Family: Personal Testimony

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1Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2"Honor your father and mother"--which is the first commandment with a promise-- 3"that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth."[1] 4

Fathers

, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.-Ephesians 6


*see Bible


Home is where the heart is! Yes, this is true-for some folks! It all depends on what you call home. Many or pretty much all of come from "dysfunctional" families. I have yet to meet anyone that comes from a "pefect-Brady Bunch like" family! Every family has some problems-small/big or less extreme to extremely high! Whatever it is, just remember-you are not alone!

I didn't know this until I went to UMM (college) from 95'-99'. I came from a family where we had our share of problems, which we tried to hide whenever we were in public-especially at church. Going to a Catholic church in our neihborhood, we didn't want anybody to know what was going on. I guess we thought people would start looking down at us if we revealed our "hidden darkness". Also, growing-up Catholic, I think we were conformed to be very passive people-besides being Asian: Filipino-Americans!

Eyes Opened!

I guess I began to realize I wasn't the only one with family problems before college. I had friends, peers, or neighbors who had their share of problems (divorce, alcoholism, no parents/"fatherless", etc...); however, we never talked much about it as I did in college. College was a big eye opener for me as my college friends and I would "open-up" on our family problems. I slowly learned how to be more active than passive on my own life as I opened up some deep wounds of my family past. After sharing with others, I realized my family's problems were not as bad as I thought. I know the Bible teaches us not to "compare one another" (2 Corinthians 10:12), but taking our eyes from the "self" and looking at "others"-this helped get a bigger perspective on many other "issues". The Bible also teaches us to "look at others better" (Philippians 2:3) than ourselves, which helps us humble ourselves.

Family Problems

The different issues in my family got me searching for more of "God". I knew about Him, but I didn't know Him! Growing up going to church every Sundays helped me to know about God! However, I was wondering why we had these family problems still (depression, fights between mom and dad, temper tantrums, financial, etc...), which we seem to take God out of the "box" only 1 day a week-Sundays!

In my first year of college, I began my personal relationship with Jesus Christ! When I mean I began, I mean I made the decision to make Him the Lord of my life and not depend on my "self" through life all the time! I surrendered to have Him take control as I couldn't handle life by myself. When I did this and started to read the Bible, I realized the solutions to all my family's problems can be solved by our Heavenly Father-the Creator!

Reaching Out to Family

The problems didn't go overnight, but it slowly went away as I began to share God's love with each of my family members. One important note is that we can be better "lights" for Jesus to people through our personal "makeover" in Christ. We can talk and share with them, but if they don't see the fruit or actions (lifestyle) of what you say to them-it become meaningless. My suggestion from my past "evangelism" is we need to "walk the talk" instead of "preaching" to them! For example, when I became "born-again" or "saved", I wanted to share the "Good News" with everybody I knew-especially my closest love ones! However, I still needed to grow in Christ, which my lifestyle hasn't really changed much. Whenever I talked to my family/friends about God, they didn't really received it as my lifestyle (still temper, drank a little, swore, etc...) hasn't really changed.

In-Time!

During my 4 years at UMM, I began to absorb more of His Word-Bible and make it apply in my life! After many areas of growth (see Growth Tips), I came to make Jesus-the Lord of my life, Savior, Heavenly Father, Friend, etc...As I changed, people around me began to see that Christ-like changed! After graduation from college, I attended my local church's Summer Institute of Ministry Training School (espeically the Evangelism week). I was touched by God to really share the Good News with each of my family. I was desperate to see my family changed after these 4 years I came to know Christ! I fasted and prayed prior to coming to visit my family one weekend. I'm not perfect and will never be perfect, but as I try to grow in my walk with Him-His light begins to shine to your family members, love ones, and the people around you! Well, I "bodly" shared the "Gospel" by doing the 2 Question Test: Are you going to Heaven? with each of my famiy members. I can't remember the exact order, but first my sister, then my mom, and my brother ended up praying to receive the Lord in their life after I did this simple plan of salvation with this tract! My Dad finally came to accept the Lord when I went to my local church in St. Paul when the pastor did the "salvation" prayer the following year (2000!).

Is that the End?-Follow-Up!

