Reflection: Church Service-“Glory of God in and out of the “church walls”

Below are some of the songs that we sung during “worship music” time at church this past Sunday (April 2nd 2017), which I had to reflect and share on how God personally spoke to me through each individual song. Feel free to share yours down below…

Music: Karaoke-“Shekinah Glory” by Crazy lil’ Sal creativemusicartsy.wordpress.com

“I Worship You In The Spirit” Shekinah Glory Ministry lyrics

Sal: May this song be a prayer daily! We need more of Him throughout the week (not just on church days). “We want more” (releasing of His power to give us strength or whether for His healing power to be show to the people around you that might need it).
How does this song speak to you?

Music: Karaoke-“Holy Spirit” (originally by Bryan & Katie Torwalt) by Crazy lil’ Sal creativemusicartsy.wordpress.com

Holy Spirit – Bryan and Katie Torwalt – Lyric Video

Sal: Let us bring His presence outside of the “Church” walls! ..to our families, communities, workplace, nations, etc…! After recording this and singing it again, I remembered how this particular verse took out..

“..Help up become more aware of your presence…”

I pray that we all become more aware of your presence and how God is trying to “speak” to us in our daily life circumstances.

How does this song speak to you?

Music: Karaoke-“Come Alive… Dry Bones” (originally by Lauren Daigle) by Crazy lil’ Sal creativemusicartsy.wordpress.com

“Come Alive (Dry Bones)” featuring Lauren Daigle – Live from the CentricWorship Retreat

Sal: I thought of the game of “trench” I used to play at school growing -up on how we had to use a kick ball or something soft (ball) and hit one of our opponents to get freed from the “dungeon” behind enemy lines. We as “believers” need to take an “active” role (e.g. intercessory prayer and asking God how we can “reach out” to them) like this game on “rescuing” fellow brethren who have “backslidden” from their faith.

How does this song speak to you?

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Summer Distractions: Keep Your Eyes on Jesus!

During church yesterday (Sunday, June 21st 2015), the theme of “Keeping your Eyes on Jesus” was running around my thoughts or mind. Just last Sunday, I was at another church (Church of Acts) in St. Paul when visiting my “hometown”. The pastor shared (paraphrasing) about “What looks “good” (in the outside) might not be “good” at all”. I felt like it was a “word of knowledge” (a.k.a. “prophetic ‘warning’ word) to the church congregation (body overall) for this summer. He wasn’t specific on “what exactly”, but in general the temptations of the up-coming summer season. I was reminded of this when we sung this song at church..

A Mighty Fortress | Christy Nockels

PRE-CHORUS:
We will keep our eyes on You
We will keep our eyes on You..”

Have you ever felt a “personal” message or theme during the worship music time?

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So how can “we” keep our eyes on Him during the up-coming summer months?

I reflected on my summer biking challenge I’m currently participating in. During the early part of my biking last night, I was praying (interceding) for the homes/businesses/neighborhoods I rode my bike by last night. We all love to enjoy the summer, right? We can pray in our mind whatever or wherever we are doing! This is my personal challenge for you all that is reading this.

I then encouraged a “women of God” after service that she shared a similar theme years ago at church with cats keeping their eyes on (food?..forgot the exact word)…but, we need to be like that “cat”..keep our eyes on Jesus!

How the songs for Sunday’s worship service lived out for me during the week

It’s been about a year now since joining my local church worship team as I’ve previously loved singing to the Lord. My passion singing praise music to Him as grown over the years as I’ve grown in my personal relationship with the Heavenly Father. There has been ups and downs as this is part of life. However, my longing to please my “Heavenly Dad” keeps me going through the good and bad. It’s been a year now and I feel like it’s important to share what my experience has been like so far. There is so much to share, so I’ll just condensed to my reflection on just a week’s worth on how preparing for the songs this past Sunday (March 15th 2015) touched me last week.

