Frohe Weihnachten

I’m playing Coldplay’s Christmas Light while typing this entry and I feel all loved up inside since Christmas is my favorite celebration.

For me, Christmas means home. I always look forward to this day because when I was still in the Philippines, I always come and visit my family, if I have a visa. Now that I’m finally settled here in Hamburg, I don’t have to go through the stress of visa application and working my ass off just to buy plane tickets. I don’t have to worry at all because I am home and boy, did I have a wonderful celebration.

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The setup

I took care of our Christmas table this year and printed Christmas menu for everyone’s entertainment.

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Private jokes here and there

Filipino celebration means having food that will last for weeks. This year’s a little different since we didn’t do the traditional Filipino feast and went the other Asian route: Hotpot!

That was a new, fun experience. Our pot wasn’t boiling at first and it was a test of patience. Small arguments happened because hello, hangry people. We almost gave up and took the big pot in the kitchen so that we can do the normal boiling. Only to find out that we’re just doing it wrong. Haha! We brought the pot back to the table and finished all the food we shoved in our pot. Everyone needed tea afterward.

After dinner came the main source of entertainment: Karaoke. Filipino Christmas parties would be incomplete without it. We sang our voices away until the clock strikes 12. I was mostly looking forward to it because….

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Overflowing gifts!! I was fixing our tree hours before our dinner and got super duper excited arranging all the gifts. I am proud to share that I controlled myself and didn’t shake the boxes which belonged to me.

We did our yearly exchange gift and unwrapped our other gifts afterward. My best gift this year was something from my mom’s, particularly because of its backstory.

Me wondering what could that gift be

My family imposed that we should all have our Christmas wish list so everyone would get what they wanted. They said that’s generally how Germans are and it would be nice (and actually more practical) to adapt it. I made my own list and asked my mom to buy me an ink for my printer. Three days before Christmas, I saw that my mom gave my brother a new, huge comforter. On top of it, my brother forgot to do his wishlist so this was a surprise. Because I was P-E-T-T-Y, I told my mom that I don’t want an ink anymore. I want to be surprised! That’s it. That’s my wish. I wanted to be like…

It could be anything though and that was the beauty of it. Fast forward to Christmas night, I got my gift last and saw this huge box. I opened it and then..

It was a printer. Haha. But wait there’s more…. I can not only print, but also scan and copy! A student’s dream. Hahaha

IMG_0693.JPGThe best part is.. I was totally surprised! It never crossed my mind that she will buy me such a gift. For this reason alone, this printer is the best material gift I got this Christmas.

Family, however, still remains my most favorite present every year. Aside from our annual family photo, these photos below mean a lot to me since my younger brother joined our celebration for the first time ever and didn’t lock himself up in his room. His presence was felt and he even made something for dinner. I am glad that his annoying teenage phase is over and I am praying that it’ll be the end of it.

And since here in Germany, we celebrate Christmas officially for two days (the 26th is the 2nd Christmas Day), my greeting would still be on time. And not to use the cliché caption, I’ll just use another language….

Von unserer Familie zu euch wünsche ich euch eine frohe Weihnachten! Lass uns alle an den echten Sinn des Weihnachtfestes errinnern, die Geburt Jesus. Thank you Jesus for the gift of family ❤

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My desert story

I wanted to share my testimony of patience and endurance but I couldn’t figure how to say it the right way without blabbering. Therefore, let me just give you an almost-detailed timeline of this long and trying season of mine.

Me, figuratively. Illustration by my good friend.

Continue reading My desert story

Lent Reflections : Easter Sunday

Lent Reflections


1 Corinthians 15


Two years ago, I got a text message from my uncle telling me that my grandmother passed away. I knew it was coming since my Lola had a tough battle with cancer but still, it was indescribable when the inevitable meets you straight in the face. I was home alone that dawn; I remembered I couldn’t think straight.I walked out of my room and sat outside with the security guard. I guess at that time, I desperately needed a companion. Not that I talked to the guard, I just want to see someone other than the dark. I was carrying my bible at that  moment and I prayed to God these words, “Lord, did my Lola surrender to You? Where is she now?” God answered my question with 1 Corinthians 15. It was very comforting and reassuring. Death had no power over my Lola, God had and has. As you can see, 1 Corinthians 15 holds a special place in my heart because of this event. Now, imagine how emotional I got when the Pastor preached 1 Corinthians 15 this afternoon.

If we don’t believe in the power of resurrection, then our faith is futile. Now, what does it mean to truly believe in the resurrection? 

