True Love Still Waits

My sister is finally married! It was nothing short of amazing and glorious and I thank the Lord for what He had set that day. At the age of 27, she married her first and last boyfriend. That’s right. Her first and last.

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Truth be told, my sister is an impulsive type. What she wants, she wants to get it right away. I think that’s part of her dominant personality. But despite that personality in her, there was one thing that she made sure to wait for–the man she would spend the rest of her life with.

In our generation today, everything is instant already even in relationships. Ever heard of instant boyfriend/girlfriend? But looking at my sister’s story, I can say that the line “true love waits” is still very much alive even at this time.

True love waits for the right timing. Actually, no one will be able to tell the exact and right timing in finding love. Only God knows that. But we have to understand that right timing requires being patient. More often than not, we jump into relationships without considering the moment. That’s why a lot of people would say that they met someone but just at the wrong time.

My sister waited patiently for the right time. She had a couple of suitors back when she was still studying but she knew that it was just not the right time to be in a relationship yet. School was a top priority, not love life. And this brings us to the second point.

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True love waits for the right season. It’s so important to know the season we are in. If you’re still a student, your season is about being a student. If you’re trying to get a job, then perhaps your season is getting your career started. There is a right season for everything (Ecclesiastes 3:1)–season of being single, getting married, starting a family and the list goes on.

My sister met her  husband at a season in her life that she considered fitting already to engage in a relationship. She was already a nurse then and so was her husband. She was ready for it. And I think that’s how God wants us to be–to be prepared by Him spiritually, emotionally, financially, mentally and physically.

True love waits for the right person. The thing is, right timing and right season will not make sense if you don’t have the right person. You can be at a season for marriage but if you are with the wrong person, it’s never going to be easy. There is no secret formula to finding the one. That is why we need God’s leading in this area. I have actually written about this already and you can check it here.

I know we all want things to be fast. But may we remember to exclude love with that because waiting for true love has not gone out of style.

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This Is Why I Proposed

Hey guys! I’m taking the backseat for this post as my now fiancé, Coco, is going to be taking over. As many already know, we got engaged last February and it was such a memorable day for us. And after almost 3 months, here he is sharing to you all his thoughts.qqq

Hey there! This is Coco and I finally proposed to Charm after 1 year and 7 months of being together. You might ask, “Isn’t that a little too fast?” Well, it looks like it but I can give you three out of the many reasons on why I finally decided to pop the question to my then girlfriend now fiancée.

Actually, there are several reasons including my love and admiration for her. But what I want to share right now are not just mere reasons but lessons I’ve learned along the way as a man pursuing a woman. For starters, proposing to Charm has a lot to do with how I see my parent’s relationship. 

 Growing up, I’ve seen the love and affection my parents shared with each other and for me that’s a blessing that I will always be thankful for. Maybe at times, like any other couple, they also have misunderstandings, but primarily, I have seen their relationship being strong. In fact, they just recently celebrated their 27th anniversary! For that reason, one of my “#relationshipgoals” is to have a relationship with my future wife somewhat same as theirs.

And so, packed with inspiration from my parents and of course, right timing and a confirmation from God, I knelt down on one knee to ask Charm to marry me because:

I want a relationship with a purpose. Guys, if you are now in a relationship or if you are still pursuing a girl, ask yourself this question, “Why am I dating or pursuing her?” Maybe some of you would answer “I’m just in love” or “I am bored being single” or “for curiosity’s sake.” Some might even just date to try out as many girls as they can. But real men do not do that, only immature boys do. Real men protect the dignity of women.

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I’m not saying I’m clean and perfect in this area. I had my share of  pursuing with a wrong heart and a wrong purpose during my boyhood. At some point, we all had the wrong intentions in the past. But the good news is that we can still change to be the real man that God wants us to be. If we’re dating already, then it means that we are no longer young boys!

2 Timothy 2:22 says, “Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.”

God wants us to be real men, and real men pursue a woman with the intent of getting married. If marriage is not the goal, then there is no sense in getting into a relationship. Real men have a relationship goal to marry and not just play games with her.

