2014 has been a great year for reading. To my surprise, I’ve read 37 books which is more than what I expected to read.
All the underlined and in color red were my favorites:
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage Treader by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis
- The Chronicles of Narnia: The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
- God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life’s Little Detour by Regina Brett
- All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum
- The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
- Para Kay B by Ricky Lee (Re-read)
- The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
- YOUnique: Understanding Others by Understanding You by Jason Lo
- An Enemy Called Average by John Mason
- The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World by Sophia Dembling
- Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
- Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi
- Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Prisoners of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
- Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallow by J.K. Rowling
- From Dirt to Gold: A Journey through Darkness to Light by Tristesse Genevieve
- The Big Guy Upstairs: You, Him and How It All Works by Rob Strong
- The Unicorn Road by Martin Davies
- Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
- Si Amapola sa 65 na Kabanata by Ricky Lee
- The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
- The Sea Monsters by Rick Riordan
- The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan
- The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan
- The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
- Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods by Rick Riordan
- The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom
- Refuel by Ru dela Torre
There were more books I reread but I decided not t include it here. Haha.
Yeah. 2014 was kind of my year of books and reading. But this 2015, I will lessen my reading time and will devote more time on writing.
The holidays are almost over which means rest days are now in the verge of ending. For working adults, busy days are fast approaching. For students, classes will resume in just three days or so.
In these days where everything is fast phase, rest has been a privilege more than a necessity. People hurry everything, forgetting the essential of resting.
Why do we need to rest? Our physical body needs it. Our brain needs it. Our soul needs it. Not resting is like murdering yourself slowly. Stress, fatigue, sickness… name it and you’ll have it if you don’t take rest seriously.
On the 7th day of the creation, God rested. I think that is enough reason why we need to rest. I think even our Great Father needs rest to recharge. Creating a whole universe was I supposed very tiring, stressful maybe, even how much it brings joy to God, it was still stressful enough. And also He asked us to have a Sabbath day when we can’t do any work, a day for only rest.
Life is more enjoyable if we take some time to rest. But don’t forget to also work. God worked in 6 days, He rested on the 7th. Work and rest are the key to a balance life.
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I don’t take “no” for an answer. Why? Because if you can get a “yes,” why settle for a “no?”
But not everything in life is a “yes.” Not everything in life is a fairytale. Sometimes (and for most of us), we are entangled in a world of “no’s.” We all experienced rejections. And the feeling of being rejected is one of the most excuriating pain we may encounter.
There are so many no’s I have endured. And most of the time, I get depressed when things don’t go my own way. But I think God is making me realize how most of the time a single “no” may be a bunch of “yes-es” for another opportunities.
Every closed door is an opening for a beautiful door. Whenever we lose something is an opportunity to get a better thing. When something ended, some extraordinary will start. There’s a bunch of clichés I can quote. But one thing is for sure… God’s “no” is God’s “yes” to another beautiful adventure.
Happy Holidays everybody!
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This generation values self-expression so much that they forget self-control.
Self-expression has been the cry of many young people today. Expressing themselves in different ways. Some blog. Some dress the way they want to get dress. Some use curse words. Some do unbelievable stuff… all because of self-expression.
But if you can see, our world today is in chaos. More people are striving to express themselves that they lose the sense of control. What I am trying to say is, self-expression is becoming too much which is really bad to one’s humanity and spirituality. Too much self-expression may lead to temptations.
We can prevent temptations by controlling ourselves. We can surround ourselves with Godly people, people who will guide us and care for our beings. We can just reject drinking alcohols with our friends. We can just say “NO.”
We sin because we let the enemy master us. Yes, it is fun to express ourselves. But anything that is too much is bad for our beings. Remember what the doctors always say, “Prevention is better than cure.” If we can prevent sin and temptation from happening, why will we wait for it to happen?
We all like to be complete, someone or something to sustain us. We thought by having the worldly things, we will finally see what we are dreading for.
One story struck me the most. The story of a father who makes his son’s life extraordinary. This father has a son with spastic quadriplegia and cerebral palsy. One day, the son told his dad that he wanted to run for a benefit race. However, with the son’s condition, the father felt that it was impossible. Yet, because of his love to his son, he agreed. That day they first ran together with the father pushing the wheelchair where his son was sitting. From that day on, they joined in several marathons, duathlons and triathlons. All for his son, he did everything.
This story of a father who can do everything for his son to sustain the incapability is also our story. Remember the time you just don’t have the strength to move on? Or the time you have done everything you can do but seems not enough? Or the time you just want to give up? There is Someone who make things possible and the reason why we are still alive and choosing to move forward. And that is our Father from above.
He loves us more than we can imagine. He loves us that even we fall down many times, He is willing to lift us up. He loves us that even we lose strength, He is willing to carry us. If you picture how the father in the story carry and push his way to enable his son’s wish to run — the love of God is a trillion times more than that.
