Posted in Faith, Testimony

I Have Not Seen The Righteous Forsaken – My Testimony of God’s Faithfulness

righteous is never forsaken

The world said “hard work pays off” but my God says “ask God and claim His promises.”

Last July marked the 8th month that my husband was jobless after he finished contract work in KSA (or Kingdom of Saudi Arabia). I am into selling cosmetics, vitamins and more.

My family has simple needs and as parents, we always impart to our children to spend for needs over wants so that we won’t have any obligation from other people.

Happy to say I follow the Bible to “Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.” (Romans 13:8) and we are always contented of what we have.

My daily Bible readings concentrate on character traits and more often than not, I’m always hit straight to my heart. I even argue with God in my thoughts but in the end I bow in surrender to His correction.

Despite of my answered prayers journal to draw strength from, I do worry a lot.

How are we going to pay for my son’s monthly tuition fee in College, our bills and food expenses. I forgo buying medicine just to save for our food.

Then on 3rd week of July, my body manifested a lot of signs that my blood sugar was high. I have been itching all over my body that my daughter who’s a nurse persuaded me to see the doctor.

The result, I had very high FBS and cholesterol levels. My doctor prescribed a lot of medicines and the one I detest most was having daily insulin shots.

My body reacted in many ways for having insulin shots. I had bouts of hypoglycemia almost every other day. I always felt dizzy hindering me to do my usual household chores.

I’m thankful my husband is always there to assist and take care of me. He’s my walking buddy, my friend and the love of my life.

I praise God for giving me a kind and understanding husband because when I’m sick I could be difficult and touchy.

That was the time we were at our lowest. I always cry in my prayers and I prayed “my pain and problems are all yours please do something that will glorify your name!”

I posted on my Facebook the pain I was going through for having diabetes. Then out of the blue an FB friend from my birthplace offered financial help. I refused her offer since we are not that close and I wasn’t soliciting for financial help. She insisted and told me to charge it as loan.

So I accepted with joy and tears flowing knowing it’s the answer to my prayer. A week later, a kind-hearted person sent financial help without my prodding.

Two days later my husband got hired again as contractual worker in a government agency. These made me testify how good God is, my praises and thankfulness I shared on FB.

During my lowest He never abandoned me instead God reminded me of Psalm 37:25 which so real in my life.

Leap of faith and total surrender to God make a big difference! I praise God and glorify His name especially how He uses people to respond to my petition.

During those low times we never experienced having no food on our table, our bills were paid on time.

With all gratitude and sincerity I can truly claim “God is good all the time.”

PHOTO CREDIT: You Wall – High Quality Wallpaper

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Posted in Faith, Hope

He’s Prepared A Place For Us

 

Do you worry? Is your heart in trouble?

Please watch and listen to “He’s Prepared a Place for Us” and may the song’s message give you calm assurance.

Jesus Christ has ready the best place for you.

The composer, Errol James says:

“This is the promise we have for those who put their trust in Jesus Christ. No more pain, no more tears, no hunger and no thirst. The bible tells us that “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him”

Keep your faith strong and committed!

Posted in Faith

How to Honor St. John the Baptist the Right Way

John the Baptist

In the Philippines, the Roman Catholics celebrate the birth of St. John the Baptist on the 24th of June each year.

Being the Baptist, Filipinos would flock to the beach, rivers, lakes, ponds or pool to swim and celebrate John’s birthday.

Traditionally, children and adults would line the street (or sometimes hiding as in ambush) and douse with water the unsuspecting passers-by who maybe walking or riding on a vehicle.

Later, this practice diminished after some incidents led to rage and perpetrators getting shot at and killed by angry wet victims.

Like any other feasts, most revelers would end up intoxicated. It is also the day when incidents of drowning is high.

How I wish Filipinos who are keen in honoring John the Baptist would take time to read about him.

In Luke 1:13-17, we read the angel of the Lord’s prophecy about John the Baptist (emphasis mine).

  • 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John.
  • 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth,
  • 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born.
  • 16 He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God.
  • 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

Based from the Scriptures, it is plain and clear how we must give honour to John the Baptist.

As John the Baptist is never to take wine or other fermented drink, the best way to celebrate his birthday is to abstain from wine or other fermented drink.

Celebrating with all sobriety, I believe we would make John the Baptist happier if we take time to understand why we call him “the Baptist” and why should we follow Jesus Christ’s example of submitting to baptism when he was grown up and wasn’t a baby.