Yes, we need to follow-up (e.g. Youth Follow-Up Ideas) on these folks, like how Billy Graham does after his crusades! I felt the urge to move to the cities to help my family grow, but God took the hold of my heart to stay in "Motown" or Morris-"I'm not finish with you yet here!" (as you can see my involvements I got myself into here). I then made a compromise/covenant with God that:

"If you want me to do your work here, then I ask you if could please take care of my family back in St. Paul" as I do your unfinished work (e.g. share "Good News") for me here!"

I already can give you a personal account of how He has and is continuing to His part of the bargain. Please personally contact me:

info@goodnewseverybody.com

Balancing the Ministry

It's been 8 years and going since I first step in Morris as a college student, but 4 years and going since I felt the "calling" to stay here to do His work-ministry! However, it hasn't been easy-especially getting both ears being talked to about doing the opposite things:

"go back to St. Paul"-"stay in Morris"

This is where God comes in-all the time! It's Saturday, January 24th of 2004 and I just came from visiting my family in St. Paul-for a week for my younger brother's wedding. Whenever I go home, I feel like I don't want to back to Morris because of the "unfinished" work here-in St. Paul. However, I feel the same goes with Morris! Right now, I'm trying to learn how to balance between family and ministry.

4He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. 5(If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God's church?)-1 Timothy 3

4But if a widow has children or grandchildren, these should learn first of all to put their religion into practice by caring for their own family and so repaying their parents and grandparents, for this is pleasing to God. 5The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help. 6But the widow who lives for pleasure is dead even while she lives. 7Give the people these instructions, too, so that no one may be open to blame. 8If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.-1 Timothy 5

Yes, I do have a family here too-brothers and sisters in Christ! However, I have an intermediate family that raised me and who I've know since I came into the world! When I came to Christ, I was born to His family too...

"Even though you have ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers, for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel." -1 Corinthians 4:15

more...(search "Father" in Bible Search)

Please pray for me on this and I'll do the same for myself and others (e-mail me!).

Some cool verses on family and ministry:

-Matthew 10 on "Jesus sends out the 12"

2 1/2 Years of Prayer and Breakthrough!

Today (Wednesday, September 12th of 2007) I'm writing an update report of a recent praise report of my parents' situation. More than two and half years ago, my parents decided to live separately-not divorce. Yes, it could be worse. They had many disputes before and decided to live separately (4 houses down from each other). I guess my dad wanted to have some peace and quiet from my mom constantly in his case on some issues that I feel some was of my dad's fault. Anyways, just recently when I went to visit my parents for a week vacation. My mom and dad were "hanging-out" together. I never saw them smile and more closer since more than 2 1/2 years ago. It was actually a long waited answer to prayer to see my parents together as they were when I was home in St. Paul for a week. They still live separtely, but my dad visited my mom everyday while I was home....a step or progress! During the +2 1/2 years, my sister who was living with my mom or dad was probably the one that was affected most emotionally. She is currently doing "ok" that I rather not describe any specifics, but she is doing a lot better than last year. In fact, my sister and mom went to my local church in St. Paul with me together for the first time for such a long time. This is my update so far in my onging family's life. Thank you for your prayers and I pray that this will encourage you to "never give-up" on any of your family members that you are praying for!

It's March 18th of 2008-my 31st birthday! I just wanted to add that I'm very blessed to be able to have another birthday. I'm thankful to God for many of his blessings and that I want to be used by Him to bless others too! I know I haven't written about my family since last Fall, but I just wanted to let you all know that I'm still ("trying") reading the Word (out loud is even better) and playing "praise & worship" music (e.g. leave it on in low volume all night!) with my mom whenever I come home to visit. Also, I reccomend To be honest, God's peace is continue to overflow my family' house. In a bible study several months ago, the topic was "house cleaning". It's not only important to clean (e.g. dust, vacuum, throw garbage,etc...) your house "physically", but "spiritually" (e.g. get rid of "idols") too.

