Monday, December 26, 2011

The Twelve DaysPounds of Christmas

It's the day after Christmas. Whew. The holiday rush has gotten to me real bad, I almost thought I'd end up as replacement to The Christmas Grouch. A long list of must-buys, almost-daily parties, and the slow crawl of traffic everywhere can make one's energy just fly right out of the window.

Fortunately, the tiring holiday season is almost over. Just a few more get-togethers to go to, and I can welcome long hours of sleep again. Yey!

So, out of habit, I hop on my trusty weighing scale. I haven't gotten to check on my weight in quite a while.

The scale tipped at X pounds. Gasp! That's 12 pounds more than how I weighed prior to Christmas season.

As with any other life crisis, what followed was the feeling of DENIAL. I took the old weighing scale, stirred it, and shook it a few times. Finally, I tried to tweak the small knob here and there. The repetitious weight checking from way back must have taken its toll on the poor scale. I'm pretty sure it had gotten defective. Plus 12 pounds?? Nah.

I rummaged through my closet to get my digital weighing scale instead. Battery's still intact. Great! I hop on it, hoping to get the truth. "Huh? Plus 12 pounds?" The second emotional stage came in: ANGER. What the heck is going on? Why am I surrounded by such defective scales? I am returning this fairly new digital scale and getting myself a refund!

The next minute, I was BARGAINING. "Lord, how could this happen to me? Please make me 12 pounds lighter and back to my previous weight. I promise not to down another Conti's brownie again. I won't even touch leche flan, fruit salad, and pasta this New Year. I won't even stare at food, I promise!"

There was no response from the heavens. I then felt DEPRESSED. "Why can't I just be like them skinny model-type girls who can gorge on a plateful and still look like they haven't eaten in days? I hate it!" *insert uber sad face here*

But with all things that come in life, there is a need for ACCEPTANCE. I finally understood the whole weight-watching drama.

As I look back at how the 12 pounds had been added to my already-well-insulated physique, I began to thank God. I gained the extra weight, because I enjoyed feasting with friends and family this holiday season. I never held myself at every Christmas gathering. I ate, drank, and celebrated as my friends did. I temporarily held off my diet to be able to party without reservations. That's where the 12 pounds came from: quality time, bonding, fun.

I put back the digital scale inside the closet. I took the other one from the trash bin and placed where it used to be. There was nothing wrong with both. They told me the truth: I gained 12 pounds, but I had fun too.

Weight management is important, but for me, time spent with friends and family celebrating with good food this Christmas season is far more valuable. I can always go back to my diet and to the gym after the holidays anyway. Corny kaya mag-diet pag Pasko!

So, for now, I'm ditching the scales, and I'm off to my next post-Christmas party! Wohoo!

Photo credits:

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Call for Help: Update

Update: Donations will still be accepted until next week (Dec.26 onwards). Thanks!

Monday, December 19, 2011

My Christmas Wish List: Updated!

01.11.12: Updating this! I received as gifts a few of those listed here. Thanks to friends and family who love me so dearly [and whose arms are so easy to twist!haha!]. As said, "Ask, and you shall receive!" :)

To friends and family who gave me Christmas gifts, THANK YOU. By gifts, I mean both the tangible and the intangible kind. For every gift I opened, for every time you spent with me, and for every Christmas memory we shared, thank you!

Christmas REALLY is just around the corner. For the past few days, I've been victim to horrible traffic, specifically in areas near shopping malls. People seem to be in the rush to buy gifts and run errands for Christmas. You'll never guess the economy is that bad.

Every Christmas, most of us, albeit the meager salary, humongous tax, and invisible bonuses, still find a way to give. May the gift be worth 10 pesos or a thousand bucks, we never fail to remember the goodness of family, friends, and godchildren, and try to reciprocate that by the simple act of giving.

So, for people who plan to give, give me a gift, that is, here is my Twelve Days of Christmas Wish List. I want to spare you from having to think of what to buy for me. haha!

