God’s Encouragement For You!

rsz_1mbp_pinkNovember officially starts and this gets everyone counting the days till Christmas. First November weekend was family weekend. For us, November 1 and 2 meant spending time with things that last, meeting up with my hubby’s and my extended families. It also meant playing all the games we can play with the kids while we are off work. We have nothing against trick or treats but my kiddos and I have also opted to spend the weekend with bringing home chicks (which never stop chirping!), go to the movies, all while taking the time to celebrate the life and blessings of one great woman I look up to (Ate Pazee!) and visit one of our favorite newly-weds at their new home. Yep, creating late night visit traditions to all our wedding inaanaks (will get to everyone on the list soonest). May seem trivial to most but these are what make up fabulous weekends for this working blogger mom. Loving my job so much but I love it even more when it creates opportunities for me to balance life outside of work (Number 1 Telstra advocate here, thanks to the fabulous Assurance Team!). Just as I have completed my me-time for the week (thanks to my handsome hubby for me-time-budgets, wink wink!), I got creative and used our own gallery of pictures to share God’s encouragement to all my readers. Read along and feel free to let me know which encouragement you are most thankful to God for.

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You may be wrapping too many gifts this Christmas and will surely receive several, too, but the greatest gifts we have received are those that do not come wrapped in boxes. We have God to thank for answered prayers, kiddos milestones for the year and of course, the lessons learned from 2015.
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May seem like nothing is happening with the things you are believing God for, but God is never late and never too early. Look back at 2015 by end of December and you will realize you do not have enough space to write on the countless blessings you and your family have received for the year!
My youngest David on his first picture, wrapped in blanket from the Nursery.  Points me to the fact that our children have a great future ahead that God has planned even before we give birth to them!
My youngest David on his first picture, wrapped in blanket from the Nursery. Points me to the fact that our children have a great future ahead that God has planned even before we have given birth to them!
flowers from my husband - thankful for the gift of marriage, friendships, work, kids, and yes, even for the things that did not go the way we planned them to be. God is a purposeful God who keeps us safe in the shelter of His own embrace.
flowers from my husband – thankful for the gift of marriage, friendships, work, kids, and yes, even for the things that did not go the way we planned them to be. God is a purposeful God who keeps us safe in the shelter of His own embrace.
At the end of the day, whatever we focus on will define everything in life. What we focus on will define our future destination. At the end of the day, our strongest display of our hearts are never our words, never our pictures or never the size of our followings, but it is going to be our own kids, our marriage, our homes and our relationships.
At the end of the day, whatever we focus on will define everything in life. What we focus on will define our future destination. At the end of the day, our strongest display of our hearts are never our words, never our pictures or never the size of our followings, but it is going to be our own kids, our marriage, our homes and our relationships. It is God who will take you away from unnecessary distractions and unwanted influences. Never miss to count the blessings around you.
Our smiles are an extension of our joy at home, our vigor at work and our assurance from God. Be generous with your smile and never consider yourself better than others. Celebrate each other and ask each day why did I do the things I did today? And if the answers point us to anything other than our primary priorities (God, family and our calling), calibrate with God and never miss the chance of letting go of unnecessary roles you may be playing.
Our smiles are an extension of our joy at home, our vigor at work and our assurance from God. Be generous with your smile and never consider yourself better than others. Celebrate each other and ask each day why did I do the things I did today? And if the answers point us to anything other than our primary priorities (God, family and our calling), calibrate with God and never miss the chance of letting go of unnecessary roles you may be playing.
Recently changed directions? Do not fret because you may be in the brink of a breakthrough. Life's delay does not mean failure, it can mean fruitful waiting time we can spend in joyful worship. Remember that there were survivors of 911 who had to be late for the day (one stopped for doughnuts for his turn to buy breakfast in the office, the other one had to stop to buy bandages for his sore feet, and then there was the other one who was caught in traffic).  You just don't know what greater things God may be preparing you for.
Recently changed directions? Do not fret because you may be in the brink of a breakthrough. Life’s delay does not mean failure, it can mean fruitful waiting time we can spend in joyful worship. Remember that there were survivors of 911 who had to be late for the day (one stopped for doughnuts for his turn to buy breakfast in the office, the other one had to stop to buy bandages for his sore feet, and then there was the other one who was caught in traffic). You just don’t know what greater things God may be preparing you for.
write from your own heart, hear from  your conversations with God, and it will quiet your fears and it will grant you 200% peace to be joyful at all times.
write from your own heart, hear from your conversations with God, and it will quiet your fears and it will grant you 200% peace to be joyful at all times.

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Life in Pictures : Writing on Me-Time Mornings

rsz_1mbp_pinkIn just a few weeks, we will now be ushering in the ‘ber’ months, if you are like any Filipina mom I know, we all get giddy and excited around what the ‘ber’ months bring, cooler days, family celebrations, reunions, more holidays to bond with kids. Before we welcome September, let me share with you several scenes from my working-mommy-world.

