Category Archives: Life

June 21, 25 Years and counting…

“Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your vain life that He has given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun.”
Ecclesiastes 9:9

I thank God for my wife for all the years that have been and the days yet to come…YES! We celebrate in our marriage God, Who for these twenty-five years by His grace…”for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer…

I praise God for my wife, thank you dear Jujubee for always being obedient to God. All those years I thought I’d navigate life just fine on my own…”Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” Genesis 2:18

And He did through Nenita. His help arrived in my wife. Thank you dearest Jujubee!

In commemoration of our celebration, here are twenty-five (25) events often remembered on June 21:

1. 533 – A Byzantine expeditionary fleet under Belisarius sails from Constantinople to attack the Vandals in Africa, via Greece and Sicily.
2. 1547 Great fire in Moscow, 2-3,000 killed
3. 1607 1st Protestant Episcopal parish in America established, Jamestown
4. 1661 Treaty of Kardis: Russia & Sweden sign peace treaty
5. 1788 US Constitution comes into effect when New Hampshire is the 9th state to ratify it
6. 1834 Cyrus Hall McCormick received a patent for his reaping machine.
7. 1864 – American Civil War: The Battle of Jerusalem Plank Road begins.
8. 1898 – The United States captures Guam from Spain.
9. 1900 – Boxer Rebellion. China formally declares war on the United States, Britain, Germany, France and Japan, as an edict issued from the Empress Dowager Cixi.
10. 1905 – Philosopher, author and playwright Jean-Paul Sartre was born in Paris.
11. 1948 – Lord Mountbatten resigns as Governor General of India (formerly the last Viceroy)
12. Columbia Records introduces the long-playing record album in a public demonstration at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York, New York.
13. 1952 – The Philippine School of Commerce, through a republic act, is converted to Philippine College of Commerce, later to be the Polytechnic University of the Philippines.
14. 1953 – Benazir Bhutto is born Pakistani financier and politician, 11th Prime Minister of Pakistan.
15. 1964 – Jim Bunning of the Philadelphia Phillies pitched a perfect game in a 6-0 victory over the New York Mets.
16. 1973 – The Supreme Court ruled that states may ban materials found to be obscene according to local standards.
17 1977 Menachem Begin became Israel’s sixth prime minister.
18. 1982 – John Hinckley Jr. was found innocent by reason of insanity in the shootings of President Ronald Reagan and three others.
19. 1989 – The Supreme Court ruled that burning the American flag as a form of political protest is protected by the First Amendment.
20. 1993 English mathematician Andrew Wiles proves last theorem of Fermat
21. Father’s Day (Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Uganda, Pakistan, United Arab Emirates, United States)
22. Go Skateboarding Day
23. International Yoga Day (international)
24. Day of the Martyrs in Togo
25. 1992 – Rizty & Nenita celebrate marriage!!!

The heart of her husband trusts in her, ​​​​​​​and he will have no lack of gain. ​​​​​​​​​​​She does him good, and not harm, ​​​​​​​all the days of her life.”
Proverbs 31:11-12

Praise the Lord!!! ​​​

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Grounded…What now heartache?

On July 20,  the 2012 Ford Fiesta a.k.a. our vehicle had to be towed to the repair shop. Two days before the tow, the car would not “start.” Like a “smarty pantsy” fool, I positted all possibilities why it would not start. These included hypothesizing the following: it was too hot, affected the computer, lets wait for it to cool down; it won’t start when its sunny, lets wait for early afternoon; and there were other thoughts that crossed my mind as to why the car would not start. Like I said, foolish.

Fiesta


Roy, the service advisor, did the intake at which point I tried to sound “technologically adept,” he listened intently to my narrative on the history of the “non-starting episodes” of the car. Looking back, I think he might have thought me a silly rather than smart, maybe a “smart-fool?” Over the next two weeks, none of my theories ever panned out. It was like waiting for a diagnosis in which the doctor is unable to pinpoint exactly what’s wrong without going through a battery of tests. For two weeks we were without a “reliable” car, but thanks be to God for my brother in law Ricky, he lent us his car.

Interestingly, 108 days have passed since “my service advisors” were equally confounded with my condition. My wife later pointed out the parallel between my experience and that of the car.
The Fiesta had been installed with an after market GPS system which turns out is not compatible with the original specs of the manufacturer. In other words, the GPS was not properly wired because it was an “add-on” that Fords computer system rejected. What’s the parallel? 

