Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Sad Joke

I was blog hopping this morning and saw this photo in one of the blogs I visited. I know it was meant for a joke but it made my heart cry. Is it just me not getting the joke? Others were laughing at it. Maybe it's just me. I have been saddened by the high divorce rate in America. I've known and cried for my friends who have been facing marriage problems. And I know that one root factor that causes a lot of divorces in the country is the discontentment of the wives to stay home and take care of their families in a full time basis. When a wife starts to seek her independence- gets a career outside home which demands a whole lot of time away from her family, when she starts to neglect her main obligations as a wife and a mother, and when she refuses to submit to the headship of her husband, that's when serious marriage problems arise. This is the main reason why I can't laugh at this joke of a picture of a husband bowing down in front of her wife. It would be sinful of me to even imagine my husband bowing down before me. Marriage is a serious thing. It is a godly thing. Satan would do everything to destroy as many marriages as possible. The least we can do to honor our marriages is to take it seriously.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Yummy Sunday

Fried Breaded Shrimp- Isabelle's favorite appetizer. For more photos of yummilicious food check out Yummy Sunday here...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

They, too, Love my Hubby!

When I had the "seasoned" ladies at our church over for a luncheon a few weeks ago, they told me how they admire my husband for his being a responsible, hard working, kind, pleasant and godly young man. One of them even said that he is her favorite young man at church. That was not the first time I heard that same comment for my my husband. Some older ladies before told me that Paul is every woman's dream for a son-in-law.

Last summer, Paul and I had a dinner date in St. Paul downtown. Next to our table was an older couple (we found out later that they were siblings) who started talking to us. We started a long conversation with them, especially when they found out that I am originally from the Philippines. It so happened that both of them grew up in the Philippines when their father was in the US navy. Our conversation became more interesting as we covered politics. The lady was a strong Democratic supporter. Paul reasoned with her with kind words. Then the lady said, "I can't believe I am even talking to a Republican supporter! You (referring to Paul) are the first Republican supporter I ever talked to. There is something about you that I really love! Your personality is beautiful! Oh, I love this guy!" Hearing that line I said to myself, "Wow! And he is my husband! I married a noble man!" The next few minutes were spent evangelizing the couple.

Here's more... You'd think only older ladies admire my husband. No. Last week, our next door neighbor told me that her little 3-year-old girl really likes Paul. She would go to their window and check if Paul's van is in our driveway. Then she would say, "Paul isn't home because his van is not there." Our neighbor across the street also has a 3-year old girl. She comes and plays with Isabelle from time to time. When she was over last week, I had a little conversation with her when she asked me where Paul was. I told her, "He is still at work." "What time will he be home?" she asked again. I said, "In thirty minutes." Her little face looked sad and said, "It's going to be my bedtime. I have to see Paul. I have to." I think it was cute how these little girls also love my husband.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Yummy Sunday

What can be yummier than a chocolate fountain! My little girl gets excited every time we set this sweeeeet fountain but when it comes to eating time, she only eats marshmallows without chocolate coating! How funny is that! For me, there is nothing more deliciouso than chocolate coated banana or pineapple chunks!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Last week, I was angry. I was angry because my sincerity was questioned and my offer of sisterly love was turned down by someone who I truly wanted to consider me as her friend. And I'm sure I was angry because I felt rejected. My human nature wanted that I would indulge in angry bashing to even the score. It demanded me that I would go an-eye-for-an-eye-and-a-tooth-for-a-tooth with her. It needed me to hurt her back. I was angry! But thank God for this special occasion! It turned out to be the special time to know how I deal with anger.

I used to have issues on anger. When I got angry, I usually wouldn't stop talking until I mow people down with my hurtful words. It is by God's grace alone that I've learned to stop doing that. It was when He put me in a place where everything around just made me angry that He taught me to learn to be quiet and to pray instead. If I didn't learn that, I would have become an ugly duckling! No, seriously, God placed me to work for an angry ugly woman. She was always angry and she was super ugly! Being that I shared an office with her a year and a half, I became her anger target. I was hurt! So hurt I promised I didn't want to do it to others! She was so ugly I didn't want to become like her! She had a chronic hostile attitude on anything and on almost everyone. She was angry at the whole world. She was angry at God! But God has used her life to cultivate an important character in me... SLOW TO BECOME ANGRY!

I want to be beautiful and knowing how anger can make a person ugly and sickly, I pray that I become slow to become angry everyday. I feel sorry to see many angry and ugly women. They usually are the ones who are overly opinionated, loud and not happy. I feel for them and pray that God will begin to do a make-over in their lives, just as what He has done in me.

Here is a short test if what you have is a sinful anger or a righteous one...

1. Do you get angry most often about personal slights or over injustices against others?
2. Would your family members call you an angry person?
3. Would your family members say that you can't control your temper, that you tend to argue all the time, and that you lash out at the smallest criticism?
4. When someone offends you, does your response match the crime?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Little Self-Pity Party

I have been really tempted to hold a little self-pity party this past few days. It all started when I sent a text message to a friend (I thought she was) to ask her how she was doing. She had her baby through C-section about three weeks ago. I know how it is to be in that condition being that I went through the same process. I wanted to know if there's anything I could help her with and when we could come visit them to see the baby. She replied to my text saying that she would invite me once she sees the sincerity in me. I almost dropped! Well, my heart dropped, that's for sure! It hurt so bad. The worst thing was when I asked if she could tell me what I have done wrong, she just said that she'll tell me when the weather is good! I think she is being very mean! This was after all the letters, calls and gifts that I and my husband sent to her. And after the baby shower that I and other ladies had organized for her. We even tried to offer our baby furniture for them to use so they could save. Well, she was complaining about how tight they had been financially over the years. So we just wanted to help them out. But she turned down most of our offers. And that was fine. What's not fine was when she told me that all this while she hasn't seen any sincerity in me. It hurt! Not because it's true that I wasn't sincere but because my sincerity to her was also turned down. Yes, I finally realize it... it was a feeling of rejection. Oh, and that's the reason why it hurt so bad. I felt so rejected by someone I've been really trying to please!