To all the ladies out there, if someone is pursuing you or you are dating someone, make sure to ask him, “Why are you pursuing me?” “What direction are we going to?” If the purpose is shallow, you know what to do.

I’ve found a wonderful woman. Men, we all want it, right? A wonderful woman to spend the rest of our lives with. But how do we really define a wonderful woman? Some may define it as Liza Soberano while some may say Pia Wurtzbach. Well, whoever they define it as, I define it as Charmaine Montes. Yihee! (haha)

Ladies, you are all wonderful (read Psalm 139:14). But nothing is more wonderful than a woman who is secured in Jesus. A wonderful woman is someone who  does not define herself with what others see on her–make-up, body, clothes, etc. She does not let her past define her and she doesn’t take self-pity because she knows that she is made and loved by a King. Also, a wonderful woman for me is someone who is still secure without a man because she knows her worth.

Men, I know, I know. We hope of marrying a woman who has the physical beauty and all but honestly, that’s actually just a bonus. The main deal is when you know her heart is set for Jesus first. My encouragement is that as men, have a relationship goal of finding a wonderful woman who seeks her identity from Christ rather than from the opinion of others. Where to find her? Pray for it, bro.

We’re on the same page. Being on the same page together–sharing the same values, beliefs, goals and principles in life–was a real deal for me. I knew that if I’m going to marry someone, it would have to be someone whom I can walk with along a journey with Jesus at the center. I believe that if the couple has an intimate relationship with Jesus, all the ultimate relationship goals will just follow.

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A relationship with Jesus as the foundation may sound too “churchy” but nothing beats a God-centered union. When two people both understand the love of Jesus, loving each other would be easier. I’m not saying that it’s going to be perfect but Mark 10:9 says, “What God has joined together, let no one separate.”

Actually, without Jesus at the center of our lives, none of the ideal relationships that we could think of would be possible.

 

 

3 Bridal Shower Tips

My older sister is getting married in a few days and I’m actually quite excited as this is the biggest festivity in the family yet. But as you all know, before the big day, there’s always the bridal shower first to celebrate the last few days of the bride’s singlehood.

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We did an early shower for my sister last month and I’m actually happy to say that though it was nothing very grand, everyone had fun especially the bride. As the maid of honor, I never realized how daunting organizing can be but I’m so glad we were able to pull it all off. So, if you’re a maid of honor or perhaps the friend in charge in putting together a bridal shower, here are three tips I can share to you:

Pick a theme. My sister requested a dressy and heels night so I thought of the theme “Beauty” to match with it. There are several ideas you can go for—I’m thinking Boho Chic, Masquerade, Lingerie Night (for the daring ones *wink), Spring Tea Party, Hawaiian & BBQ and the list goes on. You can also pick a color scheme and from there you can plan on.

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Pack the party with games. This will depend on how far you can prepare but the key is to make sure everyone will have a chance to have fun—in short, everyone must be involved! In my opinion, the best one we did was the “Best Gown Ever” game wherein three teams created a masterpiece dress out from tissue paper. There are so many game ideas available online but we did simple ones which were “How Well Do You Know the Bride,” “Scrambled Words,” and “Charades.”

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Pinterest is your best friend. For all your design, game and whatnot needs, the good old site will be there for you. If you want to go all out, Pinterest has awesome ideas. If you just want to keep things simple, you can always improvise. You can also check out Google for extra ideas.

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Here’s my Bridal Shower outfit of the night—a print on print ensemble. It may look like a one piece but they are actually two pieces of clothing that are just match made in heaven. .

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Can’t wait to blog about the actual day. Countdown is one week from now! ❤

Single Is Not Equal To Ugly

Hello beautiful single ladies!

I hope you had a blast celebrating LOVE day because I sure did! I went on an eat-all-you-can sushi buffet at Ramen Yah with the bf/bff and we were so stuffed I thought I promised not to eat sushi for a month after (but of course, that promise is all gone now that I’m hungry again).

