Wednesday, December 6, 2017

On Living a Dream

by Hazel Jean Angwani

 Hazel, from Bontoc, Mt. Province is one of two members of PH25, the 25th team of the Columban Lay Missionaries Philippines.  She is currently on her fifth month of orientation to mission.

Who am I? What is life? Where am I really going? Is there really a God? These are the questions that I used to ask myself, and still ask until today. One way or the other, asking myself these questions helped me to confidently face life, make decisions and take a leap forward. And one of these decisions is to become a missionary, particularly a Columban lay missionary.

                I came to know of the Columbans when I was in high school because of my passion for reading and life of adventure. And I can still remember that after reading stories about the life and works of the missionaries, I felt a nudge in my heart that somehow made me decide at that time that I want to become a missionary and live a life of adventure. And of course, like every other dream, it was forgotten for quite a long time. But, indeed, God works in mysterious ways and now, I am close-maybe to living that dream already.

With kids at the Balitawak (Quezon City) overpass bridge

                But living that dream still takes a lot of effort to be able to fully achieve it. There are things to give up and things to work out or nourish. One of the things that was not easy for me to give up is the comfort I have with my family. I have been with them all my life and in the glimpse of an eye, I am leaving them for a dream. It sounds so selfish that sometimes I want to pack my bags and go back home. Then it hit me that maybe it goes the same for them that is why they just let me be. But given that there were no objections coming from them, I take it as a positive note that they also want the best for me. That they trust me and that they give their support. Besides, in the end, I will always have the last call to decide on what to do with my life.

The things to work out and nourish were made possible because of the great support coming from the Columban society. All I can say for now, is that the orientation program is running smoothly. There are times that it gets bumpy given that we are still humans and that everyone of us have our own struggles to live with. But in general, I am enjoying the ride to that moment, God-willing, when I become officially a part of the Columban society. The orientation program has helped me a lot in ways I could not explain in detail. I am thankful for all the lessons, sessions and experiences because it helped a great deal in my internalizations on who I am and my realizations of God. For me, this part of my journey is probably one of the most liberating. Liberating in a sense that I learned that it is ok to be me, that you do not have to be perfect. And that your imperfections are part of who you are. Perhaps, this is the charisma of the Columban society that even after forgetting a dream I made for myself many years ago, God made a way to help me in pursuing that dream.

As I continue this journey in preparation for my overseas mission and discovering more of myself and God, I pray that I will finally get to that point to say, “Yes, finally!”. In God’s grace, everything is possible.

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