Teenagers, please be serious about love!

I will go straight forward right now.  Believe me or not, teenagers nowadays are more serious about romantic love than anything else.  Romantic Love!  They know so much about this matter.  They know the feeling of being in love.  The feeling of being heartbroken.  The feeling of being rejected by someone.  The emotions they go through.  They know how to be tough and how to get through with those brokenness.  Not just on the negative side, they also know how to make someone fall in love with them.  They know how to take care of a relationship.  They know how to dig deeper into love.  They know how to fight, to sacrifice, to give up or to give in just for love.  Believe me, teenagers know everything about ROMANTIC LOVE.

You know what I mean.  We are surely surprised by these real facts.  These are true.  THESE ARE REAL EMOTIONS!

The thing is, all of these are real emotions FOR THEM but they have the WRONG PERCEPTION about romantic love.  Let me emphasize, these are real emotions FOR THEM but they have the WRONG PERCEPTION.  They thought that entering into an early relationship is okay. It’s good.  Nothing’s wrong about it because everyone does the same.  EVERYONE DOES THE SAME. Even people who are not in their teenage years anymore have these real emotions but have wrong perception, wrong context. Now that is the concerning matter for me.  This post is actually not just for teenagers who are entering into an early relationship but for those people who we are looking up to.  For those people who we seek advise about this matter.  For those people who we thought have more knowledge about romantic love. This is for those people who they thought know more about this matter.  Those people who  give advise to our teenagers.  (I’m not telling everyone, but most!)

Surely, they know so much things about romantic  love.  But what they do not actually know is, again, teenagers have the real emotions but in the wrong perception.  (Shall I now begin explaining?)  We should be very sensitive about the emotions of our teenagers when giving an advise.  We should also give our truest emotions so that they would also give theirs. Honest conversation, I mean. For example,

“Go on, talk to me.”
The kid starts talking and talking and you start listening and listening. Then you give your advise. The kid says thank you then left. When the kid left, you say,
“Oh teenagers! They don’t know anything about love. They’re just kids.”

I mean, c’mon! That’s why they’re asking for an advise because they don’t know anything.  Even though they’re just kids, their emotions are real so we should, too, be real.

Sometimes, we, adults try to listen, try to give our truest emotions, then we give advise. But then, we give wrong advise because we also have the wrong context about romantic love.
For example,

“I love her so much. I want to fight for this love. I can’t go on without her.”
You start giving true emotions.  Then you give advise.
“Don’t give up! You have to keep on fighting for that love. Even if everyone’s going against your way, keep on fighting. Stand with your emotions. Stand with your decision.”

WHAT?! What are you talking about? We should give advise to teenagers that fighting for an immature love is wrong. We should give real emotions, but our advise should also be real. Our advise should be right. We should teach the right thing.

I will give another scenario.

“I love her. I want to be her boyfriend. But no one’s supporting me and they just keep on telling me that this is wrong.”
“I am not telling you not to listen to them, but you have your own decision. You just have to listen to your heart. Whatever your decision is, I’m here to support you.”

Oh dear, please give a break!
I AM NOT TELLING YOU NOT TO LISTEN TO THEM?
Duh?!
YOU JUST HAVE TO LISTEN TO YOUR HEART?
Duh?!

So now we teach our teenagers to go against doing the right thing.

Dear, brothers and sisters, let us take full responsibility of our thoughts, actions and words. Remember, there are teenagers who are looking up to us. Whatever we do, we say or think, they will surely imitate.  Let us not mislead our teenagers.   Yes, they do have their own decisions, but we shouldn’t be comfortable about that.  Just like us, they, too, are still immature about certain matters, like romantic love.  Maturity is a process.  We don’t land on adulthood and then, automatically we’re mature enough to give advise.  We don’t instantly know what to tell them or to teach them. It is a constant process. That’s why we should be responsible with our actions. Let us direct our teenagers on the better side.  Let us open their minds what true love really is. Let us teach them the value of waiting. Let us teach them to obey their parents, their leaders and those people who are accountable to them.

