Planetshakers’ newest album REVIVAL and latest music videos now available!

Welcome back, my fellow Christians, music enthusiasts and all those who seek the Heavenly Father, Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit! There is something new and exciting to help you keep worshiping the Lord with and that is none other than the brand-new album of Planetshakers Church (Australia) titled REVIVAL!

REVIVAL was recently released and people around the world can avail of it through multiple online venues such as Planetshakers’ official YouTube channel, Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music, Amazon Music and Deezer.

To understand REVIVAL more, posted below is the excerpt from Planetshakers’ official announcement. Some parts in boldface…

As the world faces one of its most challenging predicaments and the church globally faces restrictions in the free world that are surprising, to say the least, God declared over Planetshakers, as a movement, ‘REVIVAL!’

REVIVAL, the album was recorded live during the Planetshakers REVIVAL Conference held in Melbourne, Australia, during a brief break in the pandemic lockdowns.

He then opened up a window of opportunity for us to join together as a church to hold REVIVAL Conference…It was raw, emotional and powerful! In the midst of restriction, God was not restricted. He moved in healing power—restoring, renewing, reviving.” exclaims Worship Leader and Pastor Sam Evans.

A view of the REVIVAL conference of Planetshakers and their unwavering worship of the Lord.

Capturing the pent-up, heartfelt roar of praise and worship that erupted during the conference, in perhaps the most raw live recording ever released from Planetshakers, REVIVAL is a full production experience.

“The songs we were singing and the declarations we were making were sothe opposite of what we were experiencing. We want to share this experience with the world with the hope of encouraging and empowering others to stand on God’s promise and believe in His ability to revive any situation with His mighty resurrection power.” continues Pastor Sam.

In relation to what was stated above, it is indeed true that when God’s children fall down, He lifts them up. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic took its toll on people and societies around the world and the effects include the prohibition of on-site, indoor worship services in churches. Still Planetshakers successfully organized its REVIVAL conference when the situation in their city eased thanks to the Lord’s intervention and I still believe that in due time this pandemic will end because God will make a way for as long as we have unwavering faith in Him and continue to praise Him and glorify Him eternally. Learn from the following holy scriptures…

For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13 (NLT)

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30 (NKJV)

Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! Praise God in his holy sanctuary!

    Praise him in his stronghold in the sky!

Praise him for his mighty miracles!

    Praise him for his magnificent greatness!

Praise him with trumpets blasting!

    Praise him with piano and guitar!

Praise him with drums and dancing!

    Praise him with loud clashing of cymbals!

    Praise him upon the high-sounding cymbals!

Let everyone everywhere join in the crescendo

    of ecstatic praise to Yahweh!

Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!

Psalm 150:1-6 (TPT)

Going back to Planetshakers’ music, REVIVAL’s worship songs include I Know You Can, Way Truth Life, All My Life, I Stand in Awe, Back to Life, Above The Storm, Free Indeed, I Gotta Praise, Running, In Your Presence, and Revival’s Here.

In ending this piece, posted below are the latest music videos of the songs All My Life, I Know You Can and I Stand in Awe from REVIVAL for you to enjoy. All praise and glory to our Lord! Be the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

For other Planetshakers-related articles of mine, click here, here, here, here, here, here and here.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Dazzler #1 (1981)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superhero enthusiasts, comic collectors, 1990s culture enthusiasts and fans of Marvel Comics! Previously, I reviewed Uncanny X-Men #130 which was the first appearance of Dazzler who went on to become one of the most notable new characters of Marvel Comics in the 1980s. After appearing in Uncanny X-Men #131 and Amazing Spider-Man #203, Dazzler became more prominent among all of Marvel’s superheroes as the publisher launched an all-new monthly series featuring her. There is more to that than meets the eye, however.

In his article titled “Dazzler and Me”, Danny Fingeroth wrote: Marvel decided to tray an experiment with the relatively new “direct market” – comic book shops. It was decided that Dazzler #1 would only be available in comic book shops, not at traditional newsstands.

Dazzler #1 sold over 400,000 copies.

Even the top-selling comics of the era sold perhaps 250,000 copies. So, the first issue, anyway, was a major hit.

Apart from the confirmed commercial success of the comic book, it is a wonder if it is still good to read by today’s standards. To find out, here is a look back at Dazzler #1, published in 1981 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Tom DeFalco and drawn by John Romita, Jr.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Dazzler running away from four armed men who had been following her since she left the disco. She finds herself corned at the dead end of an alley as the men approach her. While pretending to be reaching for her make-up in the bag, Dazzler grabs and activates her portable radio which plays music. With the music turned on, she uses her power to convert it all into a dazzling display of light and color which makes the men disoriented.

While swinging nearby, Spider-Man notices the display of light but before he begins his approach, Dazzler makes her move to knock two men out. Another man fires his gun and his bullet ricochets until it hits the portable radio stops the music and Dazzler’s lights altogether leaving her vulnerable once again…

Quality

This page alone establishes Dazzler as a person struggling to make ends meet.

As far as telling a Dazzler story goes, this comic book is the complete package and it’s got very solid writing! Apart from showing what happened to her after her appearances in the Uncanny X-Men and Amazing Spider-Man series, this comic book formally introduces Dazzler in her civilian identity as Alison Blaire and thanks to efficient writing, it also reveals threads of her past and how her mutant powers manifested. Not only that, readers will get to see the title character as a typical person who is struggling to make ends meet even though she does her best with entertainment as a career.

Strangely, the focus on Dazzler is relatively light in content and the result is several pages of Marvel universe-related filler which shows several other characters like Captain America, Iron Man, Storm, Wolverine and others present with little to no connection with the title character. The X-Men scene is a nice touch as it will remind readers about Dazzler’s first interaction with them.

As a teenager, Alison Blaire’s power begins to manifest during this particular event in her life.

To build-up the first challenge for Dazzler, this comic book has the Enchantress as the villainess and ironically it also had some room of character development for her. Clearly this was done not only to build up anticipation for the next issue but to make readers root for Dazzler some more. In retrospect, the Enchantress would later emerge as an important figure in 1984’s crossover storyline Secret Wars.

Conclusion

The scene involving the X-Men is a nice touch as it connects with Dazzler’s previous interaction with them.

While it is indeed a product of the early 1980s carrying influences from the 1970s New York club scene, Dazzler #1 (1981) is still fun and engaging to read. Clearly this comic book is a must-have for anyone who loves Dazzler and it should be entertaining enough for geeks who love the 1980s and the Marvel-related crossovers of the time. Very clearly, this comic book succeeded in introducing and developing Dazzler as a person (as opposed to being a super hero) and the background story established fits in nicely with the character’s first appearance in Uncanny X-Men #130. Very clearly, there is a lot more to Dazzler than her unique super power and her disco look.

If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Dazzler #1 (1981), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the comic book costs $70.

