The Men in My Life

I opened the CT scan result, read what was written there and I understood that my beloved father was very sick. So sick that I knew he wouldn’t be with us for a longer time. I buried my head on my car’s steering wheel and sobbed.

I’m like my father in some ways. We both have an eye and appreciation for art. In fact, my father was a fine artist. He worked on different surfaces and with different materials. He was good at everything he set his heart into creating. He was one who had great sensitivity; he felt deeply for the things that mattered. And he was a good storyteller. He communicated well.

But unlike me, he was naturally sweet and generous. He didn’t know how to hold back anything that he could share.

One day, I arrived in the hospital from a business meeting, and he laid there on the hospital bed, gaunt and weak, but he greeted me softly and asked, “Naning*, how did your meeting go?”

After New Year of 1999, after spending time with my sick father in our home in the province, I was back in Manila to attend to my fledgling business. One morning, my then-fiance (now my husband) Felix and I were preparing to travel back home to the province when I received a call from my sister informing me that our father had died, just moments before her call. Felix at once wrapped his strong arms around me and held me tight and rocked me until the sobbing subsided.

More than four years later – years that witnessed our happy wedding, the birth of our daughter, and later, our marriage that fell apart – the arms that held me then, still held me when I was shaking in fear due to anxiety attacks brought by my illness, after living a sinful life estranged from him. His strength and calm always stabilized me.

We received the Lord Jesus in our life. And my Savior who mightily came and snatched me from the enemy’s clutch, didn’t cast a single stone at me. His was all forgiveness and love and acceptance.

And it was what He put into my husband’s heart: forgiveness and love and acceptance.

In Him is a new life. I am forever grateful.

*Naning is an Ilocano endearment for a daughter.

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In Christ,

5 comments on “The Men in My Life

  1. Sis Fe says:

    Happy Father’s Day to your beloved husband Sis Rina. Thank you for sharing your memories about your Father. Through your site I just want to wish my Father a very Happy Father’s Day, to tell him that I love him so dearly and to thank him for all his sacrifices. Out of his meager income he was able to send us his offspring to school. These are my best memories of my father. During the wee hours, when I was around 4 or 5 years old, my father would open my mother’s ‘sari-sari’ store to serve coffee and ‘pandesal’ to around 10 men whose source of income is to catch fish or frogs on rainy days. Our store was 10 meters away from our house and unbeknowst to my father i would wake up, follow him and demand my version of coffee and pandesal. When I am sick he would buy me my favorite biscuit and cola. We would both glued our ears on our transistor to listen to the live broadcast of Toyota and Crispa game. My father is Jaworski’s #1 fan, i’ve learned to admire Jaworski because of my father. Or for hours discuss politics. I hope that God will give me the opportunity to reciprocate their kindness by being able to serve them when I decide to go back to our motherland.

    • RinaPeru says:

      Dear Sis. Fe,

      Thank you for sharing your happy memories with your father. Yes, it would be a lovely thing to be loving and caring for our aging parents. I wish I had done more for my father when he was still alive… Now, I’m doing that to my bel. mother, and to my children. Just last night in my praising time, I was begging the Lord to make me a good mother, to help me serve Him truly and sincerely by showing my love to others…

      God bless you always!

  2. Great reflection. I am missing my father today, also. God bless.

  3. Charlotte says:

    Thank you for sharing your heart once again. My dad died in 1998 and I still miss him. A father’s love is so important, but even more important is our Heavenly Father’s love. And that is available to everyone.

  4. Lisa Maria says:

    God has truly blessed you with a husband who loves you as Christ loves… I pray that God blesses him and your marriage. I also lost my father in 1999 due to prostate cancer. I pray that all the deceased fathers rest in peace in the bosom of our Lord. God Bless!

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