“Para kanino ka bumabangon”

I can still vividly remember that famous line from a commercial of a coffee product. What arouses (or excites?) us? What keeps us going? What keeps us on track and face the struggles of daily life with confidence and renewed courage? For whom are we sacrificing for? Why do I need to stay at home? Why?

Quarantine period in San Jose made me think again of what pushes me to continue even if everything is non-normal. I was taught during my college years to deal with stress and anxieties especially in the most difficult times. (Before I entered the seminary, I got a Psychology degree in a university in Bacolod.) I was taught that as  future psychologists, we will become “front liners” when these circumstances arise.

But, I find myself now empty handed.

There are moments which I feel that I am not motivated anymore to continue, moments that I feel irritated by the people I talk with, moments when I forget to thank God that my family and I are safe from the virus, and many more. Hence, questions arise and lack of motivation begins.

As I bring all these things in my prayer, I am reminded of the story of the two disciples in the road to Emmaus. They felt frustrated knowing that the Messiah they have hoped for was crucified. I think they too have questioned their motivations to pursue. Eventually, they decided to dwell in that frustration and go back to Emmaus. But along their journey, Jesus appeared and made their hearts burning again.

Perhaps, in my situation right now I am being invited to look into the recesses of my heart and see my experiences of Love – experiences that made God real to me.

It sounds absurd that while I worry about these things there are a lot of people out there who are wary on how they can survive the Enhanced Community Quarantine. Nonetheless, Jesus will only become real to me and to those who are wary of their situation when we start to own our feelings of frustrations there and then we can begin moving forward.

Nonetheless, Jesus will only become real to me and to those who are wary of their situation when we start to own our feelings of frustrations there and then we can begin moving forward.

I then realize, bumabangon ako kasi ako’y nagtitiwala. Bumbangon ako kasi ako’y may paniniwala. Bumabangon ako dahil sa pag asa at may patuloy na naniniwala.

I choose to go on because I know that there is a loving God who never gets tired of choosing me every day. If we are faithless, [God] remains faithful—for he cannot deny himself. (2 Timothy 2:13 NRSV)

True enough, we all have reasons why we wake up. It is always coming from something deep inside us which sometimes we can’t explain. There will always be hard or easy questions in life that can only be quenched if we are able to grasp or touch what we are really yearning for.

Ikaw, para kanino ka bumabangon?

*photo from hopewoodjd.com

Simon is a first year theology seminarian from San Jose Seminary. Hail from the Diocese of Bacolod

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