As the curtain rises on PEBA for its 3rd annual award - with PEBA 2010 theme on Strengthening OFW Families: Stronger Homes for Stronger Nation, the celebration gives us a welcome opportunity to look into our existence as OFW and Migrant Workers wherever we are right now and from our departure from the point of our origin, the place we always called home - the people whom we have left behind - whom we called our very own FAMILY.
From the place I am sitting right now, I look at my window and from the horizon, 3000 miles across the sea, the umbilical cord that connects me to our country the Philippines which I called home is my FAMILY.
We all have taken so many paths, but it cannot be denied that the family is the first and the most important path. A common path to all, because each family is unique just like every individual, a family is a path which cannot be repated or withdrawn for it is a fundamental gift of God to each one of us, and it can be said that we come into this world within a FAMILY and over the years we start to build our very own FAMILY because we do not only exists but because we live.
But in my 19 years as OFW, I have seen countless cases of infidelities on male, female, married, engaged, young and old OFWs in the Middle East. And it is heartbreaking to hear that a once happy family who dreams to have an economically established family ends up into a broken home. And it is ironic that such infidelities occurs in an Islamic Arab country where "illegal love affair" is a heinous crime in Sharjah Law. I cannot really believe on the boldness of our kababayan in taking such risks - "masarap ba talaga ang bawal?"
So many questions that needs to be answered...
"Is it really migration the main cause of family breakup?" a hopeless YES means that we need to condition the minds of the family left behind to brace the risk of permanent family separation. If there will be no OFWs will it guarantee that there will be no broken homes?
Or "Are human really weak that it cannot resist temptation?", that we must agree on Rico Puno's famous song lyrics that says "ang tao'y marupok, kay daling lumimot" that evil prevails.
Or should we blame our own government for promoting "Labor Export Program" for the exodus of our Filipino people across the world, that for every failure in our life, pamahalaan na lang ang dapat sisisihin natin as an easy excuse for our mistakes and misfortunes.
Each one of us is part of our own family and the mission of strengthening your family relationship must not be limited and reside on the shoulder of husband and wife . If you are a single (bachelor) OFW or single Pinoy expat, you have a greater role in strengthening your family back home too - as they put their hope in you and look upon you as a role model in your family. You maybe unaware how important you are to your parents and brothers and sisters back home that they always consult you on family decisions which concerns financial, health, social and spiritual matters - because you are an important part of their FAMILY.
When was the last time you said "I love you Dad" or I love you Mother", and how about your Kuya, Ate and bunso? Do you have an active warm connection with them? Do you remember their birthdays? Parents' anniversary? How often do you get in touch with your folks back home?
Have we tried to ask ourselves if we have put God in our marriage life and is the Heavenly Father the center of our family? Building a strong family must begin with a strong foundation of love, trust and faith. Each married or single OFWs - beyond borders, we have an important role in strengthening our family - not only through the remittances we regularly send, but through social and spiritual connections with our love ones.
The ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu said, "A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step." So before making your very first step, make sure that you'll be standing on a firm foundation called the "Rock".
Today, PEBA 2010 is knocking at the door of your home, eager to greet you with deep affection and spend time with you to listen to your untold stories, eager to hear your tales through blog entries as official nominee of PEBA 2010 which will touch the hearts of many readers across the globe as you share your stories about YOU and YOUR FAMILY - the love, pain, sacrifice, failure, repentance, forgiveness, reconciliation and success as an OFW and its Family so whoever reads will learn, live, and follow the right path in building an ideal Family of God.
This is an invitation to all my blogging friends who believe in the essence of the family as a fundamental institution of a society and the reason of our own existence as an OFW and migrant worker as we cross borders that we can do more in building a stronger OFW family through love, faith and trust.
Life is Beautiful.
Let us keep on blogging.
Let us keep on inspiring others
not to lose hope and to continue striving
in building a happy, resilient and righteous Filipino families.
Note: The above image was snipped from flickr.com uploaded by TriLauraTri