Archive for February, 2010

(Photograph by Franco Advincula)

It was my charming little nephew’s 5th birthday yesterday and his mom and dad decided to bring him (and us!) to an oceanarium! Much to my delight, observing the various sea animals and plants under water was such a soothing experience! Not to mention watching the world-famous sunset by the bay at dinner time, and feeling the cool breeze on our faces as we listened to the waves gently rushed to shore. A calming, peaceful moment for me indeed!

I thought it was amazing how those schools of fish coexist in enormous aquariums—practically dwarfing the tourists coming in—swimming around for many hours without bumping into each other! Aside from the colorful fishes, I enjoyed the corals, starfishes, sharks, eels, and the scuba diver! Nyahaha! 🙂

There was an interesting pair that caught our fancy. It was a stingray swimming all over the place with another kind of regular-looking fish swimming directly under it at the same speed—as if they were two friends playing and protecting each other from the rest of the sea world—although they were apparently too different. There was some sort of rhythm and order under water that I found not only mysterious, but elegant as well. No doubt a living proof of an Omnipotent Creator who oversees those beautiful, magnificent creatures!

As we sat in the middle of the aquarium tunnel gazing at the lovely aquatic animals above and around us, I thought of what similarities those fishes have with human beings in terms of striving to coexist peacefully without figuratively bumping into each other. How we, as human beings, have our own goals and aspirations in life and in trying to reach them might have to specifically divert our paths to avoid clashing with other people’s course.

There are times when doing this becomes difficult, especially when lives are mingled with those we care about and conflicts arise due to differing opinions. But then again, another major difference that we have with the fishes is that we are thinking creatures and are thus capable of evaluating situations in an intelligent manner.

It’s a relief to be reminded that the measure of our existence goes way beyond just being baked, grilled, fried, or broiled at the end of the day. It entails even much more than being showcased within the confines of a massive oceanarium. And if we are to reach our divine potential, I guess we must follow the example of the stingray and its friend. Because in order to survive, one essential thing we must learn is to coexist amicably with other human creatures on this habitat—no matter if they are starfish-like, shark-like, eel-like, or in alien form such as the scuba diver!! 🙂


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(Photograph by Edwin Redrino)

Oh, it’s the love month!!! So I really wanted to post something about l’amour that goes beyond just the romance, yummy chocolates, and the lovely roses!! 🙂 But I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, until I attended a funeral service tonight.

It was for a father who passed away a few days ago leaving his four young children behind. One could see and almost feel the burden placed upon his eldest daughter’s shoulders. But the girl was calm and strong for her younger siblings during this very difficult time. At her tender age of 14, she was holding up pretty well and displayed a strong character amidst the crisis and their uncertain future.

But what touched me most was the story told of how much this father loved his children and the sacrifices he had made to make them feel the love that he had for them. Despite their youth, his children acknowledged his efforts and declared that if there was one thing they would remember of him, it was that he loved them so dearly. It was to me a great example of pure and devoted love!!!

In this day and age when some people’s hearts are “waxing cold” (see Matt. 24:12), and other people tend to always seek that which is only convenient, it is refreshing to know that true and unconditional love still exists in the hearts of many!! That there are those whose hearts are still capable of producing so much goodness in this world; and that good still triumphs over evil.

There is this one love that defines the utmost display of unconditional affection. The love of all loves! It is the love of our Father and our Savior Jesus Christ for all of us—saints and sinners. It defies human intellect and comprehension. It transcends all kinds of pain and sorrow. It heals all wounds and encompasses all kinds of boundaries. It is the love that allows you and me to experience divine redeeming amidst our greatest follies and frailties. It is a love that is steady and constant. A love that is always available for our taking, if we only reach out.

May we all feel of His absolute love for us, at this time and all year round. May we strive to possess even an iota of this kind of love in our hearts for as the scriptures say, “Whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him” (see Moroni 7:47).

Keep lovin’ everybody!!! 🙂

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This day marks the second year since this blogger posted her first scribbling on this blog site now known as “Riches of Eternity.” How time flies!!!

Needless to say, the experience has been very rewarding—with the many wonderful readers I have met in person and online, and all the lessons we’ve learned from each other’s thoughts and teachings. This has been an amazing cyberspace journey I didn’t expect to last. But it did. And for that I am most grateful.

I am thankful for the privilege to share my thoughts through the pages of this blog; for the lessons I have learned from each of the experiences and testimonies you’ve shared; for the Spirit that touched our lives through the written words; for those who have encouraged and inspired me to write and to keep writing; for my friends who have let me use their photos of God’s creations that graced each of my blog entries; for your comments and visits; and basically for all your constant support. THANK YOU SOOO VERY MUCH!!! 🙂

I strongly believe that we should celebrate life and all its exciting milestones!! From the simplest first steps of a little child, or a blooming plant inside the bathroom, or a pound of weight lost after dieting for a week, to the more complicated ones as reaching the sixth month since starting a friendship with someone who turns out to be our best friend!!! 🙂

Whatever it is that you are commemorating today, come and celebrate with me!!! 🙂


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(Photograph by Eunice Ruth Barilea)

I am not even a good singer, but I courageously joined the choir that will be singing for our stake conference on the first weekend of March. I find that singing hymns with other people who can actually sing 🙂 invites the Spirit. The experience gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling—something that I can never trade for anything else in this world!! 🙂

I love the words of one of the hymns we will be singing. It goes:

Have I done any good in the world today?

Have I helped anyone in need?

Have I cheered up the sad, made someone feel glad?

If not, I have failed indeed.

Has anyone’s burden been lighter today

because I was willing to share?

Have the sick and the weary been helped on their way?

When they needed my help, was I there?

Then wake up, and do something more

than dream of your mansion above.

Doing good is a pleasure, a joy beyond measure,

a blessing of duty and love.

(“Have I Done Any Good?” Hymns #223)

I watched part of the Grammy Awards yesterday and was touched by the song number of Andrea Bocelli accompanied by David Foster and a lady singer. They sang to raise funds for the Haiti people. It never stops to amaze me how generous people can be of their time and talents in order to extend help to the needy.

We don’t have to be excellent singers or musicians such as them to make our own contribution to society and the community we live in. In our own little ways, we can do something good in the world today. Be it helping an old lady cross the street, visiting people who are sick and lonely, or offering rides to people when they need it—no matter if they’re our friends or foes!

I think the hymn says it all. Nothing compares to the happiness that comes to those who do good towards their fellow beings. It is a Christ-like attribute worthy of emulation which pleases our Father, and consequently obtains great blessings from above. 🙂

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