Dear False Lover (Part 2)

Dear False Lover (2),

Hi. Nope, you didn’t expect me to write you for the 2nd time. But I did. Surprise. Hindi ko sinasabayan ang mga stats and year end posts ng mga tao just cause it’s New Year, hindi din hyped yung emotions ko. In fact, pakiramdam ko mas matino na ako mag-isip ngayon. More reasonable than emotional. Emotional: on that note, I’m still a work in progress. Kaya thank God pa din, dahil may progress.

Medyo matagal na din since I last wrote you Dear False Lover (1), May of 2016. It’s been a year and a half. Madami ng nangyari sakin, and I’m sure sayo din. I’m sure? Well yes, cause I’d still check your Instagram once in a while. Not to weigh kung may nararamdaman pa ako para sayo, matagal na natin tinapos kung ano man yung meron tayo. Normal lang naman siguro maging curious paminsan-minsan.

So what’s the point? Why would I write you another letter? Well, eto na. I noticed that my first letter to you was too heavy. Parang galit na galit dahil sa sobrang sakit and sobrang bigat as if I was the only victim sa pag cameo natin sa buhay ng isa’t isa. Eh parehas lang naman tayong biktima ng sin, ni Satan. I noticed too that I blamed it all to you. I don’t even remember kung humingi na ba ako ng tawad sayo. So that’s the purpose of me writing you again, para mag-sorry.

I’m deeply sorry that my heart was full of pain and pride at the same time. I’m sorry I had to go through the process of healing, along with that involved me hating you. I didn’t acknowledge my sin. I was insecure. I was motivated by selfishness. I was desperate. I was a false lover myself. I was lost. Kaya sobrang sorry cause I blamed you for the sin I chose to make. Gusto ko din sabihin that I’ve already forgiven you. Kapal naman ng mukha ko if I wouldn’t forgive, kung si God nga napatawad ako sa dami ng kasalanan ko.

Hindi ako naniwala na time heals, I believe only Jesus can absolutely do that. Or maybe He heals in His’ time? Pero yun nga, Jesus heals. It took me a while to digest all these. But I’m grateful I reached this point. I’m grateful I’m able to finally say sorry, forgive you, and myself. Sana napatawad mo na din ako.

Ang saya ko to start the year with this blog. Kasi diba makakapagsimula lang naman tayo ng maayos at tama kung mapayapa yung heart natin. The Father’s forgiveness through the Son set me free. Forgiveness is always freeing, it’s always the key to true healing. Easier said than done. Pero legit. I can attest now, totoo. I’m free. Plus, I can’t really consider myself a Christian kung wala sa sistema ko ang pagpapatawad at paghingi ng tawad.

Alam mo yung song na Grace Changes Everything ng Victory Worship?

“There’s no sin too great

There’s no pain too deep

The cross declares it is done

There’s no shame too real

That His love won’t heal

Forever the victory is won”

It is finished. Christ took it all, the pain, the shame, the anger, the pride in my heart, the bitterness, my sin. The old is gone, the new has come. Kaya again, I’m sorry, my brother in Christ.

O sya. Yun lang. Praying for grace upon grace upon grace sa buhay mo. God bless you!

Sincerely,

(Insert Name)

Mali, mali. Isa pa.

Sincerely,

Ria

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10 Things I Appreciate About My Job

I’ve been forgetting to be grateful recently since my desire to come home to Manila on my 1st monthly days off didn’t push through. So now I decided to have a quick review on some of the things I’m grateful for, cause there’s really nothing to complain about. I am blessed, regardless.

These are 10 tiny things I appreciate about my job.

1. Short and neat nails – I’m not really a fan of nail polish. Is that weird? I don’t like painting my nails and I’m sooo happy that my work doesn’t require me to have nail polish on. I have the option to paint it red, or keep it short and clean.

2. I like that I do not serve alcohol on board. PRAISE GOD.

3. I have at least 5 consecutive days off every month. Not all Airlines give this opportunity. I have no excuse, there’s time to pause and ponder on life on a monthly basis. Praying that I’ll always be able to use these days off wisely & purposefully.

4. There’s washing machine and dryer in the villa where I stay, w/c is my home for about half a year. There’s grace in doing the laundry. My hands won’t hurt anymore! Hehe.

