book review, Jesus, Soul, Spirit

Is anything worth more than your soul?

Passion for Excellence vs. Passion for Power
From Max Lucado – The Applause of Heaven

“The desire to be excellent is a gift from God, much needed in society. It is characterized by respect for quality and a yearning to use God’s gifts in a way that pleases him.”

“…there are certain things you can do that no one else can. Perhaps, it is parenting, or constructing homes, or encouraging the discouraged. There are things that only you can do, and you are alive to do them. In the great orchestra we call life, you have an instrument and a song, and you owe it to God to play them both sublimely.”

“But there is a canyon of difference between doing your best to glorify God and doing whatever it takes to glorify yourself. The quest for excellence is a mark of maturity. The quest for power is childish.”

“Absolute power is unreachable. The pole to the top is greasy, and the ladder rungs are made of cardboard. When you stand at the top – if there is a top – the only way to go is down. And the decent is painful.”

“A thousand years from now, will it matter what title the world gave you? No, but it will make a literal hell of a difference whose child you are.”

“I guess when you’re a king, you don’t have to worry about being proper for the sake of status. You already have all you need. That goes for children of the King too.”
Matt 16:26
“And what do you benefit f you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?”

Body, Jesus, love, Soul, Spirit

Lessons from the SPERM and the EGG.

Lessons from the SPERM and the EGG.

“Salamat po sa Mama at Papa ko. Kung hindi po dahil sa egg cell at sperm cell nila. Hindi ako mabubuo.” That was the legendary speech of a biology student during her debut. Yes, that former BIO student was me. I didn’t intend to make anyone laugh during that night. I wanted my speech to be dramatic. I was DEAD SERIOUS when I acknowledged the fact that my Mom and Dad provided the cells which made me. 🙂 But after those words came out of my mouth, my family and friends laughed so hard that I was able to find those thoughts quite amusing too.

I happen to remember that moment when I was on my way to work this morning. I was reflecting on my current life status in terms of my career, my family life, my love life, relationship with others, ministry and spiritual life. It is quite amazing that I learned something from the sperm and the egg, that I wanted to share it with everybody.

Of course we all know that the SPERM comes from the guys and the EGG comes from girls. This is not bastos, it’s BIOLOGY. 🙂 So, let’s review how a baby is formed…

 

MOM and DAD make love (I love the term!).

 

[Disclaimer: I still believe and do adhere the purity of sex, and that it should be done only by married couples. Primarily because their commitment is for a lifetime. Hence, they only share themselves with one person for the rest of their life which minimizes the possibility of STDs and Broken Homes.]

 

There is a point in the love sessions that DAD sends a LOVE FLUID to MOM. This fluid contains a group of Sperm Cells searching for their ONE TRUE LOVE – the EGG. It is here our story begins, in the sperm’s pursuit of the egg. ^__^

Once MOM receive the LOVE FLUID from DAD, the little sperm cells in it starts swimming and finding the one (sometimes 2) egg cell awaiting her prince charming. But you know, usually there is only ONE SPERM CELL that can fertilize the ONE EGG CELL. How does it do that? We learn from Biology that there are millions of sperm cells swimming in the LOVE FLUID. According to some, it can contain up to 500 million sperm cells. TALK ABOUT COMPETITION! After these tiny SPERM CELLS reach MOM’s body, there are many obstacles that hamper them to go directly to the egg. It seems to me that it is like a test, a selection process wherein only the best remains… the best partner for MOM’s EGG CELL.

 

OBSTACLE 1

According to Tamar L. Goulet, Ph.D., the distance a sperm travels to be united with an egg is apporximately 6inches or 15 cm long. however, given the size of the SPERM that distance means 3,750 times the length of itself. That’s a long way to go don’t you think? But the determined little sperm cells… pursuing their princess.. continues to swim to meet her.

 

OBSTACLE 2

Dr. Goulet also notes that the place where MOM receive the SPERM is not very friendly. But because of the LOVE FLUID that DAD gives, it becomes a little friendlier. Oh Yes, DAD helps his little SPERM to reach MOM’s EGG.

 

OBSTACLE 3

Another obstacle proven by SCIENCE is the CERVIX. The Cervix is part a of MOM that comes after the receiving area. More like the gate of the EGG’s palace. The MUCUS or sticky fluid of the cervix does not allow abnormally shaped sperms to pass. One professor in the US that I’ve read about states that the LOVE FLUID contains many abnormally shaped SPERM. These are the not-so-good-kind. So, at this point they are eliminated from the love competition. Hence, a better chance for MOM’s EGG to meet her REAL PRINCE.

