Thursday, August 31, 2006

Midnight candles

Just before I study, I call home.

"What's the matter, Lance?" my parents ask me. I tell them I have two exams tomorrow, and I'm still unprepared. I ask them to pray for me; it fills my heart with inexpressible joy to know that my family members, though they may be miles away, continually commit me in their prayers.

"Don't worry, Lance," they tell me, "trust in the Lord and lean not in your own understanding."

I hang the phone ten minutes thereafter. I rush to my room, open my books, and burn the midnight candles.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Galatians 6 and the missions field

I can’t let this day pass without writing about tonight’s fellowship in Yakal.

Kuya Greg Vargas, DCF’s faculty adviser and instructor in the School of Statistics, spoke on Galatians 6, and stressed the importance of believers “sharing one another’s burden.”

Ate Pinky Baylon, one of the founders of YCF some twenty years ago, then gave her testimony. She talked on how the Lord opened the doors for ministry, the struggles she had gone through, and how she relied on God alone for strength in the things she did. She stressed the need to humble ourselves before God, and glorify Him in all things—this ought to be the main goal of everyone.

She said we are blessed to be in UP because we have the best of both worlds: the opportunity to be trained academically, and to grow spiritually. She had been invited to speak so we could pray for her. She has, after all, committed to work as a full-time missionary to other Asian countries through a community development radio program of the Far East Broadcasting Company (FEBC). Much of her work will be in Singapore, and she will be leaving, Lord-willing, on the last week of September.

She is therefore the first cross-cultural international missionary of the YCF.

Let us remain steadfast in our prayers, not only for Ate Pinky, but for the rest of the missionary force deployed throughout the world, fulfilling Christ’s commission to proclaim the Gospel to all nations.


Saturday, August 26, 2006

Complexation and the NIMBB Fun Day

Finally, I've been able to complex with my antibody, Kevin. This supposed bonding activity is part of the application process in the UP MBB Society. We had lunch at Chocolate Kiss, together with Titus and Kino, the other antigen-antibody pair, and Jade who gladly tagged along.

From there, we made our way to Albert Hall, home of the National Insitute of MBB (NIMBB). For four hours or so, we forgot all about the exams and lab reports lined up for the week as we joined in the games and laughter.

More pictures are posted in my Bottled Multiply Site.


Auntie Netnet in Manila to buy us groceries

I had a lovely time with Auntie Netnet, my mother's sister and therefore my aunt, tonight. She's staying for a few days in Manila after her conference in Baguio. She treated me to a full meal in Sbarro, and bought groceries for Manong and I that would last for the remainder of the semester. Praise to God for the wonderful time I had with her.


Sunday, August 20, 2006

Bottled tidbits 4

Jac, I rejoice in that the Lord has given you another year. Praise be to Him for His goodness, mercy and truth. Great is His faithfulness indeed.


My high school buddy and good friend Vanessa wrote this very moving piece about homesickness.

She said, "I visited a friend's house some two weeks ago and just sitting in their living room feels weird...sort of foreign. And then I saw her Mom and Dad and brothers and their kitchen and dining table and I couldn't help but feel a little envious. She goes home to her family in a real house everyday after grueling hours at school! She eats warm, homecooked meals at least twice daily and she has parents who can give her a real hug whenever schoolwork starts to get too frustrating!"

Saturday, August 19, 2006

My Art Studies class goes to Rizal-Laguna

5:45 am. Mark's cellphone sends out its alarm. I jump out of bed, scramble for my watch tucked below my pillow, and after reading the time, rush to the bathroom with my towel, soap, and shampoo.

6:00 am. I am half-way through the Freshie Walk, that long stretch of alley from Melchor Hall to AS, when I bump into Girlie, a classmate who's going on the same field trip.

"Late na tayo," I tell her.

"Oo nga eh. Pero di pa naman siguro aalis 'yan," she says--it's always Filipino time. And she's right: from afar, we see the entire class only beginning to board the small bus.

6:30 am. The bus leaves. We all doze off, until Kuya A begins his cacophonious chatter that would last for the entire trip.

7:30 am to 11:30. We visit the Blanco Family Museum. (The Blanco family members are all painters, trained by the patriarch, Jose Blanco. The youngest in the family, Peter Paul, has begun painting when he was only 11 months old.)

We then proceed to the Morong Church, take lots of pictures (some of them I will be posting here soon), then go to Taytay for lunch, where I finish my meal of caldereta, chopsuey, and two (or more) cups of rice.

12 noon to 4:00 pm. Demonstrations on paper-mache making. Visits to two more historical Catholic churches. Tours around the old town of Paete. Buko pie.

5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
. Trip back home. While everyone sings with the videoke in the bus, I close my eyes in silent prayer, my heart full of awe and thanksgiving to the Lord. He has, after all, given me the rare chance of forgetting my other concerns even for a day.

And yes, I am still craving for my dose of hot chicken soup.


Friday, August 18, 2006

So far away


Friday, August 11, 2006

A thief slashed my pocket and stole my phone

The Philcoa jeep was jam-packed when I saw it parked in front of Jollibee. Still I squeezed my way into one of the remaining spaces. The 15-minute drive to Yakal was rather quick, and when I eventually said "Para po," I realized something was missing.

Ah, my phone. My pocket felt light. I looked at it. No phone. Only lacerations.

Someone stole it.

Despite this, there are so many things to praise God for. I was safe. I wasn't kidnapped nor dragged into the wide, open fields to be tortured.

I'm okay now. Indeed, I am. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Bottled Doodle (Photoshop) Sketches Part Three

Jef told me he wanted a Bottled Doodle Potrait, too. I was planning on actually making him one. However, my internet connection somehow slowed down; the doodle IMvironment couldn't be loaded. So I figured, "I'd paint in Photoshop."

I did.

Jef, here ya go. And yes, I still remember those humongous pata legs!

Ielle told me to make her something beautiful, too.

In the middle of my sketching sessions, I told her, "Ielle, di ata maganda yung nagawa ko (or something to that effect.)"

"Okay lang, Lance. Kahit anong gawin mo, maganda pa rin ako." Inner beauty.

Here then is the most exaggerated portrait I've done so far. I hope I've given her beauty enough justice.