Thursday, July 09, 2009

Post CC Training Thoughts (Part 5): Realizations from Being in Someone Else’s Shoe

Having given the opportunity to visit ExcelAsia days after my training with them had been completed have made a mixture of feelings inside of me. I am happy because I’d be seeing some familiar faces again (most notable among them are those of the trainers), as well as new ones (those of the new trainees). On the other hand, I feel nervous because of two things: 1) I’ll go there alone, and 2) I don’t actually know what I’m going to do when I get there.

I went there the same time I usually go there, an hour before the time. I felt great in seeing the trainers again, and I am both flattered and grateful with their glad faces and usual lively spirits as they welcomed me back to ExcelAsia. Honestly, that was one of the things that I missed after the training, considering that for a while now, I’ve been looking for those kinds of environments, but to no avail.

Roanna, my trainer invited me if I would want to talk to her “new kids”. I gave in to the request and I suddenly found myself standing in front of the training room, looking at a crowd that I never actually seen until that time. I was a total stranger to them, and vice-versa; but I suddenly had this flash of thought and again, I found myself talking to them about things that they should know, and about what they’re going to face for the remaining days of their training. Experiences were shared, insights were said, advices were given…and it never stopped there.

After I talked with Roanna’s new class, I thought my role there was over. I was hoping that I would be allowed to just sit and listen to the class, but I was invited to talk to Noel’s class. After sharing my thoughts with them, it turned into a casual conversation; so much as with them asking for my age. People were deceived once more as they thought that I am already at my 30’s or late 20’s (I’m not hurt at all, I usually get the same remarks from other people).

Last but not the least; I was invited to Camille’s class. They were a bunch of quiet people (but I personally believe that there’s more to them…). The same thing happened, I talked to them, questions were raised, and thoughts were exchanged. After all of the talk, I was asked by Roanna to at least help her “kids” with the call simulation exercise. I was able to practice 2 people, and after which, I was called by my parents to go home already. Tough luck, I guess…I sure hoped that I could have stayed longer.

With all of these experience crammed up in just 6 hours or so, I came to realize some things, and I wish to at least go through them in passing, so please bear with me in this write-up.

First of all, somehow, I now have a simple (definitely not full) understanding of the reason why the trainers do what they do. Of course, as their designation suggests, they’re supposed to train people. But there’s more to that. My point is this, unless you’ve gone in their shoes (allegorically speaking), you’ll never know why. I’ve been in their shoes for a little time, but out of it, I’ve learned so much. Maybe you’ll know it, but only in the level of the head. I am still, until now, so grateful and humbled with the opportunity, trust, and confidence given by Roanna, Noel and Camille, by letting me share my thoughts and experiences with their trainees.

Second, I realized even more that maybe; dealing with people is my real “calling” (if that’s how you must put it). I can honestly tell you that as I was there in front of the training rooms for three times, talking to different people, I can’t help but be both somehow amazed at myself (for doing something that I don’t normally do) and with the people listening. There had been instances where the trainees would approach me and ask from me certain tips on dealing with call simulations, and I can’t help myself but to be of service to them. I felt great for a short time that was given to me, and I’m telling you, I’ll be looking for more.

Third, a conversation between me and a certain trainee from Noel’s class (I’m sincerely sorry, I forgot to ask for your names), gave me an idea on how to improve self-esteem. At a certain point of our conversation, he mentioned the saying “If they can do it, I can do it”. Suddenly, I uttered out, “Would it be great if you say that in a different way, like…If they can do it, I can do it…BETTER”. And from there, I started to motivate them even more. I sure just hope it reaches them, and everyone else that I’ve talked to during my visit.

Fourth, what I did was just a small part as compared to the trainers who had been there for quite some time now, and who have done so much for that time they have started training those who wish to work at the call center industry. But in spite of that, the feeling of doing something that you really like makes it so big. I sure enjoyed and loved what I did, and I would love to share even more (as long as opportunity would give me).

