Luab: We have lost our ability to trust

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By Evelyn R. Luab

Light Sunday

Saturday, March 28, 2015


I WATCHED Nora Aunor on TV last week as she read from a piece of paper, words like “tama na, sobra na,” while she demanded President Aquino to step down.

I said to myself, “this is proof that democracy lives in the Philippines.”

Nora Aunor can memorize a script, act and win honors as an actress. She also was a good singer. However, how much of the broad spectrum of economics, graft and corruption, government policies, the workings of the three branches of the government, the different working arms of the Philippine government does she fully grasp?

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I’m not saying that she doesn’t have brains. What I’m saying is, like many of us, we haven’t really studied or even understood the many complex things one has to consider when running a beleaguered nation.

We all have been traumatized by the graft and corruption brought out into the open ever since, Imelda’s shoes, jewelries, all night lavish parties aped after Roman debauchery came about. Can we truly say that if we were in our elected leader’s shoes, we would have done so much better? Who elected our officials, anyway?

The late Dolphy once quipped, “Winning in an election is one thing. But after that, what next?” These were his humble words when he was asked to run for an elective position.

What in the world has happened to each one of us when we send text messages casting aspersions on the senate, congress, our judiciary, our armed forces etc, by lumping each group as if each group were all corrupt and that all of them can be bought?

We have indeed reached a sorry state of affairs when we cannot even trust God or the workings of the Holy Spirit when it comes to good things happening in the Philippines.

Not so long ago, I was asked by a friend, “Why doesn’t God perform great miracles today like the miracles spoken of in the Bible?” My answer was, “I don’t know!” What I do know, however, is that miracles are still happening in our lives.

We have seen communities rise and become more stable, because not only were we given government aid, but the generosity of our brothers and sisters all over the world, kept pouring in. Parents now have become more mindful in instilling values whenever they can.

I have three young grandchildren. Their parents are both working but they have instilled the value of “sharing” among the three. Whoever comes in late for lunch or dinner, knows that enough food will be left. Each one has been taught to always leave an equal amount of food for whoever has not eaten yet.

My heart at one time went out to the youngest grandson as I watched him cut the leche flan into six equal pieces. The cake was rather small. When he finished eating his slice, he looked longingly at the other slices. These children have been taught that if you are the one doing the slicing, you have to pick the smallest piece. Carefully, he covered the cake, picked up his glass of water and walked away from the table. My daughter and I were watching from the sidelines.

In a whisper I was told, “don’t you dare offer your share to him!”

We should not have allowed the corrupt ones to remove our trust in the goodness of men. With dynasties in government, with overflowing stolen money in the pockets of so many corrupt officials, we have become overly suspicious. Yet, there are always honest people who will return lost items, who will give more than their share of alms to even complete strangers and still people who will give more than what they can afford when a crises occurs.

I will end this sharing by borrowing a paradox given by Fr. Carmelo Diola in his homily at the Holy Family Oratory at Oakridge. He said, “Make Haste Slowly!” He used this paradox to lead us back to God in haste but to slowly look into ourselves to reflect on how to transform ourselves to emulate God’s love and compassion.

I am now using his paradox so I can tell young parents to also make haste in instilling values so we can slowly recapture the ability to trust again.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 29, 2015.

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