Publisher's Note

  • Publisher’s Note

    It’s been 23 years since I’ve moved to Canada from the Philippines.  I remember that the first thing I looked for was a Filipino community paper so I can read some news about the community being new in Calgary.  I never found any Filipino community paper back in 1996. From them on I told myself that [...]

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Page added on January 21, 2012

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by Pastor Nilo

It’s New Year and everyone is full of expectations though mixed with uncertainty of what this year may bring forth.  What preoccupies our thoughts in the transition of time sometimes dictate our feelings and trigger our actions. If we are to have a soul searching, an honest-to-goodness question would ring the bell — “What’s new in the New Year?”  Is it not another page of  history in our lives, as some would say?

The Apostle Paul says (in Philippians 3:13), “I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” As we look back, last year may have a mix of good and bad memories that may  linger in our thoughts.  But let’s focus on things that inspire us to have a positive outlook of the future and discard or learn lessons from those that  rob us of peace and happiness in life.

Life, being God’s precious gift, is  good and everything that is new excites us – even to our countrymen  who were gravely affected by the ravaging typhoon “Sendong.”  We thank God for the outpouring of generous givers who served as God’s hands and feet for the calamity-stricken families.  Sufferings indeed produces the best in a person’s character, foremost of which is being ‘resilient’, i.e. having the capability to recover after devastation.  I admire a Filipino father who thanked God for saving the whole family, despite being homeless as his house was flatly wiped out by the storm and what remains is their refrigerator and a P1,500 (almost $35 CAD) in his pocket.  But he’s hoping to recover by making fruit salad which he sells for P5 per serving (earning P1 per salad sold).  Knowing that the source of blessings and perfect gifts is God, there will always be hope because of His never-ending resources and sovereign control.

Sufferings then, if taken positively with faith in God, will humble us before our Creator as we see the inevitable truth that ‘naked we came to this world and naked we will depart from it.’  This will lessen our attachment to the materialistic world and encourage us all the more to desire for a much better and glorious dwelling in  heaven, where there will no longer be  pain and tears, as we acknowledge the fact that we are but pilgrims briefly travelling through this vale of earth.  And as the Christian song goes, “Because He (our Lord Jesus) lives, we can face tomorrow.  With the New Year upon us, let’s  hold on to things that have endearing eternal value.  With a new heart of obedience, Jesus says to His disciples (in John 13:34-35)  — 34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Have a healthy and a successful New Year!  May God bless you and keep you all.

Pastor Nilo Briones serves at “Jesus Word of Life Church”, an international Christian church, celebrating  worship and fellowship every Saturday at North East Bible Church, 175 Whitefield Drive NE from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. If you need prayers, don’t hesitate to contact Pastor Nilo at (587) 215-3377. “God, mission, our mission:  to preach the gospel, feed the hungry, and share the love of Christ.”


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