Bible Everyday, Daily Inspiration, Hope for You, Marriage Matters, Matters of the Heart, Mommy Diaries, You are Loved

Love? What is it?

It’s the last day of the month that we all popularly call the #lovemonth so I thought it worthwhile to write about something that everyone is so hooked on – LOVE. So, LOVE? What is it really?

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LOVE? What is It?

Being in the social media era, I curiously searched what Google has to say, and here are the first few searches from the thousands that came up:

From Wikipedia:

“Love is a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that ranges from interpersonal affection to pleasure. It can refer to an emotion of a strong attraction and personal attachment.”

From Psychology Today:

“Love is one of the most profound emotions known to human beings. There are many kinds of love, but most people seek its expression in a romantic relationship with a compatible partner. For some, romantic relationships are the most meaningful element in their lives, providing a source of deep fulfillment.”

From Merriam Webster:

“(1): strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties (maternal love for a child) (2):  attraction based on sexual desire (3): affection and tenderness felt by lovers (After all these years, they are still very much in love.) (4): affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests (love for his old schoolmates) (6): an assurance of affection (give her my love).”

Having listed those definitions above and if you ask me, my personal definition of love is this:

“LOVE is something that is too great, too deep and too beautiful too be fully understood. Love is not for the weak of heart, but for the strong. Love is for those who are willing to discover it’s many expressions until they reach the highest extent that any individual can fully give or receive within his or her lifetime. Love cannot be humanly speaking, fully comprehensible…” Irmz

Why did I say that? Isn’t LOVE the reason why some men in their limited capacity to understand it are driven to addiction or obsession? Men and women alike long for this feeling to satisfy their emotions – their souls; that in some instances forces them to commit unlawful, criminal and illicit acts just to satisfy it. All because, they lived to believe that love is something to be received – something to be taken from others.

In conclusion, and to bring some light to this profound thing called love, let us ask the One who authored it, after all GOD is LOVE. 1 John 4:8

What is Love?

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What is LOVE?

“If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

1 Corinthians 13 New International Version

So there you have it, the definition of LOVE in it’s highest form. May I also add and put emphasis on it that we can only draw this kind of love from God. Nowhere in this world can we search for it, and no one person – let me repeat that again – NO ONE PERSON has the capacity to give it all to us, but only a weak expression of it in part; and only if that person has also received the same from none other than JESUS.

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Basal Metabolic Rate, Calorie Counter, Healthy Living, Hope for You, Successful Living, You are Loved

We’ve Got a Makeover!

Last month marked the first year when I started blogging on this site. I remember my first post – it was in a depressing tone as it featured the passing of one of the most bubbly personalities in Hollywood, Robin Williams. It was so relevant at that time as I remembered some people who were in challenging situations in life.

This year, however, I decided to do a complete makeover as suggested by my son, Josh. We started to work on the theme to set aside the gloom of last year and to welcome the new season of life and new beginnings. From the very dense logo and “hospital-ish” feel of the website, Josh decided to do a little bit of experiment with the theme and it’s colors.

He suggested that it should be simple yet stylish, so we played with only three colors: green, blue and red. Green speaks of life, harmony, healing and safety. Blue, on the other hand, talks about clarity, wisdom, tranquility and stability. To strike a balance and a contrast with the other two colors, we used red to display energy, leadership, passion and love.

Also, and surprisingly, the past year has earned us an audience from different parts of the globe from Japan, India, Macau, South Korea, United States, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Canada, Australia and more. Reason why we decided to put the world map as it’s base.

After several weeks of brainstorming, here now is the finished product!

Hopefully, I would be able to reach more people to help transform their lifestyles in the coming years. So as an added treat, I am giving you a free “Health Assessment Test” for you to know where you are in your health condition and what can be done to meet your wellness needs. Answer the question: Are You as Healthy as You feel?

