Category Archives: Personal Life

In A World Where Emptiness Abounds

We live in a world where emptiness abounds. We know something is lacking within our heart of hearts. It’s beyond what’s intellectually understandable. The struggle to finding certainty is beyond being able to mentally accept things at face value. It’s way deeper.

Choices. Sometimes, I simply come to a point like this. I still have an intact knowledge of who I am and how things are supposed to be. But I don’t live it all the time.

That is probably why I get by. But it’s not as it healthy as it should be. Being too contented with one’s pace would not be healthy. Being too passive would undermine one’s consciousness about the real consequences. Passivity is probably my disease.

Come to think of it. All these years, I probably had only a very thin connection with God. Now that’s relative. The description is valid because I tend to just get by. Maybe because that is how I was brought up, passively.

I’m describing the connection as thin because it is. I still don’t feel fully well how it is to be best friends with Jesus. I probably know. And, I might be able to imagine how such a relationship is like. But that’s a bit different from making the possibility a daily reality.

All I’m saying is that my mind can run and run and run and it gets me mentally tired. In times like this, I can just blurt things out without having a total emotional attachment to my thoughts. I write my thoughts out just to relieve myself. And, probably, to extract more sense from what I’ve been going through.

I just thought about two words. I’ve mentioned the first one. Passivity and impulsiveness. How can the two go together?

Well, they can go together within a person like me. Most of the time I’m passive. If something really attracts me, I can get really impulsive. So I can’t say I’m already self-controlled. That’s yet too far from reality.

But I know, I know. I need to get it right. My mind has probably just become an expert at reasoning. And I had too many rationalizations that I have forgotten to listen, really listen to God.

It’s just that I had to start over, again. It sounds too ambitious knowing the failings of the past. But there’s no way I should give up. There’s more to my destiny than just giving up. I should be thankful for the experiences that I’ve had in life — those that made me somewhat resilient. But too much of it makes me passive, and it’s not the best way to live the Christian life.

So, I’m here today, lacking some sleep, ending up not writing an “optimized” post. Maybe it doesn’t really matter, at least not this time.

It’s just time to unwind and unmind. I probably had been too mindful about my thinking or my rationalizations. I sound like I’ve been masking my face all this time. It’s okay. I just need to talk to God right now. I know He’ll listen. I’ll get there. I only needed time.

And, most probably, reality.

God Had Not Forgotten

God has a record book. No, I’m not referring to the book of life, or to the book of remembrance, or to the book of sin. He has another record book. It contains your prayers, and He has not forgotten them.

God has not forgotten your prayer

Did you ever lose a part of your faith when you were asking God for something and it seemed no answer was coming?

I almost did.

Oh, well, I guess I actually did. I guess I lost faith when I tried working out the answer to some of my prayers, on my own.

But I learned today that God does not forget our prayers. I’ve been learning this by experience, but just today I read what the Inspired Writings had to say about Luke 1 and 2, leading me to meditate more on the beauty of this truth.

How God revealed this beautiful truth to me

I read Luke 1 and 2 last Sabbath and decided to postpone perusing the rest of my Bible reading assignments from the ESV 40-Day Bible Reading Plan to see what Aunt Ellen, under the influence of the Spirit, had to say.

I grabbed my physical copy of The Vision Study Bible, and turned to Luke 1 and read the footer commentaries. I decided to pause reading through the commentaries to simply digest what I just read.

Vision Study Bible

It was beautiful and was totally worth the time.

Throughout his married life, Zacharias had prayed for a son. He and his wife were now old, and as yet their prayer had remained unanswered; but he murmured not. God had not forgotten. He had His appointed time for answering this prayer, and when the case seemed hopeless, Zacharias received His answer. – Manuscripts, p.1898, par.3

The quote is totally rich and it deserved my attention.

Aside from revealing the fact that “God had not forgotten” Zacharias’ specific prayer, it revealed other beautiful details such as follows:

  • Zacharias kept praying;
  • While his prayer remained unanswered, Zacharias did not murmur (read about the curse of murmuring here);
  • God had an appointed time for answering Zacharias’ prayer; which means:
  • Zacharias’ prayer that he be given a son is according to God’s will; and,
  • God allowed Zacharias to think of it as a hopeless case, and surprised him with His answer when Zacharias finally surrendered his plea to God.

Sometimes, we had simply had to surrender

Sometimes, we may just have to surrender our plea to God, just like Zacharias.

Zacharias might have never known whether it was God’s will for him and Elizabeth to have a son. One thing admirable about him is that he kept praying.

Of course, having a son is not a sin.

So, Zacharias persevered in prayer because he knew that what he has been praying for was something innocent. His heart was free of guilt while asking God for a son. It wasn’t something selfish—I guess having a son would even be an aid for any parent to forget self while nourishing a child.

And God was really planning to answer that particular prayer.

The only other thing in consideration was God’s timeline. God “had His appointed time for answering this prayer.”

So, the next thing God was intending to teach Zacharias was full faith in His timing.

God has a dated record book

It fascinates me to think of the fact that God has a record book for our prayers. Here’s the quote from the inspired writings of Aunt Ellen:

But the answer had come. God had not forgotten the prayer of His servants. He had written it in His record book, to be answered in His own good time. Looking at outward appearances, Zacharias and Elisabeth had buried their hopes, but the Lord had not forgotten. He knew of the long years of disappointment, and when His own name could best be glorified, their son was born. – Manuscript 27, p.1898, par.9

Wow. God has a record book for our prayers! I could imagine how one of my prayers would be listed there, and beside it there would be a future date on which the prayer would be answered!

“When His own name could best be glorified”

Not only does God answer at a specific time; His timing is purposeful.

Come to think of it. God’s timeline is not an arbitrary one! This means that when He assigns a date to answer your innocent, according-to-God’s-will request, He has a lot of considerations to make.

One, He considers giving you the best. Two, He also considers giving you your request at a time when granting that request already becomes humanly impossible.

That way, you would begin to trust Him more for the God that He is—not for the good that you are, i.e., if you are any good.

Aside from these though, He considers giving you more than what you have originally asked for.

How tender, how kind, how full of love and compassion, is the great heart of infinite love. God gave Zacharias as a son no ordinary person, but one who should hold a high place in His work, and from whom the light from heaven should shine in clear, distinct rays. – Manuscript 27, p.1898, par.9

God has given Zacharias John the Baptist as a son!

Extraordinary, indeed!

Extraordinary answers await those who trust

John the Baptist surely became a great blessing to Zacharias and Elizabeth. He was no ordinary son. He was the man who was the forerunner of Jesus, the Messiah.

What a privilege!

He will answer my prayer

I won’t take more time before giving you the takeaway message. It’s here.

By impressing upon me to read the inspired commentaries on Luke 1 and 2, God has given me such a timely reminder:

He will answer my prayer. He does have a record book. My prayer’s there. He has a date for it. And He can give me more than what is humanly possible. He can give me more than what I’ve asked for!

Indeed, it is never a coincidence that Luke 1 contains one of my all-time favorite Bible verses:

“For with God nothing shall be impossible.” – Luke 1:37, KJV

Truly, nothing is impossible for me!

This means nothing is impossible for you, too.

So, let’s keep praying. God has never forgotten.