Willing to be Illuminated and Pierced

Posts tagged ‘humility’

Acting Like A Queen

“Hegai liked Esther and she won his favor. He lost no time in beginning her beauty treatment of massage and special diet. He gave her the best place in the harem and assigned seven young women specially chosen from the royal palace to serve her.”

Esther 2:9

I’ve always felt a dislike towards rich or powerful people. They seem snobbish towards the poor and the disadvantaged. But what I don’t realise is sometimes their regality is a reflection of their true identity that is honorable and pure.

Esther must have been regal in every way, the reason she was chosen to be the Queen of Persia. The six-month treatment given to her seemed to have spoiled her well. But it’s not meant to spoil her. It was meant to mold her into what she was meant to be.

I have been battling with an orphan mindset for a long time. (Maybe that’s why I love to recite the line, “Alms, alms…spare me a piece of bread” with wide, teary Puss In Boots eyes when I was in high school…nah.) But really, I’m 31 but I would move around like a sorry little girl by thinking I should not become better than others. I have always thought I’d offend people when I do. And this what hinders me to my calling.

I believe I have been called to be a leader since I was a kid. I have been placed as a leader in school projects but would not fare well, I believe. Others would see a leadership potential in me that I could hardly see. But I’d always shy away…

But no matter how I run away from the call, it always follow me. There are times I’d do well as an elder, an ate, a leader. But at the back of my mind, I’d tell myself I can’t do this…it’s because I’m afraid of failing.

But Esther, an orphan, did not act like one. Instead, she stood out among others by going beyond the notch. Before she became one, she already acted as a queen and already had the heart of a queen. Besides that, she dislodges all notion that all powerful and rich leaders are aloof and distant to commoners as she saves her Jewish people from being destroyed under Haman’s plan.

Romans 8:17 says, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”

So being a co-heir is like being adopted into the family of God! Because we accept Jesus into our lives, we share in His inheritance, the glory and yes, even sufferings. But I believe these sufferings are not meant to punish us but they are to refine us, knowing that Jesus Himself has carried the punishment meant for us on the cross. 

I need to act as one who is in authority, just like Jesus. I should not stalk around like a little orphaned girl asking for alms while the Father is willing to give the best for me. I need grace – extra, extra grace to get out of the wounds of the past and break off from the pride of the pity party in order to take the crown and overcome in love and boldness. May I become totally free, so as not to be hindered from what I am being called for.

Perfection From Imperfection

Imperfection irritates most of us. I’m sure, all of us have come to a point wondering why we’re imperfect, wishing we got the qualities that others have. But I believe there is a purpose to our imperfection.

It has been said that there are dangers to being perfect. It can make us arrogant, as if don’t need God and man. I’m sure you’d expect me to say that we are made imperfect so we would depend on God. Yes, that’s true. But more than that, I believe that in our imperfection, we are also taught to love others, as well.

I learned this in our prayer group, whom I always stay with every weekends. It’s not a perfect group, each of us have qualities that the other wouldn’t like. There are times that we would be offended to one another. But together we grew, and through each other, there are some qualities in our characters that have been sharpened or filled. When one needs help, like a prayer request or advice, the other would share a piece of wisdom that may be of help. Sometimes, a constructive criticism or rebuke can awaken us from flaws that we have. A word of encouragement brightens a part of ourselves that could be wearied. It’s like that some of us have a missing puzzle piece that only that other can fill.

I have heard of church fights and church splits so many times and the reason that I could hear is due to out of offense of their leaders or other churchmates. There are no perfect churches. Each of us is a broken jar. When we cast aside our bitterness and pride, we can see the value of each other and help mending the character of each other. Though we may be right at one point and the party that offended us are wrong, rebellion is a sign of pride. Instead of reacting in bitterness, why not pray for that person’s welfare? I believe, each of us needs to be covered in prayer, and it can uphold the character of the person we pray for and molds us to love others dispite of the offense done to us.

Never question God why we are made imperfect. In everything, there is a reason that only He understands. In time, we will know how this imperfection molds us to become better in love, humility, and righteousness.