A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body. Proverbs 14:30 (NLT)

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Healthy Eating Plate, Healthy Eating Pyramid, Healthy Living, MyPlate

My Journey Towards Health

My journey with Nutritional Supplements is one for the books, because I was the number one skeptic about it. It’s very unlikely for a nurse like me, but yes, I was a non-believer of this stuff. To me, they were all synthetic and toxic to the liver and kidneys!

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I was a Non-Believer of Supplements

Herbal supplements, on the other hand, had no benefit whatsoever; because our gastric juices simply destroy them once it reaches the gut. At least, that was what an eBook about Antioxidants I worked on for a client said.

I was a believer that a healthy lifestyle was enough: healthy diet (My Healthy Eating Plate), regular exercise, enough sleep, minimized stress and continuous hydration were all that was needed. I was not just a believer, but a serious advocate who did all these at the beginning of the year. Until – I was pinned down for more than 3 weeks because of Dengue and Enteric Fever; that was only after 2 months of strict healthy diet and high impact exercises.

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Although my Healthy Lifestyle was not in any way the culprit for my hospital admission, I thought it too be so ironic that I would be confined after almost 18 years. The last one, by the way, was when I gave birth to my son – I was not even ill at that time. This event was to be the lowest point in my life: physically, emotionally, mentally, financially and spiritually.

Until, a very good friend thoughtfully gave me some tablets to take while I was on recovery. She gave me a 10-day dose of the Usana Supplements. Skeptic as I was, I told myself there was no effect whatsoever. On the sixth day, I deliberately decided to stop the supplements to observe whether there would be any changes. Then lo and behold, my vertigo and palpitations showed up, so I told myself it must really work!

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I took Essentials and Proflavanol C for 10 days.

After that, I did a personal research on Usana and all its products; I even went as far as doing the apple test myself, even though, there were a lot of videos available on YouTube. After I gathered enough information, I thought to myself, Cellular Nutrition is really impressive and is a necessity; something that most people take for granted these days. So from that day forward, I never stopped sharing Usana to everyone I know.

Media Credits:
No Drugs Poster: http://www.usalaborlawposters.com/product/drugs-workplace-poster/
Thinking Woman: http://www.freepik.com/free-photo/thinking_20689.htm
Healthy Lifestyle: http://steppingforwardintofreedom.com/?page_id=409

Find out more about your own journey towards health here, where this article was also posted: https://irmz.usana.com

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Bible Everyday, Cardiovascular System, Circulatory System, Daily Inspiration, Digestive System, Infectious Diseases, Matters of the Heart, You are Loved

I Am Back!

Praise God I am back!

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The last two weeks had been a very challenging time for me and my family. I was discharged from the hospital last Sunday, March 1 due to dengue and enteric fever. Who would have thought I would have 2 diseases at the same time? After discharge, I was advised to take at least 7-10 days of rest, and I took it very seriously. I spent the whole of last week sleeping, eating and relaxing. I needed to do that so I can completely recover. I finished the last dose of my medication on Tuesday, March 3 and was out to meet with some dear friends yesterday. I am definitely back!

This experience was like a horrible nightmare for me because I never thought I’d fill in the shoes of a patient. I am so used to being the nurse telling my patients, “sorry this is gonna hurt a bit” or that “ma’am its important do this for your health”. Now I am on the receiving end, and the worst part was, to be woken up almost every 2 hours because of my vital signs, medications or blood extractions!

Despite all the troubles though, this past 2 weeks was also a time for many realizations. It made me see that there is so much to be thankful for: my dad and mom, brothers Ronald and Ruel and their wives who ask for updates at every chance they get, my sister Ingrid and her husband Mon who traveled a long way just to check on me, my in-laws: mother in law, brother in law (Rey) and especially my sister in law, Marissa and her husband Kuya Ariel who arranged everything from the time of my admission until I was discharged from the hospital, and my Victory Greenhills family who never stopped covering me in prayers during my ordeal. I truly thank my God for all of you!