2008 Update

Wow! Praise the Lord! Halleluah! It's Monday, December 1st of 2008 as I write this 2008 update. I decided to write this because of God's move this past weekend (Thanksgiving!) alone! Hmm...how should I start this? Well, I've been seeking God through prayer and fasting (more than lately) for many different urgencies, which I'll explain more. When I arrived home on Wednesday (day before Thanksgiving), I was grateful to God to get me through the long up and down traffic (was "stuck" for awhile by Albany on I-94, which was a "first") from Morris to St. Paul. I came home (Mom's house) and was very blessed to see my nephew (1 +yr old)-Stefan. My sister asked me to drop Stefan at my younger brother's house. When I got there, my Aunt (visiting from FL) was there and my brother's family. My brother then started his share, "Sal, you're going to be proud of me...". I replied, "Oh yeah, why...". He then shared about his "new job" (got "let go" from his job in October) after being "unemployed" for 2 weeks (not that bad!-cause of prayers!). It was another computer software company (Harbinger-Group in Ham Lake, MN), but it wasn't just an "ordinary" company. My brother told me that they start each day with a 1-hour prayer time-anyone invited to come! Then during lunch time, the supervisor leads the company to a pre-meal prayer. My brother's new co-worker came to him and asked if he thought this was weird, but he responded-"I"m used to this because my older brother does this all the time!". I would later find out from my sister that this company is owned by the former IT person for the Billy Grahame Evangelistic Association-before it moved it's current headquarters from Minneapolis to North Carolina.

*PLEASE KEEP MY BROTHER (CEO) IN PRAYER DURING THIS NEW TRANSITION TO HIS NEW JOB!

Prior to this "new job", I was praying and witnessing to my brother on God's "new" purpose and plan for him in this season of his life. God used my "lay off" experience to "minister" to my younger brother during his "unemployment" season of 2+ weeks. I would encourage him about the "Purpose Driven Life" via website and phone calls.
*see GoodnewsEverybody: Life-Purpose

Another "praise report" was my last day of my 4-day weekend vacation-yesterday (Sunday, November 30th of 2008). However, it started prior (through prayer and fasting) and on Thanksgiving morning! My mom and I decided to meditate in God's Word (Bible) every morning before breakfast. We would read at least one chapter a day in the Bible each morning. My mom even thanked me to leading (Holy Spirit leading...) her to some particular chapters and stories (e.g. Solomon asking for "wisdom" and not "riches" in 1 Kings 3) that really ministered to her. Well, making the story short-God answered a specific prayer, which was to have my mom and dad both watch a current movie called "Fire Proof". When I arrived home Sunday afternoon, I got a call from my mom. She was very thankful that I recommend this to her and dad. Currently, she is trying to persuade my sister and brother to watch this!
*see GoodnewsEverybody: Movies

*PLEASE PRAY FOR MY BROTHER (marriage and family will have a strong foundation in God) AND SISTER (find true love from Heavenly Father) TO NOT ONLY WATCH THIS, BUT ALSO THAT THIS MOVIE WILL TOUCH SOME AREAS IN THEIR LIVES.

Lastly, I didn't put this in the e-mail, but I wanted to share that everyday (4 days of my holiday vacation), I woke up with a vivid dream each morning! This was something rare, which I would sometimes go through days without a "vivid" (still remember when I wake up) dream. Anyways, one of the most "disturbing" dream was of a huge wolf carrying another wolf on it's neck-dragging it. Me-being a "camera happy" guy, I was trying to take a picture of this scene on my camera phone. I was actually upstairs in my parent's bedroom (old house I used to live in) watching this from a window over looking the backyard. Suddenly, that same huge wolf tried to jump to this 2-story bedroom window. I then grabbed a fold-up chair and tried to smack it! I then woke-up seeking God and praying! Ironically, the Tuesday (fasted) prior, I was reading about Spiritual Warfare. One of the messages I got is that-"I'm not a victim, but a Victor in Christ"! This ministered to me that I should stop using my past experiences (e.g. feeling sorry for myself due to past hurts) to prevent God using me to the way He wants me to be used!

*PLEASE INTERCEDE FOR MY FAMILY AND LET ME KNOW HOW I CAN DO THE SAME WITH YOU. GOD BLESS!

I know I gotta keep praying and focus on Christ (e.g. feel from sin and temptation of the world-please pray for me too). I want to personally thank many friends, church family (e.g. word of "knowledge"-prophetic word of encouragement), and love ones too for praying!

