Project Rearrange

“This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.” – Psalms‬ ‭118:24‬ ‭

I thank God for touching the hearts of my children as they take the initiative to help organize our home.

Frustrated Homemaker

For the longest time, I have been wanting to put our home in order. With the demands of having a breastfeeding baby, my hands are full most of my waking hours.

I have the desire in my heart to do house chores — clean up, organize, do the laundry. My frustration gets worse every day that I see the mess and not the progress.

A Wonderful Surprise

After a week of working and tending to the baby, my fiancé and I decided to take a break from all the work and relax on Sunday night. We watched a movie in the room while we let the girls spend the rest of the night doing their thing.

After the movie, I went to check on the girls and to bid them goodnight. Busy packing the art materials she used for her school project, my second-born, Ocean, told me that she and her sister, Rainbow, packed away the toys that used to lay on the sofa and the floor.

I was very happy and blessed to see progress in the girls. Before, if I don’t tell them to help out, they wouldn’t even lift a finger. Now, even without me saying so or expecting anything, the girls contribute in making our home a better place to live in.

A Wonderful Surprise Part 2

This morning, I was awoken by my fiancé’s voice from outside our room. He kept saying, “Excuse me. Excuse me,” in a gentle voice. He was talking to our son who was trying to help him move the huge living room furniture.

He took the time to rearrange the common areas according to how I envisioned it to be. I wanted to move the living room on the other side of the open space. This way, we don’t get to disturb my parents, whose room is right below our living room, when my son copies the moves from the action movies he watches.

Asking the Lord for wisdom on how to rearrange our home, my fiancé and I shared ideas and worked together. Once the work was done, we were both happy and surprised with how spacious the new arrangement turned out.

Spacious and Cozy

The new living space is cozy and encourages bonding moments either by engaging in conversations or watching a movie as a family. The new formal dining area is spacious and also serves as a good place to have serious conversations.

The Lord is amazing! He has orchestrated today’s workload to be much lighter than we usually have. Truly, “This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.

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Project 2018

16 Always be joyful. 17 Never stop praying. 18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-17

Happy New Year everyone!

This may be a late greeting, but better late than never.

No More Drafts

I have been wanting to write more posts since last year. I would wake up in the morning thinking, “I’m going to write a post after I’m done with my work and my chores.” I would start my day excited about what I’d share as I experience yet again another day of God’s faithfulness.

Despite this excitement, I find myself with a lot of drafts in my Notes App, ten to be exact. I don’t plan on making this the 11th “unproclaimed” goodness of the Lord.

The holidays went by with thoughts of a system I can apply in my blog writing. How about the same day each week? Or randomly (meaning anytime I get to finish a post)? Or daily, which would imply more effort on my part?

Family Theme for 2018

As I was walking around my new favorite place today, I thank God for impressing this in my heart: If our family’s theme for 2018 is More Prayerful, More Thankful, More Intentional, then why can’t I do the same in my blog?

I originally created the blog to share how God faithfully works in my life, my circumstances, my relationships. I want to be intentional in developing in me an attitude of gratitude. With our family theme, it’s about time I get intentional about proclaiming God’s great and wonderful deeds.

I thank God for giving me this down time to think and praise Him as I look at the wonderful heavens (Yes, I love looking at the heavens — it makes me feel closer to my Heavenly Father). It says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 to be thankful in ALL CIRCUMSTANCES for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

Blessing in Disguise

I work from home so the Internet plays a big part in my life. You guessed it — I don’t have Internet at home today so I had to go out and work at a nearby coffee shop. If I had Internet, I wouldn’t have the chance to be alone and have that quiet walk, which God used to speak to me about worshipping Him in my writing.

CBTL by Sky copy.png

Several times today I was tempted to close my eyes and take a quick nap while waiting for my fiancé to finish his work so I can start mine. There’s no problem with taking naps, but I was writing this post while waiting for my turn.