Most of all, I would like to honor my husband for all the love, care and nurturing he lavished me with, in spite of the sleepless nights, painful back and legs and his own health failing. I love you even more; you are God’s hands here on earth for me.

And, to the One who is my strong tower, whom I owe everything and who has kept me safe – I will praise you in whatever circumstances! You deserve the glory not because You answered our prayers, but because You are You.

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For you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Psalm 61:3

Let me tell you about my lowest and weakest moment on the second night at the hospital when I felt a strong sense of desperation. It was after my platelet dived at 41 at 4PM on the first day then soared high at 190 at 7AM the following day. I was so ecstatic and overjoyed because of the sudden shoot up of my platelet, but only to be utterly disappointed because at 3PM it dived again at 83. I was out of reason because my medical knowledge of the disease was that once the platelet recovers, it will continue to rise until it reaches its normal level. The doctor was also doubtful so she ordered a screening test and that was when we found out that I not only have dengue but I also tested positive for enteric fever. Dengue is a viral infection while enteric fever is bacterial. I felt like the whole world just crumbled. I felt a sense of dread because both illnesses can cause bleeding, and with my state, I knew it can happen anytime. That night I pleaded with God and asked so many people to pray for me. His Word kept me company and gave me the spark of hope I needed. I am so glad I memorized this chapter and have kept it locked inside my heart. It lulled me to sleep as I recited His word over and over in my head…

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A psalm of David:
The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides me in the path of righteousness for His Name’s sake. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely Your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. (‭Psalm‬ ‭23‬:‭1-6‬ NIV)

Bible Everyday, Daily Inspiration, Hope for You, Marriage Matters, Matters of the Heart, Successful Living, You are Loved

My Kind of Guy

Are you looking for love? I am sure that just like me you have been betrayed, taken for granted or have been broken to pieces when the person you loved the most failed you.

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Me Thinking

In this season, a lot of people are desperate for love, and sometimes do foolish things thinking it is for love. Allow me to tell you about someone I met who turned my life around, and made me turn 180 degrees from the broken pieces of my past.

Let me begin by telling you that there is no such thing as hopeless…

As a young woman, I had a few of failed relationships. I thought that if I loved truly, it would be given in return. That if I become loyal and generous in love, my partner would reciprocate and do the same. I was wrong and not only in few occasions. In fact, I learned that if you give too much, men tend to abuse it and ask for more. As a result, I ended up broken, devastated and low self esteemed. I thought, I would never find someone who would truly love me unconditionally.

I was wrong.

You might think I am talking about my husband. Well, yes and no. My husband of course, is my greatest gift and my lifetime bonus from heaven! Human as he is like me, however, he fails me as I fail him, he misunderstands me as I misunderstand him. We both have our own shortcomings.

I am talking about someone who disproved me that taking love, asking for acceptance and demanding for intimacy will make me feel complete and happy. He made me realize that it is by giving love, showing genuine acceptance and working towards intimacy that will give me greater joy. It is not in asking, but in giving that I can truly be complete.

This guy’s name is JESUS. When I truly understood what He did on the cross, my whole mindset about life and love changed. He died for me. He gave me a clean slate when He stripped me off of all my sins. He gave me His righteousness and now overflows me with so much grace and love. Something that I never knew before and have never experienced in the past. The love that He gives me just spills like an overflowing stream, something that I can give away freely without fear of running out.

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I challenge you today to seek Him and to experience His love, so you never have to feel alone again. You have got to get to know Jesus to understand why I am so crazy in love with this Man!

Media Credits:
He Loved us First: http://proverbs31.org/
Loved: http://livingoncloud9ine.blogspot.com/2014/01/1-john-419.html

Basal Metabolic Rate, BMI, Calorie Counter, Cardiovascular System, Daily Inspiration, Digestive System, Healthy Living, Hope for You, Lose Weight, Mommy Diaries, You are Loved

My Gift

Today, as I celebrate my birthday I did some serious evaluation about my health. I found out that the last 2 months of 2014 have been very difficult for me, because of too much get together, parties and reunions. It seems to me that I gained all the weight that I tried to lose for 8 months last year. Worse is, this has been going on for the last 5 years of my life.

