Friday, July 27, 2012

Hello AR!

You never miss to visit me every once in a while huh?! I am impressed. I can't deny how much impact you made on me everytime you're around. I can't hide it. My eyes won't let me. My body does not conspire. I should admit. You got the best out of me. Ugh! I hate it.

Look what you've done to me.

The watery eyes and "full" feeling of my head is overwhelming. You have no idea how awkward it is to sneeze endlessly in my cube while I'm trying to suppress the involuntary reflex of air discharge. The feeling of biting my lips and holding my head up high inside MRT and shuttle so I won't sneeze and spread the virus. :(

To make things worst, you always manage to get in the way in most of my beach escapades even if you are not invited! You and your allergens!

Enough for this rant. In the brighter side, there is also one thing I learned from you. To be hopeful. To be excited for the morning to come. Hoping that my frail body will have a good night sleep to be able to recover. Hoping that you will surrender during the night and be gone when I wake up the next day. You gave me something to look forward to. Can you believe that!

Although I am doomed to deal with you occasionally, I know now how to beat you.

A doze of sleep and a good rest. Booyah!


Just an Ordinary Story


Hearing life's testimony of other people before, gave me the impression that my testimony was something uninteresting and nothing extraordinary. Until God made me realize that my life is not about My story but His story of greatness, love and grace revealed through me.

* * * * *

I was born to a Christian mother who consistently bring us(me and my siblings) to Sunday school, Vacation Bible School and retreats every summer. During my younger years, I've heard bible stories and the gospel several times. I knew that Jesus died for my sins. I knew. I just knew. But I didn't understand enough. I knew that Jesus died on the cross but I didn't grasp the power of the cross and how it should impact my life as a believer. I remember, genuinely accepting Jesus as my Savior countless times. But every time I commit a huge sin, I felt that I'm no longer worthy of God's love thus separates me from His love. As soon as I realize my mistakes I repent and accept Him again.

Growing up I wanted to believed that I wasn't a bad person at least compared to others - I obey my parents, does household chores, takes care of my siblings, excel in my studies and even go to church every Sunday. Pretty clean life. I even consider myself an independent, tough person, rarely asking help from others and solving problems on my own.

After I graduated in college, I had a prompting to give back to our church through service. I prayed and was lead to volunteer in Sunday school as a teacher. I was okay with the Lord, at least I thought, I read the bible, attend services and serve Him in the ministry. In my Christian walk, I consider myself a "lone ranger" Christian, I was never comfortable in discipleship.

My principle: Nothing really matters as long as I'm okay with the Lord, in my world there's only Him and I.

For a few years, this 'lone ranger' setup seems working for me, but after some time I grew tired of serving Him maybe because I was trying to work things out on my own strength. I felt that I was consumed by my Christian routines and ministry work that I overlooked my personal relationship with Him which I never intended to happen, I just caught myself drowning in this situation. There seems to be no way out.

This time I seek God and asked Him to direct my path, I acknowledged that I can't do all things on my own anymore just like how I've been trying to live my life before.

By 2009, God led me to a group of ladies who desire to grow in love with the Lord. I was blessed how they spend time with God, read their bible and fellowship with other ladies. In this group I met a beautiful lady, inside and out who cared enough to mentor and disciple me. I find friends who encourage me with their stories, struggles and devotion to Jesus. Sisters who make time to be there when I need someone to talk to. Companions who listen to my grumblings and frustrations in life but graciously reminds me to pray and ask what God is trying to teach me in those times.

Then on I understand better, only by the grace of God. One by one my misconceptions growing up was unfolded before my very eyes.

First, that Jesus died in the cross only once, that when we accept Him as our personal Saviour, our sins are forgiven - past, present and future...

Second, that God is a Holy God, and for Him a small sin is still a sin and that I'm no better than others...

Third, that He is more concern with our relationship to Jesus Christ more than our ministry and other church activities, I find more peace and joy now every time I pray to Him...

