VLOG: THIS IS WHAT A FULL DAY IN CHURCH LOOKS LIKE

Saturday is usually ministry day for me, except if I have trips, workshops to attend/teach or events to host. Our leaders’ meeting for our Bible Study Fellowship evening women’s class in Ortigas is held Saturday mornings at 6:30. We prepare for class night, have separate leadership development sessions and we get to engage in God’s Word by sharing in the discussion questions and homiletics.

*Thanks to my fellow GL Riva for taking and sharing these photos!

For this particular Saturday, we had our leaders’ fellowship (we do this once a month) so we had time to catch-up and enjoy delicious finger food. 🙂

Following immediately was the launch of S.H.E., the support group for single young professional women in GCF. We invited blogger, speaker and homeschooling advocate Joy Tan-chi Mendoza to speak. She happens to be the niece of Tita Mina, one of the core members of the GCF Ortigas Women’s Ministry team. She brought along all five of her children, who she says are always with her and Edric (her husband) whenever they have speaking engagements.

Joy spoke on Identity: The P’s of God’s Best Life for You (Colossians 3:1-17):
1) Know your Purpose
2) Obey His Principles
3) Order Your Priorities
4) Elevate Him with Your Pursuits and Passions
5) Discover His Pleasure and Peace

Sorry if the bullet points are bitin. I tried to take down notes but I was busy making sure the camera was running well and we were still within the allotted time. The ladies looked forward to the QandA session where Joy answered questions about singlehood, homeschooling her kids, growing up, her background, married life and faith. Watch the VLOG below for more!

After the launch, I had a bit of a break so I changed to more comfy clothes. Youth worship followed at 5pm and then we also had the Youth Leaders Mentoring Session facilitated by Kuya Ave Gaspar. He taught us how to use the Precepts material for our discipleship meetings. Precepts is in-depth Bible study which challenges you to delve deep into God’s Word without the use of commentaries. You focus only on the Bible and let it speak to you as you break down the passages and do word studies.

I realized I’ve already written too much. 🙂 Go watch the VLOG below and make sure you SUBSCRIBE and give it a thumbs up! Thanks and God bless you!

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Vegan/Vegetarian-Friendly Place: Happy Garden Cafe

A few VLOGs ago, I told you that I switched to the plant-based diet as recommended by my doctor due to a lump that grew out of nowhere. While I am out of danger (thankfully), it’s been tough adjusting to the lifestyle change. I’ve always loved vegetables; I’ve never had a problem with my greens and fruits. However, I also love my flavored fries (hello Potato Corner), my Chicken Joy from Jollibee and ugh… CHIPS. The cheesy ones in particular. So imagine my dilemma when I was told that I cannot eat any of those. I can’t even have dairy. Good-bye cheese platter.

So for the past three months, I’ve just been having a lot of the greens, mushrooms, root crops and my daily barley supplement. The weight loss has been very obvious to the point that people have expressed concern over it. I’m okay, I’m fine. It’s just that I don’t have meat. And dairy. And processed food. And pancit canton from Lucky Me. 😦 It’s also been tough not having a lot of restaurant or fast food options. The only vegetarian “fast food” I know is Bodhi at Megamall (because they serve halal food) and Go Salads and Pho Bac near GCF. This diet change meant I’d have to always prepare my food, source the ingredients and cook them myself.

One evening after seminary classes, Dave and I went looking for a good place to eat that serves vegan/vegetarian-friendly food. Since we end our class at 9pm, most of the ones we checked out were already closed. Happy Garden Cafe along Jupiter Street was the only one that opened til late so we decided to check it out. Watch the vlog below:

THE S.P.E.C.K. BIBLE STUDY METHOD

Sometimes, the simplest Bible study methods bring forth the most enriching one-on-one meetings with the Lord. I have been using the SPECS/SPECK method for about two years now and even if I’ve been going through BSF, inductive study and homiletics, this method never fails to let God’s Word speak where and when I need it most. SPECS/SPECK is an acrononym for:

