Archive of ‘Spirituality’ category

Are you a Fan or Follower?

Manchester United v Manchester City - Premier League

 Photo from http://www.sportskeeda.com

Are you a fan or follower of Jesus?

I just finished a book entitled “Not a Fan” by Kyle Idleman. In the first chapter, the opening question was, “Are you a follower of Jesus?” You may have been asked this question before. And most of the time, you say “yes” without even thinking about it.

Of course I’m a follower! I go to church regularly, attend bible study, listen to Christian music, serve in a ministry…

But really, are you a follower? Or are you just a fan?

Fan – an enthusiastic admirer.

A fan is someone who sits on the sidelines, cheering his favorite basketball team on. He knows all the players, the score, the stats. But he is not in the game sweating it out with the rest of the team. He is sitting comfortably on the sidelines. He knows of the players – where they’re from, their favorite food, how many hours they train… But he doesn’t know them.

Jesus has a lot of fans these days. People who sit in the sidelines at church cheering him on. People who admire Jesus but know nothing of the pain of following him. They know all about Jesus but they don’t truly know him.

Many of us won’t mind Jesus making little changes in our lives. But Jesus isn’t interested in making a few touch ups – he wants a complete renovation. We think tune-up, but Jesus wants an overhaul. When we choose to follow him, Jesus will turn our lives upside down. He isn’t interested in having fans, he wants followers.

Jesus wants us to define our relationship with him. Is it casual or committed? Fan or follower?

Matthew, a tax collector, was busy collecting taxes behind his booth. Now to be a Jew, collecting tax for the Roman empire, was the height of all sins. He wasn’t just a sinner, he sinned for a living! Even his own family wouldn’t touch him. No doubt Matthew was already so “deeply in sin” he wasn’t even trying to hide it anymore. So when Jesus stops by his booth to speak to him, no one would have guessed what he would say.

Jesus said, “Follow me.”

Now in their culture, a rabbi (teacher of God’s word) didn’t go on extending invitations. If you wanted to be a student or disciple of a particular Rabbi, you had to apply. Rabbi’s would screen their applicants and turn away those who didn’t make the cut. But Jesus didn’t choose his followers based on their family background or familiarity with the old testament. He extends his invitation to anyone who would like to follow him. It’s your call. It’s your choice.

Jesus says, “Follow me.”

Mathew 9:9 says:

…And Matthew got up and followed him.

For so long I realized that I’ve only been a fan. I say I love God but I wasn’t ready to fully commit to him. It’s similar to telling someone, “Yes, I love you but I still want to date other people too.” I still kept those parts of my life I knew wasn’t pleasing to him. I felt that following Jesus would mean I couldn’t have fun anymore. But I couldn’t have been more wrong. Jesus wants us to follow him so we can fully experience the joy of being with him. It’s only when we surrender our lives to him that we can experience true joy and real freedom. We don’t have to be sinless to start following Jesus. We can start doing it today.

What about you? Don’t cheat yourself out of the joy of knowing Christ. Commit to following him today.

Go live a Truly Wealthy life.

-Alex

Let Go and Let God

 

DIGITAL CAMERA

Photo from twosixmag.com.au

There is true freedom in surrender.

Too often in life we are tempted to want to take control of everything, especially for those who are “doers” like I am. I am the type of person who can’t sit still for an extended period of time (unless I’m reading a book). I always want to move around and do something.

One thing God has taught me this past year is to be “still and know that He is God.” There are times when the best thing to do is nothing. For some, doing nothing may be easy. But for me, that’s a challenge. Waiting and doing nothing does not come easy to me because when a situation arises, I immediately want to do something about it.

It was only last year when I realized that waiting is not only about being patient, it’s about being faithful. God will reveal to you his perfect plans in His own time – and not before that.

 We are here not to be successful but to be faithful. And if success comes with your faith, then praise God. – Mother Theresa

I’d just finished reading a book entitled Unstoppable – The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by best-selling author and speaker, Nick Vujicic. Nick was born without limbs. And yet that did not stop him by living life to the fullest and sharing God’s amazing love. I look at Nick and marvel at God’s incredible grace, at how He has used this man to inspire millions of people around the world to embrace life and accept Jesus. There are many people who have a complete set of limbs yet they wallow in self-pity and focus only on themselves. I look at Nick and am amazed at how much he has done for others. However, he wasn’t always this way. There was a time in his life when he tried to commit suicide because he didn’t want to burden his parents anymore. It was only when Nick finally let go of his doubts and insecurities that he started being able to inspire people and make a difference. God used an imperfect man (a man without limbs!) to fulfill His perfect plan.

nick-vujicic-surfing-036

Photo from mayashope.org

 

Sometimes we focus too much on ourselves that we fail to see God’s amazing plan for us. Had Nick focused on his “disability” he wouldn’t be the amazing author and evangelist he is today.

When I started Truly Wealthy Realty with my partners three years ago, I was focused solely on becoming a successful real estate broker. But when I started attending bible study and church service at CCF, I realized that there are things that are more rewarding than financial success. Of course, I don’t discount that. I still fully intend to be financially successful, but that desire has now come second to serving God. He will always be first with me. The moment I decided to let go and let God, tons of blessings seemed to pour into my life. Truly Wealthy got an exclusive contract with a developer to market a project in Iligan, I became Top Broker of the year for 2014 and this year, I’m finally starting my own bible study group together with a good friend from church.

I’ve never been more inspired and in love with God as I am today.

God + 0 = more than enough

God is more than enough for me and all I will ever need. Everything else is just a bonus.

What about you?

Do you feel like you are always striving to achieve an ever-elusive goal? Do you feel like you’ve been working hard but nothing is coming out of it?

Action is important. But there comes a time, when we have done all we can,that we sit back and let God move. The ability to let go and let God, allows our faith to grow. We need to fully trust in His plans for us for they will always be good, pleasing and PERFECT.

Let go and let God.

Go live a Truly Wealthy life.

-Alex

1 2 3