I am just thankful that I was able to respond well to this effort to devastate me. Nice try, I would say. I am so grateful that I've learned to pray before doing anything important. After I got that text, I prayed and looked deep inside my heart of heart. I asked the Lord if I was being insincere to her. I looked for insincerity in me. The answer...

I admit I didn't like her since Day 3. On Day 1, I thought I found a really nice friend. Until she started gossiping about other women in our group and her own sisters. She also showed her true colors when she talked about the movies she liked, the kind of songs she sang, the books she read and when she said "God is not a 'demanding' kind of a god" to justify her worldliness. Day 2, I tried to gently and carefully stop her from gossiping and gently and carefully told her that I think God is pretty demanding of us to present ourselves to Him as holy vessels. But He, of course, gives us the Holy Spirit to have a freedom to live a holy life and full of joy. He demands that we become like Christ each day but is very patient and loving when we fail. Yes, He is very gracious to us and so we must not abuse that grace. Anyway, on Day 2, I could feel her distancing from me. So as I've said, on Day 3, I disliked her but I knew I had to respect and love her. I gave her space but reached out to her for love's sake when I got a chance. I know I've been sincerely reaching out to her. I would go past my not-so-good-feeling and love her just how God loves her. And I admit that my effort (by God's grace) to love her made a significant change in my heart. So sometimes, I wouldn't even feel that I didn't like her. No question about sincerity. I know that I've always been sincere.

I wrote about people pleasing, I think this instance is a perfect example. I've been putting a lot of work to please this girl. And I've not pleased her. She has rejected me and my sincere desire to be her friend. May God bless her. As for me, life must go on- pleasing God rather than man.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It Pays to Wait

I wrote about how I was at the edge of giving up with my desire to be a part of a certain team. And that I even started complaining but thankfully remembered that everything is beautiful in its time. Here is the link to what I wrote about waiting... Waiting

Anyway, the other day, the said team leader called me for a meeting with the whole team this coming Sunday. I am just glad I didn't give up and continued to wait upon God's perfect time.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Learn from the "Seasoned"

One of the blessings God has given me this year is the privilege to get to know and be close to the "seasoned" ladies at our new church. How I love these ladies! They are super sweet! Super godly women! I'm glad I decided to join their Bible study twice a month. It's such a great opportunity to learn from these women who have a long way in their relationship with the Lord. I treasure them all in my heart. I am very drawn to them, I think because my mother is some thousand miles away from me and I miss her.

Yesterday, after our Bible study, I invited most of them over to my house for lunch. I felt so honored to have them come and blessed me with their presence. For more of the story... Seasoned

Monday, November 10, 2008

God Owns our Children!

Rereading the account of Hannah has given me a ton of great lessons to learn. I can not understand this woman who could take a child she had nursed at her breast, swayed to sleep in her arms, watched as he took his first wobbly steps- and then put him in the care of a stranger, well, okay maybe not completely a stranger, releasing him to the plans of God! Only a woman desperately dependent on God.

As I seek to obey God, I have to understand the depth of the meaning that this child He gave me is ultimately His. I do not own my daughter. He does... and He has a purpose for her life. I can only be one of His main instruments to help show my daughter the way that leads to her life's uniquely designed purpose. I know that God doesn't have the capability of using a wrong instrument. There is a reason why I am my daughter's mother. God knew that Hannah would be the perfect mother for Samuel. He knew that she would train his very young heart to learn to listen and respond when he is called.

I don't know how other mothers train their babies to listen to them but this is what I do... I started talking to my daughter from the moment she was born. I made sure she looked at me. When she turned a year old, I started leaving her in the living room playing with her toys while I go take a quick shower. I would remind her to respond to me every time I call her name from the shower. It took her a few months to figure that out. She progressed from not responding at all to repeating what I said, like if I would say, "Izzy!" she'd also say "Izzy!" to finally say, "mommy, I am here." It was pure joy when one day she finally got it. I believe Hannah taught that to little Samuel. And that was Hannah's part in God's process of making her son a prophet. What an important role! As a mother, I received an important role to play in my daughter's life. That is also the reason why I want to be there for and with my daughter 24/7. I don't understand mothers leaving their babies in daycare centers 8/5. And I pray for these mothers.

Well, I don't really know how to end this entry. Some days, I just feel like it is super hard to become a good writer. Today is one of those days!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

My Sweetie Pie

I was preparing our garden for the winter the other day. It was a perfect day for that because the weather was surprisingly warm. I pruned my roses and covered them with dried leaves. I don't like to see dried plants especially in the garden by our main door, so I cut them all off and threw them away. I worked hard that day while my little girl was running around. Then she came to me and put her little white arm around me and said with comforting voice, "Oh, Sweetie Pie!" I was so touched and shocked I laughed! Then she said, "Too loud, mommy." LOL! That's the cutest thing I've ever heard in my entire life. Now, I am my two-year-old daughter's sweetie pie!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Today's Clean Laugh

*Elementary Motherhood*

Following are answers given by grade school-age children to the given questions:

Why did God make mothers?
1. She's the only one who knows where the Scotch Tape is.
2. Think about it. It was the best way to get more people.
3. Mostly to clean the house.
4. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic, plus super powers, and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1. We are related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me.

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string. I think.

What kind of little girl was your mom?
1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

How did your mom meet your dad?
1. Mom was working in a store and dad was shoplifting.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer? Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

What makes a real woman?
1. It means you have to be really bossy without looking bossy.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because Dad is such a goofball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than Dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms work at work and work at home, and dads just work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power because that's who you have to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't have spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What's the difference between moms and grandmas?
1. About 30 years.
2. You can always count on grandmothers for candy. Sometimes moms don't even have bread on them.

