Of Life and Facials

After work, I went to a facial cleaning center. I went to one referred to by a family friend. It’s been five years, I think, since I last had one. So, imagine how much dirt my big pores have accumulated through the years.

It was a bit painful. Some tears fell uncontrollably. Haha. Lumuluha yung mata ko kahit nakapikit.

While the extraction and cleaning are being done to my face and while I’m on my way home, I’ve realized how it could relate to life.

1. There are times when beauty comes after the pain and the breaking.

Though the facial procedure somehow hurts a bit, soon, it will reveal a better, cleaner skin. My face may look a bit sore now from the extractions, but it will look better soon. I hope! Haha

The same goes with life. There are times when a better, more beautiful version of us emerges after a painful situation. BUT, this could only happen if this pain is experienced under the hands of a professional. With facials, the dermatechnician. The extractions may be a bit painful, but she sure knows what she’s doing.

With life, it’s God. Under His supervision, pain can turn to something good.

2. If there’s something to be fixed, don’t wait toooooooo long before addressing it. Doing so can spare us from unnecessary pain.

If I only went to a facial center earlier, there won’t be as much whiteheads and blackheads to be removed through painful extractions. There won’t be much to be removed to have a cleaner, better skin.

The same goes with life, if we would only come as early as we can to have our lives and character be fixed by God, we can spare ourselves from additional pain. Mas patatagalin, mas maraming aayusin, pwedeng maging mas masakit.

3. Our version 2.0 should be maintained and regularly brought back to the one who made it that way.

It takes effort and discipline to keep a clean skin always clean and free from impurities. Although impurities can’t be completely eliminated, with discipline (eating healthier, going to the derma regularly, and having healthy habits) it can be less and less.

In life, as a Christian specifically, it also takes discipline on my/our part to make every effort to protect our salvation so we won’t go back to our old, sinful ways. More than feeding the soul with the Word and thinking of Godly thoughts, I should always go back to Him who made me new. Always.

So, yeah. That’s how my afternoon facial cleansing went. I think it did way more than just clean my face. 💛

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What It’s Like to Find Love That’s Better Than the Fairytales

Growing up to fairytales and Disney, we somehow dreamt of having a fairytale love story of our own someday—magic-filled moments, happily ever after, and someone to share it with. But as we grow older, we realize that our realities are way, way different than the fairytales we dreamt of having.

But, at one point in our life, we’ll meet someone who can give us the kind of love that goes beyond the love shown in fairytales. A bigger kind of love. A love that goes beyond the promise of a happily ever after.

I’m glad to have come across this kind of love. I didn’t find it though. That love found me.

His love was way beyond the magic of how Beauty fell for the Beast. His beauty loved the beast he found in me. He saw my past, faults, flaws, and failures, and yet still chose to love me. He saw me in my darkest moments. He saw the ugly parts I have always tried to hide. Yet, He loved me as is where is and saw through me.

As I surrendered to the love he’s offering me, the ugliness of the curse of my beastly self was broken. Though he loved me as is where is as a beast, his love redeemed and transformed me—and still continues to do so—so I could be my best. Someone as beautiful as he is. I was made new. I was made beautiful again.

His love was far greater than that given by the Prince to Snow White. Once in my life, like Snow White, I was also fooled by the false promises of life’s magic apples, things that look promising but are sugar-coated poison. But, like the Prince, someone came and rescued me from my soul that’s holding on for her dear life.

Like how the Prince’s true love’s kiss awoken Snow White from her sleep, the true love that found me, broke the spell of sin’s poison and awakened my soul from being dead to it. But, his true love came not in the form of a kiss, it came in a cross. And, one day, I too will be taken by my Prince to his kingdom in the heavens.

His love is accepting, like Prince Charming’s love for Cinderella. He didn’t love me for how I looked. His love took me as I am. It is not deterred by what I can give him, my physical attributes, or by my status in life. He loved me not because I was worthy of his love. He just did.

