Probably some of you are wondering when are we going to marry after seeing my Instagram post last week with Pastor Chico and Tita Maryanne. I knew it! Haha! A lot of my friends asked me too, so I was forced to say the date. Haha! Kidding aside, but really, we just had a fruitful fellowship and mentoring. But I believe that this is more than just a fellowship or mentoring but an answered prayer and God’s confirmation.
I never had an idea of what a family should look like except the kind of family where I grew up. Need nothing to say more and not that I don’t love my family, well in fact, they are one of the best things in this world but sometimes I questioned God why He didn’t let me grow up in a Christian family. I’ve always dreamed of having a Christian family (who wouldn’t want that anyway?) I’ve always imagined what it feels like to have a God centered family.
I had a lot of questions, “what ifs”, running inside my mind. Actually, I’ve been praying for someone who would mentor me about my family since I’ve been praying for them for so many years. I love how Victory would have a seminar about family because I never really have an idea on what a God centered family should look like but never had a chance to attend.
Until one night, God answered my prayer. Pastor Chico himself invited Pau and I for a dinner. The sweetest part of it: they themselves would adjust on our time. It’s a privilege! I almost cannot believe that a Pastor from our Church would invite us like that. Sooooo sweet!
Amazing isn’t, how God hears our prayer and how He pays so much attention to every details, every beat of what our heart says. I feel so precious and loved! It was an honor and a blessing to be invited by them. (I sound so sentimental! Haha!) It was a perfect timing because we’re going through something (
though not about us). I always find myself in admiration in His ways. He is never late nor too early.
The night was about stillness, reassurance and sharing of our testimonies. We were reminded about God’s purpose and promises. What made it amazing is that I have the same experience with Tita Maryanne. Her life was a living testimony of God’s faithfulness. She gave me hope that our God is indeed the same yesterday, today and tomorrow and His faithfulness never fade. He is true to His promises.
We also learned to be patient and to remain still while waiting for God’s go signal. If He didn’t say yes, continue to seek Him more and wait patiently. Sometimes, we tend to complain why we’re going through something but if we know His purpose behind it, we will respond with joy. He didn’t promise that all tings is good but He promised that in all things He works for the good of those who love him, whohave been called according to his purpose. It always good to surround yourself with someone like them. We were so blessed to have this kind of conversation and mentoring with them. Thank God for your life Pastor Chico and Tita Maryanne. You’re the best!
We are HIGHLY FAVORED! Thank you Lord!
Praise to the God of all comfort!!
I had a dream last night. Boyfriend broke up with me just because he doesn’t have time for me anymore. He wants to play and enjoy his life. We did not talk for almost a month. Shockingly, I was calm even though I was broken inside. I asked myself why but found myself in confusion on why I remained calm even things are not happening the way I want it. (Thank God it’s just a dream! HAHA!)
The next thing I know, Pau confronted me after how many days of not talking (still in a dream). He said, “I prayed. I didn’t play. I thought about what happened, what to do. I had my devotion this morning and I feel like sharing this to you. This is the verse in my devotion, ________ Chapter 1:1-5.”
Seconds before I wake up (which I believe it was already an hour in reality), I was talking to God though I can’t remember what He said but He gave me a verse. Something like, “I’m with You.”
I woke up and I prayed. Thank God it’s just a dream! But my eyes were so heavy that I fell asleep again while praying. In my prayer, I can still remember word by word everything that he said to me. I remember the exact word from the verse even though I don’t normally memorize verses in reality. The feeling was the same in my when my dream when I woke up. Everything felt so real!!! I’m not sure exactly what I’ve said but I thank God for comfort. When He whispered another verse in my dream and I was absolutely reassured. The feeling was so light, very refreshing. I was definitely happy and calm. It was the sweetest comfort that I have ever felt. A glimpse of what it feels like to be in heaven, huh?
Come to think of it, we never really fight in person probably because we’re so busy with our own business. Sooo busy that we almost forgot to check each other lately. Then I remember our last conversation about our frustrations in life. Maybe he’s sad or maybe he’s really frustrated? From then on, I was burdened to pray for him.
