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Posts Tagged ‘Faith’


I remember my last session of chemotherapy done on a December morning at the UST Hospital Benavidez Cancer Institute.  It was a Tuesday, the  Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  My medical oncologist called it my graduation.  Graduation from six cycles of chemotherapy and oral chemo drugs, graduation from the pain brought by the IV injected every three weeks, graduation from various laboratory tests before each cycle of chemo. But it did not end there. I have to go back to my surgical oncologist for regular check-up until five years ago when I totally lifted everything up to God that I am truly cured  and well.  It was a nice feeling to be able to pick up and do regular routines without  having to worry about one’s health, without having to worry about doctor and hospital visits. I hate hospitals. I can’t stand waiting too long outside a doctor’s office with other patients who have their own stories to tell.   Seeing other patients is depressing enough.

When you are sick, sometimes depression sets in but your belief and faith that you will be cured  of your illness helps to combat those feelings. When you believe that you will get well, you will.  I started this blog sharing a bit of what I went through more than seven years ago. I wonder sometimes about those friends I met here who underwent the same journey as I did. Where are they now? I haven’t heard from them for quite a while.  There was a time when some of my posts would be full of sharing about their plights as cancer patients and survivors or some members of the family sharing about it. I miss those because I would want to know how they are now.

Some people say things happen for a reason. I believe though that God allows us to feel the pain of being sick so we’ll get closer to Him. It’s when you are at your lowest that God lifts you up. I remember those lines from  Footprints in the Sand:

One night I had a dream…

I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord, and Across the sky flashed scenes from my life. For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand; One belonged to me, and the other to the Lord. When the last scene of my life flashed before us, I looked back at the footprints in the sand. I noticed that many times along the path of my life, There was only one set of footprints.

I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in my life This really bothered me, and I questioned the Lord about it. “Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you, You would walk with me all the way; But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, There is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why in times when I needed you the most, you should leave me.

The Lord replied, “My precious, precious child. I love you, and I would never, never leave you during your times of trial and suffering. When you saw only one set of footprints, It was then that I carried you.

These word often  remind me  to be always grateful for even the smallest blessing that happens in my life.

In times of our needs, we must look back and remember,  He was walking along with us, carrying us in His shoulder.  The times we thought we were alone, the times we thought we carried  the burden, the times we thought we were so helpless with things which we can’t avoid, the times of need, I believe those were the times He carried us through.

 

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Happy New Year and Merry Christmas!  New Year in the Catholic liturgical calendar begins each year with  the season of Advent.

Today is the first Sunday of Advent. We went to mass early and it was cold outside. There was this early morning breeze  while we walked  the distance from our house to the subdivision gate and from the tricycle terminal to the church.  Advent season which begins today and  ends on December 24  lets us  prepare ourselves to receive God’s gift of Jesus. It is a time of “getting ready” for the celebration of Christmas.

advent-wreath-editThe four candles represent  the four Sundays in preparation for  Christmas. The purple color has traditionally been the color symbolizing repentance and fasting.The first purple candle is the Candle of  Hope, the second one is the Candle of Preparation while the fourth purple candle is the Candle of Love. The third candle which is lighted on Gaudete Sunday is called the Candle of Joy. Pink is a joyful color.

November is coming to a close, gently folding its leaves to welcome the cold December days. Ah, the joys of waiting for Christmas! The joys of waiting for the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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I hope it is not too late to say “happy birthday  Mama Mary”. 

For those of you who read  my blog regularly, you might have noticed that since 2011, I’ve been getting upward spike every time I blog about Mama Mary’s birthday and the bulk of views comes from my country. I love Mama Mary.  Yes, every September 7 and September 8, I get notifications from  WordPress. Last year was the highest so far with a total of 4,893 in one day alone.

WordPress has sent me notifications  since the other day and again I am amazed by the amount of views I got until this morning. This one is the latest so far with this message:

Your blog, DREAMS AND ESCAPES, appears to be getting more traffic than usual! 303 hourly views – 6 hourly views on average
A spike in your stats.

wordpress

Your blog, DREAMS AND ESCAPES, appears to be getting more traffic than usual! 303 hourly views – 6 hourly views on average A spike in your stats

Translated into numbers, I got 2,020 views the other day and 2,713 views as of this morning. It is still moving upward. Thank you Mama Mary, my blog posts about you are instrumental in these numbers.

May you all be touched with everyday blessings.

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It’s a wet and cold morning and it’s been raining on and off since the start of the weekend.  Hanging habagat  (southwest monsoon) is definitely here. It was a busy weekend though. It’s a good thing we were able to finish some gardening chores early.

When you are forced to stay at home because of the weather, you either keep busy or you relax to your heart’s content.  I did both…haha! Aside from gardening, I was able to find time to read two books over the weekend and to watch two movies on YouTube.  Yes, you heard it right.  For the first time in so many years, I caught myself finding some inspirational movies that would lift the soul and strengthen faith. The Song of Bernadette did just that. I could not remember the last time I watched this movie. I found a version in Blu-Ray. The Song of Bernadette is a 1943 drama film that tells the story of Bernadette Soubirous, a young visionary of Lourdes  who later became a saint. From February to July 1858 in Lourdes, France, she  reported eighteen visions of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This  film is based on the true story of Bernadette Soubirous, and adapted from the book written by  Franz Werfel.  What a lovely, lovely way to spend two hours straight infront of my computer and see this film.

Lately, I was lucky enough to find more books on faith and redemption and how beautiful life could be  despite the treacherous journey  and the unfaithfulness of mankind.  Alicia Ruggieri  is new on my list  of authors  and I like her writing style. She writes grace-filled and Christ-centered fiction. If you have time, try to read her A Time of Grace trilogy. The first book made me really cry and think of life, it’s beauty and its angst. The Fragrance  of Geraniums is such a beautiful book.  I am in the middle of reading the second one entitled All Our Empty Places  which picks up the story where it left off in the first one. I wonder if I’ll be able to find the third and the concluding book in the trilogy. I am not really into trilogies but this one is worth it. There are those stories that make you feel they’re real and you get into them like you would a story of a friend or yours, you feel the sadness, the triumphs and the pain. You feel that hope is not a dead thing but a journey that makes you look forward to another day.

A friend  suggested another writer and poet. The blog is truly inspiring. I searched the link. You may visit it here.

It’s raining still  and I am caught with these words, we are all special in God’s eyes.  God’s grace overflows.

 

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I’ve always been in awe of candle light photography. I remember those photos I took of lighted candles at the St. Padre Pio Chapel near our place.

Watching the flickering flames somehow brings that inner peace in one’s soul, the quiet of the moment, fervent prayers uttered, the beauty of the Now.

A niece who is vacationing in France sent me some photos of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in Paris and these is one of them. She knows that I love subjects like this and she told me, “I took those photos for you auntie”.  She hasn’t shared it on other social media sites, she said I could use them any way I want, be it on my blog or as personal collection.  Thank you Annabelle.

I am imagining myself right there at this moment, reflecting about life, its beauty and its angst while watching the flames sway and dance.

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Poised to spread her wings

ready for flight

wanting to explore and discover

what life is all about,

But she is shivering in the cold

and wet morning.

Maybe,

Time would be kind enough

And let the sun show its face

so she could fly.

 

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