Monday, March 27, 2017

Deeper Faith

Do we long for deeper faith? It's something we probably never really thought of having a longing for.

A deeper faith is something we should desire. With faith, nothing is impossible! Through our faith, we overcome and we have victory in our lives!

Deeper faith for me today is holding on to God's Word that says "by His stripes, we are healed."

I've been coughing and wheezing and snorting and sneezing for several days now and I have not been able to cook for my husband much.

I believe that God wants me to believe without seeing and to already thank Him for my recovery before I actually see it!

To God be the glory! Thank You Lord for my full recovery!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Things We Can Do for Lent

Today I believe God's love nudged me in a strong way.


As I approached Lent, I recalled previous seasons feeling like I flunked it. I would make a lot of resolutions and then I wouldn't be able to do everything I wanted to.


But God in His faithfulness isn't holding a score card. He is truly wonderful and His mercy is without limit.


I went to mass and as I received communion, feeling so unworthy of God's goodness, the Eucharistic minister (unwittingly) gave me 2 Hosts! It has never happened before and the church was packed to overflowing so I'm sure it wasn't for lack of communicants.


I believe God was telling me something. He wanted me to feel welcome and to be reminded that it's not my good deeds that will win me the crown of salvation but only my faith and His grace!


So I am greatly encouraged to begin Lent quite ambitiously. But then one shouldn't boast or else we lose all spiritual benefit!


Suffice to say that I'm going to share some tools so your Lenten journey will be blessed. I will also share with you some inspiration points from my journal.


Let's read up on what the Pope said.  He's a man with so much wisdom and heart!  His simple reflection on Luke 16's parable of the rich man and Lazarus holds precious truths.


Sign up for an online retreat from Dynamic Catholic with do something creative and memorable this Lent!


Sign up for an everyday Lenten reflection from Flocknote.  


Join Creighton university's 2017 online retreat and experience God's grace in our daily lives.









And now for the most awaited portion of my post (oh really now?)... you're getting a sneak peek into my journal.


These are from notes I took during our community's conference.  I'm part of Ang Ligaya ng Panginoon community (The Joy of the Lord) here in the Philippines.  The community has been around since 1975 and I've actually been a member for the most part of my life.  It's truly a place where we see God's face in the love we have for one another.




So... I won't be talking about everything on here, but just 1 or 2 points.


If you're a Christian, then automatically you are also a missionary.  Whether you stay at home and feed 11 cats or find yourself in an airplane more than on land, you are still a missionary.  You're called to bring Christ to the world. 


So even if you can share your faith only on the computer, then do that - because every person needs to know they are SO VERY LOVED by God!  (That's what's meant by participating in social media).







This year, we want to obey God's call to "enlarge our tent".  We want to be channels of faith to the world, not just our own little worlds!

I love the quote from Schindler's List - indeed when we love people, we are able to save them and ourselves too!





Put out into the Deep!  Duc in Altum!  These words have been speaking to me forever!




Sorry my fingers must be tired already.  These pages seem a lot messier than the previous ones, but they still remind me of what's essential - unity!




Some of us get really riled up about politics.  We get to say silly things and ruin relationships.  Let's stand up for what is right but still be loving and respectful of others' opinions.




It's a war out there!  There are forces tugging at us every day!  Let's be grounded in God's Word.  When posting on social media, we should be able to say it face to face.  That's a good guideline.






Holiness seems to be such an unreachable goal.  We were inspired to take that first step and climb the mountains of life to reach holiness!  It's what God wants!  He is an all or nothing God.



So we can!  We can be saints!  Isn't this a perfect thought for the Lenten season?  Let's keep climbing and reaching for the Lord.  He is stretching out His hand to us in love and pulling us up!  He will fight our battles for us, we only have to be still!


Wishing all of you a blessed Ash Wednesday and Lenten season!


Saturday, February 25, 2017

Notebook Craft Project







Got time for a 10-minute craft?


Just recently I got a whole bunch of used paper from the office just to save these from the trash bin.  They were a bunch of bond paper with writings on the back. I also got a bunch of old receipts we no longer needed - without knowing what to do with them.


So I thought maybe there was a way to make them look nicer while they were waiting to be used.



Since I know myself and that I have a weakness for thinking I don't have all the materials I need and buy much too hastily - I purposely looked around the house for stuff I had and then used them for this project.  I suggest you do that too!  It might save you some time and money!


So basically I had all of these around so I didn't need to buy anything!  Weeeee!