Fourth, that we are not meant to be alone in our Christian journey, God appoints leaders to disciple us, people to grow with us in Christ, people that encourages us to persevere in faith, people who will not condemn us but graciously corrects us when we are in sin...

Lastly, that accepting help from other people is not always a sign of weakness, but sometimes an opportunity for others to bless you.

My story may not be as extravagant as the others, but God meets us, every.single.one.of.us personally and intentionally even in the simplest things of life. Our adventures despite its simplicity or complexity, can be used by God so we could minister to others with the same story and ultimately marvel in His power at work in everyone's life.

I am still a work in progress, my story may need some rewrite or editing in the future. But I am and will always be infinitely grateful to God. For His patience with me. For not giving up on me. For persistently changing me to be the person He wants me to be. As I continue to rest in His promise,
And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.             --Philippians 1:6 (NLT)
I am Girlie Abad Mangalo, just a simple girl with an ordinary life living for an extraordinary God!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Earth Day, EveryDay at Exist!

I've always liked the shades of GREEN. Okay I love green. Not only because in software automation testing it is the color for a passing test script. Yey! Green also mirror a restful color (for me). Green symbolizes growth and new life. Finally green radiates the energy of Mother Nature (so calming).

Recently our company just launched Exist Green IT initiative entitled, "Do You Have a Green Mind?" with the following objectives:

- To make Exist a greener place of work by putting value on caring for Mother Nature
- To optimize our operational costs relative to power, water, bandwidth, paper and supplies
- To create our Corporate Social Responsibility initiative by starting a movement of responsible consumers from within our Team



In line with this campaign, they've organize a group of people called Eco-Friends that would meet together to plan for activities to make this in motion. 

Exciting.

Every campaign's success begins with awareness. Knowing where we are, what we want to achieve and what steps we need to do. So is true with Green IT. We need to be aware with the life cycle of things we use around us. Here's a visual way of understanding this:


Being conscious on what happens when we throw away our garbage - straw, cigarette butt, lunch styrofoam, plastics spoon and fork - gives us a second thought of whether we should cast it in the trash bag or find a way to make it more useful.

Enough for the awareness drive it's time to make Green Action! I've listed here initially 7 tips where you [I] can personally do our share in our own little way at the office:

1. Bring your own mug and utensils (spoon and fork)
Save one paper cup a day. Save one pair of plastic spoon and fork each meal. Simple yet one lasting legacy. 

2. Say "No" to plastics
Whenever I buy something from the bookstore, grocery especially one or two small items, I ask the bagger not to put it in plastic anymore, I just place it inside my bag.

3. Turn off computer, laptop, printer before leaving the office
And please don't forget to unplug the machine and the chargers as well. 

4. Walk more
Walking alone gives you 3 benefits already. Good for your health. Save money. Reduce air pollution from riding vehicles.

5. Make it a habit to carry along your Exist eco-friendly bag
Bring your Exist bag with you when planning to go shopping or do grocery errands. It's not only handy and economical. I also find its black color chic.


6. Proper garbage segregation
Segregating biodegradables and non-biodegradable could be a tough task if done in the dump sites with tons and tons of garbage. But if it starts at the tip of our fingers, the moment we throw that one single litter in the right bin. Life could be easier. I believe.

7. Spread the word!
Share information through sessions, blogs and social media sites to raise awareness and encourage your friends and colleagues how they could be part of the program.

More than awareness and providing lists of do's and don't, caring for Mother Earth is a lifestyle not just in the office, but also - at home, at the streets, at the mall and basically wherever we are. 

We would be glad to hear your thoughts on this.

Together. Let us all think, live and breath Green!