S Sin/s to avoid S Sin/s to avoid
P Promise/s to claim P Promise/s to claim
E Example/s to follow E Example/s to follow
C Command/s to obey C Command/s to obey
S Stumbling blocks (or others use Significant Truth) K Knowledge about God

When you are studying a verse (better yet, a passage) during your quiet time, try using this method and as always, begin with prayer—ask God to speak to you through His Word. If there are sins you need to be confronted with, if there are examples you need to follow in your own life. Be open to the Holy Spirit’s leading. At times, personal Bible study can bring about discomfort and in my experience, that usually means that there is something being challenged in me—an area of compromise, a sin I need to confess and repent from or it could be a challenge to obey and trust Him more.

My passage for today is 1 Kings 11, which talks about Solomon’s downward spiral because he allowed himself to be led astray by his pagan wives. Imagine, the man deemed the wisest king of Israel, backsliding because of the compromises he allowed into his life? My initial reading of the passage made me notice the compromises he made:

  •      Idolatry
  •      Intermarriage for political alliances
  •      Trusting in these alliances instead of depending on God
  •      Infidelity to the Lord
  •      Not using the godly wisdom made available to him to make wise, God-glorifying choices

Now let’s use the SPECK method:

SINS TO AVOID

  •      Solomon intermarried with nations God prohibited (a clear act of disobedience)
  •      Solomon loved many (foreign) women
  •      Solomon let his wives lead him astray
  •      His heart turned after other gods (infidelity)
  •      His heart was not FULLY DEVOTED TO THE LORD HIS GOD
  •      Idolatry
  •      Did evil in the eyes of the Lord
  •      Did not follow the Lord COMPLETELY

PROMISES TO CLAIM

I don’t want to claim these promises as mine. Although I know that the Lord has many promises in the Bible for those who put their faith in Him, we also have to be aware that some promises in the Bible are given to SPECIFIC PEOPLE MENTIONED in the narrative. Say for example, we cannot claim the promise given to Abraham “I will make you the Father of many nations.” That promise was SPECIFICALLY given to him.

In this passage, I see God fulfilling His promises on the account of David, even if Solomon spiraled downward.

  •      There were still two tribes left for David
  •      Solomon reigned until his death
  •      Rehoboam (Solomon’s son) succeeded him as king

Promises to Jeroboam:

If you do whatever I command you and obey, do what is right in my eyes, I will build an enduring dynasty, I will give Israel to you.

EXAMPLES TO FOLLOW

  •      Despite David’s sins, God remembered him and thought of him dearly because he was after God’s heart
  •      David obeyed God’s commands and decrees (v. 34-36)

COMMANDS TO OBEY

Walk in obedience, do what is right in My (God’s) eyes, obey My (God’s) decrees and commands as David did

KNOWLEDGE ABOUT GOD

  •      The Lord remembers and rewards the faithfulness of his servants (David)
  •      The Lord was still very gracious to Solomon (on the account of David) despite his disobedience and idolatry and did not take the kingdom away from him
  •      The Lord appeared to Solomon TWICE. MINDBLOWN. So Solomon had THAT PRIVILEGE, yet he still went astray.
  •      The Lord can raise up LEADERS AND ADVERSARIES. Jeroboam did not have Solomon’s noble birth, yet God made him a king. God can thward systems that have been put into place just because HE IS GOD, HE IS SOVEREIGN AND HIS PLANS WILL PREVAIL.
  •      The Lord is MERCIFUL. He could have killed Solomon or punished him severely but the guy still reigned until his death. I wonder if Solomon ever repented when he was faced with his adversaries. Did he call out to God?

PRAYER: Lord, I pray that you would always remind me to rely on you and not on my own strength and capabilities. Seek my heart Lord, and see any offensive way in me. Bring to mind compromises that I need to confess and repent from. Help me to JOYFULLY OBEY YOUR COMMANDS, to be FAITHFUL and like David, RUN AFTER YOUR HEART. Amen.

 

FLUSHING 25L OF WATER UP MY COLON

Eeep! Doesn’t the thought just make you cringe? It was my first time to try out colonic hydrotherapy at The Zen Institute at Tomas Morato. Fast facts to answer your already brewing questions:

WHAT IS COLONIC HYDROTHERAPY?

