I just got back from the habit of finishing a book in one month. And there was a day I was looking for a book to read from my bookshelf. And voila! I saw Pastor Dan Chun’s book about how to pick spouse and it sounds interesting. So I read it.
I believe that there are three major decisions in life that we have to make.
Master: To whom will I dedicate my life?
Mission: What is my purpose or passion in life?
Mate: Who will be my spouse?
To whom will I dedicate my life? If you can answer this question, the chances are you are on the right path. If you know who your Master is, in my case, it’s Christ. It will be easy for me to know what I was made for and my core values.
But for the spouse, it’s hard. Because it’s critical. It will make or break your future. So seek counsel from your friends and pray.
Now, have you ever ask yourself what kind of spouse are you looking for? In reality, it wasn’t easy. It takes a village to find a spouse!
In Proverbs 31:10 says “A good woman is hard to find and worth far more than diamonds.”
With lots of information from the internet and sensationalist, and new age speakers who always talks about the romantic relationships just like the Mr. Speaker told the young girl to just say yes to the person, how will I know if that is right? Are there any guidelines that we can follow?
Fortunately, there is. So stop listening to those speakers whose trying to persuade you that there is a perfect formula to have a good marriage or relationship because the Bible itself talks a lot about it. I’m not going to share Bible verses here and bombard you with theological concepts, I’m just sharing you some practical guidelines from Dan Chun’s book in which most of them came from the Bible.
1. Don’t get married to be fulfilled. Get married to fulfill the other person.
Marriage is not about finding the one who will complete you. If you combine two less lonely people in the world, you will get two lonely people, it’s not fine, right? Jesus is the only one who can complete you.
2. To be lonely as a single is better than being lonely as a married. It’s painful to be lonely inside a marriage.
Here some of the ways you can maximize your season as a single person.
3. Marrying the wrong person can be very, very hard.
4. Be the person you want to marry. Work on the things you need to deal with before marriage.
The question is not what I like or what are my standards, the question should be, Am I becoming the person I want to marry? Am I becoming the person in my own standards for my potential spouse?
5. The greatest advantage you have in finding a spouse is knowing yourself.
6. No one will ever fill the void you have for the love you want or need. Only God can do that.
7. Here’s where my 3 C’s come to play in: Character, Competency, Conversations. Look for these three things.
Character: is the person has a good character? How does he or she deal with pressure? Did he or she burst out in anger over small things? How do he or she react to difficult situations?
Competency: Is this person has a job? How he or she is with it? Can he or she remain on the job longer? Can he or she master a skill? Or he or she is lazy and incompetent?
Conversations: Relationship is all about communication. If the person loves to argue, not listening and seems not interested to hear what you say and your stories, move on. Find a person whom you can talk to for hours about any topic that come out. If you find a person who listens to you, who is interested in you and your stories, don’t let go of that person.
8. Want to have a great date? Invite the person to go on hikes, mission trip or volunteering activities. See how the person responds to stress and being in the heat where things can go wrong.
9. Marry a listener. So much of communication is about listening and not talking nor nagging.
10. Look for a humility in a person. Humility is a sign of high self-esteem. Why? Here are the reasons:
- They don’t grab glory because they know their self-worth and they need not flaunt it.
- The feel good about themselves and don’t care about what people think about them.
- They don’t bring down others to their level just to destroy someone’s reputation.
- They also realize that their failures result from someone else’s successes.
11. People who don’t value someone’s opinion are lone rangers. People want to know they count. They want to know that they are valued and their emotions and thoughts.
12. Be willing to not always insist on getting your own way.
13. Forgiveness is not about condoning a harmful act or forget about the offense. You can’t forget an offense. Forgiveness is about giving your right to retaliate and leaving the judgment to God. God knows we cannot handle justice well so he offered to leave it to Him. He knows how to payback, God says, “Vengeance is mine.”
14. A person is trustworthy when his or her word is like a bond. He or she is a promise keeper, not a promise breaker.
15. The art of finding a spouse is not finding the right person but becoming the right person. It is not about what will you get from him or her but what can I offer to him or her?
All right! I hope you find something valuable from it. If you want to read his book, it is available on Amazon and some bookstores in the Philippines.