With everything that’s been said and done, I am happy that I visited ExcelAsia (and I hope I’ll have a chance to do that again soon). Again, I sincerely thank Roanna, Camille and Noel for giving me a chance to share my experiences and myself with them and the others. All the best for the trainees…More power to ExcelAsia :)

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Post CC Training (Part 4): Placing your Best Foot Forward

For every batch that trains at ExcelAsia, the first day is always one of the important days that they look into. For what reason, if I may ask? Imagine a large group of people in front of the building waiting for their scheduled time for training (that which they received after they were interviewed a few days back), may it be for the 6 a.m. or 2 p.m. shifts. These groups of people may be totally strangers to one another, or some may have been acquainted with one another at some point in time prior to the start of the training. But with all of these works of the imagination going on, my point here is this, in a form of a question: How do these “strangers with one another” become “acquainted” and become “close” throughout the course of the training?

The answer is simple, and I would like to assume that those who would be reading this would definitely have some idea of the answer. But the point that I want to dwell in this thought work right now is the usual manner with how “connections” such as friendships are made. The clue: it’s there in the title of this write-up. Yes, it’s placing your best foot forward.

Going back to the scenario at the first paragraph, let’s just say that there had already been acquaintances between the trainees at ExcelAsia. But what separates those with some friends with those who are flocked with so many? Yes, it may be true that “first impressions last”, this situation included. However, as I’ve mentioned, placing your best foot forward can be the key. I personally believe that this thought of placing your best foot forward applies not only with establishing connections such as friendship. Rather, it can also be used as a “food for thought” in preparation for the world of work…and that’s something we were helped to prepare for, right?

For the trainees who had finished their course with ExcelAsia, and for those who are training at this moment, can you think of one of the activities during the training that perfectly fits as a helping hand, a primer for our entrance to the world of work (in the call center industry, if I may be precise)?

The Mock Interviews…As one of the former trainees at ExcelAsia, I can say on a personal note that for some of my co-trainees, this is one of the activities where they feel panic or fear, even after days at training. I’m not really sure why, but honestly, I was one of those afraid trainees before. But in spite of fear to face the mock interviewer (that is, our trainer and any trainer for that matter) would never forget to remind us that this is the one of the crucial steps in employment (in whatever kind of job). Why crucial? It is because whatever we do or say in our interview after training would definitely create an impact towards the interviewer, who would then later on decide if the one interviewed is worthy to have the job.

Yes, the exam and anything and everything that’s under procedure before employment is important, but with the interview, the interviewee (that is, the job seeker) will have the chance to make an impression as well as prove and back-up whatever the results of the exam may be. Plus, it’s your time to “put your best foot forward”.

I hope that those who had gone through the interviews (and were hired), that you’d still “place your best foot forward” once at work. And for those who are still training and are still looking for the opportunity for work, think of ways and means to “place your best foot forward”. Remember, our trainers are preparing us (or have prepared us already). It’s time for us to do our part.

To end this little write up, let me just quote something that Roanna shared to our class that helped me to “place my best foot forward”.

“Always remind yourself that an interview is just like a friendly conversation. The interviewer wants to be your friend. What you just need to do is to win him over”.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Post CC Training Thoughts (Part 3): Goal-Setting

For all who had trained (we included) at ExcelAsia Training and Development Center, the reason for being there and training there was practically the same: to have a job. Not any job to be exact, but to have a job in the call center industry. For those who are training now, and would be training in the future, what is your reason…really? What is your goal?

Let’s face the truth, not everyone that goes into ExcelAsia wants to have a job, or even lands a job, in the call center industry. Moreover, some of them leave even before the training is completed. One factor or reason after another, but that’s the truth. And there’s more. However, this is not why I’m writing this short thought work.

For those who sincerely and seriously wished to work in the call center industry through the help of ExcelAsia, I sincerely believe that the trainers had never failed to remind us to set our goal, and keep looking at it. I, for my part, always remember even up to this point what our trainer (Roanna) constantly reminded us of…and it goes this way:

“What is your goal? To have a job!”

“Job where? Job in the call center!”

As of this moment, I’m taking my chances in communicating with my co-trainees, and I am pleased to know that some of them already landed their jobs in their respective call centers, and they would be starting sometime soon. I’m continuously praying and hoping for the rest, as they find their own ways, whether it is a life as a call center employee, or something else.