2011 Update:

Currently (Monday, May 16th 2011) my family is going through some "challenges", but we've gone through this before. However, what makes this different from the past is my mom is more open to prayer and her faith is little more stronger. My mom and I have been praying together almost daily since this "challenge" started. I even been emailing my family members some encouraging "testimonies" of others who have overcome similar challenges. Also, I've been encouraging them to pray too. I feel this "season" in my family's life is going to just build their faith more for future challenges. "No pain no gain" (faith). Feel free to contact me on the "specific" challenge as it's too private to share "publicly".

2012 Update:

-May

Well, my parents are back living together again because of some unausual circumstances (mom's house went to bankrupt). Thus, we had to move my mom's stuff to my dad's during Memorial Weekend. I just want to encourage you all that "good" can come out of "bad" circumstances. Keep praying and be faithful!

Recommended Resources

Local-GoodnewsMorris

State-GoodnewsMinnesota

Nation-GoodnewsUSA

Children

201 Things to Do When...

201 Things to Do When... from dewbabe on GodTube.


"Testimonies from three young adults for the author and her book 201 Things to Do When Children Say I'M BORED! A resource for parents, grandparents, babysitters, teachers in the form of a checklist and a journal designed to help capture the memories of childhood fun and create a meaningful family legacy."

Evangelism

-Crusade

  • Sotomayor Family Testimony, from blip.tv


  • "Edlyn and Orlando Sotomayor share their story of how the Luis Palau BeachFest (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida) transformed their family's spiritual life, and ministered to their children." *see Twin Cities Luis Palau 04' Crusade

    Game Shows

    Family Feud Bad Answers

    "This fast money from Family Feud 1976 1st season feature some bad answers. But Don't feel bad for them, they won $6,136."

    Life

    -Peace & Reconciliation

  • Peace Talks - Ep 11 - Finding Peace With Others #4, from tangle.com

  • "Welcome to Peace Talks with Rev. John Forman.
    Email: john.peacetalks@gmail.com

    Matthew 18 teaches us the proper steps in confronting those who have sinned against us."

    *see GoodnewsEverybody.com Life- Forgiveness, Repentance, Sorry?, etc...
    Peace Talks - Ep 23 - Testimonies of Peace #2

    Peace Talks - Ep 23 - Testimonies of Peace #2 from peacetalks on GodTube.


    "Welcome to Peace Talks with Rev. John Forman.\r\nEmail: john.peacetalks@gmail.com\r\nHear how God revealed Himself to the rest of the family! God saves households today!"
    *see hypocrite

    Marriage

    The NONA WRIGHT Christian Testimony - HIGHER CALLING HIGHER PLACE: 1 of 4

    "Nona was going to kill her husband! She refused to take any more abuse from him. But what would bring her to do such a thing? Nona had been brought up in Chicago. Her father worked hard and provided well for the family of six. But her mother developed a chronic addiction to alcohol, which Nona tried to keep from her classmates. Her father began to stay away from home, spending more time with other women, while the family became fragmented. Nona essentially became the caregiver for her mother, until marriage came along. In the beginning, her marriage was fulfilling. Her husband had a good job, and Nona worked as well. They had money to do as they pleased. Because they could afford it, they became recreational users of cocaine. Over time however, her husband became addicted, and it turned him into someone Nona was prepared to murder because of his abuse to her. Throughout the trials Nona faced, she developed a special love for God that is truly precious, and she shares some insights about God that are priceless to those who have ears to hear."

    Men

    The MOSES ALEXANDER Testimony: Part 1 of 2

    The MOSES ALEXANDER Testimony: Part 1 of 2 from precioustestimonies on GodTube.


    "Moses was a hard core drug addict. He had no time for his wife. He had no time for his children. All he had time for was his drug addiction..."
    *see GoodnewsEverybody Issues-Drugs

    Ministries

  • Christian Broadcasting Network-Family Advice
  • Christian Parents
  • Focus on the Family
  • Physically Challenged

  • Family Testimony-Laurens Hope Foundation

  • "... Despite all of the difficulties that our family has faced, God�s grace IS sufficient! We have prayed for happiness and peace for Lauren and He has generously answered that prayer. Lauren�s loving-nature and contagious laughter are completely irresistible.
    Her display of unconditional love is a gift that God is using to bless others. Even though Lauren can not speak, the Holy Spirit speaks through her. Others are drawn to this spirit of love. Perfect strangers are drawn to her and long to know more. It is obvious to those who know Lauren that God has special plans for this little girl. How a child is able to inspire and show the love of Christ without being able to speak a word is truly amazing. Yet, we can see how God is allowing her to change lives through her difficult circumstances. Isn�t that what we all long for our children to accomplish? It is our prayer that you will be touched by Lauren�s story in a way that will inspire you to examine your own life and seek salvation through Jesus Christ. After all, it is only through His love and grace that �Lauren�s Hope� resides."