Let me leave you with a quote from Alfred Adler, “Follow your heart but take your brain with you.”
Feel free to share this with your friends who are going to marry or on the season of looking for a spouse.
Last week, Monday, I spent my holiday together with my friends and new found friends inside the community of singles from our church.
‘Twas a whole day of fun and getting to know some of them through asking questions and playing games with them. As they said, you can only know the people for who they are by playing games with them.
When Singleness becomes a sickness
For so many years that I’ve been a Christian and spending time and ministering to some single men for years, and observing some of my friends who are single, most of them thought that singleness is a sickness.
Whether be it a single man or women, countless of them hoping they are in a relationship with someone, praying for that right man or woman to come.
Insecurity causes sickness
“Do I look like ugly?”, “Why there’s no man want to pursue me?”, “Why seems all the woman I approach doesn’t like me?” Ugh, insecurity kills. I have a lot of them. Insecurity sometimes hid in the form of pride or pity. And most of my insecurities appeared whenever someone compared me to others on a personal level.
That’s when you fill the hole in your heart with so many things. Then you became bitter with others who are in a relationship.
But I want you to think in a different way.
The Three Seasons of Life
There are only three seasons a man should have. The season you were studying as a student, the season you worked, the season when you will retire.
The first season, some say that when you were a student, you have a lot of time and energy but lack of resources. Since students rely on their parents for allowances.
The next season is you have enough money but lack time. Here’s adulting comes in. With so many responsibilities, we wanted for a more balanced life.
The last season is the season when you have a lot of money but lack time and energy.
There’s a beauty in every season but not everyone is maximizing it. Students often waste their youth by playing games, party, drinking sessions, etc. I’ve been there and done that.
Single people often waste their season by still acting as a student or not accepting their present season.
Instead of building themselves up, they keep wishing.
Instead of taking responsibility they keep getting away from it.
Instead of learning how to wait, they settled in the complexity of life that could give them anything in an instant.
How about the old ones? I don’t think they have enough time to waste. You see most of them maximizing the remaining years of their lives.
When I was a student, I was a gamer. I learned to play computer games when I was 15, became addicted to it, I learned to steal and lie because of it. Imagine, every time my mom asked me to buy something from the supermarket or grocery nearby. I often return to her after an hour because I have to go to the computer shop first!
When I became a young professional, I still play those games severely until I was 21. I spent all the money I earned to make sure my character becomes more powerful each painless purchase. I was starving yet my virtual player was powerful, isn’t ironic?
We often waste our time pursuing worthless pursuits because we didn’t have the wisdom how to number our days. You see, people often make excuses because they didn’t know their time. For example, if one person told you and he’s complaining because he cannot save money, then you told him to set aside 15 to 20% of his salary every month and he will tell you: “I am too young to think about it”, and when he gets old and starting to build his own family, “I have to send the kids to school.” And I guess that’s one of the reasons why most Filipino cannot save money.
Teach ourselves to number our days
In the Bible, it teaches us to number our days. It says in Psalm 90:12 “Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom.”
Brevity means shortness. Thus, the shortness of life. The question relies upon on how do we maximize this life we have?
1. Be faithful to your season.
Don’t jump in too quickly. Each of us has different time zones, don’t envy other’s time zone.
Imagine your life as a book. And an author wrote it. For instance, I am writing a novel. Joseph was my main character for this novel project. While Joseph while doing something, someone called him outside. (that’s his time) but it doesn’t mean I have the same timezone as Joseph has. I can write and finish the novel for hours and moved on to another novel project which has a different main character.
Hence, I am, as an author was outside of my character’s time zone. What seems days and years for Joseph was only the present for me. I don’t know if that makes sense to you, but I believe that is how God operates in our lives.
In every season of our lives, for God, it is all happening at the same time because He is outside our time. Knowing that God puts us inside the time and He watches us, we should be faithful in our season.
2. Have goals with deadlines.
Zig Ziglar once said, “If you aim at nothing you will hit it every time.”
A goal without a deadline is merely a wish. It’s hard to hit a deadline, but it makes us grow even more. For me, even the journey of achieving that goal will be painful and difficult, I press on towards that goal because I know if I was able to achieve that, it will bring fulfillment to me and I definitely grow as a person.