With regards to goal-setting, the trainers never failed in helping us do that. I remember one of them said: “What they can do is to help us find our paths and give us a bird’s eye view and a head-start…the rest of the journey rests on us”.

Post CC Training Thoughts (Part 2): On Confidence and Pursuit of Excellence

How is confidence defined? I’ve browsed over the thesaurus, only to find a lot of words matching the word confidence. With all of its alternate words and different meanings, it spells one thing for me: it is something that someone has to have in order to survive the difficult thing called life.

I could honestly say that prior to my training that I really lacked confidence. There had been a lot of times that I demonstrated this fact and I also honestly believe that most of them, if not all, are not pleasant or even worthy of remembering. My lack of confidence are caused by a lot of factors, most notable among them are some certain failures and mistakes that I’ve done in the past. A certain mistake that I did in the past totally marred my personality, and for three years I’ve been trying to correct that mistake. And in doing so, a lot of things happened made me, but still…most of them broke me.

At this point, I would like to concentrate on the etymological meaning of confidence, inspired by the fruits of my labor at ExcelAsia. At first look, the word itself can be traced to two Latin words: “con” and “fide”, meaning “with” and “faith”, respectively. With these words in minds, I can say that the word confidence primarily means that which having “faith with”. Considering that confidence is something that cannot be given, I believe confidence is something that is all the more gained by the self. Placing these two thoughts together, confidence for me means “having faith with the self”.

Now faith can be something of a surrealistic term, so it may be better to simplify it. Thus, in simple terms: confidence means “believing with one’s own self”.

As I’ve said somewhere in the beginning of this thought work, I lacked confidence in the past. I did not say that I do not have confidence; rather, I lacked confidence. I prefer being behind the shadows rather than be in the limelight, I prefer working with groups rather than stand out and be the best that I can be. I easily succumb to pressure from friends and criticisms of the crowd. And there’s still a lot more. Having the experience of being born to an environment where comparisons between siblings have been a major issue did not help in boosting my confidence even by a bit. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I left home at an early age. But the place where I had hoped to boost my confidence became the total opposite of it.

With my experiences in the past, I can somehow relate my lack of confidence to mediocrity…of just being “in the middle” of everything. But my sense of safety in the arms of mediocrity changed, all thanks to the training that I had in ExcelAsia.

Who would have thought that two simple instructions could help me begin the change from mediocrity to excellence? Roanna (our trainer) reminded us constantly to 1) SPEAK ENGLISH, and to speak 2) LOUDER. And from there, she related a lot of things from how she started just like any one of us, to the person that she is now. Honestly, on a personal note (and I believe my co-trainees would agree to me as well), I’ve never met someone with so much joy and passion with what she’s doing. Her simple encouragements and positive criticisms during the training had always been a breath of fresh air for all of us. I know she never gave us the confidence that she has. Rather, she is instrumental for each and every one of us finding our own confidence. With her stories and instructions that she enthusiastically shared with us, we found the strength to find our own stories to tell, and our own knowledge and insights to keep.

The other trainers who had been with us for the duration of our training had also been instrumental in helping us finding our way for excellence. Going back on a personal note, Noel for example unconsciously encouraged me (by his character and attitude), to speak up and always put my best foot forward. Camille, on the other hand, exuded simplicity and style by means of her words and actions. Al and Wene inspired me to deal with contradictions in my personality and attitude. Kat, for her part (as she was with us for one session), reminded me that there is so much more than what meets the eye.

My co-trainees also had their share of help with me finding me in me. As every person is bound for confidence and excellence, my daily encounters with them helped me to realize that people don’t actually desire for the pretender in me, but for the real me. And if I’m going to survive the crazy world of work, I have to believe in myself, put my best foot forward, and always remind myself that even if others would expect things about me, as long as I do my best in the best way that I can (another thing that I learned from the training…reserved for another time), I would succeed.

All I can say now, I’m more confident than before to face the world of work, and life itself.

Post CC Training Thoughts (Part 1)

“Great people…great memories…”

A few days back (Thursday, June 25, 2008), my call center training ended with the endorsement that transpired at Ascott Makati. I started the training last June 8, and until now, I cannot help but be thankful for those who had been instrumental to the accomplishment of this preparation for work.

