Today, a month after you passed away, I let my mind take a stroll down memory lane as it recalls the time when I rushed to take an urgent trip from Bohol where I was supposed to pursue my schooling. I cried a bucket of tears while crossing the sea towards CDO aboard Superferry just to be present on the day of your operation. I chose to stay and spend more time with you as one of your doctors divulged that you were terminally ill with only 3 months left to live, but with God's mercy you continued to live longer than the given term. Since the time you have miraculously survived from your first major operation due to colon cancer, we always look forward to celebrating each year that passes by. We often mark the calendar whenever your birthday approaches and when that specific date comes, we never forget to gather together and feast on some foods as we all thank the Lord for giving you another year, another chance to live and serve Him best. This has become our family's habit for 13 years.
All those years, seeing you strong, healthy and safe is our joy; laughing at your serious but hilarious jokes and tasting your savory recipes are what we enjoyed most and NOW WE TERRIBLY MISSED.
Early this year, we're haunted by the same fear that threatened us years ago, but it's more alarming & dreadful the second time around. You have laid on your hospital bed because of colon cancer complications. Successive operations made you weaker, thinner and pale. Our joy turned into sorrow but our faith remained unmoved as well as our hope. So as to sustain your costly prolonged medication, we begged for financial support from anyone who would be willing to help as we're already buried in debt - a lot of people, institutions and organizations have generously lent what they can afford to give and we are forever grateful to all our relatives, friends, bros & sis in the Lord and even strangers for their fervent prayers and generosity. We have always believed that God will answer our prayers of keeping you well again. BUT AFTER 3 MONTHS ON YOUR SICKBED, YOU FINALLY SUCCUMBED TO CANCER AND IT REALLY HURT AND LEFT US ALL HEARTBROKEN.
God answered our prayers though not in a way we ever wished for, but through our faith and trust, we humbly submit to His will as we tearfully embrace the purpose and reason behind it. God did not take away your sickness for He knows what's best for you. For all the years that you've been battling cancer, He knows how tired you have become. So, he ended your suffering and freed you completely from excruciating pain and bitter sorrow. The 14-year extension to your life was clear enough to see how God loves you, He has given you the rarest chance to repent, live in godliness and store up heavenly treasures. We thank the Lord for His wonderful plans for your life - you were made ready to receive salvation before the time of your death.
"THANK YOU UNCLE!" You have loved, inspired, encouraged and taught us how important it is to live and serve God while there's still TIME. We are all grief-stricken upon your untimely death but we are truly glad that you're now at rest, peacefully waiting to receive your glorious reward. YOU WILL FOREVER STAY IN OUR HEARTS AS YOUR MEMORY LIVES ON! Thank you for the unforgettable precious memories! WE MISS & LOVE YOU SO MUCH...