As I give in to my body’s call for me to rest tonight, let me end this post with thanks and praise to the One who never fails to provide for our needs so we can do the work He has entrusted to us and who gives us the strength to be intentional as we seek the Lord in prayer with a joyful attitude and a grateful heart regardless the circumstances.

Just like the New Year greeting in the beginning of this post, it’s never too late to start over.

How about you?

Is there something you’ve been wanting to start doing but you feel it’s too late to do so? What’s preventing you from making that crucial first step? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and let’s support and encourage one another as we start the new year.

My Kind of Guy

Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:7‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I thank God today for the conversation I had with my beloved.

Something’s Up

I noticed something was not right when I woke up this morning. Working in front of his computer, my fiancé was unusually quiet with a somber countenance.

I asked him what’s wrong and gave me “that” look – the kind that says, “Yes, we need to talk, but not now. Let’s make time.” Understanding the look on his face, we agreed to sit down and discuss whatever it is that’s going on in his mind once we’re both done with our professional responsibilities.

”Robotic” Life

When we finally had the chance to sit down, I waited in anticipation, not knowing what to expect from him. Then, he started talking about his observations on our daily life. Robotic is the word he used to describe it. We rarely talk anymore since we’ve been busy working and taking care of the kids.

He expressed his concern that we might end up not knowing each other. He’s sad that we don’t laugh the way we used to. He’s afraid that we might end up fighting over trivial things because we’ve lost our connection with each other.

Missing “Us”

He doesn’t want any of those things to happen to us. He misses the “old” us — the us that could go on talking for hours without us noticing it because we were genuinely enjoying each other’s company, yes, over coffee. The “us” that could stay up the whole night talking that we had to have pizza delivered in the middle of the night because we couldn’t get enough of each other.

After hearing him out, I asked him for any suggestions as to how we can allot time for each other and make time to talk. We came up with a daily and weekly schedule that we’d start implementing tomorrow. We even had a good laugh — one that had him in tears because he misses “us” so much.

Important vs Urgent

Hands on computer keyboard

Photo by Sky

I thank the Lord for the heart He gave to my fiancé. Yes, doing our work is essential. Yes, taking care of the children is necessary. But prioritizing what’s important over the urgent things is something we both learned at this life-equipping program we attended a few years ago.

Our relationship shouldn’t take a backseat just because we’re too busy making money and raising a family. On the contrary, all the more that we should be intentional in staying involved because we are parents. We may not see it but our children are watching us. Partly, their security is determined by how we — their parents — act, react, and respond to each other.

I thank God that the leader of our family knows his priorities. I thank God that my fiancé makes deliberate efforts to preserve and care for our relationship.

I thank God for His goodness, His favor, and His grace. I didn’t do anything to deserve this great man. BUT GOD works in ways we cannot understand. I am grateful that God shows His love for me through this humble and selfless man.

I bless Your Name, Lord

I praise You, Lord, for You are good. I thank You for this wonderful man that you blessed me with. He is an unexpected yet much appreciated gift from You. Help me glorify You, Abba, in my response as we intentionally put You in the center of our lives, in the center of our relationship, and in the center of our family. In Jesus’ name.

To My Beloved

Thank you, My Love, for loving me so! For loving me all those years despite my imperfections and poor decisions. For loving me for “me” — no more, no less.

I look forward to glorifying our faithful God on the day we say, “I do.”Until then, thank you for deciding to stay pure. Truly, we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. All for God’s glory.

A Mother’s Love

Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! – Isaiah 49:15

2E0D8D0F-51D6-4FE6-BE71-8506AFE1AAFAStaring at my little one as we played this afternoon, I got teary-eyed as I praise and thank the Lord for the joy and love I feel for my child.

Her big, brown, happy eyes stared back at me as she gave me a sweet, sweet smile.

Her soft little hands always find a way to hold mine. Once she’s caught them, she’d hold me tight and not let go.

I thank God for the privilege of having children. For the opportunity to love my children this way. For the pleasure of celebrating each and every milestone with them.

Please don’t grow up too fast, my child.

