Obedient Boys Have Pogi Problems Too

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I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
– Philippians 4:13

Obedient Boys Have Pogi Problems Too
by Migs Ramirez

I used to ask God
 why he created me torpe. For those of you who
are not familiar, torpe is another word for handsome.

No, just kidding. Torpe is a non-contagious disease affecting
young men, and its indications are the following: being unreasonably shy and being more than tongue-tied — almost terrified — when there are girls around.

For a long time, it hindered me from really expressing myself. Since I studied in an all-boys school, I felt that I didn’t have the proper balance in relating with members of both sexes.

So with that, I decided to escape having to meet girls and getting into complicated relationships. I proposed to enter the seminary.

It was dinner time with my two younger brothers, mom and dad, and I simply blurted out, “I want to enter the seminary.”

“Croo Croo,” insert crickets and hooting owls.

Then finally, “Wow! That’s great!”

(Whew! I thought I’d have to excuse myself for the rest of the night!)

But when I told them that I planned to enter right after my high school graduation, my parents had to step in. “We’re all for you being a priest,” they said. “If you’re really called for that, God will wait. But for now, we think that the best
next step for you is to enter into a university, with a major you like, so that you would see the ‘outside’ world.”

I was silent.

And with a plastered smile, I said, “Sure.”

But inside, I was terrified.

Deep inside me, my plans to escape failed!

I remember that first day in the university.

I opened the door, and boom! Inside my classroom were gorgeous, smiling, graceful ladies, already in small circles, making friends with everyone else! Because I took up Communication Arts, which was a predominantly female major, there were only about 12 of us guys — and most of them were already getting to know the 36 other girls in “speed dating” fashion!

I was petrified.

As soon as I saw an empty chair, I rushed to sit, not because somebody suddenly suggested a game of “Trip to Jerusalem,” but because I wanted to disappear.

It was a nightmare!

But don’t get me wrong. I did make friends.

I had to simply warm up for the first couple of weeks!

And for the longest time after that, at the back of my mind, I was asking God: “Why did You make me torpe?”

The answer came after four years.

After my first year, I went back and had a heart-to-heart talk with my parents. I told them that I didn’t think university life was for me. I was looking for something more. I already wanted to spend my remaining college years inside formation.

To cut the story short, they allowed me, and I entered within the next few months.

And what happened in the next four years were simply mind-blowing!

I learned so many things.

I learned to pray; to sing; to play the piano, the flute, the guitar; to play basketball, football, swimming, table tennis; to wash my clothes on my own; to iron them on my own; to study; to work; to serve.

It was as if my whole life has been waiting for this moment when all my talents were uncovered! I grew as a person, as a student, as a son, as a child of God.

And here’s the bonus: After all the hard work, the ups and downs of studies and seminary formation, and exactly four years after, I graduated magna cum laude or “with great honor.” I attributed everything back to God and to my family.

So that question popped back into my mind.

“God, why did You make me torpe?”

And I think you know the answer.

I was on a journey that even I couldn’t understand.

But since life is a continuous travel, many times we will only understand it when we see everything in its appropriate context, within the greater plan of God.

Go ahead and draw your own life map.

I’ve seen some of my students work on this very creatively. Some made city maps, some made treasure hunt forest maps. There were some that were in full color, and a few that were etched in charcoal pencils. But some maps were not maps at all — basketball court layouts, musical sheets, even the solar system!

So go ahead and own it.
If your life were a map, what would it look like?
Make sure to be as detailed as you wish, labeling all these important

(i.e. life-defining) events by the age you were in, and by the feelings you had when they happened. And use visual cues such as roadblocks, U-turns, road forks, and such, to represent how you really saw the experience.

Use drawings not sentences.

They unleash the subconscious.

Finally, point to us where you are now, and how far you are to go before your goal. Or, if you feel you’ve reached your goal already, show us how you got there!

You can go ahead and share it with a friend or a small group. Here are some points you want to answer:

1. Walk us through your life map. Share the significant events that make you who you are.

2. If you were to live your life again, what part would you wish were different? Why?

3. What’s your treasure? How far are you from your treasure? If you’ve achieved your treasure already, what was your secret?


This excerpt is taken from Imagine This! by Migs Ramirez.
Photo from Pixabay.com



Imagine you are holding a collection of images, all about your self. What if you have a creative toolbox containing symbols that will draw out the answers to your deepest questions:

Who am I?

How do I move on from my past?

How do I make my dreams a reality?

That would be amazing, right?

Discovering yourself has never been this creative. It’s time to bring out the WOW in you!




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Photo credit: http://piccsy.com/2011/05/reading-8ozcw6p11/ through vi.sualize.us

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