“MARITAL SPIRIT” – Oct 28

Sharing this inspiring post on how we make God -honoring marriages.

A DEVOTED LIFE

“Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since, they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.”  1 Peter 3:7

When I accompany my wife on a clothes shopping trip, I have an abundance of time.  I seek out the bench or chair, tucked away in some corner to make husbands feel less self-conscious of their surroundings.  While my wife beats every sales rack for the elusive prey of reasonably fitting jeans, I watch people.

You can learn a lot about a person by watching how they treat people.

Particularly revealing is the interaction of couples.  The shock of high divorce rates will no longer be a surprise once you spend a little time in the mall.  I sit in my little observation corner, watch, and shake my head:

I have seen…

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My 1st Homeschool Parent Training

Recently my days are filled with catching up lessons for the first quarter of our homeschool (add to that, the recent Typhoons Labuyo and Maring that hit our country and a minor head injury of our youngest, 8yr-old Boj). With our home transfer, we were delayed for a good 3 weeks. Being a first-time homeschooling mom, I was panicky at first when the cut-off for the 1Q was announced a few days ago! I now realized I must have worn out my 7th and 3rd grader kids who expect mom to be kinder than their teachers when they were enrolled in regular school. Sigh… But that of course, was the other part of the story. Homeschool allowed them to have a “more” relaxed schedule – meaning – they can wake up as late as 9am( yes, their body clocks were timed differently the moment we transferred !), master a subject (like Math) or do experiments in a day, and swim and/or attend MAPE (Music, Arts ,PE ) and HELE (Home Economics and Livelihood Education) once a week. As we progress, I am also learning and so is my character being tested. One time I asked my husband, “Tell me again,why did we decide to homeschool our kids?” in exasperation. I felt short of knowledge and patience. Good thing that he reminded me not of the why’s but of what God can do as I entrust my limited skills and knowledge to Him. And of course, that ” You’re doing a great job, Mom!” always works!

Today, I attended my 1st Parent Training organized by our provider, ENLI Homeschool. To be surrounded with parents who homeschool their children for the past 3, 10 or 14 years, is AMAZING! I realized I was never alone in my struggles – from waking up the kids (yes, even at 8 or 9am!), completing the worksheets, planning lessons, and doing house chores and/or part-time work alongside, rising tempers, etc .. – everything I am going through are normal occurrences! The topic was as timely ” Development Goals for High School Students”. Goals that are backed with biblical truths and are useful not only for homeschooling parents. Let me share a few.

Our resource speaker , Ms. Catherine “Cathy” Borja, a homeschooling mom of 3 boys, outlined the Focus Points based on Luke 2:52 ( Developmental Model Verse):

” And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.”

Key words/ phrases are : Wisdom, Stature, in Favor with God, in Favor with Men

I. Wisdom

  • we teach them to be wise according to the Word of God – to make them more Christlike
  • Character – “heart change” over “behavior modification”
  • Life skills – stewardship, house chores , safety & first aid, driving/ commuting
  • Academics and Arts  – excellence vs. mediocrity , appreciation of God’s creation, discover / develop God-given skills and talents ( yes even at age 10 or 13)

II. Stature

  • Health and physical development  – regarding our bodies as temples of the Holy Spririt, not as our own . ; engage into sports, eat a balanced diet, routine check-ups ( I just learned that check-ups with the Pediatrician or Family Doctor is recommended until they reach 19yrs. old , and also a visit to an eye doctor is commendable, especially for homeschooled kids who are engaged with books on their own and are in a one-on-one setting most of the time), enough rest and sleep , discussion of addiction to vices/ excesses
  • personal hygiene
  • Biblical sex education – who are the first teachers? parents or school or media? who should be teaching them? what are the truths about it?  This includes explaining God’s purpose of sex, the sanctity of marriage, personal holiness ( being set apart from the world), purity in mind and body, vigilance in exposure to media, internet and other influences ( practical examples like not having FB accounts at a certain age, using the K9 web protection or allowing the children to use the computer/internet at a limited time and with monitors easily seen by parent or guardian ; not being hidden from us). “Innocence lost is lost forever.” Only by the grace of God can we all be redeemed, so do our children.

III. In Favor with God

  • Intentional Discipleship – we are the first teachers. we do not delegate discipleship of our children to the youth pastor!
  • making it a lifestyle/an attitude of worship 
  • leading by example – example in the matter of obedience vs. willfulness, even as adults we still at times wrestle with God in obeying His will for us. Or in the area of forgiveness, as parents, we can model to our children how we are able to handle conflicts and resolutions in our family or relationships

IV. In Favor with Men

Why (gain the favor with men)?

