Nahanap mo na ba ang One True Love mo?

Sa dinami-dami ng tao dito sa mundo, hindi mo alam kung nakilala mo na ang taong nakatakda para sa’yo. Kung nakausap mo na ba s’ya o nasilayan man lang, o di kaya’y nakasabay sa jeep o bus o tren. Ngunit sa libo-libong tao na makakasalamuha natin, may isa doon na magpapatibok ng puso mo – ang magpapatigil ng mundo mo, magpapabagal ng bawat minuto at kaisa-isang huhuli sa paningin mo.

Oooooops! Iyan ang whimsical version, of course.

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Isang libro ang humuli sa atensyon ko (the blog title is the book title as well), ibinigay sa akin ng isang mabuting kaibigan. Isinulat ito ni Bro. Bo Sanchez, isang inspirational speaker. At dahil sobrang dami kong natutunan matapos basahin ito, hayaan nyo akong ibahagi ang ilan sa mga ito.

8 Steps to Attract God’s Best for the Single Person:

Step #1: Maging responsable sa paghahanap ng iyong One True Love. When I read this book, maraming lumang paniniwala ang nabasag sa utak ko – as in marami. Pumasok kaagad sa utak ko ang linyang, ‘True love waits.’ Pero girl, kung maghihintay ka lang, uupo at walang gagawin – ni hindi makikipag-usap sa opposite gender, tingnan natin kung may darating nga ng basta-basta. Baka may forever – forever waiting. Lumabas ka rin sa iyong lungga.

Step #2: Alamin mo kung ano ang pumipigil sa’yo. Sabi ni Bo, identify your internal blocks and self-imposed prisons of fear. Kailangan mong alamin kung ano ba talaga ang gusto mo; mag-asawa o stay single, mga ayaw mo at mga pumipigil sa’yo kung bakit hindi ka pa pumapasok sa isang exclusive relationship.

Step #3: Talk to lots of guys. May na-realize lang ako na isang bagay matapos kong basahin ang step na ito; karamihan sa mga single kong kaibigan na nasa late 20s, early and late 30s na ay puro babae rin ang mga kaibigan at nakakausap o nakakasama nila on a daily basis. Matindi ang kanilang paniniwala na someone out there is meant for them; well, totoo naman. Pero paano nila ito makikilala? Marami sa kanila, ayon kay Bo, ay tatlong lugar lang ang pinupuntahan; office, bahay at prayer meeting. Expand your search area! Based on experience, though nasa early 20s pa lang naman ako, marami akong natututunan about guys through talking to lots of them.

Step #4: Lumabas ka on friendly dates hangga’t maaari. DATE is always a big word especially in a church setting. Sabi nga ni Bo, it is always perceived to as ‘romantic’. Personally, I go out to friendly dates from time to time. Hindi naman kasi palaging dalawa lang kayo, pwede ring group date. And besides, dating is not only for exclusive partners or those in a relationship. Kung hindi ka comfortable sa term na date, suggestion ni Bo is to call it chats over a cup of coffee.

Couple drinking coffee in cafe by Gable Denims on 500px

Step #5: Be attractive. Ito ang pinaka-paborito ko sa lahat ng steps na sinabi ni Bo (pero mas gusto ko talaga yung last). He included the top 11 attraction secrets. First, feel you’re beautiful. Sabi nga nila, what you think of yourself will also be the world’s perception of you – narinig/nabasa ko somewhere, nakalimutan ko lang kung saan galing o kung sino nagsabi. Self-explanatory naman, ‘di ba? Isipin mong maganda ka and the whole world will agree with you, and of course, vice versa. I’ll skip attraction secret 2, basahin nyo na lang sa libro. The third one is be happy. Simple lang. Makaka-attract ka kaya kung lagi kang nakasimangot? Fourth, be friendly. I always apply this one but I make it sure na genuine friendliness naman. Number 5 – uh, basahin nyo na lang din sa libro, same with 6 and 7. Moving on with eighth, be yourself. Hindi maganda if we give them a fake show. Show to people who we really are; our best self and don’t hide our flaws, we are not perfect. The ninth, sabi ni Bo, be as pretty as you can be. Pero dapat natural lang, hindi rin maganda na sobra ang kolorete sa mukha. Manamit rin ng kaaya-aya at kagalang-galang. Simplicity is beauty. Attraction secret 10 – secret. Again, basahin sa libro. Sure ako, matutuwa kayo lalo na sa mga examples ni Bo. The last attraction secret is for the men – be a real man!

Step #6: Alamin kung ano ang gusto mo sa isang asawa (because you get what you settle for). Warning: for mature singles only. Kung bata ka pa (tulad ko), huwag mo munang isipin ito. Sa mga mature singles, payo ni Bo ay mag-lista kayo ng non-negotiables ninyo ang stick with it!

