Category Archives: Spirituality

Real Love vs. Imitation Love

Text-heavy post. But I reckon it’s worth the read. Especially for those who seek real love.

Last Saturday, my friends and I trooped over to World Trade Center for Real Love Revolution II, an afternoon of talks by Youth Ministry veteran Chris Stefanick and America’s Next Top Model finalist Leah Darrow. The first installment of this was held in SMX  last year where we heard Jason Evert speak. We were all blown away with his talk and were, thus, all excited for the second part of Real Love Revolution! 🙂

Just a short note on the Real Love Revolution (from their Facebook page):

“Real Love Revolution is a movement by young people who have come to a clear realization that not everything the world labels as love is love in its real sense. Seeing that choosing to subscribe to a false version of love can be destructive, these young people have decided to work at spreading the true meaning of love by putting up events that not only help enlighten the minds of the youth but also aid them in appreciating and in celebrating genuine love, with all its joys and pains. In partnership with I Am S.T.R.O.N.G., RLR is now celebrating its fifth year carrying the constant tagline and challenge,”i Keep Love Real”.”

A truly awww-worthy photo of Chris with his baby

What I appreciate about this year’s Revolution is that there are two speakers who got to address both the male and female crowd. I’m sure the guys learned not just a thing or two but a whole lot from Chris, who is also a father to three girls, on how to be a real man. And the girls certainly oohh-ed and aahh-ed over how pretty Leah is (I know because I was fangirling), who, by the way, effectively channels modesty in her own demeanor.

The talks were awesome – the content was right on and the speakers were moving but never preachy. I was so tempted to bring out my notepad and pen and take down notes during the whole talk. 😛 I’m so awed with both Chris and Leah that I find myself typing up this post and sharing with you tidbits from that afternoon’s talks. Continue reading

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Because He is a God of Beauty.

My post today is very personal to me. It’s part of my battle with insecurity. Believe it or not, I have battled with insecurity since my teenage years. I had really low days in the past and it resulted in not very good choices.

But our God is a God of love, mercy and forgiveness. Despite my wrong choices and bad decisions in the past, His love has never ceased for me.

There are days when I pray, “God, please take away these negative feelings from me!” Something happened today which brought back the ugly emotions but I’m very thankful for it. Perhaps, it is my blessing in disguise for the day.

I prayed for the feelings to go away. I didn’t want to go back to how I was before. The merciful and loving Father never fails and below is a product of my inspiration during my prayer time.

I wish to share and dedicate this to each and every girl out thete who ever thought they weren’t beautiful enough or that their life wasn’t just worth living.

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[Tumblr Photo Challenge for February] Days 2-6

Photo dump coming right up! 😀 Photos I posted for Days 2-6 the February Tumblr Photo Challenge.

Day 2: Words

“Life may be marred into a broken thing but God can make it into a thing of beauty.” – Treasure in Clay

One of the most beautiful passages in then-Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s autobiography.

Bad experiences, wrong choices, unwise decisions – all of these can break us but the Potter can always remold us jars of clay into, maybe not a Ming vase, but an equally beautiful clay pot.

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From Jars of Clay to Vessels of Grace

My current read, which might just make it to my ‘Books to Read Again and Again’ list, is Treasure in Clay: The Autobiography of Fulton J. Sheen. To call it inspiring would be to say the least about it. The former archbishop touches on the very beautiful topic of human frailty and its intersection with the magnificent grace of our Lord. He talks candidly about it in a very personal manner, speaking both like a spiritual director and like a trusted friend.

A few of my favorite quotes in the book include:
“God does not make anything with the purpose of destroying it. There is no waste in life. Childhood is not a waste. It has relationship to the rest of life.”

“That portion of us w/c is tried and tested, w/c is subjected to many trials, is not a waste. The tears, the agonies, the frustrations, the touls are not lost. All of these, w/c seem to militate against life, are worked into new forms.”

“Life may be marred into a broken thing, but God can make it into a thing of beauty.”

As the Conversion of Saint Paul is celebrated today by the Catholic community and today’s homily focused on the mandate given by Jesus to the eleven apostles in today’s Gospel, Treasure in Clay immediately came into my mind. Indulge me as I write down and share a few of my thoughts with you.

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Do I Really Know How to Love?

Love is one of my favorite topics to talk about. Actually, I’d like to think that it is one of the favorite topics of people. There are so many shows, books, songs, art talking about love.

I’ve had my own romantic relationship and also experienced love within relationships with family and friends. The bigger question I now pose to myself is this: “after all that is said and done, do I really know how to love?” Continue reading

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Busy?

Are you busy? Chances are you’d say ‘yes’ without batting an eyelash. As Kimmy Go Dong Hae (in Kimmy Dora) would say, “Pressured ako! Busy ako!” with that ‘awwr, don’t come near me’ tone. And as we all know, being busy is one of the most convenient excuses.

The reflection for today’s First Reading came as a powerful reminder to me:

“It’s very easy to be busy but there is a need to be busy doing the things that God wants us to be doing.”

It made me pause and reevaluate  my busy life. What are the things I’m busy with? What keeps me up at night? What gets my mind moving at a passionate pace? What makes my heart throb quicker?

It’s indeed easy to fall into the trap of being busy, of letting life take over you instead of you taking charge of your life. Yes, we all have obligations and responsibilities in life – those are all very real matters that can neither be neglected nor pushed away.

I used to think that being busy was a valid excuse – even with God. For a time, I neglected my prayer life and got caught up with, well, sadly less important things. 😦 Thankfully, I was able to, so to speak, make my way back into the fold.

Hopefully wiser this time around, being busy ceases to be an excuse. It’s no longer acceptable to lie down at night and forego praying because the day has been ‘long’ and ‘tiring’. It’s also no longer acceptable to be selfish and snappy just because there is ‘too much pressure’. One of my most important learnings is that each day is an opportunity for sanctification – to make one’s day a gift to the Lord by doing one’s best and offering it up to God.

“Every activity – be it of great human importance or not must become for you a means to serve Our Lord and your fellow men. That is the true measure of its importance.” (The Forge, 684)

Today, I urge you also to offer all your works for sanctification, to make every thing you do an expression of who God is. Or at the very least, to ask yourself, am I busy with the things that God wants me to do?

 

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Freed from Slavery

What enslaves you?

Too much work (yes,  it can be addicting at some point)?

Food (aray)? Excessive indulgence in luxuries?

Gossip? Smoking? Pornography?

Excessive love for money?

Your past sins?

Photo from The Family Court Chronicles

Modern-day slavery is the kind of slavery that is not too obvious at the onset. It is unlike the traditional notion of slavery where a person is bound to or is maltreated by another entity. This type of slavery seeps bit by bit into your own personal system until it becomes a habit then an addiction.

As I have mentioned in my previous post, Living and Dying, the resurrection of Jesus has freed us from our slavery. Yes, you are free! And Jesus tells us, “Do not be afraid.

Do not be afraid to embrace this freedom. Do not be afraid of the struggle in order to change for the better. Do not be afraid to stand up for the truth. Do not be afraid to live out your faith everyday. For your salvation has been paid full by the Son who gladly gave up His life for us.

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