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Me Thinking

What do I do now? My mind and body tell me I should start a consistent healthier lifestyle this year, keep my weight on check and enjoy everything that is required to achieve them. This thought dawned on me after my last visit to my ophthalmologist who told me that I should start taking care of myself, because he saw some beginning changes around my eyes that he had not seen before. I have to mention also that I had episodes of chest heaviness and shortness of breath on 3 different occasions last year.

Honestly, as a nurse I have been so obsessed with trying to eat healthier and keeping my calorie counter for the longest time. I have tried doing exercise at least twice a week, but my problem is not in doing it, but in maintaining it. In fact, at the beginning of this year I went shopping for more fruits, vegetables, lean meat and chicken portions, plus I loaded on brown rice, healthy sugar, and wheat bread.

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My challenge now, is how I can maintain doing these without feeling obliged or compelled because of my health or my weight? I started my research and was prepared to see hundreds of advertised diets, but there were 2 that caught my attention and, which left me thinking. There was the Beyond Diet and the Paleo Burn technique among many others.

Beyond diet believes that exercise may help in weight reduction, but ultimately diet plays a major role in the body’s ability to burn fats. Paleo Burn, on the other hand, says that removing wheat and all wheat products on my diet will do the trick. Paleo says having more fiber in the body signals the hormones to store up more fat. The 2 methods talked about the role of insulin in aiding the body’s ability to burn fat. However, both their claims confused me in some way, so I dug in some of my stock knowledge as a nurse and helped myself process the information.

I decided, I cannot follow just one diet alone or worse believe in just about everything I read on the Internet. So after some serious digging here are the personal goals I have set for myself to attain:

  1. To have all my blood chemistry values in normal levels,
  2. To lose all the excess weight and fat deposits,
  3. To maintain my ideal weight and to enjoy while I keep it.
  4. To make healthy choices in diet and activities.
  5. Lastly, to live healthier so I can honor God with my body.

I think that the most important goal that will keep me going on is the thought that if I take care of my body, I will honor God and I will prove my love for my family. This means spending decades with them in my healthiest possible state.

To support my goals, here are my action plans that you might get some input from:

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  1. I will eat a healthy balanced diet based on the “old school” food pyramid, from breakfast to dinner to provide my body the nutrients it needs, and to enhance all the hormones necessary for my body systems to reach its optimum levels. It also means I will stay away from junk. Eating healthy also increases my body’s ability to burn more calories as it increases my BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate).
  2. I will exercise for an hour at least 3 times per week to strengthen my heart, and to tone my muscles that will help in burning the food I eat. Remember, the more muscles you have, the more calories you burn.
  3. I will load on water every day.
  4. I will learn cooking healthier recipes.
  5. I will have enough rest and sleep to recharge my body and to promote regeneration.
  6. I will have a regular “Me Time” to relax.
  7. I will pray more so I can manage myself in handling stress effectively.

Just a Few More Tips:

  1. The more color on your plate, the healthier it is.
  2. Pure clean water is still the best way for cleansing and hydration. Infused water is helpful too because it gives additional vitamins especially vitamin C.
  3. The calorie you take in varies depending on your age, body build and activities.
  4. The level, intensity and frequency of your exercise matters if you’re trying to lose or maintain weight.
  5. Choose an exercise that you really enjoy doing, so you can stick to it for the longest time.
  6. Spend more time in prayer; it cleanses not only your body, but also your soul and spirit.

Now, going back to the 2 diets I discovered, here is my take: balanced diet is really important, but you do not need to pay so much money just to have your meals prepared by someone. You can research and learn so many things on your own, but if you have a medical condition, you must consult a professional. Now, on the grain issue, I believe wheat has a lot of benefits for the heart, but be sure you’re eating the real thing. You should have some knowledge on reading the labels too. Lastly, insulin is a hormone thought to process only sugar, but there are research studies that show, it helps burn fat too.