In Ecclesiastes 12:13, I am reminded of my whole purpose, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all.” Ecclesiastes‬ ‭12:13‬ ‭NKJV‬‬‬‬; in the ESV translation, we are given of the same verse, “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” How do I connect this verse to the car? Bear with me…The Bible tells me, tells you, that I am made in the image of God…you are made in His image and as we read in the preceding verse…I am to “Fear God and keep His commandmentsthis is the whole duty of man (what I get to do).‬‬ That is my purpose. Consder these words, When “… God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good...” As far as God’s creation is concerned, it was all good. ‬‬ 


But sin entered the picture, like that misplaced GPS, it was never part of the original‬‬ equipment and ever since, there has been an incompatibility problem, a shorting of the car. Some days it will start, some days it won’t. Kinda like the flesh and the Spirit, Romans 7:15-20 and 8:6. As for me, I want to do what I want, did so before the operation, still do. Friends, the “heart of the matter, is the matter of the heart.” Instead of that infernal GPS, I should have been running on the “eternal GPS” (God’s Positioning Spirit) as evidenced in John 14:26 & 16:13.

I had to go through a quadruple by-pass because my internal wiring was in disarray that it shorted out from all my “past feastings”, and boy did I love to eat; the Fiesta? its wiring shorted because of a “foreign” gadget, it too, had to be re-wired and put in order. My part in caring for the car is to properly “maintain” it, as I must with myself.

Does this mean my heart can be continually abused again and again, by me? As in, I can eat what I want when I want to? God forbid!!! Of course I must needs to be mindful that my body is no longer my own, it never has been, it belongs to God (1Corinthians 6:19-20). 

Rehab team beginning with my wife, and doctor


My corrective, next step, began in an emergency room (I had to be towed to it) in May, only to end up on an operating table several days later n May 28; since then, I have begun to go through cardiac rehab, which serves as a reminder to know my limits. Rather than exercising my “rights”, these days, I get to learn to exercise my “limitations” and let God be God in my life, and this leads to a “healthy life” in Jesus Christ, for Him, by Him, through Him!

With every heartbeat…

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.”      2Corinthians 4:16

There is always the proverbial “good news, bad news scenario” in our everyday walk as a Christian. But as the Word of God tells us, “…do not lose heart…” Ever since my life-threatening procedure , I’ve encountered, not nightmares or dreams, but visions of the “what if…maybe…is it possible?” myriad of passing thoughts.

Examples? Well, for one, here’s a thought that has crossed my mind once or twice in the last few weeks: “if they worked on my heart while the rest of my parts was placed on a machine, what happened to my conciousness while my heart was being worked on?” It’s like, were they (my heart and mind) ever disconnected? Answers? anyone?

Then there’s this other nagging question…I’ve got a saddle that helps regulate the mitral valve on my heart, a foreign object if you will, inside of me. Lately, I’ve been having this phantom itch across my chest…or is it?  You see, these are some of the things that go on in my mind. Is it unique to me? Or does every person who goes through a Quad by pass go through these same experiences that I still do?

Bayanihan, moving from one place to another in the spirit of community.

The wholeness journey of the repaired heart begins with the Physician in charge. An local illustration that comes to mind is the Filipino word bayanihantaken from the word bayan, referring to a nation, town or community. The whole term bayanihan refers to a spirit of communal unity or effort to achieve a particular objective.” As well as the references we are looking at, there is a revelatory component in all these things I have experienced.

Bayanihan, as defined above is in Scripture…1Corinthians 12, which speaks of the unity of the body of Christ, different parts, make up the whole, always in tune with the other parts. One limb hurts, the other parts, though separated by distance, are affected. Therefore, the answer to my question as to whether the rest of me was ever disconnected while I was out of it, is no. I was connected, always have been, always will be connected in Christ.

Now, how does that relate to me? Parts of my whole was diseased. A scary word to use but thats what the cardiologist said to my wife after the  angiogram  was concluded. God, who promised me, “… He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6. This is one of the good news items I spoke of earlier, everything God does is always good. And He isn’t done with me yet. Still residing at this temporary address we call our physical body, waiting for the Lord to call me to our permanent address…”But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like His glorious body, by the power that enables Him even to subject all things to Himself.” Philippians 3:20-21

What does my quadruple by pass have anything to do with all this? I don’t know, but God does. That is my prayer for each one of you, family (wife, children, grand children), friends (close, acquaintances), and strangers (at least to me), grab hold of each day to bring glory and honor and praise to the One Who redeemed you, Who Redeemed the world. More of Him and less of yourself as my wife would say. 

Nenita, Alma, & Me…our inner self is being renewed day by day.

Once we’ve surrendered ourselves, the clouds of doubt and anxiety float away. Even after major surgery! Then, we can say in confidence, not in ourselves but to Him who does it all for us…”Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.” You see, thats it, day by day with Jesus Christ. Moment by moment, all 86,400 seconds of every single day. Every second that my heart beats is a gift of God.

Heart Beats by God

1-at-BDH
Nenita and I preparing for the angio-gram. Which translates into an ambulance ride to the Philippine Heart Center through the streets of EDSA.IMG_1262

Joining us for the angio, Errol and Jun at the Heart Center.
2-Errol-and-Jun-at-PHC5-all-in-the-familyGetting a visit from family, Errol, me, Cynthia, Lorenza, May, and Nenita

3-Internet-accessHaving to go to the Cafe to make use of the internet available there, thank you!

