Whatever It Takes to Follow You

Whatever It Takes to Follow You

Can we boldly trust God and do whatever it takes to follow Him? Be inspired as Jill shares how God gave her the courage to live according to His plan. Here is her story.

I grew up with my family in Quezon. When I turned 16, my aunt asked if I could temporarily stay with her in Parañaque. My mother was working in Bahrain at that time, while my father was also in Parañaque but living in a company-owned dorm for employees.

When my parents agreed, I transferred to a high school in Parañaque and worked part-time at the salon managed by my aunt. On my first day on my new campus, I immediately noticed that the students there were quite different from the students from my old high school. I was not yet a Christian then, so I easily became curious about all the new things I got introduced to and allowed myself to indulge in them. I entered into a relationship with a girl from my class and invested so much of my emotions in it.

Three years into that relationship, I got invited by an officemate to attend a worship service in a small community church. When I attended, I felt a joy I had never experienced before. But I also felt uneasy—because I knew I was not honoring God in the way I was living my life. While knowing God, deep feelings of guilt continued to creep up within me. I tried to get away from the things that are not pleasing to the Lord, but I kept breaking my resolve.

Then God made a way. I landed a job in Makati, which prompted me to move to my older brother’s place in that city. I learned that he and his friend were attending worship services at Victory Fort, so I asked them to bring me along one day. After a year, I prayed and asked God to give me the courage to completely close the door to the things that are not from Him and to take away everything that was preventing me from following Him. I knew it wouldn’t be easy—in fact, it would be very painful—but I still made a decision to let Jesus be my Lord once and for all.

Last year, God surprised me when I unexpectedly found the courage to let go of the things that were breaking His heart. I prayed and felt a different kind of peace knowing that I had already surrendered everything to Him.

On October 26, 2018, I went through Victory Weekend and thanked God for freeing me from all my sins and for empowering me to share this testimony. I am beyond grateful to the Lord for taking me out of a situation that was full of pain and guilt and for helping me walk with Him in faith. He pulled me from a pit I thought I could no longer get out of and made me realize that nothing, indeed, is too hard for Him. He took away every condemning thought and enveloped me with His grace. I denied myself the things I thought I wanted, but ended up finding myself whole and complete in His love—and that’s all I needed.

Currently, I am part of Victory Fort’s kids and prayer ministries and continuously allowing God to be Lord over my life.

”You shall walk in all the way that the Lord your God has commanded you, that you may live, and that it may go well with you, and that you may live long in the land that you shall possess.” (Deuteronomy 5:33)

Following God is not easy, but it is always worth it. May we faithfully do whatever it takes to obey God and live lives according to His will and purpose every day.

Not My Plans But Yours

Not My Plans But Yours

Eduardo is a doctor who recently opened his own clinic and finished his subspecialty training. After investing half of his life in training for his profession, he had been looking forward to formally starting his practice this year—but God seemed to have other plans.

I grew up in a Christian family. I used to tell myself before that there was no need for me to be highly involved in the ministry because I already know Christ. But, God had His ways; I was eventually connected to a Victory group in 2011 and started growing more in my walk with Him.

In 2015, I heard the pastor tell the congregation to pray for a nation. When I did, God had impressed in my heart a creative access nation in Asia. I didn’t understand and tried not to think much about it, but that prayer stayed in my heart.

I am an otorhinolaryngologist or an ENT specialist by profession. During years of toil and hardship, God would always carry me through and assure me that it was Him who brought me to where I am now. Last year, I finished my subspecialty training in plastic surgery and opened my own clinic. I was ready to reap the time and money I invested in my craft, when God, unexpectedly, started calling me to do something beyond my profession.

During one of our prayer and fasting meetings in Victory Malate this year, God placed in my heart a desire to go to the nations, particularly in a country that is deemed to be dangerous by many. But like what happened in 2015, I kept brushing aside the idea of being a missionary. I kept telling myself that maybe, God was just calling me to pray for the nations. I kept ignoring the desire He had placed in my heart.

Until one day, I talked to one of the leaders in our ministry and opened up about it.  I was told that going to the mission field is a process and I should not hastily decide on it. We prayed and after that, God revealed something to me.

While I was mulling over everything, God showed me the real condition of my heart—the real reason I didn’t want to obey His call. Unknowingly, the blessings He gave me became my priority. I was looking forward to my career and how it would impact my life and identity because I knew a lot of people were expecting big things from me this year. I didn’t want to disappoint them, so I put more weight on the provision than the Provider. I placed my security on what I could achieve.

On the last day of our prayer and fasting week this year, God assured me that He who began a good work in me will bring it to completion. He gave me peace as I focused on Him and waited for His plans to unfold. I realized that what I should really focus on is how I could serve God with all my heart—whether through my profession or through a “different mission” elsewhere.

And that’s what really matters.

Currently, I am helping a friend know God more through ONE 2 ONE, and doing it gives me a different kind of joy and fulfillment. Helping people through my profession gives me a similar feeling, but it’s different in many ways. It’s one thing to save someone from a physical death; it’s another thing to help someone be saved from an impending spiritual death. God truly changed my heart.

While I am waiting for God to send me to where He wants me to be, I resolve to continue honoring Him through what I do as a doctor and as a disciple willing to make more disciples. I am ready to obey and give up all that I have to follow Him; I will always choose His plans over mine.

“We may make our plans, but God has the last word.” ( Proverbs 16:1)

God’s plans for us are always bigger and better than what we have for ourselves. Allow Him to replace our plans with His. It is hard most of the time, but following His will is always worth it in the end.