Like Prince Charming, my Prince searched everywhere to find the woman he loves, me. And when he did find me, in my rawest, unadorned, and most real state, it is when he asked me to be his. My Prince asked for my hand even when I was no longer the beautiful ‘princess’ in a sparkly gown, adorned with luxury.

All this, you too, can find. All this you can find in God.

There’s no one too beastly for His love.
There’s no one too lifeless for Him to breathe new life to.
There’s no one too lost that He can’t find.

There’s no one deserving of His love. But, still, He gives it freely and generously none the less.

The question is, will you allow yourself to be found by Him? The real promise of happily ever after awaits you. His love is not make-believe. ♥

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Update:
Today, April 25, this piece got published on Thought Catalog! 
Here’s the link: https://tcat.tc/2HX8zay 

 

“You’ve Got Mail”

When mama got home tonight, she handed me a mail. It’s no secret to people who read my blog (mayron nga ba? haha) that I get excited every time I receive physical cards and letters. Since I’m not expecting receiving one, I was really happy.

It was from one of my sponsored children from World Vision. It made me all the more happy.

Unlike the previous ones, this time, this thank you card was from my second sponsored child. As I can remember, this was the first time I’m receiving a picture and card from him. For me, it was extra special and personal.

Looking at his picture, I felt nostalgic.

It all started in April 2014.

Lunch break. I remember it was at that time when God impressed in my heart that my money and the ability to produce wealth–regardless of how big or small–are all from Him. That we’ve been blessed with time, talent, resources, etc. that we can also share with others. 

That leading and the example I saw from my mom led me to also bless someone through World Vision. I started sponsoring a child in April 2014. Then, two years after, when I got a salary increase from my present job, God impressed in me to sponsor another one. The mail I received tonight was from him.

There were times when I feel insecure, thinking I haven’t done much after graduating in 2013. Five years after, I am nowhere near the “success” my batch mates and friends have attained. But, I know these are all mere lies from the enemy. God has a far greater definition for “success,” and that’s what I should focus more on.

I am glad to have received this mail today.

Letters like this one make me realize that I am blessed to be given an opportunity to invest in something bigger — someone else. 

But, this experience I can’t boast of. What I was able to give isn’t mine in the first place. It was God’s. And, the heart to give, I can only credit to Him as well.

I’ve realized that sponsoring children through World Vision has been my greatest invesment (so far). Because though I don’t earn much, somehow, I get to see God work through someone else’s life in doing so. And, I think that makes it all worth it.

Today’s mail has been an encouragement. Really.  And, I’m thankful to have received it at this moment. It was just in time.

P.S. Honestly, I’m having second thoughts on whether I will keep this entry public or private. But as much as I want to keep this a secret, I also want to share this experience to whoever might read this. 

If you want to be involved and experience this joy as well, you can get to know more about World Vision and what they do by visiting their website here: www.worldvision.org.ph

P.S.S. This isn’t a sponsored post. 🙂

Prose | Broken Things

​A guitar with a broken string, though it may still make music, won’t play the same music it plays. A clock with a broken mechanism, though it may be right twice in a day, won’t serve the purpose why it’s made. 

All the other broken things–and broken people–need repair.

And it’s never a sign of weakness to admit the need for one. So, dear broken one, go back to your maker. He sure knows how to make your broken parts whole and good as new. Only then can you be your best version yet again.

As you go back, let humility be the free ticket to take you there.

041818

Prose | Embrace

Frustrations came. Pain came right after. I’m not a great host. I want to shoo them and pretend nobody’s home. But, I know I can’t. Because even if I act as if they weren’t there, the truth won’t be altered.

What should I do? I don’t want to welcome them in again. But, if I kept the door shut, will they truly go away? They’re outside my door. Waiting. And, there they will always be.

Embrace it, they said. So I did.

And slowly, as I embraced them, little by little, they disappeared. When I allowed the tears to flow, they were washed away.

