Saturday, December 3, 2016


Image result for south pole
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It feels a lot like Christmas, doesn't it?

Well, it's not just about the increased foot traffic in malls, especially because many have already received their 13th month pay.

But the air is cooler, more pleasant and more conducive to wearing more layers of clothing. Rejoice my fashionista friends!

Our weathermen credit Arctic (North pole) winds for our cool breeze, which hopefully lingers.

How utterly different the Arctic and the Antarctic (South) poles are. The North Pole, it seems is kinder to humans (Remember Sarah Palin, the most popular Alaska resident?) with its minus 34 degree celsius temperature; versus the Antarctic's minus 49 degrees.

The South pole is simply uninhabitable, except by penguins, and humans who visit during summer for weather tracking.

Guess what, polar bears live only in the North, according to, which reports that the lowest temperature ever recorded on earth was minus 89 degrees celsius, at the Vostok Base, near the geomagnetic South.                                                            

I wonder if "bipolar" has its roots from the North-South pole juxtaposition: the earth's opposite hemispheres looking seemingly similar (for their icy nature), yet very dissimilar.

Recent news have reported of popular bipolar personalities. 

The term describes someone with manic depressive tendencies characterized by serious and significant mood swings or alternating highs and lows, per John M. Grohol, Psy.D,

Would some of us be diagnosed as bipolar too in our faith-walk?

Our faith goes on high-mode when we read about God's promises; yet this same faith gets deflated, as if infected by dementia, when confronted by disappointments.

"Such a person is double-minded and unstable…" James 1:8. "When we ask, we must ask in faith, without doubting, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind." (James 1:6-7)

I've at many times been a bipolar Christian. When I was new in my faith, I learned to pray, and pray earnestly. Yet, when the answers came, I dismissed them as pure coincidence. Double-faced na, bipolar pa!

I recently prayed with a young couple for a house of their own. Could God be waiting for them to step out in faith (in spite of their parents' objections), since it is His perfect will for man and woman to cleave as one and be separate from their parents' household?

Jonah, perfect example of a bipolar believer: Called by God to preach repentance to the Ninevites, he instead ran away because, in his heart of hearts, he wanted Nineveh destroyed. Yet, Jonah was God's prophet!

Allowing our more carnal selves get the better of us that's when we become bipolar believers.

Only by His grace and His Holy Spirit can we obey. So we need to rely daily on Jesus for our strength.  That's why 1Peter 1:10 encourages us to "make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble."

Want to be rid of bipolar faith? Let the mind of Christ inhabit yours.

Monday, October 24, 2016


Quotients. You either love or hate them.

We idolize Einstein types for their superb intelligent quotient or IQ, and swoon over people with  exceptional emotional intelligence (EQ).

Admirable too if you've got these CQ's: change quotient (ability to manage change), or creative quotient for giftedness in the arts.
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Two CQ's though are better thrown in the trash bin.

Forgive me, Jesus, I've lately been afflicted with these CQ's. 

I thought they'd easily pass away like the common cold, but theycomplaint quotient and criticism quotient persisted.

I'm not sure exactly when  they started bugging me; but they must have encroached round about the recent presidential election. Facebook and television teemed with vitriol about which camp was lying or telling the truth. These viruses gained their foothold as I had FB for breakfast, watched network news, or chatted about them over coffee with like-minded friends.

This CQ infection has become a phenomenon. One FB friend termed it witchcraftbecause how could friends fight over something or someone they didn't even personally know?

Initially, I thought I could just be an observer, and just pray. But the bugs persisted, and my spiritual immune system snapped.

I had the best intention: share biblical insights about what's happeningbecause God's words can cause people to relent.

Hebrews 4:12  "For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart."

Afterall, troll-initiated lies and online bullying shouldn't be allowed to persist, right? That's what we should do as responsible citizens, right? And we should speak out as concerned and peace-loving people, right? 

Didn't God send Ezekiel  (34:1-8) to prophesy against the shepherds of Israel because they've "scattered the flock, and with force and severity dominated them?"

