For Giving to the Lord

Something wondrous happened on Friday overnight worship service. A brother in Christ, a young man, testified in the pulpit that before he and his family received the Lord Jesus Christ, they were so poor back in the province that their meal often consisted of boiled rice eaten with sugared water. But he said that when they embraced the Lord and served Him, they began to receive His abundant blessings. He and his other siblings were able to go to school. He was thanking the Lord that he has now finished college, then went on to offer a special song for Him.

(image from Google)

And that was what touched a chord in me once again. He sang Thank You for Giving to the Lord. While I listened, I was biting my lip and trying my best not to sob (for I was then having difficulty breathing). The song brought me back to Pampanga Fasting House, precious memories of over eight years ago.

I was lying on my cot in my corner in the chapel (I had written about this corner before in one of my posts, but I will tell it again here). You see, when our family went to stay there to beg God for my healing, we also brought with us a single foldable bed. The plan was for me to stay in one corner of the chapel so I could listen to beloved brethren singing, praising, worshiping, and praying. These were fasting brethren. My cot was placed at the left corner beside the chapel entrance. Some sister-workers draped curtains around it so I could have some privacy.

The morning praise and worship ended at 2 in the afternoon, during which all the fasting brethren and workers went to their quarters to rest. I was always left alone in the chapel with only the utter quiet inside and the sound of the gentle breeze coming from the windows as company. But one afternoon, one of the workers played a song in the sound system and set it to repeat endlessly, then he left.

Thank You for Giving to the Lord (I didn’t know it then, it was my first time to hear it) played over and over. I liked the song at once. And it blessed me. So much.

How can I forget those days of suffering interspersed with the Lord’s blessings and miracles?

The true Church of the living God is beautiful. It is the Body of Christ. Everyone has a role to play, a gift to offer back. Everyone has something to give – rich and poor, young and old, male and female, students, professionals, businessmen, and even those who have not attained education. These all give for the kingdom of God.

Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in ourministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. (Rom. 12:6-8)

I always think that if not for the Body of Christ which prays and fasts and gives, where would I be now?

So, I thank the Lord for them who have given their lives selflessly for the Gospel, prayed and fasted day and night for the salvation of souls: our dearly beloved Hon. Pastor Wilde E. Almeda and Asst. Pastor Lina C. Almeda.

I thank Him for the many men and women, with their families, who followed the footsteps of our beloved spiritual parents and they, too, answered the Lord’s calling and forsook the life this world offers and became workers in the Lord’s vineyard.

I thank Him for those faithful brethren who give, so that the Gospel will spread to all corners of the earth: by foot, by all means of transportation, by radio, by TV, by the Internet.

Those who stand before rebels on the mountains, before patients (some very sick and dying) in hospital wards, before prisoners in jails, before believers of the Quran in a foreign land, before harried people in the marketplace, before skeptics in the workplace, etc. (This is not just a general list, but real stories and testimonies of brethren who go the distance to bring the Gospel to all people).

Those who give of their resources, talents, time, energy, wisdom, selfless love. For we cannot love without giving.

Thank you for giving to the Lord!

For those who are reading this in email, click here to view the music video.

My gratitude list ~ the things I’m thankful to the Lord for. Continuing to count the gifts:

66. For all those who subscribed to my blog via email and those who contacted me requesting for a copy of The Wrestlings along the Narrow Path– every time I send a copy I count it a blessing!

67. For finishing 8 days of extended whole morning fast

68. For the testimonies I heard during Sunday service – the Lord Jesus raising up a mother dying of leukaemia! And one other miracle which I hope to write about at Minister of Mercy and share it here later this week.

69. For the powerful message of an elder in Church who came from America.

70. For one of the kids’ young rabbits darting here and there in the garden, his energy inspires me; now we call him Dart.

71. For the exquisite gifts sent by a former classmate and good friend from Tallahassee, FL.

72. For my new inspirational books and cook books.

73. The Lord opening my spiritual eyes WIDER to His truth and to the knowledge of Him; I hope this will stay forever.

 74. For a new iPod (my first!) and speaker dock – now I can listen to praise music non-stop!

75. Listening to Hannah play Beauty and the Beast and one other happy tune.

I might be linking up with these lovely blogs.

Journey with Jesus,