Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Term of Endearment

My sister has three daughters whose ages are two years apart from each other. When they were younger, my sister was fond of calling each one of her girls as "anak". "Anak" is a Filipino term of endearment that means "child". Any Filipino mother naturally calls her child with that term of endearment. One of my sister's daughters noticed her habit and was quite confused. So one day she asked, "Mama, why do you keep on calling us "anak" when we have our own names?"

At that time, my niece could still not understand the connotation of the term "anak". The term suggests affection and intimacy, a close relationship enjoyed with no other. As a mother myself, I understand why my sister called her daughters "anak". But I also understand my niece's juvenile point of view. She knows that she is called by her name in the same way her sisters also have their own names.

God calls "child" anyone who accepts His Son Jesus Christ as his Savior and Lord. John 1:12 says, "Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God." And even if there are billions of people in the world, God knows the name of each one of us. What a blessing to realize that God calls me dearly as His child and will never forget my name or yours.

Photo courtesy of Jesus Our Abundant Life Church

Sunday, August 4, 2013

A Better Recognition

The following incident happened when I was new with freelance writing. I remember excitedly browsing through the new magazine of which I was a regular contributor. I was writing a variety column and science feature articles so I was puzzled when I didn't see my name in the editorial box of that magazine's particular issue. But I noticed the name of a new writer listed along with the other contributors. How could they forget my name? I was hurt, disappointed, and angry.

It took a while for my anger to simmer down later that day. Something I read calmed me down. "Do not think of yourself more highly than you should. Instead, be modest in your thinking, and judge yourself according to the amount of faith that God has given you" (Romans 12:3). 

I wanted my name to appear in the list of contributors because I wanted recognition for what I had written. It was right for me to expect it since I was part of the writer's pool. But I was taught through this incident to give more attention on improving my writing. So I took the challenge and worked hard on improving my writing craft. Later on, the editor of the same magazine told me that an article I wrote helped her gain perspective on how to cope with a crisis in the office. I felt it was a recognition better than seeing my name on print and I experienced a greater pleasure knowing how a piece I wrote helped someone.