Describe the world's greatest mom?
1. She would be able to make broccoli taste like ice cream.
2. The greatest mom in the world wouldn't make me kiss my fat aunts.
3. She'd always be smiling and keep her opinions to herself.

Is anything about your mom perfect?
1. Her teeth are perfect, but she bought them from the dentist.
2. Her casserole recipes. But we hate them.
3. Just her children.

What would it take to make your mom perfect?
1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd dye it, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.
2. I'd make my mom smarter -- then she would know my sister did it and not me.

Monday, November 3, 2008


One thing that easily irritates me is when someone makes me wait. I do not have a lot of grace in waiting. And yes, I need it! I usually gets frustrated that I start complaining. Once I begin expressing my complains, the still small voice starts airing out it's message... "Everything is beautiful in its time. It's not about people failing you, it's about God using the circumstances to build your character." Oh, how easy it is to forget this profound truth and blame people for our disappointments.

Like now, it's been a few months since I started waiting for a go signal to become a part of one group that I've been wanting to join. When I first talk to the leader of this group, she showed so much excitement to have me in the team. But for a month, she didn't even bother to call me to discuss my intentions and when I can start. So I initiated a meeting with her so that we could talk about it. She still showed excitement to having me in the group. I made it sure she knows that I would wait for her call. It's been two months since our last talk. I heard nothing from her. We see each other once a week but she never brought it up. I didn't want to initiate a talk about it again because I was being clear to her on our last talk that I would wait for her go signal. I admit that I really think she is being very rude! And I admit that I started taking it against her. But God, in His grace, has taught me to be patient. To be still and know that He is God. To resist every temptation to become bitter against this person. It may be politically correct to hold it against her, but I chose to renew my mind. Instead of thinking that she is bad, bad, bad, I need to fill my mind with thoughts that the Lord is using this situation to build my character.

I love the fact that God is seldom in a hurry but He's never late! 1 Samuel 13:6-14 records the account of King Saul who lost his kingdom when he stopped waiting on God's time just five minutes before the deliverance. What a fool! I do not want to live like King Saul.

Dear God, help me to wait upon you and to not grow weary while waiting.

Monday, October 27, 2008


I found it really interesting that I keep bumping into anything about Hannah this time. Nearly a month ago, I revisited the account of Hannah in the Bible and was very inspired by what I've learned about her life. Her devotion to the Lord and the way she responded to her circumstances were surely praiseworthy. Looking at her life, for the first time, I had to face the reality that I came short of my responsibility to be a strong support to two of my very good friends who faced barrenness. The story of Hannah has opened my eyes to see and feel what my friends went through.

Anyway, this morning I was listening to Janet Parshall from the internet. She delivered this message at the True Women Conference with Nancy Leigh Demoss in Chicago recently. I was really hoping I could attend the conference but I couldn't leave my 2-year old daughter at home because I am still nursing her. But anyway, I was so surprised when Janet Parshall talked about... Guess who? Hannah! God is bringing it up again to me! I am so excited to know why He wants me to learn about Hannah's life.

Here is the link to Janet Parshall's message...

Sunday, October 26, 2008


At Word Spy, imeldific means ostentatiously extravagant to the point of vulgarity. The word was coined after the name of Imelda Marcos, the wife of the late President Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines, who was known to be a shoe collector extraordinaire. Are you imeldific?

In my other blog, I've blogged about how as a little girl I dreamed of living in America. And that it was also a dream of every girl I knew. I never thought God has already orchestrated a plan for me to be here. As a little girl in a family who literally trusted God to provide for our every meal, I would imagine myself living in a big American house with a huge kitchen that has a huge fridge filled with food! Food was just everything for me growing up. It's not that I was a big eater, it's just that there was scarcity of food at our house. As I grew older, my imagination shifted from food to fashion. Undoubtedly, it was inspired by reading many western fashion mags. I so wanted to be in America! With a wrong reason- fashion! After I graduated in College and got to earn my own money, I was immersed into fashion. I bought too many clothes, purses and shoes. The measure of generosity that I used to give to church and bless the poor was the same amount I gave to the fashion industry. Something extraordinary happened between my fashion collection time and the time when God called me to serve Him in Mongolia.

I left my job and grabbed a scholarship at a short-term mission school. That decision had left me with nothing to spend on clothes and shoes. Worst of all, actually I should say best of all, I had to travel around the Philippines to raise my funds for two years before I was deployed to Mongolia. That two years had definitely made an impact in my life. My appetite for fashion had gradually disappeared. I was too excited to fulfill my dream. This time, my dream to live in the remotest place in the world- Mongolia! Living in Mongolia tempted me to resurrect my desire for fashion. Girls in this country were so fashion wired! Paris is part of their system. A friend of mine earned $60 a month but had a few $300 coats and a few $200 pairs of boots! I knew something was drastically changed in me when I would refuse to buy even a single leather coat. I was so happy and content with my chocolate brown winter coat that was donated to me by a friend in Canada. I was happy with a few clothes. I've changed! The Lord changed me!

Then I met the guy who I married later. When he proposed, he promised he would buy me every pair of shoes and every purse I want without even asking him that. Of course, I gave him my big YES. Hahaha! No, it wasn't for that reason, of course. When I came to America, I came to a big house with a big kitchen that has a big fridge filled with food! The house has spacious closets ready to embrace my big clothes, shoes and purse collection. And yes, I admit the closets are filled with my stuff now.

Now, am I imeldific? NO! Look, if you have stores that sell Steve Madden shoes, Coach purses and Express clothes for $7 each, wouldn't you go and fill your closets and look imeldific but spend barely a hundred dollars? I love treasure hunting at Consignment stores! When I say treasure hunting I mean looking for brand new stuff in a generally used items sold in them. They've got to have the tags attached in them. It's fun! But I still have to be careful because I could easily become materialistic even if I would only shop at these kind of stores. Keeping a budget and sticking to it really helps. I always try to buy my clothes and accessories in cash. But anyway, materialism is really a matter of the heart. And I know that by God's grace, it really doesn't matter to me anymore if I only have a pair of shoes. Oh, wait, no... it's impossible to have just a pair of shoes here. I've got to have 4 pairs, one for each season. So really what I was just trying to say is that I know that deep in my heart there is no imeldific struggle. And I so thank God for bringing that change in my life.