Monday, July 16, 2012

Ten Things I Know To Be True

Yet another post to archive in my "Sarah Kay" madness portfolio. Here's my version of  "Ten Things I Know to be True"

1. It will rain when it have to, when it should be.
Few days ago, I had one of my fiercest battle with the heavy burst of rain, just in time when I step out of the shuttle going home. The sudden downpour not to mention the forceful wind blast, screw me dashing in the ankle-high flood with my crippled umbrella. I realized rain as dominant as it is, will pour whenever, wherever it wants, whether we have umbrella or not, whether we're wearing our new polished shoes or just slippers, whether we feel gloomy or happy, whether we like it or not. That instead of grumbling it's more comforting to just accept that it rains because someone, something, somewhere needs it more than our inconvenience.

2. An infrastructure's height is proportional to its foundation
I don't need to be an engineer to know that foundation is relative to an architecture's altitude. Similar to any other relationship - friends, boyfriend-girlfriend, marriage, family - the ones who build their relationship with strong fundamentals of trust, respect, forgiveness and genuine love have bigger chances of soaring high to experience and enjoy their loved ones to the fullest.

3. Google is your friend
With all the information, technologies and news right beyond one click of "Go" and "Search" in the internet, who would argue that Google is indeed the best friend of today and the future. I like Google search user-interface's simplicity - white background, Google logo, input textbox and search button. Simplicity at its finest. But behind this plain page lies a limitless magnitude of facts. The best part is many of us could enjoy this application for free, students, teachers and professors, accountants, programmers, doctors, basically all people who knows how to use computers.

4. Great people leave
Christopher Columbus, Sir Isaac Newton, Charles Dickens, Dora (hehe Dora talaga). All these great people leave and go places to explore land, discover culture, meet new people and learn more about life. Who knows that great person could be you, one day. You will leave home, friends and family to pursue greater ambitions. Yes it will be hard at first, but in the other side of the spectrum lies the possibility of knowing yourself better and making your dream come true.

5. Family is never our preference, never was, never will.
We never get to choose to whom we will be born, our siblings, our lineage, even parents are not given super power to pick out their little rascals. Family is not a bet we can settle on, do mini-mini-mini-moo, under probationary period or trial and error. It is an intrinsic design for every person, a personal gift to you and me, hence making it more exciting, challenging and more authentic. Why? Because we are stretched to accept the people placed in our lives beyond our capacity to love, understand and forgive. In this sense I must commend parents, especially the moms on how they unconditionally embrace the whole being of their child in holistic way.

6. Proper sleep is beneficial
As we all love to sleep, I consider this as one of my "ME" time remedy, my "Elixir of Life" a practical and handy tip to deal with stress and restore balance of life. I must confess, I am a sleep addict / sleep bug. I normally enjoy 8-10 hours of sleep on regular work days and felt good about it. Please don't ask me about sleeptime on weekends, I have record of sleeping for 14 hours during one of my weekends at home, mind that I am healthy with no sickness at that time. Unfortunately, while studies after studies have been carried out to demonstrate that proper sleep promotes physical health, longevity and well-being of a person, there are still people who deprive themselves from a good night sleep and its benefits.

7. Ladies are practical artists
Make-up artists to be exact. Their talent is impressive perhaps because they practice it almost anywhere, anytime - when they wake-up in the morning, after taking a bath, before and after a sumptuous dinner, while seating in the bus or public utility vehicles(puvs), standing inside MRT can you believe that? For the record, I'm not trying to sound pro-vanity here in fact I am not a makeup buff, I am content with putting on face moisturizer and plain lip balm on a daily routine. But I never hide my admiration to girls who use cosmetics for their advantage. Clever!

8. Cinderella married a prince to become a princess
While Cinderella needed to marry a prince to become a princess, I learned in the book "Captivating" by  John & Staci Eldredge that each girl, lady or woman, every single one of us is God's princesses :) That our Heavenly Father who is the King of kings value us for we are royalties in His eyes. Isn't that amazing?! Just as earthly father who wants to provide and protect his daughters, our Father is more than willing to bless us, all we need to do is accept Him in our hearts and abide in Him.

