God in the center of our relationships

Archive for the ‘Holiness’ Category

Women’s point of view on men looking at porn.

Fact: Did you know that U.S. porn revenue exceeds the combined revenues of the ABC, CBA and NBC television networks (6.2 billion).


“When a woman is dating a guy who is looking at porn. It makes her feel like he’s cheating on her. Is he really so weak and desperate for sex that he has to pretend he’s getting it from some imaginary woman he’ll never meet? Sorry. guys, but for most of us girls. It just makes you slimy.If you want to avoid looking desperate. Avoid looking at porn.
It’s just plain ugly.” – Hayley DiMarco.

Christian: If you’re a guy reading this you think you’re struggling with porn. I would like to encourage you this battle can be won. But you cannot do it alone. We men need help from other men to fight with us. And of course, we need God’s help as well. Please email me at christian.ongtangco@gmail.com if you need more information and help about it.

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I could have kissed her last night.

ImageLast night I fetch my fiancée nurse Ayi from the hospital to send her home.
She should be out by 10pm but something unexpected happened with her patient that why she was dismissed late and I was able to send her home around 12 midnight.

We really made the most out of our traveling time while we were on the cab on our way to her home. We talked and shared about the thing that has happened on that day, good and sad news, we talked about my latest blog and our plans and goals for this season.

We really had a great time together even in just less than one hour ride. It’s as if we just meet each other recently, we could stare and smile at each other’s face all day and all night. But I need to leave , need to rest too. And so I had my forehead near her forehead to say my goodbye. then I stared at her lips and told her, ” You know what, I could kiss you now but I won’t. I could figure out good reasons why I could kiss you now but I won’t present them because of the following reasons;

1. I love my future wife more than my fiancée.
2. Until we get married, she is not yet mine.
3. I want to honor and treat her as she deserve.
4. I love God and I want us to be pure and holy before him.

These are all good reasons why I didn’t kiss her yet that night. One can say there’s nothing wrong with a kiss, its not a mortal sin. But my motivation could be because we want to take PRIDE of having “it” as one of my accomplishments (to look and feel good that we’re pure, holy and obedient Christians) that the first we did “IT” was only on the very night the minister says “you may now kiss the bride” BUT we miss the real point of WHY abstain from premarital sex and have our first kiss on the altar.

Following Pastor D’s example,

“… Because she is a daughter of God. Jesus gave His life for Ayi and Jesus is entrusting her to me. I want to treat Ayi with love and respect as Christ loved her by totally relying on the GRACE of God and not on my own because I know left to myself I , I CAN’T stay pure and holy without Him in the center (first priority) of our relationship. Without His GRACE, our righteousness and good deeds are all “filthy rags” in His sight.”

Inspired by Pastor D’s blog. “The first kiss, the virgin and how I totally missed the point”.

Is PDA (Public Display of Affection) ok?

One night, while seating comfortably in my seat in a public car on my way to see a friend, a couple all of a sudden started kissing and hugging each other in a very uncomfortable way which has been disturbing with the rest of the passenger of that car. I started praying and thought of writing this blog.

Please don’t get me wrong, I think PDA is NOT totally wrong but NOT totally right. Teachers and coaches sometimes used this term to inform students that they were getting too cozy with their girlfriend or boyfriend. Some couples are more affectionate than others. They feel that they display their love for one another by holding hands and touching. Other married couples feel that they can get cozy in the privacy of their homes without having to do so in public. They prefer to keep their affections at a more private level.

Ayi and I would always grin at each other whenever we see couples draped across one another in restaurants, driving down the road, in parks, and shopping centers we guard our hearts from pride or think we are holier because we don’t do what they do.

I’m sure we have all probably been in a situation when we are in a public location and two adults soon catch our eye. These adults are caught in the mist of a very passion kiss or with wandering hands that the public should not be allowed to see. A lot of them might be unaware or ignorant that when it’s done some people to feel uncomfortable.

I once asked Ayi, Should public locations be allowed to ask couples to leave due to an OVER display of public affection?
I like how a friend of mine described it “Public displays of affection can be inappropriate depending on where you are and how far you go with it.”