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Capturing the Broader Perception

May bayad po yung bata (Is the seat for the child paid)?” A pregnant lady asked another bus passenger rather loudly, her voice sounded quite scandalous in the fully loaded bus to Manila.

Sitting comfortably with a little boy beside her, she said “Oo (Yes).” I was ignoring them until an older lady sitting with the boy and mother began to retort.

Kaya nga nakaupo yung bata kasi binayaran (That’s why the child is sitting because his seat has been paid)” She said in a croaked voice. Now the pregnant lady was already given a seat by a younger man. She heard the old lady’s loud murmur and answered back. “Nagtatanong lang naman po (I just asked).” But the old lady kept on murmuring and even called the pregnant lady crazy.

Now, I wondered to myself, if she, a grandmother herself, had she not been into the pains of childbirth, too?

Besides, all the pregnant lady wanted was a seat, as she was already heavy with a child.

But instead of offering her a seat, she was shunned away…maybe offended at the tone of her voice or her seemingly strong presence. The woman was trying to be strong though I’m sure was feeling uneasy.

But sadly, the grandmother seemed to have lost the broader perspective.

I understand they have paid the child’s seat, and the boy deserve it in place of that payment. But should these people have had the broader perspective of understanding the pregnant lady and her condition, I guess, they would have been even more blessed.

Most people have lost the broader perspective and have only focused on themselves. We have the right to for their rights, to shun off every offense, but we don’t see the need of others.

The Bible tells us to regard others better than ourselves. The call of humility is easy to scream at, but the endowment of this trait into our system is not that easy.

We have been taught to get our rights, but our culture has not taught us to open our eyes and be sensitive to the needs of others.

Thus, we fight against each other to get our rights, like dogs eating each other for a piece of stale bread.

How should we get a broader persepective? Only when we silence our own selfishness, try to get into the shoes of others, and sacrifice even a little bit of ourselves for them.

I admit, I’m still at this battling stage. And with this society, the need to learn humility, as my fellowmen also has the same needs and rights as I do.

And as a fellow human being, I must not disregard to my fellow man their needs and rights as I do have.

But it’s a long road before everyone in this society, even me, to capture the broader perspective.

But let’s begin that journey now.

Forgiving the Forgiven

I could have completely cut my ties with him. He used to be a dear friend, but the malicious public made us rift apart. I hated him for being too inexpressive while playing along with the teasings of the multitudes. He himself thought I was playing along.

But I was already too offended.

In my resentment, I expressed myself through a text message that he was a fool, a promise-breaker, and a liar. He was surprised and saddened, asking me to forgive him.

I tried to keep my silence and ignore him forever. But deep inside, I can hear the voice of Love saying, “Forgive him…”

It was the Lord Himself. He reminded me on why I started praying for this person and with it I said, “Let’s fight for him in prayer.”

So, I braved myself to ask him to meet me at the canteen the following day, or I’ll leave in five minutes.

He did show up immediately.

For the first time we had a very serious talk. It was so different from the other conversations we had, which were not that deep and serious.

He explained his side to me, telling me that everything he promised are true and was hopeful they will happen.

But due to circumstances in our jobs, he was trying to juggle with everything he considers, his family and his friends including me.

Yes, for the first time I heard it straight from his lips. And looking at his eyes he was sincere.

He told me much more that I did not know, the deep side of him that I did not understand.

I was too proud to ignore him, without really hearing him.

Should I have not initiated to talk to him, our friendship would have been ruined and bitterness would have swallowed me up.

It is true that when you love, you must learn how to bravely confront and listen with love and humility.

In the end, I understand how precious this person is as I have been precious to him too.

I guess this is how the Lord loves him too, for He is faithful to begin answers to my prayers and how He heard me to continually fight for him.

All in all, I learned that love takes one to communicate deeply and love is not to be kept in frustration as it can be released through forgiveness.

War of Myselves

It’s not always easy to confront…because in the end, I will have to confront myself. No matter how we want to war another human being for the sake of hate, it’s just being a reflection of something that we don’t want to see in ourselves.

Being brutally honest to myself is never an easy lesson. Silence is not a good remedy; it just increases self tension.

And so, warring physically is not the hardest war…it’s the struggle against self.

