I am with you always until the end of this world - Jesus (Matthew 28:20).

Preach the Word in season and out of season reproving, rebuking or advising always with patience and providing instructions (2 Timothy 4:2).

Do not fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you (Luke 1:30).

Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. - G. K. Chesterton

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Thursday, October 19, 2017

Reflection for Wednesday October 25, Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 12:39-48

Gospel: Luke 12:39-48
Jesus said to his disciples: “Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour when the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”

Then Peter said, “Lord, is this parable meant for us or for everyone?” And the Lord replied, “Who, then, is the faithful and prudent steward whom the master will put in charge of his servants to distribute the food allowance at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master on arrival finds doing so. Truly, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property. But if that servant says to himself, ‘My master is delayed in coming,’ and begins to beat the menservants and the maidservants, to eat and drink and get drunk, then that servant’s master will come on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour and will punish the servant severely and assign him a place with the unfaithful. That servant who knew his master’s will but did not make preparations nor act in accord with his will shall be beaten severely; and the servant who was ignorant of his master’s will but acted in a way deserving of a severe beating shall be beaten only lightly. Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.”
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When a typhoon is about to hit a certain area the government would always remind its citizens to be prepared or even relocate for a period of time. The reason behind is very basic: To avoid destruction of lives and properties. Those who would hear the call for preparedness would survive and those who wouldn’t will surely suffer.

In today’s gospel Jesus once again calls us to be prepared for He will come to us when we least expect Him to come into our lives. But does Jesus really come to our lives without prior warning? Does He really surprise us with His immediate presence thus we are caught unaware?

Before Jesus comes to us He would first knock into our hearts so that we could open our hearts to Him and embrace His offer of renewal with open arms.  By doing so we hear His call for us to be prepared.

But for those who would pretend not to hear even if they hear, those who would continue with their sinful lives even if Jesus is calling him/her for renewal. They may be awakened to the sad reality of life and this sad reality is the sufferings that they may face for the reason that they did not listen to Jesus.   

Nevertheless, everything is not written in stone, for as long as we breathe there’s always a chance to listen to the voice of Jesus coursed through people around us or even events around us. Who earnestly call upon us to be prepared by means of walking away from all of our sinfulness. - 

In the book of Revelation, the Lord tells us: “I reprimand and correct all those I love. Be earnest and Change your ways. Look I stand at the door and knock, if anyone hears my call and opens the door. I will come into him and have supper with him (Revelation 3:19-20).” -  Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Tuesday October 24, Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 12:35-38

Gospel: Luke 12:35-38
Jesus said to his disciples: “Gird your loins and light your lamps and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival. Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them. And should he come in the second or third watch and find them prepared in this way, blessed are those servants.
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The thought of death is something that we always avoid; we never want to speak about it. But death is one reality of life that will come to each one of us. No one is exempted, rich or poor, educated or not educated, whoever we are it will eventually come to us.

Jesus in our gospel is calling us to prepare for the unannounced coming of the Lord in our lives. It’s sad to say that the coming of the Lord comes to many of us through our death only. But do we need to be sad? For example if we are given by our doctor a month to live, should we be sad with this heart wrenching news? Of course we are entitled to be sad for this is part of our being human.

But after a while the sadness should be replaced by our confidence and faith in God. For the reason that we actually have nothing to fear about death. But for some death is even welcome news for them. How could this be? Ahh, the reason is very simple; they have long prepared for this by their obedience and closeness to Jesus. As such they are not afraid to die and meet up close the Lord who by the way is the author of our lives.

Therefore, it’s always imperative for us to take seriously the advice of Jesus to the disciples. To always be prepared for the coming of the Lord for we don’t know when it will be.

Are you prepared for the Lord’s coming into your life? – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Monday October 23, Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 12:13-21

Gospel: Luke 12:13-21
Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me.” He replied to him, “Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?” Then he said to the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.”

Then he told them a parable. “There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest. He asked himself, ‘What shall I do, for I do not have space to store my harvest? And he said, ‘This is what I shall do: I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, “Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry! But God said to him, ‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself but is not rich in what matters to God.”
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What will be the scenario when we are a few inches away from the doorway of death? Would we still be concerned about our wealth? No, not anymore what would be of prime importance during that time are the relationships that we’ve built.

