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April 27, 2010 by by Fiona Mae Alvero

15328_1354171147822_1637755988_850897_8060240_nSince my internship began, I left my blog site with no updates even if I have a lot of stories to tell. I don’t have much time now but let me try to share to you just bits of what’s up.

I am working for two companies every week. It sounds messy and hard but I found ways to work it out so that things don’t clutter and conflict with each other. So I am currently working for Flippish (TV Production) and Philippine Star (Journalism) now. Even from the start I wanted to try TV Production and Journalism, but it wasn’t my plan to work for the companies I am in right now — it was all God’s plan. I had my own plans straight and clear but thank God that He knows better than I am. Proverbs 19:21 (NIV) says “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” The MSG version goes “We humans keep brainstorming options and plans, but God’s purpose prevails. ”

In Philippine Star, we usually attend press conferences and cover news stories. We get to be pampered with a lot of freebies and buffet meals, we are treated like VIPs, sometimes they even drive us around. Inspite all the perks we get as reporters/journalists, I learned that working in media isn’t a glamorous job. You’ve got to always be on time and on the go, ready to run or go to the most crowdy places. Sometimes even, to wait in police offices and look at blotter reports for stories to write (thank God I was spared, I don’t need to do this!).

In Flippish, we do shootings and productions. We make the phone calls, do the leg work and logistics, they also give us chance to write the script and segment produce. Our job is to make sure that everything works fine. And if there’s a last person entitled to complain, that would be us. It is a humbling experience. I learned a lot about humility in this field of work. I also learned the importance of every small work you do.

I am glad to be in these fields of work. I get to experience the best of both worlds. I’m living the dream.

I also appreciated school and being a student even more the moment I started experiencing work. Working isn’t a joke. It isn’t easy. Students are very much blessed they just go to school everyday and learn. You heard me right. (I’ll discuss more of this on a separete blog soon)

A lot of times I’ve been emotional with the season I am in right now. A lot of times I cried to sleep at night. It was so uncomfortable in the past few days but I was able to get the hang of it eventually. Every day is a new adventure in a foggy road. But a lot of people are there supporting me, people who are praying for me and believing in me even if sometimes I don’t believe in myself.

It gets clearer and clearer to me also where God wants to lead me after college. He’s giving me visions after visions. And each day at work is a new revelation of who my God is. My prayer is that at the end of my internship, I will be able to know Him more.

Funny thing is that I have no idea how I survive each day, but one thing I am sure of – when we obey God, do what He says and go to the place He wants us to be, He goes with us. He always does.

And ultimately, His grace is sufficient.

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9

 I just don’t know how long I can endure if it wasn’t for His beauty. :) :) :)

April 24, 2010 by by Fiona Mae Alvero

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Gavs, Babes and I just watched the movie “Back Up Plans” starring Jennifer Lopez.

J. Lo played the character named Zoe, a woman in her thirties and still a single. And like any other girls, she wants to have her own family someday. She’s been dating for years but then she thought waiting for the right one has been taking too long so she decided to just consider her back up plan – artificial insemination.

Doing so would make her a single parent for sure. She has no husband or boyfriend that time when she decided that she’d like to have her own baby. With her status, she thought of joining a support group for proud single parents who happens to describe themselves as single, parent and proud (seriously, they said that in the film). She did it because she wants to make sure that there are people around her who will support and be there for her when times gets tough.

Apparently, as the story progressed, she met a guy who loved her for who she was – even with the inseminated baby inside her tummy. They fell in love with each other and decided to commit. One time during the support group meeting, Zoe told the group about the situation she got in hoping that the other girls will give her advice just like what they usually do. But they didn’t. They thought since Zoe has now a different status from them, she no longer fits in the group and they need to make a decision whether they would keep Zoe in the group or not – because she has a boyfriend now, just because in the support group they should all agree to be single, parent and proud.

As I was watching this part of the movie, what came to my mind was the group of people who I consider and act like a “support group” to me. These are people who I share my life with, who I learn from and help me with my walk with God. Then I thought if I do something wrong or something that will define me differently as they are, would they keep me still? Would they still allow me to stay?

The truth is, if my “support group” is like that of Zoe’s, I’d probably be kicked out by now. But what I love about having these kinds of people around is that if I do something wrong or if I disappoint them, they never would give up on me. These are also the people that when times gets really tough, they back me up.

Sometimes we become a person that our own versions of support groups would hate to love. And when that happens, they kick us out. When we fail to meet their expectations to us or when we do something that isn’t pleasant in their eyes, they could easily drop us out. Isn’t that unfair? But sometimes that’s reality, people can leave us when they think that we no longer fit.