  • to point everything back to God. Our children’s glorious moments are for God’s glory. They will shine bright so that others will see and glorify our Father in heaven. ( I will elaborate on this in a future post).
  • to have an entry point for the Gospel! The good news is ought to be shared! When our children are “puffed up” with all the praises in the world, it is our responsibility as parents to “bring them back to earth” and to let them acknowledge that God is behind all the big production and glory

How (to gain favor with men)?

  • build/ value personal relationships
  • understand other cultures/ ethnicity – maybe expose them to travels even in our own country
  • practice good manners & proper etiquette – example, if the budget allows, bring them to fancy restaurants where they can dress up and behave properly.

Other Practical Points:

  • start exploring / discussing undergraduate courses
  • take exams that will show  strengths & aptitude
  • find out requirements of Colleges / Universities (scholarships, etc.)
  • proper documentation of files , report cards, transcripts , for easy reference

In the end, I am reminded with the following truths:

1. Our children are not ours, they are the Lord’s.

2. Our children are a gift, a reward, blessing. They are never a curse nor a burden!

3. Our standard for success is by feeding our children (and us!) with the Word of God.

“Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” – Joshua 1:8

True enough, I went home refreshed, inspired and empowered.
I thank the Lord for this beautiful Tuesday!

Nesting – 10th Edition

Finally, we are at home in our new, temporary place. After 10 house transfers in a span of 13 yrs of being married and growing a family, I thank God for the grace and the extraordinary ability to “nest”. I looked back at my previous post on Nesting and I know God’s not done with me yet – with my family. He is always at work in our lives and He continues to bring us to places where we are made useful for His work. My prayer is that in all things, and with every move,  may His name alone be glorified.

Amazingly, when God tells us to do something (case in point: our move)  He doesn’t leave a single detail behind. Reading the book of Ezekiel at the moment, I am in awe with the intricacy of details that God has shown this man on how the temple would be restored -from the floors to the ceilings, doors, gates and the utensils! Women love details, so you must’ve an idea how I was drawn to it. 🙂 But more than being a woman, I know God is speaking to me that He’s doing the same to us. When we decided to relocate, God didn’t leave a single, tiny detail behind. The kids’ education, my new “assignment”, our temporary home, our mobility, provision, even the ones that seemed trivial like the decors (would it fit my “Asian theme” ?) , kitchenware , double beds for the kids and more  – all of these were granted as I have specifically prayed for! We earned them not because of US but because He is God. He owns everything and He gives what He knows are best for us. If he hasn’t provided for those, I know now (after so many times of not being able to get what I thought I needed) that He withholds some things for a purpose, for our own good and protection. I am not only talking about material needs, but even of our health, or work or business. Yes, He gives us the freedom to do our own thing, but I always remember that all things may be permissible but not all are beneficial (1 Corinthians 10:23).  He may say yes, not for you, or  not now – just wait.  And yes not just wait , but to ‘patiently’ wait!

So for now, I just think of the other end of this rainbow that we have seen that week when we moved out of our ‘other’ home…

after an afternoon rain in the village where we used to live..

after an afternoon rain in the village where we used to live..

and wake up to mornings like this..

bright mornings in our new home :-)

bright mornings in our new home 🙂

 

Wherever the “nest” is, the good Lord provides. As we are surrounded by trees, I see birds around and I remember this,

”  Look at the birds in the sky! They don’t plant or harvest. They don’t even store grain in barns. Yet your Father in heaven takes care of them. Aren’t you worth more than birds? ”

– Matthew 6:26

I am grateful.. I am at peace.

 

 

An Afternoon Delight

Sometimes we get wind up with the daily humdrum of things – waking up , managing the household, off to day job, back to home sweet home. Not that I am complaining, I am indeed thankful that my hands are full. In these times, i get to meet different lives with different personalities. My facetime with these people are much more appreciated! Social media has allowed us to be connected to a lot of people in a seemingly unimaginable way ( like how my blog has brought me to you! ) but it doesn’t give us the “soulful” connection that can only be achieved in real face-to-face conversations, a gentle touch, a shoulder to cry on and a merry hymn of laughter that can fill an otherwise boring, empty room!

Recently, I get to bond with my cousins whom I shared the most wonderful childhood moments with. Times when technology was still a luxury, memories were built “intentionally” – like when you schedule a vacation, it has to be carefully planned as there was not yet a travel agency that takes care of your logistical needs, no cellphones and internet that allow you to say “hey, i got stuck in the traffic – will just follow you there” , so that makes you to be there on time, on the dot, lest you will be left behind. Like those times, this reunion was intentional. And I think, we always have to be intentional with our relationships. Intentional in deciding that we meet, in letting people know that we care for each other because we care enough to see them. And dish away that idea that we are just a text or phone call away. (Of course, if  distance is a hindrance, the calls, emails and sms pretty much make up for it!)

