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A Gift That Keeps On Giving

Updated: Mar 5, 2021

“If you want to bring happiness to the whole world, go home and love your family.” - Saint Therese of Calcutta

A new life awaits when starting a family. This is a fact for all married couples, a fact that isn’t really taken into account until after marriage. Starting a family is not easy. First of all, there is the adjustment period with the spouse. Of course, the honeymoon period helps a lot when easing newly-weds to their new way of life. However, slowly but surely, the realities of life get its grips. There are times of sheer bliss, time shared just between the couple during the first year or so. And then there are times of argument. Times of irritation, annoyance, and sometimes, outright anger towards the other.

This is true in our case with my wife, Ryzza. As married couples, we share everything in life, from our morning to our evening routines, and everything in between. And as two unique individuals who made a vow to, as much as possible, become one, this creates friction between us. Being together almost 24/7, especially during the pandemic lockdowns, created an avenue for love and or hate. We do love each other, but we also argue with each other. This is one of the many realities of marriage. When there is love, there could also be hate. We are just human beings subject to our own emotions, after all. However, we must remember that even quarreling at times is healthy, as this creates an avenue, an outlet for our frustrations in life and with each other. What is important is, that after each argument, there is reconciliation and peace.

All throughout our arguments, our experience as Pure Heart Philippines missionaries have helped us. We have been formed to be patient and understanding, and to give ourselves wholly to others. To love Jesus Christ and our neighbors unconditionally is what we have been immersed in all throughout our active missionary days. Those days of self-giving have allowed us to easily give ourselves in service to each other and readily understand each other, leading to a much more patient heart and mind to forgive each other when we are at fault.

A few months after our marriage, we have confirmed that Ryzza is pregnant with our first child. What joy it was for us! We didn’t really expect to have a child so fast, but there he was! We are thankful to God for this opportunity to become parents. We knew that our lives would change that day, and sure enough, 9 months later, it did! Sleepless nights and joyous days were our theme, even unto this day. What a joy our son is to us. We learn more about him as he grows up and develops new milestones each day. And more surprisingly, we also learn about ourselves more. We didn’t know how much we could sacrifice for our family, what lengths we would do to ensure our son gets the best that we could provide.

Starting a family is indeed a wondrous, albeit arduous task. But then, there is another good news. Our second child is on his/her way! Our hearts are filled with even more joy and expectations. Although our challenges are quadrupled with the coming of our second child, we embrace this blessing that God has entrusted us.

Throughout our journey from being singles to forming exclusive relationships to marriage and now to starting our own family, we are thankful for our time with Pure Heart Philippines. Not only as missionaries, but as friends, and as one big family. From being formed as well-rounded individuals during the season of our being single, to immersion of what true love means as a couple, and living and loving through our married life, and as parents, our foundation as individuals have been solidified through our formation with Pure Heart Philippines and our mother organization, Corazon Puro.

With this, I can truly say that, one can receive more by giving. And what better way to give, than to give ourselves in service to God and to our neighbor?

Written by John Paul Mumar. John Paul and Ryzza are part of the Pure Heart family since its beginnings and have been married since 2018.

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