My story for His glory. ♡

18 Feb

I was raised in a family who believes that salvation is based on having a religion and doing good works. I delight in practicing rituals because I thought this will make me right before the Lord.

I was still in gradeschool when my family moved into a place where most of our neighbors are my relatives. During this time, I had a male cousin who was just few years older than me who molested me repeatedly. I was so innocent back then that I didnt know that what he was doing is a form sexual harassment. What I do know was that I felt disgusted, unclean and ashamed. I felt so many emotions that just made me hate myself. I did not have the courage to tell any members of my family because I was so afraid of rejection. I was just blaming myself the whole time. I dont exactly remember when did my cousin stopped abusing me however,  because of that experience,  my physical,  emotional,  mental and spiritual aspects suffered deeply.

I felt unloved knowing that not even my parents were able to protect me. My parents both manages our business wherein they would wake up very early in the morning to go to our grocery store and would come very late in the evening. It also causes me to be exposed in watching movies with sexual content whenever I watch television in our house or in our neighborhoods. My mind was corrupted with lustful thoughts even at a very young age which leads me to commit sin against my body.

Though my parents were busy, they are the ones who taught us about Jesus. We learned how to pray from our father and my mother and I always went to church every Sunday.

However, even though I prayed to Jesus, there are times when I doubted His existence because of His silence from all my sufferrings.

Apart from having a unpleasant childhood experience, I also suffered bullying from my gradeschool classmates. I had a severe mosquito allergies that causes my skin to get swelling and redness then became dark circular scars all over my legs and arms. My classmates would make fun of me by calling names and send nasty messages towards me. I kept all the painful emotions to myself because I thought no one would really care and understand me. I became more unhappy, anxious, insecure and over sensitive because of these.

At a very young age, I felt the need to be liked and accepted. That’s why I studied very hard and was a consistent honor student during gradeschool and was one of the selected aspirant students in the top class section during my entire highschool years.

I also became very active in serving our local Church and I was the only one who was awarded as a Lector of the Year when I graduated in Highschool. This award was given to a chosen student who consistently serve the church by reading the Liturgy (word of God) during Sunday Masses. I thought I was pleasing God wholeheartedly but later did I realize that I also had a selfish motive which was to impress the people around me. I became self-righteous and proud.

I read the Bible only when I am infront of the crowd but in realilty, I did not make time to understand the word of God when I am left alone in my room with Him. Hence, I value impressing other people than having a personal relationship with Christ.

It was during college that God started to plant seeds in my heart. I met a friend who is a genuine follower of Christ. I recognized how she really love God the way she loves the people around her. She was kind, gentle, patient and would share verses from the Bible. That was the time that I started to seek God.

After I graduated in college, I move to Cebu to start earning money and to be independent from my parents. In 2015,  two years after I started working, I  was so worried about my direction in life and I prayed to God to reveal my life’s purpose.

My prayers were answered when a friend invited me to a Sunday CCF service. I was drawn and keep coming back every Sunday because I learned a lot from the messages that were preached. I eventually joined a dgroup (discipleship group) in the same year to help me grow spiritually. In one of our dgroup session, our leader explained to us the consequence of sinning against God and the solution on how one can be truly saved.

In Romans 3:23, it says “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” And in Ephesians 2:8-9 it says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.”

God revealed to me the magnitude of my sins that separates me from His presence. I learned that having a religion and doing good works are not an assurance of going to heaven. We are saved only by believing in Him. Doing good works are just an overflow of our love for Him. We don’t need to serve to be saved. Rather, we are saved to served.

I then declared Jesus as my Lord and Savior and committed to follow Him. Or so I thought.

In 2017, my fellowship with God drifted when I entered into an relationship with a non-believer. He was the first guy who persistently pursued me and even though I know I was disobeying God, I did not stop communicating with him until he became my first boyfriend. When we were together, I struggled in the area of purity. I gave my heart, emotions, and even pieces of my physical purity. I was telling myself all the while that I was still “pure” because I hadn’t fallen off the cliff. But deep within my heart, I knew that I was not pleasing God.