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Anyway, I hope that whether with or without a date, you had looked your best last Sunday. Not because you’re trying to impress someone or you’re on prey mode (say what?) but because you know that single is not equal to ugly. What am I trying to say here?

Well, have you ever had that notion wherein as a single lady, you just don’t care with how you look? You don’t give a care because you’re not trying to impress anybody anyway. Perhaps you have a firm confidence that you are beautiful no matter what. If you are that person, let me say that your notion is very right.

Inner Beauty > Outward Beauty

It’s true that we should never try to impress people with our looks. It’s also true that we need to believe that we are beautiful no matter what others say because that’s what God says about us. He said that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made..” and His “works are wonderful.” He also said in His Word that:

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” (1 Peter 3:3,4)

It means that inner beauty is still the most important thing no matter how cliche it sounds. Outward beauty can never surpass a beautiful heart especially one that is aligned with God’s.

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One becomes greatly beautiful on the outside regardless of flaws because the beauty on the inside is radiating through. And the thing is, we can never find this kind of security anywhere else except in Jesus.

Inner Beauty + Outward Beauty = Desirable

But does this mean that it’s okay to not care about our physical looks? I don’t think so. We also need to do our part. Just like what Michelle McKinney Hammond wrote on her book titled “What To Do Until Love Finds You”:

“A lady-in-waiting should always look the part whether a knight is in sight or not. After all, you never know when he’ll appear. And when  he does, spiritual plus beautiful equals highly desirable.”

I wish I can write down the whole chapter of the book here because there are so much things that I wanted you to read but since that’s obviously impossible, I urge you to grab a copy of the book and read the entire thing. I promise you won’t regret it.

So what now?

There are several ways that we can do to look after our physical appearance and it varies from one woman to another. The important thing is that we never lose the willingness to fight the good fight of personal upkeep. So, here are few of the ways I think we can do to keep our outward appearance on fleek. *wink*

EXPLORING THE WORLD OF MAKEUP. Don’t get me wrong. I still believe that natural beauty is better. But let’s be realistic and admit that makeup is almost every woman’s weapon against stressful nights, haggard days and archenemy pimples and breakouts! If you’re not into all those cosmetic stuff, I understand because I too sometimes have no idea!

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But get your basics on (read: eyebrows, blush, foundation, lipstick) and you’re good to go. Don’t be afraid to explore! Also, I bet my sisters out there would agree that MAKEUP is FUN! The key is not to overdo it and to remember that your identity is not in how good you look with it

KEEPING IT HEALTHY. Okay, I’m guilty with this one. I don’t have a healthy lifestyle and I’m not proud of it. But once in a while, I do try. Sometimes, I go to the gym to get me some exercise. I try to control my eating habits.

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I try to eat healthy. I try to sleep early…okay…I fail at that most of the time…but the point is, do something to stay healthy! Feeling good on the outside should start with feeling good on the inside and sometimes that’s all it takes. I better start living on this one too.

PAMPER & BEAUTY TIME. When was your last salon visit? When was the last time you had your nails done? When was the last time you visited the spa? I know this can be expensive but once in a while (if you have the budget), treat yourself to some pamper and beauty time. Or if you think you can DIY, why not? Don’t let the busyness and stress of the world drain out the beauty in you.

PASSION FOR FASHION. Well, not really passion. I just wrote that because it rhymes and I personally think that the way we dress up plays an important factor in our overall look. The truth about fashion is that it’s a personal thing so it should never make you look like you’re dressing up as someone else.

But try doing a wardrobe check and see if you ought to need a wardrobe update. I’m not saying throw out all your clothes and buy new ones (although you can actually do that if you have loads of money. lol). Just try experimenting or exploring according to your style and preferences. And if you need help, there are thousands of sources out there that you can turn to for reference.

Here’s a good news:

I’m going to hold a giveaway and it’s going to be a collaboration with my fashion blogger friend Katrin Lapeña of Katwinvasion and Iligan’s most trusted fashion online shop Xina Maldita by Sheena Prete. Fashion pieces are at stake so stay tuned for the official giveaway announcement.

