Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Electric Relaxation

Life is so hectic.
I've been moved in now.
I don't know why I'm struggling so much with something that's seemingly nothing.
I don't know why I have such a hard time with thoughts that run through my head, and nothing that is actually happening physically.

God, will you break me and strengthen me through these ordeals.
Will you be my refuge?
My Rock and my Redeemer?

I need You.

- Dan

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Can I kick it?

I know I'm doing something wrong if I become too comfortable in this life.

We're made apart from this world. Meaning we'll never find true rest and peace in our lifetime, which really scares me. Knowing that society tells you to pursue happiness via financial success, families, and inner peace and acceptance; we know better.

Don't you wish you could be comfortable? Just sit back and kick it. Let life pass you by, nothing tugging at your heart to take action and do something about the brokenness of this world.

But alas, God calls each of His chosen to go forth, spread His word, create disciples, reach out to the lost, and fight for truth.

- Dan

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

This is the future sound.

In my summer agenda, here's what's left:

- Wicked Musical _Tuesday, September 09
- USC visit _Wednesday, September 10
- UCSD KCM Servant Team Retreat _Thursday-Saturday, September 11-13
- Traffic School _Monday, September 15
- Early Move-In _Friday, September 19

I only got a week and a half left before I move back in to San Diego for my 2nd year! I must say, I'm pretty psyched to go back and see all my friends and hang out till the wee hours of dawn. I hate to admit this, but I miss going to class and learning and doing something productive. I miss NOT being productive on purpose. Ah! Sophomore year brings new challenges and new struggles, but also more good times. So bring it on!

I was so blessed last night at the bonfire at Dockweiler. We were singing praise and praying for various topics. We were being somewhat loud so that the neighboring pits could hear what we were saying/praying/singing. I thought we were being pretty annoying, but it was quite the opposite. A man named David and his friend/brother(?) Alex and his daughter came over and they listened to us sing 4 songs and pray. He told us that he was really touched by what we were doing and saying. It got to his heart somehow. David told us that he was not a believer until that moment he witnessed us proclaiming our praises to God. 

This was simply an amazing moment when I saw God moving physically in our world. What I thought was us just singing praise and praying around a fire was actually God using us powerfully to reach out to two lost souls in the fire-pit next to us. God worked in their hearts so that they would listen carefully to the words we said. Something stirred in their hearts.

Did you feel the mountains tremble?

Did you feel the people tremble?

And we can see that God you're moving, a mighty river through the nations.

It reminds me of John 13:35 when Jesus tells his disciples that the world will know that we follow our Lord because of our love for each other.
 Apparently what David witnessed was something he had not seen something before, fellow brothers and sisters of Christ lifting up praises and prayers in one voice because of our love for God and each other.

- Dan

Sunday, September 7, 2008

And what shall remain?

"And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." ~ 1st Corinthians 13:13 (NIV)

I love 1st Corinthians 13. It's most well known for being the "Love" chapter, quoted generously by lovers of love, printed on mugs and plates to become inspirational keepsakes, and made famous by "A Walk to Remember". The entire chapter is so clear about the definition of love, everything it embodies, and everything it is not. It's one of those passages in the Bible that you just can't help but smile when reading, because you know that the love described by the words inscribed by Paul to the Corinthians is one that is given to us by a Perfect Father. 

We are so fortunate that God doesn't love us the way we love. We love so conditionally. Even our "unconditional" love can be flawed, especially when we commit sins against those whom we love most. 

I've never quite fully studied verse 13 closely. I always took it for face value and never really dug deep and discovered the real meaning behind it. I always assumed it just meant that love was just that awesome. But why is love that awesome? Why is it so emphasized? Why is God the entire embodiment of Love and not merely Hope and Faith?

One of my brothers who went to India with  me, Josh, gave me and our team this insight.

We may need FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE throughout our lives. Faith in our God to trust that our lives are completely in His hands. Hope for salvation and to one day meet with God in our heavenly dwelling and leave behind our sinful world. Love from God to receive His grace and mercy, to always be picked up when we fall, and to emulate that love to others so that they may see God's love through us. 

Once we pass away and our souls are finally at Home:

FAITH is no longer necessary. There is no need to have faith in a God that we will be able to see and interact with. We know He is there without an inkling of a doubt.

HOPE is no longer necessary because we have already achieved the end goal of the hope we had. Once we are Home, there can be no greater hope since there is nothing greater.

However, LOVE will always remain and be greater than FAITH and HOPE because LOVE will always embody our relationship with God, whether it is on earth or in Heaven above. 

Love is so powerful. It makes me shudder.

- Dan