By Estrella (Star) del Mar

00000000r In November 8, 2013, super typhoon Yolanda hit the Visayan Islands and made serious damages/losses on lives and properties.  The media were not lacking in giving warnings to people according to the weather forecasts.  But the government and the people were not well prepared for it.  Some did not believe that it would be strong enough to cause much destruction since they were used to typhoons in the past and the weather, before it struck, seemed to be just fine. The results are now part of history to learn from.  Regrets often come last.  We could not undo what has been done.

            This time, we have another super typhoon Ruby which hits the same areas and more, affected by Typhoon Yolanda. This time, the government and the people were better prepared to meet “Ruby”.  This time, the people could not allow themselves to be complacent for destruction was sure to come.  We cannot control it but simply get away from its destructive path.  And we prayed for God’s intervention – to spare His people from destruction.  We prayed for deliverance.  We prayed for salvation from these calamities.

0000Advent CandlesIt is the season of Advent at this time.  Advent is a time of waiting, of expectation and hope.  It is a time for preparation for the Messiah’s coming on Christmas day and to remind us of Jesus’ second coming which is still to come.  “Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths!” says John the Baptist.

            What preparations have we made?  What paths in our lives that need to be straightened? Are we ready to meet the Lord?

            The Lord had sent Prophets who were better than our Weather Forecasters.  But people did not listen.  History had shown us what happened to the people who did not listen but we remain to be complacent.

This time, many prepared food, water, warm clothes and safe shelters to be saved from the destruction of typhoon Ruby. All these are necessary for survival in our earthly life and we should prepare all these.  However, “Ruby” did not come on the day as expected.  Thank God for the delay of typhoon Ruby so people can better prepare. Thank God that “Ruby” had weakened. Thank God that it did not cause much damage like “Yolanda” did.

            What about Jesus’ coming? What about our time of meeting the Lord?  We thank God that this is delayed because we still want to enjoy this world with all that it offers.  We want to prevent sickness and slow down the ageing process.  We want to combat sickness with various drugs and modern technology.  Most people want to live long and stay long in this world.  And people forget that we are only temporary dwellers in this world.  People work hard (in good or bad ways) to live in comfort and enjoy life. Some people steal or kill to gain wealth fast and hold power. Many are still suffering from poverty, injustice, sickness and loneliness.

000000No matter what the situation is, we, Filipinos like to celebrate.  We celebrate Christmas.  Family is the focus of our celebration.  We also celebrate with friends and extended families. We prepare gifts, big or small, it’s the thought that counts.  We like to make others happy.  There’s joy in sharing a meal together and sharing gifts.  But there’s greater joy, much love and inner peace when everyone is reconciled with one another.

Let’s include in our preparation, asking forgiveness for our sins of commission & omission and forgiving others; share appreciation & affirmation, not only wrapped gifts; give sincere love not only presence; and show compassion to those who need understanding.



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