Dear, 23 year-old Mae

Crazy how the years go by, We’re approaching our mid 20’s and it almost always feels like a battle against time.

I did not expect you to be this good.

You have brought me into the blues and the greens, the seas and the mountains, you allowed multiple ways to ‘detach’ and seek comfort in the beauty of travels and adventures.

You pushed me out of my comfort zone to travel alone. I had my first time experiences. Dined with people I just met on the same day. Boarding a plane all by myself. I conquered them because you have believed in me.

You inspired me to chase waterfalls, many of them. You pushed me to not settle and to continue exploring.

You taught my heart to love beyond what my eyes can see. Thanks for all the people who demonstrated your love and care for me.

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Also, I did not expect you to be this worst.

So many sleepless nights and so many tears shed, broken relationships, unfulfilled promises, trust given were crushed. I have faced my greatest fear: Molar tooth extraction! Many circumstances weren’t ideal.

But after dark nights always come sunrises. This year was the best year ever, from the lowest point of my life, Jesus revealed himself to me. I woke up one morning and something has changed. The part of me that I am holding on for so long has ended. I have received the grace of Jesus, and I can never be the same.

“I have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life which I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” –Galatians 2:20

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Knowing Christ made me realize that there’s more to life. Yes! There are so much more.

No shame. No doubt. It is written in the hands of my creator. And even if I have a tendency to battle against time and the inevitable truth of aging and even if my time has passed, the works of God never fades. His beauty remains forever.

Dear Jesus Christ,

You told me that I am created for a purpose far greater than any dream I have for myself. Thank You for the privilege to be part of your ministry for the kids through Shine Batang Paoo and QC Kids Vacation Bible School.

You instructed me to listen only to the words that directly comes from You. Thank you for my Dgroup and other fellowships in Christ who became a constant reminder of Your love and care.

You told me to be grateful of all things and to appreciate my family, friends and my career. It takes time to build a relationship, a career and even a good habit. I have tried to speed the process, I become frustrated, worse, I have built something that is less than what I had hoped for. Now, I realize that I cannot and should not hurry the important things. I want whatever I build to be sturdy and long-lasting.

You teach me not only to be brave but also to be gentle. Be brave not in a way of fighting and saying strong words but to fight for the things with eternal value. Fight the good fight.

You told me to be patient, and not to give up when things aren’t favorable. You reminded me that God’s plan should stand still even if things are shaky. You pruned me to become someone who doesn’t just have faith to believe but also have faith to claim.

You teach me how to truly love, care and pray radically. Pray for those who hurt me; Do good for those who have wronged me; Forgive those who slander me; Care for those who offend me; Love those who hate me.

You have given me the greatest lessons I can possibly receive:

Blessing comes from obedience and waiting.

When you ask me to wait, it means that you want me to seek who God is and enjoy His presence not the things he can give or do.

When you ask me to obey, it means that you want me to redirect my own will towards God’s pleasing and perfect plan.

Good bye 23 year-old Mae, hello 24.

Many things and even people didn’t make it on my 24th. Part of pursuing the best for our lives is to acknowledge that some have to be left behind.

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I am a sinner and I will never qualify for anything good. Yet God’s love and righteousness, took my place and bear the shame. So I will stand firm in my faith, upholding only what God has called me to do — not because of anything I have done but because of His own purpose and grace.

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