Overall, Dazzler #1 (1981) is highly recommended!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Top Gear (SNES)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from playing Top Gear and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Remember back in the early 1990s how impressive the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES or Super NES) was when it comes to fulfilling your early expectations of the enhanced gaming experience aided by new technology?

Super Mario World was astounding the first time I got to play it on our Super NES. The same experience too I had with The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.

And then there was our first Super NES racing game titled Top Gear (not to be confused with the popular motoring media franchise) developed by Gremlin Graphics and published by Kemco.

The game cover.

Concept and Game Design

Top Gear is a car-focused racing game that had over thirty tracks and creatively emphasized the global locations in it. The very meat of the game is its global tournament in which you need to finish at least in 5th place in order to qualify to join the next race.

Creatively, each race has courses that vary in distance, the sharpness of turns (as far as 2D graphics allowed), number of laps and, strangely enough, have certain obstacles that can distract or even surprise such as stones, iron plates and even trees.

Before choosing a car, you must pay attention to the maximum speed, acceleration, tire grip and fuel consumption.

On the player’s side, there are cars offered and they vary in terms of maximum speed, acceleration, tire grip and fuel consumption. Cars also have nitro which come in limited amounts and can be used to give you a boost

For its visual presentation, Top Gear is strictly a split-screen game even during times you play only single-player. In my experience, split-screen is more lively to watch when playing against a fellow human player.

Quality

I can say clearly that Top Gear was highly enjoyable to play, and it was more fun 2-player sessions. On the very gameplay itself, I enjoyed the high-speed challenges that include overtaking other cars on the road while trying to climb up the rankings enroute to the finish line. Speaking of challenges, the aspect of managing your fuel supply while dealing with speeding and overtaking others is memorable and there were times when my car ran out of gas and stopped because I was not able to make a pit stop during the race.

The pit stop itself can be an advantage or disadvantage depending on situations. If you are low on fuel and you still have a long way to go, you need to refuel at the pit stop. However, the more time you spend on the pit stop, the more your opponents traveled catching up with you or increasing their lead over you. There were also memorable times when I had sufficient fuel and my opponent had to refuel at the pit stop. While opponent was refueling, I just kept driving and used the nitro to increase my speed and keep on moving forward.

Split-screen all the time, even when you play single.

Going back to the fuel management aspect, there were times when my car ran out of gas and stopped. Suddenly, an AI-controlled car from behind hit my car and gave me some forward movement. There were a few, unexpected times that my gas-empty car got pushed enough to cross the finish line.

Visually, race courses are limited in the sense that the game only shows split-screen views. You always have a road to travel on which can suddenly turn left or right depending on the race course. What adds visual variety are the surroundings specifically the elements on the sides of the road (examples: the desert environment Las Vegas, the snow of Sweden, the rain forest trees of Brazil) and background art (example: the metropolitan view of Tokyo). Sprite scaling is limited but that is understandable given the limits of the Super NES. Even so, the feeling and look of 3D is sufficient.

Night driving in 2D.

While the sound effects of cars bumping, tires screeching and engines are satisfying, what really stood out is the soundtrack which, for the most part, is energetic and even encouraging enough to keep me and my friends playing. Barry Leitch produced the music and due to the lack of time provided to him, he had to literally recycle and arrange his other musical works from Lotus games.

Conclusion

One car still racing on the road with low fuel, the other car is in the pit stop refueling.

Top Gear was truly a well-made game and it succeeded not only in delivering a true console generation upgrade over our NES for console racing but also created lots of bouts of fun for me and my friends. In my experience, this Kemco-published game was the first true gem of multiplayer on the Super NES. Even by today’s standards, Top Gear remains unique and still is very enjoyable for anyone who loves 16-bit, 2-dimensional console racing.

Overall, Top Gear is highly recommended!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

A Look Back at Uncanny X-Men #130 (1980)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, X-Men fans, superhero enthusiasts, 1980s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today, we look back at the year 1980 specifically the time when the Uncanny X-Men monthly series was spearheaded by legendary creators Chris Claremont and John Byrne. In fact, we will examine here the comic book debut of Dazzler, a mutant with the ability to convert the vibrations of sound into light and energy beams. Dazzler is quite unique among all superheroes as she has been portrayed as a singer, an actress, a model and got associated with other Marvel superheroes. Marvel Comics went on to actually publish a regular comic book series about Dazzler which lasted over forty issues.

To say the least, the creation of Dazzler is quite intriguing as it involved a commission by an American record label for a special project with a disco queen character as the core concept and that Marvel Comics itself would develop the superhero (in the form of a singer) and that an actual singer will be produced by the said record label. Then Marvel editor-in-chief Jim Shooter wrote a treatment for the project which turned from an animated special into a live-action film. As creative process for Dazzler went on at Marvel, Tom DeFalco (who later succeeded Shooter as editor-in-chief) wrote her creation while John Romita, Jr. did the character design. The name Dazzler was the result of a suggestion by Roger Stern. There also was some Bo Derek influence on the creation of Dazzler.

While the special project did not happen due to the financial problems of the record label, Marvel went on to formally introduce Dazzler in the pages of an Uncanny X-Men comic book handled by Claremont-Byrne team.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Uncanny X-Men #130, published by Marvel Comics in 1980 with a story co-written by Chris Claremont and John Byrne. Byrne drew the art.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins on Delano Street in Lower Manhattan. Scott Summers/Cyclops, Jean Grey and Nightcrawler had just arrived on a mission to locate a mutant (detected by Cerebro) not knowing that they themselves are bring monitored by a hidden sinister force. With Nightcrawler left in-charge of guarding their Rolls Royce, Scott and Jean enter a deteriorating building only to find a club on an upper level full of lights, loud music, dancing and a lot of people. They begin to start searching for the detected mutant.

Outside, a truck parks on the other side of the same street where the X-Men’s Rolls Royce was parked at. Inside the truck one of the operators communicates to a certain Mr. Shaw who states that the Hellfire Club is proud. Over at the Hellfire Club’s headquarters, Sebastian Shaw and Jason Wyngarde talk about the X-Men members searching the disco. Wyngarde moves on with his plan to subvert Jean Grey and gather her into their fold…

Quality

Dazzler’s very debut on this page.

The storytelling is great which is not surprising as this was done by Claremont and Byrne. It is clear that there was a good amount of preparation done which explains this comic book’s excellent ways on emphasizing the following story points: the build-up of the Hellfire Club as a potent force of evil that await the X-Men, Kitty Pryde/Shadowcat’s growing involvement, the vulnerability of Jean Grey, the build-up of the Phoenix, and the debut of Dazzler. Along the way, the creative team also ensure that the dialogue was rich (the same thing also with the thought balloons Claremont came up with), the emphasis of super powers made sense, the action scenes were satisfying and there was a good amount of suspense here.