The first that will matter is the relationship that we’ve built with God, the next is the relationship that we’ve built with our relatives and friends. Our wealth no matter how enormous will not occupy a space in our minds.

Why is this so? Because wealth will not count as our ticket to heaven, what will count is the relationship that we have created with God. What will count are the good deeds that we’ve done to those who are in need.

 But the paradox is so many of us today who are alive and healthy are actively in pursuit of wealth. That we don’t anymore care how many lives would we be stepping on just to have it. We don’t anymore care if we will be called greedy or corrupt just to have it.

In our gospel for this Monday, Jesus is teaching us not to live our lives for the accumulation of wealth, He teaches us not to be generous and not greedy. Jesus teaches us instead to build a relationship with Him. To spread and share our blessings with others most especially to those who are in need.

For what is earthly wealth compared to a personal relationship with Jesus? – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Reflection for Sunday, October 22; 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time; Matthew 22:15-21

Gospel: Matthew 22:15-21
The Pharisees went off and plotted how they might entrap Jesus in speech. They sent their disciples to him, with the Herodians, saying, "Teacher, we know that you are a truthful man and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. And you are not concerned with anyone's opinion, for you do not regard a person's status. Tell us, then, what is your opinion: Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not?" Knowing their malice, Jesus said, "Why are you testing me, you hypocrites? Show me the coin that pays the census tax." Then they handed him the Roman coin. He said to them, "Whose image is this and whose inscription?" They replied, "Caesar's." At that he said to them, "Then repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God."
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Why do people protest against their government? People protest because they feel that they are not being given what is due them by their government.

For example, people expects the following from their government leaders: Honest governance, Effective delivery of basic services, Leadership, competence and so forth. The moment these expectations are not meet there would be discontent sooner or later.  However, if these expectations are meet there would be peace and progress and they would honestly pay tax to the government.   

In the gospel Jesus is asked: “Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not?" Jesus asked for a coin and said: "Whose image is this and whose inscription?" they replied: “Caesar’s” then Jesus uttered this famous line: “So, repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God (Matthew 22:21)."

All along Jesus knew about their deceitful plan to entrap Him based on what He would say, that’s why He told them: "Why are you testing me, you hypocrites (Matthew 22:18)? So Jesus gave them a wisdom filled answer. “Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God (Matthew 22:21)."

If the government is meeting our expectations let us do our duty by rightfully paying our taxes and by obeying its laws. But we also have to be vigilant so that we would not be abused and fooled by our government. Whose leaders mandate emanates from its people whom they swore to serve.

What is our obligation towards God? We have to always honor Him by following His two greatest commands: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. And Love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:37, 39).”

We show our love for God by our pious presence at Holy Mass, by reading the Bible and other reading materials that relate to God, by praying the Rosary and by our prayers that emanates from our hearts. We show our love for our fellowmen by helping them in whatever way possible.

We always have to honor our obligation for God for the simple reason that unlike government who often times does not satisfactorily fulfill its obligation towards us. God has always been fulfilling His obligations for us.

Are you able to fulfill your obligation for God? – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Repleksyon para sa Oktubre 22, Ika-29 na linggo sa karaniwang panahon; Mateo 22:15-21

Mabuting Balita: Mateo 22:15-21
15 Umurong ang mga Pariseo at nagpulong kung paano nila huhulihin si Jesus sa sarili niyang mga salita. 16 Kaya ipinadala nila ang kanilang mga alagad kasama ng mga kampi kay Herodes. Sinabi nila kay Jesus: “Guro, nalalaman namin na tapat kang tao at tunay na nagtuturo ng daan ng Diyos; hindi ka napadadala sa iba at nagsasalita hindi ayon sa kalagayan ng tao. 17 Kaya ano ang palagay mo: ayon ba sa Batas na magbayad ng buwis sa Cesar? Dapat ba tayong magbayad sa kanya o hindi?” 18 Alam naman ni Jesus ang masama nilang pakay, at sinabi niya sa kanila: “Mga mapagkunwari! Bakit ninyo ako sinusubukan? 19 Ipakita ninyo sa akin ang perang pambuwis.” Ipinakita nila ang isang denaryo, 20 at sinabi sa kanila ni Jesus: “Sino ang nakalarawan dito, na narito rin ang kanyang pangalan?” 21 Sumagot sila: “Ang Cesar.” At sinabi niya sa kanila: “Kung gayon, ibigay sa Cesar ang para sa Cesar, at sa Diyos ang para sa Diyos.”
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Bakit ba nag proprotesta ang tao laban sa gobyerno pa minsan minsan? Ang tao ay nag proprotesta dahil sa tingin nila ay hindi ibinibigay sa kanila ang serbisyo na dapat ay ibigay sa kanila.