We should be concerned with our teenagers, but we shouldn’t tolerate them. Please, please, please! Remember this, teenagers have these real emotions, but they have the WRONG PERCEPTION.  That’s why we are here to teach them the right thing to do and to tell them what true love really is.  God bless us all!

So, this is really how it works to be a leader.  One word.  T-O-U-G-H.  One night, I was in distress and was praying to God to give me comfort and the assurance that He’s always with me.  Then He reminded  me of this song,  “Gantimpala Ko by Musikatha”. The chorus part goes on like this…

“BUONG KAGALAKAN IKAW AY AKING PAGLILINGKURAN
NAHIHIRAPAN MAN KAHIT PA NASUSUGATAN
KASANGKAPANIN MO, IKAW ANG TUNAY NA MAY-ARI
NG BUHAY NA ITO, ANUMANG DANASIN
BASTA’T IKAW JESUS, IKAW ANG GANTIMPALA KO!”

There will be really a point in your life where you just need to continue on in serving God despite all those pain, heartaches and brokenness you feel inside.  Yung pagkakataon na nagmiminister ka pero ang sakit-sakit na.  Yung tipong malatang-malata ka na;  pagod na pagod ka na pero ang nagpapagalaw na lang sa katawan mo ay ang iyong tibay ng loob at tanging pananampalataya sa Lord.  Ganoon pala talaga ang maging lingkod ng Diyos lalo na kung leader at maraming matang nakatingin sa’yo; maraming taong umaasa sa’yo.  Kumbaga ang tunay na paglilingkod sa Diyos ay parang pagpiga ng rosas, using your bare hands, upang makuha ang amoy at katas nito.  Kahit gaano man kasakit ang pagpiga sa rosas dahil sa mga tinik na nakakabit dito, kailangan mong magtiis; kailangan mong gawin kasi mayroon kang hangarin.  Iyon ay ang makuha ang katas at halimuyak nito.  Napasakit pero sa bandang huli, makikita at matitikman mo rin ang resulta.  “Basta’t Ikaw Jesus,  Ikaw ang gantimpala ko!”

Matagal kong nang alam at matagal ko na rin naman na nagagawa ang maging selfless kapag ikaw ay isang lingkod ng Diyos.  Pero sa ngayong punto ng aking buhay, mas naliwanagan ako kung paano talaga maisasabuhay ang pagiging selfless.  Napakasakit din.  Dumaraan ka na nga sa isang mabigat na pagsubok; pagod ka na nga sa buhay; naburn-out ka na; dumating na yung depressed days mo pero ang dapat mo parin intindihin at unawain ay ang mga taong nakatingin at nakatingala sa’yo.  Kasi nga leader ka.  Ganoon pala talaga.  Kung may punto sa buhay mo na kailangan mong magpanggap na ayos ka at nananatiling malakas, kailangan mong gawin kasi isa ka sa mga pinagkukunan ng lakas ng mga disciples mo.  Masakit at mahirap.  Kailangan mong ngumiti, mangamusta, umalalay, mang-encourage sa ibang tao kahit na alam mong ikaw mismo ay nangangailangan din ng mga bagay na iyon.  The point of giving up is there already, but then, parang may tali na hihila sa’yo pabalik sa paglilingkod sa Panginoon.  At iyon ay ang mga taong nagtitiwala at umaasa sa’yo; pati na rin ang ministeryo na ipinagkatiwala sa’yo ng Lord.  Yung tipong kapag mag-isa ka na lang, kung anu-anong mga bagay na ang pumapasok sa utak mo, gaya ng, “Ayoko na talaga.  Suko na ‘ko.  Pagod na pagod na ‘ko.  Bahala na sila.”  Pero sa kabila ng mga panlilinlang ng kaaway sa’yo, paniguradong tutulungan ka parin ng Lord para maging masigla ang to keep on moving forward.  You’ll find yourself in the presence of the Holy Spirit telling you, “Marami pang nakatingin sa’yo.  Marami pang umaasa sa’yo.  Paano sila?”  Ganoon pala talaga ang pagiging selfless.  Ikaw parin yung magbibigay ng payo at encouragement sa iba kahit na nangangailangan ka rin.  Sabi nga sa Psalm 30:5b, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.”  Yes, we maybe weak and poor but we have God on our side saying, “Don’t sweat on your weaknesses.  I’m with you.”

