs it means that we have to have a job, or ways to find money and income. We have to find a shelter in the form of housing to stay, and need to have adequate education to our siblings and considerations for our retired parents as well. This is probably a normal duty to each one of us, we just have to do it to sustain our lives. The worldly thinking is that not only we need to sustain our lives, we desire to earn and make more money, to satisfy our ego and our fleshly desire. We need to find ways to gain more power and status, that is the norm. And this is wrong, and not a choice we can make. Please read Matthew 6:24

“You cannot serve both God and money”

Again, we have to take a stand: Either God or money. In this way, our main duty to God is to make a living to provide our own necessary needs and then, using our gifts, which are from God, to better use them to fulfill our responsibilities to our society, our church and anyone that we can be of help. Many people may think that, well, I have done my part, I have a decent job, and have enough provisions for my immediate families, go to church regularly, and donate to some charities, what more should I do? Please understand the concept of “gifts”: If you have them, you are required to use them to do good. Again, this is not a choice. I will talk about the parable of the bags of gold in Matthew 25:14-30 tomorrow to further illustrate this point. For the time being, just note the needs that everyone has to earn enough money and the responsibilities that one has to perform.

I was talking to one of my aunties today regarding my “Give all decision” made three days ago, and we had a long talk on this one. Please refer to my previous blog post on this decision: The Journey: Give All Decision 10.5.2018, If I give up all of my belongings, including all my wealth away, how am I supposed to fulfill my daily needs, and further about responsibilities for anyone? You can, by believing this: Matthew 6:33

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well

You don’t need to worry or be afraid, even if you are temporary jobless or bankrupt, just have faith that when you seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, what you will eat, drink and wear will be given to you. So cheer up, and to those who worry or have doubts of their uncertain future, please don’t worry, God will give you provisions, you just have to have faith and to do what the Bible teaches. And how the Bible teaches us about daily provisions? By praying to God daily. Please see Matthew 6:11-13 on how we should pray, and note that we should ask Him to give us our daily bread:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.

I had made a decision of quitting a job with a bright prospect and to give up all my current wealth away, to show God how I love him that much. This is a pure decision, and a 10 seconds one which will make my whole life blessed and happy. Most people will say, well, I am forgoing all my wealth that I had accumulated all my life, will I be happy? My answer is there is a big difference between loving worldly wealth and loving God. Once you are in a loving relationship with God, nothing, and I mean nothing will it matter to you anymore. I am saying this based on my personal experience and I think there are many in this world will claim that the “Love of God” is more important than your wealth. I am asking you to give it a try, try to establish a loving relationship with God, and you will feel the total difference. The important step is to step up on the path that God has planned for you.

Having said this, after I made this decision, I have never a doubt that I can still survive in the future, as long as I seek His kingdom and righteousness and pray regularly, I have complete faith that all will be given to me. I am not worried, because I believe. Once I believe, I will start reading the Bible, follow Jesus’s teaching and humbly walk with God. Having made the sacrifice, I firmly believe I will have a bright prospect and a good future in my road ahead. My needs will be catered, from God, and my gift, which is to write this blog, will be further polished and improved, in the coming days, to faithfully work with God on earth, for spreading the Good news, as my main responsibility. Are you impressed? Read my previous blog post on The Journey: Give All Decision 10.5.2018 and think for yourself. Don’t first think of the returns and costs, and think “purely”, is your choice based on the love of God? Is your relationship with Him bigger than any other considerations?

The Journey: Give All Decision 10.5.2018

Mug  on wooden table valentine's day holiday background.

Can you do anything, sacrificing everything, just for Love? Do you want to have a pure relationship with God? Read on Mark 12:41-44

Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”

From this story, we saw that the widow put in two coins, which was her everything, into the temple treasury. Jesus said that she did this “out of poverty”, or a hope that such an act would give her life above the poverty line. Regardless of other motives of her, she had already shown us what is true love. The love that is unconditional, not thinking of personal interests, and a sacrificial love that can only be made probably once in a lifetime. By saying this is once in a lifetime, I mean when you have accumulated a certain amount of money and wealth, are you willing to give them all away, as a demonstration of your love to God? I mean, are you prepared to risk your comfort zone, your worldly status, and power, and give everything of yours away for God, just to show Him how you love Him, and how you do it in one go?

Today was a normal working day, in which I was relatively busy in the morning. I ate some noodles for lunch and then slept for a while in office. Then in the afternoon while I was working, I started to think of one of my friends, an elder of a Christian Church who had been studying Bible with me once a week. He had an eventful life: He once was an entrepreneur and had studied a Theology degree. He just told me last week that He had a new job, and only 2 days ago I knew that his new job was a security guard working from 8am to 8pm. I then had this thought, am I willing to forego my comfort zone, my current job as an Accountant Assistant, to follow Jesus to do God’s will? Please read Matthew 8:18-20

When Jesus saw the crowd around him, he gave orders to cross to the other side of the lake. Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”

By following Jesus, we can expect to be homeless, even Jesus as the Son of Man had no place to lay his head. And when Jesus chose His 12 apostles, He sent them out and told them to take with them only the basic things, and not to be tempted by making money from performing miracles or healing. And He again warned them that they may need to walk the cross, following the example of Jesus, and had to suffer and be persecuted for God’s sake. So it is a difficult life if we follow Jesus and went through the narrow road. I could not be an apostle and work for God spreading the Bible, but how can I love God? And in what way? Please read Matthew 22:37

“Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”

Going back to my afternoon today, after having read the above Scriptures, I then had a thought hanging on my mind, “Now is the time to give everything to God, now is the perfect time for me to forgo my job and probably lose everything I may have, just to show God that I love Him so much.” I wasn’t thinking about what rewards I will have in the Kingdom of God, I wasn’t thinking about whether I will have provisions or savings  for my future life, I wasn’t thinking about whether I will have to continue my life as a poor man, the only thing I am thinking is: “Now is the right time, and once in a lifetime opportunity to show God that I can sacrifice everything, for LOVE“. This particular instinct of mine had given me the perfect timing, and I knew that if I didn’t do it today, I may have lost such opportunity and may never come up again. I then made the DECISION, which will give myself a lifetime of pride and happiness, after only one minute’s thought. And for the next 30 minutes, I was thinking the same thing and I told myself, that’s it, I am not going to change my mind again. I am going to do it. I am willing to do it if it means giving everything away.

The proudest thing of my life is this, today. I did not think for myself, I wasn’t thinking about worldly possessions and wealth, all I am thinking is the “Love”, the Pure love that I have with God, without considering anything, or everything that might affect myself. And I made a “Pure” decision, and one in which I will never regret, and act as an anniversary celebratory moment, privately between me and God, on this day: 10.5.2018. My “Time” is today. When’s yours?