Trusting through…

The clock is about to strike September 5, 2017 in a few minutes now.

Few weeks ago, I was very frustrated, anxious and nervous at the same time.

Frustrated how things are not going the way I’ve planned out.

Anxious with how I can cope up with all the sudden changes that has been happening.

Nervous to how it will turn out for me come September 5.

I was in a mental, emotional and spiritual wreck. I thought I would just blow up just thinking about so many things at that time.

I found myself wishing September 5 would just come in a flash so I don’t have to go through the turmoil of waiting and waiting and waiting how another day would unfold leading to this day I was dreading.

I just wanted to get over and done with. “Lord, just let me know if I would make it or not!” That was my selfish prayer.

I’m grateful that God surrounded me with friends who would speak faith and pray for me ever so lovingly.

Blessed to have a gracious God who doesn’t answer me the way I want to but answer me in love, I felt Him tugging my heart and leading me to hear from Him even with my self-absorbed heart.

“You can enjoy this.”

I think I didn’t hear Him right. Enjoy? What?

“Yes, you can enjoy because you’ll get to know me more as you go through it.”

Have I told you I am blessed by how gracious God is?

Now I get the cliche “TRUST THE PROCESS.”

I have to repent with how unbelieving I was that He is present in the process, His grace is sufficient for me to go through the process, His power will enable to be victorious after the process.

Bishop Juray Mora said in one of our classes that the place between believing and receiving is called place of faith.

A place where your faith can grow.
A place where your faith can lead you to receive your miracle.
A place where your faith can show you how the impossible be made impossible.

But I realized it’s also a place where your faith will be tested, put into the fire and stretched.

Few weeks ago was the place where I had to surrender my faith, or rather the lack of it and ask Jesus again, Lord help me overcome my unbelief and give me faith.

It’s now officially September 5, 2017. The testing was tough. The stretching was painful.

But it was all worth it.

I’ve received my prayer. It eventually turned out well. The miracle happened. The impossible became possible for me.

Yet more than this, I am so much more grateful that God indeed revealed Himself more as I went through these past weeks of faith building, molding, stretching journey.

I’ve learned to depend on Him more and not my own strength.

I’ve come to behold more how wonderful His grace is. I receive not because I deserve. I receive because He is a loving Father. I receive only through Jesus.

I’ve come to praise Him not because the journey was easy  but because in this journey I had to take, He was present–never leaving, never forsaking, ever so near, ever so faithful.

Whatever journey you may be in right now. I pray that you trust the One who holds the steering wheel of your life. He will get you there. The destination may be unclear now, but I am sure everything will turn out for your good because He is incredibly good. <3

Lord, thank You for the seasons You have faithfully brought in our lives. Thank You that every season, every journey is building us up to the ultimate journey we have in this life–the journey of loving You more and Your people more and more each day. May we eagerly await for You more than we await for the answers to our prayers. Lead our hearts to submit to Your good, pleasing and perfect will. Train our hearts to trust in Your steadfast love. We are safe in Your hands.

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His daughter.

I got invited to a party last week and the celebrant was from a prominent family here in our province. As I was talking to someone who is a part of this family, I think one of the guests got curioused who I was so she asked (I’m sure with no offense intended :) ) whose daughter I was.

Somehow I realized that’s how normally we associate someone we usually don’t know, right? We ask from what family they are related to.

Understandably, the person I was talking to wasn’t able to answer immediately since I was not really a daughter of someone they know from their sphere.

I was not offended at all by this but something struck my heart as I went about the party and ‘brushed shoulders’ with the higher ups of my community.

It was actually very humbling for me.

I realized, yes I’m not someone from a prominent family. My economic standing wouldn’t give me an access to the room I was eating at.

Yet I was there.

With a gentle whisper, I am affirmed, I am His daughter
…I am a daughter of the King of kings.

Given access before His presence
…before the most prestigious place anyone can ever be.

How humbling it is to be reminded that earthly prominence isn’t the only thing that will give me special privileges. My heavenly citizenship ultimately does.

How satisfying it is to tangibly taste and experience the favor and blessing that comes from the Lord alone. He is indeed good.

How overwhelming it is to be embraced by His steadfast love and undeserved grace.

Sweet Jesus, thank you for making this all possible for me.
Heavenly Father, thank you for adopting me into your family.
Holy Spirit, thank you for faithfully leading me to the truth of who I am.
I am eternally grateful.

