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Decision to change

Decision to change

“You are where you are because of your choices. There is nothing to gain by regretting things. Review your past decisions for lessons and make a new decision to change. Take Action Today.”

— Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne is a strength and conditioning coach from Toronto, Canada. He works closely with athletes and is a consultant for Rugby Canada.

Reference: http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/cb.htm

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“The longer you…

“The longer you have to wait for something, the more you will appreciate it when it finally arrives. The harder you have to fight for something, the more priceless it will become once you achieve it. And the more pain you have to endure on your journey, the sweeter the arrival at your destination. All good things are worth waiting for and worth fighting for.”

— Susan Gale

Beautiful people do not just happen

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” — Elizabeth Kubler Ross

Not my own strength but His

“We are not on this earth to accumulate victories, things, and experiences, but to be whittled and sandpapered until what’s left is who we truly are.”  

– Arianna Huffington

God allowed me to experience many, many things to appreciate how He works through my life. I know that despite the negative things that has happened to me a few days ago (losing phone, failing a quiz, hurtful comments), I anchored my strength in Him to keep going. If I just rely on my own strength, I know I will just go back to the pessimistic-and-easily-discouraged version of myself. But  God is so good, He disguises these sad moments to make me see how my family and my friends love me. I sometimes feel ashamed that I am not worthy of this amazing love, yet God’s love overflows. All I can do is stare in awe, and do my best to respond in His call to love others.

Today is one of those days when I felt so energized. Though I already know how God loves me, it is still different when you try to reflect back on those moments when you think you’ve exhausted all of yourself, when you were so much in pain, when you think you’re already a hopeless case, when all you want is to shut yourself from the world away from every living fiber. But God is so great, He surrounds me with a loving God, family, and friends and I find strength to face my fears and uncertainties all over again.

Five months before, my relationship with Him and my family and friends is not like this. Not at all. Before, I would rather keep things to myself or write it down on my journal. But God showed me that why not open up to people and see how they can make me see the world beautifully. Why not allow Him to take control of my life again? I’m glad I did.

Fast forward to the present, God never stops moving mountains and oceans right before my own eyes. I know that the remaining journey is long, winding, and difficult. There will be storms to chase and dreams to fulfill. My bucket list never stops growing. But after talking to some of my closest friends today, I know that God’s plans in my life will bring me beyond my own dreams. He will turn them into a beautiful reality. All I need is to continue to draw strength, trust, and inspiration from Him.  To choose Him even when the world doesn’t.

As the year 2012 draws near to it’s end, I am getting clearer picture of what God’s plan has intended for me. This year has been a year filled with discernment. This year I felt I was at my lowest point, but  it is the same moment that my vulnerability opened me to the biggest changes in my life. This year God showed me how important it is to invest in people and earn life’s greatest rewards in return. This year I had to deal with tragic losses, but gained significantly in y relationship with Him and with my loved ones.

With a brave heart, I know I can be bigger than my own fears for the years ahead because I have a great God with me.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This is one of my favorite worship songs at the moment. Thank you Lord, for using people’s talents to inspire me as well.

How He Loves Us

He is jealous for me
Love’s like a hurricane,
I am a tree
Bending beneath the weight of
His wind and mercy
When all of a sudden, I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory
and I realize just how beautiful You are and how great your affections are for me.

Oh, how He loves us so
Oh, how He loves us
How He loves us so.
(x2)

Yeah, He loves us
Oh, how He loves us
Oh, how He loves us
Oh, how He loves.
(x2)

We are His portion and
He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption
by the grace in His eyes
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking
So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss and my heart turns
violently inside of my chest
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets when I think about the way

He loves us,
Oh, how He loves us
Oh, how He loves us
OH, how He loves
(x2)

Yeah, He loves us
Oh, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves.

Yeah, He loves us
He loves us
He loves us
He loves.

Yeah, He loves us
Whoa, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves

He loves us,
Whoa, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves us
Whoa, how He loves

 

Much bigger and stronger than any storm…

Image

“Every storm, no matter how big and strong, passes eventually.
Just know and remember that your spirit is much bigger and
stronger than any storm that comes your way, and that all
storms will fall apart long before you ever would.”

