Wednesday, April 29, 2009

NAKIKITA ng Panginoon ang iyong mga LUHA...

“You have kept record of my days of wandering. You have stored my tears in your bottle and counted each of them.” (Psalm 56:8-CEV)

Marami nang pagkakataong lumuha ako nang todo sa Panginoon. Lumuha ako noong nagkasakit ang aking ama pagkatapos kong magtapos sa haiskul. Lumuha ako noong nagtapos ako sa kolehiyo dahil sa labis na pasasalamat. Lumuha ako noong namatay ang aking lola dahil siya ang naging dahilan kung bakit ako naging pastor ngayon. Lumuha ako habang kami ay kinakasal ng aking kabiyak na si Gigi. Lumuha ako at nagsumbong sa Panginoon nang ilang beses magtangka ang ibang tao na sirain ang aking pagkatao.
There are times we can’t feel the presence of God in our lives. Sa mga panahong iyon, madalas tayong lumuluha. Luha ng lungkot. Luha bunga ng depression. Luha ng saklolo. Luha ng kawalang-pag-asa.

God acknowledges our tears. Anuman ang dahilan ng iyong pagluha, batid iyon ng Panginoon. As David wrote, nasasaksihan iya kung gaanong karaming luha na ang ating nailabas dahil mayroon siyang “record” noon sa langit.

In 2 Kings 20:5-6, Hezekiah wept before God. In response, God extended his life.
Si Jeremias ang tinatawag na “weeping prophet” dahil siya ang tumatangis sa Panginoon upang maligtas ang bayan ng Israel sa lahat ng kapahamakan at sumpa.

In 1 Samuel 1:9-10 Hannah wept because she was childless. God saw her tears and answered her prayer. Umiyak din ang balo ni Nain dahil sa pagkamatay ng kaniyang anak. Nahipo ang puso ng Panginoon kung kaya’t binuhay muli ang kaniyang supling (Lucas 7:11-15).

Umiyak si Pedro nang magsisi siya sa kaniyang pagtatwa sa Panginoon (Mateo 26:75).
Lubos na nalugod ang Panginoon sa babaeng nagbuhos sa kaniyang paa ng mamahaling pabango at naglinis nito sa pamamagitan ng kaniyang mga luha (Lucas 7:36-48).

Marami pa akong luhang ilalabas sa paglipas ng panahon. Pero, OK lang. Dahil alam ko na sa bawat pag-iyak at dalamhati na aking nararamdaman, nakikita iyon ng Panginoon.

HAS GOD SEEN YOUR TEARS? Iiyak mo lang iyan. Nararamdaman ng Diyos ang damdamin mo. Be honest with Him. Nakikita niya ang laman ng iyong puso. He will never leave you nor forsake you.

LET GOD VINDICATE YOU...

Nakakalungkot isipin na may mga pagkakataong mas lumulutang ang kasinungalingan kaysa katotohanan. Mas pinaniniwalaan ng marami ang mandarayang kaisipan kaysa yakapin ang katuwiran. Nagdurusa ang ilan dahil sa maling akusasyon, tsismis at kuwentong barbero.

When we (feel we) are falsely accused, what should be our response?


Foremost, we must search our hearts. Maaring may nagawa o nasabi tayo na hindi natin nalalamang nakasakit sa iba kaya sandamukal na negatibong akusasyon ang ating natatanggap. Ask the Holy Spirit so that He can help in identifying our mistakes. Humingi ng tawad sa Panginoon kung talagang may pagkukulang. Thereafter, rectify the problem using God’s wisdom.


E, paano kung talagang naakusahan ka lamang at naging biktima ng maling tsismis?


That’s the time we should seek God's face for spiritual comfort and wisdom. Psalm 109 provides the answer on how to overcome the issue. Naranasan ni Haring David ang maging biktima ng maling paratang at akusasyon. He writes in Psalm 109:1-5 (GNB)


“I praise you, God; don't remain silent! Wicked people and liars have attacked me. They tell lies about me, and they say evil things about me, attacking me for no reason. They oppose me, even though I love them and have prayed for them. They pay me back evil for good and hatred for love."


Sa kabila ng mga paratang, ano ang ipinalangin ni Haring David? He relied on God for his vindication. In the last verses of Psalm 109 (v. 26-31), David declares, “Help me, O LORD my God; because of your constant love, save me! Make my enemies know that you are the one who saves me. They may curse me, but you will bless me. May my persecutors be defeated, and may I, your servant, be glad. May my enemies be covered with disgrace; may they wear their shame like a robe. I will give loud thanks to the LORD; I will praise him in the assembly of the people, because he defends the poor and saves them from those who condemn them to death."