 

OBSTACLE 4

Miley Cyrus’ song “The CLIMB” can be the theme song of the sperm at one point. After surviving the cervix, the SPERMS need to climb up to the fallopian tubes through the UTERUS.  The Uterus is like the area of the castle after the gate, while the Fallopian Tube is the Castle itself, a passageway that leads to the Princess Chambers.

In the uterus, many sperms die while climbing. Dr. Goulet narrated that only a few thousand survives. (They were a MILLION not long ago). Also, there are 2 fallopian tubes, meaning two passageways and only one leads to the princess chambers. Some SPERM goes the wrong way and gets defeated. But there are a few with the GREAT LOVE INSTINCT that goes to the right path.. ang tamang daan! By this time, the surviving eggs are only a few hundred.

 

THE ARRIVAL

According to Dr. Goulet again, SPERMS during their whole journey transforms. The SPERM that started the journey is not the same cell that completes it. He grows more and more into the type of SPERM CELL that can fertilize or be one with the egg cell.

He and Dr. Thomas states:

Throughout this journey, the sperm are undergoing a drastic transformation. Freshly ejaculated sperm are incapable of fertilizing an egg. The newbie sperm must go through a process called “capacitation” within the female body. Chemicals in the sperm’s head change or are removed, and the sperm’s tail movement increases. “These steps help the sperm mature and render them able to fertilize an egg,” explains Dr. Thomas.

Once the obstacles make him who he needs to be, the SPERMS then try to find the PRINCESS in her CHAMBERS. The waiting princess goes out of her room and meets the sperms in the passageway. Many of the remaining sperms tries to win her heart. BUT ONLY ONE MAKES IT! 🙂

 

LESSONS:

 

a. WAIT.

Hebrews 6:15 (NIV)

And so after waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.

We can see in the story that the egg cell does not nothing but wait until she hears the tail-steps of the sperms. it is the only time she does some action. There are some points in our lives when all we can do is wait. Waiting for the promotion in your job or waiting for the right partner are just one of the few waiting period we encounter. we can see that after the EGG waited, the ONE she was waiting for CAME. So let us not Fret, our God is faithful!

 

b. PERSEVERE.

I CORINTHIANS 9: 24-27

24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

The SPERMS knew their prize, and the price for them to win it. But, they endured every obstacle, and gave it their all regardless of the possibility of rejection , death or hopelessness. Are you in a situation that you are running towards your dream.. a dream of being the best in your profession, a dream of establishing a better ministry for the Lord, a dream of being deeper in knowledge and love of God, a dream of being recognized by your family, a dream of sharing your life with someone special? THEN RUN YOUR RACE. ENDURE THE TRAINING. GET THE CROWN. KNOW YOUR AIM. LET YOURSELF NOT BE DISQUALIFIED, even in the midst of temptations.

 

c.  TRANSFORM

 2 Corinthians 4:16 – 18

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

The SPERMS transformed during the process of pursuing their dream. They transformed for the better. Hence, we must also do so during times of trials and obstacles in our lives. We must strive to be better – to be renewed day by day. Your troubles has an end. Your pursuit has a goal. Fix your eyes on GOD that gives you the strength to endure. Fix your eyes on JESUS who did not give up on you. 🙂 This is the greatest motivation for an eternal goal of being the best for His glory, and making Him Lord of your life. 🙂

 

—-

Levi Grace Ambon is a social worker. aspiring photographer/writer/blogger. bookworm. traveler. chubbier. 🙂 A princess for she is a daughter of the Lord of Lords and King of Kings.

Body, love, Soul

Because Dreams Come True.

Do you remember the days when you were young.. when life was bliss and the days are care free? This picture reminds me so much about a time where fairy tales are real. Prince Charming is coming… and I am a REAL princess.

 

As we grow up, we fall down and get hurt. We get rejected. We are left alone.. broken… wondering what is wrong with us. Our first heartbreak – romantic or not – becomes the alarm clock of life. The sound that rings and wakes us into reality.

 

It can come in many form. Maybe your father left you. Maybe your Mom was a drunkard. Maybe you were abused. Maybe you were not loved by that guy you wish to share your life with. The alarm clock of life comes in different times, in different kinds..

 

But despite that, we should never give up. We should never lose hope. Like balloons, our dreams may never fly forever.. but seeing one fly even for a moment gives us that magical feeling that flying is possible.

 

so Dream.

Body, Jesus, love, Soul, Spirit

Heaven sends its love.

While I was on my way to Nueva Ecija today, I captured an unusual cloud in the sky. This past week, NCR, Southern and Central Luzon was very much affected by the continuous rain and subsequent flood. But, the photo was a very uplifting sight.. It feels like God reminding me.. us… that He loves us. We might suffer much from this fallen world.. But He will forever send His Love!

 

Praises unto JESUS!