I received a text message from our Pastor and it goes on like this, “Being a servant of God is incomparable.  As you care for others, you learn how to cover your sorrows with a smile.  You learn how to stay vigorous despite all the tasks you endure.  You learn how to give hope even though yours is unclearly seen.  You learn how to give strength even at times that you are weak.  No one else will help rather than God.”  Syempre, hindi rin naman tayo hahayaan ng Lord na laging tayo na lang ang nagbibigay.  Dumarating parin yung point na may mga taong nakaaalam ng tunay na kalagayan ng ating puso’t isipan na sila namang magpapalakas ng ating nanghihinang katawan.  They are called “Encouragers.”  They are the people who believe in you, trust in you and they know that you could pass through those life’s difficulties.  Their specialty is to boost your morale and uplift your weary bones.  I’m so glad God gave them to me.  That’s the joy of self-denial.

Nauunawaan ko na talaga ng lubusan.  Magbaon at magbaon ka lang ng Word of God sa’yong puso at kapag susubukin na ng panahonang iyong pananampalataya, you’ll also be able to test the power of His Word then you’ll know how to really apply those God-given promises and encouragements.  Masakit, malubak at talagang puno ng hirap ang pagsunod sa kautusan ng Lord.  Ngunit sa kabila nito, mas mapapatunayan mo ang Kanyang kaluwalhatian at kadakilaan sa iyong buhay.  Sabi nga sa Philippians 3:14, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

Someone once said, “Leadership is the loneliest place in the ministry.”  At first, it maybe true.  But in the long run, what I realized is this, “Leadership is the best place to serve and worship God in the minisrty.”  That’s why we should have the desire to grow.  Kakaibang joy parin ang maidudulot if we suffer as  mature and bold Christians.

Talagang mahirap ang mamuhay sa mundong ito.  Tunay na masakit, malubak at may mabigat na presyong dapat bayaran ang paglilingkod sa Diyos.  Bakit?  Simple lang.  Kasi nga hindi tayo taga-mundo.  Mamamayan kasi tayo ng langit!  Patuloy lang ako at ganoon din sa’yo.  Tuloy lang tayo, kapatid!

A short exhortation that I wrote for our prayer meeting last June 20, 2012. So here it goes…

“Experiencing Breakthrough”
Bible Verses: Judges 2:1, Isaiah 42:3, Matthew 12:20, Numbers 30:2 and James 2:10

“WHAT IS “BREAKTHROUGH?”

Experiencing breakthrough is not an easy matter, especially if we will not ask for the governing power of our Lord Jesus Christ. Besides, only God is able to bring breakthrough into our lives. So, who else are we going to rely on?

Webster’s Dictionary says that “breakthrough” means “an act or point of breaking through an obstruction (obstruct, to block or close up by an obstacle). Breaking through is an act of removing a restriction. You break through if you overcome something in your life.

Everybody wants breakthrough in their lives, right? Everybody wants to be set free from all the troubles they are experiencing. Pain and suffering are simply not on the list. Breakthrough is what we pray for.

“WHO BRINGS BREAKTHROUGH?”

God says in Judges 2:1, “The angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bokim and said, ‘I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land I swore to give to your ancestors.'” Our God let the Israelites experience breakthrough by setting them free from slavery caused by the Egyptians. But then, it doesn’t end there. God is simply not done with them yet. God says, “I will never break my covenant with you.” It means that blessings are continuous. Heavens will be opened to them. They will be continually experiencing God’s overflowing blessings.

Before the Israelites experienced breakthrough from the Egyptians, they experienced pain, sufferings and all other struggles. What does it mean? Just as we are, most of the time, we only remember God and ask for breakthrough when we experience pain, trouble, struggles and suffering or when we are at the verge of giving up. We have the tendency to focus on ourselves rather than drawing near to God first. It is only because of the pain we know that there is the God who is only able to bring comfort to His people and to set them free.

