I Am Gabriel: A Messenger of Hope

I am Gabriel

I Am Gabriel: A Messenger of Hope

Life’s challenges bring us to a test of faith. With hope gone, we would instead find refuge elsewhere than look into a silver lining where we are. This film brings a message of hope for those overwhelmed by problems.

The story began with the couple Ellen and Joe losing a child at birth. They were heartbroken. In a small town of Promise, people believed this incident started a curse of drought to their lands resulting in poor business conditions, unemployment, and foreclosure of homes. They have become hopeless that some even considered leaving town to have a job. These forms of suffrage aren’t a far-fetched reality, and thus, the question of why do bad things happen to good people emerge.

Out of nowhere, a boy named Gabe arrives in Promise with just the clothes on his back and a rolled prayer mat in tow. He was on the road when Joe, driving with his wife Ellen, almost hit him. With no home or parents to go to, the couple took him in. They reported the matter to Sheriff Brody, then he searched online for a missing boy across neighboring towns but unable to find a lead as to where Gabe could come from. Meanwhile, Gabe took action on his divine mission, rousing faith in each person he talks to. He reinforces the power of prayer so that God will listen. The boy made it clear that relationship to God means talking to Him that many people often forget.

As the story unfolds, each character showed how they were dealing with their own struggles. Doc has been silent about his terminal illness, the pastor’s daughter was taking pills to cast aside her hurt, Sheriff scrambles to save everyone’s issues while unable to come to terms about his wife’s death and his friend turns to alcohol due to depression that he lost his job. These people lack encouragement for one another as much as each of them lacks self-encouragement. Gabe’s mission was to remind them how connected they are to each other and to God who will not forsake them amidst their troubles.

There are several tender moments in this film. One is when Gabe sits beside Wesley, a young man with Down’s syndrome. Amazingly, he knew who Gabe really is. He sat on a bench outside the church expecting the boy to make it rain. True enough, the rain came to drench everyone with fresh hope.

The glimmer of hope turns to skepticism when Doc dies. Gabe’s presence was again deliberated among townsfolk. The sheriff pushed the matter further that led to Gabe finally revealing his identity for everyone to see and believe.

As it was written in Scriptures, Blessed are those who do not see and yet believed. We suffer not only due to lack of faith but lack of hope in believing that there’s a better tomorrow to look forward to. And this inspiring film illustrated the meaning of hope and the miracles it brings to those who believe.

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Practical Ways to Rule Over Your Emotions

Practical Ways to Rule Over Your Emotions

 Practical Ways to Rule Over Your Emotions

The Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to you, but you must rule over it.”

Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. – Genesis 4:6-8

Despite receiving a warning from God, Cain was still not able to overcome the heat of anger. Being unable to control his rage, he made the decision that led to the first ever murder incident in human history.

Who are we to frown on Cain, though? Even today, it is so easy to hastily deal with things that enrage us. When we are wronged or ridiculed, we can just recklessly do whatever we feel like doing.

Letting this happen, however, is dangerous. When we allow our hearts to be filled with rage and let ourselves lose our self-control, we are on our way to making dangerous decisions – ones that can even lead to our own destruction.

It is vital, therefore, for us Christians to intentionally change our attitude and rule over our emotions. Here are some practical ways to do that.

Suppress yourself from speaking hateful words

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. – Ephesians 4:29

Jesus warns us to be careful of what comes out of our mouths because we can defile ourselves not through the food that we eat, but the things that we say (Matthew 15:11). Before blurting out anything, remind yourself of your identity. You are a child of God, and God’s children speak with grace (Colossians 4:6).

Forget about getting vengeance

Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. – Leviticus 19:18

Discipline yourself to repay evil with good because that’s what God expects from us. He does not ask us to defend ourselves from wrongdoers. Instead, God tells us to trust Him and leave vengeance to His hands (Deuteronomy 32:35). To stay at arm’s length with the sin of hurting others, strive to do what is good for others (1 Thessalonians 5:15), regardless if they offend you.

Go immediately to God

But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. – John 14:26

Ask the Lord to remove the anger from your heart and replace it with patience. Take a moment to literally pause and pray. This way, you can be more sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s conviction on the right decision to make.

How do you respond when others mistreat you? Do you lose your temper? Do you act in haste? Do you make foolish decisions?  Whatever situation you’re in, God promises never to abandon you. Resolve to practice self-control. Don’t let rage take over. Remember, “a man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls” (Proverbs 25:28).

My God is Bigger than My Fears

The Bible

My God is Bigger than My Fears

Popular literature claims that we are living in an age of fear. Most of the lives we live influenced by fear. Fear of failing, fear of rejection, fear of being broke, fear of discomfort, and fear of defeat. Fear of even the smallest things.

Why do you keep staying where you are? Or why do you keep doing what you do? Why do you keep thinking the way you do?

Fear, according to the dictionary, is an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain or a threat. It is a mental state that overcomes our body and paralyzes it or pushes it to act within what is known, what is familiar, what is within your comfort zone.

In the parable of talents, the slave who buried the talents entrusted to him was in great fear. He was afraid of the potential dangers of cultivating and multiplying them. He was comfortable with the idea of the talents staying underground, safe from all of those who had evil plans on it. So when the master came back, the master was disappointed. We have a huge tendency to be like this slave.

If Our Father is the King of all Kings, then we’re all princes and princesses in Our Father’s kingdom! We are members of the highest royal family. What must we fear?

“Tell everyone who is discouraged, be strong and don’t be afraid! God is coming to your rescue…” Isaiah 35:4

In times that we are down, in times that we are afraid, in times that we feel small and insignificant when the Devil says “You can’t!” you must look up, for He is always, invariably, lovingly gazing at you. Just as a father wants all things good for his child. Have you ever seen a father who purposefully puts his child in danger?

May we all have the faith of a small child three to four years of age. Like a toddler taking his first ever steps in the world, we must have absolute confidence in all things that Our Lord has put before us – where certainty ends, faith begins.

Our fear of suffering and discomfort prevents us from partaking in the loving passion of Our Lord.

And every time we stumble, when we take a wrong step; when we follow the wrong path, and we end up falling into a dark pit of uncertainty, Our Lord Jesus Christ comes to our rescue and picks us up,  and urges us to try again. Most days we feel like our fears are so large, large enough to crush us and block that glimmer of hope from reaching us. We must think, “My God is bigger than my fears!”