Tag Archives: Bible

Through Heaven’s Eyes

During the Holy Week, I was able to catch the movie “Prince of Egypt” on cable.  It’s been awhile since I last saw this film, but it always brought back fond memories.  The film is a wonderful combination of creativity, music and love.

A single thread in a tapestry, though its color brightly shine, can never see its purpose in a pattern of the grand design.

How can you see what your life is worth? Or where your value lies?

You can never see through the eyes of man.

You must look at your life through heaven’s eyes.

Whoah! Did you get that? A single thread in the tapestry of the pattern of the grand design. I am floored. Beautiful.

Aside from watching the movie, I also highly encourage you to see this live version of my favorite song in the film “Through Heaven’s Eyes” sung by Brian Stokes Mitchell together with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

He’s absolutely lovely here, especially as he sings with the choir!

Enjoy folks…

And remember to always look at your life through heaven’s eyes 😉

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Drowning out the noise

I made a blunder over Facebook wherein I commented on a friend’s status on marriage and she privately told me that she was no longer married. Right then and there, I wanted the earth to swallow me whole out of embarrassment.

Marriage scares the sh** out of me. Well, to put it more subtly, I am TERROR-STRICKEN with the concept.

But despite the fear, I would like to be married to one person, and start a family of my own as well one day. However the statistics of divorce, annulment and separation are getting so high even here in the Philippines, I am pained to think that marriage has no more meaning anymore.

I value marriage so much that I am careful who I see or date.

It is critical that me and my (future) spouse see eye to eye on a lot of things that involve parenting, roles between husband and wife, financial matters, lifestyle and yes, most importantly, our spiritual lives.

They say, if you put the Lord in the middle of your relationship, everything will work out on its own. I would like to believe that.

I would like to think that my (future) marriage would be so strong that it will weather out affairs, financial hurdles, the challenges of being a parent, death in the family and yes, even boredom from one another if we put the Lord in the center of it all.

I read somewhere that so many people wish and hope for the right husband or wife to marry, but they seldom pray to BE the right spouse to their partner. It’s always what we want, what we can get in return and never actually caring/serving the person you chose to marry.

I am guilty of this. I seldom look at myself and what I need to work on: my stubbornness, my headstrong personality, my bossy attitude. I don’t look at myself because I am too busy looking for someone who can cater to what I want in partner.

Obviously, I am not ready for marriage and needless to say, I have so many things to work on.

So when does one know when one is ready for marriage, really?

I’ve had my share of temptation and honestly it has not been easy for me. With invitations here and there, I am constantly tempted to forgo the marriage thing and throw caution to the wind.

But every fiber of me says “Wait. Stand firm, Paula”.

I am slowly realizing the difficult part of Love, the waiting.

There is this verse in the Bible which has been used to encapsulate what Love really means. “Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked,does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” – 1 Cor 13:4-7

Do I show the qualities of love? Am I patient? Am I kind? Do I endure? Do I bear all things? Do I act arrogantly or unbecomingly? Am I easily angered? Do I constantly seek out my own?

I want to drown out the noise and focus on what is the substance of a fruitful and rewarding relationship and it will have to, painfully, start with one’s self.

Miss Tolentino still has so much pruning to do.

My Quiet Time Struggles

ThankyouGodformylifeandsorryforallmysins.Amen.Goodnight.

Zzzz…

This encapsulates my quiet time with the Lord: In the evenings, before I doze off.

Bad.

In the Christian life, quiet time is required. If not, a prerequisite to really grow in your spiritual walk.

Quiet time is best done in the mornings, a few minutes before you get out of bed. Quiet time prepares and sets you for the rest of the day.

I do mine by putting on Gospel music, lying in bed, raising my hands and then going back to bed (to sleep, nonetheless). Yes, quite funny a sight.

Quiet times with me are all done in a hurry, everything in short cut. I am very lazy to do my quiet time. (Which also explains why I have been getting into trouble lately) 😉

I brought this up with my group. And my D-Group leader has been very understanding.

For the past week, she calls me up first thing in the morning (more of like my alarm clock), then says have you done your quiet time? I say yes. She asks, what scripture have you read? I say I will have to open my bible again because I just made highlights. Then she asks have you done journaling? No, but I do highlight some parts in the Bible and she giggles, saying “Pau, you also need to do journaling or scripture won’t stick”…

I must say, despite my leader’s cool, calm and jovial exterior, she’s one tough spiritual leader.

I say, sheepishly…Ok… I will try do journaling…And she ends the call and sweetly reminds me, ‘Let’s talk later over at MBS. Please attend Pau’.