To believe in the power of resurrection is to live victoriously and free from the sin that so easily entangles, to break free from its bondage. It is putting our sins to death and being made alive in Christ. It is never fearing death for death is inevitable but eternal life is imperishable. One day, I’m going to meet my Creator just as my Lola did and thinking about it now scares me but thank God for His perfect love for driving out this fear. Believing in the resurrection gives us the gift of eternal life and that small minute of fearing for death is incomparable to what’s coming ahead. Our time here on earth is just a short stop compared to the eternity Jesus has prepared for us.

Jesus is no longer in the tomb, He has risen! Until now, we can feel His presence in the million of lives which goes to show that the God we serve is not a dead god, but A LIVING GOD. He is alive in us!


Thank you, Abba Father, for giving us your one and only son, Jesus Christ. Thank you, Jesus Christ, for the gift of salvation and eternal life. One day I’m going to meet you face to face and I hope I’ll hear the words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant”. But until then, I will decide everyday to choose You more than anything else; to remind myself of your sacrifice, to obey your commands, to love you, and to believe in the power of resurrection. Through you, Jesus, I am no longer dead to my sins. Because of you, I am victorious conqueror. Thank you Jesus for making all things new. Today I honor and give all the praise to a living God. In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen.



Thank you very much for visiting my Lent Devotionals this week. I’m glad to be able to share Jesus with you and know yours as well. God bless you 🙂

Lent Reflections : Black Saturday

Smith & Sons


Mark 14, 15, 16


The woman broke her jar of a very expensive perfume and poured it on Jesus’ head. The jar was broken into pieces, with no possibility of reusing or replacing the perfume. A few verses later, Jesus broke the bread, His body, into pieces and offered it to us just so we could live an eternal life; free from the bondage of our sins.

The woman gave us an image of what a life surrendered to Jesus Christ looks like. We give our all, leaving nothing behind. We don’t keep anything for safety measures. The world may equate surrendering to defeat but in God’s eyes, surrendering means victory. Jesus giving up his life on the cross is the greatest victory mankind has ever experienced. Admittedly, I am in a process of laying  my everything to Jesus Christ; my control, my desires, my future plans. It won’t be hard as long as I keep my eyes focused on Jesus Christ and remind myself daily that He gave his life for me.

Let me end my reflection with this question, “Are we willing to break down our personal jars and offer it to Jesus Christ?”


Lord Jesus Christ, you surrendered your life to us so we can have an eternal life with You. Allow us to do the same for you. Give us the grace to surrender our all; the strength to break down our personal jars and offer it to you. We want to surrender to You because we love you. We want to surrender because we want to know You. We want to surrender because we want to give you all the control. Be the King in my life, Jesus Christ. Take control. To You, I surrender. Amen.


Lent Reflections : Good Friday



Luke 21-22


Jesus Christ knew he was going to die an extremely painful death and his response was very simple, to pray to the Father. Before being taken away by the guards in the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus commanded his disciples to pray, so that they (you) will not fall into temptation (Luke 22:40). Jesus’ parting words to his disciples that night is an image to what our prayer life should be like. When I became a Christian, my prayer life went from nothing to everything. However, there are also times when I haven’t been praying enough—meaning, I wasn’t praying sincerely as I should be. I was praying like a pagan. I thank the Holy Spirit for the conviction because I can immediately get back up, repent, and pray to my Father in Heaven.

Luke 22:40 is a great reminder that we should always be on our guard and pray. The enemy is waiting for every open opportunity that we fall into temptation and we will not let the enemy get his way. During his darkest days, Jesus Christ prayed and let this be our inspiration to never let a day pass without praying to the Father. As we bow our knees in prayer, we get a glimpse of Heaven. As we humble ourselves and pray, we see our Lord Jesus Christ.


Thank you Jesus for teaching us how to pray and the importance of prayer. May I always be on my guard and remain standing firm on the faith you have given me. Lord Jesus Christ, today Your image of praying on the garden hours before your suffering will give me the strength and the motivation to persevere and to keep on walking. I pray today with my whole being; I bow my knees and look to You. In your mighty name. Amen.



Lent Reflections: Maundy Thursday



John 18, 19, 20 & 21


I am a big fan of  US series. Every now and then, I go on a binge-watch especially the ones on Netflix (i.e Narcos, House of Cards) or if I have to catch up (i.e Mr. Robot, Sherlock). I’m a pretty responsive viewer, might I add. The way I watch my television series transcends to my Bible-reading habit. I catch myself saying, “OH NO!” “WHAT!” “WHAAAAAT?!” and “AWWWWs” each time I read exciting stories in the Bible—the passion, death, and resurrection of Christ is one of them. What separates the Bible from my TV series is of course, the Bible is my identity. My history is recorded in those pages.

