Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Advancing... AOT Articles

The AOT experience as a whole..

I praise God for these 2 months – for all that I learned, discovered, and all that He said. I am very grateful to the Lord for this training. I am also very blessed with the lives of those with me during the entire training – mga higala(friends) at igsuon(and siblings) hehe J , kuya Joie, kuya Mattew, Kuya Jeff, and Kuya Jess who travels back and forth from Davao to Samal island which is really far and at times Kuya Jess would have to wait long for the ferry boat.  Hehehe J.  Hay! I’m really very blessed with their lives and testimonies. I’m very blessed with their faith in God.  All of them have been a big encouragement to me.
Something specific that I really thank God for is how He really speaks to me through His Word through the book Experiencing God. Every day, little by little, He by his Holy Spirit helps me understand what knowing and doing the will of God really means. Before I often ask the Lord, “Lord, what is your will for my life?”. I thought this question is just right, but I learned that is wrong. Instead we should ask, “Lord what is your will?”, because the focus should be on the Lord and not myself. Once I know God’s will, I should adjust my life to Him to obey his will. The fact is I no longer really have the right to this life because He owns me and I have surrendered my life to Him when I received Him in my life as Lord and Savior. “If you really love me, you will obey what I command.” – John 14:15

The Way of the Cross
This book really helped me. Praise God! Through this book or compilation of articles, God taught me what I need to do before I continue following Him. That is why I feel like something is missing, that there is something that I have yet to do or confess to the Lord. It’s actually this: The very first is I must be broken daily before the God. I shall have to give up all my rights. I shall no longer live to please self. I must be willing for God to show me the truth about myself. Unless I do this I cannot have fellowship with Him.  I must be ready to listen to what God tells me. I am really thankful to the Lord because here and through this He made me understand better what Galatians2:20 really means.
Our proud self must be broken. Only then can the Lord Jesus, who lives in us can fully reign in our hearts!

Prayer requests:
o   Courage and boldness to share the Gospel (to anyone, anytime, anywhere!)
o   Humility
o   Be broken daily before God
o   Salvation for my parents
o   NT Caraga – leaders, participants, places etc.

April (left)with Emely ready to eat durian

April, 16 – NT Caraga

  Continue to pray for April, she and her team are serving this summer in Dinagat Island.
  Pray also that the deep roots of deception on the people of this island will finally be cut and that their minds and hearts be open to the Truth – Jesus Christ is God and all in heaven, on earth and under the earth will bow down to Him. – Philippians 2

Monday, April 29, 2013

Advancing.. AOT Articles

What did God show you this entire season?
God showed me many things within this two months especially regarding my relationship with Him… that it isn’t just verbal confession of faith or all talk, but it should be seen in my works and life. God gave me a wider and longer perspective. that I should not always settle or judge by what I see, like when i look at the ocean and only see water – blue, dark blue, green, but if i take a dive or snorkel, i will find a whole new different world out there, so much better than i thought or had judged it to be.
Psalm 42:8 says, “ By day the Lord directs his love, by night his song is with me – a prayer to the God of my life.”
I learned that my relationship with the LORD is whats most important and that I should fully trust HIM and His plans even when I don’t understand and when things don’t go the way I expected them to. No matter how heavy my, your, burdens are, let us learn to trust God for He is our Faithful and Only Refuge. God is the only way!
I thank the Lord for opening my heart and mind to understand and continue to understand thsese truths. To God be all the glory for all the great things He has done!

Prayer requests:
For NT mission opportunity to continue to grow all over the country so this mission opportunity will be available to more young people reaching more unreached places.
For the churches we serve in Palawan : the church in Brgy. Luzviminda, the church in Brgy. Sicsican and in Fleures Hotel
For other barangays in Palawan, that more will be reached and come to faith.
For the plans to franchise or localize NT in Palawan so more young people from Palawan can join in the coming summers.
Pray for the people of Bandera
Pray for the people in Malaysia, Laos, Vietnam and all other UPGs and UUPGs in the world.

