Saturday, October 24, 2009

A Tip on How to Effectively Memorize Verses

When I was in 4th grade, I won Best Speller of the year. If a human resource manager would interview me for a job and ask me what the greatest accomplishment in my life is, I’d probably say, “Becoming the Best Speller when I was in 4th grade.”

I wasn’t one of the top students in class but my English teacher picked me for the spelling competition anyway. I was nervous. I’d never entered an academic competition before. The competition droned on and scores were tight. I ended it when I spelled ‘kayak’ correctly and won one point ahead of the rest. I walked out of the school library a bit shaking. Did I just win? I could not believe it. I returned to my room and my classmates asked what happened in the competition. Someone asked if I won. I nodded and everyone cheered.

They asked if I’ve memorized the dictionary. No, I didn’t. I just happened to read ‘kayak’ a few days back and looked it up in the dictionary.

Ten years later, people still ask if I memorize the dictionary. No, I don’t. I still commit spelling errors at times with the most common words. While I don’t memorize the dictionary, I do read it occasionally. It wasn’t because I wanted to win that I won.  I just wanted to be a good speller.

Well, what does this post got to do with memorizing verses? Oh well, I just thought that it runs the same way when we memorize verses. Most Christians brought up in church, if not all, were brought up memorizing verses so we can have special rewards. While that may be an effective motivation to memorize, it isn’t giving the reward that our spirit craves.

I’ve noticed recently too, that many Christians who’ve read Do Hard Things have included “Memorizing Verses” in their list of Hard Things. It is good that memorizing verses have captured them because of Do Hard Things but it isn’t good to memorize just for the sake of doing something hard.

I’ve memorized a lot of verses but it isn’t because I want to accomplish a hard thing. I just want to know Jesus more.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

"End of the Spear" (Missons Week)

Worship Team leads in praising the Lord

Watched End of the Spear and shed many a tear.

Played a game. We had to close our eyes and shout out a phrase or sing a song to find our teammates.

Debriefing time. We talked about what stood out to us from the movie. This eventually led to talking about people we were in conflict with. Although the Aucas were the tribesmen who had murdered their husbands, the wives of this men chose to minister to the people.

Monday, October 05, 2009

The Urgency of the Great Commission (Messiah College Missions Week)

First day of "Step Out! Stand Out!"—our college's Missions Week. We started with prayer for the Christians around the world, missionaries, church elders; prayer for unreached people groups, countries which have never yet heard of the Gospel; nations, governments, authorities, etc.

Our president, then, called to our attention the importance of the Great Commission:

"Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."
Matthew 28:18-20

As Christians, we are missionaries to the people we meet everyday. They may be our neighbors, our classmates, relatives, friends, acquaintances...and they all need to hear the Gospel. It doesn't matter where you are; you are called to be a missionary. As the song The Mission says: "...across the street or around the world, the mission's still the same: proclaim and live the truth in Jesus' Name."

In the afternoon, we watched Beyond the Gates of Splendor. Most of us have heard about them—Jim Elliot and his companions (Nate Saint, Pete Fleming, Roger Youderian, and Ed McCully)—but this movie provided fresh insight to the story and a deeper meaning of the Great Commission. Through the stories and the testimonies of the wives, we were able to hear how these young men found their passion in the field of missions and shared their dream of reaching the Auca tribe.

We had the opportunity to hear from students as well. These are our graduating batch. They went to Cambodia during the summer for a short-term cross-cultural mission trip. They shared their experiences (eating delicacies such as spiders and crickets, visiting cultural museums, going to a park where the walkway is paved with silver, meeting missionaries who work and give so much and have no one to really help them, yet continuing in the work for the glory of God) and what the trip made them realize.

We also heard from the head of the youth missions department of a church. He shared to us how God called him, as well as the challenges he and his team have experienced. He also shared about God's goodness and faithfulness even in the most difficult situations.

"I have but one passion - it is He, it is He alone. The world is the field and the field is the world; and henceforth that country shall be my home where I can be most used in winning souls for Christ."
Count Zinzindorf


Thursday, October 01, 2009

Self-control... wait, I got to check Facebook before I post this

There, I finally got to post this.

But then just after you've opened this page you took several detours first just like I did before getting to see this video. Like any other teen, you probably checked another web page to "maximize your time" while our blog's page is loading. You must have checked Twitter, Facebook, email, Skype, a friend's blog, or done a personality quiz. You also probably have 6 tabs open in one window. Or 6 tabs in each possible Internet window you have opened.

And there, the video is done loading. You watch or maybe not. You'll just listen while checking another page. Make no more detours, this video is worth your time. Watch and listen.