Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Don't Run Off Thinking You're Right and Telling Everyone that They're Wrong: On the Black Nazarene, Among Other Things

This may be a late post but I just can't take it anymore. I am not a devotee nor an advocate of the Black Nazarene but sheesh, why don't the others just keep their ideas to themselves or to their groups?

A lot of people have been quoting the Bible about idolatry and fanaticism, how the Catholics have gone overboard with their devotion. How the Catholics pray and worship idols, like the saints and even *gasp* the Black Nazarene.

News Flash everyone, the Black Nazarene represents Jesus. JESUS CHRIST our SAVIOR.The devotees and what you call the "fanatics" worship JESUS. What's wrong with worshiping God?

The Black Nazarene is merely a symbol of faith, a representation of Jesus at one point in his life.

Is worth the trouble? Is it worth dying for?
I haven't been to any of these public displays of affection to the image of the Black Nazarene, or of any saint for that matter, but I believe, if you truly love someone, anything is worth doing. They believe in Jesus and in Jesus' healing power, thus people go to witness his love. Some manifest their love and adoration by helping pull the carriage. Is that wrong? Tell me is it wrong to love God and tell me it's wrong to go to Jesus and ask for your or your loved ones' healing? 

Self Righteous Much?
Those who are casting stones on the Catholic faith, please stop assuming that you're right. Yes I know we have the Bible as our guide but can you personally guarantee that the people who pledge to do this every year will suffer the fires of hell? Only God can tell if we Catholics acted foolishly or not. It's not for you to decide. It's not for you to point fingers.

We should all learn something from our 'playground' days
When we were kids, we knew how to respect each other, or at least know to get along peacefully in the playground. You don't play on the seesaws when you see kids using it. You don't tell people off for using your favorite swing. Likewise, please learn how to respect our religion, just as we do respect yours. You don't see (or hear) us in tv and radio with tirades of nasty remarks about your religion. You don't see us posting in facebook nor twitter, our opinion about how you do things in your religion, so just please, respect us. I'm not saying don't talk about it, by all means, rant all you want, but do it in your group, unless you want to really start something up. Because really, a lot of us take our faith SERIOUSLY. We get hurt when people think wrongly of us, when people JUDGE us because we don''t do things in the normal expected way, as written by our ancestors, through the grace of God (Gee, doesn't that sound familiar? sounds like the *cough*pha*cough*ri*cough**cough**cough*).

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Count your Blessings Insted of Sheep

With what's happening with me and my family, God, prayer and support from family & friends keep our wits together. With nothing to do in the hospital but to eat, sleep, watch tv and play games on the computer, I have had a lot time to think, reflect and be thankful, that despite the fact that we're going through this again because one of the graft's in papa's heart bypass wasn't properly done.

An "honest mistake" papa's cardiologist said. "We can't really blame the surgeon". Yeah, okay. Can't blame the surgeon about it, but we don't have deep pockets like them. I could rant on and on and on about how unfair it is but that won't take me anywhere. Instead I tried channeling this frustration into something positive.

I know that we should be thankful about this, because like last year, what we're doing is preventive. We're preventing the incident that one day, papa'll just collapse because of a heart attack. We should be thankful and I am really really thankful.

We should also be thankful, that even though the price for the angioplasty is expensive, we can still manage to pay for it, or rather, we have friends that are willing to lend the money, and that I know we are able to pay the debt off. I am thankful that we have the means resources to make the procedure possible.

I am thankful that everything's going on fine and that a lot of family and friends are praying for papa's speedy and full recovery.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Luck and Idolatry - The Sin of the New Year

I think that we (myself included) overrate the new year. What's the deal anyway? Aren't we supposed to celebrate everyday as a new year? If you look at it, today, January 2, 2012 is a new year cause it's 1 year after January 2, 2011. Just a thought.

And what's the deal with new year resolutions? I haven't made one for years. Do you really have to wait for the new year to be a better person?

I love festivities and parties; Games and food. I love that it's another holiday to celebrate. I don't mind the noise but I sure do mind the smoke. The smoke filled with gunpowder and other chemicals that make everything go BOOM and hazy. Maybe I'm irritable cause I am feeling that my lungs are so weak from all the allergies that I got this new year.

So were you able to complete your circle fruit basket and buy the various white thingies (salt, rice, etc). Were you able to waist about  hours of your life waiting for the colored candles to burn out? Did you wear something polka-dot-ty and placed coins in your pockets, then jumped and jumped when the clock struck 12 midnight? Did you buy figurines and bracelets, feng shui and astrology books to aid in you bringing in luck this 2012?

This is what bothers me most during the New Year. It's not the smog, not the ear-splitting bangs of firecrackers. It's all these frenzy for good luck. We're supposed to be Catholics, or for the most part Christians. We all go to church and attend the Mass. We sing praises, we glorify God, we ask for forgiveness and thank Him for all our blessings. We were our best clothes to church and donate money, and yet, we rely on charms, furniture arrangement and bowls of fruit for luck. We base the trajectory of our year on which candle burned fastest. We base our decisions on what our astrology forecast for the year says. People, say what's wrong with inviting luck? And with luck they think prosperity of wealth. I find it sick. I find it terribly, terribly, terribly wrong. Do you seriously think that there's such a thing as luck? Do you seriously think that there's a force far more greater than God's, which when pleased (hence the offering of fruits and a barrage of other charms) will give you prosperity, more than what God will provide? Think now.

Luck is some sort of idolatry - without a physical idol that we can look at, but most people worship it. Most people worship luck, and the frightening part of it is that they are not aware of it. They think that they're not doing anything wrong. Forgive me for my over-analyzing mind, but I feel strongly about this and I am fearful that a lot of us (myself included) have broken the first commandment without realizing it.

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you
Mathew 6 :33

Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases,  Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies
Psalm 103:2-4

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Romans 8:28