You Are Good!

WELCOME to The Feast! I am so happy that you are here! Welcome not only to The Feast. Welcome to The Feast Family!

I’d like to say a big Thank You to all those who own our mission. You know, The Feast is on a crusade. We want to share God’s Love to the entire world.

We want to build Feasts. There are hundreds of Feasts in 26 countries right now and you’re part of that. You really are.

So, if you donate, contribute, give tithes to the particular Feast mission— you are not only building The Feast, but all our Mercy Ministries, our work for the poorest of the poor.

I pray that God provide for you so that you can provide for the mission, for the Ministry. I pray you help us out.

Thank You, Thank You so much. God reward you!

You Are Good!

SO, here we go.
Let us pray our favorite prayer in The Feast…

We are going to read Genesis Chapter 1, verses 1-3. And I want you to know that that this is very, very, very special
and I mean, we’re reading the first three chapters of the entire Bible:

When we read the word heaven, automatically, we think of what? You know, fluffy clouds, angels with wings, saints with halo… But if you look at the original Hebrew word, it just means sky.

So, when God created Heaven and the Earth, Scripture is just saying God created the sky and the earth. And earth doesn’t mean the whole globe that we think about. It means just the land, the ground that we are standing on.

The earth was formless and empty. This is what the ancients thought about pre-Creation. This is their version of nothingness. No purpose. No order.

So, when God created, He put order. He put purpose– which brings me to the question: What is your purpose? Do you know your purpose in life? Do you know why you exist?

May I tell you? I’m sure you know this: Love God. Love others.

Your purpose in life: God designed you to be in a relationship with Him and to be His representative in this world. That’s the purpose and so, when you feel there is no order, there is lack of peace, there is lack of direction… I meet a lot of persons who say this: “I’m lost. I don’t know my direction in life.”

So, my dear friends, when there is no order, when there is lack of peace in your life, move towards to your original purpose. You fulfill who you are.

When you move away from your purpose, what happens is that there is a de-creation. There is more chaos in your life.

Next line:

This is a picture of what chaos is: dark, deep, waters and this picture you will see again and again and again all throughout the Bible.

Guess what: God is in the chaos. Isn’t that Good News? The original Hebrew word for Spirit is ruach which is breath (ruach ha-kodesh, meaning holy spirit).

Whoa! God is in the chaos!

My dear friends, how many times do we experience that?

When we’re in turmoil, when there is trial, when there is a problem, and we don’t feel God. When we don’t see Him, we don’t sense Him. “God where are you? I’m in pain!”

And when you’re in pain, when you’re in chaos, I want you to know that the first three verses in the Bible say even if you don’t feel God, God is there.
He really is.

You know He was in that Great Flood. He was there designing the ark and helping Noah survive the flood. In the time of the Israelites and their journey to the
Promised Land, God was there.

God was in the chaos on the Red Sea. He was able to lead them towards Moses, through that water, through that chaos.

And Jesus walking above the stormy waters on the Sea of Galilee– Jesus was there, saying, “I’m with you and you will be able to rise above your turmoil and
your chaos and your trials. I am going to be there with you. And you’re going to be like Peter… You might be sinking right now but I’m going to pull you up.

Just keep on looking at me. Let’s fix our eyes on Jesus.

You know what’s interesting for me here? This is Day 1 when God said, “Let there be light…”

What happens, on Day 4, God created the sun… And you think there’s a discrepancy here. No discrepancy.

On Day 1, God said, “Let there be light.”
This was His own light. God is light. This was Him. His glory. His light. And God saw the light was good. And not only was the light good. If you read the next few verses, you’ll note that God kept on saying, “This is good. This is good.”

And when God created Man, He said, “This is very good.”

I want you to see this: That there is a glaring difference between Greek thinking and the Hebrew Bible. Greek thinking tends towards dualism—meaning to say, material things are bad and spiritual things are good. So, the body is bad. And anything connected with the body is bad—such as bodily desires.

And the soul is the one that is good. This is Greek thinking and it has seeped into our religion—theology. And that’s why religion can be very narrow and can be negative. But if you look at Scripture—original Scripture—you’ll note that it’s good. God’s creation is good. Your body is good. Family is good. Marriage is good. Your work is good. Money can be good—if it has the right purpose.

Let me go into something that’s very basic: You.

You are very good. You are amazing. You are wonderful. You are made in the the likeness or image of God. The Hebrew word for likeness or image is tzelem.

In ancient times, a king puts his statue in different cities to represent him. And so, it’s also used for idols —Baal, Molech–by other religions.
In ancient times, these were their tzelem.

But in Scripture, God was saying, “You don’t need tzelem. That’s prohibited because there is already a tzelem that’s representing Me. And that’s You.”

That’s Man. You are God’s image. And that’s why you are very good.

Perhaps right now you don’t feel very good, maybe because people have told you, “You’re no good.”

Maybe your own mom, your dad said, “You’re bad.”

Maybe your friends dumped you and said, “You’re not worth our time. Excuse me, you’re below our standards.”

And your boyfriend or girlfriend broke your heart, replaced you with someone else and the message was, “You’re not enough for me.”

And so, you’ve been searching all your life for this—you’ve been driven– all your actions have been driven by this thought that you’re not good enough.

May I say this very simple message to you: The first three verses of Genesis, and the rest of the book, says you’re God’s tzelem. You’re good.
You’re very good.

Now, here’s the thing… Who are you going to believe: the preachers or the Creator—the One Who made you? And the One Who made you says, “You are very, very good!”

Pray with me…Put your hands on your chest and say, “God made me good! God made me good! God made me good!”

Father in Heaven, we come before You and we pray that Your Word is so powerful and that we pray that Your Word conquer our life. And we pray that your
goodness overwhelms us and overflows every nook and cranny and dimension of our heart. And we pray that it overflows to the people around us. May this time be a time of great miracles and transform our life. In Jesus’ Name. Amen and amen.

From Creation to Celebration

THANK YOU, Bro. Bo, for that powerful message. I want to greet everybody a Happy Sunday!

And in case you’re wondering where I am, I am preaching to you from Lala’s Garden— that’s what we call my Mom’s farm here in Calaca, Batangas. We’re visiting her to celebrate her 71st birthday this March. And that said, I also want to give a shoutout to those of you celebrating your birthday this month. Let’s give our birthday celebrators a big holler, “Happy Birthday!” We declare God’s blessings and God’s abundance over your life. And we declare that this year be your breakthrough year.

Anyway, I also could not have thought of a better venue to preach in today because the subject of our talk is based on the story of Creation. I mean, look at this–We live in a wonderful world. Don’t you agree? And I pray that we would all realize that we were entrusted by God to care for this world with love and joy. You know, we have only one world. So, let’s be mindful and caring for it.

I want to preach an extremely simple message to you, and I pray that starting today, you can use this like an inspirational motto each day of your life. This will be useful to you especially during those hard, dark days that you go through.

Here it is: “It’s all good.” In the beginning, the Bible says that there was nothing. There was no sun, no moon, no sky, no trees, no animals, no grass, no mosquitoes, no cockroaches. Ahhhh…the good old days when the cockroach wasn’t invented in God’s lab yet. When I get to Heaven — and I do pray I get there— the first question I have for the Lord is: Why did you create the cockroach? To me, seeing a cockroach isn’t the problem. The problem is when it disappears.

Then we’ve got some serious issues. And I am going to be wide awake, as long
as it takes, until I hunt that single roach down, no matter how small it is.

Anyway, here’s the title of our talk:

Back to the Bible… In the beginning, there was nothing. It was only void.
Genesis says,

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. (Genesis 1:1-3 NIV)

How many of you are starting or have already started something new this year? A new hobby, a new routine, a new passion? Can you type in what you started doing? Thank you for sharing it with everyone. I asked that question because I believe that creation comes in different stages.

In my study of Genesis this week, I saw three important stages (there may be more, but I’ll stick to 3) of how God made the universe as we know it. Quick disclaimer: this is not a science talk. Science wasn’t my favorite subject in school. Nor was theology. My favorite was PE and recess. But I want you to know that everything that I will discuss with you today is based on the narrative in the Bible.

Everything begins with Creation. In the beginning, there was nothing. And then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that it was good. (v3)

Let me stop here for a moment. The author says that when God created the world, He didn’t move. He didn’t wave a magic wand as Harry Potter does. He didn’t get a hammer and some nails. It was enough for God to say, let there be light.” And there was light.

He created light just by the mere act of saying it. Only God has this power. Only God has the power to create something out of nothing without even moving. Just by speaking a word, He is able to create light. And this is how God would create the world. In the next verses, God would create the waters,  the sky, the fish, the birds, the other animals– just by uttering each word.

Imagine having that power. You could have everything you wanted.

“Let there be hamburger! Let there be pizza!

Let there be milk tea!” And then after all that eating, “Let there be six-pack abs!”…. And that’s why we’re not God. Or else we would just sit on the couch like spoiled brats.

Yes, God created all of this just by uttering what He wanted to create. The Scriptures say that we are made in His own image and likeness. So, if we are created in His image, then it means that we somehow also share in that same power. But not necessarily equal power. What do I mean by that?

Isn’t it true that our words can also shape worlds? When we speak something positive or negative, it affects reality. For example, the tongue cannot do real
physical damage– but use it in the wrong way, it can easily break a heart.

Your words have power. If you’re the type of person, that when you wake up, you utter nothing but complaints and bitterness—- guess what…You will have a
terrible day. But if you wake up and declare, “Today is the day that the Lord has made. Whatever happens– I might encounter some obstacles. I might encounter some challenges– nevertheless, I choose to rejoice and be glad in it.”

Guess what— Your day will be blessed, even if you experience some problems.
How many of you have heard of this phrase:
“Late for work because of traffic on EDSA…story of my life.”
“Late in paying my bills again so now, I have no Internet…story of my life.”
“Broke up with my 4th boyfriend…story of my life.”

Let me just say this: If the story of your life is always about misery and agony,I think you need to hire a new scriptwriter. Because the story I’ve been reading
in this Book is that God says:

After Creation, what happens? God names everything He created. That’s the second stage. God captions what He created.

God did this. He captioned every creation that He did. All except for the woman — and the animals. Up until He created man, He named everything.

Did you know that it was the man who coined the term, woman? Let me prove it to you.

God created man first, but when he saw the man was lonely, He put him to deep sleep.
When the man saw her, he said, “Whoa! Man!” And that’s the story of how the woman was named.

When you create something, you have the power to call it what you want. We named our son, Ethan Elijah. Ethan means strong and steadfast while Elijah means my God is Yahweh. So, Ethan Elijah means“I am strong and steadfast because my God is Yahweh.” It’s a good godly name.

Although we’re a little wary because in the future when he becomes a dad, they’ll have to start calling him ‘Papa-Ethan.” (sounds like Papaitan, a bitter Filipino dish)

People who meet him for the first time tell me, “Ang bait bait naman ng anak mo, Bro. Audee.”

I usually tell them not to say that because then he would be called “bait ba-ethan” (bait means good and bait-baitan means just pretending to be good).

I remember this story…

When our son turned two, some of our parent friends warned us, “Welcome to the terrible two’s!”

Have you ever heard that term? Apparently, this is the age when children become terrible and unruly. And guess what— That’s exactly what happened. Because he already had the ability to walk even if he still didn’t understand safety as adults know it, Ethan just boldly stepped out into the world without regard for human life. He would step on anything — and anyone. I couldn’t buy brand new shoes because he’d just step on them.

Whoever coined that term was a genius. But I also feel that we have a tendency to sometimes call it what it is.

“He’s terrible! So, let’s call this the terrible twos.” We like describing our situation based on what we see and what we experience. It’s easy to call something terrible. Yes, it’s terrible when you can’t get a job. It’s terrible when you lose your mother to cancer. It’s terrible when your kids are on drugs. It’s terrible when you can’t get a date. And it’s easier to just call it what it is. But it doesn’t take faith to do that. You know what takes faith? To look at something bad and then say that it’s good.

“Oh no. It’s traffic! Good! I have more time to pray or listen to a podcast.”

“MRT broke down. Now I have to walk a kilometer to the next station. Good! I can achieve 10k steps today.”

You can wait for your bad circumstance to change so you can be blessed… Or you can pronounce a blessing over your circumstance and call it what you want and then be blessed. Did you know that even if you didn’t create it, you could caption
it? I said this already earlier.

The Lord God formed from the ground all the wild animals and all the birds of the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would call them, and the man chose a name for each one. (ch. 2, v.19)

Adam enjoyed the privilege of naming every living thing that God created. Adam didn’t create the animals, but he got to name the animals.

In the same way, you don’t get to choose everything that comes into your life. But as God’s child, you get to choose what to caption whatever comes into your life. You get to call it what you want. You can choose to call your situation good— even if it isn’t.

Let me preach this: You don’t get to choose everything that comes into your life, but you do get to choose what to call whatever comes into your life. You get to caption it however you want it.