Here, showing you a few of my shoe collection.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

People Pleasing

The modern culture has paved the way for a maximized people pleasing. Sadly enough, not many women realize that people pleasing brings debilitating repercussions. Those who basically made it a career suffer uncontrollable lying, unhappiness, envy and increasing discontentment that eventually lead to the big D, called Depression. People pleasing is like a cancer that slowly contaminates and eats up a woman's healthy system. Some women display it more obvious than others. Let's talk about how "others" do people pleasing.

"Others" had a party to go with a friend. They went shopping for party dresses. Her friend says, "I think this dress would be beautiful on me! What do you think?" "Others" replies, "Oh, absolutely!" but thinks the dress was ugly! Lying in its simplest form! One lie leads to another lie and another and another... Before you know it, you have already became one big fat liar.

We naturally love to be loved. Most women love simply because they want to be loved back. They work so hard to be noticed and praised. Fail to notice and praise them and you would be dealing with a crabby woman. We all want to be loved but it is entirely a different thing if that becomes our motivation to love others because it is called the other half of selfishness.

We have covered "Others" issue. Now I'll talk, wait... I mean write about those women who show people pleasing obviously. You'll know it when you go to profiles in Facebook, Hi5, Friendster, Blogger and other social network websites you will see long descriptions of themselves. They would write even the most bizzare poem to try to describe their personality. They would write all of their known (and out-of-this-world) past and present credentials and affiliations. The only message I get when reading these kinds of profiles is... "You've got to like me!"

Another form of sophisticated people pleasing is "Don't judge!". Many women today believe the idea that we are not suppose to judge. "Judge" as in identifying wrong from right. "Judge" as in to evaluate others and draw conclusions about them. Oh, I think I know where they got the idea, it's from Matthew 7:1. But I wish they would read the following verse because that would make a difference. "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way as you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." (NIV) Matthew 7:1-2. Another verse says, "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment." (NIV) John 7:24 There is one common denominator here and that is that we judge only with righteous judgment. I think that this "don't judge" thing is a scape goat for women who do not want to offend others. These are women who are afraid to make a stand that homosexuality, gossipping, obsessive shopping, being attached to Oprah's shows, drunkenness, boastfullness, worldliness and etc. are wrong! They simply just don't want to make a stand because their reputation is at stake. Tolerance to sin has been increasingly permeated into the Christian community because of this don't-judge thing. It is sad!

When we seek to please others, we are focus on ourselves which is also called selfcenteredness. But when we seek to please God, we are focus on Him. Whose pleasure do we want to have, of God or of man? Pleasing God brings blessings. Pleasing man brings frustrations. Who are you seeking to please now?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Falling in Love with Hannah

I have been going through Beth Moore's 90 days study on David. This past couple weeks, I was reading the back story of David's life, way back to the story of the prophet who anointed him king. The story of Samuel. And the story of his mother, Hannah, who was known to be a drunkard.

Hannah wasn't a boozehound for no reason! In fact, she had all the right to be feeling so depressed to seek the comfort of alcohol (as if there is such a thing as that!). She was married to a preposterous man who thought he could be one with the two women he married. She was childless, which was one of the most disgraceful situations a woman in the middle east faced during that time. She was rediculed by her husband's number 2 wife for being barren. And the worst of it all, her husband was completely clueless of what she was going through.

Elkanah was a fool. For one, he married two women and thought it would be great. But who in the world can be "one flesh" with two persons?! When God saw that Adam was lonely, He made him Eve. He didn't make Eve and Sue. One husband for one wife. That's God's original design. More than one wife is way too crowded you can't breathe. One of the questions that I had a hard time answering before was, "Why did most of the Old Testament men marry more than one wife?" Well, God never intended them to marry more than one wife. Out of their hardheadiness they did what was not right before God. And because of that, they suffered. Hannah's hubby was caught in the middle of this turmoil- having a drunk wife and another wife who was very mean. Sadly enough, he didn't have an idea that it was his own doing that created this turmoil. In fact, he thought he was stopendous and that Hannah was some kind of a spoiled brat having tantrums for not having what she wanted. When he said, "Hannah, why weepest thou? and why eatest thou not? and why is thy heart grieved? am not I better to thee than ten sons?" He showed how half-witted he was. His sarcasm was not helping the situation to get better. Mocking his wife's grief was the most foolish thing a man could ever do to his wife. He had no idea how depressing it was for Hannah to be the center of redicule. He didn't know the loneliness a childless woman feels. He didn't know the feeling of being abandoned by God after praying for a very important thing for a long time.

Hannah finally found a great solution to end all of her troubles. Seek God. Pray like never before. Surrender to Him. Make an unbreakable vow! A vow that she fulfilled without a heavy heart. A vow that is regarded as stupidity in today's culture but might not be so in their time. A vow to give her child, if God would grant her prayer to have one, to serve Him all his life. This vow must have touched the heart of God. Or maybe it was the attitude of surrender in her heart toward God that made God grant her desire. God saw her heart and was pleased. Very pleased. Hannah had conceived a baby boy and she was praising God for the great blessing! Her neighbors and Elkanah's number 2 stopped picking on her. They began to dance with her except, maybe, for her husband's other wife. When she had baby Samuel, she devoted herself in nurturing him- nursing him for three years. That three years were so special for her. Because she knew that she had to give him to the temple, leaving him under the care of Eli when he was weaned. Three years of deep joy! Three years of feeling so complete! Three very short years of enjoying the sweet bond between a mother and a baby. Three years of teaching the baby to listen and respond when his name is called. Three years of teaching him to love God. That three years time flew so fast. It was time for her to bring him to the temple and leave him there.

