12 Things I’m Grateful for this 2012

2013 is just around the corner! 2012 has been a great year for me. It was a year full of surprises and grace. It was also a roller coaster ride of ups and downs.

Now I am starting to recall the goodness of God through out the year. I know God’s promises never fail. He promised that He is always with us — I believe He really is, and will continue to fulfill it this 2013 till the end of time (of course no one knows when…)

Here are the 12 things I am grateful to God this 2012:

12. I got a Mac Book Pro. The ministry provided me a laptop that I can use to work efficiently.

11. I got an Iphone 4s. My wife “forced” me to get one. Globe had a free Iphone 4s plan, for me it was a good switch from my android phone to the Iphone.

10. Me and my wife lives in a good home. We are really grateful how God started our marriage in a lovely home. Thinking about it, not every couple have an opportunity like we have.

9. God gave me an opportunity to lead a growing campus ministry in Victory Malate.

8. We have a 2 new LifeBox facility near Taft Avenue. These will give us a lot of open doors this 2013.

7. I have a great team leading with me. Without them the campus ministry will be a mess. Thank you guys for standing with me.

6. I have a great leaders in the ministry that coaches and guides me in my walk in Christ!

6. I got my Non-Pro driving license this year. Now I can legally drive!

5. My wife’s parents came home from U.S. for our wedding. It’s a prayer that we have that was answered big time.

4. I found new friends in the Couples’ Ministry. It’s too many to mention how many they are, but we are grateful that we found people who stands and enjoys life with us.

3. My family. They are the best people in the world. They love me so much and they showed a lot of support in my life.

2. My wife. Our wedding this year really is a gift from God. Not just the event, but God giving me a beautiful and smart woman like my wife is a great gift from God. I really don’t deserve a woman like her yet she is one of God’s grace in my life.

1. The love of God for me. My life is not enough to be fully grateful to what God has done in my life. Since He intervened, my life was restored to its fullness. God is faithful. His love is always new every single day.

This list is not enough for me to express how grateful I am this year. For the blessings I received, lessons I learned, relationships built and hurdles I overcame. I am grateful to God. I am expecting for more His work in my life (and now with my wife) because my God is still the same. He is faithful this year and will remain faithful all through out.

What about you? What are you grateful for this 2012?

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How to Enjoy Your Christmas while You’re Single

Christmas is just few days away and many are rushing to buy gifts and preparations for the awaited holiday. Many are enjoying the season of parties and long rest but usually this season also reminds single people of what they don’t have — a romantic relationship. 

I know this because I have been through this when I was single. I knew as a single we are complete in Christ but we can’t neglect the fact that we long for this part of our life where we can enjoy this important season with someone special. But the longing should not be an excuse to not enjoy and miss out on what is important this Christmas. Instead, you as a single person can maximize what you have. Here are some tips that you can do this Christmas while you are single.

1. Maximize your time in friendships – This is the best way to do this holiday, invest in friendships. Nothing really beats a strongly built friendship. Enjoy and build with people while you have the luxury of time this holiday.

2. Change your perspective about your singleness – This is usually the root of sadness in the midst of the happiness of the season. Don’t think you are less because you are single. You actually have a lot of advantages in this season of your life. Remember that this time is a gift from God and what you make out of it will be a gift to your future spouse.

3. Discover your passions in life – This holiday gives us a lot of time to think and explore what we really want to be and to do in life. Discover your strengths to maximize and weaknesses to manage.

4. Do not eat alone – This might sound simple but for people who are usually eating alone, try to break the habit of eating alone and get a friend to talk with.

 

Again, your season is a gift of God for you. Enjoy it this Christmas with people and thank God for His wonderful gift of life that we have in Jesus.

 

What are other things you think a single person can do to enjoy more this season? 

Secrets for a Lasting Relationship

Just came back from an overnight retreat for married couples. It was really a relaxing and mind opening experience. I believe I learned 10 years worth of lessons for my married life. I’m really blessed to be surrounded with godly husbands and wives who also experienced the same joys and challenges in their marriage.

I met a couple in the retreat who were married 53 years! Whew! Talking about lifetime commitment in marriage. Tito Bomboy and Tita Vicky Fabregas shared their testimony of how God lead their marriage, the good times, the bad times and the redeemed times. Hearing them really gave me and my wife a great vision of marriage and how we can love and respect each other more. It’s a life-changing experience.

I have two take aways that I want to share. If you are student or single person, you can contextualize these things and it will really help you in handling your future relationship.

1. Forgiveness – I had a chance of asking Tito Bomboy about forgiveness in the context of marriage. What he answered was really a turn around moment for me. He said, “In marriage, you have to take away pride and unforgiveness to last long in marriage. What is important to you, your hurt or your love for your wife?” This question will really resonate in my life as long as I live.

2. Commitment – I really appreciate how it was defined in the retreat by Pastor Paolo Punzalan. He said, “Commitment is making a choice to give up other choices.

It was a great learning experience for us. More than that, it caused my heart to change to love people more especially my wife.

