Psalm 103:1-5 (ESV)

1 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 iniquity,
    who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
    who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
    so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Recently we got to sing a song titled “All His Benefits” in the Grace Worship Choir, with music by Paul Baloche. As today is Thanksgiving, what a great day it is to thank God for all that He has done.

Thank You God for…

  1. saving a weak and foolish sinner
  2. bringing me to know You
  3. giving Your son Jesus to die on the cross for my sins
  4. rising from the dead and giving hope for the future
  5. giving me a new heart that loves You
  6. giving me Your Word in the Bible
  7. being a gracious God, who has given infinitely beyond what I deserve
  8. saving me from the lusts of my heart over and over again
  9. for Your continual forgiveness of my sins
  10. allowing me to experience sickness so that I can praise You for health
  11. reminding me again of what is most important – You!
  12. my family, who You love so much.
  13. the healing You have brought to my family all these years, and will continue to do
  14. the gift of music to praise You and be reminded of great truths from the Bible
  15. bringing my dad back to be able to live with us locally
  16. giving me time to read the Chinese Bible with my mom daily
  17. bringing me to Your Word in times of doubt and heaviness of heart
  18. loving feeble and frail sinners
  19. being the good Master, Redeemer and Friend
  20. giving my family a home
  21. giving me a place to live near my church
  22. being able to live close to family and frineds
  23. the freedom to choose to love You
  24. being able to ask You for a heart that would be wholly Yours
  25. pray at all times, coming before You with any prayer and petition
  26. the gift of sleep
  27. the piano, what a beautiful instrument
  28. hymns and songs of praise that point me back to You
  29. technology, which allows all these mediums of praise to come to me so easily
  30. being the righteous King
  31. making Yourself known to sinful man through Your Word
  32. being so patient with Your simpleminded sheep
  33. giving me a flexible job that allows me to do other things
  34. giving me a boss who is fair
  35. the joy of being able to trust in You and rest in You
  36. the name of Jesus, the sweetest of all names
  37. the grace, O for grace, to know Him more
  38. the ability to give thanks to You for all that You have done in the past
  39. for giving me life, sustaining my life, and bringing me to know You
  40. helping me to see my sins and turn away from them
  41. protecting me as I was growing up from greater forms of sin that I could have feel into
  42. giving me a brother that I can grow up together with
  43. the heart to pray continually for my family, whom You love so much
  44. the reminder to turn my eyes to Jesus, so that the things of this world would grow dim
  45. the ability to gaze into the beauty of Your Son in the Bible, the light of His glory and grace
  46. teaching me to love and speak Mandarin, that it may be used for Your glory
  47. bringing much healing from the hurts caused by my past life of sin
  48. helping me to see my pride and continually humbling me
  49. bringing me to love Your Word, though I used to draw on the Bible and not treasure it
  50. the anticipation of arriving home in heaven, where there will no more fear and death.
  51. reminding me that I Need Thee Every Hour, every second of this life
  52. bringing me to grow up with music in the house with my mom on the piano and playing the alto saxophone (though I didn’t know why at the time)
  53. drawing me to You
  54. the trials and troubles of life, which bring me back to You
  55. giving this sinner the desire to reconcile past relationships that I’ve broken off
  56. the joy of singing and being able to write songs to You
  57. teaching me how to play the guitar
  58. Your Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretched like me.
  59. finding the lost, giving sight to the blind
  60. being able to give You thanks
  61. saving me from false religion
  62. the promises of Your Word, which are true
  63. delicious food
  64. the church and the joyful fellowship of the saints
  65. loving those who are perishing
  66. having mercy on some, when You could have punished us all
  67. the privilege of praying with others in the Sunday evening prayer group
  68. the friendships and the way You have lead me to Men of the Word through them
  69. the hospitality of D and B
  70. getting to know and love my Japanese family
  71. brothers and mentors who love You and point me to You
  72. being able to spend this Thanksgiving with Your people and those You love
  73. a car that may be used for Your glory
  74. exercise to keep the body You gave me healthy
  75. the Holy Spirit, which leads me and convicts me
  76. being able to say, both now and in the future (by Your grace), that It is Well with my Soul
  77. giving trials for my good, working all things for my good
  78. being able to meet the church from other countries, seeing Your work there
  79. the day when my faith shall become sight
  80. the day when You will return and make right all that is currently wrong
  81. the time when I will get to live life with my wife and children
  82. the unknown future, but knowing that it is in Your hands
  83. bringing older brothers into my life as my example
  84. giving me a name that points to You as salvation, even when I did not know or care for You
  85. teaching me to build My Hope on nothing less, but Jesus and His righteousness
  86. being my support in the overwhelming flood of trials in life
  87. hands that can type out these praises
  88. a heart that echos these praises
  89. eyes that can see what You have made and give praise to You
  90. teaching me to cherish time, knowing that the days are evil
  91. teaching me to read more and more, learning from those who went before me
  92. teaching me how to play the guitar so that I can praise You
  93. clothes, food and shelther
  94. the opportunity to pray for and think about others
  95. the reminder today to praise You
  96. a heart that praises the Father, Spirit and Son. the Holy Trinity, our God three in one
  97. being able to cry out “Abba, Father”
  98. the freedom to do something like this list of praise
  99. the joy of bowing the knee before You
  100. For Your love, as far as the east is from the west have You forgiven my sins
  101. a laptop to work and glorify You, even protecting it from robbers
  102. glasses to help me see
  103. for being my Friend. What a privilege to carry everything to You in prayer.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!








