One of the strangest things to me about being in DP is the Tupperware. Or rather, the lack thereof.

Growing up we always had Tupperware containers for everything (in part due to the tendency for mice to live in our pantry), and several years ago my Mama became a Tupperware consultant, so we had even more. I was always taught that it’s better to pay more upfront for something that will last basically forever.

Then I came to DP, and while there are a few pieces of Tupperware to be found, for the most part Ziploc dominates the scene.

It may seem like a really small thing, but it made me rethink my priorities; if everything in this world is temporal, why would I spend money on something I don’t really need? I may think that I need it, but really, most of the world gets along just fine without any storage containers at all.

Which made me ask the question: what small pleasures am I willing to sacrifice so that I can give more to God? Consider - $7 is enough money for a burger, or for a Bible. A burger is very unhealthy and may nourish me for one day, but a single Bible in the hands of a believer can nourish a person, a family, or even a church and community, for a lifetime.

Does that mean that I’m never going to eat at McDonald's again? Probably not, but I will certainly thank the Lord more fervently when I do.

To me there's more to it than even that. Ziploc, to me, is like many things of this world- it’s cheap, convenient, and sufficient for my current needs. Everyone - or almost everyone - has it and uses it every day. I have no need for anything else, I’m not ‘that sort of person’.

The Tupperware Company is more like God’s grace (this is an analogy, please remember. There is very little that is actually spiritual about plastic containers); you can’t just go to the store and grab it, it’s costly, but it will last forever. And if, perchance, you make a mistake and drop a frozen item on concrete (been there, done that) and it breaks, you get it replaced. Brand new, for free, just like that, just like grace. It’s not that I grew up with Tupperware because everything had to be name brand and the best quality -a lot of ours we got for under $2 at garage sales and thrift stores- but we wanted something that would last.

For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?

— Luke 9:25

I'm now faced with two questions almost every moment of my day: what can and should I give up to gain eternal life and share it with others and what am I willing to pay to have the very best of Jesus? For me this most often looks like getting up early to start my day in prayer; waiting on the Lord, not with any prayer requests, simply listening to His voice and resting the in the presence of God.



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Giving up may sound like a negative phrase, and it often can be. But when it comes to the season of Lent, giving up is one of the best things we can do.

Growing up, I was always used to people around me “giving up” something for the Lenten season. I never understood why, I just assumed that we became more spiritual by not eating chocolate, drinking coffee, etc.

Through what I have been learning in the Discipleship Program, and in seeing the lives of GFA staff, I have been realizing that there is more to Lent than this. I don’t want to participate and enter into Lent because someone told me to, or to look better than those around me. Rather, I do this because of my love for my Saviour. If there is anything hindering me in my walk with the Lord, or something that is not aiding me, I need to remove that from my life and replace it with a new practice that will draw me closer to Him. Lent is a time of mourning and repentance that helps me to remember my sin, the suffering and death that Christ went through to free me of it, and what it looks like to live in the power of the Holy Spirit. As I prepare my heart for Easter, for the great celebration of Christ’s resurrection; like He did, I first go through the pain and the suffering before the victory.

In Lent this year, I feel the Lord is really teaching me about my sin, specifically being judgmental of others. In the past, I have been very quick to quickly gloss over it or justify it, and to remind myself that Jesus has covered it all, and so I don’t need to think about it. It is most certainly true that Jesus’ blood has paid for my sin in full. But to live the free and victorious life that Christ has bought for me, I need to identify and confront the sin in my life, and in the power of Holy Spirit conquer and defeat it. This is somewhat like weeding a garden. The longer I leave sin in my life, the deeper it grows and the harder it is to pull it out by the roots. If I simply gloss over my sin and remove the visible signs, but leave the roots intact, it will quickly grow back, as I was often reminded by my mother when working pulling weeds in the garden. I also will not be able to pull out the weeds if I do not look carefully and identify them among the plants in the garden of my heart.

Each year I look forward to Lent and don’t at the same time. For me, going through Lent is a painful journey. It hurts to look at all the ugliness that remains in my life, and how often I do not surrender to Jesus. But it is a beautiful road too. It may not be easy to fast, to spend extended time in prayer, and to root out sin, but in the end, it is so, so worth it. I love to walk with my Saviour, to get to know Him more and more.

“Yet even now,” declares the Lord,
“return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
and rend your hearts and not your garments.”
Return to the Lord your God,
for He is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love;
and He relents over disaster.

— Joel 2:12-13


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About two weeks ago, I was jumping on a trampoline with my younger brother, when I suddenly came down on my foot in the wrong way. My ankle sent a signal to my brain saying, “Ouch!” And I thought, “Oh dear… That can’t be good!” I limped away to sit down and examine the injury, discovering that I had quite badly sprained my ankle. My brother said it looked like I swallowed a potato and it went right by my stomach and all the way down to my ankle! I got it properly treated and some crutches to enable me to hobble around. As I struggled into my bed that night, I groaned thinking about this lasting bother.

As soon as my ankle was diagnosed I foresaw the problems it would cause and was not happy about it. I spent some time complaining to God, asking Him why He would allow it. There was a dull ache constantly distracting me for days, and the bother of having to put ice on it and keep it raised was a nuisance. The hardest thing for me to accept was that I knew, because I couldn’t walk, I would be left out of activities, and unable to work like I normally do. Being a very active person I like to do things and be involved. The problem is that you can’t really go much anywhere with only one good foot. I felt trapped and miserable, but I knew that this response to my dilemma was not pleasing to God.

It is quite interesting how sometimes physical crises can teach us moral lessons. Me spraining my ankle taught me a few.

