Tag Archive: God


Do you know your God?


I know mine. Paul describes him well in Acts 17

  • Is knowable ( vv.: 23,27)
  • Created everything ( v. 24)
  • rules over everything he made ( v. 24-25)
  • Created us ( v. 25)
  • Doesn’t need us ( v. 25)
  • Is our ultimate source of life, sustainanice, meaning, and purpose ( vv. 27-28)
  • Determines times and places that people will live (v.26)
  • Is not like idols of gold, silver, or stone (v. 29)
  • Commands all people to repent (v. 30)
  • Will judge the world (v.31)
  • Confirmed the coming judgement with Jesus’ ressurection (v.31)

(compiled by Randy Newman)


The story is told of a water bearer in India who had two large pots. They hung on each end of a pole which he carried across his neck, but one of the pots had a crack in it. While the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master’s house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots of water to his master’s house.

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. “I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you.”

“Why?” asked the bearer. “What are you ashamed of?”

“I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master’s house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don’t get full value from your efforts,” the pot said.

In his compassion, the water bearer said, “As we return to the master’s house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path.”

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again it apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, “Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot’s side? That’s because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you’ve watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master’s table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house.”

It is an amazing thing (but true) that God is able to accomplish some wonderful things through our efforts, in spite of our imperfections. Paul said of his role as a preacher of the gospel:

“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.” (2 Cor. 4:7).

Though we may often feel inadequate and useless, if we will continue about the task that God has given us, we will produce fruit and influence lives in ways we may not even be aware of.

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” (I Cor. 15:58).

May your life “abound” this day in the work of the Lord! Though you may feel like a “cracked pot”, your efforts are not in vain.

Received as a “Thought for the Day” from Alan Smith, Boone church of Christ, Boone, NC.
http://www.weiady.org/illustrations.htm

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This story caught my attention because of it’s title. I have been boiling in my vision for so long wanting to cook it so bad but feel like it’s taking too long and sometimes doubting if I can really make the difference I want. I just happen to encounter this story when i was looking for a picture for previous post.. God probably knew i need to be encouraged.. This story reminded me that God can use me, no matter how many cracks I may have, or even if it may be taking too long, I should remain steadfast, for my labor will never be in vain if its done for the Lord. 🙂


As I was reading a book this afternoon, I encountered the story of the butterfly which kind of reminded me of my vision to help the poor. I have always used the fisherman metaphor which goes …”Teach a man to fish and you’ll feed him for a lifetime” And now I found another good metaphor to use for how I want to help them. I want them to be a full grown beautiful butterfly.

Change, often difficult but is so rewarding

Please read the story below to know what I mean:

*A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it could go no further. So the man decided to help the butterfly. He snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man expected that the wings would enlarge and expand to support the body, which would contract in time, but neither happened. Instead the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never flew. What the man, in his kindness and haste, did not understand was that the restricting cocoon was God’s way of forcing fluid from the butterfly’s body into its wings, so that it could fly once free from the cocoon. Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need. If God allowed us to go through our lives without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would not be as strong and we could never fly!
(*Ref: 48 days by Dan Miller)
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The poor should not just be given donations but should be given livelihood so they can grow and develop their skills and eventually sustain them and their family for good. It is harder at first but far more rewarding.


I recently realized,  after studying a case study about CCAP (Community Crafts Association of the Philippines), that my vision on creating a sustainable livelihood for  poor rural artisans by helping them market their handicrafts may not be SUSTAINABLE TO THEM AFTER ALL.  (sigh).  Here’s the link:

http://www.fao.org/teca/content/community-based-woven-rattan-products-manufacturing>

This study shows that on the average each producer or artisan will just be earning P1000 per month, YES PER MONTH! In this study the foreign exchange rate then was P40=US$1 so its not very far from our situation right now which is around P42+=US$1.  P1000 per month, per person/family, no matter how you look at it will never be enough to give them sustainable livelihood.  I don’t even know if its enough for their basic needs.. That’s just P33/day!    This saddens me greatly because I’ve done a lot of research about this social enterprise and have been passionately talking about it to my friends, relatives, and previous colleagues.  What’s more is that my husband and I are already planning to go to a trip in Bicol (one of the rural areas here in the Philippines) 2 weeks from now.  He already has filed his 1 week leave! (sigh). So what to do now? I honestly don’t know but I’m keeping my faith because I know that God has called me to be a social entrepreneur and He will see me through this.   For now, I’m going to start doing my experimentation as what I have resolved yesterday in my Blog.  2 of the women social entrepreneurs who inspired me started with small steps through a simple exposure on the living conditions of the poor people and I’ll just have to do the same.  So I have decided that PJ (my husband) and I will push through with our rural visit and will see from there if we can solve any problem through whatever God has gifted us with.  May it be through a handicraft business or not.

So to answer my question, what to do when results are unexpectedly negative? Look at your vision again (remind yourself always why you want to do this), tweak your action items a bit (it’s wiser to adjust along the way than stick to something blindly just because the plan is already laid out) and just trust God will direct you to the right path.

By the way, here are a few pics I’ve seen in my research.  This comes from FRPDI (Forest Research Product Development Institute).  They are a branch of DOST (Dept. Of Science and Tech.) here in the Philippines who help train producers or artisans in building quality handicrafts.  You’ll see below that two of their handicrafts are very artistically and uniquely made and Export quality.  🙂 (one is a magazine rack and the other is a floor lamp) Proud to be Pinoy when I saw this.



Been sitting on this social entrepreneurship idea of helping poor rural artisans market their handicraft via the web.  I am distracted all the time because there is this lingering fear in me that it might not work or I’m not capable of accomplishing such..  but time and again my faith and the belief that this is God’s will for me has led me on the path to continue.  So how do i start?  This morning I was looking for inspiration and where’s the best way to get it? @www.ted.com.  There are hundreds of ideas and inspirational stories of Entrepreneurs there who have succeeded in changing the world.  There’s so many that struck me but 2 of them have moved me to a more practical way of starting this vision of mine.  It is to do an experiment first.  Don’t think of a big launch because it will overwhelm you, which it did for me.  Think of a small experiment and if does make some positive change relevant to your vision, then launch it and get other people who believe in the same cause join the boat. 🙂

Here are the two women who inspired me today:

Jessica Jackley of Kiva

– http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/jessica_jackley_poverty_money_and_love.html

Jacqueline Novogratz on Patient Capitalism

– http://www.ted.com/talks/jacqueline_novogratz_on_patient_capitalism.html

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