Here’s from a blog I read,  “Basically, the point I am trying to get across is that PDA-ing is not always okay. In fact, if more couples actually paid attention to how others react to their displays of affection, they would notice that many people become exasperated or look down upon them because of it.”

“You don’t have to be climbing all over each other or putting on some kind of a sex show to prove you appreciate your partner, being comfortable enough to stroll down Grafton Street hand-in-hand is a better indicator that your relationship is solid.” says Anne Sexton.

I know of a couple who never even hold hands when in public, but very expressive with their affection in other ways (words, service, time and gifts). Should we “cookie-cut” it with every relationship? Do Ayi and I PDA? Yes, for us “HHWW” or “Holding hands while walking” is ok. We make it a goal not to make the people around us uncomfortable.

We remind each other “Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial.” There’s a time for everything. If your a MARRIED couple,  It’s our goal as a couple to make people comfortable whenever we’re around.

“…But set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”- 1 Timothy 4:12We want to here from you? What do you think about P.D.A?

*Please note that this post is for couples in a relationship.

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Why Marriage Cannot Save you

By Sean Si

As single men and women, we all look forward to that glorious day when we will be married to the person we love. It is something that we all hope and aspire for. In a world saturated with pornography, sex and indulgence, lust is rampant. And we think that the solution is marriage – isn’t it?

 

Don’t wait for marriage to change you

 

This entry has been inspired by the book Every Young Man’s Battle by Fred Stoeker and Stephen Arterburn

A sanctuary against lust?

We think that once we get married, lust is not an issue anymore. Hey, we can satisfy our sexual desires in a way that is legitimate and morally acceptable to God in marriage, can we not? Yes, of course we can. But that doesn’t mean that we won’t get tempted with lust anymore.

From a very young age, people now are very vulnerable to getting exposed with pornography. And young Christian men and women struggle with lust ever since they can remember. Let’s face it, one reason why we look forward to marriage so much is because we have this mindset that it will somehow free us from this bondage of lust.

It most certainly won’t. Why? Simply because marriage does not, in any way, change who you are.

 

A piece of paper

I’m not saying that marriage should be taken for granted. No. Marriage is a piece of paper that testifies to your choice of committment and love to another person. It is proof that you have decided on abiding to a higher law. A law above your feelings and emotions and time. It is a law outside of this world. It is a law of God.

That piece of paper is vital. It is important. Never do business with a person who says otherwise.

But a piece of paper is not meant to change who you are. You are the only one who can change yourself – by making a choice. A choice to love and follow God and reject sin and lust.

That is why so many people wake up and realize that a wedding ring isn’t magic. A wedding ring is not a catalyst to changing who they are. And that is exactly because it is not meant to do so. A wedding ring is meant to be proof that you have decided to love someone unconditionally and nothing else. It is not meant to change you.

 

Don’t wait ’til marriage

Decide to fight lust now. Look at the truths about lust in the Bible and how devastating it is to just let it run loose in your life. It’s not easy. It takes decision, disciple and the Holy Spirit to help you overcome lust. But the alternative is devastating – living life with an addiction to lustful thoughts and sensuality.

Lust can destroy your marriage. Don’t wait until marriage for you to change. Look at all the adulterous relationships happening in our world. Married men are hooked into adultery, addicted to pornography and defeated into masturbation. Don’t think that once you’re married, masturbation goes out the window. It doesn’t.

Marriage is not about getting sex. If you make it so, you’re not really committing to love unconditionally. Sex is a part of marriage, not vice versa.

Lust is something that consistently knocks

on your door. Marriage is not something that can block it out.

Marriage can’t save you.

Don’t wait until you get there. Make a decision to stand against lust today.

