Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Being Rich Is Not About How Much You Have, It Is About How Much You Give

"Being rich is not about how much you have, it is about how much you give." This is now my favorite quote. The video below explains why. It moved me and reminded me that we are called to serve others not just ourselves. 



(Published in The Huffington Post)

It shouldn't take a seven-minute video to make us appreciate what our parents do for us, but we've found one anyway.

The clip above is from Viddsee, a company in Asia that curates and shares powerful short films. In this one, titled "Gift," a son feels neglected by his father for most of his childhood. But when he grows up, he learns his dad's cold exterior was hiding a soft (dare we say, funny?) interior all along.
It's a simple reminder to not judge a book -- or a dad -- by the cover.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Filipino Daddy Blogger Observes Lent for the First Time

I’m observing Lent for the first time this year. My wife inspired me and gracefully challenged me into fasting and committing the next 40 days for self-reflection, sacrifice and prayer. This article from writer Nathan Finn also articulate what I was thinking and feeling about it (excepts posted below).

I'll keep the details of my fasting to myself. But one thing I made sure before deciding to do this is to set the motive of my heart right. Am I doing this to please others, myself or God? I started to prayerfully reflect on this question the other day and will continue to do so during Lent. I'm a dad, a husband, I'm religious, a Baptist, none of these labels matter before the Lord. In the next 40 days of Lent, the only identity important to me and will humbly practice before my Holy Father is "beloved son." 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Games I Suggested to Play With My 4-Year Old Son Early This Morning


Games I suggested to play with my 4 year old son early this morning:

1. The Lets Pretend Sleeping Game
2. The Statue Game
3. Who Can Not Speak or Talk the Longest Game
4. Who Can Hide Far Away the Longest Game

We played Game #3, but it only lasted for 3 minutes.


The joys of sleepless parenting.

I need new game ideas... that will work! Any suggestions?

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

How Does This Evangelical Look at Catholicism?

Growing up surrounded by Catholics in the Philippines, I share my colleague Gina's thoughts on what evangelicals share in common with Catholics. I respect the Catholic faith and although I was brought up to think this way, I don't consider all Catholics as non-Christians. In fact, my favorite prayer is The Lorica or St. Patrick's Breastplate which I read from time to time in the morning.

Below are some highlights from Gina's article that can be read in full here.

Out of ignorance, or misinformation, or sometimes just a fervent desire to separate themselves from error, many well-intentioned evangelical Christians believe and spread gross untruths about Catholicism. In my experience, many are unwilling to engage with Catholics themselves on these issues; they prefer to get their information, such as it is, secondhand.

She added...

And on a larger scale, I’m suggesting that the Catholic faith doesn’t deserve to be treated like the redheaded stepchild of Christianity.

I agree! And,

I’m not trying to deny the differences between Protestantism and Catholicism. They’re very real and very important. Even Chuck Colson and Father John Neuhaus, in their seminal document Evangelicals and Catholics Together, acknowledged as much: “Our communal and ecclesial separations are deep and long standing. We acknowledge that we do not know the schedule nor do we know the way to the greater visible unity for which we hope.” They added, however, “We do know that existing patterns of distrustful polemic and conflict are not the way.” 

And, finally...

But despite all the teachings I don’t understand or don’t agree with, I believe that there’s truth in the Catholic Church, and that this truth is a valuable common ground where evangelicals and Catholics can come together and try to do away with those “patterns of distrustful polemic and conflict.”

(Read more: The Things We Share, BreakPoint.org)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Holy Spirit, Living Breath of God


An artist said, "We can participate in the arts to the glory of God by enthusiastically enjoying the arts, recognizing God as the ultimate source of the creativity and beauty that we enjoy." The arts can help us sort out and discipline our emotions, so that, from our hearts, we might serve God and our neighbors as we are called to do in Christ.

I would like to introduce you to the beautiful hymn that moved me to tears, "Holy Spirit, Living Breath of God" written by modern liturgists Keith Getty and Stuart Townend and sung by Kristyn Getty (video above). The violin solo at the beginning is “Gabriel’s Oboe” by Ennio Morricone, from the movie soundtrack “The Mission” and the melody itself is heavily influenced by J.S. Bach. Also included is a reading of The Lorica (Breastplate), a prayer of protection traditionally attributed to Saint Patrick of Ireland.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A True Love Story In Pictures You Won’t Easily Forget

I want to share this story with you. Their photos easily tell the entire story. Taylor and Danielle, two young people deeply in love and demonstrates the Christian definition of "true love." True love is NOT  a feeling. It's not about being happy, or having your needs met. True love is all about self-sacrifice and what you can give to your partner. 

