Saturday, May 16, 2009



One day a man saw an old lady, stranded on the side of the road, but
even in the dim light of day, he could see she needed help. So he pulled
up in front of her Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still
sputtering when he approached her.

Even with the smile on his face, she was worried. No one had stopped to
help for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He didn't look
safe; he looked poor and hungry.

He could see that she was frightened, standing out there in the cold. He
knew how she felt. It was that chill which only fear can put in you.

He said, 'I'm here to help you, ma'am. Why don't you wait in the car
where it's warm? By the way, my name is Bryan Anderson.'

Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady, that was bad
enough. Bryan crawled under the car looking for a place to put the jack,
skinning his knuckles a time or two. Soon he was able to change the
tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands hurt.

As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down the window and
began to talk to him. She told him that she was from St. Louis and was
only just passing through. She couldn't thank him enough for coming to
her aid.

Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk. The lady asked how much she
owed him. Any amount would have been all right with her. She already
imagined all the awful things that could have happened had he not
stopped. Bryan never thought twice about being paid. This was not a job
to him. This was helping someone in need, and God knows there were
plenty, who had given him a hand in the past. He had lived his whole
life that way, and it never occurred to him to act any other way.

He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back, the next time she
saw someone who needed help, she could give that person the assistance
they needed, and Bryan added, 'And think of me.'

He waited until she started her car and drove off. It had been a cold
and depressing day, but he felt good as he headed for home, disappearing
into the twilight.

A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe. She went in to grab
a bite to eat, and take the chill off before she made the last leg of
her trip home. It was a dingy looking restaurant. Outside were two old
gas pumps. The whole scene was unfamiliar to her. The waitress came over
and brought a clean towel to wipe her wet hair. She had a sweet smile,
one that even being on her feet for the whole day couldn't erase. The
lady noticed the waitress was nearly eight months pregnant, but she
never let the strain and aches change her attitude. The old lady
wondered how someone who had so little could be so giving to a stranger.
Then she remembered Bryan .

After the lady finished her meal, she paid with a hundred dollar bill.
The waitress quickly went to get change for her hundred dollar bill, but
the old lady had slipped right out the door. She was gone by the time
the waitress came back. The waitress wondered where the lady could be.
Then she noticed something written on the napkin.

There were tears in her eyes when she read what the lady wrote: 'You
don't owe me anything. I have been there too. Somebody once helped me
out, the way I'm helping you. If you really want to pay me back, here
is what you do: Do not let this chain of love end with you.'

Under the napkin were four more $100 bills.

Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill, and people to
serve, but the waitress made it through another day. That night when she
got home from work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about the
money and what the lady had written. How could the lady have known how
much she and her husband needed it? With the baby due next month, it was
going to be hard.

She knew how worried her husband was, and as he lay sleeping next to
her, she gave him a soft kiss and whispered soft and low, 'Everything's
going to be all right. I love you, Bryan Anderson.'

There is an old saying 'What goes around comes around.' Today I sent you
this story, and I'm asking you to pass it on. Let this light shine.

Good friends are like stars....You don't always see them, but you know
they are always there.


Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Ugliest Thing... from YOUNGBLOOD of

The ugliest thing
By Sarah Liliana Z. Sarmiento
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:17:00 05/07/2009

Filed Under: Family, Youth

I think the ugliest thing about having a sister around is she being a lot prettier than you. You know because when she is around, boys are whistling and calling out to her. Without her, all you would hear is the chirping of crickets even if you take off your top amid a swarm of teenage boys with raging hormones.

Thankfully, I am the more beautiful baby girl in the family (and being that, I do not know how it feels not to be whistled at by the guys).

Seriously now, the ugliest thing about having a sister around is this:

On the second day of the year 2009, I had a terrible, terrible tantrum. After watching “Enteng Kabisote” ages ago, I had vowed never to watch a Filipino movie ever again. But that promise had to be broken because our uncle wanted to treat us to a movie as his 2008 Christmas gift, and other than Metro Manila Film Festival movies, our country does not get anything American or European in December and January (forgive me for being racist).