5. My job forces me to be domesticated. It allows me to learn how to cook, wash dishes, do the laundry, clean my room, budget my groceries. In short, it prepares me for future marriage. Lol.

6. Free gym membership 24/7.

7. Friendly neighbourhood. I’m neighbours with my batch mates -aka- my family. See? There’s home away from home!

8. It’s been more than a week since I started flying and I don’t feel any “seniority” right here. I guess it’s also all in the mind, but so far, I’m very grateful that my colleagues are so nice and helpful. Diversity of nationality brings out enthusiasm in me. There’s a lot to learn from Egyptians, Tunisians, Bosnians, Malaysians, etc.

9. I’m seeing lives change. I won’t go into details anymore on this one, but I see GOOD FRUIT. (Christians, you feel me?)

10. My job as a whole makes me Spiritually driven, it makes me hold on to Christ even more. It makes me suffer beautifully w/ homesickness as it allows me to grow even more in love & intimately with my Almighty Father.

Sometimes, it’s the little things that the Lord allow that enable us to truly appreciate life. My prayer is for me to continually delight in the Lord & get even more intimate with Him. For everywhere in the world could be a home when I am founded & deeply rooted in my Saviour. Yes. Christ is my Home.

When Enemies Become Roomies

At the beginning of our Training, Frey and I didn’t have a good first impression of each other. I tried assessing the situation, getting my heart checked and asking God why, we’re both Christians and yet we don’t seem to get along well. I immediately judged her and thought that her level of belief in Christ was shallow. How dare I assume that, kapal ko diba? Our first month gave me such a hard time, seeing her in class everyday felt heavy. Sobrang awkward kami sa isa’t isa. Our conversations were empty, and filled with insecurities and pride. Our faces both look unapproachable to some, “mataray-looking” as they say, and maybe that was the reason why we didn’t click right away; we saw a bit of ourselves in each other. I actually felt with Frey what many people would usually tell me on their first encounter with me— ang taray ng aura, hindi ko keri. So there, nag backfire sakin yung feeling na yun.

I’d always believe that first impressions do not last, because I grew up always being mistaken as a bad girl for how I look. But you know what I realized lately? They’re actually right, I am bad, and even worse than what they thought of. I really am bad apart from Christ. I wouldn’t have the effort to smile at people, to remember names & to intentionally build friendship. I’d be picky with my friends, build walls & limitations within my own circle. I would be prideful, though deep down inside I wanted to get to know people, I wouldn’t talk to them because I wanted them to be the first to approach me. Ang OA diba?Sobrang prideful. Ang dami kong possible friendship in the past na pinalagpas dahil sa pride ko. So again, I am absolutely bad when Christ doesn’t rule & reign in me. But HEY HEY HEY it doesn’t have to be that way anymore, right? Having been a new creation in Christ, I must mirror His holiness. “As obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires of your former ignorance. But as the One who called you is holy, you also are to be holy in all your conduct; for it is written, Be holy, because I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:14-16 — Wouldn’t this be a solid rebuke to us Christians? I don’t know about you, but this one heavily slapped me. I got so used to putting the blame on others and judging them without being aware of my own attitude. I wouldn’t consider having a character check because I’d innately & selfishly think I that know better. Remember what Christ says in Matthew 7:5? “Hypocrite! First take the log out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.” Ouch! Repent! But of course, GRACE ABOUNDS. Praise God for searching my heart and knowing my anxious thoughts, for seeing offensive ways in me and always leading me in the everlasting way.

The tension between Frey and I subsided when I prayed for God to change my heart, (while I didn’t know she was actually praying for herself too), when I confessed the situation to my dgroup in the Philippines & asked them to pray for me. One of my devotions also compelled me to take action, it says that the way for people to know that we are Christ’s disciples is when we love each other; *gasps* basic knowledge in Christianity that I always forget; I cannot say that I’m the Lord’s if I do not love, for God is love Himself. Eventually, God opened an opportunity for us to get to know each other better. It began during our service training, when we didn’t have a choice but to share a meal because we both love seafood, and the stock was limited. Haha! I know, medyo-PG. Who would have thought na food lang pala ang mag-rreconcile samin. But what really brought us two closer is that towards the end of our training, we didn’t have a choice but to be each other’s room mate. Irresistible grace nanaman. I had two room mates before her (Ajla and Dawn, I love and miss them!) and when my 2nd room mate Dawn graduated and moved to Riyadh, I had no choice but to move in the same room with Frey. God moves in funny and mysterious ways talaga! That time, I told Him, “I don’t know what exactly You are up to, but I’m excited & I trust You, so bring it on.”