“WHAT SHOULD WE DO TO EXPERIENCE BREAKTHROUGH?”

Let’s read Isaiah 42:3 and also Matthew 12:20. God says, “A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness, he will forth justice.” One characteristic of God that we should always be thankful of is that He trusts us and always and expects much from us. He will bring justice. He will bring hope. He will bring peace. He has put faith in our heart that no matter what happens in our lives, we could still have the courage to trust Him knowing that He’ll rescue us. He will set us free.

The thing we should do is to realize our nothingness before God. Accept that we cannot do anything in this life unless we will call on to God for help. Let us before God with a humble heart, pray, ask the Holy Spirit to come down and encounter Him. Let us encounter the Truth. Let us ask the Holy Spirit to join you as you pray for breakthrough into your life. Have these three things in you heart: faith, love and hope (1 Corinthians 13:13). Sometimes, we just pray by mouth and by mind but with no heart. Useless! Faith is the key.

It reminds me of the song “Breakthrough by Don Moen.” Let us listen to it and pray along with it.

The verse part is the composer’s earnest prayer to God,

“Break through
Break through all my doubts
Break through
Break through all my fears
Break through
That I may worship You
Break through
Break through all my pain
Break through all my guilt and my shame
Break through like only You can do”

He is praying to God for breakthrough. He is earnestly praying. He is in need for God’s power. The chorus part is the composer’s declaration of God’s almighty power,

“You are brighter than my darkest night
Stronger than my toughest fight
Just one touch from You my King my Friend
And I’ll never be the same again”

Maybe, he is simply saying, “My God, this is my prayer. This is the cry of my heart. My declaration. You can do amazing things in my life. I claim it. I believe in You. You can turn my situation all around. To You I cling. I will never be the same again because of You.”

“ARE YOU READY TO EXPERIENCE BREAKTHROUGH?”

You know what, just believe and have a strong faith. Don’t give up and God will never give up on you. God is able to do some breakthrough in your life, in our lives.

We are all bruised reeds that Jesus refuses to give up on. The world thinks it knows what to do with you, break you off and snuff you out! But not Jesus. No matter how deeply bruised you are or put out you may feel today, you’re not beyond the reach of God’s grace. No matter what your situation is. No matter how difficult it is. No matter how hard it may become. It doesn’t matter. God is able to turn your life all around as long as you cling to Him. Come, He will treat you gently. He will make you whole again. You will experience breakthrough! God bless us all!

I wrote this one last year, February 11, 2012. I was just browsing through the pages of my old notebook then I found this. I wrote this when I was experiencing my emotional low or being down sloped. I’m okay now. I’m totally blessed actually. I guess, it is not too late to share this one. God bless us!

“You’re Singing the Wrong Anthem Again!”

Oh boy! I guess I am singing the wrong anthem again. What wrong anthem? I’m not on a flag ceremony. So what’s the use for to think that I am singing the wrong anthem?

Wrong anthem is when you are being off the beat in singing praises and thanksgiving to the Lord. You think you’re still on the melody but then in reality, you’re already not. You think you are still giving your best to the Lord everything you have in terms of physical worship, but when you take a deeper look, your heart is just empty. You think, everything’s already enough. The music inside of you is monotonous. Simply stagnant.

That is somehow a difficult situation. Letting people know that you’re okay and still on track but the truth is, you are seriously broken, wounded, thoughtless, pretending. Those things will surely affect the way you worship the Lord our God. People see you smile and always giving your best to the Lord with the ministry you are called at, but deep inside, something’s wrong.

You are calling on to God for help but it seems you’re unsatisfied. It seems you’re unanswered. You know that there will be answers for your prayers but knowing isn’t enough. You are longing for affirmations, for confirmations. You know what to do. You know what to say. You know what to think. But applying them? Difficult. You’ve reached your limitations. You’ve burnt out. Then what do you need? Second the motions?
“Go for it. I believe in you.”
“Go for it.”
“I second the motions!”
C’mon! I don’t need second the motions. I need real and sincere encouragements. I need a lot of them.

