“How long could you go without a source of income? If you don’t have a paying job for a few months or even a year, would you still be able to trust that God was working everything for your good?”. This was the introduction question of an article which I stumbled on today while I was browsing the web.
Those two questions took me walking down the memory lane. Suddenly it was the year 2020 again. I was hoping for a better and happier year like everyone else. Because why not? I’ve got everything well planned. I will be taking my vacation in March and will be attending our long-awaited family reunion. My sister, brother, his family and myself will be going back to the Philippines to spend time with our aging parents. We will be having fun spending time together and visiting different places. I’ve listed several locations where we can go and just have some happy bonding-time moments.
After my vacation I’ll put my second plan into action. I will put more effort in my small business. And so I was thinking of spending more time learning the ins and outs of this business, to go deeper and at the same time have my nine to five job secured. Everything was going perfectly in my mind. Then out of the blue Covid-19 came in full force. It was like God was telling me that I can make all the plans but in the end He will decide if it will happen or ……. not.
The plane tickets were cancelled together with my most awaited vacation with my whole family. I took my vacation leave when the pandemic started to get nasty. So I stayed home…and stayed home…and stayed home. During the second week of August I received a call from my Uncle. My father passed away. Not because of Covid-19 but because of multiple organ failure. He was 84 years old. We were not able to see his funeral for all flights were cancelled at this time. First wave of the pandemic was happening. There were only a few relatives allowed during his wake. Our hearts were crying out for our loss and for our mother at the same time for we couldn’t be with her in her most trying moment.
After two weeks I received another sad news. I received a call from my manager that my job has ended. To make the matter a little bit less devastating he said they were letting me go “without a cause”. So I was terminated without a cause just like that. I would like to yell at him on the phone saying something like “Hey my Father just passed away and now you’re doing this to me?” But how will he know what has happened to me during the past weeks or months? It was not like we’re close buddies. And how will he avoid the lay-offs when he is not the owner of the company but just a mere manager? In the middle of this crisis I was still trying my best to be objective and not to be overwhelmed by the situation at hand.
It was changing season soon, autumn is coming and I was having the time of my life. Yes, the time of my life putting my faith into action. My mantra was and is still – Faith over Fear. The more I should cling on to my faith in times like this. When the world seems crumbling down I have a super hero who can save me and His name is Jesus. I started writing down all God’s promises in stickies and pinned them on the wall in my bedroom. I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. With God everything is possible. Ask and it shall be given you, seek and you shall find, knock and the door will be opened. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you. God is my refuge, my ever-present help in times of trouble and the lists went on. And my days went on…
Our family started having video calls everyday. We found a way to bond, to see each others faces, to show our love and comfort one another. Everything is figureoutable ( thanks Marie Forleo) when you have Jesus. I got by because of my employment insurance and I was slowly getting back doing my small business again, but God has other things in mind.
Aside from the fact that my only source of income was from my employment insurance I was also aware of the difficulty of travelling during this pandemic. But I kept thinking of my mother. It was like someone was telling me to just go and see her. It was like the Holy Spirit whispering into my ears saying “Go visit your mother before it’s too late.” I prayed hard and took the leap of faith. I booked a round-trip ticket to the Philippines for December hoping to be back in Canada before 2021.
It was a very exhausting experience travelling during a pandemic. There was the CPR testing and the waiting period for the result of the test. We had to book into a hotel for 3 days and be quarantined again for 14 days. It took us a while before we got to hug our mother but it was worth the wait. The Lord allowed her to celebrate her 80th birthday with us and then she was taken away after a week. Our mother passed away with my sister and I on her bedside holding her hands. The events went so fast. And then I was back in Canada…now an orphan.
It is written in Ecclesiastes chapter 3, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.”
My faith says not to question why God is allowing these things to happen. For who can fathom the mind of God? His thoughts are not my thoughts, nor are His ways my ways. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are God’s ways higher than mine.
After seven months in the year of 2021, the Lord gave me a new and better job. “You, who have shown me great and severe troubles, Shall revive me again, And bring me up again from the depths of the earth. You shall increase my greatness, and comfort me on every side.” – Psalm 71:20-21
When Jesus comes the second time my faith says I’ll be seeing and hugging and rejoicing with my parents again. We can have our family reunion uninterrupted in the most beautiful location , in the new place which Jesus prepared for everyone of us who believes in Him. “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:3
“And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4