To friends, this is one GIANT PARINIG. :)

1. Starbucks Ceramic Coffee-To-Go Cup. Fits perfectly in my car cup holder.

2. Digital alarm clock. I'm always late!

3. Samsung Galaxy S II. Cheap version of the iPhone.

4. Converse Low-Cut Originals in Black. My blue one is begging to be replaced.

5. Twinings Herbal Infusion Peppermint 25-pc pack. Helps in digestion (no further explanation needed).

6. Plastic floor mat for Vios. Makes cleaning the car (not that I do the cleaning. haha!) easier. This one will make my Tatay happy. :) Thanks to Nanay and Tatay for giving me this! I got the gray kind. Haven't taken a picture though..

7. Universal car charger. Lagi ako nalolowbat! Asked for this in our BG Christmas/Year-end Get-Together. Thanks Veena! Wow, only now did I realize super sakto pala sa picture what you got for me. haha!

8. Nikkor AF-S 50mm 1.8G. Low-light shots wanted!

9. Webhosting + domain. Wanting to have my place in the Internet.

10. Paddle brush. Makes long hair shine more (daw!). This one, I didn't expect to get. I was pleasantly surprised to be gifted by my old friend Je (whom I haven't seen for a while). Failed to see her personally though. Sorry, Je. Let's resked! :)

11. 16GB SDHC memory card. To store more pics!

12. Lastly, (sige na nga..) PEACE ON EARTH!

There goes everything I want to get this Christmas. Of course, I doubt anyone will even seriously consider giving me any of those mentioned. haha!

So, what is the point of listing them down? Well, nothing really. I just realized that most of the time, we do not know what we want in life, where we want to go, what we wish to achieve. We wander through life aimlessly: no direction, no goal. Lacking the knowledge of what will make us happy accounts for lack of passion and drive to go on.

When you aspire something, when you have a dream, you make it easier for God to bless you. He doesn't have to guess which blessings to shower on you when you already know what to ask for. Not that God is ever dumbfounded by anything, but if we know our heart's desires, we actually glorify Him who created us. Because, in knowing, we aspire. In aspiring, we strive. In striving, we reach our maximum potential; we live a full life. As St. Irenaeus said, "The Glory of God is a man fully alive."

So, strive to know your heart's desire, aspire to achieve your biggest dreams, and don't hesitate to ask from God. He will never deny His child.

By the way, my shoe size is 8. (Kung makakalusot lang naman!)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Empty Closet

It's that time of the year again. Why does it still feel the same way it did four years ago? I still cried a fresh set of tears this morning at the thought of what transpired at that fateful day.

I look at your room now. Your bed is a mess, if I can still find the bed underneath the high stacks of clothes piled on it. Your closet that used to store your favorite shirts, jeans, and those floral uniforms that the previous Manila city mayor imposed you wear (and you used to hate) is now full of just blankets, bedsheets, towels, and an even higher pile of our clothes up for ironing. Your dresser that I used to raid for any new stuff I can borrow (and not return) has turned into another mini altar. All of your stuff are gone. But why do I still feel every inch of you here?

I miss you, Tita Lyn. Sobra.

By the way, that blue shirt with pink collar I took from your cabinet, I use pa rin. Fits me perfectly now.

My last Christmas pic with Tita Lyn (Christmas 2006)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Facebook Status of the Day

Every BREAKUP is a BREAKTHROUGH. God will not allow His child to be hurt if there is no good that will come out of the pain.

Breakups are always possible; pain, always abounding. But know that a broken heart can always be mended by a comforting hug of a big God.

*Photo credits:

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Blue Door, White Linen, Big Dream

I opened the blue door, taking my steps in careful fashion. I feared the mocha-colored wooden panels that shrieked at my every step would eventually give in.

A huge rectangular table clothed in white was in the middle of the small room. On it were plates of morning goodies that sure made my eyes sparkle. I had not eaten anything on the way, so the stomach immediately rang an alarm at the sight of food.

I hesitated a bit, as I wouldn't want the others (Oh, so there were other people!) to notice how starved I was, wouldn't want to be labeled "The Lady Who Gorged on the Blueberry Muffin."