 
PHOTO CREDIT: Vintage Wine Case from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Posted in Faith, Hope, Inspirational, Love

Happy Birthday Our Dearest Mother, Nenita Castillon!

Wife, mother, pastor, teacher, tutor, mentor, friend, neighbour, cook, housekeeper, God-fearing, faithful, patient, sweet, loving, strong, full of courage, industrious, healthy, humble…she is everything a mother could be.

Most of all she is the epitome of faith and inner strength, encouraging and keeping us strong always. Happy birthday, our dearest Mum!

From all of us,

Jonan, Jewel and Jadyn

Lola Nits and Jadyn
Lola Nits and Jadyn
Jewel, Jadyn, Nenita, and Jonan
Jewel, Jadyn, Nenita, and Jonan
Nenita and Malvar Castillon family
Nenita and Malvar Castillon family
Posted in Faith, Hope, Inspirational, Living in New Zealand Now, Living in Timaru, Love, South Canterbury living

Tribute to God’s Awesome Goodness

 

As we celebrate our second winter in New Zealand, we remember how good our God is.  In June 2012, we were praying and waiting for the job that’s pivotal to our getting residence visa.

Our 9-month work-to-residence visa was ending 10 August 2012, barely two months then.

God’s Mighty hand at work, He moved people, caused events to happen, and guided us to a places where He wanted us to be.

So, we always thank the Father for the things that He has done and for the things He’s yet to do.

Thank you Lord for being doubly good.

We are also forever grateful to our brothers and sisters in Christ who have been with us in our faith journey.

Please watch the video my wife created —Beautiful Sights of Timaru, Canterbury, New Zealand

 

SONG CREDIT: “Doubly Good to You” by Amy Grant

Posted in Faith, Hope, Inspirational

Remembering Miss Daisy

faith in God

Daisy Basiliano 2

“Amo na abilidad mo sa rural church ka lang naga-pastor?” was Miss Daisy’s statement I can’t forget when we met in May 2002 at La Carlota Evangelical Church.

We were attending the annual assembly (now biennial) of the Convention of Philippine Baptist Churches (CPBC).

The statement means “With all your abilities you are pastor of a rural church only?”

If you don’t know Miss Daisy Basiliano, you certainly will have a lot of negative things going in your heart and mind.

I’ve known her as a brazen woman. She says what she thinks is true about you.

She could be “rough” at times but she had the best intentions for you. The tenderness and kindness are always there.

I met her when I was a teenager going with my father who was pastor of Astorga Baptist Church, Dumarao, Capiz. That was in the 80s.

All I know that her family supports the church and the pastoral work as well.

I learned through the CPBC community that Miss Daisy became a pastor, chaplain and teacher. She trained for Clinical Pastoral Education in the US.

We never had any close encounter until that day in May 2002.

After telling me that statement, Miss Daisy didn’t stop.

A few months later, I got a message from her that she had recommended me to speak at New Testament Baptist Church, Iloilo City in September 2002. This preaching assignment developed further.

On 20 October 2002, I started my work as interim pastor of New Testament Baptist Church, a city church.

Miss Daisy had a way of making people think outside of the box. Her statement to me made me think, “Why not?”

Actually, after that meeting in May 2002, I opened myself to working with city churches.

In fact, I got a call as associate pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Manila starting December 2002. I was already committed to work in Manila that’s why my interim appointment.

When my father suffered stroke on 16 November 2002, I decided to stay and continue working with New Testament Baptist Church for three years.

Our family and Miss Daisy became closer because we found ourselves pursuing together what is right, just and pleasing before the Lord God.

While teaching at the College of Theology, she came to live with us at CPU Campus for almost two years.

Those were blissful moments of hearing God’s miracle and goodness to her like her victory over cancer, near-death experiences and other life-changing experiences.

Finally, on 6 June 2012, she laid to rest her earthly body and be with the Lord Jesus Christ, her master and friend.

Love of God
Days before leaving Iloilo City for New Zealand, we took time to visit Miss Daisy at Roxas City. We were hoping it wasn’t our last. It’s not for we will see her beyond the sunset someday soon.

We will always remember you, Miss Daisy!