Clean, distilled water is flushed into your colon through a pipe which goes up your anus. This loosens and flushes out the plaque that forms in the walls (especially the corners) of your big intestines.

WHAT DOES IT FEEL LIKE?

First off, the pipe going up my anus was one of the weirdest cringe-worthy sensations I have ever felt in my entire life. Once the water fills your colon, you begin to feel the urge to poop. Ms. Aiza my nurse attendant, told me that I simply just had to let go, like I would regularly do during bowel movement.

HOW LONG IS THE PROCESS?

The 25L of water took 45 minutes to finish. You have to make sure you excrete all the water in your colon so you may feel the need to still sit in the toilet even if the pipe is removed from you.

HOW OFTEN CAN I DO IT?

Some do colonic hydrotherapy every week (because they want to lose weight) but it is recommended that you do it once or twice a month. It helps keep the colon healthy and can help prevent infection and polyp growth.

Now, go and watch me cringe, get nervous and talk through the whole process:


 

After the session was done, I was told to eat light. No meat, nothing too difficult to digest but yeah… I COULD EAT! I was so hungry after the whole process but I loved the fact that my tummy was smaller and I felt so much lighter. Now you’re probably asking how does this aid in weight loss? It helps clean out your system from the inside so that you can better absorb the nutrients from what you eat and you don’t feel sluggish. Of course it’s best to partner this with a healthy, fibre-rich diet + exercise.

I can feel that your next question would be HOW MUCH DOES THIS COST? IS IT WORTH IT?

There are different packages suited for a person’s needs. Say for example, you’d like to manage your weight but have no time for exercise, they put together procedures for you  so you can still achieve your weight goals. The same goes for those who want to manage their weight but are able to commit to regular exercise. Wellness and Weight Management sessions usually start at P5,000 (depending on the procedure or service) while package treatment prices start at P25,000. If you want to save up, it would be worth looking into the Zen Institute Membership Card priced at P5,000 for Silver or P10,000 for Gold. Membership allows you to enjoy benefits worth P50,000-100,000 for one whole year.

For inquiries, you may call or visit any of The Zen Institute branches:

Bonifacio Global City Branch (Fort)

G/F Bonifacio Technology Center

31st Street corner 2nd Avenue

Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

Tel. Nos: (+632) 856-2027 to 28

Mobile: 0917-502-7701

Quezon City Branch

No.69 Scout Rallos Street

Tomas Morato, Quezon City

Tel. Nos: (+632) 441-1712/ 412-2528

Mobile: 0917-5328992

Batangas Branch

St. Frances Cabrini Medical Center,

Maharlika Highway, Brgy. 2

Sto. Tomas, Batangas

Mobile. Nos: (+63917) 5146513

(+63917) 5319533

Binondo Branch (SOON TO OPEN)

2/F Downtown Center Building,

Quintin Paredes St.,

Binondo Manila

Facebook: TheZenInstituteMedicalSpa | Twitter & Instagram: @TheZenInstitute

http://www.thezeninstitute.com | marketing@thezeninstitute.com

Princess Impressions While Driving

If you live in Manila, it goes without saying that the terrible traffic is no stranger to you. On a non-traffic day, it would usually just take me 30 minutes from my place in Makati to Ortigas. On a regular traffic day, that 10-kilometer stretch would take an hour and a half to two hours. Imagine my frustration when it took two hours from Magallanes to the Ayala Tunnel and another two hours from there until Ortigas. It was so strange because it didn’t rain that day, I left at 2pm, there were no road closures or whatever and when I checked Waze, there weren’t any accidents on my route at least.

On regular traffic days, I usually prepare my playlist of songs so I can do my vocalisation and practice in the car. It does work–I mean I get to entertain myself. But during that four hour stretch, naubos playlist ko. Pati Podcasts ko played na lahat, nasa traffic pa din ako. 😦 Anyway, here’s one of them random driving days when I thought of doing Princess impressions. Enjoy!

