Tag Archives: God

Day 04: Views on Religion

Late post! I’ve had my hands full during the weekends. 🙂

Religion. One of the most disputed topics since the beginning of time.

For all of you to know, I am a Protestant. I am involved in our church’s music ministry. I’ve accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior when I was 4 years old. I am thankful to God that He continues to be gracious and merciful in my life, despite my imperfections and disobedience. I believe that Jesus Christ is the only way, the truth, and the life (Jn. 14:6). Having said that, I do believe that the biggest dispute between religions is that of salvation, the person of Jesus Christ (or His non-existence), and resurrection.

I believe that we are all sinners, however hard we try to be good (Rom. 3:23). The payment for this sin is death, young or old, good or bad (something to the lines of “Why do good people have to die?”). However, God made a way for us to be spiritually alive again. God’s gift is eternal life through His only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ (Rom. 6:23). Jesus became Man so He can carry the sins of the world by being crucified. He was the one who bore the wrath of God the Father. I know some of you might view God as evil for letting His Son die. You see, that’s how holy He is. He cannot bear to see even one spot of sin. So if we told a white lie, got a few coins from your Mom’s purse, or got irritated with your friend, that’s already sin. Imagine mankind’s little sins all piled up…and placed on Jesus. When I think about this, I can’t help but feel grateful. He did not only die, but He also rose again from the dead. This is one of the most controversial topics that many scholars and scientists argue about. Until now, they cannot fully figure out the mystery behind such an occurrence. However, there are witnesses to this resurrection (1 Cor. 15:3-5). 500 witnesses plus the apostles? You cannot simply say that it’s mass hallucination. Jesus’ resurrection is the hope of those who believe in Him, because we truly serve a risen Savior who is actively sovereign in our lives. I also believe that Christ will come again to take up His sons and daughters, those who believe in Him.

I tried my best to summarize my belief and view of religion in two paragraphs. This song, entitled “This I Believe (The Creed)” (click the title to listen to the song) used the Apostles’ Creed as its lyrics. This is what I believe, and it is only by God’s enablement that I will be able to show and share the One who saved me.

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to hell.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty.
From there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic* church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

*that is, the true Christian church of all times and all places

 

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Breaking the 3-month Rule

“Bes, bawal pa mag-move on! Wala pang 3 months!”

l’m not sure how this unspoken rule came to be.

I just came from a very painful break-up (Woah. I’m actually writing about this!). I was afraid to show others that I am hurting. I tend to be a very introspective person, to the point that I just keep everything inside of me. Every time my (then) boyfriend would argue, I did my best to cover up my puffy eyes and red nose. My make-up skills were put to the test during these times, but the cover-up never worked with Mama. She always (ALWAYS!!!) knows when I cry! I dodged her questions such as. “Umiyak ka ba? Anong nangyari sa’yo? (Did you cry? What happened to you?).” Until there came a time that I can’t keep it anymore.

l felt so broken. I was hurting. Mama finally saw how I cry without any inhibition, and I felt that it hurts her as much as it hurts me. I also told Papa about my struggles and fears regarding my relationship. My close friends knew about it and they were very surprised (so much for me being a close friend…). It was a roller coaster of emotions. 

God taught me that there is a time for sorrow, that it is alright to cry. I remember how most of the Psalms are about lamenting and pouring out your heart to God. I was also challenged by mature Christians, including Mama and Papa, to be kind while being sorrowful. In this test of kindness, l actually had lapses. I messaged my ex some unkind words out of anger. It was hard to pray that I will be silent, as silent as the still waters of Psalm 23. Every time I see my ex, the temptation to lash out was so strong that I had to literally run away from him. At the end of the day, I run to the arms of my Father, crying like a child.

In the midst of the tempest, I found a quiet place. I learned how to rest in the arms of my heavenly Father. l acknowledged my mistakes and poured out my heart to Him. I thank Jesus because He exemplified this trait when He was being captured in the Garden of Gethsemane.  I realized that it is hard, but not impossible.

“To err is human, to forgive is divine.” -Alexander Pope

For me, moving on is also divine. There is no such thing as moving on without real forgiveness. Our pastor once gave a sermon about forgiveness. He said, “Forgiveness can be done even without reconciliation.” It was ground breaking for me. Finally, I let go of him. I let go of the hate, the regrets, and the what-ifs. In the midst of letting go, I still ask God that I will be kind to those who will comment unkindly to me. 3 days short before the 3-month mark. I was finally able to move forward.

Things I learned from this experience:

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” Ecclesiastes 3: 11 (NIV)

  1. God’s timeline is different from ours. It doesn’t matter if it takes you 3 months or a year to move on, as long as you are sensitive to the will of the Lord. His will is for us to be kind, loving, forgiving, patient, etc. (Fruit of the Spirit!). Do not rely on the timeline that this world gives you especially if you acknowledge that God is the Author of Time. On the other hand, don’t move on too quickly, moreso if it is out of anger and retaliation. 
  2. Give yourself time to grieve. It’s alright to cry and pour out your sorrows to God. Jesus knew what it feels like to lose someone you love (Lazarus). Breaking up is somehow similar to losing a person to death.
  3. It is God’s will for us to forgive! There is no shortcut for this one! We cannot pray about the contrary. Don’t forget, this is only possible by the grace of God.
  4. Share your sorrows and thoughts to reliable friends. By reliable friends, I mean those who can keep a secret, listen well, give you sound and godly advice, and rebuke you if needed. Looking back to my times of grief, I thank and praise God for the church. My church-mates and a few close friends really took the time to talk to and pray for me. Experiencing this encouraged me greatly to be a reliable friend as well.
  5. Always go back to praising God. It is alright to cry and to voice out frustrations to God, but it shouldn’t end there. We should praise and thank God that He remains faithful even though we are not. Again, it is not easy, but by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, we can.

Thank you for taking the time to read this entry. I hope it will encourage you or move you to encourage someone who is hurting. God bless!