Healing Grace

All of us have problems, insecurities, deep-seated emotional wounds and hidden scars. Emotional hurts, most often than not, is caused by rejection – from our parents, siblings, friends, co-workers, and these feeling tears us apart. God’s grace does not begin and end in our salvation, it rounds up from easing our guilt, to sustaining us to our daily life, to healing our wounded heart. So how does He do it? By changing the way we think. We feel rejected because we base our feelings on the approval of other people. God wants us to do otherwise; He wants us to see ourselves the way He looks at us.

1. We are Acceptable. In everything we do, we go the extra mile just to fit in. Bad news is, whatever we do people will always find fault in us, even Jesus, in His perfection, was criticized. But God says we are acceptable, because His love and acceptance is not based on performance, but on His grace.

2. We are Valuable. There are 2 factors that determine the worth of an object – who owns it, and how much the owner paid for it. The minute we accepted God in our lives, we are His. And since Jesus Christ paid for our sins with His life, we cost not just a million bucks but all of God’s fortune. So when people say we are not worthy, they are lying because our value is immeasurable, for God gave up Jesus, His most valued treasure for you and for me.

3. We are Lovable. We are hurt by our loved ones’ inconsistencies and neglect. We are scared with the thought of love fading away because of uncontained needs. It is because we have the wrong notion of ourselves being undeserving, unlovable. But God looks at us differently. He sees us as important and as lovable, warts and all, because His love is consistent and unconditional.

4. We are Forgivable. Sinners as we are, God does not hold grudges against us. Everyday we are laden with guilt that we choose to stay away from God and from others. We may have committed the gravest sin but no offense is unforgivable. For as long as you are sorry and confess to Him that loves you, you will be forgiven, for if this is not true the passion of the Christ will be useless. Jesus came not to condemn us, and judgment is only for those who reject Christ. So when we are laid down with guilt, all we have to do is look at the cross and see Jesus’ outstretched arms ,He did it so you would come.

5. We are Capable. Our insecurities are often caused by what is dictated by the people around us. We believe them because they are important to us. If only we’ll make Jesus the most important person in our life it will be His words that will matter most; and He is saying that He has given us talents and gifts for us to be sufficient in what we do, He gave us the Holy Spirit to guide our choices, and His grace sustains us everyday to give us what we need.

There are no shortcuts in healing, but we can start with a small step – A small step towards God is a big leap in our life. Get to know God, have a chat, until you realize that you’re no longer hurting, but smiling with His friendship.

Summarized by Joyce Gamboa
Grace Place celebrates every Sunday, 10:30 am at Tiara Oriental Hotel, Makati City. For inquiries, questions and directions to the location, please text GRACEPLACE <your name> <your message> to 2299.
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Sustaining Grace

God did not just save us, He also would like to sustain us with His grace throughout our lives. Sustaining Grace is the thing that keeps us going when you want to quit; The bible tels us that life here on Earth will be difficult, but alongside with this is an assurance that He will be with us,no matter what happens. This is His sustaining grace.
There are three stumbling blocks of life where we will need His grace the most.

1. Temptations. When you are torn between moral choices of doing what is good and what makes you feel good, you are being tempted. Temptations in itself is not a sin…yet. It’s like birds, you can’t stop them from flying over your head, but you can do something so they won’t build up a nest in your head. It will always be the Devil’s business to tempt us, because the moment we turn our heads to his deceitful promises, we are his. But be rest assured that God won’t allow it. For as long as we trust Him, the Holy Spirit will guide and strengthen us to go out of that situation. Just like a shepherd leading his flock out of the dark cave, God’s sustaining grace will give us the power to overcome temptations.

2. When we are tired. Most people doesn’t want to go through the difficulties of life, rather, they want to live life the easy way. It is really tiring to stay honest when everybody around you is stealing; it is draining to be polite to someone who is rude. It is because Christianity is not hard, it is impossible. Impossible, that is if we try to do it on our own. But if we place the holy spirit in our hearts and trust God’s grace,we can stand firm for Christ. Having Jesus work with us and through us will sustain us with energy when we are tired to do His will. It will enable us to do what is right, let alone be different from everybody. It will recharge us to continue to do what is right…even if there’s nobody looking.

3. Troubles. Problems are inevitable. No one is spared to go through life problem-free, not even King David. The good news is, through God’s grace, these problems draw us closer to God, it force us to look to God and depend on Him more. If we concentrate too much on a problem it weighs us down, but if we focus on Jesus and what He can do in our lives we’ll be at rest. Isa. 41:10 says, “So don’t worry, because I’m with you. Don’t be afraid, because I am your God. I will make you strong and will help you; I will support you with my right hand that saves you. Trusting in God’s promises we can now declare that our problems are big, but our God is bigger.

