You Complete Me

These words became so eminent in the 90’s after Jerry Maguire, played by Tom Cruise confesses his true feelings to Dorothy Boyd, the character played by Renee Zellweger. During that time, single women  including myself shudder at the thought of having someone say the exact same words to us. I mean, who wouldn’t? “You complete me” is the ultimate pick-up line!

That line became so endearing to many hopeless romantics, who wished someday their prince would come. Some of these women admittedly believe finding their one true love would complete their being, their life. I also had the same belief, that only the one person can fill the void in my lonely heart.

I may have shared in a previous post that I grew up with parents who fought a lot. They would argue about almost anything and that left me feeling insecure about their love for me and for my brother. As I grew older, unconsciously I was looking for love all the time. I would seek out new friends and hold on to them for as long as I can. I also looked to boys to find the elusive love I was looking for. I had my list of 101 crushes then and had a boyfriend at age 12. I have kept this relationship from my mom because I knew she would not allow it but it made me feel good at that time.

That relationship did not last long as my family moved to another city. In high school, I also sought other relationships until I met my first serious boyfriend during my senior year. The relationship lasted for almost three years and when it ended I was so devastated. I thought of ways of bringing him back but to no avail.  Just a few months after the break-up, he told me he already had a new girlfriend. That was a slap on my face. There was I was trying to win him back but he was so busy “getting to know” someone else already. It took a long time to finally get over this boy. I seriously thought we were going to end up together. I would picture him asking me to marry him and we will live happily ever after. He would be the one to complete me. Sadly, when the relationship ended, I felt incomplete again.

In each relationship that I had after that made me believe that the guy I was with was “the one”. Unfortunately, they were not. Many years had passed before I met “the one” for me. I met my husband in 2001 and got married the following year. It was a sweet and intimate wedding with family and friends to witness us exchange vows to each other. But soon after the wedding, I still felt incomplete. I began to doubt our relationship and thought that I married the wrong person. When our firs child was about 1-2 years of age, that discontent lingered. I asked myself why is there still that hole in my heart. I thought getting married would solve this predicament but I ended up being unhappy still.

I got reconnected with old friends from high school. They had invited me to join them in their game of badminton. Because I was out of shape that time, I excitedly joined them. We played Wednesday nights and after each game we would catch up on things over coffee. One of the persons in the group was an old flame. Little did I know that my old feelings for this person were coming back. That person was still single at that time and we just connected right away. We would exchange text messages or calls daily and that felt good. I knew the relationship was wrong but I thought, “Isn’t my happiness more important than right or wrong?”

I was talking about it to another friend in the group and I was sharing that I would be willing to leave my husband and go with this person. I also mentioned I didn’t care anymore if my parents or the people around me would hate me for it but I was willing to take the risk because being with this person makes me happy. I was surprised to hear her response, “Fix your marriage first”. I didn’t expect that from her since she was also in the same kind of relationship as I was. Not very long after that conversation, the person I was having an emotional relationship with told me that causing problems in  our marriage was not the intention and that I had be let go if it would ruin the marriage. We ended the relationship. I was rejected.

There I was unhappy with my life. Finding wholeness in other people. Finding completeness in being a mom yet none of them did it for me. I felt lonely, desperate and angry. Until a new couple friend of ours invited my husband and I for a bible study in their home. We agreed to join them every Friday and we went through the Purpose Driven Life. My eyes were opened to the reality that I exist in this world not for myself but for a purpose and that is to glorify God in all I do. I exist for his pleasure not mine and that it’s not all about me but about Him alone. We are recipients of His grace and mercy and instruments of his love.

I realized that the void I had in my  heart for a very long time could only be filled by the love of God. No person, position in life, riches or other tangible things can complete me. Only the Creator, the God of the heavens and the earth can do that. Because it was He who created that void in the first place. He put that there so that in His perfect timing, our longing to be reunited with Him goes hand in hand with His call to repentance.  I surrendered my life to Christ in 2004.

It has been 10 years since that couples’ bible study and my husband and I are continuously seeking the Lord in our lives. We don’t have a perfect marriage but God is fixing it supernaturally. I am still a work in progress but I am stepping out in faith to share what Christ has done in my life and my family. Now I can confidently utter the same words by Jerry Maguire to my God… Lord, you complete me!

16 So we have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! 17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

18 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 2 Corinthians 5:16-18

Gone Too Soon

A Time for Everything Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

1 For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
2 A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
5 A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
6 A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.

Today, I lost a dear uncle to liver cancer. He was only 47 years old.

Growing up in the 80’s was fun. I have fond memories of spending our summer vacation at my grandfather’s house. Technically, it was the ancestral house of my mom’s family. It was owned by my great grandparents then when they migrated to the United States my grandfather and his family moved there. Also living in that house were my aunts and uncles. One of them was my Kuya Charlie.

We were still in grade school when I first met him. He was out of high school or in college that time, I couldn’t remember anymore. I recall seeing him every afternoon riding his black BMX bike. If he is not pedaling, he would be running wearing those very short running shorts. I would always tease him then because of his outfit.

There were also times when the kids (me, my younger brother, my young aunt and uncle) would goof around with him. He would let us record our conversations over his portable tape recorder and we would play it over and over and laugh at ourselves. He would also tell ghost stories with a comedic twist. I’ve known him for being a funny person. He would always make me laugh.

I would sometimes go to his room and listen to music or tinker at some of his world war memorabilia. I would also go to his room when I’m in a singing mood and he would let me use his cassette player. After belting my heart out to my favorite songs, he would ask me if my tooth hurts. Puzzled by his concern, I would him why. Then he would say, “Oh, I thought you have a toothache because I thought I heard you crying!” Hahaha

My family also lived in the ancestral home but only for a year. When we left, I never saw him again. Many years had passed and we were reconnected with him. This time he had his own family. I don’t know what happened but we lost communication again. We would often hear about each other through my grandfather but we rarely saw each other. Two years ago, his wife died of a heart attack. I went to visit him and his kids at the wake of his wife. Since that time, we have been communicating a lot. In fact, we would see each other regularly because they came to me for dental treatment of his son, my cousin.

Late last year, he was complaining of migraine and frequent body pains. I told him to consult with the doctor. A month after, I was alarmed by his significant weight loss. He said it was probably because of the stress in his business. Soon after I received a text message from him stating he has a tumor in his liver. He never mentioned the severity of his condition. He didn’t want to let anyone know about his condition because he didn’t want them to worry. Cancer has taken over his liver and his lungs. Until he could no longer bear the pain and passed this afternoon at the hospital with his father, his children, half brothers and sister beside him.

I would like to believe that he accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior when we led him to pray the prayer of acceptance or the sinner’s prayer. God’s ways are higher than our ways. He has His own timetable. Though still very young, it was already his time according to his creator.