 

Love for Real or Reel? “Quest for the Real Love” (part 2 of 2)

by Christian Ongtangco

We’ve finally arrived to the 2nd part of this blog series I wrote 3 years ago, ( see part 1)

I was in the hospital while writing this down, I wander why do we call the sick people “patient” was it because they have to wait first in order get treatment and healing they need? I know you already have an idea of the  mostly quoted verse in the Bible when it comes to “Love” in 1st Cor.13:4, The first characteristic of Love is Patient…. and it goes on in saying that it is kind, self-less, it trusts, hopes, and always perseveres…it never fails.

After writing my previous blog, Lots of people started asking me different questions like,” Ikakasal ka na ba? (Are you getting married) ” What inspired me to write these blogs? (You have to know this was 3 years ago, but now I so glad to say we’re getting there!). Do you think you have the right to write about it even if you’re not yet married?

on Part 1, we saw how Love that’s for REEL looks like, The World’s prescription of Love. Now I want to share to you another model. Let use share to you what I believe to be the 4 kinds of Love;
1. Eros
– is what we call Erotic love. refers to “intimate love” or romantic love.

It is present in couples in a relationship, the lover and the beloved who are in boyfriend-girlfriend , fiancé-fiancée (must have guidelines) and husband-wife relationship. this is what what God longs for all of us to have.

Just like us God doesn’t want us to be with someone whom we are not attracted with. whom we don’t like and see ourselves growing old with the other person. This kind of love can be very powerful that “any mountains can be climb, anything can be done” out of this kind of love. This is a gift from God which every couple will fight for, for the rest of their lives.

This is where emotional and physical attractions are so much involved and must be backed up by Commitments. always remember, Love is a choice, a decision and a commitment . . .  not just a feeling and all emotions. Otherwise this can be deadly and poisonous if expressed prematurely, wrong person, wrong time. you may see “Fight for purity“. For couple who are not yet married (like us) Let’s not get involve physically until the right time. God’s timing is good, pleasing and perfect. (Rom 12:2)
2. Phileo

– the next ingredient is True friendship, this is where understanding, and intimacy partners share, being best friends, that’s where time, and walks and communication and sharing hearts is present. Brotherhood ,sisterhood (bff) bestfriend-kind-of-love.

This kind of love from friendships  are based on pure delight in the company of other people. People who drink together or share a hobby may have such friendships. Where both friends enjoy each other’s characters.

Mr. Webster puts like like this “As long as both friends keep similar characters, the relationship will endure since the motive behind it is care for the friend. This is the highest level of philia, and in modern English might be called true friendship.”

In my own opinion, You can have all the “Eros love” in the world and both of you are truly madly deeply “in-love” with each other but if you two where not friends, that relationship is still superficial and it can’t last. all the more when wrinkles , “ugly spots” , weaknesses and problems arise couple need to be friends who will be partners and work like a team and friends who will help, support, serve prioritize and understanding each other.

3. Storge

Family love – this kind of love is not mentioned but has been described and demonstrated in the bible. its is the love we give and the love we receive in our family. Parent to child/ren. Father or mother-to-a-child kind of love.

4. Agape

– and last and most importantly Agape Love.  The love of God or Christ for mankind.

it refers to the fatherly love of God for humans, as well as the human reciprocal love for God; the term necessarily extends to the love of one’s fellow man. Many have thought that this word represents divine, unconditional, self-sacrificing, active, volitional, and thoughtful Love.

We know God is the source of this love. Here we ourselves to be God’s conduit, channel of love towards one another. God’s amazing love can be seen, manifested and experienced through each others’ life and desire to unconditionally love. It’s the idea of being brother and sister in Christ, loving one another radically, That’s giving the other person what they need the most when they deserve it the least.

Agape love is doing what you choose is right (in light of God’s love) because you care, not because of what you feel. Partners always encourage each other to come to God first and foremost. This is why God has to be in the center of every relationship (Ecc 4:12)

I think by this time, you know what’s on my mind,  Yes you got it right. God prescription of Love;

Eros + Phileo + Storge = Agape Love

Agape love surpasses everything. Agape love in and through our lives.

