It is never enough to hold our tongues


As I read “Wisdom and Declarations” written by my good friend Caleb Galaraga, it reminded me of the good people who have encouraged me & spoke powerful declarations in my life that helped me become a better person. However, it also reminded me of the devastating words said to me that had a negative impact in my life as well as the things that I’ve said that brought more damage than encouragement. The bible says that the tongue has the power of life and death. In his book, Caleb encourages us to live a life committed to choose to speak life. It means speaking words that build people up, intentionally encouraging others, and choosing your words wisely, no matter what situation or circumstance we are in.

I remember those times when I was sleepless, pressured, and frustrated while running the university week activities with the student council officers and volunteers. At the main hall, I vented my anger on someone in public with a scandalous yelling and reprimand.  That forever changed my relationship with a fellow student and officer at the student council. A great wall was created in defense to me. I have repented and apologized so many times, I tried to restore the friendship and working relationship that affected me and the entire student organization I was in. There was no excuse for my behavior. What has been said cannot be taken back.

 
About a year ago, my friends and I attended a wedding. One of my friends who went to that event at that time was an atheist. There was a time in the event wherein we had the opportunity to hang out with a pastor along with his wife, during the hangout conversation, the hurting experiences he had in the past from church leaders resurfaced. It was a powerful moment when the pastor listened to him and sincerely apologized in behalf of the leaders. We all felt that forgiveness has been release, healing and restoration took place. After that I have never heard him utter words of hate or anger towards the church.( as far as I know)  Our ability to humbly ask for forgiveness brings people whom we have hurt to the healing and restoration process.

To most of us who have uttered damaging and not so encouraging words, when we learn our mistakes, it is never enough to hold our tongues and say we will never do it again. I like what Caleb said in his e-book, “choose to commit to a life that speaks life, regardless who we speak to, regardless of their past and their mistakes, regardless of circumstances and situations”. The words we speak brings good or bad results.

 
I highly recommend the e-book to everyone and also for group study and discussions. Caleb’s e-book “Wisdom and Declaration” is free for download, click the link below and it will direct you to the download site.

Click here : http://calebgalaraga.com/book/

 

 

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 How to Raise Funds for a Summer Youth Camp

Summer youth camps are just around the corner! For instance, Every Nation Campus Ortigas will be holding its Beyond Youth Camp on May 24-26,2016 at CCT Tagaytay.

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Youth camps can be pricey though.  How can a student like you raise funds? I listed a few suggestions below.

1. Pray & Save 

Yes! Pray first, remembering to ask God for provision and wisdom in doing the fund raising. Take hold  of God’s promise by having your fund raising bible verse.

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Save money, and set aside from your allowance. You may need to make some sacrifices maybe by skipping  a few Starbucks drinks, KFC meals, or movie tickets. Keep in heart that the youth camp is all worth the self investment. Keep the exciting vision of meeting new friends, having fun, having a great experience, and the life changing lessons to be learned.

 

 

2. Make a list of people

kid-making-listIf you are raising Php 3,500, try to list down 35 people who can donate  Php 100 each or 70 people that can give you Php 50 or maybe 7 people who can give you Php 500 each.

Start the list with your family members, relatives, neighbors, and friends. Raise more than enough, so you can also bless others!

 

 

3. Ask for referrals 

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Approach the people in your list, after asking them if they can donate. Ask them if they can refer you to others who can help you. Ask for the names of at least 3-5 people. Remember to politely request if they can inform these people in advance before you contact them within the next 3 days! Yes, make sure you do the follow up too! Don’t forget to thank them.

 

 

4. Sell

 

UE students doing a garage sale for Leaders’ Camp 2016 U-belt

Fundraise through selling. You can do this individually or as a team. Show off  your baking skills like making cupcakes, cookies, graham balls, or pastillas. You can also make T-shirts or pens. Gather your slightly used fashionable clothes and accessories for a garage sale.  Make sure to personalize your product by putting your name or the title of the youth camp event. Don’t just sell the product, sell the vision that you and your friends will be in the youth camp! They are investing in the next generation leaders every time they are buying your product.

 

Make sure to mark up your price, for example if you make a T-shirt that costs you Php 100, sell it for Php 200 or more. Remember to sell the vision and that their support will go a long way.

 

5. Service through chores or job

Ask your parents, relatives, neighbors, churchmates, or friends if there are chores or job you can do in exchange for a donation.