Wait a minute, why should I have goals and set a deadline for each of them when you said in the previous item that God has already ordained what will happen. Can I just rely on him and slack off anytime I want?
First, God is not a sort of dictator or someone who controls a puppet. He created mankind not to control them but for His own pleasure. For the sake of illustration, imagine an artist who painted his masterpiece. Anyone can see it, anyone can touch it, He can even show it the world that he is proud of it but he has no control what people will do with it. At the same time, God created us for His own pleasure. Though He created us in his own image and likeness, we are not like Him. He gave us the free will in order that we can love Him genuinely and voluntarily. True love is voluntary, so in order for us to be capable of loving God, we also had to be capable of something else, including rebellion/sin. A loving relationship must be a free-relationship. Would you like to be in a relationship that someone controls how you do everything?
So, even though God knew what choices we would make, if He actually wanted people to love him, then He had to give them the chance to do so. Otherwise, our entire existence would have been merely a thought experiment that didn’t turn out well—but that’s not why God created humanity. He wanted us to know and love Him.
3. Embrace failures.
Of course, life is not only about success, achievements, and joy. Without failure, we will not know what it likes to be successful. In the same way, without suffering we will not know what it feels to be happy.
Life is not as smooth sailing as it is. You will meet challenges along the way and you will fail every now and then.
But if you know that an Author has written already your story, what a comfort it brings to see life in a brighter perspective.
This reminds me of God’s plan for humankind ever since the very beginning of this world.
When the earth was only full of waters and there was only darkness, God made an expanse to separate waters and the heavens and created the land in the middle of it. Then he created birds of all kinds and animals of all kinds.
And he created man and woman out of the dust naked and vulnerable but they don’t feel it because they were sustained and being warmed by the presence of God. And God gave them the command to “fill the earth.”
The first man and woman failed and sin against God because a serpent deceived them to disobey God. Well, it doesn’t happen very quickly. The serpent (symbol for God’s enemy) has to twists and made God a liar, selfish and a dictator who doesn’t want His creature to be like Him.
The enemy knows when to attack the man and woman and that’s when they are out of the presence of God. Remember they are vulnerable and only sustained by God.
But despite that, God is so gracious. The mankind when punished, do all sorts of things to reach God and attempted to be like God but they failed. God brought chaos not because He wants it, but because He wants to restore everything in order.
Remember the command “fill the earth”? It won’t happen if God allows all mankind to live in the same location and speaks the same language.
The same story He has for us will continue to happen to reminds us that it all starts with Him and everything will end with Him.
Last July, I met with a friend and a mentor, his name is Jesse, a fellow toastmaster, a speaker, and a financial planner. We talk a lot about different things and what’s going on with our lives, what’s my plan, what are my dreams and aspirations. He even asked me when I could leave the corporate life.
Well, If it was not for the mission that God gave to stay in the marketplace for this season and with the present reality of my life that I have bills to pay, and dream house to build, I wouldn’t stay any longer. My advice is that take it step by step.
And then a thought came while listening to him that this person has achieved more than what I have achieved. Then in our circles, one of my friends also at a young age became a CEO of a company. Wow! I am so privileged that God has brought me to learn from this people. But then, I became insecure; I wish I have started early. I wish I have learned these things at a young age. How I wish, I did not apply for a job when I was a fresh graduate but rather start a business on my own. Ugh, wishful thinking.
Can you relate?. How terrible the feeling was when you are being surrounded with successful people that you thought about your own failures and what have you done in your life.
There is no wasted time for God
Then what he told me blew me away. He said, “Dhenn, it is not because you failed, or you missed the mark at that age, it’s just that at that young age, their season has come. In everything, there is a season right? A time to reap and a time to sow. Perhaps the time they were reaping, you were sowing experiences.”
He reminded me that there is no wasted time for God. He caused all things to happen at the right time. He caused all things to happen to work together for our good whether it is bad, painful or not.
Then I remember another friend came and said, “I’m so glad that God is doing great things in your life. I see some of it and He caused you to increase in every way but as I saw your life, I doubted what God is doing in my life. I became full of doubt whether I am walking according to His will or even fulfilling the calling He has for me. I had not the same success as you are.”
