This year was special like every year. It has been an amazing year of God’s presence. Here are my Top 10 things to thank God for in 2012:
1. Thirty years of marriage to Marie. Still wake up mornings thinking what a blessing it is to be loved by this awesome woman despite all that she knows about me. Despite all the bumps, slips, falls and mistakes we’ve made together – I have to say, I married the right girl. And thankfully she still loves me.
2. Marie’s reinvention. Watching her transition from a full time wife, mother and homemaker to reinventing the new Marie has been a process of years as the boys turned into men and leave the nest. This year things have become clearer for her. Apart from the marriage seminars we have done together, her mentoring of both younger and older women, being the catalyst of joy for our family; she has become an accomplished artist (sold more paintings this year including 2 to boxing champion Manny Pacquaio), she continues to Zumba and has been my traveling companion to China, Hong Kong, South Africa, Dubai and the US.
3. Joseph and Carla’s marriage. I have always wondered what having a daughter in law is like. God must like me a lot. First He gave us a first born who is impeccably honoring, wise and loving. Then he gave him a wife who is smart (just graduated with honors this year), talented and hardworking still does some acting, hosting and has a column in the Manila Bulletin. Most all she loves the Lord and His Church. Carla mentors other women and travels with Joe to meet with campus missionaries, do weddings all while they enjoy an outdoor fun life. Watching these two grow together is a treat.
4. David ‘s journey with God. In December 2011 I gave David Tim Keller’s book King’s Cross for Christmas. What ensued was something I could not have imagined but can only be amazed at. He read Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology (a fat book that I’m still trying to finish) when his staple reads are about business, arts, novels and life. More importantly it has translated into a life that passionately loves God and others. His last post this year explains it all, it is rich and inspiring – Lessons on Life, Loss and Love – I couldn’t help but be amazed after I read it all. I also thank God for allowing David to navigate all his business concerns and be able to move forward with his business career with his new job offer. God is indeed faithful.
5. Joshua’s engagement to Kristie his long time girlfriend. I can still remember the first time she walked into our life when Joshua brought her to our home, I thought what a cute girl. For some time now Marie and I have come to the conclusion that God had prepared this girl for our son. The question that remained was when Joshua would be ready to tie the knot. Joshua did his proposal in a way that could only make a father proud. He planned it in such a way that it would bring Kristie the greatest joy not for the gimmickry but by carefully incorporating what he knew was most important to both of them – her family and ours, and God. It was simply amazing.
6. Our decision to move Papa and Mommy to our home. A few weeks ago Marie and I felt we needed to move my parents into our house. I must admit this is a daunting decision as the responsibility is huge. In the same breath we are excited at what God is about to do. Three thoughts come to mind as we have made this decision: First: “Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God.” Luke 5:25 – My parents in their old age will be praising God as they prepare to go home. Our family and friends who will witness this will be praise God as they are amazed. ”He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God,a saying, “We have never seen anything like this!” Mark 2:12 And finally, one thing is for sure we will live long in the land and all will go well with us as we honor our father and mother.
7. “The LEGO Principle” is published in United States. Proof that God is in the business of miracles. Despite having a fulltime day job I was able to write the manuscript. He opened the door that allowed me to get a major U.S. publisher in the U.S. in spite of my being an unknown Filipino author. He provided top notch endorsers from all over the world who willingly read the manuscript and gave their support. Finally He orchestrated an amazing book launch in the U.S. that included two magazine features, a TV interview and an opportunity to present the book at one of the largest churches in the U.S. On top of all that we were also able to do a book launch in the Philippines with minimal expense. Here is the summary video of the U.S. launch.
8. Victory completed organizational transition. Am so thankful to God to have been able to see Victory’s completed transition into a lean, effective and efficient organization despite its age and size. Paolo Punzalan who has taken the day to day operations of Victory Fort to whole ‘nother level, Ferdie Cabiling who has taken over the role as the oversight for Metro-Manila, as the hubs of Metro-Manila are formed and the over-all structure takes shape. God is amazing and to Him be all the glory!
9. My role as Asian Director for Every Nation. God used our team in Manila to help bring stability to the Asian region, we saw the Indonesian churches be restored to health and were able to help strategize the churches in Guam and in Japan.
10. My new role as Chairman of the Real Life Foundation. Very excited about this new assignment. Can’t wait to dive into this.
Thank You Lord for a great year. Looking forward to a productive, fruitful and enjoyable 2013. To You be all the glory!