I can't imagine how lonely she must have been while walking home from the temple. It must have been only by the grace of God that she was able to make it home. She fulfilled her vow to God even when it required her to be separated from her beloved son. With her separation anxiety came an unexplainable joy knowing that she was able to fulfill her vow. Like David, she must have said this also, "I will not offer anything that costs me nothing." It was the right thing for her to do. For granting her desire, an unprecedented love for God had grown in her heart. A child was everything for her but she knew that she didn't own him. God did.

Our children are given by God to us to love and nurture. Ultimately, they are His. As parents, we are His stewards. How we treat our children is a stewardship. One vital role we play is to form their hearts and minds into knowing that they are loved by our Heavenly Father and are accountable as to how they live and have their being to God. They need to understand this very truth before other people teach them to be godless.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Loving Ourselves

In her book, "Lies Women Believe...", Nancy Leigh De Moss addressed one of the lies that women today have been believing. She said that the world's prescription for those who are tortured by a sense of worthlessness is, "You need to love yourself." And that when Jesus tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves, the point is not that we need to love ourselves so that we can love others. Jesus is saying we need to give others the same attention and care we naturally give ourselves.

Is not this true? I know I don't need to love myself more than I already do, for if I do, I would surely become so engrossed with myself. Eventually, I would grow into some sort of a power puff girl thinking that I am the center of the universe and everything in it and that I have the power to control people and circumstances. "I need to love myself" is a common line that we hear from people who have lost their sense of pride due to giving so much of themselves in order to manipulate and control others.

I agree with Nancy when she said that if we get a toothache, we immediately look for a way to identify the problem and get rid of it. If we did not love ourselves, we would ignore the pain. But when someone else has a toothache, it is easy to be indifferent to his need- that's his problem. We naturally love ourselves; we do not naturally love others.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It's a Comma not a Period!

One of my favorite verses is Psalm 30:5, which says, "Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning." I'm glad that I have memorized this verse many years ago. It has really helped me get through tough circumstances in my life trusting Jesus for a victory. I wanted to impose memorizing this verse to women who imprison themselves in hopelessness and despair. Those who think that the troubles they are in right now would never end. Regardless of how serious a problem they are battling at present- infidelity of a husband, memories of child abuse and physical affliction, every thing is a comma and not a period here on earth. We cannot let our circumstances drown us into the ocean of depression. What can hopelessness do to us but to make us ugly! Trust the Lord to bring you through your circumstances victoriously and make a beautiful woman in you.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A Victim of Circumstances?

While attending one of the parties that my Filipino group organized 6 months ago, I met another young Filipino lady who is also married to an American guy. We seemed to click with each other after our first conversation. Maybe because she professed to be a Christian. She and her husband started visiting us in our house. We would just eat, talk and have fun. As time went by, I began to notice the negative tone in her language. She would bad-mouth some of the people that I know in our Filipino group. It progressed to speaking ill about her own siblings- of how she was mistreated by all of them. She would use the most disgusting word to describe her very bad idea of these people. She would also complain just about anything- how she felt like being overworked in her job, her unplanned pregnancy, having a very irresponsible step-son and the list can go on. She blamed all these circumstances for her all-time depressed mood. Until one day, I couldn't take it anymore. I literally told her to stop! We had an emotional conversation and I thought I lost her for good. We didn't talk for a couple months. Recently, we bumped into each other at a common friend's house. She hugged me. She smiled. Her aura has drastically changed. I saw happiness painted on her eyes. She said, "thank you for being my friend."

Many women today think that if their circumstances were different, they would be different. They feel that if their upbringing, their environment, the people around them were different, they would be more patient, more loving, more content and easier to live with. But this is not true. If it is, then we are victims. If we are victims, then we are not responsible- we can't help the way we are. But we are responsible! Responsible for our own responses to the circumstances. The truth is our circumstances do not make us what we are. They merely reveal what we are. Thank God for giving us these circumstances for by them we will know how we need to be changed by His grace.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Extremely Busy!

I've read that the average woman today has the equivalent of fifty full-time servants, in the modern, time saving devices and equipment. Isn't that amazing? I tried picturing myself back to the days when there were no washing machines, dryers, microwaves, vacuum cleaners and dishwashers. I simply couldn't imagine myself in it. I am more thankful to God that I live in this generation. But that's not really what I want to point out here. What I've been thinking is how many women of today could say that they don't have time to do everything they're supposed to do. Statements like "I'm so busy!", "We've got so much going on in our family!", "I just can't keep up with everything I've got to do!" and "I'm exhausted!" are disturbing to me. It seems like women try to do every thing under the sun. Part of the reason why a lot of women do this is to fit in today's crazy culture. The world today salutes women who do so many things including those that are inherent to men. Well, I don't buy it. I don't want to be so stressed out and eventually resort to depression pills. I want to be happy in the Lord! Here's how... follow Jesus' example. John 17:4 says, "I have glorified thee on earth; I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do..." There you go I am not going to follow the world's "to do" list for me. I simply cannot meet with every person who wants an appointment, call every person who wants to talk, counsel with every person who had a need, tackle every project that people think I would be good at, read all the books I'd like to read, do scrap-booking because it's hip among ladies, blog unnecessarily, party like there's no tomorrow, spend the kind of time I'd like to spend with my friends and keep every room in my house presentable for guests who drop in. It's just not physically possible for me. My goal is to have time only to do everything that is on God's "to do" list for me in a certain period of time. And right now it is loving and serving my husband and raising a godly daughter.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


I wrote about role reversal yesterday and I thought I would do a follow-up of it today. You know how we, wives, sometimes if not most of the time, think that our husbands should help us with the chores at home. We feel like our husbands have an equal obligation as we have in doing the household chores. In the same way, we feel that we have an equal obligation in meeting the financial needs of our families. So much equality issue has been placed between a man and a woman over the years . Feminism has been the source of this confusion.