I love the way Dazzler’s first-ever appearance was handled as it happened just after an intriguing scene about Jean Grey’s vulnerability took place. Her debut also occurred at a point when Jean and Scott seemed to be failing to find her. Of course, the 1970s disco vibe was very strong with Dazzler.

Conclusion

The plot thickens…

Without a doubt, Uncanny X-Men #130 (1980) is a classic X-Men tale by the Claremont-Byrne team who succeeded in not only introducing Dazzler into Marvel’s comic book universe but also with strongly emphasizing the Hellfire Club as a powerful opposition which went on to have a key part in the legendary Dark Phoenix storyline that followed. Dazzler meanwhile became a very popular superhero of Marvel’s going into the 1980s. For the modern-day comic book reader, this comic book can be quite challenging to read as it is very wordy (typical of Claremont).

If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of Uncanny X-Men #130 (1980), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the very fine copy of the regular edition costs $1,407 while the fine copy of the newsstand edition costs $1,013.

Overall, Uncanny X-Men #130 (1980) is highly recommended!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Christian Music Appreciation: Mercy on Display

Welcome back, my readers and fellow Christians! In this newest edition of my Christian Music Appreciation (CMA) series, we will focus on the worship song titled Mercy on Display written by Darlene Zschech and performed by the music team of Hope Unlimited Church (HopeUC).

For the newcomers reading this, HopeUC is a Christian church founded in Australia. As of this writing, it is led by Pastor Darlene Zschech and her husband Mark. According the church’s website: Ps Mark and Darlene have a strong passion for the local church that exists to see the hope of Jesus Christ reside in every heart, across the Central Coast, Hunter Region and throughout the world.

Their desire is to see people living life out of the power that God intended for each and every one of us. Healing, wholeness and victory.

They believe in, and strongly support, mission works around the world and helping the poor by using what we have in our hands to make and be the change in this world.

They believe that the Church should be a people of faith and worship, who put God at the centre of their lives and that His Word is dependable and true for living successfully everyday, in every relationship, and situation.

To learn more about HopeUC, visit https://hopeuc.com/

Going back to the worship song, HopeUC premiered the official music video of Mercy on Display on their YouTube channel on April 14, 2021.

Before analyzing the Biblical relevance of the song, posted below for your reference are the lyrics of Mercy on Display.

Verse 1

I see the cross of Calvary

I see the pain you bore for me,

Your mercy on display for all to see

Verse 2

The earth grew dark and held its breath

As victory over hell and death was

Finished in Your perfect sacrifice

Chorus 1

The cross has made the way for us

So we can come and call upon Your name (Jesus)

And now oh death, you’ve lost your sting

As love has triumphed over sin & grave

Verse 3

For nothing now shall separate us

From Your love and from Your presence

Forever at the table of the Lord

Verse 4

Where everyone is welcome here

The veil is torn, the battle has been won

We worship You our God

Chorus 2

You Washed me clean as white as snow

I stand in awe, Your love won’t let me go, Jesus

I’ll Praise You now and evermore

You raised me up, Forever I am Yours

Bridge

You rewrote my story

I will ever praise Your name

Hallelujah, Hallelujah

I am crowned with blessing

I will always sing Your praise

Hallelujah, Hallelujah

For analysis, let’s start with Verse 1’s lyrics – I see the cross of Calvary, I see the pain you bore for me, Your mercy on display for all to see. Calvary is the place where Lord Jesus got crucified at along with the criminals who were present with Him. For greater perspective and clarity, read the scripture below…

And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him, and the criminals, one on the right hand and the other on the left.

Luke 23:33 (NKJV)

It should be noted that Calvary is derived from the Latin term calvaria which means “a skull.” The Passion Translation of the same scripture is read as follows…

When they came to the place that is known as The Skull, the guards crucified Jesus, nailing him on the center cross between the two criminals.

Luke 23:33 (TPT)

As Lord Jesus got crucified, He endured tremendous pain and He also paid for humanity’s sins. It was also there at Calvary where His cross was set up in full view of the people. At His cross, Lord Jesus told the Heavenly Father to forgive the people (grant them mercy). Refer to the scripture below in New King James Version and The Passion Translation…

Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.”

And they divided His garments and cast lots.

Luke 23:34 (NKJV)

While they were nailing Jesus to the cross, he prayed over and over, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing.”

The soldiers, after they crucified him, gambled over his clothing.

Luke 23:34 (TPT)

With the above scriptures, it is clear that Verse 1 of the song is indeed biblically relevant in reference to the crucifixion (Lord Jesus’ paying the price for our sins) and the mercy from God (as Lord Jesus reached out to Him to forgive the people).

Moving on, Verse 2’s lyrics are as follows – The earth grew dark and held its breath, As victory over hell and death was, Finished in Your perfect sacrifice. Personally, I strongly believe that Verse 2 is directly related to the holy scripture below…

Now it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. Then the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two. And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, “Father, ‘into Your hands I commit My spirit.’ ” Having said this, He breathed His last.

So when the centurion saw what had happened, he glorified God, saying, “Certainly this was a righteous Man!”

Luke 23:44-47 (NKJV)

In the above scripture, the sacrifice of Lord Jesus was completed and the victory was realized not only for that point of time but for all time which paved the way for further generations of people to find Him and decide to repent to Him, submit to Him, become faithful to Him and receive salvation. The Roman centurion who witnessed His death realized that He was God, worshiped (refer to New Living Translation) and glorified (refer to the Passion Translation) Him. As we all know, Lord Jesus returned from the dead days later.

Moving on are the lyrics from Chorus 1 – The cross has made the way for us, So we can come and call upon Your name (Jesus), And now oh death, you’ve lost your sting, As love has triumphed over sin & grave. Those words remind me that not only is our Lord our source and salvation, He is also our protector and healer which in turn should remind all of you to come to Him. In any time of darkness or trouble, the Lord is our light and we need to come to Him and be faithful to Him. Learn more about coming to Him and reaching out to Him by calling His name wholeheartedly from the scriptures below.

God, hear my prayer. Listen to my heart’s cry.

For no matter where I am, even when I’m far from home,

    I will cry out to you for a father’s help.

    When I’m feeble and overwhelmed by life,

    guide me into your glory, where I am safe and sheltered.

Lord, you are a paradise of protection to me.

    You lift me high above the fray.

    None of my foes can touch me

    when I’m held firmly in your wraparound presence!

Keep me in this glory.

    Let me live continually under your splendor-shadow,

    hiding my life in you forever.

Psalm 61:1-4 (TPT)

And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.

Acts 22:16 (NKJV)

in writing you this letter addressed to the community of God throughout the city of Corinth. For you have been made pure, set apart in the Anointed One, Jesus. And God has invited you to be his devoted and holy people, and not only you, but everyone everywhere who calls on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ as their Lord, and ours also.

