The Prayer

The Prayer…

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

The prayer should be said with heartfelt sincerity,

not only to ask for favor but also, thank Him with alacrity.

 

The prayer is a spiritual instrument for communication,

with Him in mind, it should be made with sincere intention.

 

The prayer need not be said loud as for others to hear,

as it is enough that  we bow our head and say it in whisper.

 

The prayer may be short oozing with love and humility,

the better for it to be heard and appreciated  by the Almighty.

Thanking-God

 

 

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Incidents in my Life that Make Me Believe in Fate and Destiny…and GOD

Incidents in my Life that Make Me

Believe in Fate and Destiny…and GOD

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

I may not have a religion but I believe in God. As I am moving toward the threshold of my life, a simple assessment of what have been happening to me made me realize that my God is basically responsible for everything and HE even used other people, too. At this juncture of my life, I cannot deny that my decisions at times have negative effects in my life due to the abused excuse…human frailties.

 

Today, I am really feeling the “purpose” that HE gave me. My having been born in a poor family, orphaned at an early age that resulted to more deprivations did not prevent me from finishing my education. HE made go out of my birthplace when I worked with Philippine Airlines and was even made to choose a far-off station of the said airline, Tablas in Romblon, as my first assignment. HE prepared me for the PAL job by exposing me to office work when I was hired by the Department of Social Welfare when I was about to graduate from college. HE made me finish my college despite the impending odds, as after our batch of less than a hundred that represented four courses, the college department of Notre Dame of Tacurong closed down.

 

A guy, I did not personally know, being just a friend of my friend, and who was working with PAL in General Santos station was instrumental in my “entry” to the said airline by sending me a telegram with just my nickname on it but with my office address to tell me about their recruitment. Out of almost a hundred applicants coming from prestigious colleges in Koronadal City and Cotabato City, only four of us were able to hurdle the preliminary interview. At the General Santos station, my documents were lost but HE made me go through the final interview in Davao station based on the trust of the interviewers from Manila…with an arrangement for my documents to be submitted later. HE made me work for an airline despite my AB course intended for teaching.

 

HE prepared me for my writing which could have been my real purpose in life. When I was in first year High School, I was made to edit the high school organ, THE GREEN EMBER, although, while in elementary, I was already composing poems and “tula”. I used the skill to work my way through my difficult journey along the corridor of PAL, with the editorship of the company’s TOPIC Magazine as another junction of my career. I went around the country because of the job exposing me to different realities of life.

 

My writing made me express what I saw and experienced while living in Manila. An important episode of my career in PAL was having been absorbed by the International Sales department , the airline’s flagship with offices located along Roxas Boulevard in Ermita…the “red district” of Manila. I made the area as my base as I explored the “other side” of the big city that brought me to Divisoria and the slums of Tondo. In those places, HE showed me the disgusting faces of poverty. HE made me realize that poverty is more of a result of corruption and exploitation, than indolence.

 

Along Avenida of Sta. Cruz, streets of Ermita and the dark nooks of Roxas Boulevard, HE showed me the various faces of prostitution etched on the faces of the juvenile males and females to the heavily made up faces of matrons with advancing age of as old as 60! HE showed me the various faces of poverty suffered by new-born infants to the dying emaciated bodies on sidewalks.

 

HE made me write against corruption, exploitation….expound on the causes of poverty, prostitution and drug addiction. HE made me write about the neglected communities whose members fled from the unrest and hunger in their birthplace in Jolo and Tawi-tawi…the Badjaos. HE made me expose to the world the aspiration of those who want to have a better life and the desire of others to reach out to HIS other creatures.

 

But I still feel inadequate despite all that I have been doing for HIM and my fellowmen….I still feel that I owe HIM a lot for my life…for which a “Thank you, Lord” is not enough.