The battle between (saving) face and (growling) stomach was intense. One had to win. And it was the stomach.

As I munch on every bit of muffin heaven, I looked around at some new and some familiar faces surrounding the same white-linen-ed table.

How did I get here?

"Umm.. by car?," the little voice inside my head told me.

"Duh," I answered back. "I mean, how really did I get here? To this room? To this situation? To this dream? How did I get to be with these people?"

I was in the same room, sharing the same Pasig air and the same blueberry muffin, as Rissa Singson-Kawpeng, Tess Atienza, and all the Kerygma writers. Could this be just a dream? Then, don't wake me up. Please.

I remember writing this dream on my journal some time in January. And could it really be that, just a few months after, the dream would come true?

But it just did. And only because of one reason: God loves me.

There is no other way to explain it. God loves me so much to provide my heart's desire. God loves me so much to fulfill one of my many dreams. God loves me so much.

And so does He love you. There is no boundary to God's immense love for you and everything He can give you.

Dreaming of being onstage, preaching the Good News to people? Dreaming of huge success in your business, so you can provide more employment opportunities? Or simply dreaming of having a happy family life in the future, complete with visions of your would-be children and grandchildren?

Go ahead, dream! Allow God to make you the happiest kid on Earth. Your joy is His joy. Your dreams are His dreams for you. If He did fulfill my dream, how can He not fulfill yours? So, dream. And dream BIG!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

My Knight in Shining Armor

"I don't want you to get hurt again."

I clicked on the red X on the top-right corner of my computer screen and closed the email he had sent. With tears flowing on my cheeks, I thanked God for him. I had just gone through a devastating experience and needed every amount of support I can get. Along with family and friends, he provided that support.
At times, when he drives me to work, he'd suddenly hear me opening up a problem or a burden I am keeping. In an instant, he'd see my eyes well up. I know it pains him seeing me like that, but he remains composed. He then shares his thoughts and advises me what to do. He isn't really the touchy-feely guy, but his words always give me comfort and assurance that he will always be there for me.
I remember a time when I was on the brink of insanity over an opportunity I passed up for personal reasons. I cried myself to sleep over the lost chance. The morning after, I found a letter on my bedside table. It was from him. The words seemed to have been written in a hurry, but they served their purpose nonetheless: They were—as can be expected of him—words of comfort, words that assured me that I need not worry. He told me that more and even greater opportunities will come.
Upon reading the last of his letter, I said a prayer of gratitude for his presence in my life.

Yesterday, he celebrated his birthday, and I thanked God once again for him, for my knight in shining armor. He hides beneath his shield but never fails to come to my rescue. I know that I will forever be his princess. And for this, I am thankful.

Thank You, Lord, for the 53 years that you have blessed me with a Tatay who never stopped to provide and protect. Thank you for my knight in shining armor. Thank You, Lord, for my Tatay.

Tatay and me Smile

Monday, June 20, 2011

Rant 101

Sometimes I think I haven't done any single thing right the first time. An initial step would almost always require two steps (at times a giant leap)  back. A decision made would force a hundred and one retractions. An on-the-spot moment would constitute an entire week of regret and humiliation.

"I was made ready," Astroboy said. In my case, I'd likely insert a giant NOT somewhere in between that statement. I can't remember a time when I got into a sudden situation and came out of it alive, with all pride and reputation still intact. Almost always, I'd do something really stupid, make a kindergarten-level decision, and hate myself for the negative turnout.

Why wasn't I made ready for anything? Why am I the most gullible, sheltered, and naive gal there is? Why can't I just be like everyone else: street smart and mature?

I'm such a dummy. Argh.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

My Current Wish List

It's not yet Christmas. My birthday isn't coming around until next year. So I can't think of anything to call my wish list than just that: My Current Wish List.

Lord, please provide a way for me to purchase these... 

Vanguard Biin 50. The cheapest DSLR backpack I know.
Cute but sturdy and well-padded. Just like me (well-padded by fats, that is! haha).
Dent on the pocket would be PHP1950.00.