I first encountered ExcelAsia Training and Development Center from Jobstreet, back to the time when I decided to work, and to work in the call center, to be exact. Honestly, I never saw myself having a job that corresponds to my college degree, so I thought, “If I cannot bank on my degree for work, I believe I could rely on my skills and knowledge of other things”. I’m not saying that I know everything there is to know about the call center industry prior to the training. If that had been the case, I should not have undergone the training in the first place. I sent my application, and was scheduled for an interview last July 5, which was a Friday, at their Pasong Tamo branch. That day came, and it was my first time to go to that certain part in Makati; and though it was sort of a pain for the first time that I went there, it paid off…I was accepted for training. With this, I thank Ms. Lauren Reyes for accepting me as one of the trainees.

First day came (June 8), and with a stroke of luck, I ended up with one of the craziest bunch that I’ve been with. Of course, there were the usual first-day jitters running throughout the room, but that was quickly dissolved thanks to a super-enthusiastic and lively communications trainer (Roanna Ruiz) and 20 trainees (with me included). After the GTKO’s and ice-breakers, we finally had the comfortable feeling to start the training. We were then joined by other trainees the next day, thus we became 26 trainees all in all under the guidance of Roanna. Though some of us left prior to finishing the training, we still had a blast!

Hours and days passed through our training and there was not a single day wasted…each day was given to us as a chance to learn and grow, not only as future call center agents but as persons, first and foremost. It was just kind of sad because a few days before the end of our training, most of us got sick (and I believe it started with me). I was out of training for two days, and somehow, I felt that those days were lost beyond recovery.

And now, the training is finally over. I haven’t heard much from the people who I used to be with back at ExcelAsia, considering that this is the period of job-hunting and endorsements for most of them. I am sincerely hoping for the best for them. To the “Pioneers” (though I prefer calling our group “Sickos and Psychos”), good luck and my prayers are with you as you go on starting anew in the call center industry. To the other trainees that I’ve been with, still, good luck and I hope you would get what you long for. On the side, I just feel sad that I was not able to know some of the people who I went with during the training…I just had the chance to talk to some during the endorsement day, which was kind of late already. But anyway, my prayers and high hopes for all of you.

As for the afternoon shift trainers (Noel, Al, Camille, Wene, Kat and most especially Roanna), I sincerely thank all of you for being a part of me and every trainees’ growth and learning. Let me speak for the others as I say this: We can assure you that no matter where we’ll end up working (May it be in the call center industry or elsewhere), we will be the best that we can be, thanks to all of you.

To end this little write-up (others will follow soon), I just want to quote something that Roanna shared to us…I’m hoping that everyone else can see its worth:

“Do not concern yourself with the feeling of fear and nervousness in doing something. Rather, concentrate on the feeling of satisfaction after doing what needs to be done”.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

at the crossroads

A couple of weeks into this summer, I come across a lot of things that I need to think about. Maybe this is the only thing that I’m good at: thinking. I still am at the crossroads of whether pursuing graduate studies or work wherever I think my Bachelor’s degree could take me. Thus, the thing that I do most, besides the usual daily household chores I do at this time of year…is thinking about this and that, the connection of one thing to another...In short, I’m making my life complicated.

After I graduated from college, my mother started to express her sentiment towards work; and she already decided to retire by May of this year. She’s going to explore new grounds and try something new. She wants to pursue her studies in the Family Counseling field, and maybe at some point in time, teach. On the other hand, my dad just had his operation last April 17, and is now on leave from work, recovering. He hopes he can come back to work a few days from now. He said that staying at home bores him…we share the same feeling. But the thing is, when summer comes and they’re away at work or elsewhere…I’m left in charge.

My older siblings are concentrating on their work. Our youngest will go on his COCC training by next week. As for me, and as I said earlier, I am deciding whether should I go for studying once more or work…I want to study, yes. After that, I am planning to teach, and I want to teach. But there are certain things that hinder that goal from happening still.

