More than three months have passed swiftly since I gradually ceased from updating my blog; I was too occupied with a lot of things: responsibilities at home and at work. My aim to daily post my epiphanies had flickered; but like one of my favorite songs, “It only take a spark to keep the fire going…”, here I am renewing my vow with a burning desire to bless others through the ministry of writing.
The pivotal changes of my life challenged me to exhaust my energy and maximize my time. I was enjoying it at first, juggling two teaching jobs; working as an ESL teacher in a language academy in the morning until afternoon and tutoring TOEIC and TOEFL in an English language center during late afternoon until evening. I would sometimes accept writing and editing projects to be done on Sundays. Being a freelance copywriter/editor, I feel life isn’t complete without writing. Ironic it may appear, my blog has few entries lately, and most are photo challenges. I am fulfilled seeing the fruits of my hard labor at our workplace, but I realized that some essential aspects of my life seemed to lack vivacity.
To be honest, I haven’t listed New Year’s resolutions, yet I’ve crowded my prayer journal with several daily resolutions. My utmost concern this year is how to be a faithful steward of the precious health and time that God entrusted me. Reality slapped me in my face; I am not getting younger, my health is getting fragile. But I’m very grateful that I didn’t get sick since the discharge of my malady-stricken sister on May 2011.
As days hasten to approach my birthday, unexpected circumstances which are truly God’s providential workings happened. While contemplating on these, I reviewed my life again and again. So much time were wasted on unessential things. So much vigor was wasted to less priority. But it’s never late to build a more intimate relationship with God and through that, I would be able to be more efficient and effective. I’m comforted focusing more to what God has done in my life, not to what I have done throughout the past years.
Before the dawn of 2012, I read an article about 8-8-8 Protocol. All people are given the same 24-hour day. The author emphasized the importance of balancing life by using the time wisely. Her main concern is for the reader to be challenged how to be discreet in developing a healthy lifestyle in all aspects. Use the eight hours in building closer relationship with God (devotion and ministry), building stronger family ties, building lasting friendships and personal necessities (including regular exercise). Spend only eight hours for work, overworking deteriorates not only the body, but the mind. Consume the remaining eight hours for quality sleep. God is too wise be mistaken, He created day and night to fit to the human’s need.
I was so blessed; I sought God’s grace to comply with a more productive and balanced lifestyle. In our church, we have this 7-7-7 Prayer Habit: Worldwide, Seventh-day Adventists are encouraged to pray seven days a week, every seven in the morning and seven in the evening for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. I thought it’s best to partner 7-7-7 Prayer Habit with the 8-8-8 Protocol, because with the first, it would be very possible to practice the latter. The grace needed to fulfill God will is provided. “And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer, and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.” Isaiah 65:24
With this inspiration, I heeded the 8-8-8 call. It took me many sleepless nights to realize how pathetic I was, that I kept ignoring God’s call. In miraculous ways He showed His unchanging love. He saved me from a possible accident last Monday night (keep posted for the story). In my simple yet devoted way, I respond to His love: to listen to His call without E-A-R (Excuses-Alibis-Rationalization/Reluctance). It takes a child-like faith like little Samuel to respond: “Speak Lord, for your SERVANT is listening!” (1 Samuel 3:10).