It’s been 2 weeks being in the same room with my former enemy. I won’t go into details on how it has been, but I feel sooo blessed having Frey as my room mate now. We cry and laugh together, we pray together every night before we sleep. We both acknowledge that we are saved by Grace. We both apologised and asked for each other’s forgiveness. We now call each other sisters in Christ and we believe we’ve got eternity to make chikahan about His goodness. Grabe, madalas kaming napupuyat cause we’re both talkative and we love to share lots and lots of testimonies. Indeed, all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose. God is so intentional in making us live in harmony with one another so that we may glorify Him in Christ with a united spirit. (Romans 8:28; 15:5-6) How amazing!

Two more days before we move to Riyadh. We’re both aware that it won’t be easy, there’s more to discover in our newly blooming friendship, not just between us but also among our batch mates, and the thousands of colleagues we are yet to encounter. We’ve got a lot of adjustments to do, we may disappoint each other in the future but we know that the battle isn’t in the flesh but in the spirit, and as long as we have Christ in our center, we’re cool. Christ is our Peacemaker! Yay! ☺️

I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you must also love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35

Dealing with Closed Doors

Do you know somebody who graciously dealt with blocked opportunities? Me, I know one. It’s myself. Lalayo pa ba ako? Before it crosses your mind that I’m being boastful here, let’s first give emphasis to the word “graciously”, from it’s root word GRACE, which means “underserved favor”, something that is not produced by human effort, but has been freely given to men by God. You may check out and ponder on these verses to learn more about Grace: (Romans 3:20-24; Ephesians 4:7; Ephesians 2:8-10) So maybe I’m boasting now, but that’s only because of what He has done through me. Apart from it, I can do nothing.

But really, it’s not like I’ve mastered dealing with rejections, terminations, and unanswered prayers. It’s just that over the years, God has taught me to endure, has given me the grace to do so, & to face the reality that rejections may actually be okay for my growth as a Christian.

Through Christ, I’ve learned to have a better perspective on rejection. I have a long list of closed door experiences: not getting the job I wanted, joining a national pageant for years and not being able to win a crown, not making it to fashion show go-sees for not being tall enough, not being liked by my childhood crush (Praise God!!! 😝), not making it as a lead actor for a broadway theatre show back in college, being denied to enter the United States when I was 17 years old, and a whooole lot more. — I used to question Him a lot for all these. And I used to be so horrible at dealing with rejections. I’d ask, why wouldn’t He give what I wanted if He really loves me? I’d be filled with shame and bitterness deep inside. Shame produced by my pride, and bitterness birthed by my innately ungrateful heart. These would be so evident back when when I did not clearly understand grace yet.

The thing about my rejected opportunities is most of the time I would want them so “BADLY”. I unawarely wanted them for the wrong reasons. Philippians 2:3-4 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Most of the things I wanted so much to attain were selfish passions. Like in not winning a crown, I’m not the only candidate in any pageant, if I call myself a Christian and feel bad for others’ reign just because I didn’t win, then that would make me a hypocrite. But hey, Jesus died for me already, so I shall no longer live for myself. It’s hard and it may seem impossible to not live for yourself, but nothing is impossible with Him. I mean, I would see it in my life now little by little. Back then, my eyes would be so focused on physicality, material possessions, earthly success stories, good image. But what’s the point of attaining all these if I won’t be able to bring them all to heaven? I’m not saying it’s wrong to be successful, but to wanna be one for selfish reasons, is what makes it wrong. In fact, it is in vain; for only what’s done for Christ truly lasts. (Romans 7:18) I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.<

I have read a book on how the early Christians selflessly lived their lives for Jesus, and it challenged me in a good way. If they could do it, then maybe I can too. Besides, we only have One God, we only glorify & worship One King, with the same great power and ability to transform & use us for His glory. I’m not saying that I’m going to be martyred for my faith, but if that happens, I pray God gives me the grace to endure. Here’s the link to the free ebook, you might be interested: A Little Book on the Reformation, by Nathan Busenitz.⚡️

So here’s how I dealt with some of the closed doors in my life:

1. Seek Godly counsel – I’d go directly to mentors/people with sound wisdom. (Proverbs 11:14) Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in abundance of counselors there is victory. Graciously, God gave me the right people to go to. When I was terminated at PAL, people helped me reset my plans. I have friends from the aviation industry who helped me move forward, advised that I apply for other Airlines, and Spiritual mentors who covered me with prayers.