Until then, stay beautiful ladies! ❤

 

 

 

 

The Beautiful Single Life

 

I’m a little late in welcoming the second month of the year because I’ve been so busy but nonetheless, hello February! This month is such a perfect excuse to go all out in writing about love and relationships so before we reach the 29th of February, that’s what I’m going to do.

And first on my list:  Talk about the beautiful single life.

As you all know, Valentine’s Day is coming up and I’m sensing that there are some single ladies out there who are sighing because they are currently “zero” in the “love life” area. Some may be even worried that they won’t receive anything. If you are that person, I’m going to tell you this–Stop it!

I’m not making you stop because it’s cheesy or corny or pitiful but because I want you to understand that singlehood is a very beautiful season and February 14 is just a day that will go by so quickly.

THE SINGLE LIFE STAGE

There is so much to love about being single and it will take a whole book if I’m going to write everything down. But just remember that this particular stage in life is a time that you can never get back once you get married or have children. Bye-bye to freedom, to I-can-do-whatever-I-want moments, to staying up late, to spending 90% of your budget to food, clothes and makeup, to making own decisions–you know what I mean. In short, “When the spouse doesn’t exist, you can’t hurt them with your selfless, impulsive decisions.” (Marshal Segal)

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I’m not putting a bad light on marriage here as if it is a scary place. Of course, not! It’s a beautiful season on its own as well. I dream to get married soon but I recently realized that before that day comes, I want to be able to maximize my single life–you know, the feeling of no big commitment to someone else yet.

And even if I am in a relationship right now to an awesome man, I consider myself single by papers and before God. That’s why I don’t want to act “wife” to him yet because that’s not a role I am called to do already. I am technically still single and I love embracing that fact. At this point, I want to savor every moment of the single life stage.

THANKING GOD FOR THIS SEASON

The truth is, sometimes I get impatient and try to ask God to let me move on to the next season already. But I realize that I have got to hit on the brakes! If I spend lots of time thinking so much about marriage, I might miss the good things in my current season.

I’m not saying that it’s wrong to think about getting married and all. In fact, we should be praying about it as early as possible if we desire so. But I realized that where I am right now is a season that God has placed in my life to revel in and enjoy. Before, I say “I can’t wait to get married!” Right now, I’m praying, “Lord, thank you for this season of waiting. Let me enjoy this moment while preparing me at the same time for the next one.”

I read in one of Rica Peralejo’s blog post that “each season is beautiful and purposeful.” I couldn’t agree more.

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And at times I get impatient, I go back to the word in Ecclesiastes 3:1:

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens…”

If you are single, do not fret and do not rush. The Word says, “Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:34)

If you have been waiting for Mr. Right for so long already, do not worry. Use the time to reflect and be aware of how God is moving in this time of your life. God has a purpose for you in your current season. Find it out and embrace it.

If you are in a relationship with someone but not married yet, enjoy the season but at the same time treasure the person that God has blessed you with.

If you are dateless this coming Feb. 14, no problem, it’s going to be on a Sunday. Have your date with God in church. :p

How Well Do You Know Your Lover?

Many don’t know this one but Coco and I had known known each other since were 13. We met at a common friend’s birthday party. But apart from his name, I knew nothing about him. We were barely friends.

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Fast forward to the day he first asked me out, I looked at him with so much curiosity. Who is this guy? What’s his personality? What are his likes (aside from me…hehe)? What are his passions and interests? What does he hate? What makes him mad?

There were so much to learn and know about him. Until now, I’m discovering new things about him every day, whether we are apart or together. Some things about him surprise me while some make me mad. Some make me happy, others make me think twice. No, just kidding. Each day that goes by allows me to know him better than yesterday.

It somehow reminds me with my relationship with God for the last five years. You see, I also met Him when I was still young. I can’t remember what age specifically but growing up in a Christian home, it’s impossible not to know Him. However, it was pretty superficial on my side. I knew Him alright but I did not have a relationship with Him and there’s a notable difference between the two.

