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When God leaves a coffee cup.

Had a date with one of my girlfriends just to have a catch up one day.

After she helped me with a few errands, we finally decided to finally have a proper talk at a coffee shop. As always, sharing tasks can be very helpful as it can save time and effort for both parties so we decided that she will order our coffee and I… will have the task to look for our seats.

You see, coffee shops in London on a weekday at 5pm aren’t really as vacant as you could imagine. It’s right after office hours and you could see the whole place packed with busy people spreading their paperwork and laptops all around the tables.

As agreed, I had to look for the preferred seats that we wanted in which my friend specifically asked for ones near a plug so she could charge her phone. I, on the other hand, was looking for seats with cushioned sofas rather than wooden chairs so that it’d be comfier.

As I’ve searched through and fro, I had to break it to her that there were no vacant tables left available at the coffee shop. At all. If we were ever so desperate to get seats, we’d have to share larger tables with strangers. Usually, we wouldn’t mind, but at that particular time, we just wanted to have our own table without disturbing anyone. We went to get coffee to battle the cold autumn weather and I travelled all the way from the other side of London just to see her so I knew I had to find good seats.

I took a quick zoom once again around the place. I don’t know if my spirit was secretly interceding but at that time, I suddenly saw a coffee table that caught my attention. I looked around and saw that there was a dirty & used coffee cup left on a table with vacant seats, I asked those who were nearby and they said no one was sitting there.

I quickly left my coat there as a universal sign that it is reserved and put away the old coffee cup by the counter. As I was about to go back, I thanked the Lord for the seats and instantly it hit me… “What if the Lord left that coffee cup as a discreet reserved sign for us? I can’t remember the countless of times I’ve seen people (and myself) have avoided a seat on the train because there was a bunch of newspapers left on it. I’ve looked around the shop and I wondered what if He put this coffee cup on this table so that no one else will be tempted to get this one?”

The table was best suited for me and my friend. It had the cushiony sofa that I wanted and had the plug socket right underneath my friend’s seat. I looked around and saw that it was actually the only public plug socket available within the area we were seated in. What a favour!

Then the revelations poured in. I know He loves everyone and He’s sovereign enough to be fair. For those who didn’t get that seat that we had, He had His own plan for them and I believe it would be best suited for them. Through it all, I can’t help but think: “How many coffee cups have the Lord left for you and me as His way of reserving the best for us?”

He has the perfect table, a perfect plan that is best suited for us. Some people may find it unappealing at the time because they could think… “Ew, it’s dirty”…  or “I can’t be bothered to clean it”… the list could go on and on. In terms of real life, it could be careers or institutions that we think are unappealing. But God just wants us to make the effort and clear one simple coffee cup and see that He reserved it for us because it was actually the best place for us. It reminded me of the institution that I was in. It wasn’t really the most renown university in London, and I wasn’t really fond of it too… but as I progressed and believed that God had a portion for me in that place, He unfolded His gracious plan. Somehow I was able to exert the love of Jesus to my classmates and also found out that this university offered a degree that best suited my preference (which by the way, was not offered in other universities, Hallelujah!). So things actually worked out not only for my own benefit, but for others too. Most especially, for the Kingdom’s cause too.

My mind’s blown after this revelation. Looking on the other side, imagine how many coffee cups have thrown us off because certain tables were reserved for someone else? This could come in different forms in our lives. Perhaps a job interview we didn’t pass? A prestigious university that we so-desperately wanted to get in but didn’t? A cute guy/girl that didn’t return our feelings? The list could go on and on. This simple revelation reminded me that Jesus doesn’t only love me, but He loves others too. God is sovereign and He knows what He is doing. He does reserve tables for other people, and I must believe that He too reserved my own special table tailored for me.

If the coffee table represented God’s will in our lives, let’s just stop and think… where would God want me to sit?

Jesus loves you.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

And lean not on your own understanding;

In all your ways acknowledge Him,

And He shall direct your paths.

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When God Introduced Me To Will <3.

Busy busy bee.

Buzz buzz buzz. Buzz here, buzz there, buzz everywhere. So much buzzing that I completely allowed my devotional life to go down the hill!

“I’ll do it tomorrow Lord!”

“Lord next time! When I’m more free!”

“God, my schedule is so busy!”

I could go on and on about petty excuses I’ve made to avoid the heavy devotional time I needed to have with the Lord that was long overdue. There was so many of them!

I think one of the silliest excuses I’ve made was when I said, “Not tonight Lord, it’s late! Its too dark to write in my journal!”