You are not me
I looked at him and asked him, “Do you think you will still full of doubts and it would feel you better if you see me living a terrible life and had been doing much worse in the past few years?” “Of course not.” He responded.
I said, “Sorry but I didn’t mean to offend you but your thinking is flawed. You said the other was true but the second is not. If the other is true, what I said must be true, because you are comparing yourself to me.”
“What happens in my life and what God will do with it has nothing to do with what God is doing in your life. You are not me, and I am not you.” I added.
Focus on what God is doing in your life
I remember a story of an employee who was constantly complaining that management is corrupt not listening to its employees and some of his colleagues are lazy and unproductive. And then he set a meeting with his manager about it.
All the way down, the manager listened to his complaints. Then the manager asked a favor from him. “Before you leave, can you give me two full glass of water, please?. Make sure there’s no spill will get into the floor not even a little.”
The employee came back and gave the glasses to the manager. Then the manager asked him, “While you were walking with both of your hands have full water of glass, do you see any employees who are unproductive? Do you see any of them gossiping around? Do you see the management scolding other employees?” “No there’s none.” The employee responded.
You will find that God rarely uses people whose primary concern is what others are doing. When God told Noah to build an ark, Noah did what God has told of Him, he didn’t complain that people are not believing him.
Judging others is a major waste of time. It halts progress. I’ve met and seen people doing that. They think they are doing better than the average person in which it makes them an average person.
It doesn’t mean that they don’t have what you have, doesn’t mean they are not successful. Your faults will never vanish by calling attention to the fault of others. In the same way, it doesn’t mean you don’t have what they have, doesn’t mean they are more successful than you are.
Don’t let others define your success. Don’t let other people tell you what you want. No one can build himself upon the faith or experience of another person.
Don’t measure your Failure as a person by what others have, and your success by what others haven’t. Keep that in mind.
Last Sunday, we watched “100 Tula Para Kay Stella”. Yes third-wheel ulit ako though I can watch movies alone. I don’t watch romantic movies cause I watch movies unless it will pick my interest to do so. But this time, I am determined to watch a local indie movie. I love indies! It depicts the reality of life. I love the plot, I love the story of a young man who fell in love with a young woman and wrote poems for her.
I can relate somehow as a certified introvert and a torpe before, I remember when I was in high school, I wrote a lot of letters for my crush in a piece of a notebook. And then I wrote everything about her on it. From poems to love letters. I know you want to know what happened and to cut the long story short, I failed to give the notebook to her because I found out she has a boyfriend already. Hahaha. The notebook? I burned that already.
So while watching the movie, I wrote as much as possible lessons that I learned from it. I believe not only in a relationship, we can apply these in our daily lives.
Disclaimer: Images are not mine. If you own any of these don’t hesitate to email me and will give the rightful ownership to you.
1. Tell it upfront.
For men, when you like someone, first pray about it then tell her when you’re ready to commit not when you’re lonely.
I like how Fidel wrote poems for her. He invested his emotions to Stella by fantasizing about her and wrote it in a poem. But he failed to tell her when in fact they have been together for so many times. He got the chance to tell her when Stella has married to other man and pregnant already, how devastating. If he could have told her early, it might be a happy ending.
Kaya ikaw brad, pag ready ka na sabihin mo na! Women will tell you if they don’t like you by rejecting you. If they don’t like you, assess yourself. Would you still like her despite the rejection? Then try again after some time, if not, stay away and move on. If you’re worried if you will still be friends after that? Most likely it depends on your decision and her decision. But according to what I have experienced, it’s possible but closeness to each other will take time to rebuild.
Just like in our daily lives, we Filipinos are man pleasers by nature. We fear rejection, we don’t like the feeling of hurting someone, we want to be at peace with everyone. But it’s not good most of the time when our friend is doing something wrong. Show care to them by telling them what it is.
In our careers, most managers today encourage open doors. Tell all your concerns and complaints. Share your career aspirations so they know how can they help you.
In everything, try to tell it up front. It is better to be clear so there will be no room for misunderstanding.
2. Have a deeper purpose in all that you will do.
Pursuing what you love while you are studying is not bad if you know how to manage your priorities.