When we sign-up for the local church worship team, we commit to at least a Sunday service to be part of an assigned team. It’s not just that Sunday we need to take our schedule off to be available, but we need to also take time on a Thursday (half our to hour and a half depending the amount of time needed for preparation) and an hour or so prior to that Sunday service. Well, last week, the worship team leader (Seth B.) emailed all of us on the list of songs we need to practice prior to Thursday’s “group” practice. The song that really touched me during the week was…

…the reason was because I was going through a particularchallenge” during the week. It was a “challenge” I was starting to get overwhelmed as it’s been almost over a decade in the making. Well, on Thursday afternoon prior to evening practice, I was listening to this song and God was really speaking to me on one of the lines…

“…light that is coming
for the heart that holds on
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
Still I will praise You
Still I will praise You
-from worshiptogether.com

….He was speaking to me about “not giving-up” (e.g. see Book of Job) in this particular challenge (or any others) and to keep persevering (e.g. 1 Thessalonians 5:17) in faith and to NOT let any circumstance that will stop me from “praising” Him. I then started to sing this particular song louder with joy and was “pumped-up” prior to practice. After a good practice, I went home and there came a “breakthrough

…” as I got an email that was an answer to prayer, which was just another step to a “brighter” light (not the end, but a step closer ) :)…Praise the Lo-d!!!!

I was touched more with the other songs Sunday morning during the practice session “before” service as I would write down in my notes …

“Grace Like Rain

“Amazing grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost but now I’m found
Was blind but now I see so clearly
christianitylyricsonline.com

“I Lift my Hands”

“Let faith arise
I lift my hands to believe again
You are my refuge, You are my strength
As I pour out my heart, these things I remember
You are faithful, God, forever

Be still, there is a river”Klove.com (great “faith-building” online radio station)

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“All is Well

“He lowers us to raise us
So we can sing His praises
Whatever is His way all is well

He makes us rich and poor
That we might trust Him more
Whatever is His way all is well

O Taste and See

“O Taste and see that the Lord is good(2x)
O Taste and see that the Lord is good to me
You have turned my mourning into dancing
Put off my rags and clothed me with gladness
And I will arise and I will praise you
I’ll sing and not be silent
newreleasetuesday.com

How has God been good to you? What are you thankful to God for today, yesterday, last year, etc..? Share your answered prayers or blessings and NOT be silent to encourage others! Ever night, I reflect on these questions and write them down, so by the end of the month-I try to summarize them in a monthly blog. This helps me to over weigh the challenges I go through and remember the “blessings” instead, which gives me a more peaceful rest at night.

What songs touches you? Which lines/lyrics sticks out the most?

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Personal Life Messages from the movie Unbroken

I watched the anticipating movie “Unbroken” the other day (CHRISTmas) with my parents (my grandfather was captured as a POW as a “Filipino” civilian and survived as a cook) and still absorbing the personal messages from this inspirational movie in this season in my life. I was first introduced to this real-life story (Laura Hillenbrand’s “Unbroken”) by Neil, pastor of Harvest Community Church (Fargo, ND) and host to a weekly morning Bible study-fellowship group I attend in Morris, who gave me to read and share with one of my friends (college student from Japan renter) years ago. Unfortunately, my renter wasn’t interested in reading this book, but was inspired by the story. I got more interested in this story when Neil shared about this book was going to be movie on facebook. I’ve been looking forward to this movie since this Spring and now anxious to share about it with others.

Zamperini’s life story has taught me many life virtues (e.g. perseverance, gratefulness, commitment, and forgiveness) in this point of my life, which I’ll try to share as many of them down below. One of them is perseverance, which the stories he shared of what he endured during WWII is very inspirational. I’ve read many stories from that war, which has helped me to not complain and be more grateful no matter what challenges I’m facing in my life. The sacrifices many soldiers faced (including my own parents’ country-Philippines-> Filipino Military
Bataan Uncensored Paperback – December, 1991
, a must read book!) during that war helped my generation to reap the blessings we have right now. It’s important to never forgot our own history (U.S., Philippines, and any other nation), so we won’t take for granted what we are blessed with.