Just revisiting that situation again makes me flinch.

Say what again? The room was too… “dark”… Really? Was there really no such thing as “a light switch”? Also… was it not because of procrastination that’s why this situation came up in the first place? Hmmm… either way, it was just another silly excuse I’ve said for leaving my devotional time with God to the last minute.

Praise the Lord. Through all my quirks and flaws, God is still so patient. He kept nudging me and pursuing me in all my failures even though I was too oblivious to budge.

It got to the point where I actually finally promised, “Okay Lord! I have a 6-7 hour flight to Toronto… We’ll have the whole flight to ourselves <3”. Initiating that I’d finally spend quality time with Him then.

I wonder if God actually believed those words. Maybe He did. Because love always hopes right? He always hopes that we make the right decisions… To choose Him. He always hopes, always trusts and always perseveres.

Through it all, as I finally got on the plane… I sat down and was prepping myself for the long-awaited “date” I had with Jesus. I was determined to get my soul wrecked. I was ready to bring it on.

Then I fell asleep.

I know, I know. That was terrible. What’s worst was that I actually woke up to eat the free inflight meal and then I went back to sleep again 😥

How rude.

I wonder how God felt or what He thought at that time… Talk about procrastination at its finest.

As I was in my deep sleep and was snoozing my head off… The Lord finally had it and He was about to budge me regarding this issue like never before.

So there I was… enjoying my sleep when I suddenly began dreaming that I was walking inside a building. As I was walking, I saw that my direction was headed towards a far off door that seemed to grab my purpose. As I was approaching closer and closer, I found out that it was a dressing room to someone named “Will Powers.” And when I entered the room, no one was there.

Then poof. I woke up.

I said “heh?” Who’s Mr. Will Powers? I did a swift pondering and thought who that celebrity was. Will… Ferrel? No. Before I proceeded to think of more celebrities with the name ‘Will’… it finally hit me.

Will Powers = Will-power.

The room was empty = I had no will-power.

Boy. The Lord has a sense of humour. He made me realise that I am in dire need for more supply of ‘will-power’ in my life. All the excuses and broken promises I’ve made served as an evidence for this rebuke… What a mess I’ve made.

He was right. In all these things, it was my choices that determined what I was going to do. I chose to postpone, I chose to prioritise other things, I chose to make excuses and I chose to fall asleep. These are the same choices that He cannot control because He has given me the gift of free will. The free will to choose Him, or not to choose Him.

So I finally spoke to Him… and He taught me the power of will to determine my choices in life in which determined the actions that I take. It was so funny because His correction was filled with love and grace… like He truly delights in disciplining me… spoken by a true Father who desires His daughter to be the best that she can be in His Presence.

The power of choice comes in every detail of our lives. Could it just be in devotional routines? Perhaps could it be about our calling? Could it be in terms of making a big move in our lives? Or maybe its just about the simple details of our daily routine? In all these things, are we aware that God is just waiting for our will to choose His will over our lives? We have the power to choose God or not. Good or bad. Life or death. Light or dark. To awaken or to stay asleep.

What will you choose?

Jesus loves you.

Deuteronomy 30:11-16 (NLT

THE CHOICE OF LIFE OR DEATH

11 “This command I am giving you today is not too difficult for you, and it is not beyond your reach. 12 It is not kept in heaven, so distant that you must ask, ‘Who will go up to heaven and bring it down so we can hear it and obey?’ 13 It is not kept beyond the sea, so far away that you must ask, ‘Who will cross the sea to bring it to us so we can hear it and obey?’ 14 No, the message is very close at hand; it is on your lips and in your heart so that you can obey it.

15 “Now listen! Today I am giving you a choice between life and death, between prosperity and disaster. 16 For I command you this day to love the Lord your God and to keep his commands, decrees, and regulations by walking in his ways. If you do this, you will live and multiply, and the Lord your God will bless you and the land you are about to enter and occupy.

When God didn’t strike my enemies.

“Vengeance is Mine, Says the LORD.” — How many times have we used that scripture to reassure ourselves that the Lord will punish our enemies?

I know I sure have. I mean, why can’t I use it? It’s scriptural, right?

Deuteronomy 32:35 -It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.”

 How many times have we been hurt by people in the past? Or could it be that we are still hurting right now after what someone has done unto us?

In all these things, whether past or present, for sure that some of us have wished the same thing to our adversaries… for the LORD to rise up and devour them.