~in Christ,
Maribel Saludar, 22 – Palawan

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Advancing... AOT Articles

House Church –On Book of Mark

One goal of Nehemiah Team is to Open doors and plant churches. We use strategic ways to have opportunities to share the Gospel to find the person/s of peace, and then have bible study with them that would lead to the formation of a house church. In the Book of Acts, we can see how Paul planted churches. He went to a town, preached the Good News about Jesus Christ and those who believed, he strengthened and encouraged. He also trained the new leaders he chose to lead the local church then he left and went to another place and did the same. We also are encouraged to follow Paul’s example.
In planting a church, I learned that it is not that complicated. It shouldn’t be. It is simple and should just be based on Scriptures. I’ve said so not because I’m an expert but because I was able to experience that in our team. There were many consecutive nights that we had our team devotion or house church (and at the same time training how to handle a house church). Six of us took turns in leading it and the rest of us were assigned as their coaches. For the message, we used the stories from the Book of Mark in order. We had done it in order, so that we will not miss the context and understand the story even more.
Normally, when we do house church, someone would open in prayer, then with or without a guitar or any other musical instruments we sing 2-3 worship songs that are familiar to everyone. After that, we share our thanks giving and praises to the Lord, review or accountability time then the message and prayer time. I found that it is not that hard to do house church following this flow especially if there’s always a time for practice. I like doing it this way, simple as possible so that it would be reproducible.  
  One great thing I really liked when we are doing house church is the way the message is delivered. We used participatory type of bible study. In this way, every one of us participated. Especially, as everyone answers   to the basic questions such as:  What did you like?,  How did God speak to you through the story and how will you apply this in your life? I saw how the Holy Spirit is working in each one of us. Most of the time maybe, I am too excited to have the house church to hear more from the Lord! He is really revealing Himself to us and it is so true that He speaks more than one person can hear. That is why it is really great if everyone from the church would really have a chance to participate. It’s so simple but it rocks!

Emely, 23 - NT Luzon

Pray with Emely as she  facilitates training and supervises teams for NT in Zamboanga

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Advancing... AOT Articles

Living a Life that Glorifies God

Gate 7  Water Gate : God’s Word

Your word will be the last word.
Your promises will stand forever more.
Though some may scoff and write me off,
But your word will be the last word.
Your word will be the last word.
  These specific lines from the song Your Word that was our theme song for Gate 7 would, I guess really some up what God taught me through this topic.
                We watched videos of Discovering the Bible – a kind of like a documentary on the authenticity of the Bible and just its basics. Through this video I appreciated the simplicity of the Bible more and even the Scribes and their faithfulness in scribing, really writing the scriptures very carefully and delicately. I appreciated that the Bible simply meant book.  And actually being the Bible that we use, it isnt just actually a book but a library having 66 books. But what is more is it is not just a book, or a collection of tales and fictions, or theories, or a person’s ideas and principles, nor a collection of books on different topics, rather it is a Holy Book having 66 books with hundreds and some thousands years of gap in writing by different people, consistent with history, written creatively. and of course considering the gaps of times of writing, these authors were not together but each of them wrote in really creative ways addressing different kinds of situation and appealing to different kinds of audiences. And the greatest thing is that this different books by different people of different generations wrote only about One person and for one purpose: Luke 24: 44-47, Ephesians 3.1-11 - the coming of the Messiah. That He will suffer much and be crucified and by His sacrifice  repentance and forgiveness will be proclaimed to all nations through the church. Awesome. 2 peter 1.21 , and that the scriptures no matter how so old they are have more than sufficient evidences of old old manuscripts to prove its authenticity  and authority, and the authority of the Bible did not come from the people that put it together as it is now, but that every individual books in itself are with authority, been proven inspired and widely used by the early believers.

