Make Jesus Known

My prayer is that Jesus hides me behind the cross. That it is Him who is Glorified and not me. To Him be all Praises and Honor and not for me. I am just someone He uses to get His Love Story out there.

It is also my prayer that I get opportunities to share Jesus with others, sure I’m an actress but I’m a really shy person, it’s hard for me to talk to people I don’t know very well. So when I suddenly start speaking of God, I know it’s not me but the power of the Holy Spirit within me.

I am truly blessed & inspired that a lot of people are being belssed & encouraged by reading my posts and I give God all the credit. When I read thru what I’ve written, I usually say to myself “I wrote that??” and I just know that it was God given wisdom.’for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say’. Luke 12:12

I also get frustrated sometimes when others misunderstand it and even go to as far as saying ‘Im crazy’ but the Word of God reminds me in 1 Corinthians 2:13-14 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.

So to my brothers and sisters in Christ. Don’t worry about what others would think about us. What matters is what Jesus thinks about us. Don’t be discouarged and continue to share God’s Love and Words every opportunity we get.

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

And The Bible tells us in Mattew 28:19-20 “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.

For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! 1 Corinthians 9:16

Choose wisely

A facebook post 4 years ago.

I came in a bit late in church today and missed the first part of the message 😁🙈 but God’s word is powerful nevertheless and part of the message our pastor shared today is something i used to be guilty of.

I used to believe that it’s God’s will for my life is to be in abundance in every aspect. Health, wealth- you name it. That he wants me to be prosperous and live a long trouble free life. I even went as far as sharing testimonies in churches and talks about the power of positive thinking and how God wants us to be the head in everything we do and that anything we want is just a prayer away if we follow God and trust in him. He will give us anything for the Heavens and the Earth are His.

Oh was I so wrong… Sure God wants to bless us but on His terms and by His grace and not because we declared it positively. His Word never promised us a life long of health, wealth and happiness… But He did promise us Grace.

Earlier our pastor talked about being a smart cunning and good steward of God and part of it was the prosperity theology and poverty theology.

Poverty Theology teaches that the lesser you have- the closer you are to God.

Prosperity Theology which teaches: the ‘holier’ you are, the richer you will be. And this has become so popular with many Christians (or ‘so called christians)

So which is right? None. Both are so wrong and we must only follow and believe the Gospel of Christ. Because it is not what we have or don’t have, it is only because of who God is that we are saved. And the only way we can be closer to Him is by His grace which He soooo freely gives to those who belive in Him.

This message spoke strongly to me because I used to be guilty of believing and even sharing the prosperity Gospel but the Prosperity Gospel is no gospel because it offers mankind only worldly things and is only using God to get to their real god which is wealth.

As Christians we are not called to ask God to be rich and prosper but to die to our old sinful self and abandon any wordly desires and follow and focus only on God.

God gives us favor and blesses us financially not to improve our standard of living but to improve our standard of giving.

Believing in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior offers us so much more than any worldy wealth- He offers us the gift of eternal life. And Just knowing that He loves us even though we dont deserve it is worth more than anything we can ever ask for on this earth.

Let me close this by encouraging you to ask God for discernment and wisdom. Always check everything with God’s word and if it goes against it then it is not the way to go. If we are not saddened or angered by prosperity gospels then we need to check ourselves and what is in our hearts. If your pastor or life group leader is only preparing you for this life and not the next then you are in danger.

Matthew 6:24 ‘You cannot serve both God and money’

Choose wisely.

If anyone teaches otherwise and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, they are conceited and understand nothing. They have an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain. But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. 1 Timothy 6:3-10

Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions. Luke 12:15

Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:19-21

Prosperity cannot be proof of God’s favor, since it is what the Devil promises to those who worship Him.– John Piper.