Could it be a friend who stabbed you in the back? A lover who betrayed you? Family members who continually belittles you and make you feel worthless? Classmates who make fun of your faith? Workmates who abuse you and make you feel like such a push-over? Church members who gossip and says mean things about you? A leader who doesn’t appreciate you and makes you feel unworthy? — The list could go on and on.

I’ve had my fair share of hurt and pain caused by others. And I know that I’ve prayed to the Lord for Him to put my enemies to shame and to show them what’s up… but in a particular situation that happened recently in my life in where people have hurt me, instead of God rebuking them… He corrected me.

Yes, He did. As I pointed out what was wrong with them, He pointed out what was wrong with me. As I have pointed out how they’ve hurt me, He pointed out how I’ve possibly hurt them too. To the point where I got annoyed and questioned Him saying, “Didn’t You see how they’ve hurt me? Didn’t You see how they’ve offended me? Didn’t You see what they’ve done to me?!” –Me, me, me, me, me… Not noticing that all I thought about at that time was how I felt. Forgetting that Jesus, the Son of God, had the ultimate right to be offended on that cross yet openly chose to love.

His river of rebuke, filled with love and grace, reminded me of the time when I prayed to Him at the beginning of the year and said:

“Lord, help me love like Jesus. Help me love the unlovable. Strip me of any pride and help me humble myself down as Jesus did on that cross to save a sinner like me.”

Then BOOM! — His words just flowed and the river of His rebuke activated the waterfall of tears in my eyes. And oh boy was I overwhelmed. He began to tell me that instead of looking at other people’s faults, I needed to look at my own reflection and see whether I needed to work on mine.

Matthew 7:3-5 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

Ouchie… *cry* – Oh it hurts to be called a hypocrite by the Lord! But though my heart was pierced through His rebuke, I felt no condemnation whatsoever. His correction was for my benefit anyway, to transform me and to make me become the person He called me to be.

Yes, people whom I’ve trusted have hurt me. But through it all, God made me realise that yes, vengeance is His, but how is my heart when I wish that vengeance upon them? Am I filled with hatred and scorn? Did not Jesus Himself say to His perpetrators: Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.

Just writing those words fills my heart with so much love and tears. Our wonderful Saviour, who was mocked, spat on, humiliated, crucified and scorned at, was still able to say these beautiful words filled with love and grace upon those people who put Him on that cross.

Why do I look at the speck of sawdust in those people who’ve hurt me, when I can look in the mirror, the Word of God, and see my own reflection. I needed to look like love, grace, mercy and forgiveness. I needed to do a mirror check and a heart check whether God is highlighting an area in my life that needs changing. God must’ve allowed these situations in my life for a reason, right?

Was He taking my patience to another level? Is He correcting me in terms of my compassion? Perhaps He wants me to accelerate more in love or in grace? Do I reflect Jesus? Or do I see me? One thing God reminded me was that my self should have died a long time ago and that Christ must now live in me. Now if my self died a long time ago, I needed to know… what does He want me to do? Maybe there’s still self-centredness in me that needed dying?

Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

So there we have it, God didn’t strike my enemies because He wanted me to grow more in love and grace. He used this situation to change me from glory to glory and to make me more Christ-like. God didn’t strike my enemies because I myself was blinded by the plank in my own eye and I myself needed things to work on within me. Out of His grace, He had to pluck it out. I realised this when I was walking down the street and I asked the Lord:

“Why did I get a rebuke from You when I was hurt? Why didn’t you assure me that what they did to me was wrong? Why didn’t I see Your vengeance upon those who’ve hurt me? Was it MY fault that they hurt me?” 

Then He revealed to me, how would my attitude be like if I saw my enemies lowered by the Lord when my pride was at its high? How would it be like if a conceited person was comforted? Can you imagine a prideful person wishing vengeance upon other people and the Lord answers it? Oh no! Like adding fuel to the fire, it’s like the Lord allowing another dose of ego into my selfishness!

It’s a wonderful thing that our Lord is so full of wisdom that He knew just what to do. In all these things, He just wanted me to humble myself. He wanted me to be conformed to the image of His Son. The image of love, grace, mercy and forgiveness. To walk according to His perfect will in my life and to trust His good intentions.

So in all these things, let’s reflect on ourselves.

Have we wished vengeance upon others? In doing this, does it display love or hate? Pride or humility? Are we blinded by our own plank? Let’s carefully look at the situation and reflect on ourselves… How would Jesus truly want me to respond?

Jesus loves you.