I recalled the verse when I got home and read my messy notes that I made when I was half-asleep. I remember it now at 2 Corinthians 1:1-2, “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, To the church of God in Corinth, together with all his holy people throughout Achaia: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Still in confusion when I read it.
I read the following verse and it says at verse 3-5, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.”
YEAH!!! It was 2 Corinthians 1:1-5!!! It felt like an electric wave when I read it and felt the need to share it to him. The verse was so mooooooving but I still cannot decipher its meaning. “Why? I don’t feel sad anyway. Am I?”, I said. Then he replied, “I think the verse is for me. I’ll read it before I go to sleep.”
So I read the whole chapter and it goes, “If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.”
A very good reminder not just for me but also for Pau. He maybe struggling or tired with something lately but God comforted and reminded him that everything’s under His control and He just want him to trust Him even more even though things don’t go the way he planned or like it. All along, I thought His message was nothing and the dream was just a dream but I was wrong! God will never do something out of nothing. It was and will never be in vain. He surely has a reason for everything.
Then I remember the verse that God told me seconds before I wake up, “So do not fear, for I AM WITH YOU; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
God talked to me? He talked to me!!! I almost cannot believe it though this is not the first time that I heard His manly and calm voice. Haha! I just can’t stop myself from praising!
Amazing isn’t? How God gives us comfort in the most unexpected manner and how He uses other people to send His message. His ways are higher than us. His thoughts are higher than our thoughts.
We may think that sometimes God doesn’t make sense but He is. And when you finally realize the reason why, you can’t help but be amazed how wonderful and great His ways are.
Amazing waves of Grace
God will never ask you to do something without giving you the ability to do it. You may get passive or complacent and think, “Yes, I know I need to do that. Maybe next week.” Well, next week turns into next month. Next month turns into next year. When we put off what God has told us to do, we miss that season of grace. But, if you’ll deal with things as soon as God brings them to light, you’ll have a special grace, a special empowerment. You’ll feel God’s enabling power helping you to do it.
I admit I’m complacent in almost every part of my life. I realized that I’m afraid to take a chance, scared of rejection. Then I realized that I am missing the very important part of it, His sweetest unlimited grace.
“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. “ – 2 Corinthians 2:19
Is there something you’re putting off? Something you know in heart that you are supposed to do? Don’t let the season of grace pass. Don’t let complacency destroy you. Your destiny stands before you. God has something amazing in your future. Be bold, be strong! Step out in faith, be obedient, and embrace the good things God has in store for you!
A time for Everything
It’s funny how life don’t happen the way we want it sometimes - it’s as if all the things that happen are totally questionable. So sad that it makes your head boggle on why it is that way.
Yesterday was one of the day that I’ve been waiting for my entire life. Wasn’t really expecting that much but I chose to believe that everything’s going to be just fine. To make the long story short, God gave me His biggest NO. It felt like a slap in my face. I couldn’t believe He said no when in fact He knew I’ve been waiting for this for almost a decade already.
“You asked me to do this, I followed You, I did everything You said and now You’re saying NO? That’s unfair! I’ve waited long enough for this and You’re asking me to wait over and over again?”, I said to God. “No, I cannot do this anymore. This is just too much to take.”
Few hours after His NO, I hit a car on my way home. Causing a heavy traffic somewhere in Susana Heights, I breakdown to tears with my best friend. (Thank God she was there with me.) “I failed and now I’m asking my parents to pay the damage that I caused.”The accident made me realize how His NO affected me. Never hit a car for almost 5 years of driving.
I couldn’t get an answer for every questions that I throw. I don’t know how and what to say with all the things that’s happening now. I feel so weak, so weak that I cannot sleep no matter how tired my eyes were. My heart is overwhelmed that it almost forgot what it feels like to beat. It feels so puny to contain all the emotions that I have. It’s the very first time that I ran out of words to pray when in fact I have so many things to say to Him.
“God has made everything fit beautifully in its appropriate time, But He has also placed ignorance in the human heart so that people cannot discover what God has ordained, from the beginning to the endof their lives.” - Ecclesiastes 3:11, a perfect verse that I read when I had my devotion this morning.
