When I read this book, I was amazed and in awe of how Tito Frank Padilla explained and pointed out the importance of virtues, and how he connected them with the wisdom of God. I remembered my story when I was discerning to be a full-time pastoral worker. I always have this line in my mind, “Walang um-OO sa Diyos na pinabayaan Niya.” (Nobody gave their yes to God and got forsaken.)
This has always been my conviction ever since I started serving in the community. My desire to become a full-time pastoral worker started when I was still studying. It is a dream that I believe God has planted in my heart from the day He called me to serve Him and my fellow youth. Since then, the Lord has shown me His greatness in all the things that I do for Him. He has made me see and feel that He is always there for me. He lets me experience things that I did not expect to see and know. He is always with me. The journey I witnessed while serving the Lord allowed me to realize that He is never lacking with generosity and that He doesn’t know how to forget and forsake His servants. Up to this day, my relationship with the Lord continues to grow.
However, there came to a point in my life that I thought this dream was not really for me. It was when my father passed away. From that moment, I became conscious of my earthly desires and the things that I wanted and how I would get them. My father was the one who always provides for our family and when he passed away, the fear that I could not provide for my family in place of him made a great impact on the decisions I needed to make. To add, the opinion of people about my degree and my license as a Criminologist affected me a lot. They said that everything will be put to waste if I pursued my call to become a full-time missionary. At that time, I was worried and was greatly tempted to just let my calling go and just pick life’s practicality over serving the Lord more fully. I was so confused at that time and so I started to discern. As I was discerning, it led me to realize that my dream to become a full-time missionary for the community never went away. It was fear that overpowered this God-given desire in my life. And it gave me an assurance that this desire, dream, and calling is clear: I wanted to give more for the Lord; that even though, in following Him, I may not have all the capacity to provide like my father and I may not have all the things I wanted, but I will always have the Lord with me and I know that He is enough. I should always trust that I have a Father in heaven who will always be there for me.
With this, I firmly desire to offer myself to the Lord, and this time, with no fear and hesitation. I know that I can offer myself to God in becoming a missionary and I believe that God is still calling me to give more of me in doing His mission through this community. For me, saying ‘yes’ to whatever God is calling me is my way of saying “I love you too” to the Lord for all the love that He is giving me; and this is my way of expressing my gratitude to God and my way of keeping this calling sacred. To become a missionary for the Lord has always been and will always be my way of life.
Until now, I still don’t know what exactly God wanted me to be but after reading this book, I fully give my trust and my life to God. I still believe that God is calling me to do His mission even if I can’t fully understand His wisdom.
To God be the Glory.
Karlo Marbida ia a FTW of MFC Youth serving as the zone servant of the Luzon Provinces.