I am thankful that I have a “support group” that really supports in every sense of the word. When I am in my most horrible self, they don’t vote me out. They direct my path when I walk on the wrong road, they encourage and correct me until I get the lesson, they pray and intercede for me, they don’t look at me as a different person and judge me when I sin. Ultimately, they bring me back to the truth, and they help me know God more. :)

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. – Hebrews 10:24-25

05/01/10 11:08pm

April 12, 2010 by by Fiona Mae Alvero

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When Facebook and Twitter came along, it became the best place for us to express our thoughts and emotions. Before, we were able to live our lives even without having to shout to the world about what we are doing. But now, it’s as if a day is incomplete if we fail to share online about what’s on our minds or where we are at the moment.

Creating accounts on these social networking sites gave us a lot of benefits especially when it comes to communication and keeping in touch with friends. It also became an avenue for us to be kept updated. Sometimes it becomes our shock absorber or a best friend of sorts. But ultimately, I believe one of the main reasons why we love to stay and keep our accounts is that we can express ourselves and be heard freely by a lot of people – such thing that sometimes we love to abuse.

Guilty.

I realize life was more peaceful before when these social networking sites have not yet existed. Or at least, before people started to use them as an avenue to express all the emotions they feel – whether it brings out something good or bad. It was more peaceful before because when one person wants to bash another person, it’s just between the two of them and it doesn’t need to reflect on our News Feeds.

I understand that we have all rights entitled to us when it comes to expressing our own selves on Facebook or Twitter. We can do what we want and we can do it the way we want to. No one has the right to stop us, it’s our own account anyway. But I also came to realize that the status messages we put up or the things that we post reflect a lot on the kind of person we are and the kind of heart there is inside of us.

I used to be careless with my words and messages I post. When I’m sad or happy, I express it. When I’m embarrassed or frustrated, I express it. Impure or pure, I express it. When I don’t like something about a person and I can’t say it in front of his/her face, that box that allows me to type what’s on my mind becomes my best way to express it. Until someone has to correct me and made me realize what I’m doing isn’t nice to see. One of my life verses tells me to be “an example to the believers in SPEECH, in life, in love, in faith and in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12). Then I realize doing such thing doesn’t make me a good example AT ALL.

Since then, I became careful with what I say. I also realized who I am as a Christian. Are my words or my status messages something that breathe life or does it only bring hurt and distraction? I hope that we will choose to say something that breathes life.

In Matthew 12:34, it says “…For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.” If the words I say are like a peephole to my heart, will they see a good heart or a rotten one? I guess what we say also reflects how we guard our hearts. I hope we will watch out what we put in it and what comes out from it.

And before I hit that button, I ask myself, do this make me more Christ-like? Or is it just another ego talking?

And you know what, it’s not easy. Many times I find myself struggling. It’s never easy. But by God’s grace, we can do it. :)

“You have minds like a snake pit! How do you suppose what you say is worth anything when you are so foul-minded? It’s your heart, not the dictionary, that gives meaning to your words. A good person produces good deeds and words season after season. An evil person is a blight on the orchard. Let me tell you something: Every one of these careless words is going to come back to haunt you. There will be a time of Reckoning. Words are powerful; take them seriously. Words can be your salvation. Words can also be your damnation.” – Matthew 12:34-37 (The Message)

04.12.10 8:14pm

April 11, 2010 by by Fiona Mae Alvero

manila_trafficI love long land travels. For some reason, I find it serene.

The past few days, I’ve been trying to discover and study routes of trains and jeepneys. Being an intern doesn’t only mean getting familiar with workplace, but since I don’t have my own car yet, it also means being familiar on how to go to the workplace.

So recently, I learned to travel alone to Port Area, Manila from my house without having an aid of my best friend – the cab. I learned how to commute from my house to the office.

Another adventure has yet to unfold as I also need to be familiar on how to go to the different corners of Makati since I will be practically spending my whole summer there.

It’s not my first time to commute. A lot of times I have to learn how to go to one place to another without doing my cheat – sliding in on another cab ride. Metro Manila is such a big place and I don’t want to limit my knowledge about commuting with just the Ikot Jeep or the LRT Line 2. Besides, my mom loves to ask me to run errands for her that would entail MRT rides and different jeepney routes.

I remember when I was just new here in Metro Manila, my older cousin made sure that I know how to commute from my dorm to immediate places – school, church, her house and her clinic. Later on she also taught me how to go to the less important places like malls and relatives’ houses. Her concern was for me to know how to commute and not get lost. But I remember her telling me that sometimes it’s okay to get lost or make mistakes with the rides that I will take. It’s okay if you find yourself in an unknown place because it becomes an avenue for you to explore and learn more.

After just being taught by my cousin about the things I shouldn’t forget when riding the LRT, my first attempt to ride it alone was unsuccessful. I carelessly climbed the stairs that led me to the wrong LRT ride. Instead of riding the train with the route going home, I rode the other one that made me end up in a station that I’ve never been before. My cousin didn’t miss out on telling me that LRT has two ends, I just didn’t take enough care to notice.

But since the moment I got lost, I never ever again forget that LRT has two ends, and climbing the left stairs will bring me to an entirely different place from climbing the right one. I learned. Not only had I learned, I had the chance to discover the other station.