2. Accept rebuke. In relation to no.1, I make sure that I honour my mentors, asses their advise, be encouraged by their prayers and accept their rebuke when necessary. (Most of the time, rebukes are very much needed for me. Haha.) I make sure I go to someone who won’t feed my ego, but will really be transparent enough to tell me what’s wrong & why certain things won’t go my way. (Proverbs 15:31-33) He whose ear listens to the life-giving reproof will dwell among the wise. He who neglects discipline despises himself, But he who listens to reproof acquires understanding. The fear of the LORD is the instruction for wisdom, And before honor comes humility.

3. Pray unceasingly. Now that God has been enabling me to be enticed more on heavenly matters than the the earthly & temporary ones, I believe my prayer life has improved. I learned to pray for His will to be done and not be pushy with what I want. So how do I know His will? Through His Word. Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; but you shall meditate therein day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success.” Also in Romans 10:17 “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” — I’m constantly learning to pray the right prayers. I no longer get as disappointed as I would be back then (especially during my early pageant years in 2013), because now, I’d graciously learn to rely on His will, having His Word as my life’s authority. Reading the Word of God everyday allows me to learn and understand His will for me.

Guys, being a Christian is really dying to self. (I knoow, mahirap talaga!😭) It may not be something we learn overnight, and not something we swiftly attain unless Grace does it to us. But pray unceasingly, will you? Be patient as you wait for His answer. Pray not to be bitter, pray to always be humbled. You know another thing that makes me so grateful about rejection? Through the personal rejections I had, I’d see how much the Lord has protected me. He knows my heart and what I’m capable of doing when I do things outside His will. I’m not saying that you are doing things out of His will, but if closed doors frustrate you, I pray you trust Him all the more. Faith is fully believing in what you hope for and being certain of what you do not see. That doesn’t mean believing merely in your dreams & goals in life, but believing that God is above it all and being certain that He is your ultimate goal. One more thing, rejection could be His way of disciplining us. Guess what the Word has to say about discipline: Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated but healed instead.Hebrews 12:9-12 I’m grateful that I landed to an extent of grace that is too beautiful, healthful & helpful for my Christian growth that left me no room for self condemnation, that gave me ample time to be truly sorry for my sin, accept the things I’ve done wrong and change what I can change — by grace, through faith, in Christ. Grace also taught me that no matter how much goodness I do in this world, it will never be the basis of my salvation — for my goodness degrades the truth. I can never attain what my God has already done for me. Because even in trying to do so, thoughts of evil will enter my head, a little bit of selfishness, competitiveness, greediness, lust of the flesh and the heart. Sure, they do not materialise, I get to kill the ideas before it becomes actual sin, but it is still sin. That’s why I’m excited for the day where I’ll go to a place where none of the ugliness and filthiness of any man’s heart will exist. I’m excited for heaven. “He will destroy death forever. The Lord God will wipe away the tears from every face and remove His people’s disgrace from the whole earth, for the Lord has spoken.”Isaiah 25:8 Let’s rejoice with opportunities that didn’t unfold right in front of us. Greater things are yet to come, may not be in this world, but in our true home. Every Christian’s citizenship isn’t in this world, we’ve got eternity waiting for us, heaven!!!❤️

So if you have been raised with the Messiah, seek what is above, where the Messiah is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on what is above, not on what is on the earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with the Messiah in God. When the Messiah, who is your life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. Colossians 3:1-4

My Turbulent FA Journey

It’s been exactly a year since I became a Flight Attendant for Philippine Airlines; and though I only flew for 5months with my country’s flag carrier, I will always be grateful for what the Lord has taught me through my “turbulent” journey with PAL.