If you are righteous before God, no one can put you to shame. Let God be your greatest defense lawyer. Hindi mo trabahong maging abogado para sa mga kasong ibinabato sa iyo. If God is with you, He would surely defend and vindicate you.

Parable of the Gossiper

In his remarkable work, "The Book of Jewish Values" Rabbi Joseph Telushkin relates a 19th century Jewish folktale about a man who went about town slandering his rabbi. One day, realizing that many of the things he had said were unfair, he went to the rabbi's home and begged for forgiveness. The rabbi told the man that he would forgive him on one condition: that he go home, take a feather pillow from his house, cut it up and scatter the feathers to the wind. After he had done so, he should then return to the rabbi's house.

Though puzzled by the rabbi's strange request, the man was happy to be let off with so easy a penance. He quickly cut up the pillow, scattered the feathers, and returned to the rabbi.

"Am I now forgiven?" he asked.

"Just one more thing," the rabbi said. "Go now and gather up all the feathers."

"But that's impossible. The wind has already scattered them."

"Precisely," the rabbi answered. "And though you truly wish to correct the evil you have done, it is as impossible to repair the damage done by your words, as it is to recover the feathers."

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

THE PHILIPPINES NEEDS MORAL, NOT TRAPO LEADERS

Puno moral force movement in place

Eight-man group has met twice in 3 weeks

By Norman Bordadora
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines—A Moral Force Movement envisioned by Supreme Court Chief Justice Reynato Puno has taken shape and is set to come up with a criteria on who voters should elect in the 2010 balloting—from president down to the local levels.

Court spokesperson Jose Midas Marquez said Puno had chosen highly respected individuals to make up the movement’s core group and has attended its two meetings over the past three weeks.

The group is composed of Henrietta De Villa, chair of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting; Msgr. Gerardo Santos, executive secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines Episcopal Commission; and Marixi Prieto, chair of the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Also in the group are Methodist Bishop Emerito Nacpil; Retired Gen. Jaime Echeverria, president of the Association of Generals and Flag Officers; former Finance Undersecretary Milwida Guevarra; Far Eastern University law dean Andres Bautista; and Ten Outstanding Students of the Philippines 2008 awardee Noorain Sabdulla.

Philippine Long Distance Telephone chair Manny V. Pangilinan was among those considered to join. But Marquez said that Pangilinan wanted certain issues first clarified. He said the business tycoon supports the movement.

“In essence, they are focusing on the 2010 elections and trying to define what a transformational leader is,” Marquez said.

Puno earlier told law students that transformational leaders induce followers to transcend self-interest for the sake of the organization or the greater whole as against “transactional leaders” who motivate followers by appealing to self-interest.

Moral pariah

Marquez’s announcement came a day after Puno, in the United Methodist Church in Manila’s launch of its own moral force movement, said the Philippines has become a “moral pariah” in the community of nations because of widespread corruption.

Puno said that the country was a “social volcano about to explode.”

“We would like to choose and have elected transformational leaders from the highest post to the lowest post being contested in the forthcoming 2010 elections and the moral force movement would also like to unite all similarly minded organizations,” Marquez said.

He said that the core group in its two meetings was briefed by Jesuit experts and has decided to focus on defining leaders that would bring about transformation in the country.

“It will not be endorsing any specific candidate. It will only give the qualities of the candidates that we need to be elected,” Marquez said.

He said that a technical working group of volunteers has been formed to assist the movement.

“The core group will again meet after Holy Week. In between meetings, a lot of assignments are being given to the technical working group,” Marquez said.

Advocacy vs corruption

Marquez said the movement is Puno’s personal advocacy against corruption. “This is a personal call, a personal crusade of the Chief Justice. It does not involve the court in whatever manner,” he said.

“The judiciary is as much as possible being shielded from this,” he said. Once the movement is in full operation, Marquez said Puno plans to step aside.

He said the group would have its launch sometime in May, a year before the 2010 elections.

“We don’t want it to be identified with the administration nor do we want any of the members identified with the opposition or supportive of either group,” Marquez said.

“So it was really not very easy to get a respected member of the business community who is not allied one way or the other,” he said.

Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita welcomed the movement.