The problem though with engaging in word wars is: once in, you wouldn't know when to back out. Initially, you just want to share appropriate biblical truths to shed light on the country's situations, plus give your own little comment. I admit, some of my comments have been a bit tart. And those invited tart remarks too from others.

Tart for tart equals tartness (taray) glorified—not God.  The anatomy of word wars.  

We've seen relationships break as friends or family members defended or criticized our new president. This is unprecendented! Tama na!

So, I'm done criticizing, done complaining. Bugs eradicated.

I humbled myself before you and you gave me a firm place to stand. Thank you, Jesus!

Thanks to my husband and my friends who continue to remind me that everything is in God's hands. We needn't be afraid because He is still seated on the throne.

That doesn't mean though that I'll stop praying and sharing the Word. Jesus is the only hope of our nation. He promised: the government will be on His shoulder!

Thank you Lord for reminding us that whatever is happening in our country, could not be won through barbed words but through your Word and your Spiritbecause our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual powers and strongholds in the high places.  We bind these forces up, in Jesus' name! And lift up to You our president. That  he may acknowledge You as Savior and Lord; and obey you wholeheartedlyfor the glory of Your name. 

Monday, October 17, 2016


"The Scream" by Edvard Munch, 1893
Life sucks. Even my Pastor says so.

As a senior, I find myself staring at sickness more often. It's worse for those with cancer and other deadly diseases.

Treat people kindly; some fire back with venom.

We expect our new leader to inspire or at least be a role model; but what do we get? A buffet of curses every suppertime. Makes you wonder if the art of cursing, war-mongering and bullying should instead be taught in school in lieu of good manners and right conduct.

When you read about kids being abused or used by adults for their own ends, you drown in a sea of sadness, anger and guilt because you could not do much about it.

Jesus himself warned that life will never be a bed of roses. Earth is tribulation center! We're all in a problematic place. God has never hidden this truth from us:

Romans 5:12 "Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned…"

2 Cor. 4:4 "The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."

That's why Jesus came that in spite of our disappointments and struggles, and in spite of Satan continuously harassing us, our lives can be productive and purpose-driven.  

John 16:33 "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

If He has overcome, so can we. If Jesus is our Lord and Savior, He will teach us to:

·   Continue doing good

Plant goodness and your barn will be stacked with everything good. That's His promise! Galatians 6:9 "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up."
     Pray without ceasing, and in all circumstances

Especially for our loved ones even our enemies. Pray for your boss, for our president and other government leaders. God has given every believer the authority to pray, in Jesus' name, to bring down strongholds and demonic powers, especially in government and those who enslave others through any form of evil.  

Jesus changes lives. He even changes hearts no matter how deep they are in the pit of addiction, either to substances, lust, power or money.
     Help those in need

"The poor you will always have with you," Jesus says, Matthew 26:11. We can't do anything for poor people in Timbuktu, can't we? unless of course you're Warren Buffet or Henry Sy  but you can give to those who ask for help, or donate to  organizations which organize help for those who lack or need aid because of disasters. 

Operation Blessing, World Vision, and Metro World Child are trustworthy NGOs which channel your kindness to children and communities.

·   Experience His peace which passes all understanding

Peace is elusive apart from Him who saves us from eternal death and gives us abundant life. Isaiah 9:6a prophesied of Jesus:  "… He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." No wonder I can sleep soundly at night despite everyday concerns.

This verse also promised, "… the government will be on his shoulders." 

No matter how perplexed we are about what's happening around us, take heart, Jesus has our back.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


