Love.

Let me start of with a verse that is very familiar to most of us Christians: Jeremiah 17:9

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”

There are so many ways that the heart can deceive us but in this particular blog, I would like to focus on love. Yes, love. By that I mean the love that makes you giggle or the love that makes you think you might have ingested 20 living caterpillars considering the crazy feeling of butterflies flying about in your stomach.

I am not typing all of these down because I’m any better than any of you. Nope, not at all. I’m writing this down because like you, I am currently in a battle against my own heart. A very good friend of mine used to tell me that “We must be ruthless with our hearts.”

The heart, although it’s actually the hypothalamus and amygdala, is known to be the center of emotions. A symbol of love and affection. Surely, we all have heard of the famous quote: “Follow your heart”. Hmmm. Question, could we really trust our hearts?
The bible said that it is deceitful. Uh, I don’t know about you but I think this verse is pretty legit.

Two months ago, I was staring at point blank and there was this guy who went to that particular space. So, I ended up staring at him. Right then and there, God spoke to me saying:

“Nicole, if you were ever to fall in love with someone, may the love he gives you lead you to loving Me more and if someone was ever to fall in love with you, may the love you give him lead him to loving Me even more.”

Copy, loud and clear, Lord. Aye, aye Captain!

 

RIGHT LOVE, WRONG HEART

Girls (or guys, if there are guys out there), I have a question. Be honest. Do you like someone right now? If yes, are your feelings for them leading you to God or is it pulling you away from Him? We have to be careful. The bible did say in Matthew 22:36-40 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that the person you like right now is the wrong person to love (although, that could also be the case). You could be loving the right person but the problem is you are loving them with the wrong heart. If you fail to love God first and foremost, then you are most probably not ready to love anyone just yet.

Loving God first and foremost is very important for every Christian. If you remember, I wrote something about how Jesus should be our first dance. It’s in that first dance that we get to feel what it’s like to be loved and to give love back. It’s in having a relationship with Jesus that we get to learn how love should be. Until Jesus sees that you are ready, He won’t let anyone cut in between the dance He has with you. You have to understand, He’s not only trying to make you wait for the right person, He is also trying to teach you and mold you into being God’s best for the one He has prepared for you.

(If you haven’t read FIRST DANCE, here’s the link: https://kathiawrites.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/ladies/ )

 

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

So what if you’re still single? So what if your friends are already getting married? So what if your neighbor already has a ring on their finger? Is it really that bad? Not at all! Singleness is the perfect time to spend time with God! Take it this way. You are single now because God is still sculpting off a few rough edges, He is still tinkering about your broken pieces, He is still molding you. You are still under construction. Like I said earlier, He is making sure that you would become God’s best for the one He has prepared for you. The construction may take a long time but building a foundation is a critical work. That is why He is so keen about every detail of you, He wouldn’t compromise a little crack.

Yes, you are single but you are not unloved. God loves you and that should be more than enough. A wrong relationship with God will give you a wrong heart and a wrong heart will lead you to the wrong relationship with others.

 

SATISFACTION

People, myself included, often rush into finding true love because we want to feel what it’s like to love and be loved back. They say it’s a wonderful feeling. Who wouldn’t want that? I don’t know about you but if someone asked who wants to be loved, I would probably be the first to raise a hand (I might even raise my other hand and my two feet along with it). I really, really, really want to fall in love and be loved back. But, I am loved. You are loved. We are loved. Jesus loves us so much to the point of the cross.

So although the anticipation of falling in love is intense, may our satisfaction with the love that Jesus have for us be more intense! We have to be satisfied with that love! As a matter of fact, it should overwhelm us! How could the glorious God come down on the low class Earth when He could’ve just stayed in Heaven where angels praise Him, where He could breathe Class A air, where His royal robes are, where there are streets of gold, so on and so forth? I mean, who was He coming for? He came for people such as you and me, people who might not even be satisfied with His love, people whom He knows would reject and deny Him along the way, that’s the kind of people He came for and yet did He fly back to Heaven? No! He took on death because He loves you and He desires to have a relationship with you. This is the kind of love that we should desire! Selfless and unconditional. This is the kind of love He teaches us to give. True love starts when we accept the greatest love of all, Jesus. On Him should our satisfaction and feeling of acceptance be.

