Abbie and the Muffin

I was not able to update this site for a long time now. My last post talks about the coming of our first baby. Abbie is now 8 months old. Here is how we bond with each other and have fun:

I hope you enjoyed watching the video as much as I enjoyed producing it.

Djamezalvaro

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Transition

4 seasonsEverything in this world is temporary. Nothing is ever permanent. Nothing stays as they are. Everything is transitory. I first heard of this in an exposition of the Book of Ecclesiastes but have never fully appreciated its truth up until now. It is amazing how my two previous posts here speak about transition; about me giving up something and moving on. It has been almost a year now since my last post and, mind you, so much has occurred in that short a span of time. I left my job, found a new one, got married and now I am facing two great things, two great changes. I am excited, and at the same time having some reservations. I am happy and at the same time hesitant.

A new endeavor is on its way, and while it is brimming with promises, I cannot help but be hesitant at how fast the pace it took to happen. Let me tell you that this is something BIG… very BIG, so big that it is sometimes surreal to think about it. So big so that I often catch myself wondering if it will truly be a success.  That is not to say I doubt it to be, it’s just that it seems unreal and yet… it is real.

Another thing is that our baby is on its way, I am excited and happy about this. But, at the same time, I am also a bit tentative. I often find myself wondering what kind of a father I would turn out to be. There are ideals I have already set on my own. Still, I feel unequipped. Well, there is always a first time. I’d like to call it my “first timer’s jitters”; if there is anything of that sort.

Everything in this world is temporary. Nothing is ever permanent. Nothing stays as they are. Everything is transitory. If there is anything in this truth that I’d like to keep to guide me, it is the fact that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. This means that I cannot be too proud of my accomplishments because they are temporary, nor can I be drowned in my failures as they are transitory; instead I can only be thankful and trusting to Him who is the only constant in this life…

The Leaf

A young plant sprouted in our backyard one morning. It came shooting up, full of energy, full of promises.

Out of its tiny branches, twenty two young, green leaves sprung up. They too were full of energy and very expectant of the young plant’s promises.

Of the twenty two, I noticed one leaf bigger than the others. Clinging to the branch in the hope that the young plant’s promise that it would grow and he would be lifted up in its branches. To dance in the gentle breeze and to see the world from above.

Along came the winds, and the rain. Like every others in our yard that were subjected to the elements, that young plant lost some of its leaves. They fell off and got carried by the wind, unable to experience what the young plant has to offer, what the young plant has promised.

And now, almost two years have passed since that day the young plant sprouted.  It has grown, larger than it has ever been and still promising to grow bigger.

I looked and found that the big leaf is still there. Of the twenty two that first grew on the plant’s branches, seven remained. All the others have long gone. But these seven have been faithful.

I looked up and realized that the plant has lifted so many younger leaves. They have danced in the gentle breeze and have seen the world from way up. I looked again and realized that the big leaf seems to be looking down now. As if contemplating whether to cling on and wither on the branch in hope of the plant’s promise or to let go and be carried away into a totally different journey.

There is no denying the faithfulness the seven has shown to the plant and to its promise. I wonder… have the plant been faithful to them in return…or has forgotten about them altogether.  I wonder…

Me, the Hooker and the Tricycle Driver

8: 00 PM, Friday, March 30, 2012

I went off to work an hour earlier than usual because I need to drop by an ATM and grab my salary. The driver of the tricycle I was riding picked up a hooker who was, like me, on her way to work.

It was a little bit surprising. The driver hesitantly asked where she is going and, in response, the hooker shyly told him “Disco Rama”.

From where we are at this point, Disco Rama is just straight ahead, about 5 or 6 blocks away. Still, the driver gave it a little thought before agreeing to take her in.

As soon as she got down from the tricycle, the sweet, almost intoxicating scent that has enveloped us three lifted. Then the driver, as if waking up from a trance, looked at the slowly walking figure of the hooker and asked no one in particular:

“Can we really blame her?”

As if changing his mind, he said:

“Well, that’s a choice she took. I bet even if you threaten her with a knife she won’t do laundry of other people for a living.”

This experience reminded me of an older post I put up here. Our life is filled with decisions to make and choices to take. We live and die by the choices we take every day. We are labeled and defined by the decisions we make.

Sunday Reflections: Today is Mine

A church mate sung this hymn last Sunday:

Today Is Mine
Recorded by Slim Whitman
Written by Blanche Kerr Brock and Virgil P. Brock

Today is mine tomorrow may not come
I may not see the rising of the sun
When evening falls my work may all be done
Today is mine tomorrow may not come

Today is mine to sing a joyful song
Its notes may cheer some wanderer in the throng
His steps may falter while my own are strong
Today is mine to sing a joyful song

Yes today is mine tomorrow may not come
I may not see the rising of the sun
When evening falls my work may all be done
Yes today is mine tomorrow may not come

Today is mine tomorrow may not come
My race of life may end at set of sun
Shall I then hear the Master say well done
Today is mine tomorrow may not come

With youth we always neglect this truth. Too often, we think we are invincible, that our strength would never fail us. But the truth is, our life is nothing more than a mist which is here now and a moment later will be gone.

Like the Psalmist said:

“As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.” (Psalm 103 15-16 KJV)

As I was listening to the song, I was led to ask the same question:

Today is mine tomorrow may not come… My race of life may end at set of sun… Shall I then hear the Master say well done?

Life as Seen Through a Mayonnaise Jar

I know this story may seem common but I just think it’s worth sharing.

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Mayonnaise Jar and the Golf BallsA professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and preceded to f…ill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous “yes.”

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

“Now,” said the professor, as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things-your God, family, your children, your health, your friends, and your favorite passions-things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, and your car. The sand is everything else-the small stuff.”

“If you put the sand into the jar first,” he continued, “there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.”

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.

The professor smiled. “I’m glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.”

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar… and the coffee…

A glimpse into a man's thoughts. A tribute to a boy's imagination