And while painfully doing so, in my tears and my why’s, little did I know or I might have just forgotten, I was caught in a far bigger embrace. I was caught and carried in His.

Then, I remembered.
It’s easier as “us” than “I” alone.

Life Lately | Febru-weary

As much as I only want to post mostly sunny, positive, and good things on this blog, I’ve come to realize that hindi pala keri. Life isn’t all sunny episodes. And, I don’t want to portray one that has it all together (in this life nor in this blog)– because, there’s no such thing.

It’s only been a week and I’ve already cried a lot for this month already. (And, no, it isn’t because I don’t have anyone for the ‘love’ month. Hehe.) It’s just that I felt so tired, weary, and zapped out from many different things. Then, along with that, the insecuritiessss dropped by once in a while too. It was draining.

As my short devo (I haven’t been consistent in doing this for the past week) reminded me yesterday: Take heart, struggler.

I thank God for using this 🔝 devo to remind me to keep pressing on, cheer me up, and renew my sight and perspective. I also thank Him for using a friend dear to me to remind me that even in the midst of a ‘febru-weary,’ I still have a lot of things to be grateful for that I’m losing sight of.

I’ve realized that I’ve grown tired of asking. I’ve stopped asking, seeking, and knocking consistently only to realize that God is the very thing and person I need in this life.

So, in the tears and the whys, I hope that a warrior rises up again in the ‘weary-er’ in me.

P.S. There’s still three more weeks before the month ends. To the ‘weary-ers’ like me, let’s fight and faith it. Life is no easy feat. It’s okay to cry. But, it feels much better to cry it all out to God. So yeah, together, let’s take heart. 💛

What to Tell Yourself When Your Failures Start to Limit You

As I was sorting my files on my Google drive, I came upon this piece I wrote (but never published anywhere) in Feb of 2017. I actually forgot about it after writing it. But, I know seeing it again this new year is no accident. It’s a great read to help me start 2018.

P.S. Yeah, I’m back at it (sort of). I just feel the need to share this. To share is why I blog, I remembered. Sooooo, I hope you get inspired and cheered up the same way I did. ❤


Your past failures will always haunt you. They will make your life a horror story and paralyze you with fear every waking day. They can limit you, make you lose your hope in yourself and in the world. With their tiny yet powerful voices, they will tell you to stop going.

The voices of the ghosts of your past will always be loud and haunting, but how they will affect you solely depends on you. Will you entertain and welcome them into the doors of your thoughts or silence them before they can silence you?

Your failed resolutions, career, relationships, and dreams are all things of the past. Don’t let them weigh you down forever. Take them with you in the future only as lessons. You’ve got forever to go — many years still ahead of you.

Cry as much as you want and let your tears wash down all the labels your past failures marked all over your soul. Free yourself.

Never let anyone belittle you and define you for your past failures, especially yourself. Fake hope until it becomes real to you because one day, in the moment you least expect it, someone will see all of you and still see potential.

Someone will see you past your failures. He will see you not as a hopeless project but a gem in the making. He will see the great future you’ve been failing to see yourself — the future that’s been clouded by the mistakes you used to define and dictate you and your life.

It won’t be easy. Pity parties will always be inviting. But after you tire yourself from crying and seeing yourself short, get back up. Never give up on yourself. You owe yourself that.

When opportunities start to knock again at your door, leave whatever you’re doing and welcome them before your fears knock them over. You’re only a few steps away to be back in your game.

However, if you happen to fail again; remember that our God is a God of never-ending chances. Don’t be afraid to humble yourself and take another chance He offers you today and will offer you for always.

Don’t be too hard on yourself.
You are more than your failures.

Give yourself a chance to start again.
Don’t let your past limit you.

Cheers to #AllThingsNew for 2018!


Update:
Today, March 2, this piece got published on Thought Catalog! 
Here’s the link: http://tcat.tc/2FJvuoE