 

WAIT

Let us wait patiently on God. His timetable is perfectly timed. Your love story won’t be anything like the movies. It will be better than that. Your scriptwriter is not just any scriptwriter. He doesn’t err, He makes no mistake. Therefore wait. Don’t rush. Make the most out of your singleness.

Love should not be identified with our spouse-to-be. No. Love should be identified and specifically be inclined with Jesus Christ alone. The rest will follow. Love the Lord your God first that you may be able to love others.

Love is beautiful. Therefore, don’t let your heart deceive you into settling for anything less. Allow God to mold it and fill it with so much of His love. The heart is deceitful. Guard it above all else.

It Was Nice Meeting You.

I can’t remember how we first met. Although I’m pretty sure it was the age of ponytails, dirty uniforms and congested, runny noses.

You were a funny, little boy.

I was feisty and hot tempered.

You always got into my nerves! However, I never knew you would become a very special person in my life.

Soon enough, we started talking in the phone up until 3am and we even got our parent’s permission for it. Learning to count in our dialect was my favorite talk over the phone. Did I ever thank you for being there when my grandfather died? If I hadn’t, I wanna thank you now. You don’t know how much it helped me.

I never considered anyone to be my friend but with you, it was different.

I started to look at you as my best friend, my confidant but I guess you didn’t see me the same way. I never understood who I was in your life until you pulled my skinny arms so hard away from that guy I used to like.

“I love you.” you shyly said underneath the teacher’s table, amidst the dark, unlit room.

“I love you.” you repeated after receiving no response from me. How can I? What was I to say? I was too mesmerized by your brown eyes, they showed too much honesty that it scared me. I knew those eyes full well, they were my best friend’s, they were yours but that moment, those very eyes flooded my mind with so much confusion. My heart was beating so fast, it felt like it could pop out of my chest at any moment then.

So I laughed.

I laughed it off.

And I’m sorry.

I’m sorry because I didn’t value how you felt.

I’m sorry because I pushed you away.

We were young and I was very scared of love.

I always thought love was full of drama, heaps of tears and big boulders of problems. Back then, the very mention of the word “LOVE” makes me hear my parent’s rants and scoldings. It makes me see accusing fingers pointing at me and judging eyes piercing through me.

I was selfish. Thinking only about my self dignity but love scared me and back then, that was the only thing I was sure of.

Well, not until our friendship ended.

We were always sitting next to each other with only the classroom’s aisle between us yet not even a single word was being said.

The loud and boisterous silence shouts into my ears and it made me sad.

You never knew how much I cried because I missed you.

I wanted to tell you.

But how can I? When the only person I can run to was the very person I ran away from.

The distance between our hearts and the absence of “YOU” in my life revealed one thing and one thing only.

“I love you too.” I said confidently because I knew you wouldn’t hear.

Too late. You were already with someone new.

And then another one,

and another one,

and another one.

Girls after girls in just one year.

One thing they had in common, they all came apologizing to me. They were sorry that they were with you and I was not.

I felt insulted.

Then one day, as we were the only ones left in school, you sat on the chair 30 inches away from mine.

I don’t know about you but the atmosphere that day was plain awkward.

Even my sweat rolled down my back for escape.

“Who’s your first love?” after one school year, we finally talked again and that was the first thing you said to me.

“Who’s your first love?!” You asked again, more aggressively the second time around.

I was astounded by your question because I knew my answer. You.

I remained silent and scared. Scared because I knew that whatever would come out my mouth will determine whether we could be the best of friends again or remain distant forever.

“YOU.” with just a three-letter word, you broke the silence.

“You are my first love.” you blurted with your eyes looking up like a grown up man trying to keep his tears from falling.