MATERIALS:

Burlap
Rope
Paper 
Brads
Paint brush
Paint
Hole Puncher
Scissors


I actually have a paper cutter so that was really nifty to use.  I must say that you don't really need perfectly cut pieces of paper unless you're giving this to someone.  You're recycling!  (excuses excuses)





1.  Cut the paper to the size you want your pages to be!  Silly me, I wasn't able to take a picture of me cutting the burlap but it's similar to cutting the paper anyways except, make it twice as big - as it will cover your whole notebook.






2.  Punch holes for the brads to go through.   I made a notebook and a little notepad so - for the notebook, I made 3 holes and for the notepad, just 1 hole.  You can make as many holes as your dear heart desires.





3. Here comes the most fun part!  Painting!  You can use whatever type of paint lying about.  If you plan to wash this, use fabric paint of course.  I actually used calligraphy ink because I'm going away and it might dry up before I get back.  I don't really know what will the effect be - but at least I didn't have to go out and buy some paint.






4.  Go on and attach everything to everything!





5.  This is how the back looks.  Don't want them to be sticking out that way?  You can glue gun a piece of ribbon or duct tape it (really?) :)




6.  This is the back of the notepad.  The burlap is in front and at the back portion to make it a little bit stronger.






7.  Tadah!  Finished notepad.  That was fast!  For the notebook, I just tied some string to secure (but not really necessary.








I joined the Craft blog parties at Paper Sweeties!  Thanks for hosting y'all!



Monday, February 20, 2017

10 Reasons I am Against the Death Penalty





Dear Reader,


The issue of the death penalty has come up again recently and is presently being debated on at  


10 Reasons I am against the death penalty... (aside from the fact that it is morally wrong to kill someone).


1. If the person was wrongly accused, a reversal of the verdict cannot bring the person back.


2. Studies show the death penalty doesn't reduce the crime rate. U.S. research show that regions with no death penalty have consistently lower homicide rates compared to states with it in place.



3. People with insufficient funds, being unable to get good lawyers can easily be convicted.


4. If we, as a nation approve this bill, our taxes will fund this act, making us co-perpetrators. A quote says it well, "Why do we kill people who kill people to show killing people is wrong?"


5. I don't want to give the government the power to kill people. 

Sorry I still have trust issues.


6. "Imposing a death sentence as a consequence of killing wrongly perpetuates a cycle of violence in our community," said Rev. Rene Robert who worked with criminals with mental health issues and was eventually killed by one of them. He asked that the Governor “take whatever action is necessary” to prevent any person convicted of his murder from being executed. “During my life," he wrote, "I want to feel confident that under no circumstances whatsoever will my death result in the capital punishment of another human being.”



7. Some victims and their families have expressed that healing didn't take place when the criminal was killed and some even experienced regret.


8. "Revenge" isn't a good idea.


9. I believe you can still find God even if you are a hardened criminal and have a changed life (even behind bars).


10. Of course... LIFE is sacred, a gift from God that only God has the right to take.



What do you think about the Death Penalty?


Friday, February 17, 2017

Feathery Friend




"He who fashioned the heart of each,
he who knows all their works." Psalm 33:15


As I was looking out the window today, a bird fluttered by.  The years peeled away and I was taken back to 2006, when I took in a baby bird, close to death and nursed him 49 days to finally "leave the nest" and fly away.  (see below)


Our family named him Squirt and he went everywhere with us.  I taught him how to fly and to look fierce (see video above) so as to ward away predators.  He would perch on our shoulders and eat bananas from our hands.  He was truly a part of the family.


I was suddenly taken back to the porch of our home, telling Squirt to go and live his life. I was afraid that one day, one of the cats living outside our house would catch him.  I couldn't ever live with that memory, so like a mama bird, I told Squirt to fly away.


On a day like today, I'm missing my feathery friend.  He was like a "son" to me.  Despite my lack of sleep checking on him (seeing if he was still alive), and poop ridden bed (covered in brown paper), I would be elated by his progress such as, having a bird batch by himself in the middle of the night.  I did research and found that a bird was an adult once he started "talking". Indeed, Squirt did. He was a talkative one, not chirping, but talking.  You would only know what I mean if you heard a bird talk.


In my heart of hearts I'm wishing that Squirt knew how much I cared about him and miss him.  Sometimes I regret letting him go so fast.  