9. Leadership is not about position 
Leadership is more than power but more of responsibility. As Winston Churchill once said,
"The price of greatness is responsibility."
For me a good leader doesn't just deliver but inspires his people to reach their best potentials. The good news is anyone could be a leader in his own right. You could inspire your friends, classmate, colleagues and family.
"Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it." --Dwight D. Eisenhower
10. We are created by Someone greater
If a person tells me that a priceless, elegant watch was created after one big blast and boom! We now have a Rolex watch! That was insane! No doubt! My logical brain rationalizes how in the world is a complex watch be formed by one sublime explosion, with all its wheels, bridge and screws? Impossible! There must be someone who created the watch. Ergo for human beings and the universe. For our bodies are more intricate than any creation in this world not to mention the ineffable universe that never fails to amaze me.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Exist Outing @Batangas, 2012

June 8-9, 2012 @Sabangan Beach Resort, San Juan, Laiya Batangas.
T'was supposed to be a free day overnight outing with Exist rock stars. No games, no activities, no pressure, no competition, yey!

But guess what made this event more fun and worth the tan lines and sunburn?

Swimming

Kayaking

Frisbee

Volleyball

Beer Pong

Open Mic Karaoke

Photoshoots!

Foood!!!
Who would say we don't have much activities?! :) But seriously even taking out all these activities, it would still leave us the one simple reason that made this 'pleasure trip' a priceless beachcapade...  also the same reason why Exist exists :) 


You got it! Simply the people of Exist!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Eclipse

"Sarah Kay" syndrome made me recover this old poem  I made few years ago from my file chest... One of my treasures from the past.

* * * * * *

I could be the moon,
     if you will be my sun.
Separated by space,
     but the universe conspires us to be one.
I may not be seen in the day,
     but in the darkness you will find.

You may not catch me all the time,
     but in the sky I'll stay to guide.
My body may change every season,
     but my heart and soul remains the same.

Though I know our paths will never meet,
     I will patiently wait for that blissful fleet.
A rare phenomenon when people are drawn,
     to gaze and calm with a shoulder to lean on.
I will savor the moment when our trails will cross
     united by your light, spectacular in all its form.

--Author: Girlie Mangalo



Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Paulo Coelho: The Alchemist

Sold more than 65 million copies in more than 160 countries. How's that? I couldn't brag more about it, all I know is that I felt extremely grateful to be part of the statistics. If I'm to choose words to best describe this international bestseller, that would be intentional and inspiring.

The Alchemist is a fable about a shepherd boy named Santiago but is referred to as "the boy" throughout the book, who once live a simple life shepherding his sheeps until he meet the King of Salem who is about to change his life for a challenge of finding his treasure. In his journey springs his unending adventures of being robbed in a foreign country, working for a crystal merchant, meeting an Englishman, travelling through the desert, finding his one true love in the oasis, meeting the Alchemist, learning to communicate with his heart and with the Soul of the World and finally finding his treasure.

Definitely a book of courage to walk way from what you're used to, to leave your comfort zones with the hope of finding your treasure. A book that presents fear of the unknown, suffering and failure in a diverse way. A book that touches change in all its feature. A book of finding love in places we don't expect it to be. A book of knowing one's heart by learning to listen, speak and not to be deceived by it. A book of understanding the wonder of life, its adventure, meaning and its boundless potential.

A novel that keeps me excited to read more but upset in the idea that I would soon reach the last page. The Alchemist taught me to relish on every eloquent notation made by the author. Here's a list of the quotes I intentionally want to submerge myself.

*****

It was my fear of failure that first kept me from attempting the Master work.

Usually the threat of death makes people a lot more aware of their lives.

No matter what he does every person on earth plays a central role in the history of the world. And normally he doesn't know it.

There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.

The darkest hour of the night came just before the dawn.

The fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a second's encounter with God and with eternity.

Before this, I always looked to the desert with longing. Now it will be with hope.

Wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure.

Everyday was there to be lived or to mark one's departure from this world. 

The language that everyone on earth is capable of understanding in their heart. It was love. Something older than humanity, more ancient than the desert. Something that exerted the same force whenever two pair of eyes met, as had theirs here at the well.