Posted in Faith, Hope, Inspirational, Love

Our Journey of Faith, Hope and Love, and Tea’s Spiritual Growth

 

“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Father and son
Randy and son, Tea

By Randy Anthony

Our 10-year old son Theodore (Tea) was very much a part of our challenging journey since July 2012. His Manang Kima was away for her internship from May to August 2012 so he was with us when his mom’s condition was detected by mammogram and he was also with us when it was confirmed by our family physician.

He was with his mom during the lab tests and was with her when the staples were removed from the surgery area. He did not ask any questions when we made major changes on how we pray, he just held our hands and joined us in asking for God’s divine healing love.

From the start, we just told him that mom’s breast is “bumpy,” she will undergo surgery to remove the bumps and she will receive medication that might cause her hair to fall. With the extent of his participation however, we were thinking that deep inside he knows that his mom’s condition is more than just a “bumpy condition.”

Last July 27, 2012 (Thursday), Tea’s school held the Terry Fox National School Run Day.  

Terry Fox (July 28, 1958-June 28, 1981) was a Canadian humanitarian, athlete, and cancer research activist. In 1980, with one leg having been amputated, he embarked on a cross-Canada run to raise money and awareness for cancer research. Although the spread of his cancer eventually forced him to end his quest after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres (3,339 mi), and ultimately cost him his life, his efforts resulted in a lasting, worldwide legacy (From Terry Fox – Wikipedia).

During the run, the students were given a sticker with a blank space for them to write the reason they are running. When I came home that Thursday afternoon, I saw Tea’s sticker with a note, “I run for my family.”

I immediately anticipated that there will be more questions from him about cancer because for sure, they were given some lectures about it in school. That’s one of my fears because at that time, I still don’t know how to explain it to him. Fortunately, he did not ask me anything about it.

mother and daughter
Nina and daughter, Kima

We were busy with our usual chores the next Friday morning. I had my breakfast ahead of them because I need to prepare early to bring Tea to school and to go with Nina to the Tom Baker Cancer Centre (TBCC) for her bone scan. Nina and Tea had their breakfast together and I don’t know what they talked about.

We were already in TBCC when Nina told me that Tea asked her if we have cancer in the family. Nina asked him “why?”

Tea told her that while participating in the Terry Fox Run, he was thinking that he should run to fight cancer for his family. He didn’t understand why but he just kept thinking about it.

Nina told him straight, “yes, we have cancer in the family and I have breast cancer.” Tea simply answered, “Now I know why I had that kind of feeling.”

Nina might have handled her condition well that at Tea’s tender age, he was able to accept it well too. God did not only strengthen Nina, He also strengthened Tea and ready his heart and mind to discover the truth by himself in His own appointed time.

Tea surprised me again two weeks ago.

Randy Anthony

Before we went to sleep, he asked me if he can talk to me for a while. I said, “Yes, what it is all about?” He replied, “Is mom ok now?”

I immediately responded that his mom is okay and he should not worry about her.

He further asked, “But what about the news on cancer medicine?” (He was referring to the news on TV that chemotherapy medicine in Ontario was diluted and about 1500 patients might be affected).

I explained to him that we are in Alberta and his mom is already done with her chemotherapy. She was administered a different kind of chemotherapy medicine and the remaining medication until October will prevent the “bumps” from growing again.

Tea however had another follow-up question, “But are you sure that mom is well now?”

I don’t know what to say so I just told him, “You know, all we need to do is to eat healthy food and help your mom all the time so that she will not get sick.”

Randy and wife, Nina
Randy and wife, Nina

He answered, “So she got sick because of unhealthy food and too much work?”

Again, I don’t know what to say so I simply replied, “Maybe.”

Our conversation ended but deep inside I felt that I did not gave him the right answer. I went to one corner of our room where I prayed and asked God for guidance.

After a moment of silence, I went back to Tea and told him, “Tea, all we need to do is to pray all the time. We don’t need to worry about anything because God will take care of your mom, she will be well.”

Tea did not answer me, he was just smiling and I noticed that he was already praying. I felt a lump on my throat, I wept and I smiled.

We know that while family members and friends are praying for Nina’s healing, they are also praying for the family. I kept on saying we can feel it…yes, we can feel it.

Prayers did not only help Nina overcome the impact of two surgeries, chemotherapy, series of tests, and a lot of pain.

 

Prayers also strengthened our family, blessed our family, and brought spiritual enlightenment to our family especially to our youngest child Theodore.

Yes, God answered our prayers! We will be witnesses of His healing power and we will always bring glory, honor and praise to Him. Amen! 

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