A Personal Testimony by Sis Ludy Pardo, BCBP Las Pinas
Lito and I were married soon after we graduated from college, had both obtained stable jobs, and we began dreaming of building our own family. Then in 1982 my employer, a nonprofit institution, faced uncertainty due to dwindling grants and funds from international donors, so I decided to tender my resignation from work. We had just started to pay back our housing loan and this decision weighed heavily in our hearts. But despite the uncertainty of getting employed again, Lito’s support and understanding helped ease my burden. We did not cease asking the Lord’s help, for we had strong confidence that He would provide me with a good job.
I savored this break from the rigor of work; I enjoyed every moment with our little daughter. But after only a month of hands-on motherhood, the Asian Development Bank called me for a regular job. Working in a prestigious international institution like the ADB had been my dream and God, in his time, had granted my heart’s desire. I developed a special interest in my work as member of the technical team of the Economics Department. I faced every challenge and valued the experience of working with various supervisors, of different nationalities, all with high level of education and competence. And the generous company benefits provided a great sense of security.
Meantime, Lito had joined the Department of Finance and was tasked to handle foreign-assisted projects of the Bureau of Local Government Finance. As he became too engrossed in his job, especially having regular and frequent out-of-town site visits, his work hours extended. I started to become jealous of the time he was spending in his job. At home, his evenings were still eaten up by more office work; even some weekends were spent for office matters. We hardly had any quality time together.
While Lito had become too busy in his career, I had already mellowed in mine. Challenges at work ceased to excite or interest me. Because of this disparity, I began to withdraw and feel empty. Although raising only one child seemed much easier, I grew disappointed because I wanted to give the same joy, laughter and security to my child, the kind of happy childhood that I had had.
Many uncertainties crossed my mind: How could we create a home for our child when my husband had made his career as his priority, whose mind was pre-occupied with macro concerns, like improving the government’s revenues? I couldn’t relate to these concerns.
In 1990 in the midst of these anxieties, a good friend of mine invited us to the BCBP breakfast. After attending several breakfasts, Lito and I attended the Brotherhood Christian Life Program #17 in Alabang. How wonderfully God works His mysterious ways! I had sought the Lord to touch my heart and that of Lito, and He led us to the BCBP.
The BCLP did not work wonders in our lives overnight. But after we completed the course, Lito and I were gradually able to re-align our priorities, putting God in the center of our lives. We learned to spend more quality time with each other, and took every opportunity for family activity and bonding. We learned to respect one another and find the good in the other, rather than our previous habit of focusing of shortcomings and faults.
Many years later when Lito became the Las Pinas Chapter Head of the BCBP, our priorities shifted and our hearts learned how to beat with the hearts of our members. Juggling between fulltime office work and the demands of service in the chapter did not come easy. Several times, my work came only second to my service. At times, the pressures of both took a serious toll on my health. But we persisted in meeting this challenge of serving the Lord in the BCBP.
Work no longer stimulated me; opportunities for advancement failed to materialize; I grew increasingly disenchanted. But the Lord consoled me in this state of lowliness and urged me to continue listening to Him from the core of my heart. It began to dawn on me that corporate goals – success, status and recognition – did not matter that much to me anymore; those goals were no longer worth pursuing. I desired to devote more quality time for my family and the Lord’s service, and also to engage in some part-time consulting work.
So in 2003 I began asking the Lord’s plan for me. After much prayer and discernment the Lord confirmed my desires. Early 2006, the ADB offered a special separation program for long-serving staff. This allowed me to leave my work of more than 20 years with that organization with a comfortable retirement package, tax-free, plus a bonus equivalent to 2 year’s salary.
More importantly, God has allowed me more time for my family, for service in the BCBP, as well as for the things I had put off because of work demands like exercising in the park, gardening, reading good books and writing articles. I can now serve my family as cook, friend, driver, shopping buddy, confidant, to name a few. The Lord even exceeded my expectation for He allowed Lito and I to work together in some consulting work where we could see that our efforts were converging toward a common goal.
My life has been a series of ups and downs, of challenges and trials, of joys and sorrows, of seemingly endless balancing my roles as wife, career professional, mother to our daughter, and BCBP servant leader. Yet, I thank God for bringing me closer to Him every step of the way. Now I can see that my life has been a series of unfolding miracles, especially in those times when the future is uncertain and I have stepped out in faith, out of my comfort zones, and totally surrendered my life to God! Thank You, Lord! All the glory is Yours!