Ballpen: A short anecdote| T.O.A.

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“I’m sorry to disturb you. But I hope you understand. I am a father, with children who I send to school. This is the only moral way I know to earn a living. If you could just buy (even one or a few), it would mean a great deal. Thank you!”

 

Those were the few words uttered by the elder man who was obviously roaming the streets earlier today- amidst the sorching heat of the sun and danger of going from jeep to jeep in the middle of heavy traffic. He  basket full of pens in hand and small printed notes that more or less said what he had uttered.

All this, just so he could send his child(ren) to school.

Some may say, it could be another modus operandi, a hoax to get people’s money. It’s a thing so common in the Philippines when you roam the streets and you encounter indigents who ask for alms. There are people who take advantage of the suffering of others…

Others who think that they have no other choice, if they wish to survive.

But dare I say, where is the proof? Would we dare choose to believe the latter whilst knowing that there is an equally high chance that a simple ballpen could mean a child’s future?

But besides all this, I was nearly moved to tears…

I felt guilty…

 

Being still considered a fresh graduate and having earned my license last October, my current job has had me in the ropes. I’ve faced challenges and situations that have me constantly pondering whether I did the right thing, and/or whether the struggles are worth it.

 

But what are my struggles, compared to others who choose to push on? Like that man who had put aside any concern for his health and being for the sake of the future of another?

 

Love.

 

Hope.

 

Selflessness.

 

Goals.

 

Purpose.

 

No matter what our situation is written to be…no matter how grim or trialsome…May we never lose sight of these.

Morning musings: Trees and Growing up

It’s nearly a week since I’ve earned my license.

And as the days pass by, I’m still taking it in. More than 13 thousand people like me took that exam. I am more than blessed to be of the less than of it to have passed.

Just this morning, just after I had finished preparing breakfast and mopped the floors, I thought how familiar the sounds of the outside of our apartment have become to me, venturing up to this point. From the humming of the tricycles or the thrumming of the jeepneys that passed by our street, to faint chirping of the birds flying above who knows what, to the sounds of people getting along their day whether for work or for school. All these sounds and the sounds of the province my family and I had left behind for a nearly half a year now, were the sounds I had grown accustomed with as a student or a fresh graduate, striving to earn her license so that she might find a good place in oh-so-tumultuous economy.

And now, she has. Now, though those sounds that may be so routine, something about the one listening to it has changed.

I wonder what a tree “feels” when it’s finally stretched out it’s branches out into the open, each twig covered with leaves, now ready (?) and facing all the elements. Does it the feel the same way as I do?

I wonder if it’s the same with what a newly and fully grown cheetah feels after it’s mother, who had raised him/her, must let him/her now face the wilderness all on his/her own?

Now I’m an adult, and can be capable of finally providing for myself, giving back to my family….giving back to society.

Like a fully grown tree, ready to bear fruits or flowers or cones or whatever potential that has been placed within.

But though it may be able to stand now on it’s own it has to always be connected to the earth, strong in its own roots to stand long. Like as it was a seedling, it will always need the same elements and nutrients that it needed- probably even more. It will always need the care of the one that planted, and nurtured it ’till full growth.

But forget that, and it soon will wither and break in face of the elements. Sometimes right after so much less than it took for it to grow, or sometimes much longer.

Ah, look the time!!!

I better get going~

I pray you all have a wonderful day everyone!

THANKS

When you pray for rain, and go outside bring with you an umbrella. That’s how you should act towards your prayer. That’s Faith.- mom

Four days ago, I spent most of my time lying in bed- sleeping away my anxieties about the results of the CPA board examinations that I had taken for the past two weekends. After 6 years in undergraduate studies, and another 4 months in review this was the crucible of my life into the working force of society. I was in the midway of transitioning between my life as a student towards the beginning of my life as a professional.

Throughout my life, I had learnt that my fate though my actions do play a big part of it, is not fully just because of my own efforts, and skill. That every “failure” is a blessing disguise. Every moment, meant to forge me into someone in the future that is…like I have prayed from a certain point in my life.

But still I was afraid, that I may not have made it. The ramifications of not making it now were too hurtful to think about, and I prayed to be able to be able to endure it should it come to pass.

Not to say, that this- making it, passing the CPA licensure examinations- has no ramifications. It does. And just the same, I continuously pray to be able to endure and surpass them as well.

And having reached this point, I am filled with so much, so much joy and thanks. It makes it hard to breathe, hard to write further…

But all praise be to God, I managed to compose and gather my thoughts. Posted in my other SNS with quite a few changes, but without changing the essence. I leave it here, and to all who have been reading and sharing with this humble blog- THANK YOU.

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful..

“O God! Lord of Power (And Rule), Thou givest power to whom Thou pleasest, and Thou strippest off power from whom Thou pleasest: Thou enduest with honour whom Thou pleasest, and Thou bringest low whom Thou pleasest: In Thy hand is all good. Verily, over all things Thou hast power.” (3: 26-27)
Still, not fully absorbing the matter as of now but one thing is for sure, I had set my mind and soul that whatever the outcome of this stage I was blessed with more than enough.

My family, my friends, the people I met and encountered from different walks of life, my teachers both in my undergraduate years and in the mentors in the last 4 months of review…even the people in the bakeshop I frequented and that kind elder lady I pass by sometimes at nearby university’s overpass…

I was and am blessed with more than enough, that I know no matter what happens now it is my first and foremost duty to remain steadfast in Faith and live my life to the fullest Faith.

When I took those 7-board subjects, I left the testing centers feeling as if I had no control. And I didn’t. I knew I didn’t. But I shaded each number with no trust in my knowledge, but full trust in His Grace. My preboard exams had been nowhere as satisfactory as my peers. Because, to be honest, once you see the exam questions there will be countless times when you doubt your judgement. And the human capacity, is oh so, so limited.

And after it all, all of those who took the exam with you realize this: If not for Him, this would be nothing. I would be nothing.

There are those who know me who might think and wonder if I am truly happy with this path I have chosen. “Being an accountant is far from my passion of being a writer/journalist/teacher”.

The thing is, I am. I am grateful, and happy. Challenged and honored. If anything, this path I have embraced has taught me and opened my eyes to kind of person- the kind of writer, journalist, and teacher I would truly want to be up until the end of my days (God willing).

Most of all, I learned that to pursue each dream, is to be accountable for it. That these goals may even change or evolve as we unravel who we truly are, by God’s Grace alone.

Being able to enter the profession of accountants, has only God willing, brought me a step closer towards the person He wants me to be. In all aspects.

(Also, am I not writing now?)

I also learned that no matter what I do, it is not insignificant. Not in His eyes. And trying my best in every aspect of my life, starting with my family and those close to me, is as significant as any endeavor I undertake.

Looking back, do I regret being not able to pass my scholarship exam to that prestigious university and had gone abroad? Do I regret not being able to finish my years in my first uni? Do I regret being held back by a year or two from graduating and earning my licence earlier? Do I regret even having to go through the metaphorically bloody and grueling years of a student of accountancy?

How many times, each year and up until now have I prayed “O Lord, if this is good for me, for my service, for my promise, for ‘that day’, bring me through it” ?

And here I am.

Indeed, God’s wisdom is Infinite.

For all those years, I am thankful. I could not imagine taking another route. I could not imagine the blessings I have and am receiving, had I been led towards another path.

So before anyone, all praise and glory be to the One True God. All praise is due to Him…

for giving me my family- my irreplaceable mother, my father, my lovable and protective brothers, my strong and cool sister, my nephew (squeee~), my dear uncles, aunts and cousins from all degrees, even the legacy that my grandparents have left to teach me..

for giving my dear and true friends… (no naming. Don’t want to be unfair. You guys know who you are. Love, love~)

for my teachers who believed in me. From my English teacher in my early highschool and elementary days, to my dear teachers and mentors in  Senior High (including Ma’am Principal!), to all my undergraduate teachers both in first and second universities (in all subjects, minor or major)…

for the memories and stories of people near and afar that have served to remind, reprimand, and inspire me…

for this. This, minor, minor yet very meaningful achievement.

I have earned two earthly titles- MICB, CPA.

Glory be to God!

May we earn an even more esteemed place in His Presence, God willing. Ameen!

True Sufficiency, True Comfort|T.O.A. Drabbles

True Sufficiency, True Comfort|T.O.A. Drabbles

COMFORT
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The pain and the loss that is bound to happen in this world only affirms the ever-need of the Hereafter, the Day when all things will be set aright and when the true bonds that were severed will be reestablished, never to be broken again.

The pain and loss of this world only affirms the Truth that our dependence and devotion can never be on anything or anyone of this world…but the heartbreaks only awaken the heart to seek for the True One Pillar that all must depend upon, and seek true solace from there.

The pain and loss of this world only affirms the unchangeable reality of “There is no god (worthy of worship and utmost reverence) but the One True GOD”…which then becomes a true source of comfort, no matter how painful things can be for anyone, anytime and anywhere.

 

SUFFICIENCY
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The everlasting truth of our own limits can drive one to complete devastation and desolation. We realize when growing up that no matter how much we try to hold on to the people and things we come to care (deeply) about we, for a painful larger part, are helpless and unable in keeping them. We cannot, for the life of us, keep those whom we love safe at each breath and blink of the eye. We cannot, for the life of us, be absolutely sufficient in not displeasing them. We can, but only for a certain extent (that is given to us).
But for eternity, we cannot. We cannot.

That is why to completely (and admittedly, most often), keep our hopes on our abilities and our “own powers” is simply foolish. Even those who were given control over the wind cannot control everything. Superman can’t stand Kryptonite. Hulk’s weakness is his own strength. Thor will always struggle with Loki. Even Batman can be dumbfounded.

..but our own limits teaches us to look towards the source of it all- an Infinite Source. The Origin…the True One Pillar that all must depend upon, and seek true solace from there.

Crossing Bridges. A short anecdote for this day| Thoughts of An Ahjumma

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“By understanding the past you understand the future, unless you change your ways, life will repeat in an endless cycle.”

In the name of GOD, Most Gracious, Most Merciful…

No words can begin to describe what I am feeling today.

Graduation….graduating from college is one of the said most important turning points in one’s life. The crucible, the climax of a stage.

No words can come from me, but by God, that can describe what I’ve learned.

Graduation. Life. Turning Points. Stages.

The moment where I’ll be stepping out of this plane, and crossing the bridge onto the next.

Graduating from college makes me think of that future stage when I’ll be “graduating from life.”

All of the moments, all of the tears, all of the smiles…All of it add up to who and where I am today. And none of them are truly because of me. No, not even the success. I see that now.

Above all, I am always and most grateful unto the One True God.  And certainly, no words can express how grateful I am for the people I’ve encountered in my life, even those I didn’t actually talk to.  Even the shows I’ve seen on TV has taught me certain significant things. *laughs*

And through it all, it’s the tears that seem the more weighty amongst all the experiences.  The struggle, the hurt…all of them, for reasons I’ve came to understand, for reasons I’m just coming to understand and for reasons I have yet to understand, were worth it.

 

And that’s just talking about going through the “phase” called college.

What more in the whole journey  called “Life”?

What about those who were past this stage? What were you thoughts back then? What are you thoughts now, whenever you look back?

 

 

I only pray that I’ll be able to “graduate” from Life, and not flunk it. Ameen.

 

 

The Middle Way| Faith and Character| TOA: Reflection Shorts

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The way of the One True God, in His True Message, is the way of balance and never of the extreme. His Guidance covers all aspects of life as it covers the entire cosmos for He, in His Absolute Oneness, is the Originator and the Creator of all things. He forbade the extremes such as the extravagance-greed/miserliness, and arrogance-self-depreciation/self-abasement, recklessness-cowardice and complacency-rigidity.

                           -(the gist of this Friday’s Qutbah/sermon… All glory and thanks be to the One True GOD.)

For having True Faith which is rooted in True Belief, for example, means being grateful and humble. Seeing what you have and even what you have not, as gifts/blessings in disguise. As to spending, not wasting your blessings in vain things (extravagance) but also realizing the blessing in sharing. As to character, it is having hope and seeing wisdom in the purpose of the skills we have been given, thus witnessing God’s Absolute Greatness above all through our limits. It is having the understanding what it means to Trust in His Wisdom and Power, and also what it means by being His Creation gifted with a limited free-will: the responsibility to act with and for Truth and Justice. (Blabbered reflection.)

 

A/N: A new section! Under this section, are “drabbles” of thoughts taken from instances of daily life. They aren’t really write-ups like FROZEN and others under the Thought’s of an Ahjumma (elder lady/auntie) category. I was hesitant to post here with such shortness, but then somehow the idea of making a section named with the word “shorts”  (hahahah) seemed to fit it just right. Again, all praise be to GOD.

On Having Faith. | T.O.A

On Having Faith. | T.O.A

True Faith is following the “way of balance”. Having it means having the balance between sincere confidence (in the things you can do) and humility (in accepting that there things beyond you), between being content in what you have (gratitude) and believing you can improve (having an ambition).

Having True Faith is realizing that you are under the One True GOD’s Mercy, Justice, His Dominion, and by (following) His Decree realizing that you are meant to be a gift, a positive force in His Creation.