I don’t know if you can identify with me, pero parang mas tight ang Christmas na ito compared last year. Tight in a way na parang mas maraming outflow kaysa inflow. Sa tingin ko lang naman, though aminado naman ako that in one way or another, malaking factor ang mga unplanned expenditures ko this year.
I missed blogging, really. Sa sobrang dami kong ganap this last quarter, halos wala akong oras na harapin ang laptop ko to jot down my thoughts. Marami akong blog ideas to write about kaso nanatili na lang sila sa notes section ng cellphone ko, nalipasan na ng relevance ang majority. Salamat sa holiday, kahit paano napahinga.
I read the first chapter of Ephesians the day before Christmas. I loved how alive and timely the word of God could be! As of that moment, two of my friends lost a loved one. I can’t imagine how totally different this Christmas will be for them. But the word of God is full of assuring words – that we are “blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). How loving can the Lord be that even in the darkest moments of our lives, we can still see the “silver lining”, as Catriona Gray nails it. I just pray for the Holy Spirit’s comforting embrace be upon them in this trying times.
Going back to Ephesians 1, I recognized how easy it is for most of us to look for what’s lacking rather than appreciate the things that we enjoy. Mas madali kasi ma-appreciate ang mga materyal na bagay kaysa mga blessings na hindi mo naman nahahawakan. Yet the Apostle Paul’s thanksgiving is not much of the material things that he has, but the spiritual blessings every believer enjoys in Christ.
God has adopted us into His family. He graciously purchased with the blood of Jesus and forgave our sins. He has showered us with kindness, along with wisdom and understanding. He has included us in his eternal redemptive plan of bringing everything together under the authority of Christ. He has given us an inheritance through Jesus Christ. And if God’s believability does not convince you, He has given us a seal – the promised Holy Spirit – as a guarantee. Hindi ba sobrang blessed natin spiritually?
We may not have a lot of material things to count, but our fingers would not be enough to count the spiritual blessings we have in Christ Jesus.
If life is just about accumulation of material things, siguro nga napaka-kawawa natin as Christians. Especially those who gave up a lot for their faith. If life is about worldly wealth, malamang nasa dulo tayo ng pila. Kasi naman our standards for living are counter-cultural, beyond normal kung iisipin. We consider ourselves blessed when we give; instead of getting even, we forgive; when insulted, we turn the other cheek; when we want to be great, we serve; and when we want to live, we die to ourselves.
But life isn’t about wealth accumulation, and material things do not mean the world to us. If the world considers us poor based on its standards, it doesn’t matter. We know for ourselves that we are rich beyond the riches this world has to offer. We may not have a lot of material things to count, but our fingers would not be enough to count the spiritual blessings we have in Christ Jesus.
Dun pa lang sa joy of salvation, panalo na tayo e.
Let me join the Apostle Paul in this prayer: “I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance” (Ephesians 1:18).
You are beyond blessed. Receive that.