— Doe Zantamata

 

Image credits: http://favim.com/orig/201106/08/girl-poland-red-storm-summer-umbrella-Favim.com-68475.jpg

Promise Yourself

Promise Yourself

by Christian D Larson

To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.

To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.

To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.

To think only of the best, to work only for the best and to expect only the best.

To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.

To wear a cheerful expression at all times and give a smile to every living creature you meet.

To give so much time to improving yourself that you have no time to criticize others.

To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud word, but in great deeds.

To live in the faith that the whole world is on your side, so long as you are true to the best that is in you.

Musings over train ride: A child’s smile and a gesture of hope

A heavy downpour, suspension of classes, and a train ride on the way home made this day the most amazing day of October. I took the usual route every day for the past five years of college life, but today, seeing him with his father changed the way I see my train rides. The father was carrying his son inside a pram, and looking at the son, my heart broke a little because he was diagnosed with epilepsy. I decided to take the seat next to them, and for everything that happened in between, I am grateful for it.

The passengers kept giving the father and son furtive glances, as if not knowing on how to express sympathy for the sick child. I was one of them. The father, probably used to the sometimes hurting stares, just kept quiet and continued to attend to his son’s needs. As I am the one sitting closest to them, I realize how loving the father was, for taking care of his son, for looking at him with love in his eyes.

When his son was finished with the milk, the father gently patted his son’s back so he can burp and breathe easier. At that moment, I looked at the child, and he flashed me with his wide and toothy grin. I could not help but return that smile. He is happy, that’s all I know. His radiating smile changed the gloom inside the train and made his father beamed back at him. How could not anyone love this sweet and innocent child? His father took out an almost-empty medicine bottle, and then I really felt sorry because there are probably quite a few pills left for his son.

Silently in my head, I was praying that the weather be more friendly because it seems like the father and the son still had a long way to go. I was hoping I brought food with me to share or I had extra money at that time to give, but all I did was mutter a short prayer for them.

A few more stations later, a lady–dressed simply in white shirt and jeans–sitting across the father suddenly took out her wallet and drew PhP 500 cash to give to him. God bless her, she did not say anything else but this: “Sir, kunin mo na ‘to. (Sir, take this.)” The two young girls who were beside the lady and were busy laughing at their own conversation suddenly became quiet. It is almost as if time froze and all passengers were touched by the lady’s simple gesture of help. The father humbly accepted the money, “Salamat po, salamat. (Thank you, thank you).”

Initially, I thought this lady was one of those passengers who would just give a couple of stares to the father and child. But out of her desire to help, she did not hesitate to extend the money for child’s medicines. The way she even handed the money is not “show off”. She wasn’t staring at the child out of pity, she was gazing at him of pure love.

At that point, my eyes were brimmed with tears of joy. Literally. I don’t want to embarrass myself, and it was a good timing too that an old lady came in so I can give her my seat. I stood up two stations ahead my stop and saw the elderly lady engaging the father in a conversation to wipe my tears away. I gave the kid one last glance and he just smiled back as I stepped out the train’s doors.

Today, I would like to honor all the fathers and mothers who would give up anything and everything for their children. Their unconditional love shows us that as children, we are also called to love others unconditionally. The lady who gave out her money could have spent her cash on something else. Instead, she selflessly shared a part of her own so that an innocent child may continue to live. Like her, we should use our blessings to become blessings for others.

The child’s face is always smiling and his eyes are windows of hope for everyone to see. He reminded me of how we, adults, see life as difficult, thus we tend to look at our situation in a negative perspective. Yes life is not easy, but it should not stop us from approaching it with a smile. His story gives me hope, and I am glad that today, God granted me the opportunity to sit beside him and his father. Sometimes, even if we have lived here on earth for so long, a child can teach us more than what other people can’t.  Indeed, a smile warms the heart and soul. Thank you dear child for reminding me that even in the most difficult situations, we can still smile with life.