When I’m all old and wrinkly, yes, I may forget. My body will get weak and my memory may betray me. But God never forgets, my child. He loved you in my womb. He loves you now. He will continue loving you forever.

Please don’t grow up too fast.

All in God’s time.

All in His perfect time.

The Fight: Home Organization

I am the Lord your God. I am holding your hand so don’t be afraid. I am here to help you. – Isaiah 41:13

I thank God for reminding me that I don’t need to face the fight alone.

The Status Quo

Staying only for a few months at our new place, we don’t have a house help yet so we ask someone to do the weekly laundry and the cooking (partly) for us. With the new baby, a very active toddler, and work dome remotely, time spent doing the laundry could be time spent with the kids or relaxing or bonding as a couple (which we haven’t done in a long while).

The Challenge

For a short while, the laundry woman would be away. We have two options: bring our clothes to a laundry shop or do it on our own. We don’t have an automatic washing machine – just a spinner, no dryer.

On her departure day, the laundry woman left our clothes hanging to dry. Now dry, the clothes are on the couch, there’s a big basket of clean clothes waiting to be sorted out, and the toys are all over the house. Yes, the house is a mess.

The Reality

Simply looking at all the clutter makes me feel stressed. I don’t know when I can start working on the dry unfolded clothes since the baby feeds every one and a half hours. She wants to be carried and cuddled in between feedings. I couldn’t leave her on the bed because my active toddler might jump on her.

I have to think of a system for doing the laundry, cooking, breastfeeding, family bonding, and working. Knowing me, I work best with a routine. But routine is currently a challenge especially with having a new baby.

The Fight

After reading today’s devotional, I realized that I am in a “fight.” A fight to organize despite the family demands. A fight to prioritize what’s important over the urgent things. A fight to stay sane despite the overwhelming tasks in my head. A fight to stay joyful despite the chaos.
The Promise

I thank God for reminding me of His promise in Isaiah that He is here with me. I’m already comforted by the fact that I’m not alone. I’m reminded that God is holding my hand so I don’t need to believe the lie that I have to go through these challenges on my own. I’m reminded that God is here to help me. Oh, thank God that He is an ever present help!

My part

Pause. Breathe. Ask forgiveness for my worrying and silent complaining. Be humble enough to ask for God’s help and wisdom. Be joyful for His presence and do what I ought to for His glory.

Thank You, Lord, for reminding me I don’t need to face this fight alone! Thank You that You are always with me!

How About You?

What fight are you facing today? Is there a task you keep putting off? A conversation you keep delaying? A truth you have to reveal?

Write down your fight on the comments section so I can say a prayer for you.

Finding Security

Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. – Psalm 127:1a

Source of Joy

As a parent, I take joy when my children are being expressive of their love towards me. It feels good to be needed – not in a demanding, pressured way under stressful circumstances, but when they ask for my opinion or my assistance or when they simply want me around because it gives them comfort or security.

There’s nothing wrong about wanting to be needed. But if I depend my joy on how much my kids need me, then I have a big problem.

Teary Morning

Photo credit: Sarah Noda/shutterstock.com

I have seen this issue manifest a few weeks ago. I walked up to my son one morning – he’s a toddler, and greeted him with a cheerful and loving “Hello.” His response? He looked at me and shook his head. He didn’t want my smile, my affection, my hello. Or so I thought.

You may think it sounds lame, but I was hurt when he rejected me. Teary eyed, I walked away thinking that my kids only want me during the “difficult” phase of their lives – when they were newborns and couldn’t sleep in the middle of the night, couldn’t do things on their own, couldn’t clean after themselves.

Where to look

But God convicted me. I realized that I depend on my children for my security and sense of worth when I should be fixing my eyes on the Lord to be my security and source of worth.

I thank God for this realization because I was made aware that my children are slowly becoming the idols in my life – again. I was expecting them to be the joy in my life when my joy should come from having the Lord’s presence in my life.