So my gift to myself, my family and my God on my birthday – is my health!

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Blessed Beyond Limit

A peaceful heart leads to a healthy body. Proverbs 14:30 NLT

Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT

Useful Resources: Benefits of Lemon: http://learni.st/users/emily.dingmann.7/boards/14637-why-you-should-be-drinking-lemon-water-in-the-morning Profits from Cucumber: http://learni.st/users/michele.ochoa1/boards/25935-uses-for-cucumbers-that-will-amaze-you Know More About Your Grain: http://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101/identifying-whole-grain-products Insulin Burns Carbs and Fats Too: http://www.jbc.org/content/179/1/175.full.pdf What Exercise Program Fits You: http://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2010/02/01/what-burns-more-calories-cardio-intervals-or-weight-training/ Are You Underweight, Normal Weight or Overweight? Calculate Your BMI: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmicalc.htm How Much Calorie Do You Burn? Calculate Your BMR: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/lose_wt/BMI/bmicalc.htm Your Guide to Good Food (Food Pyramid/MyPlate): http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/pyramid-full-story/ Bible Gateway: https://www.biblegateway.com/ Media Credits: Beyond Paleo: http://www.annlouise.com/blog/2014/09/11/beyond-paleo/ Looks like Me: http://www.freepik.com/free-photo/thinking_20689.htm Blessed: https://www.etsy.com/listing/154396246/inspirational-print-scripture-wall-art?ref=market Health Goals: http://foxborofitclub.com/nutrition/only-1-in-50-americans-meet-heart-health-goals-do-you/ Pray More, Worry Less: https://porelamoradios.wordpress.com/tag/spirituality/ Praying Hands: http://imgkid.com/woman-praying-hands.shtml Developing a Healthy Lifestyle: http://www.riverschurch.co.za/product/developing-healthy-lifestyle/

Daily Inspiration, Hope for You, Successful Living, You are Loved

Who is Your Person?

“Who is your person?” I got this question from Meredith of Grey’s Anatomy, and in that TV series, it was Cristina Yang for her.

This “person” referred to here is someone who you can turn to, count on and lean on when the going gets tough. In my case, I have many “persons” in life and I am so blessed to have them all!

The second (yes, you read me right – second) on my list is of course my loving husband Anthony. We are definitely not a perfect couple because we often disagree in many things, but I am thankful that we have learned to argue without being disagreeable. God knows how much I love him! Cheezy moment!

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Next is my son Josh, who is my number one fan and critic. A very sweet and thoughtful son, but because he got my wit and persuasiveness, we oftentimes clash. All because we are both works in progress. I praise God for His unfinished work in my son’s life because every day I see him slowly, but steadily being transformed from glory to glory.

Then, there are my parents and siblings, in-laws and relatives who have always been there to support my entire family. We may not always see each other eye to eye, but I am proud to say that the genuine love for each other remains intact.

Then, I have the bonus of having the gift of a spiritual family. I praise and thank God for my pastors, mentors and friends from church who deeply love Jesus; and the many women God has placed in my life who take time to hear me out and  lift me up. Your encouragement and prayers keep me pressing on in this journey.  Today, I am stronger and wiser all because of you.

Lastly, there is only One Person who deserves the number one spot and center stage of my life – His Name is Jesus Christ. I will be forever in debt with this Man because He loved me, He saved me, and continues to change me from glory to glory…

I have no fear of the future because I know and I know that the One who holds it is faithful.

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I Stand Boldly for CHRIST!

He says to the Son:

In the beginning, Lord, You laid the foundation of the earth and made the heavens with Your hands.

They will perish, but You remain forever. They will wear out like old clothing.

You will fold them up like a cloak and discard them like old clothing.

But You are always the same; You will live forever.”

Hebrews 1:10-12