We are where God wants us to be at this very moment. Every experience is part of His divine plan. I learned that His timing is everything. Just because things don’t happen when you want them to happen doesn’t mean that you aren’t meant to have those things. Maybe you’re just not meant to have them in that moment.
So I’m learning. Learning to trust Him more and more. Learning to talk to Him and tell Him more about what I want, what I need, what I desire. He doesn’t always answer back with the response I want when I want it but He always answers back. Just because he doesn’t give me what I want when I want it doesn’t mean he doesn’t have plans for me to have it. I have to be patient. He knows better than me, He knows what is best. So Lord I am turning it all over to you. I’m not in control, You are!
God is the Master of time. His plans always take place in the “fullness of the time” (Galatians 4:4). Never a moment too soon or a second too late, but at the appropriate time He brings about His perfect will. Trust your time to God. He is a billion times better than any clock this world invented. God is never in a hurry because He is in control of time.
Saturdate: Vanilla Cupcakes Bakeshop
It was a typical Saturday movie date. That’s what I thought, until he asked me to check this Vanilla Cupcake Bakeshop that he’s been eyeing for a very long time. He read a lot of good reviews about it and found out that it is so much better than Le Petit Cheri where I usually had my “me time” and “study time”. Good news for all the south peeps out there! They have a newly opened branch at Alabang Town Center! Yey!
He said we’ll be having cupcakes for dinner before we watch GI Joe. ￼Cupcakes for dinner? Probably not the best time for that but my mood instantly changed when I saw their doll-house-like interior. It’s super cute and girly!! I want this in my own house! Haha! It was like love at first sight. Too bad I didn’t bring my Dslr to capture it’s real cuteness! (Thank God my S3 can capture good pictures too)
Om em geee!! I would love to stay here forever. I feel like a kid again! They had the most adorable kitchen. I wanna take them home. Cuteness overload!! hahaha.. I cant help myself but smile and take pictures of everything. ￼
The most adorable tea set in town. I want to play with them!
￼Not really a fan of cupcakes but this one is really good. It looks so cute and inviting! I tried the Chocolate Nutella. yes, chocolate + nutella = “i’ll get fat but i dont care ‘cause it’s so good!” hahah! Cupcakes come with a glass of water and a cute Cath Kidston design fork. ￼
Pau tried the famous Red Velvet cupcake and he instantly fell in love with it!! I hate to admit this, but this cupcake beats the nutella. Haha!￼
This place is so stunning! If not for the movie, I would have stayed there all night long.￼Lovely chairs and tables! If only I have a gift of baking, I will build a beautiful bakeshop like this and I’ll name it uhmmm…? Will get back to you on that! hahahah!￼
What can you say with this man? He loves to make surprises! :D￼
A happy woman who turned 10 years old tonight! I’m a happy kid for sure! Tummy filled with yummy cupcakes and heart filled with joy! I love exploring new things with my boyfriend. I really had fun tonight. Thank you!
32nd month: Pyrolympics 2013
It’s been awhile since I last write about this special milestone that we have as a couple. Sounds cheesy I know. Instead of celebrating our 32nd month together, we decided to accompany my sister at the 4th Pyromusical competition at SM Mall of Asia (March 23: Canada and Philippines - closing exhibition) since she haven’t experienced it yet. Actually, she has one gold ticket that her friend gave her and it would be so ‘emo’ of her if she’ll go there alone. Haha! So Pau and I decided to watch with her and we upgraded her ticket to VIP. Haha!We came late because of heavy traffic! We were shocked with the huge amount of crowd that I almost couldn’t breathe while we’re walking. You have to walk like a penguin. It’s like 5x the crowd of last year’s pyrolympics.We’re at the wrong spot to take pictures but we cant complain since we’re late! Hahaha! The show hasn’t started yet but we looked so haggard in the above photo already.I took a couple of fail shots of Canada and Philippines. We definitely fell in love with Canada’s What a wonderful world fireworks display. It was so moving! My sister said “awww.. it’s so pretty i wanna cry..” She also said that watching pyrolympics is a must thing to do after a break up since it’s very therapeutic. haha!I wasn’t really paying attention with the Philippines’ presentation since they’re not included in the competition. The music was off at first (hello gangnam style haha!) but the middle to last part was stunning! They managed to catch my attention. I have underestimated them, im sorry Haha!32nd month? Nothing much has changed except that we love God more than we did before and that what makes our relationship sweeter than ever. Then afer the show, we had our dinner at Bulgogi Brothers and it’s my sister’s first time to eat there as well.To see how my sister enjoyed the show was unexplainable. I guess I missed my role as her sister so I think it’s time to rebuild our friendship better than before. I realized that it was more amusing to do things like this with your family. She’s my best friend and she knows me more than anybody in this world. I’m really blessed to have her!