God made the woman for the main purpose of providing the man a helper. Not the other way around. It is definitely not wrong for a husband to help at home but he is not obligated to do so. In the same way, the wife is not obligated to help with bringing in money to their home. Troubles come when they confuse these roles. The result, homes are producing emasculated husbands and super busy moms. Who suffers? Everybody! Especially the kids, who end up raised by baby sitters instead of their own mothers.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Role Reversal

I was in somebody's home recently and was intrigued by what I saw. The sight of a husband busying himself with the dishes and cleaning the kitchen and of a wife enjoying herself playing with their kids in the backyard. Role reversal?

Role reversal originated in the Garden of Eden when the father of all lies came to Mrs. Eve one day. She decided she would have a little talk with him. Later, he talked her into eating the forbidden fruit. The next thing we know she also gave the fruit to Mr. Adam, her husband, for a bite, who did NOTHING but followed his wife. The wife leading her husband! The husband who submitted himself to his wife! Role Reversal.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Divorce: Not an Option

"50% of all marriages in the America end in divorce."

The divorce rate in America for first marriage, vs second or third marriage
50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce, according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri.”

What a distasteful fact! Another statistics fact shows that divorces among professing born-again Christians is 30% of the whole divorce rate in the country. This fact makes it even sickening!

It is so sad that many women today think that divorce is a better option than staying in a bad marriage. What a deception! Apparently, these women do not acknowledge that there is no marriage God cannot heal and that there is no person God cannot change.

How easy for many women to put all the blame on their husbands when they feel discontented in their marriages. But even if much of the blame falls on the husband, women have to understand that they are not perfect either. Wives are also sinners, equally needing the grace of God.

Forgiveness is the only way to receive God's best! God has commanded us to forgive without limit. A wife's willingness to extend sacrificial love to her mate may be the means of his spiritual healing.

Nancy Leigh Demoss said in her book, "Lies Women believe..." "The enemy has made amess and a mockery out of marriage. His lies have resulted in countless fractured lives and homes. ONly the Truth has power to redeem, restore and renew."

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Lesson I've Learned

Long before our vacation to the East Coast, I had been looking forward to the fresh seafood available in the area. You see, I grew up just about a hundred feet away from the sea shore. Everyday, we had fish, otherwise, shrimp, crab, squid and literally all kinds of seafood you could name. A vacation to the East Coast was a perfect place for me. I planned to eat grilled fresh Tuna at least one meal per day while we were there. I felt so excited by the thought of it.

When we got there, things didn't turn out as I expected. I don't need to go on with the details. But yes, I was disappointed. I even acted like a perfect spoiled brat. For the last couple meals, I refused to feed myself with the food that was available. For doing that, I didn't only punish myself but also my nursing daughter and my husband who was so puzzled what went wrong. Deep in my mind, I was actually blaming my husband for not bringing us to the restaurant where I wanted to eat at. With that in mind, I started showing some really strange behavior. The thought that it was my husband's fault just kept coming and magnifying itself in my brain. Until I blew it off by verbalizing my disappointment. I totally sounded like some very frustrated, discontented and crazy fellow.

Yes, I acted foolishly. Oh, how easy for us women to see our husband's faults through a microscope and see our own faults through a telescope. Realizing this, I didn't waste time. I came to the Lord and repented of my sin. I also asked my husband to forgive me. Praise God I have a very loving and forgiving husband.

Monday, June 9, 2008

The Bride

Every girl has one grand dream and that is to someday become the most beautiful princess bride. Of who? Of the most handsome prince. As for me, it is a DREAM-COME-TRUE!

When I reached the age that most women get married, honestly, I started getting anxious. Questions like, "Will I be married to the man of my dreams?" But I didn't let that question manipulate me in such a way that I would make choices that jeopardize the coming true of my dream. Instead, I waited and waited and waited. Waiting is not fun, but it definitely is very rewarding. I didn't only waited, I also saved myself for the man God would send my way. I admit that along the way, I met several men that I thought would be my prince. But things with each of them were commonplace. Nothing special. Nothing grand. And something was wrong. I'd already convinced myself that when my prince would come, it would be perfectly beautiful. And that I would know that the time had come! I waited so many years for my prince to come. When he finally came, all the pains, worries and fears disappeared.

In the same way, the Church of Christ is eagerly anticipating for the coming of her Prince Bridegroom- the Lord Jesus Christ. As we wait for that glorious day- the marriage of the Lamb of God to us- His elect, we must save ourselves for Him alone. Let us not become deceived by those who come our way claiming to be Christ. "For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many." Matthew 24:5

Thursday, June 5, 2008


"All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)

There is a great need to realize that the verse above is not only spoken for a chosen few but for every Christian. We are all called to evangelize! All called to disciple!

One of the things that hinder us to disciple others is that we are not being discipled ourselves. We definitely not able to disciple others unless we are. It feels nice to say that we are mentoring others but it doesn't feel the same the other way around. Why is that? Simple! We like to feel important. We like the emotion that we are being looked up to and run to by those who are a little behind of us. But, in no way that this should be the driving force that thrusts us to reach out and disciple others. The only motivation should only be that we are simply obeying the Great Commission.

To be discipled is not as easy as it seems. It is only by the grace of God that we can allow others to speak to our lives according to the Word of God. By inviting godly people to mentor us, we are also inviting assault to our selfishness. Good disciplers don't only encourage us but they also rebuke, correct and teach us. We do not need people who affirm and flatter us all the time. We need mentors who help straighten our crooked paths by God's Word.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Our culture has been producing spoiled brats! Children as young as 7 years old have ipods. Even babies rooms are stuffed with unnecessary collections of toys. Christmas and Birthday wish lists are all about toys and clothes! Mothers stuff their kitchen with so many different kinds of small appliances. Master bedrooms must have walk-in closets to accommodate the owners' wardrobe accumulation. Morning newspapers must have catalogs of just about anything you could buy to add to your already full house! But hey, summer is coming and it's time for garage sales! You can sell what you have that you don't want and buy your neighbor's pair of shoes or electric beater.