“That serves as a wake-up call for many, especially those serving in government. That’s how we should look at it. We can’t say we’re all clean,” he told reporters at the Mt. Samat Shrine in Bataan province.

Ermita, however, said that rooting out corruption was part of the program of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who has ruled for more than eight years since January 2001.

“All leaders of countries would like to rule under a program of morality,” he said.

Ermita also said that it wasn’t surprising that Puno made such a call, pointing out that having rose through the ranks of the judiciary he was “aware of the causes of anomalies.”

Touchy issue

“Chief Justice Puno knows what to do, and knows why our morality has dipped because of the crimes he has witnessed,” he said.

Corruption has been a touchy issue to the Arroyo administration, which has been rocked by a string of scandals since 2001.

Link: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/nation/view/20090408-198458/Puno-moral-force-movement-in-place (With a report from TJ Burgonio)

Sunday, April 05, 2009

TAMING YOUR TONGUE (Profanities, Swearing and Cussing)

Mayroon kaming kapitbahay noon na ang lutong nang magmura kahit anim na taong gulang pa lamang. Na-develop sa kaniya ang ugaling ito dahil sa laging siyang minumura ng kaniyang magulang. Ganundin ang ilang kaklase ko sa hayskul na sadyang bulaklak na ng kanilang bibig ang pagmumura. Madulas, mura. Makakita ng magandang babae, mura. Kapag nagalit, talagang malutong magmura! Kahit kapag nagbibitiw ng jokes, mura nang mura sa tuwa. Kaya pag-uwi ko sa bahay, ang mga mura niya na minsan ang laman ng utak ko. Nang ako ay tumuntong ng kolehiyo at magtrabaho, ibang level naman ng pagmumura ang naririnig ko-English na!

OK LANG BANG MAGMURA?

Our culture often determines what words can be considered as profanities and vulgar. Malalaman mo na mali ang sinasabi mo kung hindi mo masasabi iyon sa pakikipag-usap sa iyong magulang, amo mo sa trabaho, o sabihin sa broadcast at print media tulad ng diyaryo, telebisyon at radyo. Para naman sa iba, ok lang magmura kasi dapat lamang ilabas ang iyong galit na kalimitang bunga ng pagmumura. Kung hindi magkaka-alta presyon ka at magkakasakit sa puso. Ang pagmumura daw ay isang paraan ng “emotional release”. Vulgar words are considered by many as normal expressions and should never be a big deal.


Sa lahat ng ito, babalikan pa rin natin ang sinabi ng Panginoon---na ang anumang bagay na lumalabas sa ating bibig ay sumasalamin sa kundisyon ng ating puso. Kailangang unahin natin ang pagbabago ng puso kung gusto nating mawawala sa ating mga bibig ang masasamang pananalita. In short, ang mga taong madalas magmura ay yaong may problema ang kundisyon ng puso. As Christians, we should stop telling crude or vulgar words. Kung mga pangit na salita pa rin ang lalabas sa ating bibig, wala tayong pinagkaiba sa mga taong walang takot sa Diyos na parang imburnal ang mga bibig sa dumi ng kanilang pinagsasabi.


KICK THE “OH MY GOD!” HABIT

Kapag tinatawag ang pangalan mo, napapalingon ka ba o wala kang reaksyon? Siyempre, lilingon ka kasi narinig mo ang pangalan mo. Palagay mo, kung sasabihin mo, OH MY GOD!, mapapalingon ba ang Diyos? E, kung sabihin mo sa Kaniya, “Sorry Lord, hindi naman kita tinatawag e!” Kung ganoon, parang niloloko mo lang ang Diyos. Nasasaktan ang puso ng Diyos kung binabanggit natin ang Kaniyang pangalan sa mga bagay na walang kabuluhan. We are cheapening the name of our Creator if we say His name as a mere expression. These words are called profanities which express irreverence to things that are sacred or holy. Dahil sa Siya ay banal, ipinagbabawal Niya ang maling paggamit ng Kaniyang pangalan. Ang Kaniyang pangalan ay ang Kaniyang karangalan. Ito ang pangatlong utos ng Diyos. We must use the name of God with holy fear and reverence.


Kailangang nating iwasan ang maling paggamit ng pangalan ng Diyos. Minsan, ginagamit pa natin ang pangalan ng Diyos sa pangangako sa ating kapwa: Saksi ko ang Diyos, Mamatay man ako, babayaran kita! Minsan sinabi ng Panginoon na huwag na huwag tayong susumpa sa Kaniyang pangalan dahil wala tayong maipagmamalaki. Lumalabas na dinadamay pa natin Siya sa mga pagkakataong hindi natin matutupad ang ating pangako. We should not swear in behalf of His name or His creations. Just say “Yes” or “No” whenever we promise something.