Fun night indeed!!!!
Cheesiest 25th with my family
I’m blessed that even how busy my parents are, they took this time to take a pause and celebrate my birthday to one of the finest restaurants in Manila, Bistro Filipino by Chef Laudico. My dad and my brother Kuya Jthan had to travel to Thailand 5 hours after our dinner. Good thing, they scheduled their flight the day after my birthday.My mom wanted to celebrate my birthday at Acacia Hotel but we didn’t like the food there and since my sister Julie is working at The Fort, we decided to eat somewhere near her office. My dad is very particular with the food so even if I wanted to eat at French restaurant, I decided to eat at Filipino restaurant with a twist. I’m expecting Bistro Filipino would add a little twist to make my night even sweeter than it was before!They served a star-shaped basket of warm and soft Pan De Sal along with some butter. We were so busy when he served it but my mom liked how light the bread felt on each bite so I tried it too.
I would always asked my Kuya Jthan to order for us when it comes to Filipino Food.Kilawin of the Day. Fresh fish or seafood, calamansi emulsion, roasted capsicum sauce. We love Kilawin so whenever it’s available, we would definitely order for one.I love how good Sisig Baskets is and its presentation. Organic pork sisig in crispy rice basket, quail egg shooter, garlic aioli. It’s one of my favorite.Gambas Flambé. Garlic shrimps, roasted capsicum, hot flaming brandy. Wagyu Salpicao. Kitayama Beef, mushrooms, roasted garlic, potato nest. I should say that appetizers are one of their specialty. They served the best appetizers in town.Soup Sampler. Choose any 3 satisfying soups to sip and savor.
Nilaga Corn Chowder. Wagyu beef broth, corn puree, organic vegetables. Adobo Mushroom Cappuccino. Their best selling signature soup, garlic cream foam, adobo mushroom sauté. Molo Binakol. Organic chicken, coconut juice, molo dumplings, ham
I honestly don’t like the soup for some reason. 3 Kinds of Mangoes. Organic greens and vegetables, bagoong dressing, ripe, green, dried mango, kasuy crusted kesong puti. Mom’s favorite!Crab Rebosado. Beer battered soft shell crabs, crispy vegetables, 3 sauces (shrimp buro, taba ng talangka and coconut curry)Laing Prawns. Chili garlic tiger prawns, spicy coconut curry, laing tempura cake Bulalo Steak. Double cooked Wagyu, Bisto onion gravy, sweet potato croquette, organic vegetables saute Kare Kare. Roasted Wagyu and ox tripe, kare kare sauce, bagoong cream, creamy banana heart wrapped in petchay. Tiger PrawnsKaldereta. Wagyu beef stew, spicy kaldereta sauce, sweet potato croquette, organic vegetables sauteMaja Blanca Cheesecake. Baked cheese cake, sweet corn, coconut cream, polenta cookie crust, muscovado caramel. Birthday song and birthday cake for the nth time. 25th birthday was the longest birthday in my life. If for every cakes I received and candles that I’ve blown will add additional number to my age, I’m probably 35 by now. Haha! I received a lot of cakes and gifts this year. I want you to be happy too! :)
Probably one of the cheesiest year of my life and what I love about my birthday is the complete birthday message from my family. Well, my eldest brother don’t normally send birthday greetings. I almost cried reading it. No, I cried actually. Haha! They’re the sweetest! (Sorry if I have to post your message here. Haha!)I would always choose my family over anything else in this world. I’m not after the gifts. I just want to spend time with them. Birthday with my family is the best!