Reunions need not be grand.  That day, it was just coffee, them, and I (and yes, with a muffin and lemon square in between!).  Take time out to nurture those relationships. Not a moment is wasted.

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Me and my cousins enjoying an afternoon coffee! (thanks, Cookie ,for this pic!)

2013: The Year of the Lord’s Favor!

Just woke up from a wonderful sleep to a bright sunshiny December 31st morning.  Spending my quiet time with the Lord brought me to read some of the pages from this year’s journals ( surprisingly,  I have 3! Wrote so many love letters to God 🙂  and realized that although my 2012 has been marked with many challenges – in my health and the business  – God has blessed me with so many immeasurable things – to enjoy the season of truly just being married , a family reunion and a getaway, the company of true friends and seeing people grow in their faith and walk with the Lord starting from our children! What a tremendous blessing!  2012 is a year that has kept me always on my knees, in tears of joy and desperation.  And I believe, this is a great gift from the Lord, to be able to go to him, any time and emotion of the day because we have a personal relationship with Him.  I remember what I wrote last year as I welcome 2012  – “..it is my prayer that we “Always be JOYFUL. Keep on PRAYING. No matter what happens, always be THANKFUL, for this is God’s will for you (and me ) who belong to Christ Jesus! “ (1Thess 5:16-18).  Indeed, there were times that I couldn’t rejoice with what God has allowed to happen, but I chose to rejoice and be thankful for WHO HE is.

 

In a few moments, we will welcome another year, the 2013th AD, or translated as “In the Year of the Lord, 2013”.  Why, these great scholars wisely marked such years! The knowledge of the Messiah, Jesus Christ,  who has come some 2000 yrs ago who died for me to save me from eternal wrath so I may live with Him in eternity is the single, greatest reason why I rejoice and anticipate a brand new year knowing that He will be with me, to fight and win the battles for me and my family, to constantly guide me, and to allow me to be a channel of blessing to His people. He will also be the same for you for it is written “ But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the mighty power of God and the wonderful wisdom of God” (1Corinthians1:24)!

 

May 2013 be filled with a joyful expectation of things to come. A year when we grow in our faith – trusting God more in the little and big things – in EVERYTHING! When Isaiah talked about the coming Messiah in Isaiah 61, it is true that each year, is the “Year of the Lord’s Favor”! We experience victories, we go through mountains and bumps in our spiritual highways, we share each other’s burdens, we are able to comfort and refresh others… what a great favor, indeed!

 

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Let’s celebrate His goodness and faithfulness in our lives. We declare that 2013 is a Year of the Lord’s Favor!

 

“I am overwhelmed with joy in the Lord my God!     For he has dressed me with the clothing of salvation     and draped me in a robe of righteousness. I am like a bridegroom in his wedding suit     or a bride with her jewels. The Sovereign Lord will show his justice to the nations of the world.     Everyone will praise him!His righteousness will be like a garden in early spring,     with plants springing up everywhere.” – Isaiah 61:10-11(NLT)

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photocredit: formsofletter.blogspot.com

Women’s Day 2011

Cheers to the women around the world!

Today, we celebrate the International Women’s Day Centenary. How far have we come? We are grateful that a lot of organizations continually look after our welfare , one such is the United Nations . The UN’s official theme is “Equal access to education, training and science and technology: Pathway to decent work for women”.. A hundred years speaks roughly of 2 generations ( with 40 yrs approximately for each generation) . Personally,  coming from a bloodline of strong women ( both in will and body! both of my grandmas are still alive at 84 and 92!) , I can say that we have come a long way.  And while we savor our freedom in this side of the world, a lot still do not have access to education and basic health services in some parts the globe.

This is my prayer – that we realize our fullest potential , as a woman – who celebrates her uniqueness as a beautiful creation of  the  Supreme One , as a wife – who completes her partner, as a mother – who nurtures her children, physically and spiritually,as a child – who is a great source of joy , as a worker – one approved by her Maker and not by people and as  God’s precious daughter – a co -heir to a kingdom that lasts forever. ..

Celebrate the purple fever!
“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.” -Proverbs 31:30

 

Life in Circle

Hi! welcome to my site! as if a shape, i love to view life as a circle. Seasons come and go,  so are people, things, places, and what have yous… Every moment counts so I promise to cherish every moment of my life as it comes in full circle. Enjoy, celebrate life! Live and love!