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Mending now

 

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You hang around, oh this feels fine
Throw the confetti now
Flash your superb smile

The frost has melted, cozy on the floor
Lit a candle, still a bit tender
You lift up your hands
Memories tend to linger

No, don’t hide
Dream anyway
Let me stay beside you and say, hey

You’re mending now
Slowly getting there
A good laugh, a good cry
Feeling so much better

Throw open the windows,
out for a little walk
There was a slight drizzle

You draw in closer
to your hope that’s never fickle
Hey,
You’re mending now

Life changing lessons and life long friends.

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Big words. Daring commitments. But yes, even as I am typing this blog post, my heart seems to overflow more with gratitude, joy and awe of what God has done and what He has brought in my life a little over a week ago–life changing lessons and life long friends.

I’ve actually been looking forward to be part of  this school for the past two years already. I knew it was gonna be awesome, but going through the actual school for two weeks was something else!!!

From getting personal impartation from great spiritual leaders I highly look up to, to learning how to take off my minister’s hat but be still and bask in the presence of God as His daughter, to meeting and building friendship with spiritual family from Every Nation–ahh I couldn’t even begin to wrap my head around it!

But I know I’m a forgetful human, so in my hope not to forget the highlights of lessons and experiences God has faithfully allowed me to have, here goes a quick list of those things:

  1. Train yourself to be able to worship God even with eyes open. (I’m a eyes-closed-lift up-your-hands-forget-about-the-world-kind of worshiper. Ha. So when one of our Pastors instructed that, I kinda panicked. How to? But then he said, we gotta learn how to do that so we can learn how to see God through the distractions. God is bigger than the distractions around us and He will speak. I know, He did.)
  2. ‘What you’re building today will determine how you will face the crisis of tomorrow.’ -Pastor Jim Laffoon (Oh this one. Hit me hard. One of our Pastors said that being in the school for two weeks and encountering God there is well and good, but the goal is not just so we can simply have an amazing encounter with Him but that from there we will continue to build our lives–making room for God, seeking Him, building friendship with Him that no matter what circumstance may happen, we are covered. Hmmm…this statement made me ponder a lot how I’ve been living my life so far and how major adjustments and life renovation needs to be done. T.T Let’s do this!!!)
  3. Sometimes it’s not us waiting on God but it’s actually God waiting on us. (Did you hear me say, ouch? :( Many times I struggle about this, I wait and wait but then I fidget and get tired and just move on with what task I need to do next. I realized God’s always ready to speak to me, it’s just that my heart is just too unsettled to make room for Him to speak and when it takes too long for my liking, I just move away. *sigh* I tell you being in the school led me to many many many moments of repentance. Thank you Jesus for your grace!!! <3)
  4. Friendship is built intentionally. (Both with God and with spiritual family! <3 Pastor Jim said this about friendship with God “Friendship is not a gift. It’s a choice. It will take time. It’s not quick. There are no shortcuts.” Also true with building friendship with humans! I’m grateful that through the school I was able to meet family from Every Nation all over the world. But I knew meeting wasn’t enough, if I want to build friendship with them then I gotta set appointments with them for lunch or snack or dinner, have a conversation with them before the class start, take a selfie or a groupie!!!, ask questions, tell my story, listen and be there for them! I’m so grateful beyond words for the amazing men and women I got to meet and got to be friends with. <3)
  5. Write. Speak. (God will speak. He will reveal. He will strike our hearts. The moment will be overwhelming but sadly our human minds and hearts are simply just forgetful. So two action words that I learned I need to practice more–write, speak. Write–as fast as you can! haha especially when the lessons are just dripping with quotable quotes! but kidding aside–really to write–what God has been impressing in your heart, showing in Your mind, revealing in your dreams. Write it down. So you’ll remember. I find this helpful also to process them better later–with leaders who can speak to me and with people God wants me to share to. {Thus, this blog. hehe} Speak–in love and for love. Honestly, I am afraid to speak into the life of people sometimes, afraid that what I’ll say will simply won’t make sense, irrelevant to them, and just my words/imagination and not God’s. But I got encouraged with what one of the Pastor’s said–the goal is not accuracy but to minister. Having the heart to speak life and minister God’s love to a person is truly more important than saving my face. Yes. Speak, I will, Lord.)

Skimming through some of my notes made me realize if I continue to write all the highlights I got, it will take me a looooooong time. But I hope you got encouraged with some bits and pieces of what I learned and I pray to be able to share some more with you, through this blog, face-to-face conversation or even a chat!! <3 Add me on one of my social media!

Instagram: anjcambi

Facebook: Angela M. Cambi

I’d love to connect with you! Comment below how I can reach you? :))

Para sa mga pangit

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If ever you’re a non-Filipino friend or a visitor who happened to click this post, the title roughly translates to: “To those who are not goodlooking” :P

It was quarter to six in the morning, quite too early for me honestly, but I had to head out of the house and catch the earliest bus I can for a 3hour-ish trip back to our hometown and attend my little brother’s moving up ceremony.

