MEANS Christmas Letter.

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“Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Men” is a familiar line from one Christmas Carol. We always pray for peace especially at Christmas because we celebrate and remember the birth of God’s Son on earth who is the source of peace. We have hope rekindled because of Jesus’ promise in John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world”

We hope God’s Greatest Gift keeps you hopeful not only at Christmas but throughout the New Year and throughout your lives.

This Christmas, we are featuring the testimony of one our MEANS volunteers who was in despair and almost lost hope but kept on trusting in the Lord’s goodness to grant the desire of her heart – to pass the NCLEX board exam. May you be blessed with Jerelyn Del Carmen’s testimony…

Icing on a cake with cherry on top or frosting on the banana bread! That’s how I compare this examination in my life… I consider myself a banana bread, ok to eat! Already filling and satisfying, but even better if with frosting.

I graduated from nursing school in the Philippines in 2007. I took NCLEX multiple times and failed. Every failure was emotionally and spiritually draining for me. I lost self-confidence, to be honest. I almost doubted God’s goodness and promises in my life. I wanted to be alone but asked myself where would I go apart from Him? There is no place that He is not there. So, I kept believing and trusting that He will give me this favor in His own perfect time, or if not, I know that I will still be okay because I know in my heart that not for a moment has He left me nor forsaken me. In other words, isinang-tabi ko muna (I set aside this desire for a while).

Along the way, life happened. Ed and I are reminded of our growing family and I thought I needed to do something and contribute financially. We moved to a new house which we consider a huge blessing and milestone for our family. God is good. All is well. But one part of my heart is still hurting. I thought I had to have a closure with this unresolved issue of mine. I prayed about it and I asked God how many times should I take this exam and fail to know that this is not for me? Clearly, God impressed in me to surrender every area of my life to Him and He will take care of everything. I cried and I just agreed. It’s hard to give up something that you really, really want to happen. I consoled myself by thinking that if God will not give it to me, for sure He will give me something better. So, I decided that I will take it again and prepare for it.

After the past failed exams, I realized that I had to do something totally different this time: I took three-day live review classes which really helped me. I organized my schedule and disciplined myself to really study and prepare for this important test. Lastly, I did not keep it a secret. Before my exam, I asked people to pray for me and you know what I mean. I asked my church family in the Philippines, my Facebook friends and my MEANS Family. I don’t understand and I don’t know how to explain it but
I experienced what the peace that passes all understanding meant (Philippians 4:6-7). I placed my full confidence in our loving God that whatever the result will be, I will be thankful and accept it whole-heartedly. For sure, I will cry. But God is always good, and His character is not affected by any unpleasant circumstances that happen to us.

I took the exam 11/13/2017 with 75 questions (that’s the minimum number of items one could answer and the maximum is 265). It was as if I was just guessing most of the questions, but there were questions also that I am confident I was correct. I felt God’s presence and that’s a powerful point for me to go on and give it all. After that, I felt unsure but peace prevailed. It’s not me who will decide about the result, my part was done.

After two days of walking in faith, we checked out the quick results, and I cried. Here I am now, standing victorious. God is the lifter of head from the lies of doubt and shame of my previous failures. I give back all the glory, thanksgiving, praise and honor that belong to God alone. Thank you also for helping me bring this request to God. There is power in united prayer! — Jerelyn Del Carmen

Contributor: Grace Rocha, MEANS Volunteer

 

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