I never knew I would be in love with hospitality/customer service job 35,000 feet above sea level until the PAL opportunity came along right after my final year at Bb. Pilipinas (2016). If you were able to read my blog (A Necessary Detour & While the Failing Continues, The Failure Continues) several months back, you’d know that I was actually terminated for failing my written permanency exam. Looking back though, I think the reason why God allowed me to get fired was more than just not qualifying the permanency.

While I was working for PAL, I became in denial that the job was actually becoming my idol. My quiet time was becoming too quiet that I wouldn’t want to spend time reading my Bible, I wanted to Fellowship with my friends at church but I was half hearted in serving the Lord, I neglected opportunities (I dropped my BibleMesh class) where I had the chance to get to know Him more. I wouldn’t give much value to God, the same way I’d give value to my layover activities, my dream destinations, to my OOTD’s, my Instagram posts (which I deleted shortly after my termination, none of it really mattered). This season in my life reminded me of Ecclesiastes, where the writer talks about how depressing it is to seek happiness in the things of the world.

According to GotQuestions.Org: This book gives Christians a chance to see the world through the eyes of a person who, though very wise, is trying to find meaning in temporary, human things. Most every form of worldly pleasure is explored by the Preacher, and none of it gives him a sense of meaning. It’s key verse is Ecclesiastes 1:2 Vanity of vanities,’ says the Preacher, ‘vanity of vanities, all is vanity’. Sadly, this is very similar to how I spent most of my time flying with PAL. I was distracted by the world. As a Christian, I should be a world changer, not a world chaser. In PAL, I chose the latter.

The Epistle of Paul to Titus, (chapter 2) talks about the saints denying ungodliness & worldly lust, seeking the Lord, living soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world. I wasn’t seeking the Lord while I was flying for PAL. I placed Him behind, and navigated my life the way I wanted to. (Nagmarunong nanaman po ako. Feeling ko nanaman I could take care of my self.) For a few months, I was delusional, the world ate me up. — And that, I do not want happen ever again. I pray that His grace sustains me in my new journey with the new Airlines I am currently training for.

I’m already on my last 2 weeks at training to once again be a Flight Attendant. I am very grateful that He gave me another chance to pursue this career. So far, training has been very good, I can say it’s lovelier the second time around. By Grace, my Quiet Time has been good. By Grace, I would get better grades at my exams, nothing below 90%, I pray it remains this way until the end. By Grace, I would enjoy getting to know the 18 new classmates I have at training (but of course I love pa din my PAL ICCT16-12 family, the #Victorious1612 lol) and more women from other batches, some of different nationalities. My prayer for this brand new journey, I tweaked it a bit: that none of the things I would be tasked to do in this new opportunity given to me will be in vain, that I do not value this opportunity above God in my life, that I do not take it for granted, and that it humbles me, MORE & ALWAYS. May I never find the world pleasurable. May I never ever forget my First Love, Jesus Christ.

Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” Ecclesiastes 12:13 On top of it all, I’ve witnessed and experienced that my faith in Christ Jesus is the ultimate job entrusted to me. The faith I have that He graciously poured out through and in me is my ultimate standards of pursuing a career. Life on earth is brief, time is running, why would I settle for things that do not have eternal bearing? In case that happens again, which I hope not, please rebuke me.

Few more weeks till graduation day. May I give Him glory for the rest of my time at training, post grad, and beyond. To my failures, to redirection, to new endeavours, to success, to every sadness turned to gladness, to God be all the glory!

My Story on Immodesty

Immodesty was a big struggle to me. I thought it was something I’d be compromising for the rest of my life due to career choices. My biggest dreams when I was about a decade younger were either to be a supermodel or a beauty queen (me & my worldly perspective, of course). My character was set to the industry’s culture, to wear underwear in front of anyone, pose in bikinis, look fierce in photoshoots, casually seduce the camera and have my sensual photos all over social media, print ads, etc.

Since I became a Christian, I began praying for God to make me dress modestly. It was *gasps* tough. I remember cutting all my bikinis into tinier pieces years ago and throwing ‘em all to make sure nobody uses it so I don’t make anyone stumble. Just a year ago, I’d say no to projects that would require me to be in bikinis. I’d also ask my friends to rebuke me each time I post anything disturbing on social media. It was so hard trying my very best to be modest. Mind you, I had massive relapses. But as usual, Grace came to my rescue.