                Now lets go back to the lines of a song at the very top! I think that aside from the things i learned through Discovering the Bible, I think watching the movie the Book of Matthew  and Acts is my favorite. I think specifically every instance  in  the video and the book with the apostle Peter. I guess because I see so much of my character in Peter – so outspoken, I guess really talking a lot, driven by emotion or curiosity or something.  And though that video is kind of like the director’s interpretation of the Gospel of Matthew, I believe that it is close to the reality of the Lord and how he dealt with people while He was here on earth – so full of grace and truth. I love and really like how he deals with every lack of belief, every reluctance, assumption, dullness, or assumption and whatsoever of his students. How he rebukes in love with a warm smile and that pain of truth. How he would rub their hair, hug them or just laugh with them. I think Jesus is possibly like that. And truly the world may have and some continue to scoff at Peter or in their own list write him off, God won’t. That is what He said in His word. And only the Lord and maybe Peter knew what the Lord was working on in his heart. The same thing with me. People can know who I was, and what I still have done after knowing Christ and I may still do something foolish or be “too outspoken” , and they may write me off an scoff at me, or they may do that as I obey the Lord, but the Lord will never leave me an nothing can ever take me away from His love nor would he ever take back the forgiveness He has graced on me.
                Peter denied Him 3 times.  I can imagine how painful and shaming it is for Peter, but more painful it is for Christ to see the pain in His friends eyes , I think, even though He has foreknowledge of it. But at the resurrection  the Lord made a specific mention of Peter to the women who would bring the news and later in Jhon 21, the Lord reinstated Peter.
                To His betrayer, despite the fact that He knew who he would be the whole time, He loved him just as much. And to the pharisses , every “Woe to you” was truth, harsh it may be, but still out of an out pour of love. My Lord Jesus, so full of Grace and Truth! 

- Cecil, 28- NT Luzon

Pray with Cecil as she travels to assist teams and mobilize  in the country these next couple of months. 

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Advancing... AOT Articles

Living a life that Glorifies God

Gate 8 – Horse Gate : Spiritual Warfare

Maayong Adlaw mga igsuon kang Kristo,

The Lord is so much good!!! I can’t believe it, it’s been already two months when I left Batangas City, and went to Davao City, Samal Island to get some advance training, I have seen God really working everywhere, in any situation, and to everyone. It is really true what the Lord Jesus has said in John 4:35; it says,  “Do you not say, ‘Four months and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.”  What a clear command from our Lord, they are ready, people are ready, many of them are dying not knowing Christ and also waiting for someone to tell them about God’s undeserved grace!

If you say “NO”! He is not Lord, if you say “YES”!! He is Lord! Is he the Lord of your life?
Now I want to share about what I have learned from one of our topic in AOT, Spiritual Warfare.
 What I really like and also helpful to me, is one of our memory verse in Nehemiah Teams it says’,” For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces or evil in the heavenly realms.” – Ephesians 6:12. Notice the truth Christians! “NOT against flesh and blood” the people are NOT the enemy, religions are NOT the enemy, there is something Spiritual Battle happening in the heavenly realm. There is only one enemy and he is Satan the Devils. The spiritual warfare study is about; Learning to recognize the strategy of the enemy, refusing to cooperate with the devil schemes of strategy and aggressively cutting them off in Jesus name! Every strategy of the enemy leads to:
·         Deception
·         Bondage
·         Destruction

So I realized now what’s happening to my family, friends, to my City, to my Country, and other Country.! They are been deceived by the prince of darkness, and it opens my eyes to Go! And to pray for other people group from the whole world and cutting them off in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that also I must do something, I must pray and I must tell other people(Christians) also to Go and reach the unreached people groups in my own country or even outside of the country they must know that there is victory in Christ Jesus.  They must also  hear about the love and free gift of Salvation that only through Christ Jesus by faith in Him.

ALL should Go and Go to ALL. In Matthew 24:14 says ; ”And this gospel of kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” See? It has to be finished! You will be excited for this if you know to yourself that you’re already saved, you will also be excited to move and pray for all nations, then if you’re “not” , you are in a big trouble with your relationship with God. God has only one method to make His name known to all nations, and it is us, believers-Christians! Are you “not” one of “us”?
Once William Carey a missionary in India has said; Attempt great for God, expect great from God!

- Mark J. A. del Rosario, 19, NT Luzon

* Mark is now in Palawan leadingand facilitating training for  the first local NT there. he has also made a commitment to join NT american in Cebu this June and july. 
Continue to pray with him and for his family.