Archive for November, 2009


High School days were full of achievements and awards. I graduated as the Class Valedictorian and garnered all the certificates of awards and 27 medals.  After I graduated high school, my mother sent me to Mindanao State University. As a freshman, I didn’t know what lies ahead of me. And as expected, there were trials that I met along the way that would test my loyalty to God. First trial came when my Math subject was scheduled every Wednesday and Saturday. Should I sacrifice my faith because of this subject? No! I prayed so hard. What I did? I asked my Professor to transfer my load to another instructor that fitted my schedule. I explained to her about how important for me to follow the Law of God. And yes, she helped me. I thought everything will be going smoothly… but I was wrong. My new Math instructor did not go to class. He was absent all the time. For the whole semester we never had a quiz nor an exam and gave me a grade of 2.25.  It was the lowest grade I got. Well, not a  big deal for me after all, but it was horrible at first! I just realized that  God wanted me accept not just big things but also to appreciate small things in this world. Life is not all about being on the top. It isn’t  about reaching the peak of worldly academic enticing titles, that would welcome pride and self-exaltation. But it is more on keeping God’s commandments and do things that are pleasing in His sight.

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When I was first year high school (13 years old) I joined the school’s journalist writers club. There I was trained to write news and do copyreading. At the middle of the year we were sent for a contest; the first level (Division LEvel) with 40 contestants. Unfortunately,  I did not make it in the top 10. I was not discouraged. I prayed to God. His will be done.

The year after that, my family was driven out from Seventh Day Adventist GC because of the questions my parents asked to the pastors. By then we started to have home church. 3/4 of our brethren from the GC church joined our first worship up to the present.

When I was in 2nd year high school, I started my training again but that time I was assigned to do the Sportswriting. I undergone trainings. But I made sure I dont have trainings on Sabbath Day and the coach gave special exemptions for me. I prayed to God fervently that He will let me win in the Division level so that I can join the next level which is the Regional level. But God did not permit it. I was not discouraged. I just prayed and thanked Him. Same thing happened the next year (3rd year high school).

During my last year in high school (4th year) I joined again the writing contest. As usual…training..reading..writing..and all. I prayed that God will let me make it. In the division level I ranked 2nd (the first 7th will qualify for the regional level). So I joined the regional level with 88 contestants I prayed to God that He will let me win so that I can join the biggest event which is the National Level (whole Philippines). I ranked 6th (first 7th will qualify the next level).

February 2004 we sailed to Manila via Cagayan de Oro city because the Regional Office of the Dept of Education is in Cagayan de Oro and they will sponsor us with all the expenses for the fare back and forth. I prayed so hard that I would be able to keep God’s commandments away from home. I said to myself “I need to be courageous to say NO if they will tell me to do things that is against God’s principles.” I kept reading my Bible and shared the truth about the sabbath to other students that were with me. I explained to them why I don’t eat the food they eat, why I keep the sabbath Saturday instead of their  Sunday. And they just nodded and do their rosary, too.

We arrived in Manila friday. The Regional Director (Dept of Educ) announced that enhancement seminar will be held tomorrow (Saturday) and  no one is exempted! I talked to my coach heartily, “Ma’am, before I came here, you promised I will be exempted from Sabbath trainings.” She replied, “can’t you hear that? He is our head. We must follow or you go home. Don’t worry I will not tell your mom that you joined the training. Don’t worry you will do this once only, your God will surely understand.” I got teary eyes. I asked her “What can I do to fight my faith?” she said, “If you have the courage to talk to one of the Division Supervisors for a request to be exempted. But I tell you shes very strict, you’ll be embarrassed.” That time all I have in my heart was the courage to talk to the Supervisor. I went inside the room and prayed, “Lord I don’t want to violate  your Holy day. Please touch the heart of the Supervisor”

I took a deep breath, I went to the supervisor and said, “Good Afternoon Maam, I’m one of your students. I would like to ask for an exemption for tomorrow’s training since It is Saturday. It is the Sabbath of the Lord according to the Bible. If I’m going to violate it, He will surely won’t answer my prayers. He will not help me. All our efforts will be in vain.” Unexpectedly, she replied, “Yes, Miss Novi, I respect your faith to your God. You are exempted tomorrow. Please pray to your God that He will help you win.” Happily, I ran to my room and prayed to God and thanked Him. That Saturday, I worshiped God and studied His words.