None of my “good works” and my modesty-styling-skills fully changed me. It’s only Christ who could transform me from the inside out. It says in Galatians 5:16-19: walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, SENSUALITY..” Baaam! As usual, pahiya nanaman ako, I read these verses about 6 months ago at a Bible study with my friends, Marlann and Pamu. That moment, it finally hit me hard, and so I repented.

Right now, slowly but surely, I’m learning, appreciating and I’m fully convinced that my body really is the Holy Spirit’s temple, that I must protect, guard and take care of it not only in its spiritual but physical sense. What helps me fight immodesty is every time I’m about to do/be it, I’d ask myself: what is my motivation for doing it? Why do I want to flaunt my body? Why do I want to post a certain photo? Who gets pleased when I do it? As Christians, we are told not to conform to the pattern of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of our mind. Then we’ll be able to test and approve what God’s will is–His good, pleasing and perfect will. (Intense. Gamit na gamit sakin ‘tong verse na ‘to.) It’s nice to always be reminded that not all good plans we have leads to the Lord’s pleasing and perfect will for us. If our desire doesn’t please God and doesn’t point us to Christ, it’s pointless. You get my point? 😉

I would call it irresistible grace that God brought me to a place that requires me to dress modestly. What a beautiful irony! Now, I’m learning to understand that my problem was more than just clothing preferences and career choice. The issue of immodesty is in the core, it’s an issue of the heart. It’s my sin in itself. Immodesty brought me to committing more sins in my past. It made me greedy for attention, fed my insecurity, led me to immorality. Indeed, sin begets sin!

But I praise my Lord and Saviour that I’m no longer in that state, that though I chose the immodest path back then, He pulled me out of it. Though I was being tempted by instant gratification and the earthly desires I had, He saved me from it. Immodesty is just one of the many sins Christ saved me from. I’m excited to discover more sins and be delivered from all of them. I’m hopeful that He will constantly sanctify me on this matter.

May our beauty not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, our inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 1Peter 3:3-4

“Don’t you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body.” 1Corinthians 6:19-20 — Shall we? Leggo!

Technology is an OFW’s Best Friend — Would you agree?

I’ve never appreciated technology the way I do these days. I’ve been taking advantage of it for the past two weeks of me being an OFW. It is the instrument of Grace the Lord is immensely using to strengthen, widen and deepen my faith in Him. I would seriously be dead by now without it — Spirituality dead.

I remember my prayer before I got my iPhone back when I was still working for Philippine Airlines. I literally asked God to allow me to use it only to give Him glory; that I do not use it for vanity, for selfish interests. I prayed that with every App I download in it, I only use them with an eternal perspective. I am amazed to witness now that that prayer is evidently becoming a reality, slowly but surely. My mobile phone is such a blessing. It has become my best friend. Praise God. 😭 Here’s why.

1) It is what keeps me rooted in the faith since I got here. My devotions, my Bible, my praise and worship music are all in it. It literally allows me to meditate on the Word day and night. It keeps me Spiritually alive and healthy. Yay! My most used app now are Spotify (for dancing and singing) Holy Bible (You Version; for my Quiet time) and Ligonier (where I watch preaching sermons). God makes my life A LOT easier through all these.

2) It connects me with my Spiritual family. It’s been two weeks and thank God cause I haven’t missed a dgroup meeting. I shall never give up, forsake, neglect meeting them even if it’s a bit hard to communicate. Hearing and being encouraged with the updates of my sisters in Christ and staying accountable with them is TREASURE. Thank God for Facebook Messenger! 😭

3) This week, I also got to video call with three of my best friends. (Thanks to Janelle Olafson, another sister who is in Texas – USA for inspiring me to catch up with my bff’s.) It was awesome! I’m glad to hear the things they are up to even for a while. I’m thinking of doing this with them regularly. Looks like distance isn’t really a hindrance for long-distance-relationships! ☺️

4) Another thing I love about technology is that I get to capture nice moments with my new friends; and swiftly share them with my loved ones all over the world.

It’s only been two weeks. I hope & pray that the communication upward⬆️ (to Him), downward⬇️ (through Him), and side-to-side↔️ (with Him) continues.