9-visited-by-old-friendsOld friends visit, Gene, Freddie, and Robin. Thanks guys!
then New friends introduced by my lovely wife…10-visited-by-new-friends

7-Nurse-stationThe ones given charge to look after me and other patients, gather at their station, the Nurses Station.

IMG_1422

My surgeon, Dr. Rommel Cariño joins Nenita after the operation. Thank you.

8-first-steps-post-opMy first steps off the bed since the operation. Praise the Lord!

6-reflectionsNenita takes me for a drive around the periphery of the 4th floor. Reflections of reality.

12-post-op-stance

Post operative stance at the ICU.

14-trail

My legs, where the vein was taken from for the quadruple bypass. Thank you Lord for the hands of Doc Carino.

19-field-trip-at-PHC

Nurses going off duty give us a ride down the elevator, good job!

18-visitors-from-afar

New found friends from Nueva Vizcaya visit post op.

20-lab-work

Lab work at Silang Specialists Medical Center for my Pro Time, the balancing act.

16-Fathers-day-date-2

Father’s Day out to Calaca, Lemery, back to Tagaytay!

It’s tiiime…Fall 2015

“Your hands have made and fashioned me; give me understanding that I may learn Your commandments.”
Psalm 119:73

John-3-3

Join us in prayer for the students who will attend our Fall 2015 semester. In the Philippines, or anywhere for that matter, deciding to attend Bible college is a life changing decision and one that is often met by spiritual warfare.

Please pray against any spiritual attacks, and for wisdom and financial provision for us and the students who we trust God will bring our way.

If you know of a recent high school graduate trying to make the all important choice on where to go for college, or anyone else, an aspiring pastor or ministry worker who would like to grow deeper in their relationship with Jesus Christ by studying His Word, the Bible, you can encourage them to apply now, we are accepting applications!

READ MORE here
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follow us on Facebook, MFHBC Tagaytay

We would love to hear from you and be encouraged.
Prov-3-13 captioned

The Parable of the Sower

Jesus Christ taught us all that is important in His word, the Bible. The parable of the sower is a familiar lesson that each of us must take heart to. Let it be a reminder, an exhortation, a revelation to be heeded. It is important enough that the Holy Spirit made sure it is mentioned in three of the four gospels, Matthew 13:3-23, Mark 4:3-20, and Luke 8:5-15.
After-the-clean-up-with-brother-Rudy
Second only to the teaching about the feeding of the five thousand, which is mentioned in all four gospels, the parable of the sower is intricately connected to the Great Commission.

Let us review the passage…this is taken from the Gospel of Mark, ESV

“Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away.

Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.

And He said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear. And when He was alone, those around Him with the twelve asked Him about the parables.
> In this last verse of this section the Lord calls for us to have understanding, of the Spirit, and to pay attention. Mark points out the reality of Jesus’ statement in verse 10, people hear it, but have no understanding.

And He said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, so that “they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand, lest they should turn and be forgiven.”
Isaiah 6:9-10

“And He said to them, ‘Do you not understand this parable? How then will you understand all the parables?

The sower sows the word.
> Jesus gives to us an illustration of a farmer scattering the seed, the Word of God. Not every place (heart) His Word is cast to is prepared to receive it, thus one requires the help of the Holy Spirit to understand the word of God.

And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them.
> The first type of soil is a path or road. A place that has been worn out by foot (vehicular) traffic. Remember, the soil is a condition of a heart. Because it is constantly trampled by the world, there is no chance for it to take root. The adversary of truth, Satan, introduces something that is not God’s truth.

And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away.
> Stony or rocky ground is a heart who hears God’s word, for a moment that person is excited about what they heard, but it does not go down deep into their lives, like the first; it is all on the surface. They endure while it feels good, but don’t make the time to read or study the word of God, that when they are teased about being “a Christian,” or threatened harm for being a “Christian,” they abandon that which they heard.

And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.
> Seeds that fall into thorns hear, or pay attention, and take some action…but they encounter three things: cares of the world (distraction), deceitfulness (delusion) of riches, and desire (longing) for other things. If I seek these things rather than getting to know God in His word, what was sown gets choked (drown, strangle, or pushed out), which leads to an unfruitful life.
Theology
But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”
> Good soil are those who hear the Word (believe), accept it (obey) and bear fruit (evidence in lifestyle). A surrendered life is one that produces the fruit of the Spirit, see Galatians 5:22-25

Where does the Great Commission fit in all this? Jesus says,”Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you
alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen
.” Matthew 28:19-20 KJV

To disciple means to teach. To be a disciple means to learn from our Teacher. He promised, that He will be with us, even to the end. Without the teaching of Jesus in the life of those who have been baptized, how will one grow? 2 Peter 3:18 Selah…think about it.