1 Corinthians 1:2 (TPT)

Lord Jesus, who overcame death, is truly the ultimate and definitive savior, and anyone who seeks salvation only need to reach out to Him and be faithful to Him. The above scriptures clearly reflect that and the lyrics in Chorus 1 of the song Mercy on Display are indeed holy. You want mercy from high above? Come to the Lord and get born again (read the words of Lord Jesus in John 3:3).

Movie forward, here are the lyrics in the Bridge – You rewrote my story, I will ever praise Your name, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, I am crowned with blessing, I will always sing Your praise, Hallelujah, Hallelujah. These words are a lively reminder that once you get born again and accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you become a new creation. You also become a child of God, one who is faithful to Him, who follows His Word (the Holy Bible which is the ultimate written authority) and preach His Word to the rest of the world. It is also true that each of us has been created by God to worship Him, His Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit eternally. Learn from the holy scriptures below.

Now, if anyone is enfolded into Christ, he has become an entirely new person. All that is related to the old order has vanished. Behold, everything is fresh and new.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (TPT)

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.

1 Peter 2:9-10 (NKJV)

Come and kneel before this Creator-God;

    come and bow before the mighty God, our majestic maker!

Psalm 95:6 (TPT)

Everyone praise the Lord God of Israel, always and forever!

    For he is from eternity past

    and will remain for the eternity to come.

    That’s the way it will be forever.

    Faithful is our King! Amen!

Psalm 41:13 (TPT)

Indeed, the lyrics analyzed confirm that HopeUC’s song Mercy on Display is holy. Mercy from the Lord is true and anyone who repents and submits to Him will gain it and move forward with the new life dedicated and filled with faith in Him. Musically, Mercy on Display is beautiful to listen to and it is a suitable song to be played at church during Sunday worship services or during church special events whenever there is a need to play something smoother or more solemn to the church attendees. Lastly, I can say that Mercy on Display was written to help deepen a person’s faith in the Lord.

In conclusion, posted below is the official music video of Mercy on Display performed by the HopeUC music team led by Darlene Zschech herself! While listening to it, remember to be faithful and thankful to the Lord. Always remember to realize the good life from the Lord, practice Christian habitsget yourself planted in a local church (be led by Him) and remember the truth that He rewards the faithful abundantly and He established plans for you even before you were even created! Continue to be people of the Word, seek God through His son Jesus, and keep on being the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Watch the official music video of Yahweh Oh now!

Welcome back, my fellow brothers and sisters of the Spiritual Family (God’s Family)! I’ve got great news to share with you here. Chances are, you are familiar already about how much I loved the worship song Yahweh Oh (by COG Worship) for its very holy lyrics, its energetic tone, its wonderful music and the fact that it was written to lift up the hearts of the faithful to keep on pursuing Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit and God our Heavenly Father.

Yahweh Oh is such a great song, I believe that the rest of the world has to hear it. I also believe the song can help many people worldwide to find their paths leading to the Lord for their salvation! Going back to the great news mentioned earlier, I am happy to share with you that COG Worship (a group truly anointed by the Lord) produced and released the official music video of Yahweh Oh which you can find right below (note: lyrics and credits placed below the music video). I encourage all of you to watch it and also take time to share it to others. Enjoy Yahweh Oh and keep on persevering as the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

Lyrics

Yahweh oh oh oh

Yahweh oh oh oh

Yahweh oh oh oh

Woah woah

Yahweh! Yahweh! Yahweh! Yahweh!

Almighty God

We want to praise You for all the things You’ve done

For us You’ve shed your blood

To take away all our sins and shame

To You be all the glory and the praise

We raise our hands and shout Your Name!

Yahweh oh oh oh (Great are you Lord)

Yahweh oh oh oh

Yahweh oh oh oh (Great are you Lord)

Unfailing God

We want to thank You, for your unending love

For us Your promises

They come alive more and more in our lives

To You be all the glory and the praise

We raise our hands and shout Your Name!

We will worship ‘til tomorrow comes

Forever we’ll sing our praises to You

In Your presence You have changed our lives

Now we’re ready to go

Yahweh oh oh oh (Great are you Lord)

Yahweh oh oh oh

Yahweh oh oh oh (Great are you Lord)

Credits

Executive Producer: Gigi Velasco

Director: Patricia Miranda

Asst. Director: Noli Maranan

Lighting & Videographer: Renzo Portacio

Art Director: Denise Velasco

Editor: Renzo Portacio, Jedtroy Sienes, Paul Glovo

Production Design: Denise Velasco, Red Baluyot

Production Manager: Leah Oñate

Stylist: Karla Calitisen

Hair & Makeup: Think Tank Glam Team

Written by Noli Maranan. Music produced by Joshua Pacleb and Raynard Mame. Arranged by Raynard Mame and Sai Apolinario on guitars, Joshua Pacleb on bass, Joshua Fabella on drums, Jeff McCullough on synthesis and other instruments. All programming and instrumentation by Jeff McCullough. Choir vocals Felix Ancheta, Jencis Honorio, Angelica Jizmundo, Raynard Mame, Joshua Pacleb. Mixed by Jeff McCullough and Joshua Pacleb. Mastered by Jeff McCullough.

Yahweh Oh is a property of COG Worship.

©2018 Music by COG Worship

Connect with COG Worship on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/cogworship, on Instagram at https://instagram.com/cogworship and follow their YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/c/COGWorship/featured

And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” Moreover God said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: ‘The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial to all generations.’

Exodus 3:14-15 (NKJV)

Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable.

Psalm 145:3 (NKJV)

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Christian Music Appreciation: Great Outpouring

Welcome back, my fellow Christians, music enthusiasts and those who seek the Heavenly Father, Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit! In this newest edition of my ongoing Christian Music Appreciation (CMA) series, we are about to examine the holiness and relevance of another worship song by the great musicians of Planetshakers Church (Australia) titled Great Outpouring.

Great Outpouring is one of the songs included in Planetshakers’ most recent album Over It All. Its title alone is a great reminder of the truth recorded in the Holy Bible…there truly is a significant outpouring of the Holy Spirit which is something that Christians, each and every member of the Body of Christ, can always keep living with while being faithful to the Lord.

Here are the lyrics for your viewing and musical learning. The analysis of key parts of the lyrics will follow afterwards.

[Verse 1]

Come upon me

Overwhelm me

Overshadow

In Your glory

I am ready

I am willing

Heart surrendered

To Your leading

[Pre-Chorus]

You said to wait

For power to clothe me

You’d send a flame again

[Chorus]

So come now

Lord resurrect us

In Your power

Fill us afresh

And here now

Pour out Your Spirit again

Pour out Your Spirit again

[Verse 2]

There’s a stirring

Things are moving

There’s a hunger

You’re restoring

We are counting

On Your Spirit

Send Your rushing

Wind again

[Pre-Chorus]

Oh You said to wait

For power to clothe me

You’d send a flame again

[Chorus]

So come now

Lord resurrect us

In Your power

Fill us afresh

And here now

Pour out Your Spirit again

So come now

Lord resurrect us

In Your power

Fill us afresh

And here now

Pour out Your Spirit again

Pour out Your Spirit again

[Bridge 1]

I can hear it

The sound of a rushing wind

I can feel it

The flame of Your fire again

I receive it

The power that raised the dead

This is the great outpouring

[Bridge 2]

Can you see it?