It’s weird. My heart stopped beating fast. Even the wind stopped blowing.

It was just you and me.

“You’re my first love too.” I confessed with tears rolling down my eyes.

It felt like we were back to ponytails and runny noses.

However, I knew our love story ends there.

It hurt because I was so sure of it.

Being your first love will never mean I will be your last.

What hurt me more was the fact that we could never bring back the friendship I have missed so dearly.

Even our friendship had its own “The End”.

You are now with someone else.

I’m happy to see that she has become both your best friend and a lover.

I’m writing this to you to thank you.

You taught me to value how one feels.

You’re the reason why I want to fall in love and be loved.

You taught me how to love.

Thank you for being a story in a chapter of my life. Thank you for making a number of pages colorful and for even painting some of it black.

God has placed you in my life for a purpose and He took you out of it for a greater reason I cannot fathom. For whatever it is, I am grateful.

To my first love, it was nice meeting you.

Stories.

I was browsing through my Facebook home and I know that this post was just like the other posts about “who knows me well” and all that. So this photo was one of it. Credits to the owner, by the way.

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The next sentences are only me and my brain talking. I’m not trying to dart the person who posted this picture.

So, I was thinking. This generation is so concerned about themselves, about “me, myself and I”. Like, “Who knows me better” or “If you really know me, name my favorite cartoon character”. Those kind of self-centered posts. I have nothing against that, really. I mean, I’d love to know who cares enough to actually know me but then a thought comes into my mind:

How about the guard in your school’s front gate, or that annoying friend you just can’t stand? How about the woman you just shook your hand with at church?

DID YOU ACTUALLY GIVE THE SLIGHTEST EFFORT TO KNOW THAT PERSON?

What’s their story? Are they going through anything? Are they having problems at home, maybe you could help?

You see, there are far more important questions to ask about a person, not merely their favorite color or their choice of food in a mart.

You can’t say you’re a very good friend just because you know when their birthday would be. If you were ever a friend to someone, you would care enough to know their story. Stories that needs to be dug somewhere between that beautiful facade called smile or that well said statement, “I’m fine.”.

There’s more stories to make you feel happy and satisfied than knowing someone knows your age or who you are currently in love with.

There’s a whole world beyond you.

Say it: THERE’S A WHOLE WORLD BEYOND ME.

Trust me, it is so fulfilling to listen to someone, to understand them, to take the time of making them feel special.

You don’t have to do what I’m saying if it is against your will but make this as a suggestion or an opinion. You have the choice to either try it or go on in a world revolving around yourself.

 

AGAIN, I am not criticizing these kind of posts because I actually find it fun too. hahaha So, blame this messy brain I have.

 

 

Beautiful Minds.

#[02222016]

Today was my first day in the Psychiatric ward.

You guys should’ve seen our faces. We were excited and yet we were also anxious and scared. We had too many questions, too many what-if’s even though we were already given an orientation before.

The guard unlocked the gate, pulled it open for us, I can even hear the metals clanking and right at the moment I took one step inside the facility, my heart skipped a beat. It felt like I entered the realm of “The Walking Dead” (Have you ever seen that series? I haven’t. I mean, I only saw about 2-3 episodes in season 2). Their were arms flailing from barred rooms, men and women calling out at us, some smiling widely, some staring at us with curiosity. It was a bit scary. My partner had to grip my arm so tight I could hardly feel it.

We then went to the basketball court at the male clients’ garden (or was that a garden? Not so sure. It was like an open place or something). That was the place where we were given an orientation by the nurse on duty in that ward. The male clients were still inside taking their medications, daily baths and other daily routines they have.

The orientation was a brief recall of theories we’ve learned and important things we should carry with us. He also shared tons of stories. Some made me relieved and some scared me more.

Then, the male clients went out into the open area with us even while we were having the orientation. I can feel everyone going stiff, including me. Then we were dismissed and were told to go find clients for ourselves. We had to face our fear at that instant.