Since I would go straight to the ceremony, I decided to do my make up and not have to arrive looking all haggard, panda eyes and all. I was able to hop on to a bus quick as soon as I was at the stop and what happened next was the reason for this blog post.

The conductor nicely said in Filipino/Ilocano combined…“Here you can sit infront (which is by the way one of the most comfortable seat for me because hello leg space).

I was grateful but then he said, “only those who are pretty can sit infront” he chuckled adding, those who are not get to sit at the back”

Aww. :( That was like a bomb that dropped in my lap. I couldn’t believe he said that. Ofcourse, he might have been just joking right?

Then the bus driver told him, “Don’t be like that.” I was relieved, staying silent. But to make me cringe more the conductor replied, “No, really. Look at those I sat at the back, ‘nagpapangit da’ (they are so unsightly/not good looking).”

I was crushed. I thought to myself, ‘good for you girl, you decided to put some make up on so you can somehow look presentable at 5:45 in the morning so you were able to pass this uncle’s standard who gets to sit in front or not.’

Maybe the conductor was just really joking. Maybe I’m just being too sensitive. But this hit me to the core and I want to speak out. Not because I just want to give the conductor my two cents worth of sermon or because I simply want to overplay what happened. I treated the conductor as nicely as I can all throughout the trip and won’t mention the bus company’s name because this is not about getting back after him or any sort :)

This is about addressing how we, myself included label people this or that and treating them accordingly.

I had a very pretty bestfriend in high school and some schoolmates  made a name for us ‘Beauty and the Beast’. Yup she was the beauty, I was the beast. I decided to forgive who said that and those who bullied me for my appearance. I speak blessing in their life but to say the least, it truly made me feel very very ugly in the past.

I can honestly say to myself, I’m not pretty if I would to compare myself to the Kardashians, the lovely korean female leads, Pia Wurtzbach, much less Belle.

I have the oiliest skin–if not for those heaven sent oil blotters I’d be a walking human reflector. I have a flat, huge button nose. Some people think i have cute freckles across my face at first but they are actually unsightly warts. I have wide spaced teeth which I need to fix with braces soon. I am not at my healthiest weight. I have a lot of scars in the legs, I can consume a whole bottle of concealer just to hide them. My kinky, wiry hair becomes this one large puff if I let them down. You may think I am coming from a low self esteem now but I believe I am not. Because, reality is I am all of the above, physically. If I don’t properly fix my hair, apply some loose powder and whatnot, I’d honestly look one unsightly mess, I myself would have a headache just looking at myself.

I can be what you call “pangit” if I don’t clean myself up to be a good representative of Who I am representing.

And maybe this is why I took it hard when that conductor made his remark. Because I know how to be called “pangit” and be treated poorly just because I am not as pretty as the girl beside me.

So if you have been called “pangit” or think you are “pangit”, I want to tell you…

You may be unsightly in the eyes of others. You may be unsightly in your very eyes. But you are never unsightly in the eyes of Your Maker, Your Heavenly Father.

Even if your physical appearance may not be the same as of those the ones they call beautiful, stunning or gorgeous, take comfort beloved, you didn’t need to be like them in the first place. You may look different, but why does that have to matter? If everyone of us looks all and the same, I personally think that’s a bit boring, don’t you think so too? ;)

People may treat you differently from the rest just because they don’t personally prefer you and well we can’t do much about that can we? It’s after all their personal preference, but you can be secured dearest because You have Someone who thinks you’re the most special because it was His fingers that made You, put you together in Your mother’s womb bit by bit, part by part.

I could imagine the warm smile He had on His lips when He was forming You knowing you’d be one of a kind, unique, lovely. People may treat you harshly but it’s only because they don’t see your true worth. But Him? He knows…for in Him, you are. You are His, and that’s the grandest value you could ever have.

I was reading 1 Peter this morning and I came across an all too familiar verse yet the power of its exhortation never becomes too familiar for me…

Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. (1 Peter 3:3,4)

hidden.

heart.

imperishable.

beauty.

gentle.

quiet.

spirit.

external? doesn’t really matter.

but with what’s on the inside? ah. now we are talking.

 

Lord, teach me to always work on how my heart looks like. teach me to value what’s on my inside rather than how I look on the outside. Dear Jesus, teach me to begin looking at people the same way you look at them–at their hearts and not on their appearance. Give me Your heart to value them for who they are in You–loved, precious, adored. And I praise You because I am too, in Your sight.