Who’s in your Boat?

March 11, 2008

“…He who sent me is with me and has not left me alone; because I always do what pleases him…” (John 8:29)

One of the participants who heard me speak this week asked me a rather disturbing question: Brother Bobby, where do you get all the energy you have whenever you preach? 

The question was understandable.

This has been a hectic week for me. (That’s the reason why I didn’t get to write my blog…) I was rushing from one speaking engagement to the next. 

Over the last ten days, I was practically before a crowd in eight of them. Due to stress, I experienced the stiffening of my shoulders just before giving a three-hour talk for a company last Friday. I battled lack of sleep when I gave a retreat in Pampanga over the weekend. I even spoke for a whole day without taking my lunch yesterday in Makati (not the fault of the organizers but the food outlet where the orders were taken). 

The question got me thinking: Where do I really get all the energy I have whenever I preach? You see, I may have been very tired but I always managed to summon an extra boost of energy whenever I stand before a crowd to preach.

Then a verse from the Gospel today struck a cord in my heart:

“…He who sent me is with me and has not left me alone…” (John 8:29)

Ah yes. There’s my answer. I am able to preach despite the fatigue not because of what I do but because of what I have. I have God with me every step of the way. And it makes all the difference.

Someone once said that the Christian life is like a boat which no storm could sink. Why? Because Jesus in it. We journey with the Master. We sail with the King. We venture with Him who is Lord of all.

But a more important question is this: How do we tell Jesus that we want Him to remain in our boats?

The continuation of the verse above gives us the answer:

“…because I always do what pleases him…” (John 8:29)

If we want God to always be with us, we must strive for this: to do always that which pleases him. Doing otherwise is like telling Him to disembark from our lives. Being a very loving God who respects our free will, God will sadly obey. He is not one who will force Himself on anyone who rejects Him. But that is where the tragedy happens.

You see, without God, our boats cannot survive the storms of life. We will sink to the depths of despair, loneliness, worry and hopelessness.

But then I look at my life and I realized that I don’t always do what pleases God. I am careless with my words. I entertain negative thoughts. I am proud. I am selfish. Does that mean God leaves my life then? Not so.

You see, the effort in itself to please Him pleases Him already. (Take some time to digest that statement.) That would be enough to keep Him in our lives.

Therefore today, I challenge you to always do what pleases God. Say no to sin. Care for the poor. Pray. Read the bible. Forgive. Love. We may not always succeed but the effort in itself pleases God. These convey the message to God that we want Him to remain in our lives.

Therefore, sail on dear friend. Face the storms of the dangerous seas of life. Be not afraid. He who sent you to venture to the depths is in your boat.

Have a blessed day!

I remain, always your friend,

Bobby Q.

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