My phone has its benefits but it also has its downside. Sometimes, I’d still go overboard with social media to entertain myself for worldly feeding of my brains. You probably think I’m being too hard on myself, but the sinner in me has the tendency to idolise entertainment. I hope to be improved by Grace (on using social media wisely) for the coming days, that my heart chooses to spend more time with Him than indulge in things that don’t have eternal bearing. Grace, please take over!!!

Eastside Manors: Vote Wisely

My family moved to Eastside since I was 2years old, and I am already 27 now. So I essentially live in this place for 25years. I had my first crush here, and first heart break lol. My very first school was in this village too. I’ve seen childhood friends come and go; old and new neighbors exchanging food during noche buena. I’ve witnessed some neighbors fighting over a parking space, laughing, sharing lives through yearly Christmas carols, halloween parties and basketball leagues. Eastside was also a place of my break up stories, rebellion, life realizations, war room moments with Jesus, and the day-to-day transitions of my life mostly happened here.

Eastside wasn’t merely a house to live in for me and my family, it was and is our home. Among all the family members, I am the one who lived here the longest. I won’t claim to be its perfect homeowner, I’ve had my fair share of good, irresponsible and embarrassing acts in our community, that’s why I am writing this blog to at least try to do my part and be a responsible villager, by having the initiative to vote for the coming Election of officers for EMHA (Eastside Manors Homeowners Association) happening this Saturday. If you are a homeowner here, and you are concerned for Eastside as well, I hope this post enlightens you.

I won’t be accusing anyone of anything. I won’t be posting here who I’m voting for, though I am definitely supporting a party. I just have a few prayer points for my humble-little village that I hope my neighbors would also consider praying for.

1. Integrity – Whoever gets appointed as the next officers, whether I’d vote for them or not, I would have to respect it. God says honor the ones in authority. But I pray that whoever wins, the ones who will be in authority exemplify this character: integrity. Better the poor whose walk is blameless, than the rich whose ways are perverse – Proverbs 28:6. The Lord detests lying lips but He delights in people who are trustworthy – Proverbs 12:22. To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice – Proverbs 21:3. I pray for gracious integrity not just for the officers but for each and every home owner.

2. Fear of the Lord – If one fears the Lord, that person will be afraid to do anything that is against Him. That person isn’t corrupt, is not a liar, not manipulative. I pray that Eastside will have a set of officers that fears the Lord more than anything, that they fear going to hell and that they have respect and understanding for the Lord’s wrath that they won’t plan on doing anything displeasing.

3. Transparency – Let us bring every transaction to the light! Bible says we cannot serve two masters, it’s either you are for money or you are for the Lord. May God’s truth alone rule over the entire community of Eastside Manors. I sincerely pray that the ones who will be appointed this Saturday have a truthful heart for service, and true service is selfless servanthood, it isn’t self serving. May the officers not want the position for their own selfish interests, for vanity, because God abhors & won’t tolerate these heart conditions.

Here’s what I’m confident of: God will not allow anyone to be in a position of influence for nothing. If you think the winners won’t be deserving, then know that God is sovereign. Judgement belongs to Him. He may be doing something in that man’s heart. So let’s all continue to pray for His truth to prevail, that Eastside may be a progressive community. One that allows Jesus Christ to rule and reign in & through the neighborhood. I pray for a peaceful & graciously fair election. Hearts and lives are changing in Eastside, claim it!

Vote wisely. 😉

Magnificat: Chapter 1

Yesterday, we did a shoot for a very special brand that will be launching in 2 months. It’s called MAGNIFICAT, meaning: My soul magnifies the Lord. I can’t tell much about it for now, but feel free to follow it on Instagram for future updates: @magnificatph 😉

This is the highlight of my Christian walk so far that I thank and magnify the Lord for: 

My improving view on theology and understanding of the Bible. I’m learning the true context of the Word and unlearning ideas that may feel correct & sound correct and acceptable to me. I grasped also that just because a pastor/preacher/teacher say something nice and uplifting doesn’t mean it’s right and aligned with what the Scripture has to say. I learned that I shall not be after “hyper grace”, that I shall not view my God only as my provider and blesser, but ultimately, as my Greatest Blessing. What if He wanted me to live a life like Job’s? The man who lost his family and all his possessions and lived in misery, would I still love Him? Do I really love Him, or I’m just enticed by the idea that He can give me whatever I want? 