Even before Tito came to pick us up, my four siblings and I talked about saving the treat for a better movie, like “7 Pounds” or “17 Again” or “Changeling.” I thought that was the plan, until I found myself death-marching to the train station to Gateway, ignoring Tito, not even thanking him for the Kobe Bryant jersey he gave me, and most of all, hating my sister because she did not stick to the supposed plan.

After the movie, we had to do some errands for our parents, so Tito went home ahead of us. He must have felt my nastiness and spite and could not take it anymore.

After he left, being the very, very frank sister that I am, I pointed out the tears welling up in the sides of my sister’s eyes, her nose turning red at the tip every time she would feel awful. And being the always, always right sister that she is, she pointed out my bratty performance, and burst into tears right then and there amid the beautiful people of Gateway. Of course, the smaller sisters had nothing to say, and our brother Storm missed this encounter.

And now, for the best part. We entered Fully Booked, which to me is the place where all good things happen, my own heaven on earth. After 30 long and quiet minutes of getting lost in between rows and shelves of books, my sister suddenly appeared out of nowhere, handed me a plastic bag and walked away.

Imagine how I must have looked when I opened the bag, and found in my hands “Lovely Bones” and “Me Talk Pretty One Day.” When I asked her (of course, I had to pretend to be a little reluctant and hesitant) who they were for, she said: “Sa iyo. Naiinis kasi ako sa iyo kaya kita binilhan (They are for you. I just felt so irritated by you and that’s why I bought them).”

With so many thoughts running in my head (“She’s guilt-tripping me but it’s working!” “Should I get her a book too?” “Should I text Tito and say sorry?” “I have a Sedaris book!”), I managed to buy her and the small ones Dairy Queen and Taco Bell (because I am awfully cheap), and we kissed and hugged and (insert all the sisterly cheesiness here) amid the beautiful people of Gateway.

The point I am trying to make here is: get into a fight with my sister because she gives the best peace offerings in the world.

More seriously now, love your sisters and brothers because, in the end, no matter how bratty you might be, or how lost to this world you might seem to be, you can always and forever come home to them.

One final thought: I think my sister is the most beautiful person in the world, inside and out. Forget that stuff about having her around being the ugliest thing, it is this—her seeing good in every single person—which I love most about her. Life without her would be a mistake.

(Sarah Liliana Z. Sarmiento, 18, is an incoming third year BFA Creative Writing student at the Ateneo de Manila University.)

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Fw: choi, God's Message For You Today, May 5, 2009

----- Forwarded Message ----
From: KerygmaFamily <>
Sent: Monday, May 4, 2009 9:31:22 AM
Subject: choi, God's Message For You Today, May 5, 2009

Daily Bible Reflections
for May 5, 2009

Dear choi,

God has a great plan for your life?including this Tuesday.

Praying for you,

Bo Sanchez




So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, "How long are you going to keep us in suspense?" – John 10:24
Oh no! Not again! We were stranded in Guangzhou, China for a second time. On both occasions, what was supposed to be a stopover became an extended stay.
Only three months earlier, we couldn't land in this city because of "poor visibility." During that flight, we circled around the city for four suspenseful and agonizing hours. I wondered how visibility could be the problem when the city lights were clearly visible from the airplane windows! I suspected something more frightening — like a hijack. It caused me to pray harder and put my trust in Him.
When we finally landed, we were comfortably booked in a five-star hotel with sumptuous international buffet. Because of the delay, we got a free day tour when we arrived in Frankfurt, Germany!
The second time we got delayed, we were booked in a resort-hotel and, the following day in Hong Kong, we were able to make an unscheduled visit with relatives.
There were surely other reasons for the delays but, in my heart, I know that the Lord had worked everything for our good because we trusted Him. Rolly EspaƱa
Do you look at things negatively and feel that a disaster is always following you?
Lord, thank You for Your Word which promises that You will turn everything unto good for those who love You (Romans 9:28).

