“dream” guy

I did not have a good night’s rest last night as my dad and I were busy tinkering with his new gadget: the new iPad. It was 4am when I finally hit the sack and even then my mind and my eyes refused to cooperate. They wanted to stay awake. Finally at half past four in the morning I slept, I think. I woke up early again around 6am, went back to sleep and woke up again around 8 or 9.

But what struck me in those drifting in between sleep and waking up was that I dreamt of the “man” and he was nothing like the men who fit my type. Physically, he was far too different. I have always been drawn to skinny men. I don’t like men with extra “fat” on them. I have always been drawn to skinny, lanky men.

Next, the guy in my dream was not the sensitive, serious, artistic types that I like and prefer. He was outgoing, warm and funny and he liked hugging me in that dream. You see I have always liked serious men. Men who are more artistic and creative in temperament rather than the “hi, how do you do” types.

What’s more was that it happened in Thailand where I supposedly went to for an outreach with kids. When I met him there IN THE DREAM, I wasn’t even remotely interested in him because he was totally the opposite of what I wanted in a guy.

It was only when I woke up and thought to myself “what a weird dream that was” that it hit me that probably the guy God will give me will be far different from what I prefer and I’ll meet him during the most unexpected of times. Another thing that jiggled my mind when I woke up was that in the dream, my brother J liked the man and approved of him, telling me “he likes you, tsi” and “he will take care of you”. That is something. You see my bro is quite outspoken when he doesn’t approve of a guy I’m seeing and won’t mince words.

I said a prayer after processing the dream and how I felt afterwards. In my mind I kept telling myself “he’s not my type” but I felt loved, respected, at peace and unafraid. Some of the things I have been asking God to be present in my relationship with my future husband after quite a tumultuous and confusing experience in the past.

Lord Jesus, wherever he is, guide him, protect him and make him into the man You want him to be.:) Amen. I’m excited.

Like a Lion {David Crowder band}

Verse:
Let love explode and bring the dead to life
A love so bold
To see a revolution somehow.
Let love explode and bring the dead to life
A love so bold
To bring a revolution somehow

Pre- chorus
Now I’m lost in your freedom
This world I’ll overcome.

Chorus:
My God is not dead
He’s surely alive
He’s living on the inside
Roaring like a lion

Verse 2:
Let hope arise and make the darkness hide
My faith is dead
I need a resurrection somehow

Bridge:
Let Heaven roar and fire fall
Come shake the ground
With the sound of revival

Here’s sharing with you guys one of my favorite songs that we sing in church.  It’s safe to say that this is one of my “theme songs” of my life in this season. 🙂 Enjoy!  OUR GOD IS ALIVE.  HE’S LIVING ON THE INSIDE ROARING LIKE A LION! Isn’t that just awesome and oh so mind-blowing!? 🙂

I could listen to this song for hours and sing this song over my nation whenever I’m so tempted to wallow in self-pity and hopeless just by looking at the social realities that “accost” me whenever I go out into the streets.

The teenagers who are strong but choose to beg in the streets.  Those two young high school students who flagrantly disobey traffic rules and walk across the flyover inspite of the speeding jeepneys and cars without a care.  The conductor and the jeepney driver who obey traffic rules only when the traffic enforcer is there and when he’s not around, ignore the traffic signs and lights.  When I see these things, despair floods my heart. Why? When we were in college, my sister and I were convinced that the traffic behavior and attitudes of a nation reflect its culture and how we look at authority, submission and obedience.  This was confirmed when a study came out about this.

But God…as always, without fail, tells me “don’t look at the physical.  Call out things that are not as though they are.  Set your eyes on heavenly things.”

Thank God for His Word or else I would have said things that would have put another nail on the coffin called “Philippines” but I refuse to dwell on what I see and believe that this nation has hope and that one day – soon – God is going to visit my beloved Philippines and turn it upside down, right side up.  I am hoping, believing and praying.  We need a love that is so bold that it will bring a revolution in this nation. Yes, I’m seeing trickles of change in the land now but I’m praying for a revolution that will bring radical change in the roots of our culture, our thoughts and our identity as a people.

There’s got to be more, Teacher

As a nation, we need a curriculum that demands more from our students than the mere memorization of facts, and a move toward a curriculum that supports deep and meaningful understanding of content, creative and critical problem-solving skills.

from Janet English quoted in “What is a Good Teacher Worth?

I think her sentiments are not only what’s needed for American education but also for the Philippine educational system, too.  As we are now implementing the K-12 program, there is still a need for teachers to focus on critical thinking and, I think, the more important quality to be developed – a love for learning – in the students.

