The story of creation

God created the dog and said, “sit by the door of your house and bark at everyone who comes in or walks by. I will give you a life span of 20 years.”

The dog replied, “that’s a long time to be barking. How about only ten years and I give you back the other ten?”

And God agreed.

Then God created the monkey and said, “entertain people, do tricks, and make them laugh. For this, I give you a life span of 20 years.”

The monkey said, “monkey tricks for 20 years? That’s a pretty long time to perform. How about I give you back the ten like the dog did?”

And God agreed.

Then God created the cow and said, “you must go into the field with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have calves and give milk to support the farmer’s family. For this I will give you a life span of 60 years!”

The cow said, “that’s a tough life you want for me for 60 years. How about 20 and I’ll give you back the other 40?”

And God agreed.

Then God created man.

“Eat, sleep, play, marry and enjoy your life! For this I will give you 20 years life span.”

But man said, “only 20? How can I possibly enjoy life with only 20 years? Give me my twenty, and I will take the 40 the cow gave back, the 10 the money returned and the 10 the dog gave up. That makes 80!”

And God, in all his grace and kindness agreed.

So my children, that is why for our first 20 years, we sleep, play and enjoy ourselves. For the next 40 years we slave in the sun to support our family. For the next 10 years we do monkey tricks to entertain our grandchildren. And for the last 10 years, we sit by the door and bark at everyone.

Life has now been explained to you.


Doubt. Fear. Loss.

They’re part of the baggages we carry in life. Oftentimes we pack too much in one suitcase that they become heavy burdens in our journey.

That’s why we need to depend on people who can make the travel much lighter. Friends and family who are true to you and who will help you – they matter.

Some of us go through situations so traumatic that the human mind is so scarred from recovering from it. We’re left incapacitated mentally, physically, and emotionally. While the human mind isn’t built to handle all these, we fight and persevere every single day. We literally survive life’s challenges.

But the greatest gift is having people who truly care for you, not because when you’re up there and they’re taking advantage of you, but because when you’re down for the count, they’re willing to help unpack your burden with you because of love.

Basil Valdez’s song entitled “Lift Up Your Hands”, has a chorus that resonates these “unpacking” moments.

Cast your burden upon me those who are heavily laden

Come to me all of you who are tired of carrying heavy loads

For the yoke I will give you easy and my burden is light

Come to me, and I will give you rest.

Feast or fast?

The last time that Ash Wednesday fell on Valentine’s Day was in 1945. This year, devout Catholics will need to rethink their meat steak dinners as an option as the occasion puts carnivorous cupids into a pause mode.

As an obligatory rite by the church, Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent and during mass ashes are imposed on our foreheads, reminding us that “from dust we come, to dust we shall return”.

There are two obligatory days of fasting and abstinence in the calendar for Catholics 18-59 years old – Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.

It’s a no brainer when choosing between between fasting or feasting because of our faith. The origins of Valentine’s Day are sketchy with various resources in history dating it back to ancient Roman celebration of spring festival on the 15th of February. When Christianity was introduced, it was moved to the 14th of February to celebrate a Christian martyr named Valentine.

Over the years, the celebration of Valentine’s Day has evolved to a highly commercialised one – brimming with the fancy trimmings of the expression of love through flowers, sweets and treats over candle lit dinners.

Ash Wednesday to the Christian community marks the start of the Lenten Season, a time for reflection and penitence. While the Lenten period technically simulates the 40 days of fasting of our Jesus Christ, the actually number is 46 calendar days because the church does not count Sundays as part of Lent.

Ash Wednesday reminds us that our lives are short and we must live it to the fullest in the service of God. That we are given the Lenten season to reflect on our lives and the road to repentance and forgiveness. It paves the way for Catholics to be reminded of our humanity, and the crosses that Jesus had to bear before dying for our sins on Good Friday.

It comes as a timely reminder where we reflect on our road in life. It is ironic that this is most relevant at this day and age where so much hypocrisy, traitors and Judases exist on behalf of political, economic, personal and religious agenda. Almost 2000 years ago, we crucified someone who came to bring us hope and love. Ash Wednesday is a reminder of the love of God to us, “for He gave his only son to save the world”.

Let’s stay on track with our faith. Hopefully we choose what is right over what is convenient or fun. On a positive note, it’s best to remember Ash Wednesday as our road to realizing the Good Fridays of our lives and the countdown to our Easter Sundays.

Oh by the way, you may find this blog handy, as the next years that Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day would collide are in 2024 and 2029.