God is Love
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” — 2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)
The Members Church of God International (MCGI) celebrated once again by offering sacrifices of thanksgiving, an International Thanksgiving to the Living God, the God of Israel, the God Almighty. The Ang Dating Daan/The Old Path Convention Center in Pampanga, Philippines served as the main location of the gathering as well as the HUB for those locales around the world that will have satellite monitoring and streaming. This is an experience truly unique, as the technology considered negatively favored by other religion is being used to glorify the Father, God Almighty. This three-day-thanksgiving started last 27 of December at 6 am and ended just this 12 am, Philippine time.
Our Presiding Minister, Brother Eliseo Soriano lead the closing prayer, we all were in the praying position facing towards the east. After which, I found myself singing in the left bleacher too, as the National Choir, MICs, with Brother Daniel Razon (Vice Presiding Minister) sang several Tanging Awit songs bidding farewell to our brethren, as they slowly packed their things up preparing to yet another journey back home to different parts in the Philippines, as well as those who monitored the event around the world via the internet.
And now that I am home, I cannot help but reminisce my experience in this wonderful event. The MCGI celebrates this feast, not a typical one because no where in the world can you find Christians having a pilgrimage from around the world to celebrate the feast for the God of Israel, Jesus Christ’s Father.
Traditionally, the MCGI gather in ADD Convention Center for two consecutive days each quarter of the year. Some of the brethren who filed appeal for lifting of their suspension for committing sins where forgiven in front of God’s people, while some of them were advised to continue what they were taught on the teachings of God and maybe next year, they will be forgiven too. Even in the consultation time, some where outright forgiven even without the appeal as Brother Eli talked with them and see them fit to be forgiven based on circumstances, evidence, and biblical situations with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. An officer was suspended too from his duty for one year when he said something that is unbecoming for a Ministry worker toward his locale members, while another one was absolved: these were finalized after Brother Eli has heard more than three locale officers and members who narrated what happened, having the first hand information, being eyewitnesses themselves.
During this event, you could observe the people of God from around the world simultaneously giving thanks to God. Based on biblical facts, The MCGI are considered God’s people, which are called by His name, who humbled themselves, and prayed, and sought His face, and turned from their wicked ways. We were hoping and praying fervently that God will hear from heaven, and will forgive our sin, and will heal our land. Brethren in Ghana, Africa and Papua New Guinea made us realize how God’s work magnifies in our own eyes as the years went on as Brother Eli moves from one country to another to share the Love of God to His people.
Brethren from Papua New Guinea singing a Filipino song, Ito ang Araw/This is The Day in one of the regular Thanksgiving during Saturdays
A line up of activities consists singing of special songs of praises and hymns, and biblical topics being discussed by Brother Eli Soriano and Brother Daniel Razon. No religious group, except the MCGI, can you experience the overflowing words of God in the Bible being revealed through its Presiding Minister as well as several topics that none of other religion had tackled or can consistently discuss and elaborate based on biblical passages.
James 2 (NIV)
5Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him?
I finally found answers to my previous post, as expected.
Isaiah 43:24 (NIV)
Thou hast bought me no sweet cane with money, neither hast thou filled me with the fat of thy sacrifices: but thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities.
That is, to always bear with all my mind, my soul, and my heart that God is Love, and all the teachings that I have learned from God written in the Bible through the reading of Brother Eliseo Soriano will all fall in their rightful places. My duty is to serve God, and knowing that God would do the same made me realize how fortunate His people and angels for having such Creator.
I learned that human ills will no longer plague me if I fervently side with the truth that is in God and shown it through good works with love – as there is a God who loves me and every man on earth, and every creatures.
1 Timothy 2 (NIV)
3This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time.
1 Timothy 4 (NIV)
9This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance 10(and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.
The next International Thanksgiving was announced before the third day of the celebration ended. It will be held on 25 – 27 March 2009, God willing.
Foreign people from one of the bible expositions by Bro Eli, talking about how they were encouraged by a humble servant of God who can read the bible and who shares knowledge of the scriptures not just by quoting them but also by knowing their meaning and living it by example with courage
1 Corinthians 1 (NIV)
26Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth.
27But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.
28He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are,
29so that no one may boast before him. 30It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
2 Corinthians 9:15 (NIV)
Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!