Hello 2013, Goodbye 2012


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One of the things I love most about having January 1 as my birthday is that I get to reflect on the past year not only as a “calendar year” but a full year in my life. That fact appeals to my OC post-it-obsessed self. Hihi.

I’ve told people that for me, 2012 felt so short yet so many things happened. It’s feels a little crazy thinking that we only have 2 hours left until we welcome 2013. I sort of want to hold on to a clock and suffocate it enough so that it won’t let this day end just yet but alas, time flies. Next thing I know, I just wasted 1 minute of this thinking about what I was supposed to type for that previous sentence.

So far, I can say that 2012 is my favorite year. During my short 2011 review on Tumblr, I said that:

Come 2012, I will prepare myself more as I know that Satan will be working double time. I declare that NO WEAPON FORMED AGAINST ME SHALL REMAIN. I will continue fighting the good fight of the faith and running the race!

Truly, though I thought 2011 was already my crazy rollercoaster ride, 2012 was even more…kaloka (for the lack of a better term).

Spiritual

Jesus Christ has been and will always be my hero. No changes to that this year. Well, no changes to that…ever.

I thank God that I was able to do prayer and devotion this 2012, though during the latter part of the year, I got so distracted with life that I didn’t really have quality time with Him. It was nice that I got to use both idle and busy times to talk to God (e.g. while riding the cab, while reviewing a SOW/CR, while talking to a difficult PM, etc). I never understood what they said that our “whole lives can be a prayer” but finally grasped that this year :)

For the first time ever in my entire life, I got to finish reading the entire Bible. I won’t claim to know everything in it by heart ’cause there are some chapters that I’ve read while half-awake, but I know that I got to know God more this year through His Word. I’ve always said in the past that I wanted to know Him more but I never made any effort to find stuff out about him (as compared to how I stalk my crushes, nakakahiya kay Lord that I don’t give Him much importance). 2012 has definitely been a good refresher. My 2 Bible School classes have also been helpful in teaching me how to get into the Bible. I’m very glad that I got to enroll and I’m hoping to take even more classes next year (or maybe go full-time, yes?).

I also promised God that I will use my skills for my ministry not out of obligation but finally out of love. I led the NCD Programs team and I definitely learned a lot. I made a deal with my leader that I will take on anything as long as it doesn’t require me to “do something” every week. That was the set-up during the first few months but I eventually found myself waking up early during Sundays to be the Program Coordinator during the first service, and attending all three services. It’s a miracle, considering how I was always an hour late  when attending church in the past years. And, I love my PC team! I’m glad that we’ve grown to not just be ministry-mates but we’ve all truly been friends :) We also got to recruit Ava, Kuya John-John and Yuri this year, and they were awesome additions to the group!

I had a preaching stint with Muning in February. And, until now, I can’t believe that it actually happened. God’s so cool. I also got to attend the Youth Convention in Davao–something that made a big impact in my life calling-wise. And, who would forget about the Foursquare Foundation projects? It had everyone up and about almost everyday! We staged 3 The Witness concerts and had all these discipleship activities going on. I didn’t think we’d make it alive by the end of the year but truly, God is faithful to complete the good work that He has started in our church.

I had regular meetups with Camcam during the earlier months to discuss PDL but we eventually got busy :( We never lost touch though and I am still very grateful to God for giving me a friend like her :) Essa “returned” in my life as well this year and it was nice to have gotten to talk to her about matters in life and to have brought her to FNL :)

Our Catch-Up group has been having a varied attendance but until Q3 of the year, we still regularly met up. There were some hiccups along the way, but God is our restorer! It’s truly a blessing to have people who know and care about the real you.

One of God’s surprises for 2012 was our Connect & Grow group. I’ve shared about our progress through this blog but I am still almost in tears when I recall how I have finally allowed myself to be used to witness to others in the office. I don’t really have a lot of close girly friends and I don’t have brothers, so my C&G family has really been a welcome addition to my life. I can say that I’ve matured in a lot of aspects of my life through this group. I love them all from the bottom of my heart!

In relation to that, I got to attend Friday Night Light @ CCF Makati with some C&G folks for about 2-3 months. I eventually got booked with Friday meetings in my local church so I had to give this up but I learned a lot from attending a different church. And, the young men and women have also been inspiring in terms of their dedication to ministry, their view on relationships, and their faith. How I hope to be able to join FNL again!

