A Tight Grip on a Crumbling World

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written by Emily Chois

For the longest time, I told myself to study hard for the glory of God. After all, He gave me this chance to study at a school I didn’t even think I was worthy of going to. I was going to improve my grades, my GPA and get into optometry school so that God can be glorified in how I stewarded my future. And that’s exactly what I did for the past year and a half. Serving on music team and being in small group, I studied heartily. However, my grades weren’t reflecting my effort, and I needed to try harder, because with more time, my grades would theoretically improve. I knew I had a limited brain capacity that God ordained, that may be more limited than others around me. But I thought I’d be able to counter that by increasing my time in school and improve my grades so I could simply pass my classes. Slowly, I began to drop things. I served less and less on music team, decided to be discipled by a staffer (and not join an undergrad small group), and chose to not lead small group this fall. Now, I had maximum time to study for His glory, and steward my primary responsibility as a student. Although the circumstances weren’t favorable because I wanted to serve more, studying so I didn’t get kicked out of my major was of utmost importance.

These things seemed good.

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Testimony of the Week: Michael Lin

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Michael is a sophomore at UCLA studying biochemistry. He likes playing soccer, blasting k-pop in his room, and pretending to be good at basketball. Michael enjoys rap and beat-boxing but can only do the latter.

My parents used to always tell me how auspicious it was that I was born under the light of the full moon. This was before they came to America, before they were saved. I was born in China, into a typical Chinese family that celebrated luck and superstition. However, God sovereignly drew my parents to the States where they would eventually become Christians. Once I moved to California at the age of five, I found out that my parents, who had already been living in the States for two years, had been going to church. Every Sunday my parents would take me to Church even though I really didn’t want to go. Because I didn’t grow up speaking English, making close friends was difficult. Being an only child back then did not help either. Church was merely a place where nicely dressed adults would read me picture books.

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God is Worthy

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written by Davin Hau

In this post I’d like to examine this simple statement: God is worthy.  The reason I chose to look into this truth because I firmly believe we can glorify God better when we see His immeasurable worth more clearly.  We glorify God through the decisions we make, when our priority in making decisions is to honor God.  All our decisions boil down to this very straightforward question: “Is this worth it?”  We may not consciously ask ourselves this question, but our choices reflect what we deem to be worthy.  A quick example would be my choice to sleep early on Saturday night so that I stay awake during sermons on Sunday morning.  In this case, I am choosing to prepare my mental state so I can better focus on the preaching of the Word of God on Sunday morning, over studying or entertainment late Saturday night.  However, it would be very difficult for me to choose God over something else if I simply don’t recognize His worth.   So if we are to glorify God through the decisions we make, we must see his superior worth to everything else in order to choose that which would glorify him.

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Testimony of the Week: Jeremy Wong

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Jeremy is currently a first year at UCLA, studying Business Economics. His hobbies include drinking boba, playing acoustic guitar, and playing basketball. He also enjoys meeting new people and trying new things (like food).

Growing up in a Christian family was both a blessing and a stumbling block for me in my earlier years. The concept of God’s grace was an extremely foreign idea to me, and was something that I took for granted for the majority of my lifetime.

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Actively Pursuing Christ

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written by Lily Choi

Lily graduated from UCLA as an English major in 2015. She is currently studying for a J.D. at Harvard Law school. She enjoys reading, writing, and anything Korean. (안녕하세요!)

One of my principal worries when I moved to Cambridge, Massachusetts was the loss of my Christian community. GOC had been an instrumental part of my life and my faith during my time at UCLA. I imagined that starting over, making new friends, joining a new Christian group, and establishing accountability would take time and effort. I imagined that it would be hard.

For the most part, I think my fears have been realized.

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Testimony of the Week: Elkana Chan

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Elkana is a sophomore studying applied math and enjoys making good use of her swipes on other people. She also enjoys journaling, studying Cantonese, and observing the world around her in her free time.

I remember hearing the Parable of the Lost Sheep in church for the first time as a young child, and having difficulty understanding it. As it tells of a shepherd leaving his 99 sheep to seek out his single lost sheep, I, considering myself righteous, didn’t understand why it affirmed that there would be “more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance” (Luke 15:7). I believed I had always known God, and didn’t think I had sinned apart from occasionally lying or disobeying parents or adults, so I didn’t understand my need for true repentance because my sin separated me from God.

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The Myth of Head Knowledge

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written by Grant Gates

Christian speakers often talk about the difference between head knowledge and heart knowledge. The difference, we are told, is between facts and theories comprehended by the intellect and understandings that affect our emotions and actions. This distinction is presented as a dichotomy. One should avoid piling up too much head knowledge without also acquiring heart knowledge; head knowledge must be allowed to sink to the heart. How one does so is left as an exercise for the reader, with a hint indicating that maybe one should pursue application, and maybe the Bible and prayer are involved. There is, however, a simple solution: the dichotomy is false, because its premise is as well.

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Testimony of the Week: Minsoo Kim

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Minsoo is a third year political science major! He likes basketball, Kobe Bryant, Brian McKnight and Korean stuff. His favorite thing to do is to sing Brian McKnight songs in a Korean accent while playing basketball like Kobe.

O Father, I thank thee that in fullness of grace
thou hast given me to Jesus, to be his sheep,
jewel, portion;
O Jesus, I thank thee that in fullness of grace
thou hast accepted, espoused, bound me;
O Holy Spirit, I thank thee that in fullness of
grace thou hast
exhibited Jesus as my salvation,
implanted faith within me,
subdued my stubborn heart,
made me one with him for ever. (The Valley of Vision, The Trinity)

I was born in Korea to a nonbelieving family. When I was around 4, my brother started going to a nearby church to play basketball with his neighborhood friends, and my family naturally started to accompany him. Shortly afterwards in 2001, my parents decided to immigrate to the United States.

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Testimony of the Week: Patrick Gonzalvo

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Patrick is a second year political science and economics major aspiring to be a lawyer. He enjoys movies (maybe minor), music, reading, and Arsenal Football Club.

I was raised in a Catholic household in the small island of Guam which is located in the Pacific Ocean. My parents and their parents have all been part of the Catholic Church for generations. Growing up they would bring my brother, sister, and I to the Catholic Church. The church focused on the idea that if you do good works you could go to heaven and that you can be absolved from your sins if you confess them to the priest. The only thing the priest would tell you to do was to recite a prayer a couple of times and you would be “forgiven” for the sins you committed.

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Heart Aflame: You Just Need to Obey

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written by Dr. Steven J. Lawson

Can you imagine a Christian couple actually praying about living together before marriage? Can you fathom a young woman, who professes Christ, even bothering to pray about whether she should marry an unbeliever? Can you grasp a Christian businessman having to pray about whether he should tell the truth in a transaction? When the word of God is so clear, praying to discern God’s will becomes a convenient excuse—or even a prolonged filibuster—to avoid doing what the Scripture commands.

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