Why do I suddenly feel like a child in need of constant reminding? So embarrassing (shakes head).

My quiet time needs to seriously improve.

But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. – Matthew 6:6

The War Within

Now that I am reading Ayn Rand (again), I can’t help but get inspired by the men and women she brings to life. The central theme of all her works is the concept of Man-Worship.

It’s quite funny, but the biggest book influences to me are Ayn Rand and the Holy Bible. Both inspiring. Both controversial. Both polar opposites.

To be fair to both of them, I guess what they both have in common is always gunning for excellence. To be the best possible person you are in all facets of your life. Though the term ‘best’ is defined differently in both books.

A few years back, during my initial readings of Rand, I admit, she gave me strength but at the same time she confused me. I went through a Rand-worship phase.

Rand is a radical. A rebel, if you must. But that is also why I love her so much. She believes in the human potential. She is immensely in love with it.

I can’t say I am any bit like her, though I would like to be. She is sure of herself, what she wants and what her purpose in life is. She values competence, strength and intelligence. I hunger for that kind of person in real life.

There is an ongoing war within me. I want to take pride in what I do but the Bible talks differently. It advocates humility, self-control, patience and other fruits of the spirit. Why shouldn’t I take pride in what I do? Why can’t I enjoy my passions to the fullest?

Sometimes, I feel sad and torn inside. My walk with the Lord is bringing me more questions than answers.

 

A Book of Promises

Books are the friendliest companions anyone can have. It can define a person. It speaks to one’s deepest thoughts, creativity & personality. In the website dictionary reference.com, a book is defined as handwritten & printed work of fiction (and non-fiction), usually on sheets of paper fastened or bound together within cover.

Today, putting E in front of the book will immediately send off the words similar to that of the printed type, such as handwritten, printed and cover.

Way back in grade school, Sweet Valley High & Sweet Dreams were the most popular reading material among girls. High school was an extreme one. Bookworms will have a library of the best classical books like: JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings which sold over 150 million copies from 1954-1955; CS Lewis’ the Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe that from its release in 1950, sold 85 million copies while JK Rowling’s H. Potter which sold 450 million from 1997-2007.

But guess what book sold 6 billion copies since it was first printed?

The Holy Bible.

Even adding up the 3 books that I sighted cannot outnumber the amount sold by the Bible.

The Bible is composed of 66 books, 39 of them is the Old Testament while 27 is the New Testament published approximately in 6900 languages with 40 authors. Some people perceive this book as a basic instruction before leaving earth.

I believe this is the most neglected book in the world. May I see the hands of those who have a Bible? Now, may I see the hands of those who read it everyday?

Do you know that it is banned in at least 52 countries?

Just to mention a few: The government of China, for example, allowed the book to be distributed to churches and seminaries but could not be mail-ordered by individual or unregistered churches. A certain Pastor Gong in China was arrested in 2001 and is serving a 19 year prison sentence. He suffered a stroke last Dec 2012 which left him paralyzed and unable to speak. Even at the age of 85 and given his condition, his family was denied visitation.

In Morocco, they allowed the Bible to be printed in French, English and Spanish but not in Arabic.

In Maldives, only foreigners can have Bibles in private.

How did the Bible become such a big threat to these countries?

In Hebrews 4:12 , it says “ For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any double edged sword, it penetrates even to the dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow, it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

People are being persecuted in other countries for speaking the truth. What is wrong about a life changing experience? I’m not talking about the Life of Pi but the life of Jean Valjean in Les Miserables who encountered God’s grace and decided to turn over a new leaf.

The Law of God is the simplest to accept. Faith = salvation.

The law of man is legalism. Mistakes = punishment.

What then do you prefer?

Inside the Bible you can find  stories like Noah’s Ark, Joseph the Dreamer, King Solomon’s Proverbs,  David’s Psalms,  Jesus’ Parables and other great literary pieces. You name it! It took 1600 years to write this book.

And sad to say, after what I just openly shared, the truth is we still look for other books to read. Maybe the controversial gospel of Judas or perhaps the unpopular gospel of peanuts?

Stephen Covey who died July last year wrote in his book “People who don’t read are no better off than people who can’t read.”

Think of the Bible as a Love letter from a perfect Father who does not want us to be led astray in this world but to teach us how to live life according to His will. The will to purposely live for Him as his children, made into His likeness for His pleasure.  If your dad gave you a letter wouldn’t you be excited to read it?


About the Author:

Aside from being a lover of water sports, the sun and everything about nature, Miss Duckie shares her time and talents at Sunday school and works as a Financial Consultant for a prestigious and private investment firm in the Philippines