Step #7: Enter into courtship. Paano ka magkakaroon ng exclusive relationship kung hindi ka naman magpapaligaw? (For the men – manligaw huwag puro paramdam; clarity of purpose) Kapag binasa nyo sa libro, may mga inilista pang mga actions si Bo. 😉

Step #8: Trust God and enjoy life. I will put the exact words written on the book:

  1. Bago mo pa gawin ang lahat ng makakaya mo, magtiwala ka sa Diyos.
  2. Habang ginagawa mo ang lahat ng makakaya mo, magtiwala ka sa Diyos.
  3. Pagkatapos mong gawin ang lahat ng makakaya mo, magtiwala ka sa Diyos.

Whatever you do, whatever happens, trust God. He is with you, always (Joshua 1:9). May naalala lang akong joke ng isang kaibigan:

Ano daw ang prayer ng isang single (woman) on her 20s? Lord, give me my perfect man.

E kapag on her 30s: Lord, give me my man.

On her 40s: Lord, give me naman.

And on her 50s: Lord naman!

Sorry, I don’t know if na-gets nyo o nakuha ko ng tama ang joke pero ganyan ang context. Anyway, God is not an ATM machine. Faith without action is dead sabi nga sa book of James. Our prayers should always be accompanied by actions and vice versa. So, that’s it. I encourage you to read the book. Marami kayong matututunan at mababasag na mga myth, swear. God bless, singles at nawa’y mahanap ninyo (natin) ang One True Love ninyo. Happy love month! ❤

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Lord, Why Can’t I Change?

By Charles F. Stanley

Have you ever vowed to put an ungodly habit behind you, only to fall again soon after? Feelings of guilt can lead to a renewed commitment to never do something again. But the very next day, the cycle repeats itself as we give in to the same temptations. Our defeat leaves us wondering, What’s wrong with me? Our despair at repeated failure produces a sense of hopeless resignation and confusion. We want to know, Lord, why can’t I change?

All of us have experienced the problem of wanting to honor God and yet reverting back to old, sinful ways almost immediately. Isn’t the Christian life supposed to be more liberating and victorious than this? After all, the Bible says, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Cor. 5:17). Why, then, does habitual sin take hold of us? Wasn’t Christ supposed to change all this? If we are new creations, why do we still act like old ones? We feel as stuck as a ship run aground.

So how do we shake free from our sinful behaviors? First, we need to examine the way change occurs in the Christian life. Salvation is an instantaneous work of God, which happens the moment we receive Jesus as Savior. But from that point on, we enter a continual process of transformation called sanctification. The Lord’s goal is to mold us into the image of Christ, but this process requires our cooperation. That’s what the Bible means when it says, “Work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil. 2:12). If we neglect this responsibility, we’ll find ourselves struggling with the same issues over and over again. But if we submit to the Holy Spirit, He’ll exert His influence in every area of our lives. Old sinful habits will pass away and be replaced with new godly behavior.

The path to transformation

Becoming the people God created us to be is an inside-out process. Because our thoughts govern each area of our lives—emotions, decisions, actions, attitudes, and words—any lasting transformation must begin with the mind. If all we want is to modify our conduct, we’ll never experience long-term success. What we need is a new way of thinking.

This can be accomplished only by what the Bible calls renewing the mind (Rom. 12:2). It’s not a sudden transformation but a lifelong process. At the moment of salvation, the Lord doesn’t erase all our negative and sinful thought patterns any more than He automatically removes our physical imperfections. If you had a scar on your arm before you received Christ, most likely you will still have it afterward.

We are all a reflection of whatever we’ve been thinking throughout the years. From early on, we are taught to respond to situations in a certain way, with a particular response pattern, and this impacts every area of our lives. In some cases, we can see how people’s expressions reveal the way their minds have developed throughout their lifetime—etching continuous worry, pain, and guilt on their faces.

Take a look in the mirror. Do you see the joy of Christ in your eyes? Or are the destructive effects of sin betrayed by your appearance? The good news is that whatever your thoughts have been in the past, God can teach you to think differently. He gives His Spirit to lead you through a process that produces real healing and lasting change.

Where thoughts originate

So, what triggers negative thought patterns? The Lord has given us physical senses so we can interact with each other and our world. The capacity to see, hear, touch, taste, and smell is an amazing gift from God, which affects how our thoughts develop and what we think. However, because we are continually being influenced by the fallen world around us, we don’t always use these abilities in a way that honors Him. We experience a sight, sound, smell, flavor, or touch that gives us momentary pleasure and we begin to think, What would it be like if I…? This begins the downward spiral—our senses trigger thoughts, which elicit destructive patterns of behavior.

James 1:14-15 explains, “Each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.” That is why we must be discerning about what we listen to and watch. It is also why the apostle Paul tells us to lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted, and instead be renewed in the spirit of our minds—to put on the new self which is created in God’s likeness (Eph. 4:22-24).