This made me had a double life. I would go to church every Sunday, still active in our ministry and attend our discipleship Bible study but I continue falling into sin willingly. I neglected the truth that if you refuse Jesus as Lord, you cannot have Him as Savior.

There are nights that I doubted my salvation because of my disobedience. This was the lowest point of life. I was so anxious until I cried out to the Lord to rescue me from my sinful flesh so that the Holy Spirit can dwells in me.

God gave me the courage to finally let go of that relationship and ask the Lord for His forgiveness. In 1 John 1:9, it says “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.  ”

I recommitted myself to declare Jesus not only as a Savior but as the Lord of my life. I can’t thank Him enough for rescuing me and I praise Him because I was able to preserve myself for my future spouse.

Indeed, God refined the area of purity in my life. Spending time with Him, being part of a dgroup, and watching  online Christian videos helped me to heal from my brokenness.

Obeying God brings so much blessings in my life. He gave me opportunities to share the gospel to my parents and directed me to lead my own dgroup with single ladies. I am also able to pray, care and share God’s love to my friends and even to strangers. God also helped me forgive the people that hurt me in the past. In Ephesians 4:32, Apostle Paul says “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

As I look back, I cannot fathom how God was so patient with me and love me unconditionally.

In Romans 8:28 it says,  “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”
And in James  1:12, Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

But God is not finish with me yet. I am still a work in progress. There are still times when I fall into subtle sins like worldliness and sins of the tounge. Christianity is perfect but Christians are not. It is impossible to fully live the life pleasing to Him, but God promised us in Philippians 4:13 that we can do all things through Him who gives us strength.

I am Jean Lopina,  once empty, insecure,  and lost but now found by Jesus Christ our Lord and filled with the fullness of His unconditional love.

To Him be all the glory and honor and praise. 🌹💖

 

 

 

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Of Pursuit and Waiting

8 Oct

Source: Of Pursuit and Waiting

What does it mean to be a Proverbs 31 woman?

4 Sep

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We are doing something a little different, why don’t you read the “Points to Ponder” section at the bottom before delving into this post. Promise you won’t be disappointed!


The phrase being a “Proverbs 31 women” has been drilled into my head since I was a kid…and probably yours too. I grew up in a great home, with great parents and I was involved in my local church- so, I heard it often and I knew what it meant…sort of.

I will be 100 percent honest with you, I thought it was a standard that I couldn’t attain. I was never going to be good enough, I didn’t even understand what the chapter meant. I mean, what does it mean that she “seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands.” I thought it was an overused way to define women of God and it was the peak that I would never…

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LIFE: IT’S OKAY TO BE ALONE

20 Aug

Source: LIFE: IT’S OKAY TO BE ALONE

Chingus

21 Apr
“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
— C.S. Lewis 
This saying is so cliché yet so true. I am so blessed to have friends who are genuine and bring out the best in me. I cannot even imagine myself without them. ♡ No words will suffice to convey how grateful I am to have friends like what I have right now. And so without further adieu, lemme dedicate this post to my friends whom I love so much. ♥ ❤ ❥

 

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Love (Minus Me)

9 Sep

ARABY



 

           “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind – and love your neighbor as yourself.” Jesus gave us a pretty simple summary of Moses’ Ten Commandments. And I realized — it all starts back home.


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            For the first time in my life, I find myself busy doing preparations as I gear up for a short-term mission trip this October to the nation of Sri Lanka. These past few weeks of preparing and raising funds for this outreach, I’ve to be uncomfortably confronted by a very disarming issue – my own selfishness, and how it’s keeping me from fulfilling the two greatest commandments in the world.

            I can’t speak for everyone everywhere, but scattered in this world are people like me who are always “too busy” to be bothered for a favor. Too busy to give. Too busy to ask a word of…

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Here’s What’s Stopping You from Living in the Moment

4 Aug

Let the past teach you. Let the future compel you. Love, appreciate, and enjoy today for what it is – there will never be another one like it.

Source: Here’s What’s Stopping You from Living in the Moment