Wednesday, October 19, 2011

God's Choice and Mine

I wrote this reflection around 5 years ago. I'm re-posting it because today, my husband and I, celebrates our fifth year together as boyfriend and girlfriend.

I thank God for the grace to recognize His anointed bridegroom for me that fateful/faithful night. I thank Him for leading me and George to each other. I thank Him for our relationship and the family we now have.

Over the years, I have discovered and accepted that he's not a perfect husband, lover or father. But like David, his love and passion for me, our family and God are enough reasons for rejoicing and to keep on loving him everyday.

Thank you once more, Lord God, for this wonderful man in my life.


A lot of things happened recently which were not part of my plans. Like the brother from LOJ who courted me and who has been so persistent I could not shake him off. I’ve been ignoring him for the longest time. I think ever since I noticed that he’s attracted to me. I didn’t want to pay attention to him or to the things that he does to show his affection because I didn’t like him. I was not attracted to him at all. But in spite of my efforts and my schemes to stay away from him, he has managed not just to remain but even get closer to me each day. I could not understand at first. In fact, I was even irritated at some point. Then, God made me realize that although things were not happening according to my plans, things were happening according to His. I was reminded of what Gamaliel said about the apostles. He was telling the council to leave the apostles alone because what they are doing will eventually die down if it’s not of God. But if it is of God and they go against them, they might find themselves going against God. So although I wanted so much to stay away from him and ask him to stop courting me, I allowed him to continue because I didn’t want to find myself going against God.

Around past midnight of last Wednesday – that was already October 19 -- God gave me a much unexpected surprise.

We have just attended Bible study at Greenbelt chapel. When we arrived at my apartment, I asked him his insights on the Bible passage I asked him to meditate on, 1 Samuel 15. I have received this passage in my prayer time and I felt strongly that it was not only for me but that I needed to share it with him. So after much thought and prayer, I decided to give it to him. At the back of my mind, I was thinking and quite expectant that after he reads it he would decide to stop pursuing me. Well, aside from the fact that I wanted him to do that, I also know very well the main lesson in that passage. It talks about King Saul’s disobedience and God’s rejection of him as king because he went ahead of God. So I was very surprised, and a bit shocked, when he shared his insight.

He said that he was struck with verse 17: “Even though you consider yourself of no importance, you are the leader of the tribes of Israel. The Lord anointed you king of Israel.” I was really taken aback when he shared that he was struck by this verse so I asked him to explain why. His reflection surprised me even more. I was speechless for a few moments. I could not believe I was hearing those words from him. What he shared was very different from my expectation.

He said that he was struck by that verse because that’s exactly how he feels particularly in his relationship with me. He feels so unworthy of my affection especially because he knows I’m more spiritually mature than him; but because he loves me, he continues to ask God for me. And to receive that word from God, he felt so blessed that God has anointed him. That although it’s something that he thinks he’s undeserving, he expects in faith that God will answer his prayer. He chooses to believe that God can give me to him.

At that point, I could no longer ignore or deny that God’s favor was upon him. God instructed me in 2001 to use the character of King David as guide in choosing my future spouse. I studied his life and his character so that when someone comes my way, I could discern if he has David qualities or not and that would enable me to decide whether I should choose someone or not. I have learned that David means “God’s anointed or God’s chosen one.” I have learned that David has a very humble heart and a very strong faith in God. So, after hearing his insights, I realized that he has David qualities and that God has anointed him at this time for me to choose him. So although I didn’t want to choose him, because I know that God has anointed him, I chose to trust God’s wisdom and to submit to His plans. I have anointed him that night after hearing God’s voice. He’s now my boyfriend.

I honestly had a lot of hesitations and fears but I simply chose to abandon them and trust God completely. I have so much faith in Him. I know that He would not give me something that would harm or hurt me. I know that His plans are best and that He knows me best. I know that I could not rely on my heart because the human heart is so deceptive and unstable. But I know that God’s heart is very reliable. He has repeatedly told me that He sees and knows the hearts of men and so I asked Him many times in the past to show me who is worthy of my love and I would accept and rejoice in His choice. I would be a hypocrite if I do not admit that I didn’t struggle to accept and rejoice in God’s choice. I struggled much actually but I chose not to focus on the struggle but to focus on the truth of God’s Word. I have always used His Word as a lamp to my feet and that night, He gave me just enough light to make another step of faith. I thank God for the grace to say yes not only to George but more importantly to Him.

Happy Face for Mommy

Yanthy’s teacher/occupational therapist explained to him a few weeks ago that he will get happy faces if he obeys the house rules set by her during their sessions. If he obeys them all throughout their one hour session and every time they have an activity, he can get as many as five happy faces. If he violates any of their house rules even with warnings from his teacher/therapist, he gets a sad face. To check if he understood what she has explained, she asked Yanthy again why he should obey the house rules. Yanthy said that he will get a happy face every time he obeys the house rules. Moreover, he said that he wants to get happy faces so that Mommy would be happy. His teacher/therapist shared this with me after their session. I was so touched.

Motherhood and parenting can be very demanding and challenging every now and then. I sometimes feel like I’m a broken record that keeps on repeating my instructions and reminders. But there are days like this when my heart jumps for joy because of something sweet or wonderful that my little boy has said or done. It’s true that he’s not always disciplined and lovable especially when he doesn’t listen to me even after I have repeatedly asked him to do something or to refrain from doing something. But that afternoon, I was content to know that his motivation for doing well in his sessions and obeying the house rules set by his teacher/therapist was to make me happy.

I was reminded of God’s patience and loving kindness. I admit that I’m not always obedient. Many times, I sin and make mistakes even though I try my best to live a holy and righteous life. And every time I go to confession or come before God in prayer, God assures me that it’s alright. He encourages me to keep on trying and to just keep on doing what is right in His sight. That too, is enough to make Him happy.

“Get up, get over it, get going.” That’s the fifteenth step in Failing Forward according to Dr. John Maxwell in his book Failing Forward which Yanthy handed to me as I was about to finish writing this article. It’s as if God was using him to tell me that mistakes are a part of our lives and how we deal with them is what makes a big difference. Dr. Maxwell’s title for his fifteenth chapter of the book is also very encouraging. It says, “It’s what you do after you get back up that counts.” Yes, it’s inevitable that we make mistakes every now and then. But do we just sulk and stay where we made a mistake? We need to persevere and keep on trying, keep on learning until we overcome our weaknesses.

So today, with these thoughts and insights in mind, I choose to persevere and start over. It’s a brand new day. It’s a beautiful morning! And as Dr. Maxwell puts it, I will turn my mistakes into stepping stones for success, be it as a wife, mother, writer, whatever! I know that like St. Paul, as I run the race with perseverance, I will one day gain an everlasting crown. On that day, I will have the happiest face which is a reflection of the Father’s happy face. Thank you, Yanthy, once more for the inspiration.