I think students who are inspired to know more, learn to ask and probe issues and matters at hand rather than students who just memorize are the ones that will go on to invent new stuff, come up with new ways of doing things and shake the prevailing mindsets.

We must teach kids and students to think, dream and connect the dots instead of settling for just parroting us and what they read in the books.

one of my practicum classes in a public night high school 🙂

My happy thought: Teaching :)

There are a lot of things I don’t want to admit.

One of them is missing those teaching moments in a classroom and another one is missing the kids I taught.

I’m not teaching in the classroom set-up right now though I’m still “teaching” as a tutor. The set-up is quite different from the classroom thingy but I have to admit that the fun and the challenges of imparting what you know and understand to these kids are the same.

The “I miss ’em” syndrome hit me last Sunday when I attended a bash {quite a bash} of a former student who turned 4 years old. Most of the kids I had taught last year were there and it was such a joy and a privilege to hug them and talk to them even for just a minute. The hugs and the innocence and the refreshing candor of kids are just one of the many things that a preschool teacher misses.

Teacher Kha and I with E during C’s birthday bash. We had our photo taken since he’ll be leaving for the US for good. 😦 No smiles from E here. 🙂

Last night, I got to sharing what was in my heart with my dad and my mom about missing my former students and wanting to open a preschool. That is the second thing I have to admit. I want to start a school. Something that never crossed my mind in the last 12 years I’ve been a teacher.

I’d like to have a preschool or a daycare where children from less privileged families can go to school by paying a minimal fee of P300/month. How I will manage to operate in those figures will take a miracle from heaven.

For two years, I taught in a preschool that catered to kids who come from very affluent families – expat kids and children of businessmen and politicos. It was a delight and so much fun to teach in that environment where we had a lot of resources {papers in all colors, all kinds of art materials, educational toys and manipulatives and every learning resource necessary to catch the kids’ attention and inspire them to love learning}, meaningful learning experiences and good facilities but oftentimes I would catch myself dreaming and thinking “God, how do I make this available to those kids from the slums or from the streets?” I am praying and waiting that I’ll have wisdom and the answers from heaven to make this a reality.

It hit me then that God has a purpose why I’ve handled all four levels. In the past, I’ve looked at it as signs of not knowing what level I should be in but this time I am starting to see that God set me up. Now, it is a privilege for me to have taught 2.5-3.5 year olds, high school students for a practicum stint, college students for the most of my teaching life and now this new level, teaching or tutoring elementary students.

I’d like to confess that the times that I look forward to most when tutoring is that time when we’re done with all the assignments and it’s what I call “laughing time” where we horse around, they ask the funniest questions, goof around with my camera phone and just enjoy that time with each other. That is also one of the times that I miss with my college students. Me just sitting on a bench, them approaching me and talking…talking about everything and anything under the sun. I think it’s the humanity factor and stamp that we teachers enjoy the most. It’s relating and connecting with your students and enjoying that moment that leaves an imprint on you.

So as I enjoy this season of my life where I am teaching in a non-classroom set-up, I’d like to share some snapshots that always, always make me smile or laugh out loud when I look at them remembering those times I spent with young people. One of my regrets though is that the first five years I taught, camera phones were not that nice plus the fact that I didn’t have one so I didn’t have a lot of pics from my early teaching years. Still those moments are forever engraved in my heart and they will always be one of my happy thoughts.

Unforgettable photo walk aka exercise along Colon with my Philippine History class 🙂

Super loved this batch!

Practicum in a public high school 🙂 ’twas such fun and challenging!

My Abellana High {evening class} students, DPE Practicum

What can I do?

I was browsing through a blog today and stumbled on this graphic designer‘s book cover design and this title immediately got my attention.

What can I do? by David Livermore {published by Zondervan}

Isn’t it amazing how God speaks to us in so many ways and not just once?  I remember Him asking Peter “Do you love me?” three times and Him answering Peter “Feed my sheep” thrice, too.

Today was the third time God spoke to me particularly about something this week but one’s that been burning in my heart for years now.  I’ve been meaning to blog about, ponder and plan about but never got around except to praying about it which is the first step, actually.

I’m talking about homelessness and poverty.  For years, I’ve always teared up or felt so down whenever I see a child or families sleeping on the sidewalks.  I’m teary-eyed because I don’t know what to do or where to start from.

The closest thing I’ve ever done to help them was almost 7 to 8 years ago when I required my Rizal classes in USC {University of San Carlos} to go out to the streets and help someone in need as their final exam requirement.  We went out distributing food like sandwiches, food packs like noodles but it was only a one-time thing.  What is in my heart is a long-term solution to this, something sustainable and one that can truly uplift and change the lives of the people in the sidewalks.