For my firmer and deeper understanding of the Truth, I used to listen to lots and lots and lots of preaching online of my then favorite pastor from the USA, I had to stop listening to him because not everything he says are leading to true salvation, to the Bible’s context. Most of the time, he’s just hyper. I’m learning the importance of relying on the Scripture alone (Sola Scriptura), that I may not be confused at people’s theology, and that I may develop building my walk with my God towards a foundation that’s not easily broken, easily swayed by the world & myself that is still in very much need of sanctification. I would always say, since I became a Christian, that the Bible taught me “everything”, showed me how filthy my heart was (and still is at times), corrected many things in my life and developed my convictions. If that’s the case, then all the more I shall read and study it. I’ve never enjoyed reading the Bible the same way I do now. A few months back, I would read it for the wrong reasons, I’d also share & interpret it wrongly. I would say I do love Jesus but I wouldn’t go deeper in the faith. I wouldn’t study my Bible and I’d give and excuse that I don’t have to be a Bible scholar to be a true discipler. But logically, I cannot love someone I do not know, I cannot say I am close with somebody and not know the history of His life. That does not necessarily mean I have to be a Bible scholar, but the Word is readily available, I do have time, I just didn’t want to get to know my God because I was lazy. I didn’t want to learn. There you go, one of the reasons why Jesus had to die for me. 

I have read the entire Bible but I haven’t really understood it. Right now, I graciously have the desire to learn MORE, I believe it’s the Lord that placed this desire in my heart, cause I didn’t have it then. I’m excited on how my faith may be even more improved, excited to learn how to love more, because loving isn’t innate in any of us, remember? If we are true Christians, we shall accept this reality. There’s nothing good in us, even a tiny bit. That’s also one thing I’ve confirmed, that I’m only good because of Grace, apart from it, all I have to offer are garbage, because my so-called-goodness are all in vain, if not done for Christ’s glory. 

I must decrease. He must increase.  

GAVAGIVES.com 

I was GAVA’s very first employee back in 2015. I began as its Marketing Associate and returned 2 months ago as its Brand Development Manager. Meaning, more responsibilities, broader view on how it may effectively grow (internally) as a team and (externally) as anyone’s crowdfunding platform for fundraising. I thank my boss, who is also someone I consider a very good friend and sister-in-Christ, Ms. Ann, Gava’s Founder and CEO for the trust she has given me to serve Gava again. Prior to my return, I had so much fears, I just came from a failure as a Flight Attendant in Philippine Airlines and I was scared of once again being a disappointment to any company. I was torn between choosing Gava or staying with PAL to temporarily try out a different career opportunity before I can train to fly again. I prayed hard and I was directed to choosing Gava for Biblical and practical reasons. 

I’m now on my 2nd month with Gava. So far, I’d say that God has been really gracious on how He continually humbles my heart since He brought me back here. I love my expanding network at it, how I would have a close encounter with different charity foundations and non profit organizations volunteers/managers. I’ve seen successful personal fundraising campaigns and how it has helped a lot of people. I’ve witnessed a family who fought for the life of their sister/daughter, a birthday-for-a-cause fulfilled, animal rescue campaigns, a father reunited with his family, people protecting the country’s president, and a whole lot more. Each program/campaign with the desire to help, to give, to fight for a cause. 

I think I mentioned this before in one of my old blogs, that I don’t support and promote what I do not believe in, it may seem exaggerated but it’s the way it is. I’m pretty sure a lot of us would have that principle too. Gava has always been a company I highly have faith in. Anyone would be so blessed to work for a company that has the mission to give and the vision to see a lot of lives transforming through giving. I do not see it as a regular business, a typical job, it is vitally what our society needs now. In a generation where everyone’s always online, where millennials would want to make a difference, Gava is one ultimate gateway to help our society, school, community, church, foundations and advocacies through online giving. 

There is nothing that I have now that I did not receive. Every good and perfect gift I have is from Above, from my Lord. I do not possess even my own possession. This alone, is a liberating motivation why I give back. 

Let’s give through Gava. 

www.gavagives.com