A second source of sinful thoughts is from the Enemy of our souls. Have you ever been thinking about some plan or task, only to have a vile, ungodly idea pop into your mind? You may wonder, Where did that come from? These are Satan’s attempts to distract us with his ideas and twist the truth, inciting us to disobey God. His purpose is to destroy our character and lead us astray.

The way we respond determines whether we fall to his enticements or stand strong against him. Will we, as Paul says, dwell on “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute” (Phil. 4:8), allowing our minds to be transformed by these things? Or will we take the bait?

No matter how our minds are bombarded by unwanted temptations, we must remember that as believers, we do not have to be enslaved by sin. We are not helpless victims, but sons and daughters of almighty God. We have within us the Holy Spirit—a positive, powerful influence that is mightier than the Enemy can ever hope to be. Because we are indwelled by God’s Spirit, we have the power to extinguish the Enemy’s flaming arrows (Eph. 6:16). We are also able to know the mind of Christ, take our thoughts captive to Him, and have victory over every temptation.

How your mind is renewed

God calls us to be watchful and guard our minds at all times. If we don’t, worldly values and purposes will subtly creep in and influence our lives. Whenever we allow ourselves to be conformed to the world, the Enemy gains a foothold in our thinking. And the more we yield to those thoughts, the stronger his hold becomes.

We must wisely choose which thoughts we will accept and which ones we’ll reject. It’s not enough just to resist the Enemy’s lies; we must also deliberately fill our mind with truth from God’s Word. Jesus used this technique when Satan tempted Him in the wilderness (Matt. 4:1-11). He countered each challenge with Scripture, saying “It is written . . .” When we are ready with a verse that refutes one of Satan’s falsehoods, we have the most powerful spiritual ammunition possible.

So consider: How diligent have you been about guarding your mind? Have you permitted the world to influence your thoughts? Or are you allowing God’s Word to shape your reasoning and values? You cannot coast through the Christian life. An unengaged mind is an open invitation for sin. If you’re distracted, having trouble praying or reading the Bible, your thoughts are not where they should be.

Perhaps you feel as if you’re the rope in a tug of war between God and sin, constantly being pulled in two opposing directions. Don’t beat yourself up when you fail. Rather, confess and repent as quickly as possible (1 John 1:9). During those times, remember that you are engaged in a long process, and that you cannot renew your own mind. Trying harder and making promises to God will only discourage you, because in your own strength, you will never be able to change. True transformation is the work of the Holy Spirit—and it takes time. Therefore, submit to His leading, heed His warnings, and obey His voice.

Four Requirements for a Renewed Mind

Fill your mind with Scripture—focusing on the Lord’s character, ways, and commands.
Resist temptation and flee from it by understanding the thoughts and feelings that trigger a sinful response in you.
Check the source of your thoughts—are they from God, your flesh, the world, or Satan?
Rely on the Holy Spirit to empower you to resist sin and break free from its bondage.
Begin today

As believers, we can expect this process of transformation to continue until we reach heaven; however, the important issue is that we begin today.

Just as your area of struggle began with one act of yielding to temptation, so your path to victory can begin with one act of submission to God. Through the power of the Spirit, start saying no to thoughts that don’t belong in a believer’s life. At the same time, say yes to appropriate thoughts. When you fill your mind with truth from God’s Word, you’ll gain discernment and be able to more readily identify the thoughts and feelings that cause you to sin.

As you persevere in choosing which thoughts to allow, the bondage of sin will diminish and your mind will be renewed. This transformation, which began internally, will now be worked out externally as behavior changes. When you think right, you’ll act right. Areas of your life that you were powerless to adjust on your own will be refashioned. And Christ’s victorious life will be beautifully demonstrated through you so that others will see and be drawn to Him.

Questions for Further Study

Ephesians 4:22-24 gives three steps for change. What are they? Which words are used to describe the old self? The new self? How does renewing the mind enable us to “put on the new self”? What would happen if you skipped that step?

Read James 4:7-10. As you think about an area in your life that needs to change, what does God command you to do, and what does He promise to do in return?
You don’t have to fight your battles alone. Jesus Christ died on the cross to free you—mind, spirit, and body—from the grip of sin. And through the power of His resurrection, He offers an abundant new life in Him.

No transgression is too great for the Lord to forgive. Scripture tells us that if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive and cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Invite Jesus into your life, and let the transformation begin. You can use the following prayer or your own words:

Lord Jesus, I believe You are truly the Son of God. I confess that I have sinned against You in thought, word, and deed. Please forgive all my wrongdoing, and let me live in relationship with You from now on. I receive You as my personal Savior, accepting the work You accomplished once and for all on the cross. Thank You for saving me. Help me to live a life that is pleasing to You. Amen.