The night came before the contest. The head of all the teachers from different schools called everyone to gather for a special worship, asking for God’s help.  There were nearly 40 students and teachers in the room that night. The principal teacher stood up and said “for the message we will ask Ms Novi to give us an encouragement“. I really wondered why she pointed me (maybe because I was the only one bringing a Bible). I did not refuse because it was a privilege. It was a chance for me to share God’s truth to these brilliant minds (although worldly wisdom). I quoted the verse my mom gave to me before I left home. In Deuteronomy 28:13…And the Lord shall make thee the head and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if thou hearken unto the commandments of the Lord thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them: I stressed to them that we have to keep His commandments in order for Him to make us the head. God’s promises are conditional. We have to keep His commandments. I enumerated the 10 commandments. I finished the message uplifting God’s Laws. I never heard a word from them.

Hours later after the worship, I was reviewing the words I’ve said. I prayed to God,Lord, please help me. Show to them that you are with me and that my words are from you. Show to them that you love those who keep your commandments. But if it isn’t your will I would accept that just like I have accepted the failures I have been through along the way before I got here.”

The contest came, in my thoughts were the promises of God. I kept on praying for His help. The gymnasium was so crowded with different contestants from different regions of the country. I cant count them one by one. We were given 1 hour to watch a  game and then 1 hour to write the news about it in  separated rooms. With an empty stomach, I finished my output 5 minutes before the due.

Upon arriving at the building where the students were accomodated, the Regional Director announced that for the first time they will ask for help from the Division Office. The Regional office (for the first time) will no longer shoulder the fare going back to our place (Misamis Occidental) due to financial shortage. So the tickets were rebooked and we have new tickets. Instead of via Cagayan, we have to sail via Ozamis this time since it is one of the cities of Misamis Occidental ( nearer).

We were in the sea port while the awarding was going on in the huge auditorium in Sta Cruz, Laguna, Philippines. A text message came to one of the teachers (I don’t have a cellphone that time). It states, “Champion, Sportswriting, Novilene. Congrats!” After hearing that, the first thing came to my mind was the Deut 28:13. I thank God so much. I heard them saying, “She won because she kept the commandments of God. Have you observed that she was always reading her Bible, indeed, God helped her.” I told them, “It wasn’t me, To Him be the glory.” God did not want me to be ashamed of the words I shared to them the night before the contest. I remember the contest between Prophet Elijah in Mount Carmel. At the end, God showed to the people the truth.

Finally, we got on board. Some of the students and teachers were no longer with us almost half of them are boarding at the other ship, the Superferry 14 (the first ship in which our ticket was booked). Around 5am, I heard the news from the national television that Superferry 14 is in tragedy. It has bombed in it at the tourist accomodation (my ticket was tourist accomodation). It burned the entire ship. Some of the news about the Superferry 14 of February 2004 tragedy is found in  http://www.newsflash.org/2004/02/hl/hl100123.htm

Everything in our life is God’s will. I learned not to complain during failures. During trying hours I just prayed to Him for strength. If the ticket was not rebooked by the Regional director, I should be one of the victims in that tragedy. Some of the students were missing until now. My life is in God’s hand. I know He has a plan for me.

He made me the head and not the tail in a national writing contest and He saved my life from the tragedy because I keep His commandments.

Later, I heard that competition is not good. Especially in the classroom because it might cultivate a pride in the heart and that invites sin. I always bear in my mind and heart that the success of that event was from God and not from my own strength. Without Him I’m nothing.

Whenever man accomplishes anything, whether in spiritual or temporal lines, he should bear in mind that he does it through cooperation with his Maker. There is great necessity for us to realize our dependence on God. Too much confidence is placed in man, too much reliance on human inventions lead us to the road of perdition and if there is too little confidence in the power which God stands ready to give. “We are laborers together with God.” 1 Cor. 3:9. Immeasurably inferior is the part which the human agent sustains; but if he is linked with the divinity of Christ, he can do all things through the strength that Christ imparts. COL 28.