Ito ay ilang mga halimbawa lamang ng mga serbisyo na inaasahan ng tao sa mga namumuno sa kanilang gobyerno. Tapat na pamamalakad, Epektibo na pagbibigay ng serbisyo publiko, pagiging mabuting lider at iba pa. Pag itong mga expektasyon ng tao ay hindi nasunod ang tao ay natural na magagalit at mag-proprotesta. Pero pag ito ay nasunod ay mag kakaroon ng kapayapaan at pag unlad. At ang tao ay susunod sa mga batas magbabayad ng tapat sa kanyang buwis.

Sa ating pong mabuting balita si Jesus ay tinanong ng mga alagad ng mga Pariseo ng ganito: Guro ano ang palagay mo: ayon ba sa Batas na magbayad ng buwis sa Cesar? Dapat ba tayong magbayad sa kanya o hindi?” Alam naman ni Jesus ang masama nilang pakay, kaya sinabi niya sa kanila: “Mga mapagkunwari! Bakit ninyo ako sinusubukan? Ipakita ninyo sa akin ang perang pambuwis.”

Ipinakita nila ang isang denaryo,  at sinabi sa kanila ni Jesus: “Sino ang nakalarawan dito, na narito rin ang kanyang pangalan?” Sumagot sila: “Ang Cesar.” At sinabi niya sa kanila: “Kung gayon, ibigay sa Cesar ang para sa Cesar, at sa Diyos ang para sa Diyos (Mateo 22:21).” Alam naman ni Jesus ang masama nilang pakay, at sinabi niya sa kanila: “Mga mapagkunwari! Bakit ninyo ako sinusubukan? 

Kung ginagawa ng gobyerno ang kanyang obligasyon sa mga tao ay obligasyon din ng tao na gawin ang kanyang obligasyon sa kanyang goyerno. At ito nga ay ang magbayad ng tamang buwis at ang sundin ang kaukulang mga batas. Pero dapat din na ang tao ay maging mapagbantay para siya ay hindi mauto ng mga namumuno sa gobyerno. Na ang kapangyarihan ay nagmumula din naman sa mga taong bayan.

Ano naman ang ang ating obligasyon sa Diyos? Dapat ay palagi nating sinusunod ang kanyang dalawang pinakadakilang utos. Ang una ay ang mahalin ang Panginoon Diyos nang buong puso, nang buo kaluluwa at nang buo pag-iisip. At ang ikalawa ay: Mahalin ang kapwa gaya ng iyong sarili (Mateo 22:37, 39).

Ipinapakita natin ang ating pagmamahal sa Diyos sa pamamagitan ng ating presensya sa pagdiriwang ng Banal na Misa. Sa pag babasa ng Biblia at ng mga ibang pang babasahin patungkol sa kanya, pagdarasal ng Santo Rosaryo at mga panalangin na nagmumula sa ating puso. Isinasabuhay naman natin ang ating pagmamahal sa ating kapwa sa pamamagitan ng pag tulong sa kanila.

Dapat po ay palagi nating tuparin ang ating obligasyon sa Diyos dahil hindi tulad ng gobyerno na may mga pagkakataon na hindi naibibigay ang kaukulang serbisyo sa mga tao. Ang Diyos ay palaging tumutupad at palagi ding ibinibigay ang kanyang kaukulang obligasyon sa mga tao.
Natutupad mo ba ang iyong obligasyon sa Diyos? – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Monday, October 16, 2017

Reflection for Saturday October 21, Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 12:8-12

Gospel: Luke 12:8-12
Jesus said to his disciples: “I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.

“Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities, do not worry about how or what your defense will be or about what you are to say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say.”
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Are you proud with your relationship with Jesus? Do you own it like a badge of honor? Of course you will answer in the affirmative. However, this not always true because there are instances that you betray Jesus for the fleeting things of this world.

The sad truth is our profession of love for Jesus is often times lip service only. When we are faced with temptation we oftentimes give up Jesus in favor of the fleeting temptation.  When we are put on the spot to make a stand for Jesus we betray Him easily just like how Judas betrayed Jesus.

If we say that we love Jesus we must be proud of it and we must live it, we must not betray Jesus for the things of this world. For what is this world compared to having a relationship with our Lord and Savior?

What would it do you if you acquire all the things and cravings of this temporary world but in the process you lose your relationship with Jesus? Nothing except misery and problems! WE always have to remember that what we presently own and have we will leave or it will leave us.

How about Jesus? He will never leave us, in good times and in bad, in our sorrows and triumphs and in life in this world and beyond this world. He will always be there for us. – Marino J. Dasmarinas  

Reflection for Friday October 20, Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 12:1-7

Gospel: Luke 12:1-7
So many people were crowding together that they were trampling one another underfoot. Jesus began to speak, first to his disciples, “Beware of the leaven–that is, the hypocrisy–of the Pharisees.

There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be proclaimed on the housetops. I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body but after that can do no more. I shall show you whom to fear. Be afraid of the one who after killing has the power to cast into Gehenna; yes, I tell you, be afraid of that one. Are not five sparrows sold for two small coins? Yet not one of them has escaped the notice of God. Even the hairs of your head have all been counted. Do not be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows.”
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Mario is a married man who works abroad. While there he was tempted to have an illicit affair with his female officemate. The forbidden affair bore fruit to a baby boy; since he was abroad the philandering husband was very confident that he will not be caught. 

However, the wife was already suspicious of him so she decided to ask the help of their friends who works with her husband. To make a long story short; the illicit secret was eventually discovered by the wife.

The gospel tells us this: There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known (Luke 12:2). What we think we can keep forever God will unravel, God will do this not to embarrass us. He will do this to give us a chance to straighten out our lives.   

God works in mysterious ways; no matter how we try to conceal our sinful secrets. God will do something about it for it to be uncovered.  Why? So that we can repent, thus we live an upright life once again. – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Reflection for Thursday October 19, Saints John de Brébeuf and Isaac Jogues, Priests, and Companions, Martyrs: Luke 11:47-54

Gospel: Luke 11:47-54
The Lord said: “Woe to you who build the memorials of the prophets whom your fathers killed. Consequently, you bear witness and give consent to the deeds of your ancestors, for they killed them and you do the building. Therefore, the wisdom of God said, ‘I will send to them prophets and Apostles; some of them they will kill and persecute in order that this generation might be charged with the blood of all the prophets shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah who died between the altar and the temple building.

Yes, I tell you, this generation will be charged with their blood! Woe to you, scholars of the law! You have taken away the key of knowledge. You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter. When Jesus left, the scribes and Pharisees began to act with hostility toward him and to interrogate him about many things, for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say.
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Who are the modern day prophets that you encounter today? It’s anyone who truly speaks about God and anyone who has so much concern for your welfare. They would always want you to have strong faith in God.

But we normally don’t listen to them most of the time we instead listen to the fleeting dictates of this world. There are even times that we label them as people who are out of this world. Until we encounter problems and trials because we did not listen to the meaningful advice of these modern day prophets in our lives.

Next time, listen when you are given meaningful advice about God and life. For they are not doing it on their own accord, they were sent by God to you for a very meaningful reason. None other than to bring you closer to God.

Do you usually listen to the voice of God coursed through other people? – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Reflection for Wednesday October 18, Feast of Saint Luke, evangelist: Luke 10:1-9

Gospel: Luke 10:1-9
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two disciples whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, "The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest. Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, 'Peace to this household.' If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you, for the laborer deserves payment. Do not move about from one house to another. Whatever town you enter and they welcome you, eat what is set before you, cure the sick in it and say to them, 'The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.'"
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Why do we sometimes waver with our discipleship? I think it is for the reason that we lack focus and as a result we become half-hearted until we do not anymore trust the providence of God. After which we now trust more on ourselves and Jesus becomes a minimal factor in our lives.