I like how Fidel focused on his studies. He wanted to finish college. He did not allow any other circumstances to stop him from finishing it. He knows its purpose.
Unlike Stella who was a stubborn lady. All she wants is her dreams. To be famous, to perform in front of a large crowd, being applauded by many people. But for what? I observed that she lacks a deeper sense of her purpose.
It is important to have a purpose in your life. Why do you do what you do? It is better to know your “why” first. What I mean, the deeper purpose for your existence. A purpose that will give you a mission and vision bigger than yourself.
3. You need friends in your darkest nights.
You need friends whom you will turn to when everything goes wrong. I experienced the time when I was young that I don’t have friends to turn to. I felt alone, I felt no one loves me.
But thank God, He never let me be alone. Choose the people whom you want to be associated with. They will make or break you. Bad company corrupts good character. You become the average of the five people you spend time with.
4. A lost opportunity is a lost opportunity.
“Sayang!” When we lost an opportunity we often exclaimed this. But a lost is a lost. But instead of regretting it, grab it next time.
5. Don’t be a social climber who uses people to their own advantage to achieve your dreams.
Stella uses people to her own advantage. She entered a relationship with some men as a step towards fulfillment of her dreams.
Don’t be a social climber. Don’t be user-friendly. If you want to achieve your dreams, have genuine relationships with people who have the same interest and dreams as yours, who will help you and you will help as well. Be self-less serve them.
6. Don’t let your dreams become your purpose for your existence.
Stella’s purpose for her existence is her dreams of becoming a famous singer. How sad to know that she wasn’t able to achieve her dreams.
It’s okay to have dreams but don’t make it your world. Focusing too much on it will lead you to a frustrated life. Enjoy life, enjoy the journey.
7. Sometimes you don’t have to be desperate for an opportunity. Be ready. As opportunity comes not to those who seek it but those who are ready for it.
Fidel doesn’t have plans to become a singer, but one of his classmates discovered that he has a talent for singing. Then he started to have gigs with his band.
Don’t be desperate. If it’s meant for you, it’s for you.
8. Don’t make someone becomes your world.
Fidel revolves his life around Stella. He made her his world. I remember what he said to Stella: “Corny man sabihin, pero ikaw ang mundo ko.”
To be honest, in the past, I made someone to be my world. Devastating experience. From there on, I learned not to make someone my world. Because in the end, a person can love you or will be there as long as they can but cannot be with you forever.
That’s where I learn to make Jesus my world. Everything I do revolves around him. He is the reason for my existence. He was there before I was born. He knows a lot about myself more than I know myself. He loves me more than any other person in this world by giving up His life for me.
To end this blog, I want to leave you one of the best lines from the movie:
This is true in some ways. Ang nakakatuluyan natin is yung taong gusto ni Lord para sa atin.
Have you watched the movie already? Share in the comments what you have learned as well! If you haven’t watched, this is the last day, you must watch it!
Till next time.
Two years ago, I’ve created my own dream board or also known as “vision board”. If the term is not yet familiar with you, let me define it first for you. A vision board is a collage of images, words, or anything that helps you visualize who you want to be and what kind of life you want to live.
Because I’m kind of a person who kinda likes everything must have a strategy and must execute it regardless of circumstances, I don’t know what kind of life I will have without having goals for myself. If you are a visionary and ambitious person like me, having a vision board will help you a lot especially when you want clarity over your life.
Just to share with you, here is my vision board:
It’s been 7 years when I was dreaming and praying to have a car of my own, I’ve already have that. Now I keep dreaming and praying to have my own home, to be able to travel the places a few people knew through mission trips, to be a motivational speaker, a family of my own with having two children, a company or non-profit organization of my own and so on. And I was sure of that, I have nothing to add to it.
So, how having your own vision board can help you?
- It brings clarity to your dreams.
- It will energize you.
- It allows you to visualize and feel your future self.
- It will serve as a great reminder for you on a daily basis that you need to hustle.
- It will serve as an inspiration to you to face challenges and go for an extra mile.
If you don’t have yet, create your own! I’m willing to help you and teach what I know. But it’s easy, promise!
As my favorite author once said, “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” — C.S. Lewis
In my recent article on “How to Survive Every Month Financially” I was shocked that my article has gone viral. I checked the stats, and it garnered a total of 200,000+ views plus my email list grew by almost 300%. Wow, just wow.