Nikkor AF-S VR 70-300mm. Found great reviews on this.
Damage if ever: PHP26,000.

More stuff will surely be added to this list unless I stop checking out the Henry's Camera website. Internet, this is your fault. haha! :)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Lola of Great Faith

“Tama na yang TV, magdasal na tayo.”

Nobody moves.

“Magdasal na tayo.”

Still, nobody moves. Eyes fixed on the tube. Ears as if plugged with giant cotton balls.

“Magdasal na tayo. Hindi natin dapat nakakalimutan ang Diyos.”

Much as I want to go on with the pretend-I-didn’t-hear-anything drama, I get up from my seat and turn off the TV, to the dismay of my cousins. Being the eldest in the bunch, I herd my cousins in front of the altar, where Inang had already been waiting for us.

This was how everyday family prayer would start when I was a kid. It was a struggle. Like gulping a spoonful of Tempra when you’re down with fever, you just want it over and done with.

But Inang seemed oblivious to the groans and sighs of her grandchildren come prayer time. She would ignore the dragging feet and the lousy answers to “Hail Mary” and would remind us that God is more important than TV. She wants us to value prayer and to always follow Jesus’ example in everything we do.

For that, I loved and respected Inang–for her faith, her wisdom, and her great love for family. But a greater testament of her faith was revealed in that day after my Tita Lyn was laid to rest.

It was mid-day. The whole family–Inang, my parents, aunts, and uncles–was gathered over lunch. We were talking about Tita Lyn’s death. We lost her when she was run over by a speeding bus. Pure hatred was the only thing we felt for the driver, and we were ready to avenge her murder.

Silent in the midst of the very emotional discussion, Inang suddenly uttered, “Hindi ko pa man sya nakikita, pinapatawad ko na ang drayber na ‘yon.” All eyes were now on her.

I thought, “How could you say that? Didn't he just kill your daughter? Didn't he just run over her several times, ignoring her loud cries for help? Didn't he just rationalize what he did? Why are you being like this? Isn't she important to you?” He had no remorse. He never asked for forgiveness. For that, I will never forget his face. His menacingly proud face will forever be etched in my heart.

As if she had read all the thoughts in my head, Inang burst into tears, "Ipinahiram lang ng Diyos sa akin si Lyn para alagaan ko at mahalin bilang anak, pero sa Kanya naman talaga sya. Kaya pinapatawad ko na yung drayber, dahil parati rin naming tayong pinapatawad ng Diyos."

That left me silent. I felt my eyes start to well up. She was right. Tita Lyn was, first and foremost, God's daughter; He must have already needed her up there. And true. If the God who made all heaven and earth could forgive sinners like us, how could we not pass on the forgiveness to others? Inang felt the pain of the loss, but she saw the bigger picture.

After that memorable day, I loved Inang even more and grew more respect for her. She is more than a daily Mass-goer, more than a prayerful lola, more than a forgiving mother. She is a true servant of God. And I pray to be like her, to be of great faith.


Me and Inang, my lola of great faith

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Decisions. Decisions.

"Obey the Lord not out of fear but out of love."

When I was a kid, I hated going to mass. Waking up at 7 in the morning on a Sunday wasn't really my cup of tea. Who would like to pull away from snuggle pillows, get up from a comfy bed, and take a shower that early? I don't know about you, but I definitely wouldn't.

But being the only minor in the family, I always obliged. That or I endure continuous poking from my dad to wake up. "Mainit na bato sa kalsada," he'd loudly say, you'd think he had a megaphone in hand.

As a teenager, my going to mass wasn't as wholehearted still. I remember being eager to complete the nine dawn masses during Christmas season just because I had a crush on one of the altar boys. Very good motivation, right?

Now, on my twenties, I voluntarily go to mass. Not because my parents told me so. Not because I like one of the altar boys (at my age, isn't that already child abuse? haha). But because I love God and I decided to grow in faith and love with Him.

As single adults, we are at the stage where we can do absolutely anything. We choose our paths. We design our lives. We make our own decisions. Yes, there may be people who give directives on how to run our lives, but each decision still lies with us.