That’s it! I’m humming and humming my needs as if nobody hears me. But then I realized, “I’m singing the wrong anthem that’s why I should stop it. I just need to be still and be amazed by the fact that God hears the cry of my heart. He hears the cry of the broken.”

“Psalm of a Creation”
(January 20, 2013)

The psalm of my heart is to hear Your voice
In my desperation, I choose to trust You
To love You is a feeling incomp’rable
Sadness comes, but my joy is found in You

Amazing to think, as I open my eyes
Miracles are done, angels sing praises
I move toward You, to know You, my King
Every detail of me, I owe to You

In my weakness and poorness, be glorified
Let my nothingness confess Your power
Let me serve my purpose, to proclaim Your Name
To share the Good News to every lost soul

You, O God, exist to proclaim your glory
Your holiness, it brings us to our knees
I am created because of Your mercy
Your grace is enough, it keeps me breathing

To suffer is to experience Your goodness
To mourn is to be glad by Your comfort
I am secured for You’re guiding me always
With my whole being, I will praise you, Lord

Words aren’t enough, You’re indescribable
I will join with Your creation, they’ll sing
Hallelujah! To You, O Majesty
My life be surrendered to You, Lord of hosts

“Trapped”
(January 18, 2013)

I’m afraid of everything
Everything that is so true
So serene, so calm, secrets
Truest of me? It’s unreal!

Thoughts are floating in the air
Feelings are hidden deeply
Actions, they’re always controlled
Limited! Chained by motions.

You’re talking, words just fall down
Just as the air, you’re moving
You’re felt, yet nobody cares
Desperate sounds, no one hears.

Here we are, hear the unvoiced
Young people under pressure
Oh, listen! We are lighted
Yet darkness is upon us.

Darkness, gloom, chaos, free us
Our hearts, broken and shackled
Sep’rated from the real world
Lives with unclear purposes.

Pretension! Life’s a big stage
We laugh, we cry, we get mad
Battling everyone for fame
Competing for attention.

A life cycle of drama
It’s time, we need to end this
Compassion, rise up, be freed
Save the earth, rescue yourself.

Yes! We’re trapped to prepare us
For a fight, yet to unfold
We’re trapped by wrong emotions
Trapped by unsettled motives.

O, my friend! Be freed, be freed.

———————————————-

I’m still working on. I’m not yet so good on writing poems but I’m still working on it. You know, the old saying goes like, “Practice makes perfect.” I’m now interested on it. It’s something different. So, here is my second one. I hope it would sound a lot better and more dramatic than the first one. I love to hear your comments. Criticize it, please!

Naah!  What does it look like if I would write a poem?  How will people react?  I’m not good at writing poems.  I only write essays and short stories.  Other than those, none.  But then I have to.  Our teacher in Literary Criticism told us to submit our own poems then we’ll criticize them.  Oh boy!  What will I write?  Actually, I’ve already written one and I hope it would sound good.  I have no idea about it.  I hope it looks like a real poem, or not!  (I know, it’s amateur) Naah!  I don’t care.  At least I would submit something.  So here it goes.  I want you, guys, to be the first one to read and criticize.  Leave your comments and suggestions below.  PLEASE!  I would be needing them.

——————–

“THE SENSIBILITY”
(August 18, 2011)

Imagination
Fill with emotion
Full of action
And desperation

So classic
Stylistic
Fantastic
Magnific

Too much drama
Just count the babba
To skip reality
Sleep tightly

Sense the ironic
Situation
Life with ballistic
Perception

Imagination
Your own habitation
World defined your own
So alone…

——————

There you have it. My first poem ever. I hope it would not be the last. Does it make sense? You know, your sensibility. Does it have any message? I would love to hear your comments and suggestions. They would really help. Just leave them below. Chow.
(The idea and the background behind the poem, to follow…)