Sungka

When I had children, it wasn’t just my body that changed, my whole life did. Most of the time I am exhausted, I am tired, sometimes I cry (parang ngayon, parang tanga, umiiyak habang nagtatype) there are times when I feel like I can’t do it anymore… I look in the mirror and I see messy hair, walang ligo, my tummy covered in stretchmarks so deep you can play ‘sungka’, skin so loose, you can probably make a bag out of it, my breasts- well you my fellow moms know what these two looks like now- and then I look at my sons and they look back, one smiles back and the older one tells me ‘your tummy is so squishy mom, i love it… and even though I feel insecure about my body, I am not going to complain.

Kung ang kapalit naman ng lahat ng sakripisyong ito eh ang mga ngiti ng mga anak ko, okay na okay na ako. I will be grateful to God everyday for the gifts He has entrusted to me.

To mommies, nanays, mamas reading this- it may be hard right now, but it’s all worth it and know that soon, our babies will grow up and we will miss their littleness, their hypernessness and the noises and messes they make and our bodies will remind us that we once carried them and nurtured them.

You are Strong, You are Amazing, YOU ARE NOT ALONE. You may feel unappreciated but God sees you, knows you and what you’re going through and He loves you. Smile na, He’s got us…Tara Sungka tayo!

Forgive, it’s easier than Math

Forgive, it’s easier than Math. Math is Hard 😄. Funny but really just forgive. It may be very hard but you can do it through Christ. There’s no point in holding a grudge for we have all fallen short and have failed God, yet He still welcomes us with open arms and is always ready to forgive.

Ephesians 4:32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Mark 11:25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

1 John 1:9-10 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.

One day at a time.

I consider exclusively breastfeeding my 2nd baby for almost 6 weeks now one of my greatest achievement in life! (I mixed fed before) 5 weeks ago, my breasts were super engorged, my nipples sore and cracked and I almost gave up!

When we were still in the hospital, I felt proud nursing Tobias round the clock and I thought all was well in the breastfeeding world- I thought I was a pro! But about 5 days into it, I dreaded every feeding session, my toes would curl from the pain and I would cry while Tobias nursed. My nipples started to crack and it was so painful – (even more than going through child birth in my opinion)

I almost gave up. During one of those nights, I almost asked my husband, Marco to buy formula but I thank God I didn’t instead I manually pumped the really affected breast while I unwantingly nursed Tobias in the other.

On the 11th day, I couldnt take it anymore and went to see a lactation expert, I cried as soon as she asked me what was wrong. So she checked my breasts and I learned that they were engorged and had a lot of clogged milk ducts. She taught me how to massage it and taught me the correct way to latch.. and since then, breastfeeding became a breeze. Not right away but it definitely became easier as the days went by.

It really is very important to be truly informed and educated about breastfeeding even before you give birth. I actually attended a short breastfeeding talk with Ms Abbie before I gave birth and learned a lot but it was still very different learning from the actual experience. But being informed really does help!

So for those who are about to give birth and are planning to breastfeed and for those who are in the beggining of their breastfeeding journey and want to give up or learn more, here are some of the things I have learned that may help you:

• Mamas, the first 2 weeks are the hardest, after that it just gets easier (so hang on)

• Learn about breastfeeding as much as you can! Attend lactation talks and seminars if able.

• Prepare your nipples- make them tough, I started using lanolin cream only after my nipples cracked, so for you pregnant mamas, start applying lanolin cream daily even before you give birth.

• Breastfeeding wont start to hurt (atleast in my case) while still in the hospital, even when the latch is wrong, so make sure your baby is latching on correctly to avoid cracked nipples altogether.

• Apply cold compress when breasts are engorged and warm compress before each nursing session to help with the milk flow.

• Drink lots of water, eat healthy and take lactation supplements.

• I was also prescribed Lecithin (to thin out the milk and avoid clogged ducts) and Advil for the pain

• Seek help! Dont suffer in silence, breastfeeding should not be painful. Consult a lactation doctor/ expert.

My breastfeeding buddies: Medela Lanolin Cream, Lactaflow, Lecithin, Reusable Breast Pads form Avent, Hot or Cold Compress from Avent, Haakaa, Manual pump from Hegen and electric pump from Avent.