The first time I realized that my children became my idols, God scourged me big time and I mea, BIG TIME. I didn’t want that to happen again. I know better now, thanks to the Glorious Hope program that God used to help me align myself back to Him.

I am also thankful to the Lord for making me see that I was trying to build my home in my own strength. Psalm 127:1 makes it clear who should and will build my home. And it’s not me. Apart from the Lord being the foundation who builds my home, then all my hard work is worth nothing.

I bless the Lord

I bless the Lord for His quick conviction of my deceitful heart.
I bless the Lord for helping me set my heart right with Him as he made me aware of what’s happening in my heart.
I bless the Lord for the forgiveness He offers at the cross of Jesus.

How about you?

Where do you find security in your life? Who or what is your anchor? Who builds your home? Do you give your best hoping everything will turn out right? How does that work for you so far?

Hopeful for Mom

1How joyful are those who fear the Lord — all who follow his ways! – Psalm 128:1

As I was recording my praise report on the calendar on my phone, I realized I have so many things to thank God for! Among the many, I choose to praise and thank God for my conversation with my mom this afternoon.

Secretive and Self-Reliant

My mom is a very secretive person. She doesn’t share her burdens, her worries, even the happy moments in her life. I think this is because she’s used to being alone. She’s been self-reliant even from a young age being the eldest in the brood and the business “helper” of my grandparents.

My dad has been living abroad since my siblings and I were born. My mom raised us on her own and I’m thankful she didn’t give up on us. I know that she’s currently going through tough times especially with the legal concerns regarding some commercial properties she owns.

This afternoon, we sat together at the living room while my newborn slept on the pillow on her lap. Her hair has been turning white and her skin starting to get wrinkly. Mom suddenly opened up and told me that the properties already have a buyer. If she and the other party agrees on a price, this transaction would end the legal dispute.

I am so happy to hear the news that one of her major concerns would be lifted off her shoulders. I praise God for this development since I know the suffering and sleepless nights she went through to make things right.

To Leave or Not to leave

On top of that, we also talked about selling our ancestral home. A buyer has already made an offer and it’s a good one. It’s the only credible buyer she’s had in so many years. I can see in my mom’s eyes that she wants to consider the offer, but something is holding her back.

Teary-eyed, Mom expressed her attachment to the house. I know there are a lot of memories that go with this house, especially that she grew up living here. I also know that a lot of tears has been shed in this same home. Mom is having a difficult time moving forward as she holds on to the tears and the life she lived in this home.

But it’s time to move on. Her siblings are already living a good life abroad, while she’s left with all the responsibility of managing the properties and handling the setbacks left by my deceased grandparents.

Even with her age, Mom can always start anew. I hope she would want to start anew.

I am so thankful and grateful to the Lord for going before us and with us in this journey. I continue to hope and pray for my mom to realize that in spite of the ups and downs, real joy and peace can only be found in the Lord.

I’m excited to see what the Lord has in store for my mom. As much as I’d be delighted to see my mom living a good and debt-free life, I hope that she would also desire a debt-free eternity. This is only possible through Jesus.

Lord, I thank You for Your promise of a joyful and prosperous life to those who fear You. Even if we don’t know yet where to go should the deal push through, I continue to trust Your hand the same way that I entrust Mom and her eternity to You. May she open her heart when Jesus comes knocking. Nothing is impossible with You, Lord. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

How about you?

Is there someone in your life who needs the joy and peace God promised through Jesus?

Lullaby

I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. – Psalm 139:14

600-01887386I savored every moment she slept on my chest – my little bundle of joy with her tiny arm wrapped around mine.

She sleeps longer when I carry her.

I’d like to believe it’s because she’s so close to my heart that she hears a familiar sound – the music that lulled her to sleep while the Lord knit her in my womb – my heartbeat.

The connection between a mother and her small, delicate child is amazing! This link can only be designed by the greatest artist and creator – my Lord and my God.

Truly, You are amazing, Lord, and I praise You! Great are Your works; I know that full well.