One of the memorable scenes or lines (motivational-inspirational quotes) that stuck out the most was when Louis made that covenant-commitment to God…

“If you get me through this I swear I’ll dedicate my whole life to you. Please”-Louis Zamperini (from briandoddonleadership.com)

I made a similar promise to God (Heavenly Father) before giving my life to Him back in the winter of 1996. I went skiing at a ski resort (Andes Tower Hills in Kensington, Minnesota). I went down hill skiing with a bunch of college friends (international students) and wanted to show off, so I just jumped on this chair life not knowing how far and big the hill I would be down hill skiing at. Well, when I got to the top, I realize this was higher than I thought and already forgot how to ski. I haven’t gone down hill skiing for years (should’ve gone on the smaller hill or bunny hill to get some practice). Well, this would be called, “Pride before the fall”. There was no way down but to go with my skis, so I had to fall 4x or so to finally decided to walk (after feeling my knee really swollen or hurt). I went to the ER at the local hospital (Morris, MN) and was at the X-Ray room. The doctor took an X-Ray and left the room by myself. This was when I had my “first” BIG encounter with God. I was more concerned about the financial cost of the medical expense than what happened to me physically. I then just called out to God and told Him-“God, if your real. Heal me and I”ll follow You”. Well, the doctor came back and told me that I didn’t break anything, which would be the beginning of my journey of faith (see testimony) Ever made a promise (e.g. Matthew 5:37-“Let your yes, be “YES”) with God, family, friends, etc…? I challenge and encourage you to “follow-through”!

I read and heard many stories of the atrocities in World War II and many wars before and after. Even though this movie just showed one perspective of one American’s experience. The torture that he and many others out there is very “inhumane”. Unfortunately, we as a county didn’t learn from this and still use this to this day (e.g. Shocking cases in CIA report reveal an American torture program in disarray – Spencer Ackerman in New York Tuesday 9 December 2014 ) This is an embarrassment as a nation to this world as we “preached” against inhumanitarian acts of other nations (e.g. North Korea, China, Russia, Iran, etc..).

In my response to what our nation has done and even myself (I too have “wrong” people in different ways and levels due to sin)…”forgive them for they do not know what they do”. Zamperini’s story can be applied with what’s going on today (e.g. Ferguson-we need to forgive each other for the wrong that’s been done to one another). There are “good” and “bad” cops-same with any group of people. We can’t “judge” or “stereotype” (e.g. NOT all Somolians are “evil” as the movie “Black Hawk Down” might stereotype these people group) any group because of the actions of a “few” of a group of people (e.g. race, nationality, political party, religion, institution, etc..) The real “enemy” is satan and his cronies (demons) that try to deceive and divide the human race to “fight” one another. It’s God’s love that is shared in the Gospel (Good News) of Jesus Christ behind the message of Zamerini’s forgiveness!

Is there someone out there that has hurt (e.g. abuse) you in the past? Just as Zamperini had one-the “Bird”-was a “bully” or “tormentor” while he was Prisoner of War. When Zamperini went home after the war, he was like many veterans that would suffer from PTSD. He would have nightmares, which I too had them at times growing-up for different reasons. Do you have trouble sleeping at night? Well, Zamperini started to sleep better after his “encounter” with God at a Billy Graham Crusade and forgave his “enemy” (abuser, bully, etc..). Have you forgave that individual(s) that hurt you in the past? It’s not easy, right? You can’t do it on your own because you need that strength from God alone, which I personally (e.g. my own bully story) got when I gave my life to Him.

Ephesians 4:32New International Version (NIV)https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+4%3A32&version=ESV32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.Good News Lovehttps://www.facebook.com/groups/1418219528396722/http://www.openbible.info/topics/forgivenessIan McCormack - an Atheist - Dead on Morgue Slab - Goes to Hell, then to Heaven and Back!! http://youtu.be/59mRZ1Vj8ZUmore...  http://life.goodnewseverybody.com/forgiveness.html

If you have read this book or watched the movie, curious-what was your famous line/quote/scene in the movie? why? what did you learn? How are you applying it in your life to this day?

IMG_0927
“Movie theater in Oakdale, Minnesota where I saw the movie “Unbroken” with parents on CHRISTmas Day

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