Mayroon din tayong tinatawag na mga “minced oaths” o mga patagong panunumpa sa pangalan ng Diyos. Minced oaths are corrupted forms of (usually religion-related) swear words that originally arose in English culture sometime before the Victorian Age. Ang mga salitang ito ay mga tagong pagmumura na ginamit noon sa Great Britain upang hindi mahalata ng mga makapangyarihan ang mga pangit na pananalita. May parusa kasi sa mga taong sumusumpa sa pangalan ng Diyos. Madalas natin itong maririnig sa mga pelikula, radyo at telebisyon, pero hindi na pinapansin ng marami. Ilan lamang sa mga ito ay ang sumusunod:



  • By golly = By God's body
  • By gosh = By God
  • My gosh = My God
  • Chrissakes = For Christ's sake
  • Darn = Damn (hell)
  • For crying out loud = For Christ's sake
  • Gee = Jesus or Jerusalem
  • Geez = Jesus
  • Gee whizz = Jesus
  • Good grief = Good God
  • Goodness gracious = Good God
  • Gosh = God
  • Heck = Hell
  • Jeepers Creepers = Jesus Christ
  • Jeez = Jesus
  • My goodness = My God
  • Susmaryosep = Jesus, Maria, Jose


The Bible declares that the name Jesus is above every name. It should be respected and revered. Hindi natin dapat ginagawang simpleng “emotional expression” ang pangalan ng Panginoon kung nabibigla, nagugulat o kaya naman ay wala nang maisip sabihin. Malinaw ang pamantayan ng Panginoon. Kailangang iwasan natin ang mga usapan at pananalitang walang kabuluhan. Kasama ito sa tinutukoy ni Pablo na mga birong hindi nararapat. Profanities do not not please God in any way.


SPEAK BLESSINGS, NOT CURSES


Our lips should speak blessings, not curses or cusses. Kapag galit tayo, madaling sabihin sa kaaway natin, “Masagasaan ka sana ng ten-wheeler truck!” Matalisod ka sana at mahulog sa imburnal! Hindi ito nakalulugod sa Diyos. Hindi tayo dapat nagsasabi ng masasamang bagay sa ating kapwa. Romans 12:14 declares that we should ask God to bless those who persecute us, ask Him to bless, not curse them.


Kahit sinisira ng mga maling impormasyon ang ating reputasyon, umasa tayong ipagtatanggol tayo ng Panginoon. Just like David who was once a victim of false accusations, believe that God will vindicate us. Siya ang magtatanggol sa atin sa bandang huli. Kung mayroon mang mga taong nag-iimbento ng mga akusasyon laban sa atin dahil sa ating pagiging Cristiano, matuwa tayo dahil sa napapatunayan natin sa ating sarili na tayo ay talagang mga anak ng Diyos. Wala na dapat sa bokabularyo natin ang paghihiganti. Hindi natin dapat ginagantihan ng masama ang mga taong gumagawa sa atin ng masama. We must always overcome evil with good.


Hindi lamang tayo nakapagsasabi ng sumpa sa ating kapwa. Nakapagsasalita din tayo ng mga sumpa sa ating buhay. Iyong tayo ang may kagagawan. Mga salitang nagbibigay sa atin ng problema. Kapag sinabi mong, “Bobo ako. Hindi na ako gagaling kahit kailan sa Math”, maaring bumagsak ka nga sa Math exam mo kahit hindi ka bobo. Kailangang bawiin natin ang lahat ng mga masasamang bagay na sinabi natin sa ating kapwa at ating sarili. God does not want us to suffer from curses. It is his will for us to live in blessings and good life.


Our words should be used not to tear down but to build-up. Huwag na huwag gagamitin ang pananalita para manakit ng kapwa. Our speech should always be pleasant and interesting. We should not use harmful words but only helpful words that could build us up and other people’s lives. Let no unwholesome words or worthless talk come from our mouth, but only those which are beneficial and would be blessings to those who will hear it.

ANO BA TALAGA ANG "CALLING" KO?

Lagi kong naririnig iyan sa mga kabataang kaga-graduate lang sa kolehiyo at mga young professionals na nababagot sa buhay. Nagtatanong si...