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It is the persecution of the Christians, first by the Jews in Jerusalem and then later by the Roman Empire as a whole, that is one of the primary influences and impulses that led to the Gospel being spread beyond its origins. Today we read of the Gospel reaching Cyprus and Phoenicia; it will then go to what is today Eastern Turkey, Greece and Rome. I wonder what we are doing to contribute to its spread today in our own countries and regions.
Acts 11:19-26
19 Those who had been scattered by the persecution that arose because of Stephen went as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but Jews. 20 There were some Cypriots and Cyrenians among them, however, who came to Antioch and began to speak to the Greeks as well, proclaiming the Lord Jesus. 21 The hand of the Lord was with them and a great number who believed turned to the Lord. 22 The news about them reached the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas [to go] to Antioch. 23 When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart, 24 for he was a good man, filled with the holy Spirit and faith. And a large number of people was added to the Lord. 25 Then he went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26 and when he had found him he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a large number of people, and it was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians.
Psalm 87:1b-3. 4-5. 6-7
R: All you nations, praise the Lord.
1 His foundation upon the holy mountains 2 the LORD loves: The gates of Zion, more than any dwelling of Jacob. 3 Glorious things are said of you, O city of God! (R) 4 I tell of Egypt and Babylon among those that know the LORD; Of Philistia, Tyre, Ethiopia "This man was born there." 5 And of Zion they shall say: "One and all were born in her; and he who has established her is the Most High LORD." (R) 6 They shall note, when the peoples are enrolled: "This man was born there." 7 And all shall sing, in their festive dance: "My home is within you." (R)
Jesus does not hide the fact that He is the Son of God. He may be using a language that is not as direct as it might be in explaining this truth, but He never denies it, nor does He directly hide it. I have experienced the difficulty of trying to get a message across to a group who are not willing to hear that particular message. It is virtually impossible to get people to hear something they refuse to consider as an option! This does not happen all that often, but when it does, it is very frustrating.
John 10:22-30
22 The feast of the Dedication was then taking place in Jerusalem. It was winter. 23 And Jesus walked about in the temple area on the Portico of Solomon. 24 So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, "How long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly." 25 Jesus answered them, "I told you and you do not believe. The works I do in my Father's name testify to me. 26 But you do not believe, because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish. No one can take them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one can take them out of the Father's hand. 30 The Father and I are one."
my reflections
think: I wonder what we are doing to contribute to the Gospel's spread today in our own countries and regions.

God's special verse/thought for me today________________

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________

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WorkinG toGether For the kinGDom
Barnabas and Saul worked together for a number of years in the service of the Gospel. We hear at first how Barnabas takes the lead and seems to be a mentor of sorts to Paul. It is Barnabas who introduces Paul to the apostles and vouches for him; it is Barnabas who "calls the shots" as to what they do and where they go. The impression the Scriptures give is one of Barnabas training Paul for his later work of evangelization. Ultimately, Paul and Barnabas have a falling out and they go their separate ways. By the Second Missionary Journey of Paul, Barnabas is no longer with him and Paul is obviously the leader.
No one person is capable of doing everything. It does not matter how gifted an individual might be, he will always need the help and support of others. The challenge that we all face here is learning to work with different personalities and having the humility to be willing to give way a little and stand firm at other times in order to maintain the unity of the community while not compromising the truth of the Gospel. This can be a very difficult path to walk at times and if people are not committed to unity, there will inevitably be a split. I do not believe any split in the community of the faithful is God-ordained. God always works for unity and harmony, never for division and discord.
When difficulties arise, it is important that we do everything to work for reconciliation and unity. This may require a lot of humility but this is better than to be part of the split; better to be faithful to the work of the Spirit than to set ourselves above the will of God. Having said that, I recognize that there will be disagreements that will not be resolved simply because of the sinfulness of the people involved. When this happens, it is important that we do what we can to avoid the same result in the future. The continual splitting of so-called churches when one pastor decides to branch out on his own is anathema to God who desires the unity of His flock, not the opposite. Fr. Steve Tynan, MGL
Reflection Question:
Do I work for the unity of the People of God in the way I express my faith and minister the Gospel to others?
Holy Spirit, use me as an instrument of unity to bring reconciliation between individuals and groups that have parted ways so that they may one day join forces and work together in spreading the Good News.
St. Angelo, Martyr, pray for us.

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