The Squid Ate a Fish

“Aaahh! Guess what?! The squid ate a fish! The squid ate a fish!!” I ran around the house with a lifeless, baby fish on my hand and told my family about the awesome moment I had with mom.

While I was helping her prepare our dinner last night, she casually told me that she found a baby fish in the belly of the squid. Before I could even react, she immediately threw the fish in the trash bowl near her. “Mom! Why’d you throw it away?” I said. “Hahaha. I want to see it!”

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So, she got the fish and placed it on my hand… and I couldn’t believe it. It was amazing!!! I was so amused by it that I had to tell everyone about it. I went back to the kitchen with the baby fish and asked mom why she wasn’t surprised or excited about it.

She told me that it wasn’t her first time to see a fish in a squid. And when I asked her how many times this happened before, she couldn’t give me an estimate. They were too many to count.

“What?? Hahaha. That’s funny. I’ve never seen a fish in the bellies of the squids I’ve cleaned before. This is so cooool, mom.” I replied.

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That simple moment with my mom reminded me of the privilege of freely spending time with my parents and learning from their experiences and wisdom. They know so much more than I do — and even if I, sometimes, am tempted to think that they don’t, I trust that God will continue to work in and through them as they speak to me and lead me. Besides, God doesn’t make mistakes and He certainly didn’t make a mistake in choosing them as my parents and making me their daughter.

Proverbs 1:8 – “Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.”

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If I didn’t spend time with mom in the kitchen last night, I would have missed out on a rare opportunity: to see a baby fish in the belly of a squid. Woohoo! But, God allowed it to happen and I really enjoyed it! By His grace, I pray that I will continuously make an effort to spend time with my folks as much as I can. :)

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” –Exodus 20:12

folks

Encourage yourself one treat at a time. :)

Encouraging Tea :)

Chilled milk tea with chewy, black tapioca pearls is definitely one of the most refreshing drinks I’ve had in my life. Interestingly, there are numerous milk tea stores in Metro Manila, which makes it more convenient for me to acquire such comforting beverages. However, last weekend, instead of buying from a milk tea store, I decided to make a couple of milk teas at home. I knew that it was the perfect and simple treat for me because I was sick and feeling physically weak at that time.

God sure does speak to us in different ways and last weekend, He reminded me of how we can be a blessing to others. :)

1. We become a blessing to others when we respond to them in a way that pleases God… no matter what.

I went to a supermarket to buy wintermelon, uncooked black tapioca pearls, and strawberries. Unfortunately, when I got there, I found out that they weren’t selling the tapioca pearls. To make things worse, when I asked one of the staff members in the fruit section if they had wintermelons, he rudely told me “Wala kaming wintermelons!” (In English: “We don’t have wintermelons!”)

Stunned by his response, I was tempted to talk back because it was his duty to respectfully assist the customers in the supermarket and his attitude was unacceptable. But before I could even say a word, God stopped me and helped me to realize that maybe that guy was just having a hard day at work and he unintentionally poured out his stress on me. The last thing he needed was a rude response from me too.

I was reminded of Ephesians 4:29, where it says:
“Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

By God’s grace, I smiled instead, told him “Ohh, okay. Thank you!”, and left the supermarket with peace in my heart. I realized that it brings much joy to God when we choose to honor Him in the way we respond to others. It makes our hearts so much peaceful too!

2. We become a blessing to others when we consider their interests too.

Hoping that I could still find tapioca pearls in our area, I went to another supermarket the next day. However, they also did not have the pearls. I was already thinking of my Plan B for the treat when I found myself walking near the fruit section. Since I was already there, out of curiosity, I asked one of the staff members if they were selling wintermelons and he replied “Ah, yes, Ma’am! Please follow me.”

My eyes beamed as we slowly approached the pile of fruits. “Wow! Thank you!” I told the employee who assisted me. Before I left, he even gave me instructions on how to slice it properly and warned me that the juice of the fruit may feel sticky too.

Later on, I found out that the fruit he handed me wasn’t wintermelon… it was yellow watermelon. Haha. But nonetheless, I was blessed by the employee’s response and I was inspired to be an encouragement to others too. He could have just led me to the fruit section and continued to do his own thing. But, I saw how he selflessly took the time and effort to try his best to assist me with my concerns about the fruit (as compared to the other supermarket guy :) ).

Do I intentionally reach out to others? Do I sincerely spend time with them and help them out with their concerns/struggles? Or do I just stay in my comfort zone and hope that they won’t ask help from me? Do I pray for others?

 

It says in Hebrews 10:24:

“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.”

3. We become a blessing to others when we help them draw closer to God and give Him the glory.

Desperate times indeed call for desperate measures!

After buying the watermelon and strawberries, I knew that I still needed to get the black, tapioca pearls. Surprisingly, there was a milk tea store (Chatime) nearby and I thought of buying the cooked pearls instead. I asked the person at the cashier if I could buy tapioca pearls and she slightly laughed and smiled at me. But, when she realized that I was serious about buying only the pearls, she eventually assisted me and happily gave me my order.

I couldn’t be happier! :) I thanked God that the cashier lady helped me out because I really thought she wouldn’t allow me to buy only pearls from the store (since it wasn’t allowed in other stores). She was a blessing!

Matthew 5:16

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Do we encourage others to know God more or do we cause others to go farther away from God?

I went home that day smiling because I saw how God was in control of my situation. After preparing and drinking these two drinks: Watermelon Milk Tea and Strawberry Milk Tea, I was pleasantly refreshed. But more importantly, I realized that in spite of my weak body, the hassles I experienced as I looked for the ingredients, and even the “rude” employee that I encountered; I still praise God because through these, He reminded me of how I can honor Him by being a blessing to others. By God’s grace and strength and with His guidance through His word and the Holy Spirit, I know that we can be blessings to others. We can bless His Name. :)

So, what are we waiting for?

Encourage others one treat at a time! :)

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About Me

My name is Nicole Obligacion and I started this blog because I was inspired by Hebrews 10:24 and Hebrews 3:13. I love to eat, cook, bake, read the Bible, and encourage. :)

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