Revival is in the air

There is freedom

Let churches be filled again

In this season

Heaven is rushing in

This is the great outpouring

[Refrain]

Woah

This is the great outpouring

Woah

[Chorus]

So come now

Lord resurrect us

In Your power

Fill us afresh

And here now

Pour out Your Spirit again

So come now

Lord resurrect us

In Your power

Fill us afresh

And here now

Pour out Your Spirit again

Pour out Your Spirit

[Bridge 1]

I can hear it

The sound of a rushing wind

I can feel it

The flame of Your fire again

I receive it

The power that raised the dead

This is the great outpouring

[Bridge 2]

Can you see it?

Revival is in the air

There is freedom

Let churches be filled again

In this season

Heaven is rushing in

This is the great outpouring

[Refrain]

Woah

This is the great outpouring

Woah

[Outro]

For analysis, let’s start with Verse 1’s lyrics – Come upon me, Overwhelm me, Overshadow, In Your glory, I am ready, I am willing, Heart surrendered, To Your leading. Verse 1 is about making the decision to submit to the Lord, repenting to Him and allowing the Holy Spirit to come not only to you but also into your heart – receiving the Holy Spirit! From that point on, being led by the Holy Spirit and being faithful to the Lord become the new ways of living. This also means living as the new creation under Christ which is the result of getting born again (that Lord Jesus Himself made clear)! All of these happen when the seeker willingly decides to be Christian and get baptized spiritually (note: water baptism does not save anybody). Learn from the following holy scriptures below…

I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

Matthew 3:11 (NKJV)

Peter replied, “Repent and return to God, and each one of you must be baptized in the name of Jesus, the Anointed One, to have your sins removed. Then you may take hold of the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:38 (TPT)

We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God freely gives to all who believe in him.

Acts 5:32 (TPT)

Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born [a]again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:3 (NKJV)

Now, if anyone is enfolded into Christ, he has become an entirely new creation. All that is related to the old order has vanished. Behold, everything is fresh and new.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (TPT)

Moving on, the following lyrics from the longer version of the Chorus, I believe, is the very heart of the song as it deals with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit which goes as follows – So come now, Lord resurrect us, In Your power, Fill us afresh, And here now, Pour out Your Spirit again, So come now, Lord resurrect us, In Your power, Fill us afresh, And here now, Pour out Your Spirit again, Pour out Your Spirit.

Let’s get straight to the point here…the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is real and here are the holy scriptures that confirm it is indeed true…

And it shall come to pass afterward

That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh;

Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,

Your old men shall dream dreams,

Your young men shall see visions.

And also on My menservants and on My maidservants

I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

Joel 2: 28-29 (NKJV)

And it shall come to pass

That whoever calls on the name of the Lord

Shall be saved.

For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance,

As the Lord has said,

Among the remnant whom the Lord calls.

Joel 2:32 (NKJV)

For I will pour water on the thirsty land

And streams on the dry ground;

I will pour out My Spirit on your offspring,

And My blessing on your descendants;

Isaiah 44:3 (NASB)

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Acts 2:1-4 (NKJV)

But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,

That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;

Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,

Your young men shall see visions,

Your old men shall dream dreams.

And on My menservants and on My maidservants

I will pour out My Spirit in those days;

And they shall prophesy.

I will show wonders in heaven above

And signs in the earth beneath:

Blood and fire and vapor of smoke.

The sun shall be turned into darkness,

And the moon into blood,

Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord.

And it shall come to pass

That whoever calls on the name of the Lord

Shall be saved.’

Acts 2:16-21 (NKJV)

“If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”

John 14:15-17 (NKJV)

In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,

Ephesians 1:13 (NKJV)

As seen in the above verses, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit was prophesied in the Old Testament by the prophets Joel and Isaiah. The Old Testament prophecies got fulfilled within the New Testament on the Day of Pentecost and the apostle Paul, in front of many people, confirmed that the prophecy of Joel was fulfilled. By believing in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we get saved and allow the Holy Spirit to occupy our hearts. Jesus Himself referred to the Holy Spirit as the Helper from the Heavenly Father, and the Spirit of Truth. Getting saved (born again) makes us children of God and as such we must allow ourselves to be led by the Holy Spirit, let Him guide us, reform us, restore us, prosper us and ensure we each have a personal relationship with the Lord. Along the way, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit for us manifests and becomes clearly true.

Going back to the lyrics in the longer chorus, I believe that the line Pour out Your Spirit again is about urging the Holy Spirit to make its presence felt not only for faithful Christians who continue to pursue the Lord but also to those who are still lost and unsaved which our screwed-up world is so full of. It should be noted that there are also Christians who, unfortunately, backslid and lost faith due to circumstances (example: the current pandemic that brought down societies and economies worldwide) at a time when their faith was not strong enough nor refined enough.

That being said, I believe the song Great Outpouring can help deepen the faith of the faithful ones while also working as an invitation to the lost and unsaved souls who have not realized that they can stop suffering by becoming born again and submitting themselves to the Lord for true reform. I assure all of you reading this that there are still lots of people who did not accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior because of religion, unbelief, idolatry (which is truly unholy), traditions, rituals, homosexuality, anarchy, terrorism, socialism, Communism, racism, Leftism, feminism, corruption, immorality, critical race theory, rebellion, political correctness, anti-Semitism, dishonesty and other negative elements used by Satan all over the world. There are lots of people who remain lost and unsaved because of their failure to have true fellowship with the Lord, because they did not believe nor prioritized the Word of God (the Holy Bible), because they allowed themselves to be consumed by evil forces in this world, and because they embraced religion or unbelief instead of getting into a relationship with the Heavenly Father, His Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Obviously, the lost and unsaved souls have not realized the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and they can have it by simply deciding to submit themselves to the Lord. That being said, we Christians should keep on persevering with praying for the lost and unsaved souls, and help them realize God’s Word is always true. Again, the song Great Outpouring can be used to reach out to the lost and unsaved souls around us.

Musically, Great Outpouring is indeed beautiful to listen to and, more importantly, its lyrics are truly holy. I believe that Planetshakers’ music team were led by the Holy Spirit in composing the song and formulating its music before officially recording it. Take note of the following lines from different parts of the lyrics – Let churches be filled again (Bridge 2), The flame of Your fire again I receive it (Bridge 1), There’s a stirring, Things are moving (Verse 2) – and you should see that they are all based on the Holy Bible.