My girlfriend was right, and I owe it to her that I see the bigger picture now. I still have time, I believe so. I have to think that I am not the only one who’s going to gain or lose with whatever action I would take. Besides, I realized that I taking masteral studies in philosophy after freshly graduating from college could be an unwise decision. I need to experience a lot more before I take on that road. With regards to work, I think it’s time for me to be mature enough to take on the challenges of the outside world. I’ve been sheltered too long for me to realize that I cannot depend on anyone for so long, and that I have to stand up one day, in one way or another.

Somehow, I envy my girlfriend at that part. She’s now having her On-the-Job Training (OJT) in Makati, and so far, she said she’s having the time of her life. She knows so much about practical things, and most of the time, she gives me pieces of this and that to remember. I can say that though she doesn’t look like it, she is way more mature than me in more ways than one. I just hope that one day, I could be the same. Because right now, I’m not…I know.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Me and My Girlfriend :)

As of this moment, I am with my girlfriend for 1 year, 9 months, 20 days and counting. And I cannot wait until we reach our 2nd year anniversary…much more when that time comes when I can say that we are together for life.

Somehow, at the onset, this year’s haven’t been good to our relationship, due to many factors of which I would be depressed if still remembered. If it is possible to erase it in our history, I would gladly take that. But the fact remains that it won’t happen, and the best thing to do to those “dark moments” is mold them to something where both of us can learn. I give my girlfriend the credit for this one for two reasons: she has more maturity in dealing with this kind of relationship, and she is the one who in spite of anything and everything, continues to stay strong for us.

Actually, I cannot blame the time or the circumstance; I could just point at my actions and reactions which led to the unpleasant things that occurred in our relationship. Pointing fingers or playing the blame game isn’t part of my attitude. I cannot even blame her, why should I?

I can remember the time when I posted here some of the thoughts that I came up with regarding relationships. I can also remember that I mentioned in the last line that those thoughts remain as such unless lived. I tried to live those thoughts, some of them proved to be true in certain percentages, and some others still need to be reviewed and revised.

Going back, there were a lot of realizations that happened as my girlfriend and I go through our lives, as individual persons, and as a couple. Sometimes, I’m at fault of not knowing where the line is drawn. I admit that at times, I over-exaggerate, argue at almost everything and even shut my mind in what I want to think. She may not tell me, but I realize that there are times that both of us tend to hurt one another without both of us knowing. Still, I hold on to the thought that “success and failure of our relationship cannot be attributed to just one or the other, but on us both”. Since we’re still together, growing stronger and more faithful to one another…we’re still doing the right thing, in spite of all the rough edges that we had or have at this point

From the moment we first met back at 2005 until now, I won’t ask for anything to be changed, even if I’m given a chance to. Yes, things may have been better or more colorful, but I am more thankful at the fact that, through thick and thin, through the ups and downs that both of us shared…we continue to let each other know and feel that we are loved. Everything else follows.

I can continue on relating things about us, but let me stop for the meantime…
The truth remains: I love her so much, and she knows the rest :)

Blessings in my Academic Life

After the Foundation Week in our school, I decided to park my pen (or my typing fingers) for some time to focus in studying for both my undergraduate thesis and my comprehensive examination in Philosophy, dubbed as the “De Universa”.

I’ve been studying for the comprehensive examination ever since the start of the school year, however, the things that I’ve studied vanish from my mind after some time. With that situation, I start from the beginning once more. I’ve got seven philosophical treatises to familiarize (if not memorize) myself with (Critics, Metaphysics, Theodicy, Cosmology, Rational Psychology, General and Special Ethics); not counting the philosophy history subjects (Ancient, Medieval, Modern and Contemporary) and the electives (Political and Filipino Philosophy). Honestly, I am not an intellectual student who always got straight A’s or flat 1’s in the transcript…I have good grades with some, if not all, subjects; and that’s the point! Considering also that I am just a transferee student in my present school, I need to make a lot of adjustments. But, with how everything’s looking at this point, I think and believe that everything’s worth it.

Last February 27, we had our first part of the “De Universa”: the written examinations. Bro. Erik, our Pakistani classmate (through votes), picked the treatise from which the written examinations will focus. He picked Rational Psychology. Unfortunately for me, during exam day, I was overtaken by fear and panic…I know (even if I still don’t know the results) that I fell short of what I should have been able to accomplish. After I left the examination room, there was nothing but sorrow in my mind. I thought, “if this is what happened to me during the written exams, how worse will it be for the oral exams?!” I panicked some more.