Happy weekend everybody! 🙂
Someone oppressed you.
Someone called you a liar.
Someone slapped you in the face.
Someone was angry to you.
Someone has been your enemy.
Once in our lifetime, we came across difficult people. People who maybe a polar opposite. People who maybe has a very similar personality. These people have hurt us in different ways. Some of them became our enemies.
My week’s devotional is all about “loving your enemies.” And so many questions boggled my mind. How can I love my enemy? They became an enemy for a reason. What good will it do to me? I am not a masochist to endure them.
We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
We are different in our own way. We all have positive and negative attitudes. People may judge us whatever we do. But we should always remember this: God’s children are set apart, meaning, we are to love and not hate, because we are more than and beyond this world. When the world hates, we love. When the world hold grudges, we forgive. That’s how God’s children work… All with love! 🙂
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For the record, this is not the biggest trial I had in my life. What I am talking about was the minor operation I had yesterday. The initial finding was benign lymphoma but yesterday it turned out to be a hematoma.
However, it was not the biggest, it still affects me in a whole new level. I feel impaired, cannot function the same as before. But you know what I am thankful about this situation, I realized that this cannot shake me in any way.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” -James 1:2-4
Trials have made me who I am today. Remembering the past trials I had, those always bring a smile in my face. Why? Simply because those trials made me strong and unshakeable.
I also realized that God will not give us any trial that we cannot conquer.
“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” -1 Corinthians 10:13
Remember: Trials should not be feared most especially if you have a big God who’s in control of all.
P.S. Thank you to all people who pray and support me all the way. You are one of the reasons I am strong.
They say health is wealth.
I agree. More than anything else in this physical world, the important thing is to treasure our health. Why? It is hard to live if you are sick. It is hard to do what you ought to do if you are sick. It is hard to be yourself if you are sick.
I remember several times in the past when my asthma attacked. One of those is when in the middle of an important national examination for third year high school students. At first, I felt ashamed because it was very quiet. Everybody was serious in answering the exam. Just imagine how quiet it was and I began coughing. So, the proctor decided to let me go to the clinic because I think I’m disturbing others and because I need to. It was ok with me but then I realized going to the clinic meant lesser time to answer the exam. I went back fast and answered the remaining (not few) questions. Good thing I passed that examination because if not I will be devastated.
Then I came into thinking, how many times should sickness hold me back to realize how essential it is to be in good health? How many important events of my life I should miss because of sickness? How many opportunities should I decline because of my unhealthy living?
Honestly, until now, I am still not taking good care of myself. I do not exercise. The only exercise I do is walking from my home to the office and from the office to my home. I do not eat the right amount of healthy foods. I am always sitting or lying in my bed. This is not a healthy way of living.
I think I should always recite to myself, health is wealth. As I’ve said in the last devotional from Refuel, we should not be lazy. And it is also applicable with this week’s devotional. If we are too lazy to take good care of our physical being, we let opportunity of flourishment pass us by.
Even how cliché it sounds, I will always remind myself that health is wealth.
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I didn’t consider myself a mediocre until the day I realized that there is something more to life than what I know.
Living in this world, it is safe to be in the comforts. It is safe to stay where we are. It is more understandable to live in monotone. It is safe to be safe. But… are we really safe in mediocrity?
When we are average, we tend to be contented with what we know. Isn’t that laziness? We become satisfied to the knowledge we had gained which restrain us to move forward and attain more. In doing this, we discredit the gift of talent given by God.
When we are average, we let the enemy win over us. When we are average, we do average stuff, we do the normal thing to do. That is not good. Because we are called to become beyond normal, beyond what is expected, beyond this world.
Remember: God wants us to excel. Being a mediocre means being lazy to flourish God’s given gift. Being lazy is like giving permit to the enemy to do what it wants to us. And when it happens, we become succumbed by fear.
~A simple reminder from a mediocre trying to unleash her potential by writing. Believing that in writing and sharing God’s word, she will become excellent in the eyes of her Creator.
The lazy man does not roast his game, but a diligent man prizes his possessions (Proverbs 12:27).
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The most boring parts in the Bible are the books of Leviticus and Numbers. Well, this is just my opinion. I mean, why do Moses and the Israelites need to account every name of every tribe of Israel? I know God told them to do that and they were just obliging.
Then it hit me, those names were very important to God since they were His inheritors and so are we. We are His inheritor, His child, His apple of the eye. We are important.
So if ever you are feeling unloved or unworthy or unimportant, remember the time of Moses, God commanded them to account every name of every tribe in Israel. Why? Because He cares so much for them. Likewise, remember that our God has His eyes on us and know us by name.
He Knows My Name by Hillsong
He Knows My Name