But what is the message of our gospel today? Its full trust and dependence on God alone! If we would only learn to entrust our lives to Jesus and if we would only learn to be faithful to the mission that He has given us. Then we would see how God will provide for us, but the problem is some of us don’t even know what is our mission in this world.

We don’t know our mission because we don’t take our faith seriously. We hardly give it time because we are always busy with our worldly undertakings. Worldly undertakings that can evaporate from us anytime. Worldly undertakings that will not bring us eternal peace and happiness.

Our mission is to become modern day zealous disciples that will help Jesus spread the good news of our salvation.
Are you doing something to propagate the faith that Jesus gave you during your baptism? – Marino J. Dasmarinas  

Reflection for Tuesday October 17, Saint Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop and Martyr: Luke 11:37-41

Gospel: Luke 11:37-41
After Jesus had spoken, a Pharisee invited him to dine at his home. He entered and reclined at table to eat. The Pharisee was amazed to see that he did not observe the prescribed washing before the meal. The Lord said to him, “Oh you Pharisees! Although you cleanse the outside of the cup and the dish, inside you are filled with plunder and evil. You fools! Did not the maker of the outside also make the inside? But as to what is within, give alms, and behold, everything will be clean for you.”
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Was the Pharisee who invited Jesus to dine in his house a fan of Jesus?  Perhaps yes he was a fan for he liked the wisdom and eloquence of Jesus that’s why he invited Jesus to dine in his home. Everything was going smoothly between the teacher and His fan until Jesus did not wash His hands before eating. 

Did Jesus purposely skip washing His hands so that His fan would see Him doing it? Yes, yet there was a deeper reason why he did not wash His hands. Jesus wanted His fan (The Pharisee) to realize that there is something more profound than mere external observance of the Jewish law.   

For Jesus it’s always what’s inside our hearts! Never mind those things that are visible to the naked eye for the reason that what is seen will eventually pass and be forgotten. But what is in our hearts will never be forgotten. For example, the unseen acts kindness and love that we do to our fellowmen.

For instance, we forever remember the acts of kindness and love that has been given or done to us. But we don’t anymore remember the external appearance (What clothes he/she was wearing and so forth) of the person who did these acts of kindness and love for us.

Jesus is always biased with acts of kindness and love most especially unseen acts of kindness and love. For these are the spirit and backbone of His teachings. Jesus never taught us to always be concerned about our external appearance, reputation and the many other external aspects of our worldly lives. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Monday October 16, Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time: Luke 11:29-32

Gospel: Luke 11:29-32
While still more people gathered in the crowd, Jesus said to them, “This generation is an evil generation; it seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it, except the sign of Jonah. Just as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. At the judgment the queen of the south will rise with the men of this generation and she will condemn them, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and there is something greater than Solomon here.  At the judgment the men of Nineveh will arise with this generation and condemn it because at the preaching of Jonah they repented, and there is something greater than Jonah here.”
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A sinful man had a conversion, when he was asked what moved him to be good and Godly. He replied this, I’m dying and I don’t want to be in hell when I depart this world. Hell is real as well as heaven and those who continue to sin and will continue to ignore God’s call to conversion will certainly end up in hell someday.

Some of us may ask, is heaven and hell for real? Yes, it’s both real and it’s already here in our midst.  If we always do good our life would be like heaven on earth, yes there would be problems from time to time. But we will always overcome these problems because Jesus is always at our side to help. On the other hand, if we continue to do bad we can expect our lives to be in a hellish situation today. This is the practical reality of heaven and hell.

However, God loves us so much that He also wants us to repent and permanently walk away from our sinfulness. This is for the reason that the good lord wants us to experience heaven while we are still here in this world. And He also wants us to be in heaven after our passing in this world.  This is the great love of God for us, He always calls us to repentance in everyday of our lives.

Someday when we die some of us will say, if only I listened to Jesus’ call of repentance. I would not be in this hellish environment right now but I did not. I instead continued to enjoy the many pleasures that were brought to me by the devil.

Nonetheless all is not lost yet, there is still ample time for us to repent.– Marino J. Dasmarinas 

 If today you hear His voice harden not your hearts. Hebrews 3:15