The news spread throughout the province. I just replied, “It was Jesus Christ who helped me, not me alone!”

p.s
Thank you so much for the website www.remnantofgod.org. It helped me a lot in spreading the truth to my classmates and friends. the quotes I needed were  all there.

Since I was a child, I’ve been hearing parables but not until I received the truth that I started to understand spiritual things and apply them in my daily toil. I would like to share to you one of the Parables that Jesus Christ revealed on Earth. It is the Parable of the Mustard seed. In Matthew 13: 31-32 says, “Another parable put he form unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field: Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.” The germ in the seed grows by the unfolding of the life-principle which God has implanted. Its development depends upon no human power. So it is with the Kingdom of Christ. It is a new creation. Its principles of development are opposite of those that rule the kingdoms of this world. Earthly governments prevail by physical force; but the founder of the new kingdom is the Prince of Peace…The Jews looked for the kingdom of God to be established in the same way as the kingdoms of the world. To prom0te righteousness they resorted to external measures. They devised methods and plans. But Christ implants a principle. By implanting truth and righteousness. COL. p 25.

I remember when my Uncle Philip from SDA GC  bragged about how their church grew into a famous and filled with treasures. He  enumerated the riches through hospitals, schools, universities, etc..claimed to be God’s people because of these things! This became the basis of his salvation. He trust so much on the Seventh Day Adventist Church because of the riches they have. But God plainly states in the parable that the kingdom of heaven is not appreciated by Jews because they were looking for a kingdom of God to be established in the same way as the kingdoms of the world.

The kingdom of Christ in its beginning seemed humble and insignificant. Compared with earthly kingdoms it appeared to be the least of all. ..Yet in the mighty truths committed to His followers the kingdom of the gospel possessed a divine life. And how rapid was its growth, how widespread its influence! Not only is the growth of Christ’s kingdom illustrated by the parable of the mustard seed, but in every stage of its growth the experience represented in the parable is repeated. For His church in every generation God has a special truth and a special work. The truth that is hid from worldly wise and prudent is revealed to the child-like and humble. It calls for self-sacrifice. It has battles to fight and victories to win. At the outset its advocates are few. By the great men of the world and by a world-conforming church, they are opposed and despised.

This happened to many of us who claimed and stood firm on the “what is written principle”.  My family was driven out from the Seventh Day Adventist Church in the year 2000 by the Elder and the District Pastor. We were treated that way because of our firmness in the Word of God and the Spirit of Prophecy. But nonetheless, it was God’s plan.  God’s people should flee from the apostasy church for safety! Just like the Israelites during the time of Moses, God took them out from the Egyptian bondage. Amos 3:3 says, “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?  See John the Baptist, standing alone to rebuke the pride and formalism of the Jewish nation. See the first bearers of the gospel in Europe. How obscure, how hopeless, seemed the mission of Paul and Silas, the two tent makers, as they with their companions took ship at Troas  for Philippi. See  “Paul the aged,” in chains, preaching Christ in the stronghold of the Caesars. Remember Martin Luther how he hold fast God’s word against emperor and pope, declaring, “Here I take my stand; I can not do otherwise. God be my help.” Also read about John Wesley preaching Christ and His righteousness in the midst of formalism, sensualism and infidelity.

As in earlier ages, the special truths for this time are found, not with the ecclesiastical authorities, but with men and women who are not too learned or too wise to believe the word of God…God chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty “that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” (1 Cor. 2:5)

And in this last generation the parable of the mustard seed is to reach a signal and triumphant fulfillment. The little seed will become a tree. The last message of warning and mercy is to go to “every nation and kindred and tongue” (Rev. 14:6-14), “to take out of them a people for His name” (Acts 15:14; Rev. 18:1). And the earth shall be lightened with His glory. (COL. 26)

Hello world!

Hello! Hope you will be spiritually uplifted in reading my articles at wordpress. I will be writing my experiences how God’s hand moves to save me. Life without God is empty. That is why people from different parts of the world; rich and poor, balck or white….some  ended up their lives  in suicide, divorce, etc..

We should search for God’s truth..Not just to plainly profess as Christians, but be the light to everyone by walking as Christ walketh. Remember our duty …Ecclesiastes 12:13 “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and Keep His commandments for this is the whole duty of man.”

Keep the Faith based on “What is Written”

God bless us all!