    Television Shows
    *my favorite 80's sitcoms

    Bill Cosby Show Opening

    "Bill Cosby Show Opening german version, ripped by me. I enhanced Color a bit. "

    Brady Bunch Kids Singing

    "The Brady Bunch opening with kids singing."

    Family Ties Theme

    Where's Skippy? Family Ties on Today Show, from youtube.com
    Full House

    "Intro to Full House , the Pilot"

    Little House on the Prairie

    "Intro to the Little House on the Prairie, the best series. The music is not original, I wait they like it. Dedicated to all the fans of LHOTP."

    Theatre

    -Drama
    FROM ASHES TO BEAUTY

    "A young girl living in a dysfunctional family discovers her true beauty. "

    Women

    Global-Multicultural

    Life

    -Peace & Reconciliation
    LATINO
    Brazil

  • FAMILY RECONCILIATION, from youtube.com

  • "This is a testimony of God's love for the families. His desire is for unity as Jesus prayed on John 17:21 As the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy, let it increase your faith for your family reconciliation. "

    Music

    -Worship
    Hear Our Praises - Video

    "Reuben Morgan Copyright 1998 Reuben Morgan Hillsongs Australia Admin. Kingsway's Thankyou Music "

  • Hear Our Praises Lyrics by Hillsong United (uppercutmusic.com)

  • "may our homes be filled with dancing
    may our streets be filled with joy.
    may injustice bow to Jesus
    as the people turn to pray.

    from the mountains to the valleys
    hear our praises rise to You,
    from the heavens to the nations
    hear our singing fill the air.

    may Your light shine in the darkness
    as we walk before the cross
    may Your glory fill the whole earth
    as the water o'er seas.

    from the mountains to the valleys
    hear our praises rise to You,
    from the heavens to the nations
    hear our singing fill the air.

    hallelujah.hallelujah
    hallelujah,hallelujah...
    hallelujah,hallelujah
    hallelujah,hallelujah.......(x3)

    from the mountains to the valleys
    hear our praises rise to You,
    from the heavens to the nations
    hear our singing fill the air."
    � 2001�2008 Uppercut Muisc "

    Email Forward

    words for today
    Wednesday, May 5, 2010 8:36 AM
    From: "Cheryl H
    To:

    " Have a wonderful wednesday!!! Thank The Lord today for the many blessings he has given each of us. If your blessed and still have your parents call them today and thank them today..If they are gone thank the Lord for them and people who supported you in your life. Love
    Cheryl

    Eph 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.
    Eph 6:2 Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;)
    Eph 6:3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.
    Eph 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
    Pro 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
    Pro 1:8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:
    Pro 1:9 For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck.
    Pro 1:10 My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.

    Honoring Our Parents Always Devotional thought from the messages of Adrian Rogers

    BIBLE MEDITATION:
    Exodus 20:12 - "Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee."

    DEVOTIONAL THOUGHT:
    Whether you are young or old, you can honor your parents. How? By showing respect. Leviticus 19:3 says, "Ye shall fear every man his mother, and his father, and keep my Sabbaths: I am the LORD your God." Now that word "fear" doesn't mean to quake in the presence of your parents. It means you are to have a holy respect for your father and your mother. You may say, "But, my parents are not worthy of respect." With all due respect, you aren't either. None of us are worthy. Only perfect children can demand perfect parents, and no children are perfect. Our parents are imperfect. We are imperfect. But God is holy, and He says that we are to respect our parents.

    ACTION POINT:
    What's your relationship like with your parents? If you've been showing less than the type of biblical respect that God requires, then begin today to turn that around for His glory! "

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