Found a couple of tips I wrote to myself as a student. I hope you find these practical and useful!

Tips learned to study more effectively


1.      Zoom out/choose a smaller font when reading on a computer. It is less stressful on the eyes (don’t need to move as much), and less time is spent in scrolling through on the article.

2.      Read through the entire article’s bold points first, then read the whole article. Try to finish the article in one sitting to get the context. Highlight/ underline/ take notes after every section in the article. I find that splitting a reading and coming back later I waste some time trying to remember what I had read before.

3.      Make blocks of time to study to stay focused. Sort of like the previous tip, beginning to study is the hardest part; therefore, having to “prepare to study” less times will make studying less stressful.

4.      Remind myself why I study – God, family, future family

5.      Take breaks In between studying, not during. Take meaningful breaks, meaning do something that will recharge me to continue my work. For me it is taking a walk, napping, planning my to-do…

6.      Study (sometimes) with friends – This is a great way to encourage each other to work hard and remind myself why I want to study hard. To love my friends. Be wise in who to study with and when, sometimes friends just want to hang out (which is fine, but if I need to study, I better go study)

7.      Go to your professor/T.A.’s Office Hours. Even if I don’t have any questions, I can learn much from my fellow students. Also a great time to ask

8.      If all these methods don’t work, perhaps I was not meant for school. There are over ten thousand other ways to make a living that do not require a bachelor’s degree.

9.      Sleep/Time management -, Though it is tempting to neglect sleep to study for a test the next day, a neglect of sleep will hinder not only your ability to take the test, but possibly hinder your entire week as you are fatigued and not able to think at your best, making unwise decisions.

10.  Form study groups – Get to know my fellow classmates and keep each other accountable, encouragining one another to do well!

11. Use caffeine wisely, caffeine before 1pm is less likely to effect my sleep.


Some reminders to myself from teaching sunday school to children.

General Tips:

  1. Pray for the students, since only God can change hearts.
  2. Know the lesson, allow God to teach me before I teach the kids. How can I teach them something I don’t understand?
  3. Don’t ask simple yes, no questions. Ask questions that allow them to come up with thoughtful answers!
  4. Be colorful and loud in your expressions! Remember the teachers that you thought were boring? Don’t be monotone, unexpressive like them!
  5. Play with the children, get to know them outside the classroom. Show them that you care!
  6. Remember that you are not alone in the children’s ministry, be active in bringing children to meet and know other brothers and sisters too. Like introducing a new friend!


Pray for them!

  1. Remember they are children. Though they do not understand now, be firm in discipline so that they won’t be all over the place. Once children see that you allow them to bend the rules, they will all join in and get worse and worse. “Give them an inch, they will take a mile.”
  2. Get to know them outside the class! Children who have a relationship with you may tend to listen more attentively.

Hanging out with children:

  1. If you do not have much experience playing/interacting with children, try asking “Can I play? What are you playing?” Young children never seem to run out of games or things to do. (Isn’t it funny how the older we are, the harder it is to keep ourselves entertained? Moral of the story is to ‘never grow up!’)

I got to share my testimony last week at the Men’s group for my church’s fellowship, here it is. Since I was baptized in 2009 I had not had a testimony typed out. Thank You God for the opportunity to share of what You have done and are doing.


Name: Joshua H.C. Wu

Years at GCC: A little over two years

Ministry involvement: Men of the Word, Doulos Fellowship, Worship Choir, Sunday evening prayer group, Chinese Bible Fellowship

Marital Status: Single, would like to be married

Occupation: Commercial Real Estate, selling Dental Practices

Testimony (To the Men of the Word Men’s Fellowship at Grace Community Church)

Dear brothers, my name is Joshua Wu, and this is the testimony of God’s saving grace in my life. I was born in Texas and grew up in Louisiana. Though I went to a private Baptist School and Church, nothing about Jesus ever stuck with me. My parents would occasionally take me to Chinese church to make friends but otherwise nothing about the Bible was. In this period of time I never thought about God at all, only about girls and video games.

In 2004 my dad’s job had him return to Taiwan, where he would be for the next 8 years. The rest of my family moved out here to California, where I began the 8th grade. My younger brother and I stopped attending church for the next 3 years; occasionally my cousins would invite us out to spend time with them and go to church.

When did you receive Jesus Christ as Savior?