Agape is Real Love

I believe all three needs to be nourished, If we want to have a long, lasting relationship (even for singles we need to know about this and be equipped for the the future) all three must be present.
If you we’re saying it’s hard, difficult and impossible. My response to you would be a big Yes. No one can do it in their marriage and relationship. Because this is something unattainable by human efforts but I believe this is what God wants for us. left to ourselves you cannot do it, even the two of you cannot do it. that’s why we need God to be in the center of our relationship. Not by might nor by our own works but by His Amazing Grace (Eph 2:6-8), His great and unconditional love that is already made available for us.
We want to encourage you to invite God and make Him the center, our priority, source of all love and affection. Once He becomes the source, we will never ran out of love to give. you may want to see my other blog “In love forever”
If you like this post, please don’t hesitate to share, tweet, comment or subscribe to  our blog posts. We hope to hear from you too. Thanks a lot and God bless you!

Top Five Temptations Single People Face When Considering A Relationship

by Awaken Generation

These are the top temptations we see single people have to struggle through when considering a relationship…

#1 – Compromise! Hands down this is the first temptation…and I would argue that it is the girl that deals with this way more than the guy.  She begins wanting “Mr. Right” but will settle for “Mr. Right Now” if she perceives that all of her friends are getting married and she is not.  God has NEVER called His followers to compromise…EVER!!!  (And…ladies…if you are constantly having the defend the guy you are dating, then you know you are compromising.)

AND…ladies…if he is not pursuing you in a godly manner (which means he is not constantly trying to stick his hands down your pants) then drop him!

#2 – Believing That Marriage Will Solve The Struggles You Are Facing While Dating! Marriage is a magnifier…and if it is a small deal when you are dating then I promise it will be a BIG HONKIN’ deal when you get married!

#3 – Going Too Fast! Anyone can fool anyone for a short period of time!  You need to date someone “until the new wears off!”  If two people are in a hurry to get married then it is usually because they are trying to hide something from the other person…or because they just want to have sex!

#4 – Trying To Be The Person That The Person They Are Dating Wants Them To Be Rather Than Who They Are – If you are having to lie about who you are to date someone…then you need to break up today!  Ladies…DO NOT SAY you love football and want to go to games with him if you don’t know the difference between the offense and the defense.  Dudes, DO NOT SAY you absolutely LOVE chic flics and want to watch them for hours if doing so drives you crazy!  If you are doing things you HATE to do…but have refused to be honest and tell the other person the truth…then you are being dishonest with them.

#5 – Seeking Advice And/OR Affirmation From The Wrong People! Single people…please, if you want marriage/dating advice…then go to people who are actually married and have been so for a long time!

Why in the world would you ask a single person for marriage advice?  Why would you ask someone who has literally blown through relationship after relationship how to have a relationship?  Because they read a book?  Because they know some Bible verses?  REALLY?  If you want to know how to have a successful relationship…ask those who have one.

If you like this post, please don’t hesitate to share, tweet, comment or subscribe to  our blog posts. We hope to hear from you too. Thanks and God bless you!

Advice for single people

by Shane Duffey here are some quotes from him…
• singles – have you ever considered praying that God would literally shape the eyes of your future mate to love exactly who you are?
• singles – have you ever asked Him to shape the mind of your future mate to complement and complete you instead of mimic you?
• singles – have you ever asked God to prepare your heart from the unexpected… instead of expected Him to give you what you think u want?
• single men – ball up and ask a girl out
• single men – treat all single ladies with respect (& as a friend once told me) lead her away from the curse instead of toward your bedroom
• single men – quit hanging with girls you have no intention of pursuing just to get your emotional jollies
• single men – ACT LIKE A MAN and not a middle schooler… they’ll be time enough for that once your married
• single ladies – quit thinking that just b/c a guy asked you out that he wants to marry you… just stop that!
• single ladies – stop rejecting date offers from guys just b/c God didn’t put a big sign over him that says “This is THE one”!
• single ladies – stop talking about a guy you may like with your other single friends b/c they’ll impose all their past hurt on him
• single people of all sexes – unless you want to live in arranged marriage countries… go on some dates … just act like you know Jesus
DANG!!!

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