Tuesday, November 19, 2013

God Likes Using the Ordinary: Reflections During My Book Launch

"Why me, Lord? I'm just an ordinary breastfeeding mom. I'm not a doctor. I'm not a lactation expert or a certified breastfeeding peer counselor even."
That was my initial reaction when God first inspired me to write a book on breastfeeding. I have just achieved my breastfeeding goal then for my firstborn son. I thought that it would be helpful if there would be a book by a Filipina author on breastfeeding where inspiring stories of breastfeeding moms who went through various challenges but succeeded in achieving their breastfeeding goals would be shared. I was convinced that this was a good idea. But I was not convinced that this book should be written by me.
It took me some time before I acted on this idea and owned it to become one of my dreams. In the course of owning it and embracing it as one of the dreams that God planted in my heart, I came to realize what an enormous task God has entrusted to me. I felt overwhelmed countless times throughout my journey of finishing this book. Then, as I invested more time in this book project, God revealed to me one of His reasons for choosing an ordinary breastfeeding mom like me to write this book.
God likes using the ordinary...
and that includes ME.
I pondered on this revelation and reminder. I was led to reflect on the people whom God used throughout the course of history. He used shepherds, fishermen, prostitutes, tax collectors, sinners, ordinary mothers and fathers. Not all of them were credible, competent or worthy based on the world's standards. Yet, God chose to use them. God chose to send them out on a mission. They may not be qualified but God chose to qualify them. They were not able at first; but God eventually enabled them.
God simply asked them to be available, to be at His disposal, to use whatever they have and offer what little they have to Him. And whatever they offered as part of their service to Him, God blessed and multiplied so that His purpose was fulfilled.
This revelation and reminder from God enabled and empowered me to carry out my task and complete my latest book in spite of the challenges I faced along the way. I would call these truths to mind every time I was feeling insecure and inadequate.
I also realized that another possible reason why God chose to use an ordinary mom like me to write this book on breastfeeding is because more moms can possibly relate to me or understand me because of my ordinariness. The book I wrote is not a technical book on breastfeeding. It was written from the perspective of a breastfeeding Filipino mom telling her breastfeeding story with the hope that by sharing her experience, she would be able to make a difference to other moms who may be struggling as well in their own breastfeeding journey. An ordinary breastfeeding mom reaching out to another breastfeeding mom.

The cover photo in my book's Facebook Page.
I grew in conviction as I pondered on these things. Then, God showed His mercy and favor once more to me by speaking to my heart through a couple of talks by our community's leader (Bo Sanchez).
I remember vividly how tears rolled down my cheeks as He gave a talk on Significance. He said that we need not wait until we are successful in all aspects or successful to the point that we have reached the highest level of success in one area to work towards becoming significant in the lives of others. He said that we can be significant by simply helping others get to where we are. Wow! What powerful message! It was powerful enough to push me forward whenever thoughts of insecurity fill my mind.
Yes, I'm not a doctor. Yes, I'm not a lactation expert. Yes, I'm not a certified breastfeeding peer counselor. BUT, I have succeeded in reaching my breastfeeding goals for my two sons. I have succeeded in overcoming a number of breastfeeding challenges in the past four years. That's where my goal and my mission stems from. My mission is to help fellow breastfeeding moms reach or achieve their breastfeeding goals by inspiring them through my story and the stories of other moms whom I featured in my book.
Then, I heard another talk in one of our community gatherings that helped God's message to me to become deeply rooted in my heart. It was given again by our leader Bo Sanchez. He said, "God has cancelled the audition. You're in!" He also said that while we are busy with our ordinary tasks, God can at any time anoint us and call us to be on a mission for Him. That was my experience! That's exactly what God did to me. While I was busy breastfeeding, homeschooling and working from home, God anointed me and called me to write this book. I didn't audition or try out for the part. I'm glad that the audition or qualifying tests were cancelled. For I would not pass if I would be tested based on the world's standards. God simply said to me through that talk, "You're in! You got the part! Go, and fulfill your mission!"
After several months, I have finished my book BREASTFEEDING: A Journey Worth Taking. It was time to launch it into the world and share God's message that mothers were amazingly and miraculously made by Him to nourish and nurture their kids through their breasts.
I was blessed and privileged to be given the opportunity to share about my book at the BIG DAY of our community's latest talk series. I was awed by God's perfect plan and timing once more for one of the main messages in our recent talk series is about how wonderfully made we all are. The speakers/main preachers talked about how God looks at us differently compared to the people of this world. They shared how we can focus more on God's truths by deleting the negative thoughts that enter our minds.
I remember the question asked by my brother and friend in the community and the Feast Builder for Feast Ortigas' PM Session. He asked, "Have you experienced rejection? Have you experienced being scrutinized from head to toe and vice versa? Have you experienced being judged as not measuring up to standards?" I think most, if not all, people there at Robinson's Galleria Cinema 3 answered yes to his questions. Because that's how the world operates. The world's standards are simply different from our Lord's. Thus, it's important for us to know the truth about ourselves, about our worth, about what God wants us to do and what He expects from us. For in the end, what truly matters is that we live our lives for God and not for anyone or anything else. God wants us to live our lives confident of our calling/anointing, bearing fruit based on the gifts He has blessed us with.
The video clip showed during The Big Day of our latest talk series moved me to tears as well. It was a video of Susan Boyle at Britain's Got Talent. The video showed the audience laughing at her. Maybe they laughed because she looked unqualified to be standing there. Maybe they were wondering why someone who looks so ordinary had the guts to join the talent search. But their laughter eventually turned to applause and tears even after she proved them wrong in laughing at her or judging her to be unworthy or unqualified.
Then, just before I was called to speak and share about my book at the PM Session, the worship leader talked about how even in our ordinariness we can make a difference. Bull's eye!
I felt as if the stage was set for me... that God was the director of my book launch and He has stationed/moved His angels (my brothers and sisters in the community) to help us put things in place.
I praise and thank my God for standing by me and making a way for me. I thank Him for the honor and the privilege to be used even in my ordinariness. May He be glorified as I bring His message to more moms here and abroad. May His magnificence shine through my ordinariness.
"Not to me, not to me, but to His name be glory!"

Note: I'm linking this post to the Catholic Bloggers Network Monthly Link up Blitz for November 2013.


  1. Thank you for sharing this. It is a timely message for me because my circumstances have again forced me to abandon WAHMing for now, and I fear the world's (and my family's) judgment about being a fulltime SAHM. But I hold on to the idea of God using me in my 'ordinariness'.

    "The world's standards are simply different from our Lord's. Thus, it's important for us to know the truth about ourselves, about our worth, about what God wants us to do and what He expects from us. For in the end, what truly matters is that we live our lives for God and not for anyone or anything else. God wants us to live our lives confident of our calling/anointing, bearing fruit based on the gifts He has blessed us with."


    1. You're welcome! Thank you also for taking time to tell me that my message in this blog post has touched you. God bless!