Until now, I still have to learn how to confront when needed…and face my own self when necessary.

 

Unifying Diversified Thoughts

To know both sides is a matter of humanistic fairness. We are all made in diversity and yet we try to be as fair as we should be, listening to every angle to know the truth behind. In my work as a journalist, I noticed how different government and civilians views are to one another. Besides that, in every sectors of society, different groups have emerged, taking up a stand for something…or someone.

It’s fortunate to be a free nation, giving a chance for every voice to be heard. I’ve been to different rallies, and I wonder how and where do they get their passion to fight for their cause and rally in the streets no matter how small their numbers can be.

The government in turn tries to appease every groups. But no matter how, not everyone can be appeased. The fight and the call will never end…until both sides will humble themselves and listen.

It’s not an evil thing to be passionate for a cause. It is the one thing that keeps us determined to fight for it. Without it, there’s no reason to live. Yet, one thing that society lacks is humility. I understand that if we lay down ourselves, unlearn the twisted views we have on one another, and listen, nothing can be solved and it will remain as a cycle in generations after generations.

No matter how the government tries to make the most systematic plans for the economy, no matter how loud every NGO’s cry for appeal, every action we make will just bounce on each other’s wall of pride. We expect the government to do everything we demand, the government in return maintains its auspiciousness despite of the transparency it magnifies. It takes two to tango. Without humility, we’ll be blinded by our suspicions until we grab the power handed to us.

But here’s the One thing that we’ve been missing in our society. Our trust in God. Ok, I don’t mean to sound religious here. The Philippines has been considered as the only Christian nation in Asia…but that does not mean we fully trust Him. We can say “In God we trust,” just like the first American government, but we can say without leaving our hearts to Him. Once we do, that is the sign of genuine humility. It’s like saying, “We’re partners in nation building, God.”

It is not an easy thing and to see this must take a lot. We have to be ready to lay down and unlearn our poisonous doctrines in order to push through for a revived society.

Sustaining My Passion

The media world is a harsh realm. Ever since I started covering in the senate, I felt a sense of strong competition among different media personnel compared to that in the palace. I am used to the teamwork in the palace press people and so I am appalled by the reality that the media world offers for the sake of popularity and ratings in the outside world.

And so I experienced a belittling of my own entity.

During the first days, I felt desperate. But I had no intention of complaining. Although it’s fun to be with the people in the same feathers called our team, going around looking for ambush interviews were a shock for me. But I had soon beginning to gain a few friends outside our team, mostly young reporters.

But the biggest test was my character check. And it is in here that refinement is beginning to take place.

Naturally, I’m a bit shy…and childish, in fact. I always smile, thanks to my happy-go-lucky character. But the world states that one has to be harsh to win the top. But I don’t intend to be overly popular on TV. I don’t intend to bag awards or win public approval. I am just doing my job. However, this world is trying to put you into compromise.

But only by God’s grace that I survive without seeking fame.

Focusing on the “glitter” of this world is nothing compared to yearning for the love of a God I’ve never seen physically. And yes, how I yearn for Him and want His fellowship. I’ve experienced sinking deep into His presence before but that is not enough. I want more of Him. Thinking that this world will just pull me away from His love, I decided to stay in the church. But that was not His plan.

Outside the church, majority of the world’s entities has no pastor or church worker to touch the unsaved. I remember how desperate I was when I went into “secular” work, but my mother would tell me that I have a reason being there…since no pastor can get in there, who can reach those who had not known the Lord?

I’m no preacher. And I’m not as “great” as Cindy Jacobs or Chuch Pierce and yet I am a part of His puzzle for His Kingdom. I believe the Lord is sending out His children into the remotest part of the urban jungle in order to be a voice to those who have not heard and be a living testimony of His love.

How should I sustain this? I need hunger and thirst. I need passion to lift His Name and embrace His love and give it away. It can never happen should His presence not stay with me and fill me more. I need You, God! And this world needs You!

Little by little or perhaps by one sudden move, the earth will be filled with the knowledge and the glory of Him. And yes, the senate, the palace and the whole nation will be a different place. More of you God…do not only sustain me with You presence…make me sink in You more!

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