(Sharing my testimony, published in the Philippine Campus for Christ website)
"I am the master of my destiny.” Or so I thought. Until Cyd.
Earlier in my career, a former colleague called me to rejoin her in the company we both served.
“I’m happy where I am now,” I told her — sure that I was beyond convincing. In our back-and-forth, she offered me a salary I could not resist; so I went back to this former employer — convinced that I was smokin’ hot.
Never did I realize that God was brewing His own recipe, not buttering my ego.
It was in this company where I met the former Cyd Latunio, a Corporate Planning analyst.
Our offices were neighbors, so Cyd and I managed to chat between work. To my surprise, I felt at ease around her, even if I was initially intimidated by her — she seemed really smart.
Yet there was something about her. Cyd was friendly and easily laughed at the slightest provocation. Yet she never told off-color jokes, nor spoke ill of others.
“I want whatever she has,” I thought. It felt good to be around her. In contrast, I complained a lot and easily found fault in others — that was low-self-esteemed-me masquerading as intolerant-high-and-mighty-me.
It did not take long for me to discover that Cyd was a believer, and with the Campus Crusade for Christ. The more she spoke about Jesus, the more I gravitated to her.
But it was not just her words. She demonstrated Jesus.
Cyd invited me one day to a balikbayan’s gospel concert in a hotel. I didn’t need convincing. At this point, she had me — hook, line and sinker.
Here I was plagued with insecurity, unforgiveness, resentment, bitterness and fear — one faced with tsunami-like issues; and I was drowning in them.
That night, a different sort of flood engulfed me: “God loves me, unconditionally!” I never knew that. “It’s by faith and grace, not works.” “Repent.” “Confess Jesus as your Savior and Lord.” Who could refuse that? I asked Jesus into my heart.
That night I slept like a baby, for the first time in many years. So this was what being born again meant.
Change? Too many to mention here. Miracles? Likewise. My story is not finished yet. All my days are in Jesus’ hands.
Cyd may may have gone to heaven ahead of us (She succumbed to kidney failure sometime after she married and bore her son.); but many of those she discipled still bear her light.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

WORD WAR JUAN (Pilipino)

"Salita! Salita! Salita! Araw-araw salita; mula sa kanya, ngayon sa 'yo! Yan lang ba ang magagawa nyong mga perwisyo?"

'Yan ang isina-tagalog na awit ni Eliza, ginanap ng paborito kong aktres na si Audrey Hepburn, sa Broadway movie musical na "My Fair Lady."

Ganyan din bang sick-and-tired na pakiramdam ang nadarama mo pag nagbubukas ka ng Facebook? Maaasim na salita na parang tsunami ang dating. Minsan gusto mo na lang i-X ang mga ganyang post para makapagkape ka nang mahinahon.

Pero bakit nga Juan versus Juan ang mga pananalita natin? Baha na ang internet ng  tone-toneladang pagmumura at salitang galit. Tuloy, marami nang nag-unfriend ng mga kaibigan nila sa Facebook. May mga tuluyan nang nagsarado ng FB accounts nila.

Hindi na ba talaga pwedeng mag-komento ang isang tao hinggil sa state of affairs ng bansa natin, o tungkol sa hindi magandang asal ng mga opisyal? Bakit aatakihin ka ng iba dahil dito? At bakit kailangang ipagtanggol ang isang masamang nagawa? 

Bakit kailangang sirain ang isang komento hinggil dito?
At bakit kailangang mang-alipusta o magmura? Sa totoo lang, parehong panigpro o con manay  guilty.

Subalit ito ang tunay na nakakainis: ang pagbaha ng sangkatutak na kasinungalingan, gawa ng mga tinatawag na trolls. Misyon ng mga trolls na palabuin ang katotohanan. Sa sama nang pagkakasulat ng mga inimbento nilang balita, kung iintindihin mo, madidiskubre mong ang mga ito ay kasinungalingan.  

Ito ang isa sa mga itinuro sa atin sa eskwela: na sa isang demokrasyang bansa, kung maglalahad ka ng opinyon, hindi ka dapat matakot na may pumula sa 'yo.

Sa kasalukuyan, napaka-hati ng ating bayan. Masyado tayong natali sa pagka-kanya-kanya o pagka-kampo-kampo, na hindi na bukas ang utak natin sa ibang pananaw. Walang turuan! 

Lahat tayo'y naging mapanghusga at  makitid ang isipan.

Bakit hindi na lang natin tingnan ang mga situwasyon ayon sa pananaw ng Panginoon?

Lahat tayo ay nagkasala, walang matuwid, Romans 3:23! Kaya walang makapagsasabing may isang taong puro tama ang gawa; kaya hindi dapat ipagtanggol kung ang isang tao ay mali na ang ginagawalalo kung ito'y malinaw na mali. Kahit pa siya ang presidente!