Work Shoes

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My roster of work shoes is a reflection of my season in life. It is a mix of footwear that can take me from posh events to roughing it out with kids to errands days. Mommies, look around the shoes you wear and thank God not for the shoes, but what you wear them for.

Faith Matters

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I have learned to appreciate how God has enriched culture, a culture that stretches out and gets reflected on families, how you decorate your house, how you celebrate with friendships. I am also passionate about faith and it is critical to have both culture and faith aligned with what the Bible calls as truth. Thanking God for taking me to places whose culture and faith are different from mine, tugs at your heart to have the passion to know what to pray for. Opens your eyes from what you want to be thankful for and opens your doors to friendships that allow you to share a kind of peace that can be present even in the midst of being different.

Leaving Footprints

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20150821_091932-1There was this pocket restaurant near Mekong River in Laos that provides an entire wall for any visitor to leave notes. More than just looking at the wall full of notes, brings me to the walls in my workplace that tells everyone what we want to be famous for. As wives and moms, what notes do we want to leave behind and what do we want to be famous for?

View from the Boardroom

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Boardrooms have a way of limiting your views. It is so easy to see yourself as just an integral part of the boardroom, blurring everything else that you need to play as your role. It blurs away your urgent need to go home to complete homeschooling for your kids, or blurs away the weather outside, or blurs away the excessive time you spend in the boardroom. I especially like the boardrooms that gives you the real view outside. It reminds you about the real reasons why you work, the real reasons why you want to excel and reminds you about the beauty of what God surrounds you with as you work, as you play mom, as you play wife.

Kids’ Imprint Everywhere

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Of course, I forever thank God for my boys and mini-me at home. It helps grow me, give me more than enough reasons to be happy, and gives you a reason to get up each morning. Brings you back and clues you in to what makes their world turn. Gives you laughter days, rough it out in play days and even travel days!

Holding Hands While Driving

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I married a man who hears from God, fully trusting his leadership in the family and in our marriage. I am sure that no matter how brilliant my ideas to lead are, the role to be both a mom and dad for my family is something that I have not been wired to play, my big God will always have a way of telling my husband how to lead, without me taking away his role to lead in the family. This is not meant to discount what great things God has been doing for single moms. Thanking God for being the purposeful and Sovereign God who is a personal God of perfect timing, aligned with our seasons and roles in life. So let there just be one driver in the car, but feel free to hold his hand, and squeeze it with love and a wink or smile anytime.

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What I Thank God About For the Father of My Kids

I grew up with the best dad in the world, the best dad who would take the time to take me to my first day high school, who encouraged me to be at my best at all times, who lovingly has always told me that I can sing (even if I can’t, *wink*). And so it is truly a big blessing to have met an equally kind and loving husband who does the same now for my kids. Look at what I have been meaning to write all week, below I listed just some of the things we appreciate about the dad in our house.

dadkyleThank you for childhood memories – You’ve climbed up trees with the kids, taught the boys how to swim, took them to laser tag games, joined them for Me and My Dad camps, showed up and presented for school’s “What Does my Dad do at Work”, helped build lasting memories of visiting new places, exploring beaches, and showing everyone (including myself) that it is fun and easy to travel with kids.

dadgabThank you for date days with each of the kids – Thanks for always being handy to help with Math homeworks, getting them involved with dad stuff in the house (e.g. carpentry, car wash, etc), for involving them with what you do, for playing with them, for pushing to have at least three dinners at home with the kids each week. Big thanks for showing us that being a dad means being there for them when they are ready to talk about their days.

dadsofiaThank you for taking care of the girls in the house – Thanks for showing Sofia what her identity is through the love you show me, thanks for sleeping with her and sharing things that are exclusive to just Sofie and Dad, thanks for sharing the breakfast table with the kids. Thanking God because you are not afraid to ask for a kiss or to say ‘I love you’ and ‘sorry’ to kids.

daddavidThank you for being the leader in the house – Thanks for leading us at all times how it is to love God, to wake up early and open your Bible. Thanks for opening the house to people who help us train our kids with the way they should go, for always surrounding us with people who have Godly counsel, for being a dad to other kids, for being a great and loving son yourself.  Thank you for fathering others that are never dependent with what you do, Kids teachers, Coordinator family, Amazing sisterhood and brotherhood of travelling redundance (longest group name, ever), Nova and SJDM. Ultimately, thank you for making your family your first ministry.

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dadcollageHappy fathers’ day to all the dads! Watch our fathers’ day greeting here.

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What I Learned from John Feir of Pepito Manaloto

rsz_1mbp_pinkPepito Manaloto is a Philippine TV show that showcases the life of Pepito, a Lottery winner. It is a story of rags to riches that aims to entertain, inform or inspire, and has now evolved into a show that depicts sound Filipino culture. In fact, it still has its trademark snippets of culture know-how (e.g. how to save, how to invest, etc). Visited the taping location and got to spend time with its home-grown comedian John Feir and I just have to share lessons we all learned from it.