So much discontentment in this world! It's sickening!

With the demise of manners in our current culture has also gone the loss of gratitude and contentment. I desire to teach my daughter to be grateful for what the Lord has given her, to be content for what she has and to understand that happiness is in living in simplicity. I think the creative and quickest way for her to learn the value of gratefulness and contentment is to let her experience a life away from a place where she could have anything she wants and see how the children across the world could smile and laugh and be happy with so little or nothing at all.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Run from Oprah, Run for your Life!

I first heard of Oprah Winfrey, as the most well-paid lady TV host in the world, when I was in college. I was pretty intrigued about her that I even started watching her shows once in a while. She didn't appear to be special. She didn't even appear to me as worth watching. So, really, I wasn't hooked on her shows. It's true that she has helped so many people's lives by giving away money, but so what? There are so many philanthropy figures in the world. She is no different than those who are giving away a little portion of their fortune to those who are living in dire straits. In other words, I've never admired her. But very sadly, so many of the women in America really admire her and made her an important icon in their lives. I even know of some professing Christians who are watching her shows regularly. But God is a good God all the time. He exposes her evil deeds and influence on people. If you are one of them who admire her, watch this video and know what kind of a person you are letting yourself to be influenced by.

Clearly, she denies Jesus as the only way. And by her ignorance of the Word, she said that God is jealous of her. Jealous of her???!!! Is she kidding me??? Well, that's what happen when people don't read and study the Bible! Let us pray for her salvation! But let's run from her influence! Let us not allow the garbage of the New Age religion that she is promoting and teaching to have a place in our lives and in our children's lives.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Special Women

God places women in our lives for a significant purpose. He uses some of them to mentor us; others, for us to mentor; and still others, to share fun and adventures in life with.

Lisa, my maid of honor and my daughter's godmother!

I met LISA DEVOT a few years ago in my hometown in the Philippines. I had the opportunity to work as her interpreter. I've always admired her strong and yet sweet personality and I've also admired her excellent speaking skills and her beautiful heart and mind. We don't talk often but we know that we are always there for each other.

I met Tricia Vogelsang at our new church a few months ago. She's the first lady who I've had the opportunity to be close to at church. She is a mother of 3 and has just graduated from college with a degree in Family Psychology. She is a very godly woman and has shown so much spiritual maturity. It's been great having her as a friend. She is the first person I think and go to when I just want to talk and listen to a woman of godly wisdom and contagious joy. Her sense of humor is refreshing!

From left to right: Lorelei, Maricris, Me and Mitchelle

These are three of the Pinays (Filipino ladies) who the Lord has placed in my life to love and inspire at present. All four of us are married to handsome American men. Being that I am the "Ate" in this group, I feel like God has given me a mission to build their faith and trust in Him and to be a channel of His care to them. In my journey with them, so far, I've learned the true meaning of loving unconditionally and unselfishly. I've learned that when you are out there building other people's lives, you need to be stripped off of your right to be offended. Otherwise, you would give up building them up and start tearing them down. I've started to be concern about them and stopped expecting that they would be concern of me. Pure love. That's what it's called. When I pray for them, I find myself praying earnestly.

I met Maricris when my husband and I went to a Birthing and Parenting Preparation class. Both of us were 8 months pregnant. She caught my attention because she was the only Asian-looking lady in our class besides me. I thought she was from Singapore. But I took a chance to ask her and found out that she was also Filipino. Cris is one of the smartest Pinays I've met. Her life story is phenomenal. I've been praying for her since the time I first met her. Something drew me to her. I didn't realize it was a God-thing. For a year, I always felt like she was hiding burdens behind her laughter. There were times that I thought that we would never pass through superficial friendship and that we would always have shallow conversations. Until one day... She was excitedly announcing to me that her son would have his one-year-old son would have his first Halloween costume. Immediately, I felt like I was being pushed to say that I would never allow my one-year-old baby to partake in any activities organized by the witches. And I went on preaching and confronting sins around us in this culture we are in. Then we got really personal to point of digging in of the issues in her life that she has been battling with and has been trying to win. I became bolder and bolder with love and by the grace of God. She ended up pouring out her burdens away. That was the beginning of our journey together as I help her grow in the Lord.

Anne K., a veteran missionary, is one of the women who God has blessed my life with. I would never forget how she inspired my life to cultivate a passion to love and serve the Lord. She showed me how to totally abandon my life into the hands of the Father. She told me that she was sent to Mongolia just to make my life in a foreign country stress-free and "the time of my life". She mentored me how to start a house church and evangelize and disciple the Mongolians. She showed me how to live a life of generosity and to truly have a heart for the poor. She was my best Bible teacher. Anne K. will always be a great inspiration to me.

Ganaa was one of my employers back in Mongolia. She taught me how to live like a Mongolian lady. She never treated me like I was just one of her employees. She showed me a motherly love- Mongolian-style. She wasn't a perfect lady I've known being that she only believed in Jesus Christ after I shared my faith with her, but she left an important mark in my heart by loving me sincerely and helping provide for my needs.