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My Sincere Prayer of Gratitude…as a simple blogger

My Sincere Prayer of Gratitude

…as a simple blogger

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

Thank you Lord,

…for leading me to people whose good deeds need to be exposed that they may inspire others;

…for giving me the courage to call the attention of fellowmen for their misdeeds;

…for the prayers of those who appreciate what I do, and which provide me with strength;

…for the encouragement of friends who give me inspiration;

…for the vintage laptop that has been helping me a lot;

…for the cellphone with camera that a cousin gave for quick photo shots of my subjects;

…for the strong wi-fi signal in the home of a cousin where I do my blogs;

…for the hi-tech communication system without which, my effort would be futile;

…for the tranquil nights and dawns during which I wake up to jot down prospective blogs;

…for words that come into my mind, and which I could develop into blogs;

…for the fingers that have recovered from carpal tunnel syndrome, so that I could work fast;

…for the effort of a nephew who provided me fast mobility with his motorcycle;

…for a stomach that could withstand pangs of hunger;

…for the lungs that have resisted the onset of respiratory ailments;

…for the nose that have been straining the polluted air;

…for my overall health to keep me going;

…for the strong comments of viewers who affirm my views;

…for the extras that I could spare for others;

…for making me wake up with sprite at dawn to prepare myself for the day;

…for the compassionate viewers who make donations for blogged needy people.

 

I pray that You continue to keep me and the rest with similar advocacy as mine, in the shadow of your protection at all times.

 

Amen!

Praying man silhoutte

Dasal Para sa Mga Dapat Pasalamatan at Dapat Magbago

Dasal Para sa Mga Dapat Pasalamatan

At Dapat Magbago

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Lord…

Salamat sa mga biyayang ibinigay Mo at kasabay niyan ay isinasama namin ang mga sumusunod, pati na rin ang dasal para sa mga dapat magbago….

 

  • ang mga sardinas na nagpakatanga upang maisiksik sa lata at may makain ang mga kinakapos ng budget o tamad magluto

 

  • ang mga isdang itinahaya sa ilalim ng matinding init ng araw upang maging daing na paboritong pangsahog sa mga gulay

 

  • ang mga isdang tunsoy (variety ng tamban) na pinausukan upang maging masarap na “tinapang tunsoy” ng Cavite

 

  • ang mga hayop na kinatay upang ang kanilang bangkay ay malaplapan ng mga karneng gagawing bacon, tocino, steak at marami pang ibang mga pagkaing pina-“gwapa” ng mga kemikal upang malapang ng mga carnivorous na human beings

 

  • ang mga isda sa karagatan na nilambat upang mailutong paksiw, inihaw at pinirito

 

  • ang mga tanim na tinalbusan upang maging green salad ng mga vegetarian

 

  • ang mga mister na nagpapakabayani sa pagluto para sa mga tamad na asawa at anak na walang ginawa kundi magkipagtsismisan sa kapitbahay at mag-chat, respectively

 

  • ang mga misis na nagbubulag-bulagan sa pakikiapid ng kanilang mister for the sake of their children, kaya ayaw humiwalay

 

  • ang mga balasubas na ayaw magbayad sa traysikel at jeep na sinakyan…sana sila ay madapa, eheste…magbago na

 

  • ang mga estudyanteng nagka-copy/paste ng mga nire-research kuno sa internet upang gawing thesis…na sana ay magbago ng ugali, upang hindi masanay sa pandadaya na delikadong maging ugali at magamit nila kung empleyado na sila ng gobyerno

 

  • ang mga walang kaluluwang mga nagtitinda sa palengke na naghuhugas ng mga gulay sa pamamagitan ng sabon panlaba at nagbababad sa formalin ng mga isa, at tawas sa mga gulay tulad ng talong, langka, kamatis, sitaw, pipino, at marami pang iba….na sana ay magbago na

 

  • ang mga nagpaparetoke ng mukha hanggang magmukhang inambalsamo kaya masakit sa paningin….na sana ay itabi na lang ang pera at ilimos sa mga pulubi

 

  • ang mga alagad ng simbahang ayaw pumasok sa mga squatter’s area dahil takot tamaan ng “Indian pana”…upang sana ay maging matapang tulad ni Superman at Tarzan

 

  • ang mga pa-ingles-ingles na mga Pinoy kahit ang kaharap ay alam na nilang ang pandinig sa salitang nabanggit ay Latin o Greek….sana ay bumaluktot ang dila ng ilang oras lang upang magkaroon ng katinuan at magsalita uli sa Tagalog o sariling dialect

 

  • Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera pa…dahil All Knowing po naman Kayo ay alam Nyo na kung sino ang mga tinutukoy kong hindi na mailista dahil nakakapagod na ang pagsambit…

 

AMEN!