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Live life simple – didn’t realize that for a comedian who has the means to buy all the top-brand cars, John Feir chooses to ride his bike daily. Yep, you heard it right, he rides his bike daily from his house to the taping location. I am sure it wasn’t because he has to, but because it is a choice he has to make. Sends a very strong message of choosing to focus and spend time, money and energy on things that last.

pepito1Living a life of joy – it only takes a minute or two before anyone realizes that John Feir is a man of both humor and joy. I am pretty sure it is not coming from whatever he does as a living, that joy is evidently displayed as soon as he greeted us and shared stories about his last visit to Laos. It was punchline after another. He went on saying his mom’s name is Anne Feir (unfair), his dad Rene Feir (repaired), and his aunt who happens to be tall Cheri Feir (Cherifer). Be ready for a laugh when he is around.

pepito3 pepito4Focusing on things that last – So when it was time to take things seriously and talk about taking the Gospel to the field, that is when you see the serious side of John. Kyle’s whole experience itself brought encouragement, faith and growth to him. John Feir is more than just a character from Pepito Manaloto. In our eyes, he has become someone who knows when to throw in a punchline and when to look at things that last with eyes of sincerity, passion and commitment.

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Thanks for sharing your time with us, John Feir.

Welcome Pepito Manaloto into your home every Sunday after 24 Oras Weekend.  – See more at: GMA network

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Yes, joyful are those who live like this! Joyful indeed are those whose God is the LORD. Psalm 144:15

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Working Moms, There is a God who Answers Prayers!

Capped off the week at work with celebrating International Women’s Day. Thanking God to be part of a company that celebrates women and everything that is about women. It was a sea of pink when both men and women from my workplace came in clothed in pink. It is a blessing to have fun at work. This is what makes work not seem like work. Twelve years of marriage and four kids after, it was a journey of ups and downs, challenges and answered prayers, failures and successes. Over the years, God has remained faithful and always has a way of surprising us with good news, all at the right time. As a family, we keep jar of answered prayers we get to refill at the end of each year. My big kids get to write their answered prayers for each year, while my two small kids get to draw them or anything that represents their answered prayers. Come to think of it, I do not need to wait until end of year, listing down my blessings now. Mom friends, read up and thank God for the blessings that can always come your way.

#ThankYouLordforGodlyHusbands

One of the biggest blessings I continually thank God for is a husband who loves God more than He loves anything in this world. This has allowed me to have a husband who stands up in leadership especially at home. My husband works as a full time pastor (now training to be a church planter), a husband who is not defined by what he does but considers family as his first ministry. Someone who is able to do the things he has his hands on, because it is God who empowers him to do so. Part of the blessing I thank God for my husband is the fact that he supports me, encourages me, speaks to my life, and is on a lifelong project of outdoing each other’s love. More than anything, I appreciate having a husband who does not keep a scorecard of misses versus wins, but always acts out of love, patience and understanding.  Most of our best dates are spent dreaming and praying about what we will do as we grow old together.

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Working Mom Perks from Husband: weekly dates, bestfriend, adventure buddy, dream/prayer partner, surprise sweet calls on a busy workday, faith/encouragement advocate.

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up…Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm…Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NIV)

#ThankYouLordforFourKids

Countless times when I look at my kids and then I start wondering how God has equipped my kids to become who they are now. We did the same parenting to all four kids and surrounded them with the same angels (family and friends) but God continues to amaze us as they grow up uniquely different from each other. At their young age, they reflect to be confident kids and we continue to celebrate small and big milestones such as the first time Sofia has learned to order food for herself at a fast food chain (something I was unable to do until I got to high school!). The greatest blessing about kids is the gift of good health and them knowing that life is never about winning but always about doing your best at all times. More than celebrating the medals, we celebrate when the kids are able to give their best, be happy for the winners when they lose and believe God for more successes and opportunities in the future.

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Working Mom Perks from Kids: little hands and welcome kisses on face, countless school stories, movie buddies, cuddle and squeeze time, trying to fit in one bed on Saturday nights

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate. (Psalms 127:3-5 ESV)

#ThankYouLordforMeTime

Friends are my accomplices for my Me-Time. It can be as simple as a white choco mocha from a coffee shop or a good read just before bedtime. Working moms may always have their switches ‘on’ but it helps to get refreshing and recharging. Do what works for your passion. Hobbies are also welcome such as baking, photography or sewing. I know of a mom who would paint her own nails (I do, too!) or take long hot baths right after a tough work day. There is nothing that a convo with hubby and kids over food or drinks cannot make better. Try a trip to the bookstore with kids. Whether or not you find it weird, staying with kids at home over weekends with nothing planned is just the best fix after a work week for me.

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Working Mom Perks from Friends: trying out new restaurants, spa trips, book and magazine exchange, driving to late night visits to friends’ homes and getting lovely late night visits at our home

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. (Hebrews 10:24, 25)

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