CFC SFL Cubao
There are still few days before 2012 ends, but I can already say that this has been an awesome year for me. Together with the theme of the community “Choose Life”, God has revealed to me his greater love by allowing me to experience the changes in the different aspects of my life. I started working at BPI on January 16, 2012. This year I became a household servant in Cubao. I was called to be an SFL Mission Volunteer on June 2012. I experienced loss of a loved one, my grandmother. I just experienced the gift of mission in SFL community in Visayas.
Last September 2, 2012, right after our CSW at Angels’ Hills Tagaytay, I remembered I was invited by Ate Kuh to join the mission in Iloilo. I was actually praying to join one given the limited number of leaves since I was regularized August. I can’t remember my exact response, all I know is that I was excited and the next thing I knew is that we were already booked last September 26 and I have a specific role to play in the Western Visayas CSW scheduled November 24-25.
My first mission trip was last year when I was still serving in YFL. I joined the trip in Cebu and Bohol without plans or responsibilities assigned. It was perfectly fine since I am the type of person who just wants to go even without knowing the specific activities to do. This year, however, is different. Ate Kuh sent her email about our tasks and the program flow. I was assigned as her co-director. Wow! I knew it will be an exciting experience. I started preparing the worship songs to be used and taught. What was surprising was a week before the trip, Ate Kuh asked me to give the Speaking God’s Word workshop. My first reaction was “Sure ka ate?” Honestly speaking, I loved listening to talks but giving talks especially in SFL is way different for me. I remembered that my first talk in SFL was a month before this mission trip. It was during our assembly. The second was in Parañaque’s HST and now, the topic is about speaking? I was afraid talking to people whom I think have lots of expectations since SFLs are already working. Since Ate Kuh was sure, and I am sure I’ll just be there, then I said to myself, “why not?”
Kuya Ian, Kuya EY, Kuya Mark (from Tarlac), and I arrived in Iloilo on a Friday which was supposed to be also the days I was in Batangas for our planning at work. Fortunately, I was able to join the first day (which is the teambuilding part) at the very relaxing, Balinese-inspired place, Cintai. That day, November 23, was allotted for the preparation and recollection of the servants but we were able to rest first in the afternoon before meeting with the team. Even in this very gift of rest, I felt once again that God is in control. There were lots of things to prepare but I didn’t feel the panic. It was already past 7pm when we arrived at St. Clement’s Retreat House, which was also the venue for the CSW. The first thing I discovered about Iloilo is it being “the city of love”. There were lots of smiles as the team welcomed us. This is what I love about community. It’s as if you already know people for a long time as they treat you like part of their family. The recollection and the music min practice followed.
The next day, I believe, was the most challenging day for me. I was enjoying the day but I was nervous in giving theworkshop. It would be my third talk in SFL. It was so technical and I was afraid that I would be so compliant with the bulleted points. The CSW started and it was a lot fun, I love the fact that the participants were interactive. Now my thoughts are turning into reality – be clear, relate, pray as you talk, etc.
The program ran smoothly. I remember sleeping after talk 2 without us being asked to help in transferring our stuff to the chapel because another religious group reserved and will be using the one that we already occupied. The team move the sound system and other things that we’ll need for the next day without complaining, it was a humbling experience.
This mission trip is really a blessing for me. I might not be able to share other details, but here are some of the things God taught me during that Weekend.
The simple pain in my fingers as I played the guitar is a form of service. I learned playing guitar before I entered high school without any hint that I can use it in the community. There are things you might not expect to come, but if God gives it to you, use it well. His blessings should never stop on us. As we allow ourselves to become vessels of love, expect that you will never be empty. God will refill you with more, much greater love.
2. When you have the opportunity to learn and listen, grab it.
We are privileged to be here in Manila. Our brother from Tarlac who joined us in the mission admits that in their province, people are in thirst of missionaries, similar in Iloilo. We should not take for granted the fact that we are able to invite speakers/missionaries more often.
3. You work for a purpose.
I believe that we are called in different ways. We may not be all full-time missionaries, but we can always be an example even to our bosses. I remembered being asked if my officemates knew that I am an MV. I said yes then he immediately said that it’s more challenging because they might use it against your actions even if there are snipped lapses in your performance.
Another purpose is how we make use of the money we earn. I feel so blessed that I can save to be able to attend to activities and mission. It’s more fulfilling than getting the gadgets that most people eyed for.
We were also hosted by the very generous family of Tito William and Tita Bing. Thanks God for putting inspiring people who help me set goal with the purpose of serving God more. Same with them, I want to be able to host missionaries in the future. There’s a lot of work to do to be able to achieve that. I dreamed of having van to be able to bring with me more participants every activity and I still dream of a house that will be a venue for assemblies. God is continuously telling me to excel in everything I do and to dream with him.
4. Be accountable to your co-missionaries.
Usually, we pray for our household members aside from the priority list we lift everyday. I was only moved when I was asked to send my prayer concerns and also say a short for each of us going on mission. It is true that there are lots of hindrances and conflicts that might come your way before and while the mission is going but God reminded me again, our everyday battle is his.
This is what I love, but it was only in the past 2 months after I gave my first 3 talks in SFL that I realized, you will never know when your time to talk comes. Before I gave my first talk about stress management, I was able to listen to it twice for 2 consecutive weeks. I never planned to give it, but I learned that listening gets the big portion of being able to deliver it and relay the message. The Lord is telling me to never get tired of listening to his words even if you’ve attended the same activities.
6. Be passionate on what you do.
This is what I saw in our brothers and sisters in Iloilo. Even if people don’t know that you actually did it, just do it, your rewards is in heaven.
7. Be firm in your convictions.
I was also asked to share about living Christ. I shared my simple conviction of not drinking alcoholic beverage. I did not expect that I’ll be sharing about it, but living Christ means saying yes everyday to what is being asked of us.
8. When you decide, don’t regret.
No one decided for me but myself. After this mission trip, my officemates kept on telling me “sana talaga nandun ka” since I was only able to join the first day of our 3-day teambuilding/planning session in Cintai, Batangas due to conflict of schedule. This mission trip was planned ahead while the planning was only set on November. I found myself just responding to them “Ok lang, Masaya rin talaga ako sa napuntahan ko.” Some people might not know the joy of going on mission, but I believe, I can be a better witness if I stand firm on what I decided to do and be completely happy about it.
I enjoyed the company of SFL missionaries, the service team and the participants. The time was not enough for me to know them more but I’m very thankful because once again, God re-fueled me for my mission in my own district, my own family and my work. I feel life more when I’m being used by God and now I’m looking forward to saving more for the mission. I’m excited to witness another Jesus experience again. By the way, we went straight to work on November 26, filled with love and strength from the Lord.
Tags: catholic community, catholic community for singles, catholic group, catholic group for singles, cfc sfl, cfcsfl, committed servants weekend, God, jesus, jesus christ, singles for family and life