Mistakes

I bought an expensive Moleskine diary planner costing almost three thousand pesos. I had been using this brand since I joined the BPO or business process outsourcing industry because that was the only time when I was able to afford to buy one. Funny how I rarely write on them. I remember staying at Grand Millennium Hotel, in Malaysia over breakfast, one of my male Indian national colleague saw me with “post its” writing on them and sticking them on to the Moleskine weekly scheduler. He was ecstatic and asked in his handsome bearded face… “why don’t you directly write on the paper notebook?” I gave him back that sweetest Filipina smile, continued in what I am doing but at the back of my mind, which, I still remember to this day. Yeah? He’s right why can’t I just write directly on the expensive smooth cotton feel paper of the notebook?

Today I realized this is a direct manifestation of my fear of committing mistakes. That the expensive “thing” should be flawless, because it seems flawless. That silky leather gorgeous black hard bound cover embracing those soft pages all together. Here in the Philippines it’s a common term, If you buy something expensive it is difficult for us to use, to dilapidate, the fear that the beautiful thing will wear out. To the point we served those things instead of those things serving us. I crave for more and more, there was once a time with free notebook planners of “Starbucks”, there came a point where I collected a lot of stickers (collect does not justify, nor a modest word to use to describe the grabbing I did at that time) – I went to claim four or more Starbucks planners that I did not gave away but kept them all to my self. I ended up culling all those stuff and all soon found in the trash bin… some of them even the expensive ones, the ones I bought ended up in the trash without being used.

But You don’t see me different
I am Your reflection
You don’t make mistakes
And You didn’t start with me
Even though I’m far from where I know I’m supposed to be
You don’t make mistakes
And heaven would agree
That in Your eyes I’m everything that I was made to be
‘Cause You don’t make mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
We look to every face to feel approved
We long for validation
That already came from You
You wrapped Yourself in skin to give us proof
Your love it never ended
You needed us to know the truth

‘Cause You don’t make mistakes
And You didn’t start with me
Even though I’m far from where I know
I’m supposed to be
You don’t make mistakes
And heaven would agree
That in Your eyes
I’m everything that I was made to be
‘Cause You don’t make mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
No, I won’t waste another day
Believing words You didn’t say
No, I won’t waste another day
Believing words You didn’t say
No, I won’t waste another day
Believing words You didn’t say
No, I won’t waste another day
Believing words You didn’t say

You don’t make mistakes
And You didn’t start with me
Even though I’m far from where I know
I’m supposed to be
You don’t make mistakes
And heaven would agree
That in Your eyes
I’m everything that I was made to be
‘Cause You don’t make mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes
No, You don’t mistakes, no

– “Mistakes”
Song by Influence Music

Words cannot define the pain I am going through right now. But one thing I know… when I asked God for a song. He gave me this one. What makes a person continue even if it hurts. What makes a person continue beyond confusion. After every heart break after heart break. What makes a person go on even if you don’t understand. God gave me this song in the night, in the midst of darkness and all the suffering. I heard it all aloud God saying…

“I don’t make mistakes my child”

“My child, don’t reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. For the Lord corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭3:11-12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

God this is between You and me… I prayed silently.

I thank God for all the pain because I know this is God’s way to call my attention. Something is not right. Nothing can snatch us from God’s hands. No, nothing, not even frustration at the office. No, not even, wrong relationships with the wrong person and that means not only with opposite sex but includes even female friends and acquaintances. No, not even unrealized expectations. No, not even unmet needs, hopes and dreams.

Teary eyed, Pastor Peter shared, not all of our expectations, needs, hopes and dreams are realized in this lifetime. Sometimes we have to put our trust in God, to put our faith in God. That we all have to wait for God’s timing, which, the reality is… the situation that we see now is just temporary compared to eternity. Our life here on earth no matter how short is just a dot compared to the eternity of our being with our Creator. More often I trivialize my pain, there are other people experiencing bigger problems than me. Raises the question why does a good God allow pain and suffering like with cancer patients. Does God heal cancer patients? Yes and No. A cancer patient may get healed in this lifetime, but if not, when a person dies God gives us a new glorious body – free from all the pain and suffering, yes even from cancer. But until God calls us home, even if we do not understand, even in the midst of excruciating pain that no one on earth understands, our part is to trust and have faith in Him no matter what.

I know it will be a long difficult path, there will be time I will feel alone and everyone has abandoned me including God. How can I go on with this life when I got used to a life of emotional codependence with Kevin. Now that I have turned my back, now is the point of no return. I know there will be long sleep less nights of crying. I know there will be times of temptations to go back to Kevin and beg him to accept me back. I know there will be times when I want to go back to Palawan and look for him. I know there will be times when I will be frustrated at work. Wallowing in tears for when it rains… it pours. But I know even if I don’t see God working, I don’t see God’s answers to my prayers, I don’t see God move. I know God is working even if I don’t see. God is Sovereign. God is in full control.

I have father issues. I never had a close relationship with my earthly biological father. Ever since he was distant, but I remember a couple of times he would put his hand on my head and kiss me on my forehead. I remember inviting him to church but he never once gave in. Until he was diagnosed with colon cancer. In his hospital bed, months before he died, those were the most precious and loving moments I had with him. Tatay (father in Filipino) confessed to me that we are his second family, meaning he had his first wife and kids, my half brothers and sisters, from the first wife. This burden of truth added to the financial and emotional difficulties at that time. Running out of money to pay hospital and medical bills, but more than that loosing my own father who supported and looked after me, my mother and siblings to cancer. Fast track decades later up to now. This father issue left a huge gaping hole in my heart. I looked for every corner on earth to fill this void. Material things, relationships even with wrong men, men even half my age. It took a lot of time and waste of resources before I came to my senses… that this God shaped vacuum in my heart can only be filled by God Himself. So it is important, if you have similar life issues like mine to look for a father image here on earth whom we can look up to. I cannot imagine my self if I don’t hear the messages of Pastor Peter Tan-Chi, Pastor Bong Saquing, Pastor Ricky Sarthou, Brother Peter Tan-Chi Jr., Brother Paul Tan-Chi and other preachers at Christ’s Commission Fellowship. God used all of them to fill my longing for a father, but more than that all of these men were used for me to hear what I needed most – the Words of my Father in Heaven. My prayer if you are reading this, I pray you find it in your heart to sought after the things of God. Who am I to tell you this, I am not perfect, I am a wreckage, I am broken, I am used, I am damaged. But only a Perfect God can use imperfect people like you and me to encourage each other. God can send the medicine right away to heal cancer… or simply God can just write all the answers to all of our prayers and questions with His mighty fingers on the heavens for all of mankind to see. But no, God uses people, no matter how imperfect, no matter how many times we stumble and fall, no matter how damaged, no matter how broken. God uses broken people, first to receive healing for each of our own selves, next is to extend this healing to others. We may not always understand His ways but one thing is for sure. People change, time changes so are our situations. But God doesn’t change. God doesn’t make mistakes.

Why can’t God just write all the answers in the clear sky? More often than not mankind’s greatest teacher is life’s pain. So let us not waste all of our pain. Cherish it, use it, by allowing God to use this pain to draw us closer to Him. This is a reflection of the clouds over the waters of Long Beach San Vicente municipality in Palawan Philippines.

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