Human value has become subjective based on varying factors: economic status, role in society, and public view among others. In reality, back to our origin, human value is the same for all of us—we were formed by God in His image and likeness.
So God created human beings in His own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
Genesis 1:27 (NLT)
We are not machines, not mere flesh. We’re made in God’s image. Every person made in His image has value and dignity. Each life created in God’s image deserves to be preserved on the basis of God’s ordained value upon each person’s life.
This image reflects the authority and power God entrusts to each of us. How valuable is this image? No one can say except the reality that Jesus Christ had to sacrifice Himself in order to restore it. Precious life was given in exchange for it.
Human rights have to reflect the value God has given. Preservation of life has to be evident. This is a time when we need to be ‘advocates’ to preserve our value not just as Filipinos, but most importantly, our value divinely assigned to us by God. This is why we need to be part of nation-building to advocate for this value to be preserved.
If the Bible has an obvious inclusion in the narrative, that’s national or tribal leadership. God used Moses to bring an enslaved sector of Egypt out of injustice. That required his God-directed leadership to move them out of where they were. Various kings and prophets have led people to either worship God or not in the Old Testament. In the New Testament, God elected twelve apostles to carry on the mission with His Son, Jesus Christ. However, not all leaders want to carry out God’s purpose. Caesar, for instance, wanted to be worshiped over God.
As citizens of the Philippines, we have been given the role to participate in a political structure such as ours, where we can vote for the next leaders of our nation. As Christ’s followers, it requires for us to prayerfully participate in it not because we are afraid for what’s to come, but, by faith, we take part to advocate for human value.
Our vote is a statement that we are still participating in God’s work to redeem His people in this nation and in particular the people groups who would benefit much from good governance: the poor, the suffering, the ones suffering from injustice. All of us, especially these people groups, will benefit from a good government.
When we see their God-ordained value, we begin to have the zeal to get out of our comfort zones and take part in nation-building. It is when we realize their value has to be restored that we can’t tolerate darkness to rule, so we declare and work toward God’s kingdom, which embodies shalom (peace and wholeness) here on earth as it is in heaven.
As citizens of God’s kingdom, we have a responsibility to honor God by serving our nation, and one of the ways we exercise this is by voting. While we may not be able to know who the perfect candidate is—because there’s none—we can prayerfully choose who may potentially be used by God to bring His kingdom here on earth as it is in heaven.
When you exercise your right to vote, you have advocated for the dignity of the poor and the oppressed—for them to be given due attention as is required by their God-given value.
“Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.”
Isaiah 1:17 (NLT)
From the time I responded to the call of God to go into full-time ministry, I was never the same again. I remember the day when I finally said yes. I could no longer imagine anything beyond a life dedicated to serving God as a campus missionary in Far Eastern University. Little did I know that my journey in obeying God’s call would be filled with uncertainty, mystery, adventure, and surprises—all wrapped up in beautiful gifts that came my way, time and again: transitions.
You may not have gone into full-time ministry like I have, yet your calling is no less important. In the same way that I needed to seek God to know if I should work in the ministry or when it was time for me to move on to another season, you most likely also asked Him to direct you to where you are right now. And you will need to keep seeking Him as doors open or opportunities for redirection happen.
Transitions are inevitable in life. Every transition calls for change—something that I didn’t really look forward to when I was younger. There’s always a new Victory group to start, a new campus to reach, a new role to learn, a new location to pray for, a new team to build relationships with, or a new season to embrace. But I learned to love transitions after several years of serving in the ministry, because they taught me to trust God rather than my own plans, timeline, and capacity. Your calling to be where you are now came in a unique way. It’ll be unique as well when God tells you it’s finally time to move on to a new season.
Some important lessons that I’ve learned over the years:
So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12 (ESV)
“Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered— how fleeting my life is. You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath. We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing.”
Psalm 39:4–6 (NLT)
“My son Solomon, whom alone God has chosen,
is young and inexperienced; and the work is great,
because the temple is not for man but for the Lord God.”
1 Chronicles 29:1 (NKJV)
How will I know if it’s time to transition?
“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?”
Isaiah 43:19 (ESV)
How can I be sure that this desire is from the Lord?
If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you.
He will not rebuke you for asking.
James 1:5 (NLT)
The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.
Proverbs 12:15 (ESV)
What do I do while I wait on God?
Every transition is beautiful when God ordains it. There’s beauty in it when you learn to trust God and choose to obey. Oh, I pray that you witness how beautiful it is when you finally see the bigger picture of what He is doing in your life. I believe that every transition is a promotion from God: to be entrusted with more, to learn more, and above all else, to know God more. I am grateful that in the midst of all the change, I can hold on to this:
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Hebrews 13:8 (ESV)