written by Paul Ushijima
The other day I was with a pastor who was relating the joy and challenges of ministry. He told me that he sometimes talks to graduated GOC’ers who struggle spiritually and comment that they cannot find the discipleship and accountability they want in their local church. He asked me what I would say to them.
Behind this issue can be a lack of contentment. Contentment is a characteristic modelled for us by both Jesus and the Apostle Paul (Phil. 4:11-13) as examples for us.
Continue reading “Contentment +”
I love hanging out with Chris and our two little boys and peppering them (okay, mostly the younger one) with kisses and hugs.
My family moved to America when I was just seven years old. Thanks to the kindness and outreach of some Christians, my parents were exposed to the gospel very quickly after we had moved to America. They became believers about a year afterwards and quickly got involved with the local Chinese church. As I grew up in the church, I was taught the gospel very early on. God was gracious to grant me a soft heart from an early age and I do not remember ever questioning or rejecting what I had heard. I knew I was a sinner and that I needed Jesus to save me from my sins. While I do not have a specific date I can pinpoint to, I believe God saved me at some point during my elementary school years.
Continue reading “Testimony of the Week: Linda Gee”
Friday Night Devotional by Geo Ng, 4/22/16
“I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.” Job 42:2
God is sovereign. He orders everything, controls everything, and rules over everything.
Continue reading “God’s Sovereignty and His Glory”
Why God’s sovereignty mattered to Daniel, and why it should matter to you
written by A C
Lately, the buzz in the media has been centered around certain political figures jostling to become the next President of the United States. And as the drama of state primaries makes its crescendo towards November, the outlook already seems extremely bleak. In what is shaping up to be a finale of choosing between the lesser of two evils, this year’s election process is leaving many of us justifiably apprehensive about who #45 will be and what kind of era they will usher in. What should we make of the presidential hopefuls, and how should we think through the inevitable political change that looms upon our nation’s horizon?
Continue reading “Our God is on His Everlasting Throne”
Daniel Stevens graduated from UCLA in 2012 with a BA in Greek, and from TMS with an MDiv in 2015. He hopes to do further research in the field of New Testament studies. He enjoys coffee, reading, reading with coffee, board games, and food adventuring.
I grew up in a home that was influenced by Christianity, but neither of my parents were practicing in any way. There was a general cultural acceptance of Christianity, but I can’t really remember going to church or having anything particularly Christian about our home. The one exception to this was my grandmother. She had been married to a pastor (he died long before I was born), and was a consistent Christian witness. Because of my parents’ work, my grandmother had a very large part in raising me, and I even lived with her for a year or so.
Continue reading “Testimony of the Week: Daniel Stevens”
written by Anna Cheung
Grandpa did not look too bad when I went back home for summer break. He was pretty stiff, but he could still sort of walk with his cane; he was still feisty and sharp. Yet, every time I saw him, he got worse. Red rashes climbed up his chest. Movement became difficult and painful. I lifted his legs out of the car for doctor visits, pulled him up to stand, squatted to help him sit. Eventually, he couldn’t walk anymore. Then he fell due to extreme muscle fatigue and was hospitalized.
His symptoms worsened. The blood tests came back negative. Google only created more unease and questions. After two months of confusion, fear, and frustration, the doctors diagnosed him with terminal lung cancer.
Continue reading “The Weight of Our Souls”
Friday Night Devotional by Will Chen, 4/15/16
Truth is objective. We believe this wholeheartedly as Christians. The Word of God is intrinsically true and needs no additional validation for its veracity. We must have this conviction as we are inundated with worldly opinions, especially at a college campus. But how is it that truth actually affects our lives? Is it enough to know bible verses, doctrine, and theology? Is the sum of the Christian life simply knowing about the objective truths of Scripture?
Continue reading “Firm Convictions”
written by Annie Zeng
Towards the end of fall quarter, a series of events led me to realize that in my pride I had forgotten how lowly I was in the light of God and His holiness. As a result, one of my new year’s resolutions was to identify three specific moments that I had sinned during the day, confess them to the Lord in prayer, and ask for His forgiveness. My goal was to remind myself of my own sinfulness by becoming more aware of it. To me, it had become too easy to only say that I was sinful, and I thought that forcing myself to recognize concrete ways that I had sinned throughout each day would help me to really believe it again.
Continue reading “Grace Greater Than All Our Sin”
Friday Night Devotional by Tim Ushijima, 4/8/2016
“The next day he [John the Baptist] saw Jesus coming to him and said, ‘Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!’” (John 1:29). This is such a simple phrase but the enormity of it is staggering.
Continue reading “Behold, the Lamb who Takes Away our Sin”
written by Ethan Lew
One fine Monday morning, I was reading Exodus 32 with a steaming mug of milk tea in one hand when I nearly spat out my tea. “So they gave it to me, and I threw it into the fire, and out came this calf.” Did Aaron actually expect Moses to believe this pathetic explanation of how the Israelites succumbed to idol-making?
Moses was only gone for forty days on Mount Sinai to meet with Almighty God, and he came back down to find a pitiful golden calf? This whole scenario was ridiculous. I mean, Aaron essentially said that he threw some earrings into a fire, and out popped this fully-formed shiny cow. I literally laughed out loud. I was in the middle of relating my version of these events to my housemate, when my rant suddenly faltered. A new thought had silenced me.
How do our excuses for sin sound like to God?
Continue reading “Excuses, Excuses, Excuses…”