Because I don't live in either my past or my future. I'm interested only in the present. If you can concentrate always in the present, you'll be a happy man. You'll see that there is life in the desert, that there are stars in the heavers, and that tribesmen fight because they are part of the human race. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we're living right now.

People need not to fear the unknown if they are capable of achieving what they need and want.

Making a decision was only the beginning of things. When someone makes a decision, he is really diving into a strong current that will carry him to places he had never dreamed of when he first made the decision.

Every blessing ignored becomes a curse.

I'm afraid that if my dream is realized, I'll have no reason to go on living.

There was a moment of silence so profound that it seemed the city was asleep.

When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.

If you start out by promising what you don't even have yet, you'll lose your desire to work toward getting it.

To realize one's destiny is a person's only real obligation.

That at a certain point in our lives, we lose control of what's happening to us and our lives become controlled by fate. That's the world's greatest lie.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Perspective

If you look at yourself... you will be depressed.
If you look at other people... you will feel senseless.
If you look at your problems... you will be stressed.
If you look at your life... you will feel restless.
If you look at the government... you will be oppressed.
If you look at money and riches... you will be obsessed.
If you look at the evil ways ... you will be possessed.

But if you look at the mountains and the trees... 
If you look at the vast ocean and the seas... 
Finally if you look at Thee... you'll not only be impressed, you will progress to be the best and you will be blessed! :)

--Author: Girlie Mangalo

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Love is Like

Inspired by Sarah Kay and Phil Kaye's "When Love Arrives" spoken poetry this is my first attempt to write an online post about LOVE. I don't know why I'm doing this, but maybe, just maybe I don't want to forget how love looks like, its expectations and realities.

* * * * * *

Love is like a blank canvass. Enticing vast possibility of the artist's greatness that will not be realize until the painter makes the first stroke. First glance, first smile, first attempt to say "Hi."

Love is like a traffic light. There's a time to go, pursue, chase your love story and fight for what your heart have to say; a time to stop, to whisper the words "goodbye," to walk away as silent tears form diamonds in your eye; and a time to wait, to rest in the assurance that one day he will come to sweep you off your feet and tell him "you are worth the wait."

Love is like an eye wear. It helps you see life clearer and appreciate its colors. Few lucky ones, already find their pair of eyeglasses with accurate lens prescription that fits them perfectly. Others endure the wrong glasses. Some are still looking around to find theirs. While others doesn't need one.

Love is like a piece of heaven here on earth but remember that it can also drag you to hell.

Love makes you eat vegetables your tongue didn't dare.
Makes you wear skirt and high heels your feet cannot bear.
Love makes you brush your teeth three times a day.
Makes you spray that perfume scent in case you bump him at the cafe.

--Author: Girlie Mangalo


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Write On!

Listening to Sarah Kay, an exceptional vibrant poet, is a breath of fresh air to me. Her performances brought me back to my teenage years when life is more simpler (oops that's double comparative and I can exaggerate on that) when my only responsibility is to do well in school, finish household chores, go to church on Sundays and write poems.

Yes! I find comfort every time I jumble words to rhyme, get a feel of affinity in the way I grip my pen and how it touches the surface of a blank paper to form letters and words. There's a seed of satisfaction growing through me once I finished writing, even though I know it's a masterpiece made known only for me and my notebook.

During these years, I scribble about almost anything - weather, tree, life, God, my family, boyfriend. Haha I can't believe I said that. I miss the times when my mind just wander around just like a bird who never gets tired of spreading his wings to fly, effortlessly navigates the sky and was never afraid as to where the wind may lead him by.


Sarah didn't just revive my love to poetry, she reminded me of my one true love. And though I never seriously taught about this, if there's one job I'd be willing to do for a lifetime and money is not an object... I see me writing :) in my room, under the tree, at the beach, in front of a computer, on a mountain hill, beside him. How cool is that huh?! :)