First, if you’re one of the people who read, liked and shared my article, I would like to thank you. May God bless you more! It would not go viral without you.
Here are some comments I’ve received:
Thank you for those who left their message. You are truly an inspiration to me.
I’ve seen also some of the comments that well a valid comment why manga is being compared to books. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not comparing them, it’s just that books encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone, it taught me to stop wishing and start working on my dreams, and it taught me to prepare for life and how to be an adult.
With regards to investing, I’m not an expert to answer all of your questions as I’m only basing them on my experiences and wisdom received from my friends and mentors who are “financially-savvy”, but I would be glad to write some of the things I know in the next coming weeks.
I’ve said to my previous article that at the age of 20, it came to my senses that I need to grow up. How to adult sabi nga nila.
Now how I began to be an adult? I started reading books and learn from other’s experiences. That’s the first thing you should do; educate yourself.
And that’s number one lacking in our country today. People would normally go to what is easy that’s why in the end they left frustrated. Without going on to the process of becoming the person you wanted to be, you’ll be frustrated, disappointed and probably you might give up too soon.
Now, I want to share with you the ABC’s of adulting or how it is to live like an adult. I got some of this from Seth Godin. Brace yourselves as some might get you feel uncomfortable.
A. Anxiety is experiencing failure in advance. Would you like to fail? Tell yourself about the worst possible outcome you will ever face. It doesn’t make you better.
B. Balance, there’s no such thing as balanced-life or work-life balance. Lose it and make your priorities right instead.
C. Commitment is the only thing that gets you through the chasm. Kung gusto mong mag-ipon at mag-invest at magtagumpay sa buhay, maging committed ka. Panindigan mo yan!
D. Dance with fear. Shake it off!
E. Effort. You need to make an effort.
F. Feedback. Instead of using it to please everyone, use it to further push you to overcome what you fear and embrace what you’re capable of.
G. Give cheerfully. The purpose why God is blessing us with material wealth is to give it to others. Be a blessing.
H. Heroes are people who take risks for the right reasons. Don’t be a hipster who hasn’t risked a thing so they never fail.
I. Always Initiate. Pick yourself. Take initiative. No one is going to pick you and say “hey I choose you!”. Hindi ka Pokemon.
J. Joy. Be joyful from being satisfied. Discontentment will bring you trouble.
K. Kill. Kill your bad habits by replacing it with good habits.
L. Love. Love like Jesus. We can’t, but when you have a relationship with Jesus, makakaya mo.
M. More is bad. It leads you to the world of scarcity. Do you know why some people never satisfied? Because they want more!
N. Sometimes people answered you with “No” because it feels safe. But say yes to possibility and yes to risk. Nothing is ever worth it without taking the risk.
O. One more chance. It’s okay to fail, it’s okay to be rejected. Be better then try it again, one.more.chance (read it slowly para ma-feel mo).
P. We all need pain. We will not grow if we will not experience pain. You will not experience breakthrough if there are no “break me” moments.
Q. Quality matters. Want to improve the quality of your life? Read quality books! Wag yung pocket book na iistir-up ka lang tapos tatanungin mo sarili mo bakit single ka pa rin hanggang ngayon.
R. Respect yourself. Know your worth. Stop trying to fit in. Be different.
S. Share like giving, share what you have.
T. Teach what you know, practice what you teach. The most effective way to remember a lesson is by applying it and teach it to others.
U. Unlearn. There are things you need to un-learn. Be like an empty cup. Be ready to learn.
V. Vulnerable. Being vulnerable is the only way we can gain trustworthy friends and mentors. How can I teach you if you’re not opening yourself? How can we be friends if you’re closing yourself to me? Open up yourself, but don’t be too soon.
W. Work like you never work before. If someone asked you to help him, go for an extra mile.
X. Xerocopy another term for a photocopy. Don’t be a copycat!
Y. Youth. Don’t waste your youth. Make it meaningful and purposeful. Learn to number your days.
Z. Zip your lip. Learn to listen with your heart.
So far that’s it. I hope it will help you in some way in your quest to be adult. Haha. Till next time.