Strong Faith in God and the Resilience of the Filipino

Strong Faith in God

And the Resilience of the Filipino

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

In the face of adversities, the Filipino has always been strong, steely- willed and resilient. It is this supple character that makes him adjust to any condition after a catastrophe. His unquestionable faith in God is the vigor that makes him move on and hurdle the rest of hindrances along the way.

 

No man-made or natural catastrophe can ever make the Filipino turn his back from God. For him, all these are just trials that make his faith stronger. He knows that God will never give him a challenge that he cannot muster. He knows that all these are the proverbial litters of stones and thorns along the way of his journey to the waiting arms of the Lord.

 

Life is beautiful. But everything in the universe has its end. To prepare himself for this, the Filipino has even shown greater faith in God by becoming more aware of His presence. Religious movements are on the rise. Humble prayers for mercy have grown louder. The Filipino can be likened to Tobit and  Job, Biblical characters whose lives were full of challenges that put their faith to an acid test.

 

God manifests His consolations in mysterious and unexpected ways. It could be His way of showing His love to the Filipinos as a people. The Philippines is profusely endowed with natural resources. The Filipino has an easy smile and has the habit of taking a scandal lightly and make it worthy of a good laugh, without losing its serious color.

 

God has chosen a people in the past – the Israelites, as the Bible says….they, who had to roam around the desert for forty years. Today, He must have chosen a new one – the Filipinos who are engulfed in controversies and series of misfortunes…but for how long will the Filipinos be tested by the Him?

 

 

Manalig nang Walang Pag-alinlangan at Huwag Pairalin ang Kayabangan

Manalig nang Walang Pag-alinlangan

At Huwag Pairalin ang Kayabangan

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Hindi madali ang basta na lang maniwala sa mga bagay na hindi nakikita. Lalong hindi madaling gawin ito  ng isang tao na ang palagay sa sarili ay “napakatalino” na dahil sa maraming kaalamang nakuha sa mga sa mga libro at mga ibinahagi sa kanya ng mga guro. Subali’t paano na kung may mga katanungang hindi kayang sagutin maski ng agham o siyensiya? Basta na lamang ba itong ipagkibit-balikat at isasantabi?

 

Hangga’t may bahid ng pag-alinlangan, halimbawa,  ang pananalig ng isang tao sa Pinakamakapangyarihan sa lahat, hindi mamamayani ang takot sa kanyang puso sa paggawa ng masama dahil sa kanyang kaisipan, walang nagbabantay sa kanya, walang manunumbat, at siya lamang ang tanging nakakaalam kung ano ang tama o mali. Mas gugustuhin pa niyang mamayani ang kanyang pananalig sa mga batas ng pamahalaan.

 

Hindi maikakaila ang tibay ng mga bagay na tinatakan ng mga simbolo at kasulatan na may kinalaman sa Manlilikha. Sa kabila ng kung ilang libong taon na ang lumipas, may mga bahagi pa ring natira upang patunayan na ang mga nakasaad sa Bibliya ay totoo. Dahil sa tuluy-tuloy na pananaliksik, tuloy din ang pagtambad sa mata ng tao ang mga katunayan na noong unang panahon pa man ay nandiyan na Siya at pilit nagpapahiwatig ng di-masukat Niyang kapangyarihan. Maraming mga nadiskubre ang hindi maipaliwanag hanggang ngayon na sa halip na pagtuunan ng pansin, ay mas pinili ng taong laktawan at pagtuunan ng pansin ang paghalughog sa napakalawak na kalangitan gamit ang sarili niyang kaalaman. Nag-aalinlangan ang taong umamin na may Isang napakamakapangyarihan sa lahat na siyang dahilan ng mga hindi maipaliwanag na mga bagay sa sanlibutan at sa kalawakan.

