To Be A Good Steward

To be a good steward, is a challenge.

God has given us blessings so numerable.

He has given us not only dreams, but also visions.

He has given us not only responsibilities, but privileges

He has given us not only causes, but also burdens.

He has given us not only people, but relationships.

He has given us not only things, but blessings.

Well, wasn’t it a cycle?

And with all these things that the Lord has given, the challenge is to remember not to complain or argue with the Master. But instead, to respond in obedience, in dependence and most of all, in faith that He is in control, that He has ordained all those things and that He actually  knows what’s going to happen.

This isn’t to say that we must be complacent and not do what He called us to do. That’s laziness. But faith must come along with good works, not with complacency.

So to share, I thank the Lord for all these things He’s given me at the moment which is a challenge for me to be an excellent stewardship over, with His help:

  1. Overflow – Access Point (Overflow’s Prayer Ministry)
  2. Carve Business Management Services – Project Steve Salvia
  3. Carve Business Management Services – Motion Four Fitness Gym
  4. Academics – Masters in Economics @ ADDU
  5. Relationship with a special someone
  6. Friendship, Accountability Partners
  7. Tutorial – Math Lessons, Home-based

With all of these, I lay them down before the Lord. I trust in His Plans for His thoughts are higher than mine, His ways are higher than mine. (Isaiah 55:8-9) I trust the Lord will develop me into the person He needs me to be. And that He’ll use me according to His will, not mine.

#YourWillBeDone

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A Warm Christmas Day

This 2015, the 25th welcomed us with a bright shot of sunlight as a few crease of the curtain made a hole to the room.

As the day went by here at home, it seemed like a normal one.

It’s just that…

There’s full awareness within us of the REASON FOR THIS SEASON, Jesus.

It’s the same as the beam of sunlight in our face earlier, it’s normal… but it’s presence is more apparent than ever.

My father’s playing good instrumental jazz-y music while my mother’s finishing a whole heap of clothes to be ironed. My younger brother went around town in his biking gear with his mountain bike. While I? I just slept a whole 3 hours this afternoon. 🙂

Now that it’s almost evening, there’s a few more hours left to end this Christmas Day 2015…

My sincere prayer is that in every season, it’s always going to be HIM, Jesus, who’ll be the reason. Whether it’s good times or bad times, May it be Jesus who glues us together, keeping our heads in the ground and our knees glued to the ground as well, praying before Him in thanksgiving and in faith.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

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Overthinking: Insights

Overthinking is a habit that I am planning to overcome or to make it to my advantage.

She was 6 and she was at the back, drawing, and the teacher said this little girl hardly ever paid attention, and in this drawing lesson she did.

The teacher was fascinated and she went over to her and she said, ‘What are you drawing?’ And the girl said, ‘I’m drawing a picture of God.’ And the teacher said, ‘But nobody knows what God looks like.’ And the girl said, ‘They will in a minute.’

#Insights #ChangeIsComing

http://elitedaily.com/life/science-overthinking/736245/

Family: Together Again

It is a happy moment when parents visit us here. My mother and father checks on the refrigerator; it wasn’t turned on and it was as empty as an eggshell. But just a few days, we become undeniably well-nourished and well-pampered as abundance of healthy food becomes apparent in the refrigerator and on the dining table. Even canned foods and other “necessities” are pumped up in the cabinets.This set-up or placement of our family really wasn’t our plan.

You might wonder why they “visit” us when a family is “supposedly” together. (Thank you, Yolanda) We wonder too. Yet, this happens only every other month or every other week, depending on the budget and financial provision.

But since God’s plan is better and bigger than ours, as a result, we get to appreciate more of each other’s absence, presence and existence.

After how many weeks, just last Thursday, my mother surprised me and younger brother with her companion. To be honest, we didn’t expect to see Tatay with her (as they informed otherwise) but we weren’t surprised either. We have been used to their surprise-surprise antics.

It has been a month and a half since we’ve been together. And counting the cost, it really is too much to spend for fare expenses just for the sake to be with family and to exploit the expanded holidays. We really missed each other. It’s just obvious as we dine a lot more outside and prioritize real conversations that phone calls cannot equate.

This Sunday, my father has gone back to Tacloban, Leyte already. Of course, he doesn’t leave without any words of wisdom for us here in the South. (Yes Father, will study and start on the investments and will jumpstart my career right).

Now it’s Tuesday, and one more night to pass, my mother’s going back too, and it would be between me and my younger brother again. It does feel sad that we’ll be apart from each other for a long time again, but with these instances, we have learned to savor each other, be strong and be committed to communicate with each other, unlike our few years back when we thought we’re stable in Leyte. But in these times, every prayer for a safe travel and for each other counts; every breakfast, lunch and dinner together matters; every moment with each other is the gift (and maybe the only gift) the Almighty has blessed us with.

We may not be complete, as a family, always. But we have learned to respect and to love each other, to cherish and to make plans together, to pray and play as buddies, even to connect and share our stories in a personal level; And to just be family, even when we’re miles apart.

And as a family, we just have to keep calm and Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the LORD with all (y)our heart; do not depend on (y)our own understanding.”

Collecting Again: Recollection

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Here, is a lovely sketch by one of the students in my lifegroup. Yesterday at Hope Mountain, it was a lovely avenue to enjoy nature and just talk about God’s Word with Grade 8 students of PSHS-SMC (Philippine Science High School-Southern Mindanao Campus). Being with these students, I slightly reminisce the moments in my high school at PSHS-EVC. I can feel the pressure weighted on their shoulders from expectations, cut-off grades and disciplinary character. To have that recollection was an opportunity for them to collect themselves again and to be lead how to live LIFE (Leadership, Integrity, Faith and Excellence).

When the Day Rains with Blessings…

Last Friday of the month, it is raining with blessings -small and big, unnoticeable and the obvious. Collectively for the whole week, these stories of sunshine and rainbows are worth sharing. The beauty with blessings depends on the perspective of the beholder. So, even with celebrations and even with the delays, the beholder effectively and boldly captures the essence of blessings and seasons with faith and trust.

There has been a lot of degrees shifted in my perspective. How? Ever since I have been charged to the unemployed sector of the society (sounds like I’ve been factionless/outcast, but actually, it’s just a phase/season), I have been entrusted with bigger responsibilities involving the financial aspects of living. As a middle child, I am not used to place high importance to what practicality calls saving and budgeting. However, being a young professional, it has become my great burden and at the same time, a privilege to be a good steward of money.

A Quest to Financial Freedom

That is why, this week, along with the paying of monthly dues and bills, I decided to take the baby steps and do something to be financially literate. Recommended mostly by my father, I read books and blog posts in the net of what is takes and means to be financially literate. I also referred to the Scriptures as to what God really says about wealth and riches.

So as a beginner, I went to a bank and inquired about their investments/insurance programs. Then, in the middle of the week, I willfully attended a seminar on strategic wealth planning which also talked about investments and insurances. By deliberately doing so, I actually felt and experienced this financial freedom, even if I have not my monthly wage yet. I have been blessed a mindset about money that “We are masters to money, and not slaves to them.” I actually learned a lot. And so, I thank my father for pushing me to really be serious with this area of my life and my Abba Father for changing my heart and mindset with tithing and with the responsibility of being a steward to His riches in this Earth.

Catching Up with a Friend

In that same day of the seminar, I met up with my college friend who was my dormmate and org-mate in one of the organizations in college. And since it’s her first time to be in this city, I volunteered to be with her for the day and explored the city together (not the whole coverage of the land area). With each other, we caught up through our stories and ideas of our lives. We also explored high-class restaurants and snack shops in Davao City. At the end, we both acknowledged that Davao City is challenging to walk in to, compared to our same home-university at Dumaguete City.

Cost of Delays to Cancellations

Unemployed as I may be, I did take the initiative, for the last few months, in looking for a job.  By faith, I received my first job. Although officially I am not hired yet, I am to have my first client yet. So, yesterday, I was actually scheduled for a client interview. But, it was rescheduled due to technical issues. That’s why, I got to cancel my Lifegroup/Bible Study with the Grade 10 students for today, even though I am not sure that I would be having an interview today. As the topic is about relationships, I actually felt bad that I would miss this session with the girls. Still, I will pray for them. And in connection with my interview, I have time to prepare and study the website of the client.

Celebrations

Just yesterday, our family has been rejoicing. That’s because, a young professional has been added to the clan. One of my cousins passed the board exam for licensure for Architecture. And with happy hearts, we congratulated our dearest cousin for already being an Architect as published in the Professional Regulatory Commission. And this day that the Lord has made, we also celebrate the second birth day of our baby in the family. My niece, Lois Reinn, is a blessing to our families. We are pleased and childlike to have her in our homes. Bragging in the what God has done, we take pride in her for surviving two strong typhoons: Supertyphoon Haiyan/ Yolanda while they were in Tacloban City and Supertyphoon Hagupit/Ruby while they were in Carigara, Leyte. So, the bottom line is, it’s all about perspective. This week may have been hectic and full of surprises with delays or celebrations, it’s a matter of how to take it all in, with acceptance or with rejection. I love this week for all it’s worth. And for this friday, I would like to savor the glory of God at home, as the day continues to shower with rain and blessings.

Saturday of Firsts

Noting in my calendar, I savor this day for having the number of firsts. 🙂

Because while I am here in this city, away from the home I used to live, I finally experienced these things:

  • Going out of the house and commuting at 5AM
  • Jogging & Zumba at People’s Park with friends
  • Meeting a new friend: Ate Elsyl, who is a talented event coordinator
  • Participating Saturday Prayer Mornings in the church

Present tense, these activities, I pray, I would like to commit to God and continue to be doing for the rest of my Saturdays in this life.