Do we still need Valentine’s Day when every day we celebrate love?
Yihee! Heart, heart, heart!
FULLY-BOOKED, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig — When stressed from work (which is often) and when in Manila (which is rare), this is the place where I find refuge in getting lost. My usual route: magazines-inspirational-fiction then workshop materials at the basement. Sometimes, I just give in to my senses, and let curiosity take over.
The place closes at 11 PM, and I’m always one of the last to leave. Always, it feels like leaving home. Interesting fact is that half of the time, I leave the place with nothing. Not that there was nothing that got my interest (that would be impossible), only that I couldn’t decide which to get! Well, here’s a place where optional paralysis actually helps.
After graduating and passing the boards, I was ablaze with one passion: To find my place in this existence. My style has not been well-directed, I must say, but at least I knew I was focused on trying to make a difference. I winked at God, and told him I was ready to carry out His missions, armed with a college degree, years of experience in ministry life and, ehem – a faithful heart.
A job came. There was passion in it. Also cause.
The pay came. Then expenses. Then more expenses. Then it wasn’t enough anymore.
That’s when I took the wheel from His hands.
Probably one of the most difficult to take among Jesus’ instructions is faithful abandon to His will. In Matthew 16:24-25, Jesus said: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.”
Tough one, huh?
During my time with the Youth Ministry, it was all very easy to absorb. It may have been either my young faith (..faith like that of a child’s..) or obviously simpler circumstances (I was a student, living with my family and finances were never really my problem.) I dedicated most of my time serving Him through the ministry. And true enough, He provided for me.
But, facing the real world is different. It’s about survival and security. And yes, sanity. Sometimes, it would seem that there’s nothing bigger than the future. It can haunt you like a towering sinister in the dark night, closing in, closing in; until you’re ready to give up everything for security. And it confuses your conviction, you forget what you are fighting for. There was passion, cause and noble dreams. Now, there’s financial security.
I’m not saying the two are mutually exclusive goals. And financial security is definitely not evil. I’m saying, the problem was my approach.
Following the difficult pill to take (Matthew 16:24-25) is a cold, refreshing watermelon shake on a hot summer day: “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?” (v.26)
God is omniscient. He is the Alpha and the Omega. He knows what happens in our story. He knows the Create-Your-Own-Story version of our life.
Now, I’m slowly letting go of the wheel. It’s His anyway. In my haste to control my life in the midst of confusion, I have forgotten the simple fact: He’s God, I am not. Why should I trust myself more than Him? It’s not easy, but definitely right.
My prayer: Today, Jesus, take the wheel. Please teach me how to take control, but not be controlling; To look to you always and to regain Faith like that of a child – completely trusting. Remind me that You know.
And because I dream of dying a writer, here’s my shot for it.
Hope this works!
“Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplacable spark. In the hopeless swamps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all, do not let the hero in your soul perish and leave only frustration for the life you deserved, but never have been able to reach. The world you desire can be won, it exists, it is real, it is possible – it is yours.” (Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged)