In 1999, I received the hardest task given to me by my parents…that’s to go home alone to the Philippines and finish my last two years in High School. Most of my life was lived in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. My family, friends and even my knowledge of Christianity was established in the Middle East. Leaving everything behind and starting a new was not an easy task for a 14 year old. I may have the physique of a 30 year old but still an emotional quotient of a frail boy.
Being reminded of Ephesians 6:1, I obeyed my parents, even if I have to suppress my dismay and feeling of unfairness. On April 1999, my family and I flew back to the motherland. It was my last international flight. I psyched myself into accepting the reality that one month from that point in time; I will be left alone by my parents. The thought of separation was the most painful thing. Thousands of miles from your loved ones on a different time zone were more of a torture than a challenge.
Two years have passed, God granted me to graduate from High School. No honors but a true graduate none the less. 16 years old was the ideal age for my generation to enter college. I applied in UP, UST, MAPUA, LA SALLE and LETRAN. I was on fire. But that fire was quickly distinguished when all my applications were denied. Running low on confidence, I thought of just taking a short vocational course, convinced that my mental capacity can only handle only two more years of studying. But then, a friend told me to try La Salle top…not taft…but top…top of the mountain! La Salle Dasmariñas offered Computer Science (which was the in thing then). So I took the entrance test, and lo and behold, I was accepted. I was placed in Section 1 of BS Computer Science year 1. But my stay in that university was cut short because of financial matters. I only finished 1 year.
At 17, I decided to work. We had a small food stall in the Sucat area near the City Hall. So I helped out every morning, delivering food, washing the dishes, cooking big kalderos of rice, and packing up. I followed the same routine everyday for almost 4 months when an opportunity opened for me in School of Tomorrow, Philippines.
To summarize everything, 2002 I entered Living Heritage Academy as a database encoder under Mrs. Kakilala. In 2005, God gave me the opportunity to discover my hidden talent in graphics design. By 2007, my skills were enhanced, by God’s grace, from print design to video editing. 2008, a personal bump in my career and spiritual life lead me to resign from School of Tomorrow and work for a secular company. Higher pay was guaranteed but it was hard to ignore God’s tug on my heart back to my first love which is Christian Education and doctrinal teaching. 2009, I answered God’s call and went back to School of Tomorrow. Now, God has blessed me with the opportunity to show His grace to everyone through Multimedia Arts.
Looking back, it’s hard not to see God’s sovereignty in each important life changing situation. I hope and pray that your story would reflect God’s character and integrity. After all, we Christians are the light of the world, a city that is set on a hill that can never be hidden. And when people would see that light, they should not see us but instead glorify our Father Who is on heaven.