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I will never forget a great friend who offered car washing services a few years back just to be able to attend the camp. Then there were the students who help me cleaned the apartment in exchange for their registration for Victory Weekend. To what great heights are you willing to raise funds?

 

6. Organize concerts

If you and your friends or schoolmates have all the time, all energy, and resources to pull this off, why not? Be mindful that this needs a lot of preparation and consideration. This is great if you are raising funds for more students in your campus or community to attend. This is the least of all I recommend.

 

7. Utilize use social media

Make use of Facebook, and let the world know that you are fundraising. Tell them that they can help you by donating or buying your product.

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8. Set target goals

Set a target goal amount to raise up every week. If you have 7 more weeks left, write a specific amount you need to raise. Be in faith to reach that amount and that you’ll be able to complete it before the deadline.

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I’m excited for you as you raise funds and encounter God’s faithfulness. Have fun and  always be in faith and in prayer for God’s provision. God is more than able to bless you more abundantly than what you can ask or imagine. Remember to honor Him and worship Him as well as you give your tithe, remembering that it is God who gives you this provision.

Social Media | Optimizing influence 

Life is precious that in our lifetime, we are gifted with influence and one of the avenues of our influence is on social media. In social media alone, over 32% of the total Philippine population in 2015 are involved and most of them are on Facebook.


With that in mind, whatever we communicate in our social media platforms (Facebook, tweeter, Instagram and etc.) brings a certain degree of influence and bearing. Come to think of it, How are we going to effectively use our social media platforms? How are we going to make a difference through these things ? Here are some principles we can consider in making greater impact in your social media sites:

1. Identify your values

What we post intentionally or unintentionally may communicate or miscommunicate what you value. Identifying what we value helps us have a clear judgement on what we consistently pound to the public.

Let the people know what is valuable, so innate in you and close to your heart and share them to the world.

2. Personal Mission Statement 

Once you have identified your core values, now, comes your sense of purpose that enables you to a have missional life, so what’s your personal mission statement? If you haven’t have one, now is the best time to reflect, whether it may be for this season or longterm.

Be missional and be intentional, whether it may be inspiring others through photos and encouraging and uplifting others through words. What’s your advocacy? Where do you think God is placing your purpose in the puzzle of a global picture?

3. Communicate consistently what you value. 

There is power in consistency, If you’re a person who aspires to bring encouragement to people through social media or whatever endeavor it may be, then, consistently communicates it. Over-communicating the same message in different ways enables readers and followers to actually grasp deeply what you want to say. Make it to a point that they would eagerly look forward for your next post.

4. Filter what you post.

Embracing what you value will be your ultimate guide in filtering your messages. Filtering is necessary to check whether what we are about to communicate is align to our values.

I had my share of irresponsible postings that completely miscommunicated in million ways just by a single picture or a sentence.

In my journey towards living a life with purpose, and reaching the next generation. God showed me that I am a steward of my social media influence as well. To bring the same message of Hope that He gives me, share his faithfulness and plant the seed of his power through the readers and social media followers.

Honoring Leaders | Lynn Nawata

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Today, I want to honor and give thanks to one of the people who made an impact to my life and perhaps, to many more, Ms. Lynn Nawata. She served as the Real Life Foundation Director for the past 8 years. REAL LIFE FOUNDATION is a scholarship program that helps the deserving underprivileged youth to finish college degree for a better future.

As she journeys to the next season of her career, it brings both sadness and joy. But joyful for her as she continues to faithfully serve God to where she is called.

Ms. Lyn, your compassion for helping the poor is so contagious. Everytime we would hear you speak about helping others, it never fails to move people for it has always come to us in a voice of a woman filled with so much passion.

Ms. Lyn, one of the things I will never forget is the line “What is your sobrang happy thought?” Thank you for the #SobrangHappyThoughts. This line always reminds me to recall God’s goodness and faithfulness in my life. When things are rough and difficult, recalling this line puts me back to a heart of gratitude and makes me appreciate every small detail of God’s loving grace , provision and gift of life.

I like what Pastor Steve Murell said during the Metro Manila Staff Meeting that for most of the Real Life scholars and for us alumni you are a “Nanay” (mom). Thank you for the impact you made into the lives of many.

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You bring sobrang happy thoughts into our hearts and we are excited as you bring crossroads to more people across Asia and the world. As you have touched our hearts, surely, you will touch thousands more around the globe.