Kahanga-hanga ang president natin. Mahal niya ang bayan natin at hangad niyang mapabuti ang buhay ng mahihirap. Dapat tularan ang marubdob niyang pagnanasa na ibuwal ang lawless elements. Subalit walang isa manpresidente man siya o pulisang makapaghuhusga sa isang nagkamali maliban sa proseso ng due process at ng batas.

Hustisya at rule of law ang dapat masunod. Kung hindi, maraming inosente ang madadawit. Concern ito ng mga human rights groups. Subalit mas dapat tayong mabahala sa sinasabi ng Panginoon.

Makapangyarihan ang mga salita. Nagsalita ang Diyos at nalalang ang lahat. Kaya sabi ng biblia, "Ang buhay at kamatayan ay nasa pwersa ng dila," Proverbs 18:21. Ang mga salita ay nakaka-buhay o nakakasira.

Kaya bilang mananampalataya, hindi ako matahimik pag naririnig ko ang president natin na nagmumura, o nagsasalita nang pabalang at walang respeto sa iba. Napapanood natin siya araw-araw sa primetime TV. Pinapakinggan siya ng kabataan. Buong mundo ay nanonood!

Natutuhan ko sa paaralan na importate ang respeto para magtagumpay sa buhay. Ako ay isang guro, at halos araw-araw, ipinapaalala ko sa aking mga estudyante, "Maging magalang kayo," lalo na kung may nakikita akong nang-bu-bully.

Kaya umaasa din ako na maging magalang din ang ating president. Dapat makita ito ng mga kabataan sa kanya; kasi kung hindi, bakit pa natin ituturo ito? At saka, ang paggalang ay umaani rin ng paggalang ng iba. Kung ano ang itinanim, ito rin ang aanihin.

Gusto nating irespeto ng lahat hindi lang ang ating president kundi lahat ng Pilipino na nagsisikap  magtagumpay, nasa Manila, New York o Singapore man siya.

Ayaw nating umalis ang mga investors dito sa Pilipinas. Masyado silang nababahala pag ang lider ng bansang kinaroroonan nila ay astang champion ng "you and me against the world" na kaisipan.

Kasama tayo sa family of nations kaya kailangan nating matutong makipag-isa sa ibang bansa.    

"Sinumang na-ko-kontrol ng salita niya ay marunong, at siya na may mapagtimping ugali ay nakakaintindi," Proverbs 17:27.

Ephesians 4:29Huwag bayaang lumabas sa inyong mga bibig ang corrupt na salita, kundi yun lamang mabuti para sa ikatataas ng iba, ayon sa okasyon, upang ito ay magbigay-grasya sa mga nakikinig.

Patuloy nating ipagdasalhindi lamang para malaya tayong makapaglahad ng opinyon, kundi upang tayong mga Pilipino ay hindi makaramdam ng takot pag tayo'y nagsalita. Mas malaking dalangin natin: na hindi ipagbunyi sa bansang ito ang mali, at magsaya tayo sa mga tamang gawa.

Pilipino ako, taas-noong Pilipino. At patuloy kong ipagdarasal ang ating presidente at bansa.  


"Words! Words! Words! I get words all day through; first from him, now from you! Is that all you blighters can do?"

Eliza, the character played by my favorite Hollywood actress, Audrey Hepburn, blurts out this line in the Broadway movie version of the musical "My Fair Lady."

Don't you get that same sick-and-tired feeling every time you click on Facebook nowadays? Acrid words inundate you like a tsunami. Your only recourse sometimes is to just X the barb-wired post so you can still sip your morning coffee in bliss.

But why this Juan versus Juan war of words?  Tons of angry and stinging words have flooded the net that some have decided to totally retire from FB or unfriend their friends.

Why can't one comment on our country's state of affairs, or the unacceptable behavior of our public officials, without readers plaguing you with nasty remarks? Why justify a wrong done? Why bash one's valid comments?

And why resort to name-calling? Why rant? Yes, both pros and cons have done this!

But what's so irritating is the prevalence and endless shares of lies, propagated by so-called trollsthose whose calling is to muddle the truth. Their made-up news are oftentimes so poorly crafted, the discerning realizes soon enough they're just that: lies!

