WHEN BAD THINGS HAPPENED TO GOOD PEOPLE (WHERE ARE WE NOW?)
COMMEMORATING THE SECOND YEAR AFTER THE TYPHOON YOLANDA
By: Fr. Wilson R. Chu, SThD
The Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) is something that we do not want to experience again. For some, they do not want to hear even the word itself. It brings back the bad memories we had, the fear, the sorrow aftermath seeing the devastation caused by it. While our experience with Haiyan is a tragic one, let also make use of H – A – I – Y-A-N to remind us of some realities in life.
1.) HUMBLING EXPERIENCE
The experience we had reminds us that we are not the owner of our life. Second, we are just temporary in this world and anything that we can acquire during our existence can be lost anytime.
It is an invitation for us to focus on how to live a meaningful life with God rather than on what we can possess.
2.) ACCEPTANCE and continue to move on.
We could no longer bring back our loved ones from the grave. It is time to move on and heal the pain we had experienced. Let us not dwell on the painful memories but rather we move on and face our life. Remember the story Job in the Bible when everything he had was lost, he did not forsake God instead he continued to trust God. When God saw his faithfulness, He blessed job 10 times.
We may have a lot of questions why God allow it to happen, but we will never get an answer which will suffice us. Nevertheless, God can work through our sufferings to accomplish better things in our life (cf. Rom. 8:28). Let us try to transcend the reason why we ask those questions. Just like Christ in the cross, our whys must not be a question of doubt, but a question of longingness of the presence of God that will lead us to trust Him more and say, “Lord into your hands, I command my Spirit.”
3.) INTERCEDE FOR THOSE WHO PERISHED DURING THE TYPHOON.
They were already victims of the typhoon, let us not then deprived them to experience eternal happiness in heaven. What we can do to help them in return is to intercede for them in our prayers and mass intentions. Let us continue to pray for them because they need us.
4.) YESTERDAY IS DIFFERENT FROM TOMORROW.
We can never change the past, that was part of our life’s history, but we can always improve our present and future life. Let us not be deterred nor get disheartened. Let us not allow our past experiences to hinder us from achieving our dreams. Remember, while there is life, there is hope because God is always with us.
5.) ACKNOWLEDGE GOD IN OUR LIFE.
A foreigner once told me, “Father, if what had happened to you will happen in our country, we might lost the meaning of life and surely many of us will commit suicide. Your faith in God is really strong.” Truly, if God did not intervene, maybe all of us are already dead. As what stated in the book of Hebrews 13:5 that God will never leave us nor forsake us, gives us an assurance that God is always there for us and continue to guide us through life. Let us acknowledge Him by reaching out with bended knees thanking Him always.
6.) NEW WAY OF SEEING LIFE.
Let us be thankful that God spared us during the typhoon Haiyan. He has reasons why He allowed us to live. Let us make our life more meaningful. Be the source of love, happiness and inspiration to others most especially to our family. Treasure them while they are with us. Be generous to God. Be an instrument of love and make God be proud of you. GOD BLESS YOU ALWAYS.