Happy 25th to myself! :D
Birthday: One of the boys
Accidentally, I celebrated my birthday into two separate group. First is with my victory group (all girls), second is with the boys. It’s Pau’s friends actually. I’ve known them ever since I dated Pau. Well, that’s one thing I love about him. He’s not shy to introduce me to his friends. Haha!I don’t normally spend my day with the boys but I would rather spend this day with them than with anybody else. Though I can’t relate with their conversation about Dota, PBA, NBA and whatever stuff boys talk about, I’ve never felt left behind. Just when I thought I’m over with my scandalous birthday song at Pizza hut with my girls, birthday song at Fridays is still the craziest. I received my 4th birthday cake.The most epic thing that ever happened that night is when we asked for the bill and was very surprised to know that we only need to pay for P900+ for everything that we have ordered. It’s like we eat for free! Discount FTW! Haha!At the end of the day I realized that it’s fun to try something different sometimes. I thought I won’t enjoy it with them but I was wrong. Spending time with them was worth it!
Beyond Blessed: VG Birthday Surprise
“I don’t have much friends.” That’s one fact about my high school and college life. I’m kind of a person who don’t like to hang out with some other people. Though I managed to gain some friends, I lost most of them for some reason. I prefer to be with myself and that’s what makes life boring.
But my life started to become interesting when I decided to join my victory group three years ago. Hesitant and a bit nervous at first since I’m not comfortable in a group and but I took courage to step out of my comfort zone and realized that was one of the best decision I have ever made. Why? Because in my victory group is where I found my true friends.
My journey as a Christian becomes exciting when I decided to follow God and started my own victory group together with my boyfriend. It was aaaahhh. amazing and challenging at the same time. Becoming a disciple and a leader was one of the highlight of my 25 years of existence.Surprisingly, in a span of just two months, the girls in my group keeps on growing and growing in numbers, so we decided to have a cluster to fellowship together. I was expecting more of a get-to-know-each-other setup but I was shocked to know that they all planned to surprise me that day! I have never felt so welcomed and loved that way before specially in a group of friends. I don’t know exactly what to say about it but I was definitely blessed with every girls in that table. From the messages, scrapbook card, to food. I couldn’t ask for more! God indeed answered my prayer when I asked Him to gave me a true friends who will be there for me. He gave me more than what I asked for. Having them as my friend was one of the greatest blessings I have ever received.I would never forget the scandalous birthday song ever. I was so embarrassed and touched when the whole Pizza Hut sang a birthday song for me. It’s the most genuine birthday surprise.I was crying when I read the heartwarming messages from my girls. They don’t know how much it means to me to be treated this way.Perfect gift for a new season of my life as a Christian. Touch Points for Leaders book from Bianca.
To every girls who made an effort to surprise and love me, thank you. I would forever treasure here in my heart the friendship that we had. Because God connects us together. Serving and knowing God with these girls is the sweetest!
Thank you Lord for my friends who help me grow in faith with You. :)
“A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.” Proverbs 17:17
“Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another- and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” – Hebrews 10:25
The Goose Station: Pau’s Birthday Surprise
Most of the girls, I believe, would love to have a date with her love at a romantic restaurant. I always dreamed of that when I was a kid and now that I have experienced it, I don’t know how to put in words to describe everything when my boyfriend surprised me at the award winning restaurant, The Goose Station (owned by Celebrity Chef Couple Rob and Sunshine Pengson)
- Awards: 1. 3rd Best Restaurant and Top 100 in Asia in the 2011-2012 Miele Guide
- Awards:2. Best Newcomer at Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets 2010
Our GPS was not reliable when we’re looking for the exact location of the restaurant. It’s a bit difficult to go there since it’s located at an isolated part in The Fort Bonifacio City, Taguig. But thank God, we arrived 30 minutes early from the expected time.His surprise dinner was different this year though he always do that every time. The whole dinner felt like a proposal. It felt like he deliberately reserved the whole restaurant for us that night and I can feel every eyes paying attention on our every move. It was awkwardly romantic.I was so conscious to the point that I don’t understand what the waiter is saying. Haha!With a minimalist and dimly-lit setup, they can only accommodate up to 20-25 guests so reservation is highly recommended. I should say a perfect place for proposal.
