Running the Race His Way

Sometimes in life, the hurdles can seem to high

God's word encourages us to keep on pressing on despite obstacles and trials....He is right there with us!

1 Cor. 9: 23-27
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into stric training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we
do it to get a crown that will last forever.
26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly;
I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.

27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so
that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Philippians 2: 13 - 17
...for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, "children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation." Then you will shine
among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to
the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day
of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.

17 But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering
on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am
glad and rejoice with all of you.

Hebrews 12: 1 - 3
1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud
of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the
sin that so easily entangles.

And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.

For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

What's In A Name?

The pastor at the church we attend here in Davao preached on that this past Sunday.
God often changed a person's name when He called them - Abram to Abraham, Sarai to Sarah, Jacob to Israel,...

....even in John 15:15 he no longer calls us servants but friendsI no longer call you servants, because a servant does not knowhis master's business. Instead, I have called you friends

Imagine....Friends with Jesus.....
Let that truth sink in deeply.

Do you have a good friend? Someone you can talk to and share your heart with? Someone to go out for coffee with, or shopping, or hunting, or whatever interest you and your friend share.

It is an awesome, amazing, deeply life changing transition to realize Jesus calls me His friend. I am deeply humbled and thankful to be friends with Jesus.

"A friend is someone who stays with you in the bad weather of life, guards you when you are off your guard, restrains your impetuosity, delights in your wholeness, forgives your failures, does not forsake you when others let you down..The Friendship of Jesus enables us to see others as he saw the apostles: flawed but good, wounded healers, children of the Father."Brennan Manning


Friends of ours were married this weekend.

Filipino weddings tend to involve many people

Kurt was asked to be a principle sponsor. As such, he signed the marriage license as an official witness.

Kurt and Pastor James - two of the principle sponsors

Kurt and best man (known as a secondary sponsor), Joebert

Beyond the usual bridal party, the Filipino wedding involves people who are also significant in the couple's life: the Principal Sponsors and the Secondary Sponsors.
Principal Sponsors are also known as Ninang and Ninong. These are people whom the bride and groom respect & admire. .... In the Philippines, they are the official witnesses of the state and they sign the marriage license. Worldwide, their participation is symbolic of the wisdom & support they shall offer the new couple.....
(info from:

Lechon is a traditionally served food for parties, weddings,
and celebrations of many types.

The guy sponsors

Filipino Weddings reflect the strong traditions of family (& extended family) and symbolism. Thus, Filipino wedding ceremonies typically involve many people, and the wedding rituals typically "speak" to the couple personally.
read more about Filipino wedding traditions at

What's In A Name - Part 2

Beth Marie Gatchalian

Beth was born July 3, 2008. She was named after me and a dear life-long family friend of Jocy's (who was also the doctor who delivered Beth!)

She is growing into a fine young girl and was a joy to watch at the wedding this weekend!

I pray she continues to grow in wisdom and grace; seeking first HIM in all her ways. Her parents, Pastor James and Jocy, set a fine example for her.

Beth - "God is my oath" "House of God"
(depending on source referenced)

Marie - "Of the sea" "bitter" "derivative of Mary which means ..... ......"wished for child" ......"rebellious" ......"beloved"
(depending on source referenced)

True Poverty

As any of you know who follow this blog, I really like the writings of Brennan Manning. Today's devotional struck a chord with me and I decided to share it with you all. This is from his book "Reflections for Ragmuffins" January 22.

Poverty is not just physical - we see that daily here -

there is a poverty of heart - to be as a child - humble and relying on our blessed Saviour, Lord and Friend.

Jesus, my Brother and Lord, I pray as I write these words for the
grace to be truly poor before you, to recognize and accept
my weakness and humanness, to forgo the indecent
luxury of self-hatred, to celebrate your mercy and trust in your
power when I'm at my weakest, to rely on your love no matter
what I may do, to seek no escapes from my innate poverty,
to accept loneliness when it comes instead of seeking substitutes,
to live peacefully without clarity or assurance,
to stop grandstanding and trying to get attention,
to do the truth quietly without display,
to let the dishonesties in my life fade away,
to belong no more to myself, nor to desert my post when
I give the appearance of staying at it,
to cling to my humanity, to accept the limitations
and full responsibility of being a human being-really human
and really poor in Christ our Lord.

The Lord is good to those whose hope is in HIM, to the one
who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation
of the Lord. Lamentations 3: 25- 26