Saturday, May 25, 2013

SUPERBOOK IS BACK!


They were trapped, with  nowhere to go. With their pursuers immediately behind them and the sea in front of them, they faced death!
 
Refugees from a war-torn country like Syria? Escapees from an African nation wracked by violence and famine?

Pretty similar. But these were the Jews during Moses time. Almost cornered by Pharaoh's chariot-riding army, they didn't know where to turn. Then a miracle! The sea parted, making way for them to walk through dry ground as the waters continued to rage but as an enormous wall on both sides of them.

This is Superbook, returning with  bang. And just like any Hollywood or Disney animation movie, this particular episode was just as compelling. A page of history retold with the magic of animation. 

And that was just a sampler, viewed by a theatre-full of kids and moms and dads looking forward to the first airing of this relived, reinvented and reimagined series.

Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) starts airing Superbook every Saturday (starting June 1), 7:30am, on GMA 7; with Superbook Classic episodes shown Sundays (starting June 2), also at 7:30am on the same channel.

My children grew up being entertained in the eighties by Superbook---with its lovable trio Gizmo, Chris and Joy always travelling back in time and tumbling into scenes peopled by biblical characters.

Well, they're here to stay, backed by excellent imagineering technology.

But more than its entertainment value, Superbook the bible series teaches kids godly values like faith, love, joy, kindness, patience, perseverance, faithfulness; most of all, the greatness, awesomeness, lovingkindness, mercy and grace of our God as revealed in the Good Book.

Watch it with your kids. I love Kung Fu Panda and all those Hollywood and Disney animation movies. 

I guarantee you, Superbook will give you thrice the thrill and even blow your heart away. And your kids will surely learn heaps of life lessons from it while they get entertained and set aside their computer games for a while.

Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it, Proverbs 22:6.







Monday, May 20, 2013

PRAYING MOTHERS

I don't know how Nanay and Tatay did it but during their time, you were an oddity if all you managed to have were one or two kids.  

My mother gave birth to eight children and İ could not remember her taking a leave off from work--- yet she did it all. 

İt helped of course that my elder siblings had been trained to mind the little ones, but I remember that even if Nanay was out making a living, Lola Felipa guarded us like a hawk---though my brother Dan and naughtiest sister Malu still managed to sneak out with their barkadas to either climb trees or frolic in the river. 

Well, all six girls and two brothers soon left town, studied in Manila, then had their own families---24 grandkids plus 24 great grandchildren multiplying Nanay's joy. 

İ still wonder how she did it, because when my turn came, i found motherhood a test of grit, patience and determination. Nanay was not a woman of many words but her modelling stuck with me, even if I rebelled sometimes. When my husband Jack and I had our kids, İ found myself doing exactly the same things she did.  

The scripture is so true! "Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it." (Proverbs 22:6) How Nanay must have prayed! 

That's the very same secret place I discovered whenever I found myself helpless about our children's situations. And this mother's heart has enlarged some. Oh yes, I will always have a special place for our children and their spouses. But the bigger room has already been taken by the little ones! 

Just the thought of our grandkids sends joyful jolts to this grandmother's heart. Their presence alone can light up a dimly-lit room. 

Kind of makes me imagine our Father's heart. He loves kids, or those who are kids at heart---those who come to Him with a confidence that He will embrace and love them unconditionally, no matter what they've done. 

Jesus said, "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) 

Even if I'm officially a senior citizen and a mother twice over, I can come to Jesus---wrinkles, brokenness, inabilities, failures and all---and be assured that He will answer and grant my heart's desires. 

This mother desires only this: That my children and their children as well as those who will be born after them will honor the Lord with their lives and their substance all the days of their blessed lives. 

(Earlier published at CBNAsia.com)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A WELL OF A HEART


When God created man, He must have spent more time on the woman's heart, stretching it, making it as deep as a well for the heart-arresting issues she would need to contend with later. 

The yawning gap between a man and a  woman becomes really apparent when she becomes a mother.

A mother has a capacity to endure sleepless nights, to nurse, cuddle and burp her newborn baby even through colicky or feverish episodes. Add to that her matter-of-fact attitude when it comes to changing stinky diapers---while the fathers gag at even the prospect of it. 

She has the patience to discipline and coach, to continue teaching and guiding, even if her child is as stubborn  as a mule or unresponsive as a brick. 

And how she prays! Storming heaven's gates like her child were the only person in the whole wide world worthy of God's attention. Her persistence and faith, met with God's grace, are a potent combination.

Add to these the need to attend to day-to-day chores like cooking, cleaning the house, doing the laundry, gardening. Frankly, many moms fail to perform many of these nowadays, especially when most of them have careers outside the home. But mothers nonetheless definitely find ways to get things done, keeping their households orderly with a little help from kasambahays.  

And in rural and economically-depressed areas, one could see mothers carrying pails of water fetched from wells or rivers where they do their laundry. They plant rice or weed their husband's or neighbors'  farms. They cook viands and kakanins and sell them house to house.

Proverbs 31 says that a woman of noble character is worth far more than rubies and that a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. 

Because women have their greater share of emotion than men, they hurt more when their kids take forbidden ways---like when a daughter gets pregnant in her teens or out of wedlock, or when a son gets  trapped in drugs, violence, pornography or gambling. Or when these kids fail in school!

But imagine too a mother's boundless joy when she sees her children following Jesus and reaping blessings as they do.

"Give her the reward she has earned; and let her works bring her praise at the city gates," says Proverbs 31:31.

Oh Jesus, İ pray that your hand would be upon mothers. Whatever they're going through, reach out to them. Comfort, strengthen and surround them with your love, joy and peace. Bring back their children who have taken dangerous paths. Call them in to their mothers and fathers. Remind them of your grace to accept and love them unconditionally. 

Likewise, Lord, bring home those women, who through no fault of their own, or because of wrong choices, have been away from their husbands and children. Restore families. Repair and mend broken relationships.  Give parents and children brand new hearts to start anew in Jesus Christ. Amen!

Photo credits: smashingmagazine.com, feronia.com, bandagedear.com