I also got gifted with a Life-Giver Group during the second half of the year. I handled teenage girls as they start their walk with God. It was very challenging at first since I found myself not being able to relate with them anymore but God is great as His strength was made evident in my weakness. The girls have been like daughters (seriously) to me and I pray that I may see them grow up to be like Jesus! :) And, I thank God for Kuya Albert as well as his assistance in our LGG has been helpful. I wouldn’t be able to do home visits and field trips without his help!

And of course, my big blessing this year is definitely my Care Circle. Throughout our ~10 months of togetherness, I can say that we’ve really gotten close to me, to each other, and to the Lord! It makes me tear up whenever I realize how much God has been working through our CC. He’s been with us throughout our joys, tears, victories and defeat. I get burdened at times but when I remember that I ought to love as Jesus loved, I just find myself caring even more for my CC. What’s even more awesome is that I not only get to share about God & His Word; I also learn a lot of things from my CC. Our group is growing even bigger and I just pray that this coming year, I’ll see my CC handling their own CCs already :)

Personally, I still stumble and fall ’cause I am an imperfect person, but I always claim that I have a perfect God. I have learned not to depend everything on ‘trying harder’. Rather, this year has been about genuinely acknowledging my weakness and trusting God’s strength. I am always a work in progress but I can say that my progress this year has been better than my progress for the past 10 years of my life. Why? It’s because this year, I found myself needing God more and more. Unlike my mindset in past where I’d find myself ‘good enough’ and not really on God every once in a while, this year has been all about dependence on Him. And, I thank you Lord for your favor!

Siblings, Parent, and the Rest of the Family

I still spend more time with the family now, and being close to them has become VERY normal ;) I love how we’re all grown-up now, if you know what I mean. Ahh, I just love being with them! I always thank God for the family He has given me! I love how the chikitings and I can be very makulit together, and I think they love how I sorta spoil them :p We still have petty quarrels once in a while but thank God for meekness.  We got to watch a worship concert as a complete family this year–which was a first. And, we also got to take an overnight vacation with just us–which was another first :)

The extended family is awesome, as always. I am beyond joyful with how my aunts, uncles, and cousins are being used in the ministry! Tito Doy, Tita Leona, Tito Roy & Tita Millet are active in their clusters. Tito Ray is involved in the church. Ira is part of the NCD team. Lian is part of The Witness. A lot of them got baptized in water this year. Yey! Praise God! I know that this not the end! The best is yet to come for our clan this 2013!

“Studying”

I got to read the following books this year:

  • The Relationship Principles of Jesus
  • When God Writes Your Love Story
  • I Kissed Dating Goodbye
  • Thank God It’s Monday
  • The Prayer of Jabez for Teens
  • Walking with the King
  • God is Relevant
  • If You Want to Walk On Water, You’ve Got To Step Out Of The Boat
  • Crazy Love
  • No Other Gods
  • Good News For Those Trying Harder
  • Firing Jesus
  • Take Care How You Listen

I have MORE books and e-books to read this 2013 ’cause I have about 30-40 on hand right now. This should mean that I’ll have less time for Facebook and Twitter, right? :p

I also got to take Bible Study Methods and Bible Survey this year! It’s a good start in my desire to take more Bible School classes :) And, another feat, I had my first ever external training this year. Quite ironic how I don’t get to attend or hold trainings that much. Hehe :p

So, How’s Work and Money?

There have been major changes at work. I unexpectedly got moved to a project manager role. In the past, I’ve been very impatient about moving to a PM role. Well, that was until I realized that God was probably still teaching me something. When I finally decided to just wait for His perfect time, He gave it to me when I was least expecting it. It’s been a crazy 6 months so far. It’s the first time that I’ve shed tears for work. My health suffered a little, too. But, I know that God will sustain me. And I just trust that He will move me when it’s the right time.

Money-wise, this year has been about giving. Though I still need to practice on cheerfully giving, I thank God for changing my being kuripot. I have learned to share not only with my family (as that has always been easy for me), but even with others who are not connected to me by blood but are in need :)

I got to save some amount which was used for Muning’s tuition. Thank God for her scholarship, by the way! Expenses have been lessened :)

Sightseeing and More

I got to have a CDO-Iligan-Bukidnon-Camiguin trip with the block in February! It was one truly memorable trip! All those places and activities in 3 days! Woot! And, I got to go to Singapore with Tito Doy’s family in March! As you already know, that was a literally life-changing trip–even in ways that I didn’t know until now. And lastly, I got to go to Davao for the Youth Convention in April :) I need to replenish my travel fund for 2013.