But I take comfort that whatever love is in our hearts - that we give away - even to the wee creatures of the earth, is never wasted.  God knows all that we do out of love.  He created our hearts with each having the capacity to love greatly.  He knows all that molds and breaks our hearts.


I know not one sparrow falls to the ground without our heavenly father knowing.  He loves each of His creations even more than I love Squirt!  


God knows each of our loves, and never forgets.







Thursday, February 16, 2017

Use What You Have

Sometimes I see a piece of art that just inspires me so much that I want to buy all the materials the artist used to create that piece.

I find myself at the art supply store looking for the exact brush or nib or brand.

Then a bad thing happens, I won't use what I bought!

Has this ever happened to you? Well consider yourself patted on the back if it hasn't.

All too often I buy something and realize I already had something similar.

So, in reminding myself with this graphic to USE WHAT YOU HAVE. Don't go looking for what you don't have - but look at what you already have!

For all you know, you're only meant to use these exact materials to make a piece that is uniquely you!!!

This goes with life too! We may think, "if only I was thinner.." or "smarter" or "more creative". No, use what you have, be who you are (with all the flaws) and what you have will become beautiful! (Or already is!!!)

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Our Greatest Love



I fell in love with a song today and after buying the song sheet online, just had to do some calligraphy! It talks about our greatest Love ever!




O beauty ancient, O beauty so new
Late I have loved Thee and feebly yet do.
Though You were with me I was not with You.
Then You shone Your face and I was blind no more.

My heart searches restlessly and finds no rest 'till it rests in Thee.
o seeker You sought for me.
Your love has found me;
I am taken by Thee.

I sought this world and chased its finer things,
Yet were these not in You, they would not have been.
My ceaseless longing hid the deeper truth,
In all my desiring, I was desiring You.

Lord in my deafness You cried out to me.
I drew my breath and now Your fragrance I breathe
O Fount of Life; You are forever the same;
O Fire of Love; come set me a flame.

(from Prayer of Saint Augustine, song by Ed Conlin, 
composed after he read The Confessions)


Happy Valentines' Day everyone!  May we experience the greatest love we could ever have in this life!


Saturday, February 4, 2017

Begin


Life is short!  Begin to reach for your dreams!  #goals

Calligraphy with a Ballpen




You don't need expensive brush pens or oblique pens with nibs to have fun with calligraphy. All you need is a ball pen! See what any pen or anyone can do with a little practice!



Monday, January 23, 2017

Women's Rights by a Woman



A girl is underage and finds out she is pregnant.  She knows she will face being ostracised by the community and all her plans for the future will be affected by this child.  She is faced with a decision, does she say yes or no?


She said, "be it done unto me according to your Word".  She is Mary, the mother of Jesus.


Now if she said no, we wouldn't have the Saviour of the world now would we?


Suffice to say,  the occurrence of an unwed, underage girl carrying a child isn't new.  But the question is, should the State be able to take the child away if the mother doesn't want the child?  Is the State the author of life?  Is this a matter of a fetus and not a child?


Everyone knows that what they say is just tissue is a child so let's just do away with that silly argument.


We all started small.  It takes 18 days after conception for the heart to beat.  Then, after 10 days, the baby's eyes, ears and tongue are formed.  God probably worked on the baby's sight, taste, hearing and touch first so he could already experience the world around him.  Recent studies show that babies could smell even before he is born.


So a baby has life in his but his mother has the right to do away with him?   Let's look at the right for a minute.


Everyone is exposed to Women's Lib, Women's Studies, Girl Power and all that.  Does getting ahead in life, pursuing your studies, getting a career, getting married first, having others' approval worth killing your own flesh and blood?


What women have a right to is - to know that abortion is not just the death of a child but the death of the mother's spirit.  You will not come out of an abortion unscathed.  Oftentimes, young women are made to think it is a good thing (because our "rights" often are).  They go to Planned Parenthood and they are not dissuaded to go through with it.


The woman says yes to abortion and just like that, it's like she steps into the time of the Judges, 1140 BC when pagan tribes would routinely sacrifice their own children.  Looking back at the story, brings a lesson.  When the Israelites would fall for the pagan practices of these people, they would be defeated by their enemies, subjugated and enslaved.


56 million abortions after Roe vs Wade has led Pope Francis to describe this as a "throwaway culture".  It's a culture of death.  


It's a time to end abortion.





So today is the Day of Prayer for Legal Protection of Unborn Children.  Let's pray as well for the mothers who are making their decision about the child in their womb right now.


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