I learned in school that the real essence of democracy is the freedom to speak without fear of reprisals, or people ganging up on you for your dissenting opinions.

Today, we are a country so divided because we've taken sides, become hardliners, and thus failed to judge situations and people objectively. I'm not pointing fingers. We've all fallen into the rut of being judgmental, narrow-minded and subjective.

How about we judge situations from God's perspective?

We're all sinners (Romans 3:23), and can't therefore justify that any one person's acts are ALL right, or one is beyond reproach, especially when some of his wrong actions are so blatant.

That holds true for our current president. I love his devotion to our country and people and his concern for the poor. I admire his passion for ridding the country of lawlessness. But no oneand this applies not only to him but also the police and all who need to impose the rulescan take the law in his own hands!

Justice and due process must prevail, precisely because the innocent must not suffer along with the lawless! Human rights groups have voiced their concerns. But we should care more about what God says!

Words are powerful. God spoke and His creations came into being. That's why the bible says that death and life are in the power of the tongue, Proverbs 18:21. Words can either build or wreck lives.

And that's why as a believer, I could not just sit down and approve of my president's cursing and disrespect for other's opinions. Audiences are glued on him every time he speaks on primetime TV. Children are listening. The entire world is watching.

I've learned too in school that one needs to be respectful to advance in life. As a teacher, I constantly remind my students to show respect, especially when I sense a bullying transpiring.

So I expect my own president to be respectful. Our young people must see that in our leaders, otherwise, why teach it? Also, because respect begets respect. What one sows is what he reaps!

We want that same respect accorded not just on the highest official of our land, but on every Filipino, whether he's in Manila, New York or in Singapore.

We don't want investors scrambling out of our country. They're just too jittery when a host country's leaders pose as a "you and me against the world" champion. We belong to a family of nations, looking out for each other, to a certain extent. There's a lot to gain by living peacefully with others, don't you think?  

"Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding," Proverbs 17:27.

Ephesians 4:29Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

This teacher prays, not so much for freedom of speech to prosper, but for all Filipinos to not feel threatened when they speak out; more, that we not tolerate what's evil, and applaud the good.

I am a Filipino and proud to be one. And I will continue to pray for my president and my country. 

Monday, August 29, 2016


"What's our bible study today?" asks Jayden.

"'Living Worthy of the Lord,' Colossians 1:9-14," I reply. Then he flips open his bible, looking for Colossians. 

Unable to find it, he comes to me for help. Whew, found it!  You see, prior, Jayden was already singing an acronym to make it easy for him to search for books in the new testament. 

He could have found it, but Colossians is such a tiny book in between Philippians and 1Thesallonians; and how many times have I too missed it! 

So on to our bible study—something his Mamita Vivian and I agreed to hold once a week for their household. In between our discussions, Jayden politely raised his hand several times to ask questions.   

"What is wisdom?" His last. 

"Remember Solomon..." I started to explain.

"Oh, yes, I remember. That's in Ecclesiastes. 

Jayden must be referring to: “Look, I have increased in wisdom more than anyone who has ruled over Jerusalem before me; I have experienced much of wisdom and knowledge.” (Ecclesiastes 1:16)

Why this blogpost on Jayden? 

Jayden is seven years old! 

I've a few times bantered with Jayden when he was younger; and boy, did he impress me with his quick repartees and little gentlemanly manners. He could even do mean mental maths! 

No wonder His parents Alfie and Ella always sport that proud-of-my-little-boy look. (Congrats, you've raised Jayden well.)

And in this recent bible study, he was my most attentive and engaged listener. I saw it in the eureka! glint in his eyes—revelations his young mind and heart have beheld as God's special instructions for him. 

He even took notes, under the heading, "Speaker: Lola Yay."

But this totally floored me: "I can't wait for the next bible study," he intimated before I left. 

What can I say? 

"Praise God for Jayden!" was all I could utter. "Could all church attendees be as focused on you, Lord?"

With my heart rocking to "How Great is our God," I headed back home, these words of Jesus having sprung up fresh as morning dew:

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these," Matthew 19:14. 

I can't wait for our next bible study!