I KNOW MARIAN RIVERA’S SECRET

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The mere mention of “Marian Rivera” brings to mind words like “queen,” “beauty,” “a charmed life” and FLOWERS. Marian has never shied away from expressing her love for anything floral, even launching her very own flower arrangement business called Flora Vida. That of course, is just one of the many things on her bustling schedule as a wife to Ding Dong, mother to Zia and a sought-after actress and endorser. A lot are probably wondering how she was able to bounce back so fast after giving birth. Turns out, Marian is still very strict with her health and beauty regimen. Even if she’s gone back to work and still performs her duties as wife and mother at home, she makes sure that she still gets to take care of herself.

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On July 27, 2017, Marian Rivera was officially introduced as the face of Snow Crystal White Beauty, a beauty supplement that fights free radicals, reduces the signs of skin aging and evens out the skin tone. In a sit-down interview during the event, Marian revealed:

Secret #1: She can skip sunblock now. Anyone who has experienced the intense Philippine heat knows that skipping sunblock is a definite no-no, so how can she NOT wear that now? Snow Crystal White Tomato has 800mg of Colorless Carotenoids (Phytofloral) derived from a unique breed of white tomatoes. It is clinically proven to deliver significant benefits such as evening out of skin tone, whitening and the increasing ability to defend itself against UVA and UVB rays. It also has 500mg Kohjin L-Glutathione, which helps repair skin and fight free radicals.

Secret #2: Though she was always told she’d make it as a movie star, Marian always wanted to become a teacher.

There’s actually more in the video, so instead of me writing verbatim, I’d rather that you listen to the snippets straight from her. 🙂 Enjoy!

[WATCH] BROWS AND LIPTINT AFTERCARE AND HEALING

How exactly do you care for your newly-tattooed brows and lips?

#1 Rule is to not get both areas wet for at least 24 hours.

That means, you cannot swim, wash or heavily sweat right after your procedure. Why? You want to protect your brows and lips from infection. They will give you an antibiotic and other aftercare ointments. For the brows I had to apply the antibiotic ointment for two days. For the lips, I had to put the cream on for 7 days. And no, you cannot use lip color while your lips are healing. Get a better idea of the aftercare in the video. I detail everything here:


Special thanks to Doc Susan & Blair Ong. Visit the BGC branch of Pretty Looks @ the 2nd Floor, Uptown Parade Mall

[WATCH] PERMANENT BROWS AND LIPTINT AT PRETTY LOOKS

In this video I take you through my S3 Eyebrow Stranding & Cherry Blossom Lip Tint procedure at Pretty Looks Uptown Mall. 🙂 Although I already had my eyebrows done last year, the pigment eventually faded (virgin brows, to blame?) so I’m glad I was able to have it done again by Pretty Looks.

Decades ago, getting your eyebrows tattooed was something you wouldn’t openly discuss with anyone. The dead giveaway would be when your brows begin to turn gray, dark green or bluish. Today, people are more open about permanent make-up, especially now that #EyeBrowsOnFleek is a huge trend globally. Still, we have to admit that not everyone has all the time in the morning to draw on the perfect arch. Over the years, there’s been great improvement on both the eyebrow tattoo technique and the pigments used by aestheticians. With the modern formulation, you no longer have to worry about your brows turning into an unsightly, artificial color and the stranding techniques mimic the look of real brow hair.

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Really happy with how hair-like it turned out! I may be smiling here but the anesthesia was starting to wear off. So I was feeling the sting.

The whole brow procedure was done in 45 minutes. Blair was so gentle during the entire procedure, it was virtually painless. She would often ask me if I was feeling okay and I appreciate that she truly cares for her clients.

After my brows, Tita Susan began working on my liptint!

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Again, I may be smiling here but really couldn’t feel my lips. I was a bit fearful that I would feel the needle but I’m grateful that the procedure went on smoothly. The aftercare is another story.

Watch the VLOG below to get a better idea of both procedures. I’ll post another video about the aftercare and what the brows and lips look like within 5 days.