When it comes to playing Great Outpouring at church during Sunday worship service, I would suggest to church music teams/bands to consider playing the song as the conclusion if they want to set solemnity with the church attendees after playing the more energetic songs during the early part of the musical performance. Planetshakers’ Great Outpouring is highly recommended!

In conclusion, posted below is the official music video of Great Outpouring performed by Planetshakers. While listening to it, remember to be faithful and thankful to the Lord. Always remember to realize the good life from the Lord, practice Christian habits , get yourself planted in a local church (be led by Him) and remember the truth that He rewards the faithful abundantly. Continue to be people of the Word and keep on being the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Christian Music Appreciation: My Strength

Welcome back, my fellow faithful Christians, pursuers of our Lord and readers who love music. This is the latest edition of my ongoing Christian Music Appreciation (CMA) series and today we will examine together the holiness and beauty of the worship song My Strength.

My Strength was performed live at EpicLife Church during a Sunday worship service in 2020 with Pastor Martha Munizzi leading the singing with their church music team (including her two very talented and anointed daughters). The video of the said performance is posted near the end of this article.

That being said, we can start looking at the official lyrics of My Strength and analyze them afterwards. Here are the lyrics for your reference and faith in the Lord…

Verse 1

My strength My strength

Oh, the joy of the Lord is

My strength My strength

Oh, the joy of the Lord is

My strength that is enough to overcome the world

Chorus

You’re the joy no one can take away

You’re the joy no one can take away

You’re the peace inside I can’t explain

You’re the strength I need you will always be

Verse 2

My strength my strength

Oh, the joy of the Lord is

My strength my strength

Oh, the joy of the Lord is

My strength that is enough to overcome the world

Bridge

Stronger stronger, I’m getting stronger

The joy of the Lord, it makes me stronger

Greater, greater, my God is greater

His power, His power it make me stronger

What is easy to point out here for analysis are the following lyrics that served as the first and second verses of the song: My strength My strength, Oh, the joy of the Lord is, My strength My strength, Oh, the joy of the Lord is, My strength that is enough to overcome the world.

So more than once, the joy of the Lord is our strength was expressed. It is about strength that is so abundant, it is enough to overcome the world. Overcome the world not in the political sense and certainly not in the militaristic sense. It is all about faith in the Lord that will heal people in our screwed-up world, restoring them to God’s original plan for each of them, blessing them, uplifting them from the darkness of the world and leading them to His kingdom. There is one notable holy scripture that easily comes to mind…

Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”

Nehemiah 8:10 (NKJV)

Nehemiah 8:10 in the New King James Version (NKJV) emphasized the cultivating and promotion of the joy of the Lord among the people of God as a powerful source of spiritual strength. As Christians, we are meant to be strong, optimistic, fearless and aggressive since we are led by our faith in the Heavenly Father, our Lord and Savior Jesus and the Holy Spirit. The joy of the Lord as our strength is a key part of our growing into Godliness. In fact, understanding and obeying scriptures in the Holy Bible (the Word of God) brings joy to our lives and orients us to acknowledge His hand in our success. This is something we can do to help all the unsaved and lost souls find their way back to the Lord. Now let’s take a look at Nehemiah 8:10 in two other translations…

And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”

Nehemiah 8:10 (NLT)

Then he said to them, “Go, eat the festival foods, drink the sweet drinks, and send portions to him who has nothing prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your refuge.”

Nehemiah 8:10 (NASB)

Nehemiah 8:10 in the New Living Translation (NLT) has the exact same nine last words as the same scripture in the New King James Version. In the North American Standard Bible (NASB) translation, the joy of the Lord is described as the Christian’s refuge, meaning a spiritual stronghold. Stronghold obviously reflects our strength in God.

In Nehemiah 8, Ezra (the associate of Nehemiah) read God’s Word to His people who suffered through severe consequence for their rejection of the Lord, rejection of His covenant and because they did not live in accordance to God’s law. Rebellion was also a defining value of the people Ezra read to. Still, God was willing to forgive the people and restore them. This was emphasized by what Ezra declared to them in Nehemiah 8:10, which ultimately lifted them up. They were told not to grieve as the joy of the Lord is their strength. Along with strength came restoration, forgiveness of sins, and a greater understanding of God’s will for them. The joy of the Lord provided people strength to reach for the provision of love and salvation from Him. Learn from the following scriptures…

Therefore with joy you will draw water From the wells of salvation.

Isaiah 12:3 (NKJV)

The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.

Zephania 3:17 (NKJV)

You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11 (NKJV)

Going back to the song, the lyrics used in verses 1 and 2 make sense and are indeed holy with their composition. The joy of our Lord is our strength and with it, we can spread His Word around the world, help Lord Jesus save the lost and unsaved souls, and free them all from the darkness of unbelief, religion, idolatry, traditions, rituals and Satan.

Furthermore, other lines from the lyrics such as You’re the joy no one can take away, You’re the peace inside I can’t explain, You’re the strength I need you will always be and The joy of the Lord, it makes me stronger, Greater, greater, my God is greater, His power, His power it make me stronger seamlessly connect with the holy scriptures mentioned here.

Now that we know the truth about the joy of our Lord, here is one more holy scripture to help deepen your faith in Him.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.

Ephesians 1:3-6 (NKJV)

Going back to the song My Strength, I can declare that its lyrics are indeed holy and written in close attention to the Holy Bible. Musically, My Strength is a smooth yet motivating worship song and Pastor Martha Munizzi’s lead performance of it is indeed lively. It is such a good song, I would suggest to church leaders and ministry organizers reading this to consider have their church band play My Strength as an opening song during Sunday worship services.

Finally, in concluding this CMA, embedded below is the official church performance video of My Strength held at EpicLife Church in Florida with Pastor Martha Munizzi leading the song with their church band. It is a very fine performance and it should help you get motivated in worshiping the Lord. For your strong faith in the Lord, always remember to have fellowship with the Lord Himself in private, practice Christian habits (click here and here), get planted and stay planted in a local church, and always keep on being the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

What to watch today for Christmas

Merry Christmas to all of you my readers and my fellow Christians! We honor and remember our Lord and Savior Jesus whose birth, life, sacrifice and resurrection remains highly significant to this day. It is during the Christmas season we should focus mainly on Lord Jesus and not allow ourselves to be distracted by the elements of this screwed-up world we live in. Christmas is all about Lord Jesus, nothing else and nobody else!

That being said, it is time for us all to take the opportunities of today to deepen our faith in the Lord and this is about what to watch this Christmas.

No, I am not talking about the venomous Hollywood movies that pretend to be about Christmas, nor those movies that used Christmas as a backdrop or a setting. In fact, I am not talking about movies at all.

What I am talking about are Christ-centered events and presentations that we can find online and easily access. For starters, we can warm up ourselves with the many Christmas musical performances by Hillsong Worship and a few from Planetshakers below.