I don’t know anything about the restaurant and what kind of food they offer so I let my boyfriend decide. I know before we got there that he already planned our meal and I’m right! He chose a 10-course meal, Memory. Fine dining at its finest! I realized now why they called it The Goose Station, “Degustation” when they served the 10-course meal. I actually thought he’ll take me at a buffet when he told me to prepare to eat a heavy dinner.
Complimentary bread was served quickly after he ordered. Welcome snack: Foie Gras Cone
It’s creamy foie gras wrapped in a phyllo pastry cone topped with strawberry jelly, hazelnut and micro arugula. It melts heavenly in my mouth. Soooooo good! I want to ask for more since I’m a big fan of Foie Gras but I need to prepare my tummy for a 10-course meal. Lovely presentation!Welcome snack: Tuna tartare and lumpiang hubad atop a kropek, both served on ceramic spoons. It’s just a welcome snack but it was so delicious!
I love how the crew served our food. He makes sure to describe every food that he serve before we eat it.Caviar Parfait. White asparagus flan, crab jelly, yuzu-uni sauce, crab, Avruga caviar. We laughed when he told us not to eat the pebbles because they experienced some guests who tried to eat the pebbles ‘cause they thought it’s edible. Haha!An obsession with asparagus. Terrine of shaved and compressed “olive oil” green asparagus with truffle mushroom flan, sunflower seeds, asparagus ice cream, spheres and swirls, mocha froth. He said they’re too obsessed with asparagus so they came up with this menu. Haha!Green Eggs and Ham. Salad of liquid herbs, pancetta, pickled beetroot puree, mushrooms. Interestingly, the egg was cooked for 1 hour. You better go there to taste it.Roasted Scallop. Fideua negra, morcilla, angulas, anchovy, lemon curd and peppers. My favorite dish of the night aside from our main course. Foie Gras Taho. Foie Gras chawan mushi with Pedro Ximenez sherry reduction and tapioca. At first I thought it was weird but when I tried it, it was okay.24 Hr. Steak. Haricot verts, light jus and smoked mashed potato – “Michael Bras” style. It’s slow-cooked prime short rib, truffle whipped potato, homemade steak sauce, buure schublig, topped with crisp onions. I was so excited to try it that I almost forgot to take a picture. It was literally cooked for 24 hours so expect it to melt in your mouth just like what happened when I first tried it. I will go back to eat it again!Caramel Chocolate. Layers of chocolate, hazelnut docquiose and caramel cream with raspberries – Peter Gilmore’s style. Remember surprisingly red dessert from Red? It was the same. When the crew poured out the caramel cream with raspberries, it melt. He said a lot of guys already used this to propose to their love. Isn’t romantic? Lovely idea!Of course, birthday dinner won’t end without a birthday cake. I was surprised when they served the beautiful cake with a birthday message. Heartwarming and lovely! He knows how to surprise me. I should say I’m blessed that I have a loving partner who loves to make his woman happy and pays attention to every details that would make her special all the time. I still don’t know how to thank him yet but I know he already knew how grateful I am to have him as my partner. So I would just love him more in return because he deserves it more than anybody else. As I was writing this, I cant help but smile as I try to put in words everything that happened that night. If there is a superlative term for blessed, I would definitely used that now. Lord, thank you for all the blessings and for giving me a partner who loves You more than me and who will always put You first before anything else. Nothing makes a relationship sweeter when you put Him at the center of it all. All glory belongs to You!
When you give the right amount of love, you’ll receive the right of love in return. Then later on you’ll realize that what you have received is more than what you give. So you’ll think of giving back the love more than you received, then it became a cycle.