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It was only until 2012 that I decided to jump off my own boat and plunge into the waters to pursue on a new life that is led by Him. I started involving myself with people who can help me grow in my faith. It wasn’t an easy one though because there were times that I failed. But as I kept going and continued reading His word, the more I got know who God really is.

I learned a more intimate perspective of His personality like how loving and kind He is. Yeah, everyone knows that. But if you soak yourself with His word, you will see it differently. His love will not merely be just a knowledge but an intimate understanding—a marker of your personal relationship with Him.

One time I was feeling down and unloved, I came upon this verse in Isaiah 54: 10.

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I was blown away! Who could love like such? I tell you, that’s not the only verse declaring God’s love for you! (Go ahead, be excited and open that bible!)

Every single day, every situation, every moment, every circumstance—bad or good—I learn something new about who God is. His hates, dislikes, passion (just so you know, YOU are His passion). And His promises! Oh men! You seriously got to check out His promises! I learned the kind of father that He is, how He is as a best friend, and most of all, who He is as a lover.

So, how well do you know your Lover? It’s not too late to come to know God in a more personal way.

Ladies, Don’t Give It All Just Yet!

Being in a relationship with someone is a beautiful thing. But if we don’t accompany it with wisdom, it may lead us to making wrong decisions and may even become the cause of our own downfall. That is why, ladies, unless you are married to the person you are in a relationship with, don’t give it all just yet!

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This does not mean that you give love and care halfheartedly. It only means that since you are still not tied together by marriage, it’s important that you put boundaries in your relationship. There are certain couple privileges that can only be attained within the bounds of marriage. Let’s not try to make our own rules.

Get to know each other better

The stage that you are in is basically the time to get to know each other better.

  • That’s the time you stir up each other with nothing other than conversations about interests, goals, dreams and life stories.
  • If you have just known each other, it’s the perfect time to catch up on the big and small things that has happened in your life.
  • It’s the time you spend getting to know each other’s family and friends.
  • It’s the time of discovering each other’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as random things that you could think of saying or joking about.
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Personally, I think this stage is just a wonderful one. It’s in these times that you create moments together as singles.

Respecting each other’s privacy

Just because you are in a relationship, doesn’t mean that you have to share everything and constantly be together. A lot of relationships end up down the drain because of “suffocation” or too much control that it sometimes end up being unhealthy. It’s best to respect each other’s privacy while you are both single as it promotes more love and trust with each other.

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WIFE, submit yourself to your husband.

I hope you noticed the emphasis on the word wife right there. Sometimes we tend to be that woman who gives it all. We tend to be that woman who plays a role that we are not even called to do yet. Unless he has already put a ring on it, don’t be a wife. Save it for the real thing.

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By the way, this whole submission thing to your husband is pretty controversial so that’s going to be another whole new post if ever I do get to it (although I don’t think it will be any time soon since I’m not a wife yet!).

Seek individually.

Praying together is a great thing to do together. But while we are still in the process of waiting for God’s perfect timing, it is best to seek God individually. It is best to hear more from what God has to say. Just because you are already in a relationship, doesn’t mean you should stop seeking Him about it. No. All the more that you should seek.

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Saving the best for the right time.

In every relationship, touch is essential. In fact, touch is therapeutic. But while we show love by our touch, it’s important to remember to never cross the line or better yet, don’t even think of going there.

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There are certain things that we need to save for marriage and yes, I’m talking about sex. The world calls “saving yourself” for marriage old-fashioned but the Word says otherwise. This is not about the pride of being a virgin on the night of your honeymoon. It’s about honoring God with your body, obeying Him because you love Him. When you wait for the right time, you reap its rewards. There is glory in waiting! #trueLovewaits

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Do you think this is way too ideal? Well, I think so too. But by the grace of God, this is possible. It is possible to to put up these boundaries in our relationship. It is possible to love and respect your partner by God’s standards. It is possible to remain pure while waiting. It is possible not to give it all just yet!