Life thoughts: I hate teaching

I’m a teacher–a piano teacher. I actually hate it. I’ve been teaching for 4 months now, and I still get nervous before my lesson starts. I’m not always sure of I’m teaching the right stuff to the student–yes! Just one student. We’re in the middle of school in Manila so only a few kids are allowed by their parents to study piano while studying for school. And maybe another factor is the school itself–it doesn’t look so nice and safe from the outside. It’s in one of those areas in Quezon City where people are cramped up, always shouting, in-the-danger-of-having-a-dengue-outbreak sort of places. But I have to tell you, everytime I finish my lesson with my 9-year old kid, I am the happiest teacher. That’s the main reason why I’m still not resigning considering the place, the pretty laid back salary, sometimes delayed pay-offs. Now I understand. It’s those things in life that I would not find even if I had all the money in the world. (well I could have ‘all the money in the world’ in other studios, but that will come)

As I was about to go home after today’s lesson, trying to reconcile what I was feeling at that moment and what I was feeling before I went there, I remembered the perfect teacher and discipler–Jesus.

He was not bothered by the weather. He was not bothered by the kind of people. He was not bothered by the circumstances. He taught and discipled. He loved to be the mentor. And I would want to be like that.

I am so honored to be called a mentor by some people I know just by me saying what I’ve experienced/learned through music, school, church, making the right choices. Maybe that’s why I’m really enthusiastic with the youth of our church who look at me as a kuya (big brother).

So now, even though I might never remove the feeling of being nervous before giving piano lessons, I will really look forward to it. Besides, my student’s so smart, we’re going to finish her module early. Perfect timing to practice for her recital this November.

And no, I don’t hate teaching. I am really passionate about any opportunity to teach!


Life thoughts: my seed buried in the earth

Today marks the first year death anniversary of a dear friend, Cholo Gino. He is a colleague, a choral conductor, a musician, a great teacher and a friend. When he died last year, I could not help but think of him seeing God face to face. I wish he could come back here and tell me how it is to see the face of God. Truly mind-boggling!

Max Lucado in his book, Experiencing the heart of Jesus, says that when we die, we are but SEEDS ‘planted’ in this earth and that what we manifest will be ‘still the seed’ but in a renewed form as said by Paul to the Corinthians:

35But someone may ask, “How are the dead raised? What kind of body will they have?” 36Foolish person! When you sow a seed, it must die in the ground before it can live and grow. 37And when you sow it, it does not have the same “body” it will have later. What you sow is only a bare seed, maybe wheat or something else. 38But God gives it a body that he has planned for it, and God gives each kind of seed its own body.

1 Cor. 15:35-38 NLT

Just from that verse, I could think of some things about the death of Kuya Cholo:

  • he is in heaven
  • he is in a better state
  • he has a better body (Kuya Cholo is really big, I tell you)
  • what he is now can not come without his death on the ‘ground’
  • his death on the ‘ground’ will not happen if he did not cultivate and plant his seed in Christ
  • he forever lives because of that

Yes, I miss him. There’s actually an upcoming event, a friend’s recital that hopefully (yes! hopefully) this person chooses me to conduct the composition. I would love to dedicate that to Kuya Cholo who, through me just observing and watching him through the years, taught me a lot in music. Well, he is in a better place and I reiterate, FACE to FACE with God–that’s really mind-boggling!

10but it is now shown to us by the coming of our Savior Christ Jesus. He destroyed death, and through the Good News he showed us the way to have life that cannot be destroyed.

2 Tim. 1:10

in memory of a friend….

Life thoughts: hope in Jesus

I’ve been very very anxious–disheartened–lately. I’ve been looking for answers left and right, asking counsel from people I look up to, trying to squeeze God for any sign of where He wants me to go after I graduate college. I have plans already of going out of the country and earning my masters degree, but so far, I have found no scholarships. If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you know this.

I almost thought that everything was in place til this week when I received a couple of emails from people I inquired to about the scholarships. My mom was already asking me about any plan if ever I don’t get one. Well, there’s no other plan! I’ve been imagining this since before I went to college. And now…nothing!

Tonight, I was studying our material for church tomorrow, Experiencing the Heart of Jesus by Max Lucado. The title of the lesson was Experiencing Hope in Jesus.

2 things really spoke to me:

1. He has ample space for me

If in this world, we experience a lot of rejection, a lot of “WE HAVE NO ROOM FOR YOU”, well, God has! If He has some space for me, this means that I am part of the journey–I am part of the family–I am a child–He has a plan! It’s really difficult to say that I trust God COMPLETELY, but…I guess I have to. He already has things planned out for me. All I have to do is either wait, or ask what He has in store for me.

He doesn’t just have some space, but
2. He already prepared a place, a MANSION for me

If I have a mansion, that means that what He plans is good…GRAND! Although I see things in the perspective of the here and now, God understands not just that but the perspective of YET TO COME.

Jer. 29:11
I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you…

Although I still don’t understand everything, like Abraham, I should take a leap of faith and trust that someday I can be a Joseph who didn’t understand everything, yet he obeyed, and became mighty.

If it is God’s will, He will give me a scholarship, if not, He has better plans. My hope is in God, He holds my future.

If you’re reading this, pray for me. God bless you!

by Max Lucado

by Max Lucado

Alexander John ‘AJ’ Villanueva
posted from my Blackberry