 

Gusto ng taong mas kilalanin ang kanyang kakayahan at kaalaman kaya kung anu-ano na lang ang kanyang ginagawa tulad ng pagbuhay ng isang patay sa pamamagitan ng pagpapatibok ng puso nito gamit ang isang makina, pagpupunla ng isang buhay gamit ang isang bahagi ng tao na matagal nang namayapa, pagbabago ng mga likas na katangian ng mga tanim at hayop, paggawa ng mga sasakyang nakakarating sa ibang planeta, at iba upang maihalintulad siya sa Diyos.

 

Subali’t sa kabila ng mga kaalaman ng tao para ipakita na siya man ay maaaring umaktong Diyos, bakit hindi pa rin niya mapigilan ang mga dilubyo na dulot ng  mga mapaminsalang baha, bagyo at lindol? Bakit hindi  niya mapigilan ang pag-alburuto ng mga bulkan sa pagpakawala ng kanilang kinukuyom na lakas na pinaghalong abo, mga bato at apoy? Bakit hindi niya  maawat ang pagtigang ng lupa sa ibang kontinente upang magresulta sa malawakang gutom dahil sa pagkalanta ng mga pananim? Bakit hindi niya mapigilan ang pagsibol ng mga bagong sakit na nagdudulot ng pinsala sa iba’t ibang dako ng mundo?

 

Saan hahantong ang kayabangan ng tao? Bakit hindi na lang niya pairalin ang pananalig na walang pag-alinlangan nang sa gayon, kahi’t papaano ay matanggap niya na ang mga nangyayari sa kanyang kapaligiran ay hindi saklaw ng kaalaman niyang may hangganan?

 

Dahil nananaig ang kayabangan kaysa pananalig, ang tao ay hindi magkakaroon ng takot sa puso , kaya siya ay makakagawa ng masama sa kapwa. At lalong hangga’t  nasa kaisipan niya ang magdiyus-diyosan, ang mundo ay hindi magkakaroon ng katahimikan …dahil hindi lang iisang tao ang may ganitong paniniwala…marami – silang  gustong umangat sa pamamagitan ng pagtapak sa karapatan ng iba…silang mga lango sa kapangyarihang dulot ng pera, kaalaman, at katungkulan!

 

 

Use the God-given Talent Properly and for the Benefit of Others

USE THE GOD-GIVEN TALENT PROPERLY

AND FOR THE BENEFIT OF OTHERS

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

If God gave you the talent to invent gadgets, come up with what are useful to make life comfortable. If He gave you the talent to sing…make others happy, instead of singing to yourself inside the bathroom. If He gave you the talent to write and which you have discovered, perhaps, inadvertently, help others to discover theirs, and write what are relevant and helpful….do not foment misunderstanding among readers by coming up with lopsided information or exposes.

 

Today, the counterpart of the print media journalists are the so-called “bloggers”, those who write on the cyberspace sites, most particularly, on facebook which is the most popular. Unfortunately, many of the so-called “bloggers” use their talent for purely bashing intent. They post photos and short write-ups which most often contain or imply negative messages about a person, entity, or the government. Blogging, especially, visuals of untoward crime-related incidents could help in solving cases, but not the photos with short captions that present only one side. There is nothing wrong with posting negative comments, but such should be “balanced” with the blogger’s suggestions on how what he observed to be bad can be transformed into something good… an opinion for which he is entitled.

 

Many so-called bloggers have obviously are abusing the free opportunity offered by the IT sites purportedly for the benefit of humanity. Many of them feel great just because they have posted just anything to solicit attention to their site. Blogging should be viewed as an advocacy to share the good that others have done to inspire others, as well as, the bad to caution others but with accompanying precautions on how to avoid them or at the very least, suggestions based on the writer’s opinion.

 

If the blogger is from a small community, in all probability, there is a chance that he could get in touch personally with people who are the subject of his blogs. There is nothing wrong with introducing himself as a blogger followed by expressing his intention to help to correct what he views as wrong. If the blogger believes that he has a “mission” that is why God gave him such kind of talent, by all means, he should be serious about it. But if his intention is just to become known by bashing others, then he should be reminded by the “Golden Rule” – do not do to others what you do not want others would do to you.