Click here to see what I mean.

(h/t The Poached Egg)

Sunday, November 10, 2013

How to Help Victims of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) If You Live Outside the Philippines



My family in the Philippines were spared from the crushing agony and unimaginable grief of loss brought about Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan). But many are still suffering from the devastating calamity. According to a report, 10,000 people are estimated killed by the storm twice stronger than hurricane Katrina and Sandy.

This is a time to pray for those who need God's strength the most right now will experience it and a time to help demonstrate God's goodness to Filipinos in any way we can.

In response to several inquiries regarding how to send help to Filipinos affected by the Typhoon, I would like to inform the public that online donations from overseas donors may be sent through the following organizations (Sources: CNN.com, Rappler.com & @candyreyes):

Emergency support
Philippine Red Cross, 1-212-687-6200.
CARE, 1-800-521-2273 within the United States or +1-404-681-2252 outside the U.S.
Catholic Relief Services, 1-877-435-7277.
Convoy of Hope, 1-417-823-8998.
Mercy Corps, 1-888-747-7440.
Oxfam America,1-800-776-9326.

Food and water
World Food Programme ,1-202-747-0722 or +39-06-65131 for international calls.
Samaritan's Purse, 1-828-262-1980.
World Vision,1-888-511-6443.
Action Against Hunger, 1-877-777-1420.

Shelter
ShelterBox, 1-941-907-6036.
Habitat for Humanity, 1-800-HABITAT.
Architecture for Humanity, 1-415-963-3511 or text REBUILD to 85944 to make a $10 donation from your mobile phone.

Medical assistance
Americares, 1-800-486-4357.
International Medical Corps, 1-800-481-4462.
Direct Relief, 1-805-964-4767

Helping children
U.S. Fund for UNICEF, 1-800-367-5437
Save the Children, 1-800-728-3843.
ChildFund International

(UPDATE: Another way to help is to send Team Rubicon to the Philippines. Team Rubicon is a group of US Military veterans and medical professionals committed to relief and disaster response. It will be your way to offer help to Filipinos by sending experienced and qualified rescue volunteers to towns affected by Typhoon Yolanda / Haiyan. Click here to help send Team Rubicon to the Philippines.)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Marriage is NOT For You

I love this post from blogger Seth Adam Smith. Something worth reading!

Seth is married to his wife Kim for a year and a half, but he concluded that married life isn't for him. Why? Because he realized that, marriage is about the person you married.

One doesn't get married to make him or herself happy - you marry to make someone else happy. Your marriage isn’t for yourself, you're marrying for a family, for your future children.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Miss World 2013 Megan Young Says "Sex is For Marriage" and "I'm Against Abortion"

 
It's refreshing to see this message bluntly expressed on TV.


I don’t follow beauty contests but the recently crowned Miss World, Megan Young of the Philippines caught my attention. I got interested not because of her world-class beauty but because of the statements she made that are also important to me as a father of a young daughter.

The 23 year old actress beauty queen openly said on TV that she is pro-life, does not use contraceptives, opposes divorce, and thinks the only way to avoid unwanted sex is to just say no.

In an interview with foreign journalist Karen Davila, Young said, Well, I’m pro-life and if it means killing someone that’s already there, then I’m against that, of course. I’m against abortion.

When asked about the Philippine Reproductive Health Act (RH) bill and contraception, she said, I don’t engage in stuff like that as of now. I think that’s – uh, sex is for marriage. That’s my belief. So, when it comes to the RH bill, as long as my beliefs are no abortion; it should be with your partner for life. Then that’s my stand.

The RH bill, which was signed into law in the Philippines in 2012 is controversial of its mandates on sterilization, contraception, and abortion-inducing drugs. In the Philippines, more than 80% of the population identify themselves as Roman Catholic, 10% as Protestant and 5% as Muslim.

On divorce, she said, Divorce. I’m actually against divorce, because I’ve seen, of course, that in my family. So I think that if you marry someone, that should be the person you should be with forever, through sickness and health, through good and bad, you should be with that person.

When asked how do you say no to sex? Young has a direct and simple answer, You just say no. If they try to push you, then you step away because you know that that person doesn’t value you, doesn’t value the relationship as much – and if the guy is willing, you know, to sacrifice that, then that means a lot.

Way to go Miss World! You're my kind of beauty queen. I don’t mind my daughter looking up to you if it’s grace, truth and modesty you’re modeling.

It’s rare to find allies like her in the media. Those who are bold to express a not-so-popular opinion in our “do-what-you-feel-is-good” culture. I just hope she walks the talk when the camera lights are off and will not compromise for anyone or anything. I hope more young people around the world will hear her message.