For example, many called 2020 a “destruction”. And rightly so. But I prefer calling it a “rehabilitation.” To me, it was God’s time to let the world breathe and allow us to re-assess where we are and where we’re going. It was a time for us to re-evaluate and separate what was essential from what wasn’t. Instead of calling something in your life a liability, call
it a lesson. Instead of calling something a loss, call it a gain.

Call it according to the purpose it’s achieving in your life.

Name your blessing every day. Sometimes we name the burdens more than the blessings. Try it out. Pick a sorrowful situation in your life this week and give it a new name. Call it according to the purpose it’s achieving in your life. And then watch how your perspective changes from bitterness to gratefulness.

After you create something new this year and after you caption it, here’s the third stage: Celebrate it.

Let me read to you one of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned from the Story of Creation.

The Bible says that God rested on the 7th day.
Chapter 2, verse 2:

Scripture says after He created the heavens, the waters, the plants, the trees, the birds, the fish, and the man, God rested. It was time to celebrate. Time to put His feet up and appreciate what He’s accomplished.

A lot of us are like that. When we finish a big project, a thesis, a big task, we go, “Hallelujah! Let me go on a vacation now.”

Nothing wrong with a little celebration. But note, while the text does say that God rested on the 7th day, God did something that I believe will teach us how to have joy each and every day. How many of you want joy in your life day after day?

Listen to this.

It’s not automatically evident in the text, except that the author kept repeating it. And when you realize this—it’ll blow your mind away.

Here is it: God created something new every day. First day, He created light  Second day, He created the heavens. Third day, He created the land and the sea, along with the trees. Fourth day, He created the day and night plus the changing seasons. Fifth day, He created the fish and all the other animals. Sixth day, He created man. And then He rested.

But after each creation of each day, God’s reaction was the same. The author repeats it multiple times—in verses 4, 10, 12, 18, 25. Would you like to know it?

The oft-repeated: “and God saw that it was good.”

God didn’t say, “When I get to the 7th day, then I’ll call it good.” No. He saw it good on Monday and on Tuesday and on Wednesday, on Thursday.

Yes, God celebrated each day. God didn’t rest until He finished His Creation job. But He marked each day with a small celebration. God saw the strength of each and every day. To paraphrase, God said, “I’ll rest later, but I’ll celebrate it now.”

We live in a culture that celebrates only the big accomplishments. And what happens is that we defer the celebration to a later time. We all have a then. What is your then? “When I ____, THEN I’ll celebrate.”

“When I get promoted, THEN I’ll celebrate.”

“When I get married, THEN I’ll celebrate.”

That’s all good. Celebrate the big accomplishment. But I say, celebrate the small ones too. You don’t want to get to a point in your life when you celebrate and you no longer have the energy or the vigor to enjoy the blessing. Don’t do that. Don’t wait to celebrate until you get to the next level. Celebrate it now.

“Oh man…I lost only two pounds this month.” Good! Then celebrate that! (But don’t celebrate it by ordering a whole menu off of a restaurant).

What I’m trying to say is, don’t just look for that one big thing to celebrate. Look at the small progress too. Celebrate that you were able to wake up early on Monday. Celebrate that you were able to finish writing Chapter 3 on Tuesday. Celebrate that you were able to go home early to play with your son on Wednesday. Celebrate that you were able to lose half a pound on Thursday. Celebrate that you were able to read a verse on Friday. If your life is a book, don’t just celebrate by chapters, but if possible, celebrate the verses as well.

Here’s what I want you to do: At the end of the day, when you’d given it your all, when you’d used up all the gas in your tank, regardless of whether it was a good day or a bad day, I want you to take a good look at your life and say, “It is good.”

It might have been a bad week, but I’m not going to call it a bad life. All is well. God is still good. It’s a good life. I want you to practice it right now. Say it with me: Let’s pray…

Heavely Father, Thank You so much for this Word. I pray, Lord, that whatever is happening in the life of your children lstening to this message, that this Word has ministered to remind them that each and every day is always a good day. Even, Lord, we go through trials, even if it’s a difficult day, Lord, it is still a good life. You are still blessing us and for that we are eternally grateful. So, always teach us, Lord, to look on the side of the blessings, on the side of the positive, on the side of the silver lining, to appreciate the life that You have given us. It’s all good simply because we have You. Thank You, Jesus. In Your Name, we pray. Amen.

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