The first thing that God used to remind me of this desire and dream of mine was a video posted by zerothreetwo in tumblr about this certain, middle-aged man in his briefs washing his shirts in dirty, canal water in the middle of the streets with nobody even approaching him to hand him a shirt or do something to help him.

What should we do?  We must do something.

Second wake-up call was last night’s prayer during our cell group meeting.  Tita Nene, my cell group leader, shared how she noticed more people and families sleeping/living on the sidewalks.  We prayed that God would give us solutions and answers to this social problem.

I was crying last night because I didn’t just want to stop at praying.  I was asking God for a clear-cut solution to this.  I know our prayers were already moving the hand of God but I’m asking that God would awaken individuals, organizations, businesses and politicians to look at them through the eyes of compassion and DO SOMETHING.

I did not write about it last night when I got home even when I’ve been meaning to until this afternoon when I stumbled on this book cover and I knew – without a shadow of a doubt -that God was again reminding me of this.

The book was the third and last wake-up call.  Yes, I will continue to pray but starting today, I am going to write about it, discuss this with my dad {for the nth time} about what we can do and I’m going to start talking about this with my friends.

I don’t really know what to do but my eyes and my heart are on God because I know He has the answers and I know that He loves these homeless people and has great plans for them.

The world is groaning for redemption. Fatherless children long
to be loved. Trafficked women hope for freedom. Hungry families
crave food. There’s something desperately amiss in our world, but
there’s hope. A global perspective combined with your God-given
interests, relationships, and experiences is a part of how Christ will
redeem the world we share. – David Livermore, What Can I Do?

12 IN 2012

1.  Continue to paint. Hmm like every day.  Today I did four and found only two to my liking.

2.  If only I had the time I would like to write a children’s story and do the illustrations.  I’d like to write a story about Jesus, His love and His Kingdom in childlike terms.  Kinda like what Max Lucado wrote but more on the simple side like honoring parents, obeying God and Daddy and Mommy and being kind to cite a few themes.

3.  I’d like to start making  birthday or greeting cards regularly {handmade in watercolor + Sharpies}.  I’m thinking of making one for my sister for her birthday this July. 🙂 Cards that celebrate God’s faithfulness and mercy for you and for me!

4.  Make or paint artworks, bookmarks and note pads of flowers {‘coz they’re easy} and landscapes with Bible verses or quotable quotes about God, His love, His goodness and faithfulness!

5.  Go back to learning how to play the piano.  As soon as my schedule and budget will permit me, I’ll start to enroll in piano lessons. 🙂 tee hee!

6.  Ask my mom to let me do the laundry, rather, teach me how to use the washing machine.  Why?  My mom is an OC when it comes to washing clothes.  She never and I repeat never wants any other hand than hers to touch our clothes.  She does not trust anyone to do the laundry.  Well, I understand.  IMO, she’s the best laundrywoman there is.  Our clothes always smell fresh and clean since she washes them two to three times with soap before rinsing.  Imagine the hours she puts in, huh.

7.  Continue to write and do research about Cebuano history.  Just tidbits and pieces just to keep my historian-side-of-the-brain sharpened while I am on hiatus as a History teacher this season.

8.  Pray and Wait. 🙂

9.  Finally come up with a project plan or a framework for that daycare dream that’s burning in my heart.  Okay, the secret’s out.  I still dream of starting that daycare where parents who cannot afford the more expensive preschool setup can send their kids to school.  My friend and I are thinking of charging them like P300/month for 10 months.  The miracle here is to keep that rate and still come up with a good facility, resources and supplies for the kids.  That said I’ve yet to go to DSWS or the LGU where I’m part of to ask for the requirements.

10.  Pursue or enroll in graduate studies in Education next semester.

11.  Write my Jeepney Chronicles consistently.  Say like every week, perhaps?

12.  As early as now {June to July}, I’d like to scour the city particularly in Freedom Park for something I can paint on or decorate so I can give ’em as Christmas gifts.  Still thinking and looking at this time.

Wow, thinking about what to do is something but I think writing and stating them is a different thing altogether.  It makes it doable just because you finally see it in visible terms instead of all these ideas just up in your head.

Habakkuk 2:2-3:  “…Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.  For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end – it will not lie.  If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.” – ESV

A New One

Sometimes you just have to let go of the familiar and the safe  or what you’ve been used to to see what’s on the other side.

You will never get on a new path or start a new journey if you do not say goodbye to the old.

And once you’ve said goodbye, burn your bridges. Burn the ships. No Plan Bs.

Cut clean.  Start anew.

All you have to do now is to look and move forward. What’s waiting on the horizon is far greater than what you’ve let go. 🙂

{Just something I learned this season}