It’s also very important to have a support group that will encourage you and help you through the first few weeks of breastfeeding, in my case I would like to thank my sister for encouraging me, my mom too, my beetfriend Ivy. My husband- who went out in the middle of the night to look for a lanolin cream for me and who bought me a nursing pillow, Ms Abbie Yabot for encouraging me and giving me advise even though she’s away, my friend Princess and her husband Doc Bistek, our kumpare who is also Noah and Tobias’ pedia for encouraging me and for introducing me to Dr Jamie Isip- Cumpas and ofcourse thank You Jesus for Your undending supply of grace and strength and joy through it all.

5 weeks ago, I wondered if I would last another day or even another session of breastfeeding- but look at me now! So mamas, don’t cry na, if you feel ready to give up, just look at your Little One and know that you are doing so well and it will soon become easy… again you are not alone. You can do this! One day at a time…

The tips I have written here are from own experience, it may or may not work for you, it is still best to consult your doctor or lactation expert to make sure.

Write your questions, tips or comments below and let’s help each other out!

1 Month Post Partum or 4 months pregnant?

Just a few days after giving birth, some relatives and friends visited me and asked “Bakit ang laki pa rin ng tyan mo?!” (Why is your tummy still so big?!). I know they don’t mean anything bad but people can be so insentive, and all those magazines and photos of ‘celebrities and models’ that seems to look so perfect right after giving birth doesn’t help either. I mean, hello I just gave birth, i was cut open and a human being came out of me!

It was really difficult to post this photo, to show what the world sees as ‘flaws’, but well this is the real deal. My body housed 2 beautiful baby boys and it took 9 months each time to grow them in my belly and I have accepted the fact that it will take some time for my body to go back to the way it was (if it does go back) And if it doesn’t, that’s okay too.

Don’t get me wrong I’m happy for those moms who have flat tummies just a few days after giving birth, but we’re all different, our bodies are all different and that’s okay and I want other mamas out there who are like me, who look at themselves in the mirror and feel sad because of what they see. I want you to know that you are not alone…

So to all the mama’s out there who’s exhausted, who’s not had a proper shower, whose breasts are super sore, those who can’t recognize their own bodies because of the stretchmarks and the chloasma or the dark patches all over their bodies, to those who still look pregnant after a month or even months after giving birth- cheers to us! We are are all beautiful and unbelievably strong and God has given us such a wonderful gift that’s worth all these hardships and body changes… So cheer up Mama You really are amazing!

To my Tobias- happy 1 month baby ko, you and kuya Noah are worth every stretchmarks, body changes, every pain, every sleepless night and wouldn’t trade you for anything…

Thank You Jesus for the strength You provide, physically and emotionally, thank You for Your love that gives confidence to this mama and every mama reading this. Thank You Jesus!

Beautiful in His eyes

George 😍

“I pray that you will always know that you are beautiful because you are God’s wonderful creation, that you are loved and your family and your ninongs and ninangs will always be here for you.”

This photo was taken during ‘George’s‘ (Krystal Dannela’s) 1st birthday and dedication and I remember telling the photographer to make sure I don’t look fat in the photo 🙊 (He said he wasn’t a magician, but I think he did a pretty good job)

You see, i have been feeling really ugly recently. At 31 weeks I have already gained almost 30lbs, I’ve gotten pretty big in a lot of areas- including my nose (🍅) and a lot of areas in my body has started to darken- my neck, my tummy, belly button area, underarms, and even some parts of my face…

I always tell @marcoalcaraz that I’m so ugly and he would gently remind me that I’m pregnant and assures me how beautiful I am and that he loves me no matter what… and I’m thankful for a loving husband.. but we can’t always depend on someone to tell us we are beautiful and we are loved…

There will come a time for all of us when we will feel ugly even we’re really not. Sad for no reason at all. Worthless, unappreciated… And this is not just for us ‘pregnant women’, anyone of us can go through these kind of emotions and we must never forget, that our worth is not based on how we look, our status, what we have in our life, how much money we have in the bank… but in how God sees us- as His precious children. Worth saving. Worth dying for.

When nobody seems to care or when no one is around to tell you – always remember this:

Jesus loves you my friend and you are beautiful in His eyes.