Now we can focus on upcoming Christmas events. In fact, a few of them will happen today – December 24, hours from now to be precise! Let’s start with Hope Unlimited Church (HopeUC) and its Christmas Eve service which will start live streaming via YouTube today at 2:45 PM Manila Time (5:45 PM in Australia). For the newcomers reading this, HopeUC is headed by the famous pastor Darlene Zschech and her husband Mark.

Next is the Christmas Eve service of Hillsong Church which will start live streaming via YouTube at 3PM Manila time (6PM in Australia) today. Expect to see Brian and Bobbie Houston.

Tomorrow, Hillsong Church will have its Christmas Day service. It will start live streaming via YouTube at 6:30 AM Manila time (9:30 AM in Australia).

Another Christmas Eve event you should pay attention to is Yugto, to be organized and presented by Church of God, World Missions Philippines. This special event will start streaming live via the megachurch’s Facebook page and its YouTube channel tonight at 10PM in the Philippines (1AM of December 25 in Australia).

Each of the scheduled Christmas special events of HopeUC, Hillsong and Church of God, World Missions Philippines will include teachings of the Word of God, musical presentations, prayers and other special activities that viewers can focus on and deepen their faith in Lord Jesus.

In ending this, posted below are YouTube videos of the recent Christmas-related events that you might have missed. Enjoy them and remember to take steps when you want to deepen your faith in the Lord. Merry Christmas to you all and remember to keep on being the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

Christian Habits (Part 2)

Welcome back, my fellow faithful Christians. We are about to have another series of biblical lessons now. Today, I am about to continue the topic of the Christian habits we need to develop so that each of us can remain strong in faith with the Lord, be guided accordingly and keep on moving in the same path with God. Christian habits are necessary for us because they will keep us strong, protected and victorious under God who is watching us.

Previously, the Christian habits discussed were as follows: Prioritizing God and His Word, building up your faith, and speaking the Word of God. All the details for each of these habits are available for your reading in the past article published October 28, 2020.

With the recap done, we can now proceed on the next Christian habit.

Christian Habit #4 – Control your thought life

Remember when you were told to guard your mind and control what you think about? Such important are lessons are very true for us Christians but the difference is that the stakes are much higher because we are children of God and we have responsibilities to live up to.

The stakes are higher not because there are so many bad elements and distractions all around us. It is because Satan is persistent to ruin us through our thoughts by using deception on us and exploiting our human weaknesses. Although the stakes are higher, it certainly is not impossible for us to get edified with God’s Word and live with totally solid faith in the Lord which includes controlling our thought lives. As Christians, we don’t just control what we think about, we also focus on the Lord, remember the victory of Lord Jesus and live with it. To learn more, let’s look at the holy scripture below…

“This Book of Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”

Joshua 1:8 (NKJV)

The above scripture emphasizes that meditating on God’s Word is essential and that includes learning all the holy lessons and implementing them on your daily life. That being said, dedication and uncompromised focus on God’s Word will help you guard your thoughts no matter what happens around. Satan can try to bring you down by tempting you with riches or sex, or he can try to spark your anger to spread negativity around, or mess with your dreams with wicked visions, or manipulate you to worship idols which is a very unholy thing to do. The enemy will also try to deceive you into believing that prosperity from God is false, poverty is good and money is inherently evil. Satan will attack you with thoughts to prevent you from realizing the good life from the Lord and prevent you from getting planted in a local church chosen by God for you. Do not be surprised that the enemy will try to make you think about embracing Leftism, Communism, socialism, Marxism, homosexuality, atheism, abortion, religion, idolatry, traditions, rituals, secularism and other forms of evil just to set you apart from God. I should state that Satan loves to use worldly beings like fake news makers, Leftist activists and politicians, anarchists, terrorists, secularists, abusive publishers, irresponsible journalists, idolaters, atheists, religion-led hierarchies and wicked people to bring down Christians and keep misleading the many unsaved and lost souls to cause chaos.

That being said, do not despair because with God, you will be protected, get guided and be built up to be a very strong and uncompromising Christian. With the Lord, nothing is impossible! By having unwavering faith and living with God’s Word, your thoughts can be protected and, more notably, you can resist and reject Satan. Once you are edified, you can defeat Satan and make him walk away the loser he has always been.

Meditating with the words of the Lord can help you strengthen your soul and build up the defense of your mind. Remember always that thoughts really affect the words you speak, your physical and mental health, your joy and peace. Meditation will help you get rid of the negativity in your mind, and it also helps you to always open your heart to the Lord and have fellowship with him wholeheartedly. Now we can go to the next scripture…

casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

2 Corinthians 10:5 (NKJV)

The key word above is obedience as it signifies attentive hearing, to listen with compliant submission, assent and agreement. Obedience is essential for you to obey the commands of God and being obedient to Lord Jesus. With regards to controlling your thought life, healing will happen when you renew your mind with God. His Word is required and you need to believe in it to receive divine healing from Him.

Along the way, you must control your thoughts to strongly focus and believe in God. Declare God’s Word by speaking from your heart. Back to your mind, never let your thoughts be unanswered. If there are any thoughts that bother you because they go against God’s Word, answer them by standing up with Him. This also means avoiding focusing on negativity and anything that Satan attacks you with. Don’t let your guard down, be very strong and vigilant with your faith in God. Always focus on Him.

Christian Habit #5 – Anchor your heart through praise

Praise is to commend, to praise, to adore and to glorify. For us Christians, we praise only God the Heavenly Father, His Son Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit. By praising, we as God’s creations and children should also do it by heart (wholeheartedly). There is joy in fellowship with the Lord as seen in the holy scripture below…

O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You In a dry and thirsty land Where there is no water. So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.

Psalm 63:1-4 (NKJV)

As I learned from a local pastor who is totally edified under the Lord, praising is the highest form of prayer. Praise is also a language of faith. Singing is one way of praising our Heavenly Father, His Son Jesus our Lord and the Holy Spirit. In Hillsong Worship’s song King of Kings, there are notable lyrics emphasizing praise that go as follows: Praise the Father, Praise the Son, Praise the Spirit, Three in one.

More on praise, learn from the following holy scripture below…

I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

Psalm 34:1 (NKJV)

The above scripture is about the singing of praise is to be continual. Praise in the scripture refers to a hymn of praise or the singing spontaneous praise to God (refer to Psalm 40:3). You sing and make melody in your heart to Him. With a heart filled with praise, it will find expression in songs and words being spoken and really overflowing from our mouths.

More on anchoring our hearts through praise, learn from what Lord Jesus said in the holy scripture below…

“Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you praise, believe that you will receive them, and you will have them.”

Mark 11:24 (NKJV)

Through hyperbole, Lord Jesus stressed how essential and truly powerful faith is. This also involves our hearts. No matter how great or how disastrous your situation is right now, keep on being very faithful to Him, keep on praising Him and never back down! Being a strong Christian also means being fluent with praise, and you must remember this permanently. Here’s another holy scripture to learn from…

Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Psalm 103:1-6 (NKJV)

As seen in the above scripture, praising the Lord is essential! God is truly merciful and forgives us. God is loving and caring for us – His children and creations – He saves us and heals us inside out upon submitting to Him and getting born again. After all of these holy teachings, it is clear that you must make a habit of anchoring your heart through praise!

