Sunday, December 10, 2017

Most Rewarding

Puerto Prinsesa, Palawan. So this was me at the end of the 17-day short-term mission trip. After having been to mountains, to bathing in rivers, to being with different tribal kids and somehow getting immersed into the tribal culture, everything was all worth it. Everything meant including waking up too early, cooking under the scorching heat for forty kids, almost getting into a bus accident, sleeping without a mattress on rocky grounds, living with no electricity and barely there water supply and not getting a sumptuous meal or a decent comfort room. Yep! All worth it! Whoever said missions was easy breezy? Even the Master said to carry your cross and follow Me. But despite of what it had cost, I would still do it all over again. 

Hello breakfast!

Not your ordinary bedroom

Hike on our way to camp

Tribal Camp 2017

Missions has brought me into a place I thought I could never be. It was an experience that has made a huge impact on my life and made my relationship with Christ deeper than it was before. I never understood it all. Hearing other people talk about missions, being far from home and outside comfort zones, preaching the Gospel and living in different communities, I never get how it was so inspiring, how it’s worth sharing and how I was being constantly encouraged to do it too. I never found it exciting to become a missionary except maybe the constant travel. Becoming a missionary would entail not having a decent job or getting a very good paycheck, not being around food chains and restaurants and most of all not being around with friends and family. When the opportunity came, I was more of anxious than actually be thrilled about it. 

Being called out of your own comfort zone is scary, I tell you. When you’re just so used to your life the way it was ever since you were little, it will be so hard for you to leave it all behind (even for a short while). 17 days was the longest and the first time I was out of the house  and on a different island. I can understand why mom was on Messenger with me when I was yet less than 24 hours away. I did a lot of thinking and a whole lot more of prayer. Breaking your walls is hard but disobeying the great commission of Jesus is even harder. 

The whole journey, before, during and after the missions, was not all flowers and sunshine. Many times I would break down and cry out to God for all the troubles and road blocks that kept my heart in despair. There were countless of times that I wanted to give up and all I could utter was, Lord give me strength. I had to carry on, press on toward that goal—after all this wasn’t for me but this was all for Christ. Now, as I get to look back on it all, I would still remember how God had sustained us all and provided for our every need. All thirty seven of us can testify to how amazing God had dealt in each of us. Whether it would be spiritually, physically or financially, He was faithful to all that He had promised.

View from the top

April 11, 2017. This was my view from above. Getting on this plane with bags packed and heart prepared for anything. It was all by God’s grace that have brought me this far and by His grace alone that I overcame. When I look back at every little need He provided, the registration fees, the plane tickets, the prayer partners and senders, and friends and family that helped and supported us all the way. Not a single detail and prayer He has left unanswered. When I was down to my last cash of Php 200.00, I didn’t know how I could still buy a few essentials needs. I remember after I prayed, I was rummaging through my study desk for no apparent reason and I found a thousand bill hiding beneath my table cloth and my Php 500.00 Sodexo GC placed together with my stack of sticky notes. You can imagine me leaping for joy! 

My Sodexo Premium Pass just before I handed it over to the Robinsons supermarket cashier
2016, my Sunlife advisor gave me this Sodexo GC as a gift. I never heard of Sodexo before and I didn’t know how or where to use it. At first I thought I could only use it for big grand companies but it is actually accepted in more than 10,000 outlets nationwide. No wonder it’s the most versatile because it’s  really a lot of places and stuff I can do with it! I was going to save it until its expiry next year but then, I knew it was about time I would use it. Somehow I was able to buy the necessities, such as mosquito repellant (because we didn’t get anti malaria shots), wet wipes (a must and truly a life saver haha), toiletries (soap and shampoo) and packets of gum (the airplane thing). 

Next year will be a whole lot of adventure for me. I have already thought out a few travels within the country, some of course would still involve missions. Thanking the Lord ahead for the plans that He has laid out and the provisions that would also come with it. And even if I wouldn't have used my GC this  year or until it's validation date, I wouldn't have to worry because Sodexo GCs will always be valid. Why? because revalidation and replacement of Sodexo GC’s are free of charge once the validity date is reached. That's the only GC I've known and experienced that has revalidation, and with no extra charge!

So where would I use it next? Now that I know there's so much my Sodexo GC can do, I could choose from so many, but I would love to shop for bags and travel accessories anywhere in these stores. I'm a traveler/missionary after all. Until the next plane ride! Thank You Jesus! :) 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Life Lately

So how has life been lately? Wow. Where do I start?

Okay, I got on the plane for the first time in my entire life, went to a Christian music concert, went out for missions, met amazing people along the way, got unemployed, traveled once in a while, currently baby-sitting the very old grandmother, stuck at home most of the time, which, makes me unable to visit my dad who recently had a stroke and heart attack last Monday with a blood sugar level of 400. Oh and my golden retriever also decided she doesn’t like to eat anymore. And that, basically, sums up my first seven months of 2017. 

Well I could just end this post with all of that already being said. The thing is, all these things that have happened, happy or sad, has a God-placed purpose attached to it. And you don’t just go through it but you grow through it. Sometimes we fall down on our knees and experience a temporary breakdown, unable to grasp and understand why things happen the way they do. Faith tells you that everything’s going to be okay because God is still in control, but your emotions and your mind tell you otherwise. Thus, I am not ending this post with this sentence just yet. Because life doesn’t just end here, it hasn’t been made into a conclusion just yet. God is still doing something and He wants to show us how He’ll do it. Though if you ask me, I actually have no idea how He will do, why He will do and when He will do whatever He will do. All I know is that all things work for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28). So let go and let God. Let go of what you are facing and let God lead you to Himself. 

There had already been a number of giants I have faced in my life, raging storms, and mountains that are very impossible to move. This is not unusual or something odd to anyone. Life will have its difficulties, but our Savior, who loves us more than life, is greater than them all. Even if it is pretty hard to keep the faith, these difficulties are exactly the perfect moments were Jesus will show us His unconditional love. There are no giants He cannot put down, no storms He cannot calm and no mountains He cannot move. 

So there, after days of wrestling over these things I have come to a point where I have raised my white flag and said, “Okay Lord, I surrender to You, take control of whatever my life has been lately.” 

"but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.." -Isaiah 40:31

Friday, May 26, 2017

It's NOT About You

It’s not about you.”  These words sting but they sure did budge me in the right place.  I’ve recently told my husband how tired I am already of the many things on my plate.  I don’t know if it’s all the pregnancy or if it’s one of the enemy’s evil schemes.  I asked him about the possibility of dissolving the organization that we founded because I just did not think it’s all worth it and it’s sucking up so much of my thoughts and energy.
© For All Things Pretty