A week before the oral examinations, I resigned myself to concentrate on the preparations (that is, after talking and seeking advice from those who I know I can trust, especially my girlfriend). They’re right, whatever happened in the past remains at the past, and I have to focus on the present. Though there’s still fear in me, I tried to give more time thinking about what to do and how to deal with the situation when the time comes for me to face the panel, present the theses that I picked, and as our prayer goes, present myself “with thoroughness and charm”.

March 6, the day of the oral examinations came. The examinations began with the sad news that one of our classmates decided to withdraw from the exams, the reason of which is personal (and I respect it). Thus, we were left with 4 examinees, in the following order: Bro. Jomar, Bro. Erik, Eric (a diocesan seminarian), and lastly, me. As some of us waited for our turn, Fr. Rey Dela Cruz (the Rector of the Salesian Post-novitiate community), gave us some words of advice, one of which was “It’s not our problem what our grades will be, it will be at the panel’s shoulders whether they’ll make us pass, or retake”. The other was this, as I remember it: “There were three people who thought of the idea of struggle. The first said that ‘I struggled, and I won’. The second said that ‘I struggled, I failed, but I stood up and won’. The last one said that ‘I struggled and I continue to struggle’.” He then asked me, who am I among the three. I said, “the answer would come after I finished my turn for the exams”.

My turn came at last at around 11:00 in the morning. As I picked my theses to present, I was silently praying to God to help me. My prayers were answered that time when I picked Thesis 1 of Cosmology: On the Essence of Quantity, and Thesis 7 of Special Ethics: On the Duties of Man towards God. The presentation came, and though I was not able to answer the entire panel’s questions (consisting of Fr. Mike, SDB, Fr. Joel, SDB and Fr. Paul, SDB) at me after the presentation, I was satisfied enough that I was able to overcome my trauma. Pass or retake, it doesn’t matter…I know that whatever the results may be, I know I was a winner. And after the results came, I was affirmed that I am a winner. I was graded 6.5…Probatus…and that means I passed!

With regards my thesis, I was given the suggestion by Fr. Joel, SDB, to work on the philosopher John Rawls, who just died in 2002. He gave me a chance to explore a whole new experience in the concept of justice, and I am deeply thankful for the opportunity he gave me. As of this moment, I am making the finishing touches (and revisions) to my undergraduate thesis entitled “Justice as Fairness in the Justice Theory of John Rawls”, and hoping that this could help me further to take my steps closer to finishing my tertiary academic life.

With these blessings that I received in my academic life, I cannot help but be thankful. I am now nearer to my dream of graduating this school year…and continue on becoming a better person.

What are my plans after college?
I plan to have my Master’s Degree, and teach…I believe that this is now my calling.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Sharing for the day (January 30, 2009)

“Back during the time when there were many threats against Don Bosco’s life, Grigio would come to his rescue…”

This was one of the ways on how Fr. Arnold Sanico, SDB described Grigio, the grey wolf that subsequently became the mascot of Don Bosco Schools. Relating one of those many instances in the life of Don Bosco where Grigio intervened, Fr. Arnold narrated this story:

“It was in the year 1852 when Grigio first appeared to Don Bosco. There was a time when there was someone following him; walking slow as he walked slowly, and fast as he went fast. When he turned around, he saw the man carrying a big piece of wood, intending to kill Don Bosco. Don Bosco tried to run, but at a distance, he saw a group of people with the intent of killing him as well. When all hope seems lost, however, Grigio came out of nowhere, and saved Don Bosco’s life. In fear, the people who wanted to kill him begged Don Bosco to send ‘his’ big dog away…he agreed, only with the agreement that they would never come after his life again”

Who was Grigio really, the “asong hindi naman aso”, according to Fr. Arnold?

In all of the instances when Grigio appeared in the life of Don Bosco, he can be seen as a guardian angel.

Fr. Arnold’s message to his talk this morning was “Whenever a man does what God wants, God will never fail to protect him”. It’s just like what Grigio was to Don Bosco, his protection from harm, and his guide when lost.