Christian Habit #6 – Praying in the spirit

Praying in the spirit is essential. Let’s start with the holy scripture below…

But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

Jude 1:20 (NKJV)

Praying in the holy spirit is vital for spiritual growth. Such praying includes praying in tongues (note: for deeper understanding read Chapters 1 to 10 of the Book of Acts, plus 1 Corinthians 14:4 and verse 14) which truly helps in building yourself up spiritually. Praying in tongues, which I included in my faith article about being in the privacy of your room for fellowship with God, is the doorway to the supernatural, and it allows you to go above the natural. Praying in tongues clears up the path ahead of you and help lead you to wisdom, revelation and encouragement. By praying in tongues, the Holy Spirit will move and fulfill God’s will for you. The truth is undeniable as you can see in the following holy scriptures below (note: key phrases in bold for emphasis)…

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Acts 2:1-4 (NKJV)

He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophecies edifies the church.

1 Corinthians 14:4 (NKJV)

For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.

1 Corinthians 14:14 (NKJV)

Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.

Acts 2:11 (NKJV)

For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.

1 Corinthians 14:2 (NKJV)

But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory.

1 Corinthians 2:7 (NKJV)

For with stammering lips and another tongue He will speak to this people, To whom He said, “This is the rest with which You may cause the weary to rest,” And, “This is the refreshing”, Yet they would not hear.

Isaiah 28:11-12 (NKJV)

The above scriptures are all related and connected. Praying in tongues is indeed praying in the spirit and the Holy Bible explains why we use a language (note: praying in tongues is done by using random syllables) others cannot understand but we are assured God hears us and understands us correctly. That being said, we should not ignore the signs of communication to us by the Holy Spirit. We should follow the lead of the Holy Spirit and you can learn from this scripture below…

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Romans 8:26 (NKJV)

Christian Habit #7 – Get rid of baggage

In this topic, baggage refers not to physical baggage but varied elements that set you back emotionally and spiritually. I’m talking about human factors influenced by this screwed-up world filled by many, many unsaved and lost souls. The types of baggage that set people back include unforgiveness, fear, anxiety, stress, sin, jealousy, unbelief, homosexuality, lust, envy, idolatry, pride, dishonesty and worry. I assure you that NONE of them should be part of your Christianity as all of them are not only human and worldly, but are also tools of Satan to set Christians back and separate them from God.

That being said, always remember that Lord Jesus paid the price to redeem us all so that we live on with His victory. As God’s children who got born again, we must always be very strong, edified, fearless, compassionate, loving, caring and aggressive members of the Body of Christ! You have problems, come to the Lord directly! You can get rid of baggage by learning from Lord Jesus in the holy scriptures below plus the scripture about the armor of God…

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.

John 14:1 (NKJV)

Don’t worry or surrender to your fear. For you’ve believed in God, now trust and believe in me also.

John 14:1 (TPT)

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. Peace, I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

John 14:26-27 (NKJV)

Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Ephesians 6: 11-13 (NKJV)

We Christians all have a race of faith to complete. In sports terms, foot-based racing involves generating a lot of speed and maintaining stamina to ensure you finish the race. In the sport of triathlon, you need to have speed, stamina, strength and carrying no heavy weight (baggage) to ensure you complete the swim, bike and run stages that the event is composed of. Going back to Christianity, baggage that set you back with your faith in God should absolutely be removed pronto and without hesitation! Your race in faith is essential! Learn from this final scripture below in the New King James Version and the Passion Translation with key parts in bold for emphasis…

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)

As for us, we have all of these great witnesses who encircle us like clouds. So we must let go of every wound that has pierced us and the sin we so easily fall into. Then we will be able to run life’s marathon race[d with passion and determination, for the path has been already marked out before us.

We look away from the natural realm and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection. His example is this: Because his heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be his, he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation, and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!

Hebrews 12:1-2 (TPT)

So there you have it! This completes my current two-part teaching about Christian habits each of us must do as we live by God’s Word (the Holy Bible) and continue to pursue the Lord for holiness, enlightenment and guidance. We are truly the Body of Christ. Right now, the seven Christian habits discussed as a whole set are: Prioritizing God and His Word, building up your faith, speaking the Word of God, control your thought life, anchor your heart through praise, praying in the spirit, and get rid of baggage.

From this point on, I would like to reach out to the lost and the unsaved people reading this. You can save yourselves by submitting to the Lord willingly. No force and no coercion here. You have time and freedom to decide to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior. For those who have decided to get born again now, please read the instructions and follow the prayer that I learned from our pastor.

Are you ready? Firstly, open your heart to the Lord and pray this simple prayer in sincerity from your heart:

Dear God,

I believe that Jesus is Your Son, and that He died on the cross to pay the penalty of my sins. I believe that Jesus has been raised from the dead and that He is alive! Right now, I call on the name of Jesus. Jesus, come into my heart. I receive You as my personal Lord and Savior. Forgive me of my sins and cleanse me by the power of Your blood. Thank You for saving me and giving me eternal life! Help me now to follow Your plan for my life. Amen.

Congratulations! You are now a child of God! You have received Holy Spirit in your heart! This is easily your greatest decision ever made and also the greatest miracle of your life. Always praise, thank and honor the Lord. No more darkness in your life caused by politics, radicalism, toxicity, rebellion, religion, unbelief, evil, idolatry, traditions and rituals! Leave behind the darkness of your life and don’t look back to it. Remember that idolatry is evil, Purgatory is a lie, penance is a deception and Satan always uses religion and unbelief to prevent people from being saved by the Lord.

With Lord Jesus, you are already moving forward and the best is yet to come! You also have a personal relationship with God, a relationship that is strictly off-limits to others (even to your household members or biological family members).

With your new life realized, make an effort to get yourself copy of the Holy Bible (start with New King James Version), study it and apply its lessons into your life no matter what situation you are in right now. I also recommend you to join a Christian church near you and find your place in the spiritual family.  Be planted when the Lord shows you the way! Worship the Lord together with them and always remember that faith, not religion, is essential in your personal relationship with God.

The Holy Bible is the ultimate authority and nothing else comes close. Remember always that Lord Jesus did not die on the cross to start religion. He died to redeem us all and showed that we must be led by faith in Him, faith in the Holy Spirit and faith in God the Heavenly Father. He rose from the dead and made His earthly presence felt once more to those who believed in Him. Lord Jesus ascended to Heaven and He promised to return in the future. His return is what we must always remember and keep living with holiness under the watch of God.

In ending this, here are some videos of Christian worship music for you to enjoy and praise the Lord with. Always be the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus! 

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