Sometimes in life we are so afraid of making mistakes or getting lost along the way. But when it’s there in front of us, the thing is, we can’t undo it anymore. All we can do is face it and make up for that mistake, find the way out and learn from it. There are lessons in life that we will never learn if we didn’t get lost. There are things in life that we will not care to give so much importance if we didn’t find ourselves in a wrong place. Apparently, sometimes we learn things the hard way, but these lessons are the ones we will never forget because it brought us to the right direction.

When I find myself lost in the middle of Makati or if I ride the wrong jeepney in Manila, even if it is embarrassing and uncomfortable, at the end of the day, at least I know I learned. And unintentional it may be, but I also get to discover yet another route that may be helpful for me in the future. Maybe we will never get rid of getting lost or making mistakes no matter how hard we try, but frustrating it may always be, I believe there’s also something good that comes out of it.

And maybe my cousin is right. It’s okay to make mistakes. It’s okay if you get lost. It wouldn’t make us less of a person.

04.11.10 9:59pm

 

April 1, 2010 by by Fiona Mae Alvero

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I was left alone in our house that evening when I realize I wasn’t really alone. I don’t know how but a strange guy showed up in our living area, staring at me as if he wants to eat me. He came close and instructed me to calm down and shut my mouth or else I’ll be dead. So I did.

With my heart pounding really fast, I tried my best to stay calm and say no word while I watch him move his way to my parents’ bedroom where he ransacked every cabinet and drawers he saw.

He’s a robber. I thought he’s also dumb for letting me sit alone freely. Even with my knees shaking, I got the guts to stand up and move to our kitchen some steps away from the living room because I know there’s an exit there. But he was not a dumb as I thought he was. He stopped searching for possessions and immediately followed me but I managed to quickly exit our house and out of our gate. And when I was ready to run to our neighbor’s house to ask for help, he had the chance to grab me. There was no screaming. Not even a single sound because I was too scared I could not anymore open my mouth. There were no words, no sounds coming out even if how hard I try.

Near our house is a billiard court where people stay up late. What was on my mind that time when he grabbed my hand was to try to escape and run to that place. So with all my might, I tried to hurt him so bad so that he could let me go. The moment he lost grip, I ran the fastest that I can. I was already near the billiard court when my uncle saw me and asked me why I’m out running. Sweat dripping down my face. But my vocal cords were as if locked. I was too nervous I couldn’t anymore speak or even make a sound. Before I could manage to open my mouth and say a word, the crazy guy came close and held me as if we know each other, and that he cares. I wanted to tell my uncle that I don’t know the guy and he’s up for something bad but my mouth was numb.

Then at the back of my uncle I saw another guy with a big tummy approaching us. As he came closer, I recognized who he was and this time, even if in my mind I know that the crazy guy could kill me when I scream or say a word, I did not care at all. When I saw that big tummy guy, I burst in tears. I was able to scream really loud as I run to him and hug him. It was my dad. And the moment that I recognized it was him, even if in the midst of all the horror I feel and the life and death situation, I felt safe because I know when I’m with my dad, everything will be alright.

Then I woke up.

I woke up with real tears in my eyes. It was a dream. Breathe. I sat down and cried some more. It was a bad dream but what made me cry even more was how my dad showed up to rescue me and ended my bad dream with so much peace, love and security.

That moment I sat down, I loved my dad even more. He’s that very guy in my dream who brings security in my heart. He’s there to protect our family. He always tries his best to keep us safe. He would fight for our family no matter what. When we were kids, he would kiss our wounds when it hurt us. When we became teenagers, he swore to mom that he’ll punch faces of guys who will try to break her daughters’ hearts and make them cry (so guys, beware). He’s my man.

He’s human like you and me yet he’s ready to do anything to protect us and make us feel secure. I realize how much more our Father in heaven wants to do the same for us, how He loves to kiss our skinned knees or mend our broken hearts.

I know that no matter how hard my dad would try, he can’t always be around to protect us. Some of us grew up without experiencing how it’s like to have a dad. But I know even if in the absence of our biological fathers, we can still experience the love and security of having a dad because we have our Father in Heaven. In 2 Corinthians 6:18, it says, “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”

In my dream, when I saw my dad, I knew that things will be alright because I know my dad. I know him personally. He loves me and protects me. Same goes true with our Dad in Heaven, if we know Him as a Dad who loves us, even in the scariest moments of our lives, we will feel alright because we know He’s there to protect and rescue us.

He is our Dad. And with Him, everyone could experience how it’s like to have a Dad who loves, who protects, who gives security and peace in our hearts, who gives us identity, who holds our hands, who carries us on His shoulders, who helps us to stand again when we fall, who shows up when a crazy guy scares us to death.

And He is that Dad who, when life gets too scary and terrifying, would hug us and say “Don’t worry my child, everything’s going to be fine.” And you would feel safe and alright.

04.01.10 10:16pm

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