I placed a big smile on my face, putting on an aura of courage but deep inside I know I’m scared. However, when I finally got talk to one of them, they weren’t so bad at all. They were nice, a lot like babies actually. You see, people with mental illness usually delves themselves into the early stage of life — preschool age and such.

There was one patient, he was on his 30’s and yet when I asked him how old he was, he answered me saying: “DOSE.” In the English translation, that meant “TWELVE”.

I had a lot of experience in the ward. It didn’t scare me but rather it lifted me up. It felt a lot like a happy place. Now, don’t get me wrong. HAHA. I’m not crazy.

I met different kinds of people there. One of them was a medical student. She was very interesting. She had on a red lipstick and her wet hair was combed well. While me and my classmates were gathered in a big crowd she started to walk in between all of us and pointed her fingers towards the bathroom saying: That’s my concert hall. That’s where I sing all my songs. It has three compartments. Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. I always go to Visayas.” I didn’t need to translate anything to you this time because that was exactly how she said it. She was talking to us in English. (Note: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao are the 3 largest islands of the Philippines.) Another woman, probably in her mid-20’s welcomed us. She actually oriented us in the whole women’s floor. It felt like she was in her sanity. It was fun listening to her. She didn’t seem crazy at all. One time, she challenged the nurse in-charge to tour us around to ask us questions but since the nurse no longer had anything else to ask us, she took over. “Bi, bi, unsa may gamit sa Risperidone bi?” In English it meant: “So, what is Risperidone for?” She challenged us as if so sure that we had nothing to answer.

The people there are amazing. So are the patients. Looking at them, I wonder what each of their stories are, how they got there, why they’re even there and so much more.

So, for all the student nurses out there who are about to be exposed in the Psychiatric Ward for the very first time, this is my advise to you. Carry everything you have learned in theory in your heart and mind BUT! (“BUT” emphasized right there.)  BUT never let it dictate your perception of the patients. Learn to explore the vast unknown of their personalities. Do not let your knowledge scare you thinking you know what a mentally-ill-individual is thinking. That’s being judgmental. As student nurses, always carry a pocket full of knowledge, courage and compassion. Don’t look at your patients as someone who’s barbaric, uncivilized and all that. Erase your imagination of a crazy person with golden teeth, coated with too much dirt that when you look at them the only thing that’s white are their teeth. Stop imagining them having unkept, messy hair with no baths while laughing all the way, stop thinking even that they are always plotting to hurt you or harm you. Remember, you came here for them, not for you. You are not the star here. They are but of course, always be on your guard. We still must look out for ourselves to be able to render care to them but be careful also not to be too careful of yourself that you end up mistaking them for someone they are not. Compassion. Always remember that. 🙂

I’m very thankful to God for giving me the privilege to meet these people with such beautiful minds. They are precious beings. I feel kind of bad for thinking wrongly about them. It was an honor to know that they’re not that scary at all. They may be different, yes. Mentally-challenged, yes but still, they are God’s creations. They’re still beautiful.

Medical Missions

It was on the 17th of November 2015 that I wrote this thought with ink and on paper.

I got so tired of Nursing, of my life as a whole. My faith was running out of gas. I saw no value nor purpose in it. In fact, I begged God to take me home. I no longer wanted another day.

One day, my mama asked me to assist her in taking pictures in a Medical Mission trip.
Downcast as I was, I didn’t have the heart to go but at the same time, something in me tells me that I needed to go and on I went.

On our way to the mission field, I asked God,

“Lord, hanung imo man jud kong paadtuon? Wa ko kasabot Lord.”

English Translation: “Lord, why are you leading me there? I don’t understand.”

Then, Medical Missions started and God has given me the grace and the chance to use my profession of choice into practice, NURSING.

Serving God filled me with so much joy, I would fail to explain it.

As the day came to a close and the Medical Mission in that particular place was over, I prayed and asked God again.

“Lord, unsa man jud imong purpose atu?”

English Translation: “Lord, please tell me what your purpose for all that.”

