Monday, September 22, 2014

Grateful for Today

If you have been following me in Instagram and Twitter, you may have noticed that for a couple of months or so, I have been using the #grateful #gratefulfortoday hashtags. I woke up one day realizing how blessed I am to be receiving blessings, from the most incredible to the simple ones, that I believe being thankful is the only way to receive such goodness coming my way.

Some might argue (?) that to be grateful when all the good things in life are going your way is just natural. But that's not what I'm saying. What I am saying is: start living a life of gratitude and see what it does to your life.

It makes you see the beauty in the mundane. 
The world may not be perfect, but when you have an attitude of gratitude you begin to see the exquisiteness of things around you.

Patterns. While we were staying in a bed and breakfast hotel in Cebu
My daughter's find from Book Sale

You appreciate each day given to you.

You don't have to be terminally ill just to comprehend how beautiful life is. Things may not be always going your way but a thankful heart will invariably see the purpose in every circumstance.

The more you are grateful, the more you give. Therefore, the more you receive.
I have experienced this countless times. You don't wait for the blessings and then give and  then be thankful. It's the other way around, I believe. Be grateful. Be a blessing. Be blessed.

How about you? Are you grateful for today? What makes you grateful? Would love to hear from you. :)

Note: Please feel free to use #gratefulfortoday in your social media posts. Let's spread the spirit of gratitude! Thank you. :)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Things I Wish I Realized Before Our Moving Out Day

We're done! Finally! We've finally moved out of the apartment in Quezon City and already settled in my mom's house in Laguna. It was 2 whole weeks of packing (one week) and "moving" (one week) things from one place to another. I would like to say it's fun, but in reality it was not. My husband and I were so exhausted and our daughter as well. What's more, the moving day occurred on the birthday week of our dearest ladybug.

So, after those grueling weeks, we have finally sort of "restored" our calmness. I won't say it's completely restored; we have lots of adjustment to do but everything is working out just fine (hoping and praying). When the dust finally settled, I was in the midst of contemplation and somehow wished that I had these things (which I'm going to share with you) grasped before we moved out. Well here goes my list. Wish I had realized that:

To plan is one thing, to actually pack is another. My husband and I had already in mind what month we're going to move out of the apartment (we've lived there for 6 years). We had planned to start packing months before the moving out day. However for some reason, we were not able to actualize our well-thought plans. So when the last week of August rolled along, I was panicking!

It is never too early to pack your stuff. I am a self-confessed organized person. I love organizing stuff and I believe that everything should have a proper place to land on. So, I had started packing some of our things early on. But the "busyness of life" got in the way and I forgot that I still had lots of packing to do. After putting some stuff in plastic bins/crates, because I got busy with other "matters of life", I put off the "pack up" days.

More is less and less is more. I have often heard this saying. I have actually applied it to other areas of my life. But I didn't realize its relevance when it comes to acquiring stuff in our house until that week. At that time, I was like "I wish we only had less stuff." If we had less stuff, then we had more time to do other things than pack; if we have more stuff and less day for packing, that spells chaos. After what we had gone through, I told my husband, "When we finally have our own house, I want less but functional stuff." I'm glad he agrees with me. :)

Our daughter may be just a toddler but she should be informed too. Our little ladybug was just weeks away from turning 3 years old and I thought it wouldn't "harm" her if she's not aware that we're moving out of the apartment. Well, I was wrong. As young as she was, we realized that she should have been prepared and informed for the change that's about to happen. After all, she's part of the family, isn't she? What happened was, while her daddy was packing all our stuff, including her toys, she was watching and asking, "What you doing, Dad?' Of course her dad gave her a matter-of-fact answer and we were shocked at her response. "Daddy, no! Don't pack my stuff, please! I don't want to go. I want to stay here. I want to live here. This is house!" She was saying those words as she was sobbing so hard I stood still and felt like my heart was being crushed. In my mind I was like, "Oh no. We should have told her. We should have let her know about the change." As soon as those thoughts filled my mind, I lovingly hugged my daughter and said, "Baby, we are moving out of this apartment. We are going to stay at Mama's house. I'm so sorry we didn't tell you right away." It was all that I could say. I never thought that she would be affected; she's only a child, she wouldn't care. But the truth is, yes she's just a child and yes, she does care.

Now that we're starting to feel "at home" again in my mom's house, I'm considering of letting go of some stuff that we don't really need. After all, we're not going to stay here for long. I'm pretty sure that when the right time comes and the Lord wills, we'll be moving out again. I am praying and hoping that when that time comes, it will be to a place which we can call our very own.

How about you? Have you experienced moving in to a new place too? What were the things you realized when you moved out? I would love to hear from you. :)

Monday, September 1, 2014

Shameless Audacity

One day I was having my "quiet time" and reading Luke 11. I know I had read this passage so many times before but I believe this was the very first time this phrase caught my attention: shameless audacity. It touched a chord; it hit home.

What  is shameless audacity?
Jesus mentioned it as he related a simple allegory to his disciples. The disciples asked Him to teach them to pray but besides giving them a sample, He taught them how to pray.

Shameless audacity is simply coming to God's throne with faith in your heart that God will do it whatever you are asking from Him; firmly assured that He is willing to give it to you because He is God and He is good. You never get tired of knocking at His door because you know deep inside your whole being, He hears you and He listens. Shameless audacity doesn't know fear, anxiety and worry. Instead it is familiar with assurance, confidence and trust. Right there in the unfathomable recesses of your heart, you just know that an answer to your pleas or even cries, is on its way.

Are you in need today? Approach God with shameless audacity.