Catherine Basnig, Tiyeen as I fondly called her, was loved and is loved and never forgotten! I was a fresh graduate from College when God had a special tag in my heart to pray for her. I got to know her through my sister and later was formally introduced to me by my brother, who was courting her that time. She was one with a strong personality. Somehow, I felt drawn to her. I started investigating about her and gathered quite a bit of information enough for me know her. She was smart but really was not in a hurry to finish college so to speak. She hung around bad company. I was so intrigued by her life and decided to fast and pray for her salvation. After three days of fasting and praying, I went to see her at the college campus. I told her I wanted to talk to her privately. She was a little surprised. We went to the east side of the sports grandstand, sat and talked. The sunset was dramatic. When I started to ask about her family, she started crying and pouring her heart out. To comfort her, I said that earthly fathers fail but we have a perfect Father in heaven who never fails us. The times we spent after that evening were times of deepening our knowledge of this Father who never leaves us nor forsake us. Her life and desires were never the same. My life was never the same- I got the closest friend ever. A friend I grew up loving and serving God together!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

More Than a Pretty Face

A woman's countenance, most of the time, mirrors the condition of her heart. Our actions and attitudes are an indication where our roots are planted. When our hearts are rooted in the love, peace and joy of Christ, our outward countenance radiates strength, joy, love and deep sense of well-being. Along these beautiful attitudes, our facial features also tend to soften and skin lines become tempered. No amount of make-up, perfume, professional styling, high fashion, or personal fitness program can create this kind of beauty. And no beautification regimen or stylish clothes or social graces training can mask an unattractive heart- a heart that is full of envy and jealousy, discontentment in life, controlling spirit, worldliness, materialism, selfishness, bitterness and all kinds of negative spirits.

For a godly woman a simple routine of good hygiene, healthy skin care and appropriate attire, gracious manners is enough. Most importantly, having our hearts filled with the Holy Spirit empowers us with vitality and enthusiasm, making us a magnet to other people. Our only goal is to attract others to our lives and ultimately have an opportunity to share our testimony of the Christ who dwells within us.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My favorite speaker

Here is the link to the website of one of my favorite speakers, Nancy Leigh DeMoss. I listen to her everyday. She really is an exemplary speaker. I also read her books. They are excellent!

Terrible song!

Have you ever hated a particular song? You hated it so much that it itches your skin! I have. Here is the first stanza...

I am woman, hear me roar In numbers too big to ignore And I know too much to go back an' pretend 'Cause I've heard it all before And I've been down there on the floor No one's ever gonna keep me down again.

Roaring woman! What a terrible description of a woman. There are so many women today who have a lifestyle of roaring. They cry their "own way" out loud. They want everybody to tiptoe around them and grant whatever they want. Some ladies don't roar loud. But it doesn't mean they aren't roaring! Roaring women get depressed a lot. Why? The answer is simple, the more we desire to control the more frustrated we will get. It is not about us. It is not about what we want. But it is all about God and what He wants to accomplish in and through our lives.

Here is a song that every woman must love to hear and sing...

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Fear of the Lord

Our pastor preached about the fear of the Lord yesterday. He talked about how Aaron's sons were consumed by the fire of the Lord causing their deaths when they acted irreverently toward Him. This morning, I was reading the first 10 chapters of 1 Chronicles. I came across the verses that mention about how Uzza was struck by God to death when he acted in a way that did not show reverence of His presence. This makes me think about one of God's characters, being a JUST GOD. I was wondering why so many people today show no reverence of God's presence. Obviously, they do not have the Fear of the Lord. I've been noticing that the subject on fearing the Lord has been intentionally left out. Preachers do not even want to preach about it in their churches, saying that they do not want people to be walking a Christian life in fear. But if Jesus Himself preached about hell and the coming judgment more than a hundred times, why can't we talk about it? We all need to know and remember that God is a JUST God. He is a righteous Judge! A righteous judge would never let the guilty go unpunished. This truth should create in us "the fear of the Lord". This kind of fear helps us to get rid of every unholy activity we are engaging in our lives by the help of the Holy Spirit. This kind of fear ushers us to love the Lord our God with everything we are and everything we have. This kind of fear is the defining character that places a woman in an honor that surpasses the attractive reputation of other noble women.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Noble Woman

Proverbs 31:29 says "Many women do noble things, but you excel them all." I was thinking about what makes the woman in Proverbs 31 surpass other noble women. Both are noble. Both have physical stamina and hardworking. Both are attractive. Both contribute to the financial wellness of their households. Both have "beauty and brains". The following verse (verse 30) discloses the line that clearly separates the two. "Charm is deceitful, beauty is vain, but a woman who FEARS THE LORD, she is to be praised." What makes a noble woman excel other noble women? She fears the Lord. She has an exceptional wisdom! Proverbs 1:7 says, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of WISDOM, but fools despise wisdom and instruction."

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Becoming a woman that God designed me to be

I've been working on becoming a woman that God wants me to be. I am a firm believer that every woman is created with a reflection of God's beauty. Wherever I am today- spiritually, emotionally, physically and mentally- deep inside me, there is this "God's standard of beauty" that is waiting for a breakthrough. I've been thinking a lot about how the God pictures a beautiful woman. I've seen and known a lot of women who are very obsessed with beauty. They think perfect make-up, fashionable clothes, pretty sandals, very thin bodies and etc. make them beautiful. Usually, women of this category are attractive until they open their mouth to speak. For all they could say is shopping, fashion and comparing themselves with other women and nothing deep. On the other hand, I've also seen and known women who just don't care about their appearance. Some just gave up on the idea that they could become beautiful regardless of what they look like now. Some are just lazy to take care of their bodies. They hide their insecurities by appearing to be knowledgeable, thoughtful of others and funny. They say, appearance doesn't matter, being moral is. Others define a beautiful woman in three words, "beauty and brain". But how do I define a beautiful woman? I admit that I am still in the process of trying to define it according to God's perspective. But here is what I came up so far... a beautiful woman is a one who was redeemed by the blood of Jesus through her repentance of her fallen nature or sinfulness. Whose heart is filled with a passion for godliness and a deep desire to obey the Lord whatever it costs her. Make-up, fashion, being moral, being knowledgeable, academic achievement (high education, as they put it), hard work and etc., they are not necessarily bad but an obsessive desire for them, taking pride in them and without a heart that is redeemed by the Lord Jesus- a spiritual regeneration, is a description of an "ugly woman".