It has been almost a year since I wrote my last blog. 10 months to be exact and I am so “encouraged” to write my first entry for 2014 today. ☺
I read another blog this morning and I really have to share it with everybody else:
Ms. Joy Tan-Chi Mendoza has been my inspiration since I attended a homeschooling seminar by HOMESCHOOL ASSOCIATION OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS (HAPI) last May 2012 with my husband. I looked up to her since then because of how she talks about her faith, God’s faithfulness, marriage, motherhood, homeschooling and how important it is to train and teach a child about Jesus. Reading and learning about her rape story today has made me love her more as my inspiration on how I can grow stronger in my faith. If you are also inspired by her and want to follow her journey, you can follow her blog “Teach With Joy” and be fond of her as much as I do.
What I realized today is that God really uses different stories and lives to ENCOURAGE others in Faith, Hope and Love. In Ms. Joy’s story particularly, God made her an instrument to encourage those who were abused to see the goodness and faithfulness of God despite tragedies. The other side of this truth though is the difficulty or hardship of the person being used by God to experience an actual tragedy and be part of the story being written by Him to share with others later on. Can you imagine how much pain you need to undergo, accept and heal from to be able to inspire others effectively? Same with leadership, it is always better or more effective to lead others by example than by force or fear. That is maybe why God made sure that trials will be part of our lives so we can learn from them, rise from them and later on have the credibility to talk about the things we’ve learned because we’ve experienced them first hand. People who would be hearing about your story would be left with only one choice — listen… because the actual experience speaks louder than opinion or perspective. That is also why God gave up His one and only Son to live like us and die for us so He can set an example of what “sacrifice” and “unconditional love” truly means.
The Bible says a lot about encouraging each other but these two are my personal favorites:
Hebrews 10:23-25 (NLT)
23 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. 24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
Ephesians 4:29 (NLT)
29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.
Encouraging others takes more than an actual experience or story though. It also takes COURAGE… Courage to tell and share your story no matter how painful it is and how deep it can bring you back to that pitch black hole you fell into when the story happened. I think no one would ever want to go back to a painful experience that almost cost his/her whole life. More than courage, encouraging others takes a lot of Faith, Hope and Love really. Faith is what will tell you that no matter what happened before, God has made a “new creation” in you and He can always make a “new life” out of you. This means that no matter how much pain and fear can sharing your story with others bring back, He can put the light back in a snap because He’s already healed you. Hope, on the other hand, is what will remind you of Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you… plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Love, as a last note, is what would keep you sharing your story with others who badly need to see God’s light and love. It is also the only thing that would remind you why you are accepted, healed and restored…
…so continue to share your stories, inspire others how you’re able to overcome trials and encourage others in growing their Faith, Hope and Love.
May God’s grace be with you always. ☺