Last Sunday, I saw more than 40 single men and women who decided to respond to God's call. Though only a simple gathering and meet-up session, the Singles' Huddle was an initial step toward realizing a single life anchored on God. On the next Huddle, I hope to see more single people making the same decision.


You are no longer a kid. Not a teenager either. You are a single adult with a decision to make, not out of fear but out of love for your God.

So, what's your decision?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Just School Stuff

She opened the candy-colored paper bag and brought out the fillings one by one. Out went a box of crayons, a sheet of stickers, and a notebook, to which she immediately said "Ah, I'll use this as scratch paper instead." Then, there were a mini notepad, a bookmark, a few colored pencils, a pencil case, and a small stuff toy.

After littering the bed with everything the tiny paper bag used to hold, she turned to me, "Ate Osy, you should give me more of these. Just school stuff. Like the dozen of pens, crayons, and colored markers you gave me last Christmas. Don't give me toys. I've grown tired of them anyway."

I thought she won't appreciate the birthday gift I had for her. But as I see her leave the room, paper bag in an embrace, I knew I was wrong. She loved the gift, however simple it was, and she knew she wanted it.

My 8-year-old cousin Maraj knew what she wanted: Just school stuff, Ate Osy. Whereas, there I was, not knowing what I wanted for myself.

For the past weeks, I've been haunted by a thought that has grown consistently since that day I met the Idol. Did I make a wrong decision? Did I just let go of my biggest dream? Did I really ditch the job I've always wanted?

I was offered an editorial job in the magazine I so wanted to be a part of since I joined the community. But I refused. Why? Because of proximity, the possible financial decline, and the lifestyle change. I could think of a million other reasons to justify my weird decision, but lately, it has just boiled down to one: comfort zone, and how I don't want to get out of it.

I wanted the job, but I feared my lack of expertise. I wanted the working environment, but I feared the unfamiliarity. I wanted the fulfillment of the dream, but I feared the changes it will bring.

Fear got in the way. Fear overcame the dream.

God, is there any other way to remedy this? Did I really make a wrong choice?

Thursday, March 31, 2011


I didn't want to get out of bed today, but I had no choice. I had to lest I lose my job.

My cellphone-turned-alarm-clock sounded off at 8am. I winked as I search for the nuisance under my pillow. Argh, 8am. Do I get up? Nah.

By some unknown force, I never want to leave my bed this morning. I am dead tired, I could trade places with Sleeping Beauty anytime.

Recently, my month has just turned into one long week. Every single day requires me to get up, prepare for the ton of things to do, leave the house, and arrive home late. Every darn single day.

I don't have weekends. Heck, the weekends are ironically my busiest days.

Lord, please grant me a few days off. I desperately need rest. That, or I think I'll go crazy.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

4 hours more

I can't think of a single part of my body now that isn't aching. My head has been hurting since yesterday from the sudden change in temperature: cold, warm, cold, warm. My knees ached badly from the whole day of driving yesterday: from 8am to 11pm. Only this morning, my right wrist started to hurt, the reason behind which I don't even know. A few minutes ago, my upper back is beginning to show signs that it wants to seek medical attention quick.

I wanna go home now and rest, but I can't. Argh. Sincerely wishing now for a four-hour-work week. Yes. four hours. (can't remember where or which book I got that idea.)

For now, guess I have to endure the next 4 hours of (trying to) work. God, help me.

Monday, February 28, 2011


I had to remove cobwebs before I started typing onto this.

It has been quite a well since I wrote. Party because  didn't feel like it. Partly because I wanted but can't seem to get my thoughts organized.

If my mind were a flow of stream, it would be most turbulent this time. And the water would be all murky and disappointing. It had been quite a tough week, an emotional battle really. There hasn't been a day that I had not fought against unwelcome thoughts. And that had just left me tired and just plain conceding.

But then, the scripture today said, "For people, it may be impossible but not with God." And I would like to sincerely believe that I can do this, with God.