Then, He answered me saying,

“To remind you why you’re there in the first place.”

Boom! Fireworks! Loud gong! Bang, bang, bang!

Everything is starting to fall into place. It seems that I gave up on life because I was not living THE LIFE. I started to live for the purpose of MYSELF. Study hard, aim for good grades, what to eat, what to wear, friends but life is God and if life is God then “SELF” has no place in it.

Sadly, this is how life has been for the majority and I hate to break it to you but you’re living a life made by the standards created by people.
Born to go to school, get a diploma, graduate in flying colors, travel the world, settle down, build a family and die only to realize you have never lived at all.

I am not saying that living that kind of life is wrong. It is not wrong to have goals and dreams in life as long as it will always go to and for the glory of God. Such life becomes wrong when it takes you away from God’s plan and purpose for your life. If it pulls you further and further away from God and if it sucks all the time out of your schedules, if it becomes your sole and top priority life then it is wrong.

You see, life is for God and to live it for yourself would not be called LIVING but shall be called DYING.

Imagine a bird which was created to fly but then its fellow birds tells it that they were meant to swim and so the bird dives onto the depths of the water and enjoys it for a short while, only to find itself gasping for air, slowly dying and realizing too late that it was only and solely meant for flying. Its life would be so tragic.

Don’t let yours be.

Live as how God designed you to be: For Him and exclusively for Him alone.

Out of the Blue

So it was supposed to be another tiring start of duty kind of day for a student-nurse like me. Like any other duty-days, I dropped by the pharmacy to buy sterile gloves. I was still a little bit groggy and my mind is at point blank. I hit myself by the racks and gosh did I look so clumsy.

I was wearing my white hospital-duty uniform with my name plate on. It had my name, school and expected graduation year engraved on it.

While ordering the gloves over the counter, a guy suddenly asked me about this particular clinical instructor from my school. I was taken aback. Do I even know this guy? Probably not. So I asked him if he ever was a nursing student from my school and surprisingly, he was. He was 4 years ahead of me so by the time I got into that college, he already graduated. He’s currently a medical student. Yes guys, he aims to be a doctor someday and then out of the blue, after a 20-second silence between us he told me:

“Pag-Med oyy.”

In English, dear friends, that sentence meant:

“Go take up Medicine.”

What? What’s this guy saying out of the blue? Me? Medicine? I can hardly pass this nursing course. I’m surprised he even said that.

You see, it was only two days ago when I asked God if I should take up medicine at all. So whatever this random person told me had become really significant to me. I don’t even know his name. Errrr, I forgot to ask him. My bad.

So really, I was wondering if this was God answering my prayer or was it just coincidental?

What do you guys think?

Night Thoughts.


 

I couldn’t sleep. My thoughts are swimming deeper through the night. I just wanna share to you a bit about what I’ve been thinking of.


 

Sometimes, drifting away from God is a slow fade. That’s why most fails to notice it.

It’s like a poison.  You compromise a little here and there then soon you realize you’ve drowned yourself with “fun” because it really was fun. It was fun that wasn’t bad but then fun turned out to be what you thirst for, you compromise more, it makes you take two, three, four steps away from God little by little without perceiving it at all. Then fun becomes more fun.
“There’s nothing wrong with fun!we tell ourselves but then fun takes us distances away from God and then suddenly,

fun hurts.

It hurts a lot.

Because fun is nothing compared to joy. Fun can take us momentarily to glorious heights, it entertains us like we matter, it treats us like how we want to be treated but with God, we’ve known joy and joy is lasting, beautiful and genuine. Joy may cause us to be neglected and rejected by the world telling us we’re such a bore but nothing can compare to how sweet it is to be there.


Taking steps towards God is such a hard thing to do. It’s hard because it demands humility and humility hurts because it touches our pride.

We’ve been proud too long, thinking we can be fine without God, maybe it’s time to crush our pride, take a good look. God is still holding out His hand for you, for me too.

Goodnight.