Don Bosco, in his lifetime, tried and tried with the best of what he can to do the Lord’s will. This was never left unnoticed. He received both sides of the coin with regards the response of the people of his time. Some admired him; while others hated him…hated him so much that they even planned to get rid of him. But what’s more important to see here is that Don Bosco did not do it for the adulation of the people…but for the glory of God. His efforts were not in vain…God came to his rescue in those trying times, and the fruits of his labor are plenty.

As the message of Fr. Arnold came to me, I remembered the last words of a saint in his dying moment. He said, “I have done my part, may Christ teach you to do yours”.

Bosconians, let us examine ourselves…Are we doing God’s will?
Who or what is our Grigio?

Let us pray to the Lord for this day that with the help and inspiration given to us by our founder and friend, St. John Bosco, we may learn to be strong in doing God’s will, and be confident in His unfailing protection over us.

St. John Bosco, pray for us.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sharing for the day (January 29, 2009)

“May isang bata na ang gusto ay hanapin ang sikreto sa isang masayang buhay. Isang gabi, nanalangin sa sa Panginoon na ipakita sa kanya ang sagot sa kanyang paghahanap. Nang gabing iyon, nanaginip siya:

Nakita niya ang sarili niya sa isang kagubatan, at sa kagubatang iyon ay nakakita siya ng isang pilay na usa…may sugat sa binti. Takot and usa na baka maabutan siya ng mababangis na hayop, kaya nanalangin ito. Ngunit, pagkatapos ng kanyang panalangin ay may dumating na isang mabangis na lobo. Ngunit nakakamangha ang nakita ng bata…sa halip na kainin ng mabangis na lobo ang usa, nilapitan nya ito at dinilaan ang sugat nito. Dinalhan rin ng lobo ang usa ng pagkain. Nang gumaling na ang usa ay umalis na rin ang lobo.

Sa pagkakataong ito ay nagising na rin ang bata at sinabi niya sa kanyang sarili na para makamit nya ang tunay na masayang buhay, ay kailangan niyang gayahin ang usa…ipapaubaya na lang niya ang sarili niya sa Diyos.

Ngunit makalipas ang ilang araw ay tila hindi pa niya nakakamit ang gusto niyang masayang buhay. Muli siyang nagdasal sa Panginoon, ngunit sa pagkakataong ito ay tila nagrereklamo siya na kung bakit hindi pa niya nakakamit ang masayang buhay. Muli, siya ay nanaginip:

Sa pagkakataong ito, nandoon pa rin siya sa kagubatan, ngunit kasama na niya ang Panginoon. Sinabi ng bata ang kanyang hinaing sa Panginoon kung bakit hindi pa siya nagiging masaya sa kabila ng pagtulad niya sa usa sa kanyang panaginip. Sabi ng Panginoon…”Hindi dapat ang usa ang iyong tinularan, kundi and lobo”.
This is the summarized story of what was related to the EPC (Educative Pastoral Community) of Don Bosco Canlubang by Rev. Fr. Rey dela Cruz, SDB, Rector of the Post-Novitiate Seminary.

Yesterday’s reflection talked about happiness of the self. Today, the message was clear: to be the givers and sharers of happiness to other people.

As the institution comes closer to its peak of the celebration, people from other places are crowding in, wanting and hoping to see a change of environment…like a breath of fresh air. Yes, we have prepared exhibits, programs and activities not only for the members of this institution but also for the visitors; but what matters most is that as we experience happiness as a whole, we are able to radiate happiness to each and every one of us…Bosconians or non-Bosconians alike.

Though I am not a Salesian, I was able to see in the lives of the Salesians around me the fulfillment of one of the guidelines of their Order, which is, Joy and Optimism. Much more, that Joy and Optimism that they have are not only kept within them, but shared with the rest of the community here. I firmly attest to that.

Going against the flow, just like the ferocious wolf that reached out and helped the deer back on its feet…can be really seen as happiness. Let us pray to the Lord with the help of St. John Bosco, that we may be always agents and sharers of happiness to one another.

St. John Bosco, pray for us.