October 2009

The Reality of Spiritual Warfare

  Photo by weeklyrob       I remember growing up as a new Christian in high school and some of my spiritual leaders would tell me the catch-22 that Christians face, especially when it comes to spiritual warfare. The catch-22 goes like this – “If you are growing spiritually, Satan will come against you to hinder you from growing, but in order to fight off the attacks, you have to grow stronger. But if...

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Prelude to Revival

  Photo from chrisbraymusic.com       A. W. Tozer wrote, “Have you noticed how much praying for revival has been going on of late–and how little revival has resulted? I believe the problem is that we have been trying to substitute praying for obeying, and it simply will not work. To pray for revival while ignoring the plain precept laid down in Scripture is to waste a lot of words and get nothing for...

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From the Crowd to the Core

  Photo on dpnow.com       In all new church plants, one of the biggest concerns or dilemmas is trying to figure out how to get people who visit your church to become committed disciples who will take on the role of leadership. Usually the linear process is: bring visitors in, reach out to them, integrate them to the church, and equip them to reproduce themselves. I don’t think there is anything wrong with...

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Obsessed with Fame

  Photo by AP       The whole world was riveted with the thought of a boy stuck in a runaway balloon. But horror turned into shock when evidence slowly emerged with the possibility of the whole ordeal being a hoax made up by the parents. The shock then turned into disbelief and anger. The question that kept on running through the minds of people was – “How can parents involve their child in...

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Preaching the Gospel to Ourselves

  Photo from images.com       Over the years, I have been trying to teach our congregation(s) the importance of the Gospel. The Gospel is critical in our journey with Christ, not only when we get saved, but in the present and into the future. So often we apply the Gospel message towards a definitive point in time –the day we accepted the message of Christ’s death and resurrection by faith for salvation. The...

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Quicker Updates

  Photo by kent.edu       Someone from the States asked me if I can update about the earthquake situation in Indonesia on my blog. The reason behind the request is that people hear the news about the earthquakes (there have been more recently) and the terrorist bombing and they want to know if our family and the team are safe. For those of you who want a faster update, it might be better...

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The Reminders through the Call to Prayer

  Photo from Freewebs       I think one of the things that people have to get used to while they are in Indonesia is the daily calls to prayer. All throughout the day, you are able to hear the multiple calls to prayer for the Muslim people. The retreat center that I am preaching at has several mosques within a block distance. Therefore, the call to pray feels as if it is right...

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High School Retreat Revisited

  Photo by Steven Fernandez       For some reason, it seems so long ago that I spoke at a high school youth retreat, but in actuality, it has only been a few years. There is something about youth retreats that still has a special place in my heart. First of all, my first tenure in ministry was at a youth group. I have fond memories of how God did some transformative work in...

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My First Exam as a Professor

  Photo from nomadlife.org       This past week was my first time writing up a midterm exam on the college level. So many things ran through my mind. I thought about some of the most difficult exams that I have taken in my life. I thought about some of the easiest test that I have taken in my life. Then I started to think about how easy/hard I should make the exam for...

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Power Outages

  Photo by uchicago.edu       I have heard about the power outages that occur once in awhile in Indonesia. People have told me to be prepared for them because it happens randomly and the electricity can be out for hours. It was all head knowledge until we experienced our first power outage. Now, in the last 3-4 days we have experienced daily power outages and a couple of them have lasted for 7...

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I Don’t Want a Revival

  Photo by Northview       Some years ago, I was reflecting on how God sent revivals throughout history. At first, I was baffled at the fact that we haven’t been experiencing the type of revival that we read about in history. There were some of the more recent revivals in the 1990’s and early 2000’s but many of them were shorted lived. This is when I began to ask God, “Why aren’t there...

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Obama’s Possible Miscue on Culture

  Photo by Presswire       The 2016 Olympics will be officially held in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil (yes, I am spelling it with an “S” instead of a “Z”… spelling with the “S” is the official Portuguese way). It was a joyous occasion for people of Brasil because this will be the first time that a country from South America would host the Olympics. It was a bit of a shocker for the...

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Batiks are Indonesian

  Photo on Friendster       On October 2nd of this year, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has officially recognized the batik as an Indonesian cultural treasure. In order to celebrate this recognition, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono asked Indonesians to wear a batik on this day. This was a huge win for the Indonesians because there were some people in Malaysia that were arguing the batiks were from their country....

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Earthquakes in Indonesia

  Photo by Reuters       So much has happened in our 3 months in Indonesia. Not only in terms of the church plant, but we have been welcomed by a terrorist bombing in Jakarta, an earthquake (that we actually felt), and now another earthquake in Sumatra Island. The death toll is slowly rising as more bodies are being found underneath the rubble. The 7.9-magnitude earthquake in the coastal city of Padang several days...

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