The last Pursuit Manila Gathering for the year was held over the weekend at the Knightsbridge Residences in Makati. And of course everyone was excited: taking photos, chatting, laughing and taking more photos. To be in a room filled with young(er) women who have their own businesses, who are professionals, artists and creatives was so inspiring. I secretly wished there was something of this kind (gathering) when I was in my late 20’s or 30’s… giving away my age there!
The Thanksgiving theme was timely because Thanksgiving will be celebrated by my family in the US in a couple of weeks. As 2015 comes to a close, it is fitting to look back and celebrate the year with a grateful heart.
Carla “Rica” Peralejo-Bonifacio’s talk on having an attitude of gratitude is a preview of what she will be sharing on her blog this month. I wanted to hear more but I will just head on to her blog and follow her series this month. We were encouraged by her message that prompted all of us to enumerate ten things we are grateful for 2015. After completing our list, we were to share them with our seatmates. Because we were laughing and eating at the same time, I was not able to share my list with the girls (Lorby, Madel, Denise and Peachy).
So, I’m sharing with you my Gratitude List of 2015.
- Pursuit Manila. Reading about this group early this year from Rhiza thrilled me. As a follower of Christ, I also want to be connected to other women outside my home church and Pursuit Manila allowed me just that. Though I’m not an artist, photographer nor a Christian creative, I bravely joined my first gathering in February. I was in a room full of women whose hearts and faces were made beautiful because of their passion for their craft/work and their passion for Christ. It was God’s opportune time for me to know these women.
- New connections. Pursuit Manila also has brought in new friends who seemed like long-lost friends. The connection is real because of the same spirit to that fills each Pursuit sister. This year was also a time to reconnect with former classmates and batch mates and refresh old friendships. Renewed ties made our high school’s 25th Alumni Homecoming a success.
- Opportunities. Because of new connections, our home business has gained new clients. With God’s help and support of friends, we were able to complete orders that were way beyond our capacity. It was an honor also to help support a movement called The Whole Mom which was initiated by three inspiring young Moms, Carla, Marilen and Cheska.
- New learning. I was able to read more books this year. Those books created a new perspective in life and influenced me to work on my relationship with God and with others. I also tried my hand on brush calligraphy and I accept that I have a looong way to go. This was also the year my husband and I completed three years of the leadership course in church. Thank you God! Now, we are passing on what we learned to our own discipleship group.
- Discipline. My word for the year has in fact, pushed me to be just that, DISCIPLINED! First, the discipline in writing consistently on the blog. By God’s grace and enabling, I was able to start my first blog series called Minute Mondays. This really took a LOT of dedication and commitment because I had to ask God as source for this: seek His word, read, study, meditate and write. As a result, I perceive changes happening in the blog in the near future. This also changed the way I see the future of Inspirited Mom. So watch out for changes on the blog. Second, the discipline to prioritize intimacy with the Lord each day. The discipline to put him first above and before all. That prayer time be the center of my day and not the other way around. Intimacy begets love begets obedience.
- Challenges. There were rough days and weeks. There were times I wanted to throw in the towel and give it all up. But His words would remind me that He works all things according to His purpose and not mine and that all will work together for my good in the end. Those challenges compelled me to seek wisdom so I can do better and find comfort that everything is according to his perfect will.
- Changes. There has been a lot of changes in our family life this year. From our eldest moving out of homeschool to my husband’s work schedule. These allowed me to let go and trust God for the outcome. The changes propelled me to look forward to the future and plan my days. My husband and I are more exhausted because of it but it’s a good kind of tiredness. Ooh and one change that I really love is having my desk (my small office). It was supposed to make me more organized but then… nevermind!
- Discipleship groups. I am always grateful for them. An accountability group where I can be free to share personal struggles without being judged. A group where I get to gently rebuke an erring brother or sister or be rebuked also. A group that encourages me to draw near to God by studying, meditating and applying His Word. Imagine spending time with my heavenly family while still here on Earth? Awesome!
- Freedom to study God’s word. Hearing stories of Christians being beheaded or imprisoned because of their faith is heartbreaking. But it also makes me want to thank God that I live in a country where carrying, studying and sharing the Bible is not prohibited. I have the freedom to share to others what the Bible says. Though, I had my share of insults and judgement, been called a lot of names, eluded and ignored because I am a BORN-AGAIN Christian. I have resolved not to pick a fight (even if I want to) because God will not be pleased if I succumb to foolish arguments. I just keep in that God wins, He always does! 10. God. Numbers 1 to 9 were all part of God’s amazing plan for me this year. He allowed me to reap the consequences of the good and bad choices I made. He was with me through it all. He gave me supernatural strength when my physical body needed a little more push. He supplied me with wisdom when I had to make choices. He said NO when the things I wanted were not good for me. He said WAIT when He knows I am not ready to receive what I was asking for. He said YES when there is nothing stopping Him from blessing me in that particular time.
As the Pursuit Manila gathering closes for the year, Rhiza and the rest of the sisters are looking forward to seeing the fruits of our labor this year. I also look forward to more collaborations and more opportunities to share God’s love, Likewise, a more discerning mind to pursue Godly goals, humble obedience to go where God leads and more love shown to God and to others.
How about you? Make a list of the Top 10 things you are grateful for this year and share it with me too, will you?