Superfriends

I am always and forever thankful for the following friends of mine:

  • Portal peeps – I MISS YOU ALL! You will always have a special place in my heart. Alam niyo ‘yan. My sincerest apologies for being matampuhin at times, for not showing up sa mga lakad na ako ang nagyayaya, and for my blunt honesty at times. Do know that I love you with all my heart!
  • Coy and Kuya – You both know how much I love you. Sorry for being too hard on you most of the time. I’m just very protective sa inyong dalawa. I do hope that no matter what happens, we’ll stay as close as we have been this year.
  • Blockmates – I missed most of you this year :( Let’s make up for it in 2013, yes?
  • BLOCK BOYS!!! – Yes, I had to make a separate bullet for them ’cause they’ve been my boyfriends this 2012! We had quite a lot of lakads this year! I’m very thankful to God for giving you to me. Kahit di ako magka-boyfriend muna this 2013, as long as I have God and you guys, I know that I am loved :)
  • STC – More get-togethers soon, please! You folks always bring out the college kid in me.
  • Inspire@HP Core Team – I love how we’re an even bigger group now. Thank you for always inspiring me to look beyond myself.
  • L&D – HP and I owe a lot to you, folks. Thank you for your dedication and your effort. We couldn’t have done a lot of things without you!
  • PM Practice  – You have been and always will be my ultimate pegs in terms of my career. May we grow closer as one team this coming year! :) I miss having random dinners and chikahan with you, guys! Special mention to Kian, my favorite fwend: I miss you already!
  • PMO girls – Daph and Mooch, I couldn’t ask for better people to be in the PMO team. You girls are awesome. I am looking forward to finding more purpose in what we do this coming year. Looking at the big picture & changing perspectives always make a difference :)
  • Salt and Light – I thank God for this amazing group of people. Let’s go be salt and light to the world even in 2013.
  • CompSAt – I hope to see more of my CompSAt friends this 2013, but the Loopback experience has been awesome :)
  • Puyat Boys and Girls – You folks are so hilarious to be with. I love your energy!

Thank you all for the memories over food, meetings, archery, laser tag, movies, baby dedications (whuuuut), videoke, parties, theme park visits, projects, etcetera! You have all been instrumental in molding who I was in 2012!

Shindig

I got to watch Smash Project which showcased, The Used, The Cab, Cobra Starship, and Dashboard Confessional!!!! WHAAAAT!!! CHRIS CARRABBA!!!! Yes. I got to hug him and get a kiss from him. It was a very surreal experience to see a music influence IN THE FLESH and actually get to touch him. Girly side of me aside, what was more awesome was getting to hear him play music live. His music has really been a major player in my life–witnessing me being emo, kilig, annoyed, amused, and a whole array of other emotions.

And, I also got to attend the worship concert featuring The Planetshakers and Israel Houghton. Best ‘concert’ I’ve been to! It ignited the worshipper in me and it has been the start of me always EXPRESSING OUTWARDLY my love for God!

Significant Others

I had my ups and downs. Well, 2012 was more about the downs as I had some really low points. Looking back though, I have no regrets. There are some things that you learn based on experience as learning it through thoughts and theory usually won’t capture all the elements involved in the situation. I can say that I’m stronger now by God’s grace. I used to think that I won’t survive going through certain heartbreaking moments but alas, I’m still standing!

Come 2013, through God’s help, I will not focus on “looking for” the one, or my ultimate dream of becoming a housewife. These things will come in His time. As Joshua Harris puts it, I will NOT waste the years that I am single.

(FYI, this section is a complete copy-paste from last year’s reflection on love & relationships hehe :p)

Surplus a.k.a. Others

I got quite a bunch of freebies this year! I love getting free stuff :)

  • Meet and greet pass for Smash Project
  • Star World beach mat and purse
  • Pipino date from Miss-Match
  • Go Nuts Donuts freebies (Zalora GCs, donuts, Posh Nails GCs, etc)
  • Posh Nails freebies
  • Random accessories from Etsy giveaways

This year, I single-handedly launched our church website! It has long been my dream to launch a website from scratch! Thanks to random online tutorials on how to do purchase the domain and have this hosted. Yey!

Also, a group of friends and I launched Salt and Light Mag :) We started off great but had some hurdles towards the end of the year as I got busy but I am looking forward to see God use this avenue to bless more people in 2013!

***

PRAISE GOD FOR AN EVENTFUL 2012! Literally, if not for God’s goodness and grace, I don’t know where I would be today. If not for His kindness, I never can say that I’m still standing. If not for His mercy and His love, I most likely would have given up. If not for His favor, I never can say that I’m still standing by the grace of God!

THE BEST IS YET TO COME!

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