In 2008 they invited us to a church retreat, where I met a cute girl so I started going to church again. It was in this time that brothers at the church spent time with me to read the Bible. Through this I became aware of God and of my sins, of Jesus’ love for me in dying on the cross. From the Bible I started becoming aware of the beauty of God’s creation and His daily blessings in my life. No one had ever loved me before like Jesus did, which prompted me to accept him as my Lord and Savior. In September of 2009 I was baptized. Over the next several years I started becoming very involved in my church with evangelism, teaching children’s sunday school and serving in leadership. I fought hard to get rid of my habitual sins. I had a strong desire to see my friends come to know God, with Proverbs 3:5-6 as my life verses. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.

Trials in my life:

During this period of time I was also going through highs and lows with depression. In  2010 a relationship that I desired could not happen, which led to much emotional pain. I saw different psychiatrists and Christian counselors who gave me anti-depressants and pointed me back to God’s love. In this trial God taught me the truths of Romans 8, that there is now no more condemnation for my sins, that nothing could ever separate me from His love. By God’s grace I was able to get through community college and transfer to UCLA, which is the first time I lived away from home. I continued to go back to my home church on the weekends, but with my newfound freedom and lack of accountability I started to indulge in entertainment and my lusts. I fell deeper into depression.

Help from other Believers:

In the summer of 2014 while looking for a solution to the depression I met some friends who attended Grace on Campus at UCLA who invited me out to Grace Community Church. It was here for the first time that I heard about Biblical counseling; before the counselors would tell me that I wasn’t a bad person and that the problem was due to my past and my circumstances. At Grace Church the counselors, after hearing of what I was doing told me to turn from my sins and pursue holiness to get out of the depression. This counsel angered me because I believed that I was doing the best I could to love God. I continued to try and live as a good Christian but I kept returning back to my habitual sins. Hours of intentional sin soon became days where I would stay in my room and keep away from people. After confessing my sins to my apartment mates, I soon stayed away from my apartment so I could continue in my pursuit of pleasure. I started to become afraid at who I was. I had always believed that I was a sinner, but in this period of time God was teaching me apart from His changing of my sinful heart I would have never chosen Him. Romans 3:10 tells me that “there is no one righteous, not even one.” Made aware of my helplessness, I called out to God to have mercy on me, to help me to turn from my sins and to love Him. He did this radically through a trial soon to come.

A Reality Check:

In February of this year I got a phone call from my mom telling me that my grandma had fallen into a coma and had 3 days left to live. This was devastating news to me because she had cared deeply for me and I knew that she was not a Christian. The consequences of my sin became clear to me. All those years I had spent living to satisfy myself I could have been spending in sharing the love of God with my family. On my knees, I asked for one last chance to share the gospel with her. God, in His mercy, opened the door to be able to go to Taiwan and spend time by her side, prolonging her life a week and a half longer than the doctors had predicted. In that time I got to share the gospel with her, begging her to turn from her sin and turn to Jesus for forgiveness and hope after death. I do not know if she could hear, but through that experience I learned that in spite of all the sin I had committed against God, His grace is greater still. Through God’s love for me in this trial I better understood that He works all things for my good, and that He wants me to turn from my sin and to know and love Him whole heartily.

Since that trial the sins that I had so loved do not have the same power as it once had over me. The depression has all but disappeared; in fact, I learned that I had been using the depression as an excuse for my sin. The temptation to sin and self-pity is still here, but as Romans 5:6 tells me, That while we were still helpless, at just the right time, Christ died for the ungodly. Before Christ came into my life I was His enemy. Yet all the sins I had committed, am committing now, and will commit, God has forgiven them by placing the punishment on His Son at the cross. He was looking for me when I wasn’t looking for Him. Why then should I continue to indulge in the very sins that Jesus died to save me from? Instead of just trying to stop sinning, which by itself will not work, God has been teaching me to look to the Christ my Savior for the power to turn from sin and obey Him.

What I shared tonight is just a glimpse of all that God has been doing in my life. He has been healing my relationship with my parents, breaking my pride and my judgmental attitude, growing me to be more like His Son Jesus. He has been teaching me to trust and depend on Him in prayer. All of this is only possible because God had brought men into my life who shared the Bible with me, not only teaching me in how to study it, but by their godly examples showed me how to live as a Christian. May we all, as men, by God’s grace, strive to be like Jesus to our families, to our bosses and coworkers, to those who God brings into our lives. May we all, as men by God’s grace, follow the example of Jesus Christ to lead those around us to know God more, through our words and our actions. Thank You God.

His Robes for Mine (sung by choir)

“I cling to Christ and marvel at the cost.
Jesus forsaken, God estranged from God.
Bought by such love, my life is not my own.
My praise, my all, shall be for Christ alone.”

A beautiful song of Christ’s sacrifice in our stead.

Follow God is my Life on

Pictures of Grace

Hiking at Baden-Powell with these guys from Men of the Word. Grateful to be a able to spend time with godly men all day in the snow. Someone brought a bowl of noodles and hot water to the peak!

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