What other principles that can be of help to enjoy and last long in marriage?

Men: Questions You Need to Ask When You Decide to Lay Down Your Intention to a Woman

This is a remake of my previous blog 2 years ago about laying down your intention of courtship to a woman. I revised some parts to be more handy and practical for men who are planning to lay down their intention of courtship to a woman.

Whenever single men ask me about laying down their intention to a woman I realize I have cookie cut answer to them based on the experience that I had with my wife. But this is just a personal thing for me, but I have been guided by these principles that lead me to where I am now. These thoughts may not work for some depending on the culture they’re living in, but the principles and questions are timeless for men who really want to lay a clear and strong foundation towards marriage. Women, you are welcome to read so that you’ll know how men think through this.

These are wisdom I got from my pastors and my mentors in the area of relationships. But let me define first for the single men and women what is “laying down of intention”. It’s clarifying your intention of courtship to the woman you want to marry.

The premise of this process is a great friendship. I believe without the foundation of friendship, entering to a romantic relationship would be very difficult.

Here are the principles in question form that I share when I tell eligible men how I laid my intention to my wife.

1. Why do I have to lay down my intention of courting her?

It’s helpful to ask yourself the purpose, why you want to express your feelings to a woman. Here are some good questions to ask yourself:

  • Am I willing to change my current status of being single to someone who will pursue a relationship?
  • Do I see marriage at the end of courtship?
  • Am I willing to pursue her even if she says no?

2. Who are the godly husbands (not single men) that I know and who I can talk with about expressing my feelings to the woman I want to court?

It’s really wise to talk with people who have gone ahead of you. It will challenge your desire to do it on your own but will definitely save you a lot of heart aches.

3. How can I be clear in expressing my intentions to her in a manner that will not defraud or communicate uncertainty?

Be clear in communicating how you feel about her. You can tell her how much you appreciate her and would want your present relationship to level up from friendship to courtship. The wordings are usually best made with the help of men who has gone ahead of you. Seek help about this.

If she says yes, its wise to really clarify at that point your role for each other. As men this is our responsibility. We don’t assume they’ll know what to do after they said yes to you. In my case, I told Char that she is not my girlfriend when she said yes to me in courtship and I’m not his boyfriend, meaning she is not obliged to respond to me whenever I pursue her. I want her to feel that she is pursued at this stage and not obliged to always entertain my moves towards her.

If she says no, it’s still wise to clarify what is she saying no for:

  • Is she saying no to you? This might be a deciding point whether you need to wait more or pursue in the future.
  • Is she saying no to the timing? This can be a deciding point for both of you to pray more about it and ask more counsel how to navigate through it.

These are the principles and questions that guided me when I was going through that season of transition from being single to married. Hope this serves more as a guide to a wiser decision as you believe God to guide you in your walk as a single person.

What advice can you give single men how to be clear with their intentions to the woman they plan to pursue?

Love is not…

My wife and I watched “A Little Thing Called Love”, a Thai chic flick movie about a school girl falling in

A little thing called Love…What do we really mean when we talk about love?

love with her school mate. We enjoyed watching it, but I have thought of 10 things I believe what love is not.

Love is not…

  1. a romantic emotion to pursue someone or be with someone.
  2. a condition of being fulfilled by someone
  3. a definition of the condition of the heart. (I’m in love!)
  4. when you can’t sleep because you keep on thinking about someone.
  5. when you can’t concentrate in what you doing.
  6. when you’re smiling even when no one is around.
  7. when you’re inspired to do your assignments, project or work.
  8. when you want to give a letter, roses and/or chocolates to someone special.
  9. when you spend time talking more than 8 hours!
  10. when you’re bursting to say what you feel for the person.

I believe love is more than these, it’s not just an emotion but a decision shown in action to a person not necessarily in agreement with you. That is somehow what I see in the Bible when Jesus loved the people he was with when He was here on earth.

What is love for you? How can you show true love to other people today?

10 Things I want to Tell Single Women

I want to respond to my wife’s blog about 10 things she wants to tell single men. I got 10 things to say as well to single

10 things I want to say to single women 🙂

women this time. Here are my 10:

1. You are called to wait.

2. You are designed to be pursued. Be secure. You are not less of a woman when no one pursues you.

3. You are God’s representative of beauty. It’s ok to be beautiful inside and out.

4. Modest is the new Hottest. For godly men, modesty is still the best policy. You might get an attention but not respect.

5. Be gentle. It doesn’t mean you don’t do anything or speak softly. It just means don’t go ahead of a man.

6. To much make up will not make you more beautiful. As a quote says, “Simplicity is beauty.”

7. Avoid assumption when men try to be nice to you.

8. Do not entertain a suitor if you really don’t have anything for the guy. A straight forward NO is very much appreciated.

9. Being “touchy” will not be of help to you. You can be taken advantage of if you continue doing it.

10. What you make out of your single life will be a gift to your future husband. Build your best character as a gift to your future.

Is there anymore we can give as a tip for single women? Hope to see your tips in the comment box.