Confessions of a Campus Missionary: It’s A Wrong Mistake

April 10, 2012
A few years ago when I was still a very young campus missionary my dream of preaching at our youth service finally came. It actually came as an accident – (I could not remember the details though), all that I can remember was everyone is out and I have to do it. No matter what the circumstances maybe I was excited, I was all out for it not knowing the topic will be about “Lust”- wow, talk about first timer jitters magnified 100x. But then again this is a dream come true so I’ll bite the bullet and do the best that I can.
I remember really preparing hard for it-almost memorizing the whole thing. I inserted a lot of jokes and illustrations-you see the preachers in our church that time were really super funny and me- I was serious, so I really need to work hard J, or so I thought. The most awaited night came and there I was nervous beyond all what I imagine myself to be. But the moment I stood up I was more excited than scared. That night I preached the word boldly, gave it all I had, waited for the perfect timing for all my jokes and surprisingly enough they found me funny J. I was able to connect with the crowd and they responded beyond what I expected. Needless to say I was very happy, people congratulated me for a “ job well done”. I was ecstatic that I even posted the whole preaching on my blogsite (note: my no 1 theme is communication).
When my leader came back- I was all smiles, not saying anything but definitely waiting for a compliment. But to my shock, he told me he read my post and told me that the context of my whole preaching was wrong. But that’s not the end of it, I have to go back to my Bible, study the topic again-deeply look in the right context this time and make another blog retracting all my previous statement-Wow! Talk about intense reaction!
Despite of everything I was thinking and feeling, I swallowed my pride whole and did exactly what I was told-mind you it was not an easy thing because I really thought I did well that time.                                       
Little did I know that I would carry these lessons for life:
to handle God’s word with fear and trembling,
to teach biblical truths and not just give a good preaching;
to please God more than to win the favor of men
My leader learned a very good lesson as well:
to teach and train new preachers and not just assume they can do it;
to not just trust new people but more so empower them;
  to be diligent in imparting a discipline for correctly handling the word;
> this is what he has exactly done right after and for that I will be forever grateful 🙂
Thus I was able to develop the following habits that keeps on improving as I continuously interact with people who are seasoned in this field:
  Study hard (need I say more? hehe), pray even harder, and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit
    to make sure God’s words ministers through me first before I share it to others-no matter how difficult it would get;
  to ask as many mentors as I can about different parts of my preaching- I have learned that different preachers have different forte 
  to listen to podcast, read books and learned from seasoned preachers
   to bounce off my preaching to those who would give me honest and helpful feedbacks and get evaluation as well right after the event.
Indeed I am very thankful that my leader was not just content to trust me once to preach, but that he was committed to train me to be a great preacher.
I am thankful that he did not mince words in instructing me despite the fact that he knows I would get hurt –because truth be told it was a good pain. I am also thankful that God gave me the grace to keep on learning and keep on teaching along with  the same commitment that my mentors had for me.
My hope and my prayer is that we will spur one another to be guardians of His word.
As Paul Barker would always say in our Church History class:
“Bad theology kills people”- it literally did during the time of Crusades 🙂

Here’s a great reminder for all of us:

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who CORRECTLY HANDLES the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15
May the grace of God abound richly in your life J


its a Lonely Planet

Have you ever had those moments when you feel lost and alone in a sea of people?
Ever wondered why sometimes amidst a very long talk with someone you still feel unheard?
Its utterly crazy but there are those times as well when you have a “nagging thought” that something is wrong and you try hard figuring it out when you are not even sure it exist.
I have moments like that and usually its frustrating when you cant figure out where its coming from and “how to get it fixed”, scenarios like these run wildly in your mind:
A. maybe I’m not praying enough or not praying the “right things”
B. a little more bible reading might help, guess I’m not  just being focused at the moment;
C. worse case scenario is when people accuses you of “having sin in your heart” or not being “religious” enough or being too religious on the other end
It’s a never ending thought and action cycle-over thinking and analyzing things then overdoing what seems “logical” to be done.
Tonight while I was listening to Gary V. on High Street singing I Will Be Here I was just reminded of one simple thing:       
Sometimes all we ever needed is a constant reminder that God is here- His presence is real.
♫♪ I will be here
When you feel like being quiet

When you need to speak your mind
I will listen

And I will be here
When the laughter turns to cryin’

Through the winning, losing and trying

We’ll be together
I will be here ♫♪
I am not oversimplifying things but even Jesus said this:
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matt 11:28                    COME TO ME-that’s all He said, no ifs or buts or any other prerequisites.

I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.” Jeremiah 31:25
He will refresh and satisfy!. He will-not us!

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Isaiah 40:29
He gives strength and power! again He gives-not us!
JESUS IS WITH US
HE WILL … not us
Sometimes our biggest problem is in trying our best to be a “good Christian”, even the things we ought to just give to Jesus we do our best to “fix”. Sometimes our problem is not the real issue. The real issue is we don’t know how to abide, to be still and let Jesus be the one in charge.
So the next time you feel lonely, sad, weary, depressed, alone, unsure and even for other emotions imagined or real. Be utterly convince that
JESUS IS WITH YOU- His presence is all you ever needed.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10