Sin, Instrument of Grace

Sin is a part of life one can’t get away with. It bring us down. Pride, Lust, Greed, Glutton, Envy, Wrath and Sloth. Those are just few from untold sins we experience in our daily life.

So how does God, being good, allow sin to “prosper” with our nature? Why does He let sin deflower our conscience? There is this famous saying that God hates sin but loves sinner. So how does sin play into part of our life? Even St. Paul struggle so hard to put away the “Thorn in Flesh” in his body.

Sin is actually instrument of Grace. We can’t really explain it using our mortal logic. But remember how sin brings us down to the ground and reminding us of our unworthiness, putting us into modes of repentance by which God’s grace shines forth unto us.

Just as the Bible told us: where sin abounds, Grace abounds more. We can never put our sinful nature away, but the more we are reminded of our sin, the more we realize of our unworthiness and our total ineptitude in achieving salvation. This state further tenders the soil by which God’s gospel can grow. God hates the proud but give grace to the humble. A broken spirit and contrite spirit; those are our aromatic sacrifices which is pleasing unto God. He must increase, while I must decrease.

Bear in mind as well, that we are to work our salvation with fear and trembling, and that we also ought to do our best to put down our sinful nature, just as Jesus said to the prostitute “Sin no more”. God does forbid us to revel any longer in sin.

In saying that famous words to the prostitute, Jesus was also  aware that we can never be able to put down our sinful nature in complete while living in this world, and that we will always struggle with it until the day we’re done. That struggle however, is the proof of Holy Spirit’s work in sanctifying our body. What we bear everyday is no longer our meritous works, but God’s saving Grace.

He outpours grace upon grace to us, from His mercy seat. His love never ends. His love bear all things, hope all things, endure all things. Since God is Love and that He creates the world, His love is eternal and unchanging, as much as His word.

It is simply the depth and the riches of God’s ways, that He’s using sin as one of his instruments of Grace. In the end He will be glorified beyond measure. He is a consuming fire which in the end will cleanse and redeem all defects – that we, mere mortals who deserve Hell without parole will be holy and blameless before His smiling countenance in Heaven.

So brothers and sisters, strive on, run the race, seize the prize!!

What I learned from teaching English in North Korea

What I learned from teaching English in North Korea

ideas.ted.com

Born and raised in Seoul, Suki Kim posed as an English teacher at an all-male university in Pyongyang run by evangelical Christians; she spent six months teaching the 19-year-old sons of North Korea’s ruling class. In this excerpt from her investigative memoir, she describes the experience.

“Essay” was a much-dreaded word among my students. It was the fall of 2011, and I was teaching English at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology in North Korea. Two hundred and seventy young men, and about 30 teachers, all Christian evangelicals besides me, were isolated together in a guarded compound, where our classes and movements were watched round the clock. Each lesson had to be approved by a group of North Korean staff known to us as the “counterparts.” Hoping to slip in information about the outside world, which we were not allowed to discuss, I had devised a lesson on essay writing…

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Youth

Youth is not a time of life – it is a state of mind,
it is a temper of the will,
a quality of the imagination,
a vigor of the emotions,
a predominance of courage over timidity,
of the appetite for adventure over love of ease.

Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years.
People grow old only by deserting their ideals.
Years wrinkle the skin,
but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.
Worry, doubt, self-distrust,
fear and despair – these are the long,
long years that bow the head and
turn the growing spirit back to dust.

Whether they are sixteen or seventy,
there is in every being’s heart
the love of wonder,
the sweet amazement at the stars
and star like things and thoughts,
the undaunted challenge of events,
the unfailing childlike appetite
for what is to come next,
and the joy and the game of life.

You are as young as your faith,
as old as your doubt;
as young as your self-confidence,
as old as your fear,
as young as your hope,
as old as your despair.
When the wires are all down
and all the innermost core of your heart
is covered with the snows of pessimism
and the ice of cynicism,
then you are grown old indeed.

But so long as your heart receives messages
of beauty, cheer, courage, grandeur
and power from the earth,
from man and from the Infinite,
so long you are young.

Samuel Ullman, Youth

Reality and Truth

“Everybody lies” said Dr. House, the acerbic protagonist we all know from the hit medical drama House.

Though stated by a character that most people won’t even try to befriend with due to his unfriendly manner, that statement rings true. Everybody does lie. Even babies know how to do it without being taught by their parents.

It is so easy for us to lie. It is so easy for us to hide or bury the truth in the spur of a moment for our own sake. We have this justification that if it doesn’t go that way, the reality will be worse.

Well so we can extrapolate that the real reality is not preferred over the liar’s version of “reality”. The liar’s version of reality is sweeter. The liar’s version of reality is more bearable. To the liar himself or even to the world.

What I want to propose is: Truth goes hand in hand with Reality. The moment we deny the truth, that is the moment we deny the reality we’re living on. For every lie told, reality is fragmented to infinitesimal division.

For example, when a person named X lies, lying that he turned left but actually turned right, X have to live his own version of reality, a duplicitous form of reality which in itself irrational. X lies not just to the world but also to himself. He can’t be his authentic self anymore. We can also infer that X will also put a lie upon another lie, propagating the fragmentation of reality in X’s image.

How many lies occurred in a day? Thousands? Millions? Trillions? Gazillions!!! Everyday reality suffers. Lies stacked upon lies. Truth is and always compromised. Those who live in truth must also pay the price because the reality they live in might not be the reality in truth, but reality in lies (lies from others). Such world we live in.

Imagine how sunk deep reality is, after countless burial

Imagine how mangled reality is, after countless savagery

Imagine how infinitesimal reality is, after countless fragmentation

Whenever you’re about to lie or to deny truth, always bear this fact in mind. Always bear that even if you’re not hurt directly, you’re hurting reality. Everyone’s reality.

Reality will get back to you. Nobody can predict reality. It comes full frontal to you. It is beyond you.

Think twice before you lie. Live in Truth. Live in REALity.

Sapere Aude!!

We Possess Nothing

Never say about anything, “I have lost it,” but only “I have given it back.” Is your child dead? It has been given back. Is your wife dead? She has been given back. “I have had my farm taken away.” Very well, this too has been given back. “Yet it was a rascal who took it away.” But what concern it is of yours by whose instrumentality the Giver called for its return? So long as He gives it to you, take care of it as of a thing that is not your own, as travelers treat their inn.

– Epictetus, The Manual

Back from Hiatus

Hello,

It’s been a long time I haven’t been writing in my blog, due to my new job as a teacher. I have to say that this new job really change my life. It really brings in a new world to live in. I meet A LOT of interesting people. Teachers, Students, Parents. All of them are in this giant mixing pool where they all collide for a single purpose: Education. In fact, we teachers are the captain of this ship. It’s true that we are paid by the parents, but it is us who knows where we are going and it is us who knows how to go there. Parents do help but still, we are the head.

Well, that’s my rant about Education which I have been thinking for a while. Not that I’m good enough at what I’m doing now but now I see that this is my vocation.

Through this post I open a new period by which most of my post will be more focused toward this new job of mine as a Teacher. So bear with me.

Bona Fide,

 

Zorin Wiseputra Muller