Earth is not heaven, and God in His great mercy doesn’t want us to suffer senselessly while waiting for Him. His grace augments what we have in lacking. In accepting this we can now trust God when we are being tempted, praise Him even when we are weary, and thank Him in spite of pain.

Summarized by Joyce Gamboa
Grace Place celebrates every Sunday, 10:30 am at Tiara Oriental Hotel, Makati City. For inquiries, questions and directions to the location, please text GRACEPLACE <your name> <your message> to 2299.
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GRACE PLACE: Serve God by Serving Others

We were created different from one another because God has a plan for each one of us. And it is for this purpose that we were given our own SHAPE – Spiritual Gifts, Heart (Passion), Abilities, Personality, Experiences. It is essential for us to know and develop our gifts so that we can contribute to life and be useful to His service. We should discover the boundaries of our talents so that we can function accordingly to God’s plan for us. And then we can give back to God all the blessings and love He gave us. He deserves our best. For this we make service our 4th value in life. We call it Ministry.

God showed us the perfect example of service and ministry when He sent Jesus to dwell with us. Jesus in all His glory came to serve us- from His first miracle in Cana, to His countless healing sessions, marathon counsellings with the lowest class of the society, not to mention his non-stop seminars, up to His cross in Golgotha, He showed us how service goes hand in hand with love. God wants this kind of service from us, but doing so doesn’t mean we have to die on the cross as well.

Serving like Jesus means being Available. This means allowing God to work through us anytime,even if it will mean messing up our schedules, without being resentful. Helping a brother in need is an opportunity for us to be of service to God, so why not seize the moment. Ignoring someone in need may be caused by :

a) Self centeredness. If we focus so much on ourselves,we sin. Also,we forget that we were saved for service, that we have a purpose to fulfill.

b) Perfectionism. In the bible, God did not use perfect people because there’s not one existing.

c) Materialism. We cannot serve both God and money. We should invest our riches to God, for what is essential is invisible to the eye.

Serving like Jesus means being Grateful. Jesus cost him His life to buy our salvation. This truth makes our service to God more significant, for we serve Him not out of guilt or obligation, but out of the richness of our heart and deepness of our gratitude. In our service to God we practice the audience of one.

Serving like Jesus means being Faithful. Jesus kept His faith while being persecuted until He finished His task of saving us. Serving others is never easy. But we do not quit in serving the Lord. Hardships and discouragement will always be there but we will remain faithful and run our race to the finish line.

There’s a Danish proverb that says, “What you are is God’s gift to you; what you do with yourself is your gift to God”. In the end, God will not ask us how many gifts we have developed, but rather how many brothers have we helped with our gifts. He will not look on how much you have gained in this life, but how much you have given up for His service.

Summary by Joyce Gamboa
Grace Place celebrates every Sunday, 10:30 am at Tiara Oriental Hotel, Makati City. For inquiries, questions and directions to the location, please text MSG GRACEPLACE <your name> <your message> to 2948 for GLOBE and SUN and 3940 for Smart subscribers.

How to respond to “The Da Vinci Code”

With the book being the latest best seller and the movie coming on May, Dan Brown’s “The Da Vinci Code” will sure rock the boat in a few months time. I predict that this will be the talk of the town come May. People will be talking about the accuracy, or inaccuracy, of Brown’s claims. Will you be ready to answer the questions?

Here are some great tips on how to start or response to a Da Vinci Code conversation from Pastor.com.

Grace Place Podcast

You can follow Grace Place week after week through Podcast.

What is a Podcast?
To put it simply, a Podcast is an audio file, in our case, a recording of our sermons, along with a way to subscribe to the sermons and have them automatically delivered to your iPod when you plug synchronize it with iTunes or simply through your PC or mp3 players. The sermon isn’t live, so you can listen to it whenever you want.

How do I get a Podcast?
We recommend using iTunes which is available for both the Mac and the PC. The latest version of iTunes, version 4.9, supports podcasting. One you have updated or installed iTunes 4.9, you will need to add Grace Place’s Podcast to iTunes. To add Grace Place’s Podcast, Choose

How do I customize the Podcast?
To set the frequency iTunes checks for new subscription podcast episodes, choose Edit > Preferences and click Podcasts. Then choose an option from the “Check for new episodes” pop-up menu. To set the number of subscription podcast episodes iTunes automatically downloads, choose Edit > Preferences and click Podcasts. Then choose an option from the “When new episodes are available” pop-up menu. If you choose “Do nothing,” new episodes appear dimmed in the Podcasts playlist. You must click the Get button next to the episode to download it.

Graceplace Podcast Screensh