Here I am, oh God
I bring this sacrifice
My broken heart
I offer up my life
I look to you Lord
Your love that never ends
Restores me again...

Restore me oh Lord. My broken heart is Yours for the taking. Shield me from what is not Yours. Restore me.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Closing Cycles by Paulo Coelho

Thanks Je for sending this. This is such a good read. Hit me right smack in the face.

Closing Cycles by Paulo Coelho

(Best-selling writer of "The Alchemist" )

One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through.

Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished. Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents' house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden?

You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened. You can tell yourself you won't take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that.

But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister, everyone will be finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill.

None of us can be in the present and the past at the same time, not even when we try to understand the things that happen to us. What has passed will not return: we cannot forever be children, late adolescents, sons that feel guilt or rancor towards our parents, lovers who day and night relive an affair with someone who has gone away and has not the least intention of coming back.

Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away. That is why it is so important (however painful it maybe!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home. Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place.

Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them. Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose. Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood. Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else.

Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the ideal moment. Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back. Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person. Nothing is irreplaceable. A habit is not a need. This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important.

Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life. Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust. Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I am Blessed

"It's difficult to walk backwards because our feet are meant to make us move forward.
Life is always better if we see what's ahead than look at what's left behind.
Forget bad past - bitterness, grudges, hatred, and pain. Move on. Forgive. Love. Smile. Pray."

I got this SMS from a sister in the community this morning, and I just couldn't help being amazed at how timely the message is.

Those who know everything that I am going through right now will agree that this message hits the spot. Many people nowadays have been telling me the same thing: Get rid of my bad past and move on. In their most loving way, they help me forgive myself, believe that everything happens for a reason, and get up from the slump that I am in. They help me realize that I am actually blessed, and indeed I am.

I am blessed to have an intact family that is not perfect but stands by me. I am blessed with love and support from friends who sincerely care for me and my future. I am blessed with talent to hone, work to improve, and personality to develop. I am blessed with great and unconditional love from my Father who will never abandon me at all costs. I am blessed.

With that, I am shattering my rearview mirror.

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Perfect Setting

Last night was the community mass for the late Feast Alabang music minister Tita Minda. Along with other Feast Alabang servants, I rode a van en route to the far away land that is Quezon City, to honor one of God's faithful servants.

I was the last one to get on the already packed vehicle. After saying a few hi's and hello's, I hurriedly took the lone unfilled space beside a little girl and then braced myself for a long and unmemorable ride. Or so I thought. I didn't know that from this little girl, from such a small package, would come a great realization that I aptly needed.

Sitting beside the little girl was her mom. Without intention, I overheard their conversation. (The van was that packed.)

The mom said, "Start working on your assignment, so that, when we get there, you're all done." To which the little girl answered, "Ok, Mom." She then began opening her stuffed backpack.

After a few minutes, the little girl was still searching through what seemed like a bottomless pit of books, notebooks, pens, and school stuff, to the dismay of her mom, who was already waiting for her to begin.

"Aha! Found it!" The little girl has apparently found what she was looking for. Must be a gold coin or something, I thought.

"There it is." I saw in her hands a dark-colored rosary. "Now I can work. I have Jesus na." The rosary was the missing gold coin.

And then I realized just how great that statement was. The little girl, just about 8 or 9 years old, could not start doing her assignment without Jesus. It was absolute dependence. It was the great need for Jesus. It was the belief that she could not do or begin anything without having Him first.

Right at that moment, I realized that I have lost such dependence. Through all the things that I have been busy with recently and all the tasks that I had to finish, I have somehow relied only on my own strength. I have been too preoccupied with clearing my to-do list that I have forgotten the real source of my capabilities. I have failed to acknowledge Jesus' presence and His work in my hands. I have grown utterly self-dependent.

With that, I said a silent prayer of surrender. I asked Jesus to be the right hand for when I am writing, the fingers for when I am typing, the mind for when I am working, the body for when I get going. Without  Him I cannot do absolutely anything.

As the van neared our destination, I thanked God for letting me be where I was: a lone seat in a packed van beside a little girl with great faith. The setting was perfect.

(Photo source: