18 July 2009

"What My Feet Pleat!"

My two older boys love art and I try my best to allow them to enjoy that. I hate the cleaning up afterwards. Although they clean up most of it, I still have to make sure there are no paint drips or open markers laying around for the baby to grab and paint the walls. Hahaha! Yesterday was no different. The boys were doing some finger painting. Being the trouble-maker that he is, Boom-Boom got paint all over his shirt, mixed blue with yellow, and dripped paint all over the floor AND stepping on them! I ordered him to go to the bathroom so we can wash his feet. A few seconds later I heard this conversation:

Boom: Manong (big brother), can you wash my feet?

Jojo: What do you say?

Boom: What my feet, pleat! (Boom language which means "Wash my feet, please!")

Jojo: OK.

How many of us are willing to wash our sibbling's feet? At age 8? Not me.

John 13:4-8 [Jesus] got up from supper, and laid aside His garments; and taking a towel, He girded Himself. Then He poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. So He came to Simon Peter. He said to Him, "Lord, do You wash my feet?" Jesus answered and said to him, "What I do you do not realize now, but you will understand hereafter." Peter said to Him, "Never shall You wash my feet!" Jesus answered him, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me." NASB

These two boys are not even biological brothers but they are inseparable and they always help each other. And partly because of that, they learn to love and appreciate each other. Of course, they do argue and fight just like other kids but they do serve each other on a regular basis. I was going to wash Boom's feet and I probably would have done it with matching yelling at Boom-Boom for being so careless. Jojo did it with a willing heart. I even heard the two boys giggle in the bathroom. What a good example Jojo was to me about servanthood and humility.

11 July 2009

My Life is Service

It's been a month since my last posting. What a busy month June had been for our family - travels, guests, English camps at two schools, and as I am writing this we are hosting a team of thirteen people. We've had plenty of ministry opportunities - ministry ministry, ministry to friends, ministry to my family, etc. It seems like the whole theme was on service. Funny... because right when I was at the point where I was so emotionally and physically tired of serving other people, I saw this sign on a law firm door: "My life is service." It was like God giving me a slapping reminder on the face. "Darlene, your life is service."

Serving God by serving others is joyful and easy when we are full of energy and are vibrant in attitude. But what about those times when we are exhausted, fed up, selfish (what about serving ME this time?), and being required by God to do an extra act, an extra task, an extra hour? Are we still joyful? Am I still joyful? Much as I hate to admit it but there were a few times this past month when I wasn't a happy camper because I had to serve more than I was willing to.

Philippians 2:3-4 says, "Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others." (NASB)

When we willingly obey God about serving others, He gives us joy and contentment in serving even if there wasn't a fanfare appreciation for our deeds. That's when God is pleased with our service!

10 June 2009

Joy and Hope

I really don't know but for some reason this phrase kept popping up in my head yesterday, "the joy of the Lord." Hmmm...

...the joy of the Lord is my STRENGTH. Even when I am tired, discouraged or just plain have no motivation, the joy of the Lord is my strength.

...the joy of the Lord gives me JOY. It's not based on what I have or don't have. It's not based on my mood. It's not based on any of my accomplishments. Not even on my spouse or my kids. It's based on who God is!

...the joy of the Lord is my HOPE. Too many people around me are sad, discontented, feeling like a failure, wandering around with no goals and direction. Sad to say that some Christians are the same way. But when I put my trust in Jehovah, He gives me the joyful anticipation of knowing that He has something wonderful planned for me and my family.

Psalm 19:8 says, "The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes." That's what Christian life should be right there - joyful and hopeful!

01 June 2009


Just two days ago, people around the world anticipated the "Britain's Got Talent" finale. Seven weeks before that, Susan Boyle, took the www by storm. If you got on the internet regularly, you most likely heard her angelic voice or saw a video of her first performance on the big stage. When I first saw her video I cried. I then researched the search engines on whatever I could find about her. What a lowly background! She deserved to win although she came in only second. Blogs and news reports went flying the moment the winner was revealed on BGT's finale. Sad to say, many people had to say something not-so-nice about Susan's physical apprearance.

Beauty is very subjective. As a famous quote says... "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." Most people think that you have to be good looking to be successful. In my own experience, many times I get better service if I'm wearing make-up and dressed nicely. It clearly depicts the mindset we are emerged in . One of my favorite Bible verses is found in 1 Peter 3:3-4:

Your adornment must not be merely external--braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.

Two key words: merely and precious.

"Merely" clearly states that the outside apperance need not be neglected, but should not be the only important thing. "Precious" gives a picture of a gem - something beautiful to behold; something that is far more of value to God than the latest fashion trend and accessory.

Susan is not one of the most attractive person in the music world out there. I see beauty and strength within her. I try to see beauty beyond what is obvious to the eye, although I don't always. Someone recently posted this on her facebook status: "The average woman would rather have beauty than brains, because the average man can see better than he can think." True about men. True about women too! I'm guilty as charged. Many times I put too much emphasis on how I look outside that I totally neglect "the hidden person of the heart." Oh, Lord, have mercy on me!

26 May 2009


I grew up in the era of Superman, Wonder Woman, the Justice League, and Superfriends. Wow! If that's not going to give away my age, what will? I wanted to be Wonder Woman - being able to disappear, being able to help others with my power. I also wanted to marry Superman. Now... I can hear you snickering in front of your computer monitor. And when Superman and Wonder Woman marry, what would they have? Superboy!

Well... I'm no Wonder Woman; just a woman who constantly wonder about so many things in life. I didn't marry Superman, either. Although, sometimes he does things that are super cool! We DID HAVE a Superboy. I know it sounds funny but this is a true story that happened a few months back. (Sorry for the very late posting. Too many things to do in a day. I told you, I'm not Wonder Woman. Hahaha!)

We were going to eat lunch out with our friend and co-worker, Jenni. I was finishing getting ready in our bedroom on the second floor. When Jayjay (who was sixteen months at that time) saw his Daddy and brothers heading out the door, he ran after them down the stairs. Thinking he was being left behind, he JUMPED off the stairs!!! Ten feet straight down to the concrete floor while Ed (my husband) and Jenni were watching in horror and shock!

All I heard upstairs was... "No, Jay! No Jay! (two-second silence) Oh, Jay! Oh, Jay!" That's enough to make a mother's heart stop beating! I ran down the steps not really knowing what had happened. I found Ed cuddling a very pale toddler and a horrified "Aunt."

I held Jayjay in my arms and cooed in his ears, "Oh, baby! Oh mommy's baby!" We tried to keep him alert while Jenni told me what happened. As Jayjay was free-falling, his arms were wide open to the sides like he was flying. Now, if you had a child you would know that babies' heads are heavy and usually the first ones to hit the ground. Jayjay's head was up and his chin was the last to touch the floor!!! Fifteen minutes later, pink color came back to his face and he was walking. Thirty minutes later he was eating lunch at his usual superboy speed. An hour later he was walking around, pushing his stroller, and giggling.

That still didn't put us at peace. We decided to take him to a doctor in Bangkok. Four hours later we were sitting in the doctor's examination room after an x-ray was taken. The doctor shook his head and asked us AGAIN (for the 10th time) how Jayjay fell and how he landed. He couldn't believe it - "10 feet?! flat on the floor, not rolling down the stairs?! not a bump?! no broken bone?!" We said... "It was a miracle, Doctor. Angels protected him." He looked at us like we were nuts or something like that.

Psalm 91:11 - For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go. (NLT) I will never read or think or look at this verse the same way again... ever! And if Jayjay will ever come to a point in his life where he will doubt God's plan for him, the Superboy boy story will once again be told.
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