The book we were studying while my ankle was healing was "Calvary Road" by Roy Hession. Through this book, we learned about revival and brokenness. These two things seem quite different from each other. One we like the sound of, and the other appears painful, but the two go hand in hand. Revival is often thought of as a time when great numbers of people come to Christ, but really it is when believers are refilled with the Holy Spirit. The root words are “re” and “vivere” which mean “again” and “to live.” So, the meaning is to make alive again. You could almost say that it is like spiritual CPR. Revival sounds great and all but the only way we can experience it is by first being broken. This does not mean physically being broken, but the sacrificing of our wills and cleansing of our hearts so that Jesus can pour His life into us.

Have you ever seen a horse or any kind of animal that is untamed? They are called wild. This is what I am before I allow God to break me; like a wild horse. Roy Hession gives the illustration of the Holy Spirit being like a dove, and how a dove will only come upon an animal that is gentle and calm. When Jesus was baptized, He was called the Lamb of God by John the Baptist, and then as he rose from the water, the Holy Spirit descended on Him in the form of a dove. So, for me too, I must become humble and broken, like a lamb, to receive the revival of the Holy Spirit in me.

“So the way to be broken is to look on Him and to realize it was our sin which nailed Him there. Then as we see the love and brokenness of the God who died in our place, our hearts will become strangely melted and we will want to be broken for Him and we shall pray, “Oh, to be saved from myself, dear Lord, Oh to be lost in Thee, Oh that it might be no more I, But Christ that lives in me.”

— Roy Hession - The Calvary Road

We watched a message by Joni Eareckson Tada at the end of our study on brokenness in which she said something in her message that really captured what I had experienced just a week before. She said that disabled people often turn to God because they just have nowhere else to go. With my injured ankle, I couldn’t go very far, and after going a little ways with self pity I came to an end, and the only place I had left to go was to Jesus.

Brokenness also is not always a great one-time experience that we can mark on a calendar. It is something which needs to be done often, even daily. It is not a great emotional experience either which will leave us on a spiritual high for weeks. After I allowed God to break me and replace my will in this ordeal with His, my ankle was still the same, I still didn’t understand why, but I had this calming peace within my heart.

“…do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

— Philippians 4:6,7


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Coming to the Discipleship Program, I didn’t know I would be learning so much. I’ve studied these three books and one audio assignment in the following order: Liturgy of the Ordinary, Core Values, Divine Energy, Jesus Style, and now I’m finishing Touching Godliness. Out of these books I believe Touching Godliness has impacted me the most so far. It speaks about how important it is to submit to our delegated authorities and when we do that we submit to God Himself and please Him. Our real authority is God and if we love Him we will want to submit to those He has placed over us.

“Therefore, submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good.” (1 Peter 2:13-14)

I have failed many times in the past to submit to those over me, but my desire is to grow in this. Pain and submission go hand in hand, so if I choose the way of submission I may experience some pain but can have peace through it. The Bible has many great examples of people who were submissive and obedient to God and their delegated authorities. David, Joseph, and Paul are just a few examples for us to follow.

I especially like Joseph’s example of submission. Because of the position God had given Joseph, his entire family was permitted to live in Egypt, escaping starvation. God was able to use Joseph in this mighty way because he stayed submitted to his authority.

I’m grateful for this opportunity to be part of the Discipleship Program where I can continue to learn and grow in my walk with the Lord, alongside others who encourage me on the journey.



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The last book we as students finished was Touching Godliness by Dr. K.P. Yohannan, which talked about submission. Submission is like obedience, except that the difference is that obedience is merely the action of fulfilling an order, while submission is a heart issue. In the military, obedience is a must, because there will be consequences otherwise. In God’s army, He asks us not to just obey, but to submit; to give our hearts fully to Him. Giving up our will and plans to God is a difficult thing. It means that we’re not in control, but when it is done, it is a beautiful thing. Submitting to the Lord means that we trust Him.

When I was a little boy, I loved soldiers. My brothers and I pretended to be soldiers. I drew pictures of knights and castles. We amassed armies built out of Lego and had battles with them. Today, now that I’m older and more mature, I still like the military. I have thought about enlisting before, but it simply isn’t my calling from God. The main thing which I like about the military, is the order and how everything is structured.

I had one friend who I worked under who also liked the concept of being Christian soldiers. He eventually got the name of “Sarge” (short form of sergeant). Every time I would go ask him what he wanted me to work on next, I would snap to attention, salute and say, “Sarge! Reporting for duty Sir!” Other people watching might of thought it silly (except my brothers who did the same), but because we had that understanding of military authority and respect, it was my way of showing respect and honour to him as my leader.

When in a war, you need everything to function perfectly, if you want to win. This is why obedience is paramount in the military. When a superior officer gives you an order, you don’t question it; you obey! The officers at the top create strategies and plans to win, but they must be carried out exactly as ordered for them to work. They then give the plans to the next rank lower and so on, all the way to the privates, which is the lowest rank. When soldiers in any rank don’t obey their commanders, goodness knows what could go wrong. One little disobedience or slight mess-up can cause the whole plan to fail and many unnecessary losses.

Of course, there will always be times where there will be faults in the strategy given, and the top commanders will make mistakes. This, however does not give reason for soldiers to question their leaders’ commands. If one were to do so, even if the commanding officer made a mistake, it might happen again when there is no mistake in the order and the operation would fail. Thankfully, our top commander is one who never makes a mistake. He is all knowing, all wise, and all powerful. I think of how often I, myself have doubted God and been hesitant to obey His orders.

A spirit of submission is a spirit of love. In the army, unless the soldier is a believer, submission can never be perfected, because it must be ultimately for Jesus. A soldier can obey and serve well, but in human power, it is only so deep. When we obey out of our love for the Lord, it is true submission. When we do this, we can say as the apostle Paul did.

For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.

— 2 Timothy 4:6-8


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