When I think of what happened to Jesus two thousand years ago, I sometimes imagine myself being in the shoes of his disciple. What could I have done if I was in there position? Would I have deny Him, too? Would I hide? Would I be strong enough to stand up for Jesus? Would I believe when Jesus said He would rise in three days? I don’t know what I could have done but I always take comfort in the fact that Jesus did all these things so I wouldn’t do anything more. 

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have seen and yet have believed.” (John 20: 29) I may not be there to witness what happened two thousand years ago but I have the Bible; it’s my only passage to the event that changed history and my life’s story. Some may question the authenticity of the Bible but I am a proof, along with the billions of people around the world. We are His witnesses. We have not seen, we have read, we have felt and we believe. What a great story. 


Jesus, thank you for sharing your story. Yours is the greatest one ever told. Allow us to be Your witnesses here on Earth. Help us to be bold enough to share the wonderful message of the Gospel. May we not live in fear and in doubt but move in truth, in love, and in faith. Amen.


Lent Reflections : Holy Wednesday



John 17


Ever heard of Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot? Simply put, Earth is just a tiny, lonely, blue dot in the vast universe. We are considered mere specks living in this dot. But that’s Carl Sagan. For Jesus, we are much more than a dot. We are too important that He even died in our place.

During Jesus’ last days on Earth, He prayed to the Father on our behalf. His prayer is a mirror to how Jesus sees us. We belong to the Father (John 17:6), we have been chosen to be His witnesses for God’s glory (John 17:21), and we are one with Him (John 17:23). If the world thinks that we are just a speck, Jesus sees us as His everything. He is thinking of us all the time, even to the point of death. When I was starting to have a relationship with Jesus, I used to question my identity. What am I here for? What is my purpose? Who am I? Why me, Lord? The answers I’ve been looking for were right in front of me. I look around and all I can see are His creations. The sky, the food, the house, the animals, the air.. me. I belong to Christ. My identity is in Christ. The reason why I can enjoy this life I have is because someone died on the cross thousands of years ago… and that changes everything. We are more than a speck in this tiny blue dot. We belong to a big God who made this same vast universe so to consider ourselves as a speck is an insult to His greatness. We are His.


Jesus, my mind cannot fathom your greatness and your love for us… me, a sinner. During your last days on Earth, you thought of me. You interceded for us. Thank you Jesus for showing and teaching me who I really am. My identity is in You. You are my God, my Savior, and everything that I am is in You. Amen.


Lent Reflections : Holy Tuesday



John 15


I am on a Daniel Fast this week and it was harder than I expected since I have to take out coffee in my daily routine. I’ve been drinking coffee for as long as I can remember; my guardians did not adhere to the no-coffee-for-kids rule. It’s only Day 2 and I can already feel the effects of caffeine withdrawal–if there is such a thing. This morning, I read John 15 and reflected upon Jesus cutting off branches that doesn’t bear fruit. Jesus’ way of cutting off my unfruitful branches is incomparable, even fasting from coffee cannot come close to the struggle, the pain and even the rewards that one would reap.

I remember the many times Jesus destroyed my branches and prune some. Until now, I can feel Jesus pruning my character. It was rough, ten times (even more) harder than not-drinking coffee BUT I’m glad Jesus is merciful enough to allow me to bear fruit. I used to consider myself a useless branch but Jesus saw something in me. Jesus chose me (John 15:16). My response is to stay close to my  Vine, to cling onto Him, to remain in Him, and to let Him do the work in me.


Thank you, Abba Father, for being our Gardener. I am grateful for the many instances that you pruned my character and cut off the things that brought me harm. Every pruning season was tough but I look back and all I can say is “I’m glad it happened.” Thank you, Jesus, for being my Vine. I look only to You and all I want is to remain in Your love. Thank you for choosing us to be your fruitful branches so that we can also be a blessing to other people who don’t know you yet. Allow me to stay in Your vine till my last breath here on Earth. Amen.


Last Album Syndrome: Wings (EP)

I never truly appreciated Christian music until I began to have a relationship with Jesus. There were moments that God used several songs to speak to me & I returned my gratefulness by singing my heart out loud. Unfortunately, there was a time that I lost the passion to sing His praises especially during seasons of waiting & pruning. But of course, God would not allow a stagnant relationship so He directed me to this album.

I have been listening to this EP every morning for a month and I am not close to getting old of it. This album has encouraged me in many ways and it has brought back the spirit of worship that I somehow lost along a rocky season. I hope that in the same way, it will encourage you as well.

But as for me, I will sing about your power. Each morning I will sing with joy about your unfailing love.

Psalm 59:16