Allow Love To Heal You

You’re God’s Very Own
By Bo Sanchez

Let me share with you a story that blessed me deeply. I read it from the Chicken Soup series,but let me paraphrase it for you here.

One day, Abbie, a social worker, received a call from an orphanage.

Could she find foster parents for a particular baby, they asked.

Abbie visited the orphanage and saw a cute little baby standing on the crib. The baby smiled at her and she smiled back. When she knelt down in front of the infant, it was only then when she discovered that the baby had no arms. The person in charge of the orphanage asked Abbie, “Do you think there’ll be parents who would want this child?”

For the next four months, there were many couples that visited that orphanage, looking for a child. But no one wanted Baby Freddie.

One day, Abbie got a call from a Mr. and Mrs. Pearson. They said they wanted to adapt a child. She paid them a visit.

“We don’t have much money, but we have much love to give,” the couple said.

“Any preferences?” Abbie asked.

“A boy,” Mrs. Pearson said, “my husband will play basketball with him. He’ll be good for a boy.
How long will it take before we can adapt a baby?” Mrs. Pearson asked.

“Well, perhaps in a year,” Abbie said.

“Isn’t there a baby we can adapt now?” Mr. Pearson asked.

Abbie sighed. She opened her bag and pulled out the photo of Baby Freddie.

“He’s an adorable child,” she said, “except that he has no arms.”

The couple looked at the photo for a long time.

It was Mr. Pearson who spoke first. “What do you think?” he asked his wife.

“Football,” she said, “He can play football with you.”

“Sports isn’t really that important,” he said.

“No, it is. A boy needs to have a sport.”

They kept on talking as if Abbie wasn’t around.

Finally, Abbie interrupted, “Do you want the baby?”

Mrs. Pearson said, “Want? Want the baby? Abbie, you don’t understand. This baby is ours!”

Abbie brought Mr. and Mrs. Pearson to the orphanage.

She presented Baby Freddie to them. And Mr. and Mrs. Pearson saw him, rushed to him, and embraced their son in their arms.

He Sees You Differently

I’ve met a lot of people who believe they’re like Freddie.

Do you feel defective? Deformed? Lacking?

Deep within you, you think that you’re not normal. That there’s something wrong with you.

Well, God doesn’t agree.

He’s like Mr. and Mrs. Pearson.

He doesn’t think you’re defective at all.

He says, “You’re mine. You’re my child.”

Today, allow God to embrace you.

And in that embrace, be healed.

I remain your friend,
Bo Sanchez

The Best Is Yet To Come!

A Wife Of A Jobless Husband Shares Her Story of Waiting…
By Bo Sanchez

I’m taking a break from my teaching series on “Getting Rid of Hidden Addictions.” (I’ll give the next article next week.) Let me pause to take a breather and share with you a beautiful story. I met Yane Pe Benito when I gave a talk at her company, Pioneer Insurance. Yane is a lovely woman with such an amazing story to tell, I decided to share it to the world.

Two years ago, Yane’s husband, Beni, without warning, lost his job. It was doubly painful because it was a great job. For 6 years, Beni enjoyed working in a multinational distribution company for skincare products. But because of a reorganization that happened in the company (which is happening in many companies nowadays), he was “redundated”.

Yane decided to tell her two small children, Gabriel (then age 6), and Marga (then age 4) about the sad news, carefully choosing the words she’d use to put it to them. “Kids, we have to take better care of our things… and not waste our money because …Daddy doesn’t have a job anymore.”

Little Gabriel said, “You mean Daddy was fired?” Yane was surprised at the bluntness of his words. “Now where did you learn that word?!” Her son said matter-of-factly, “From Peter Parker - Spiderman.”

But yes, redundated was just a fancy word for “Get out, we don’t need you here anymore.”

Losing a job is always painful, even if it goes with a “separation pay” or a “redundancy package”.

While Yane was thankful for the windfall, part of her was anxious, wondering how long their family was going to have to live off the separation package.

The first few months were OK; Beni got an average of two invitations per week to come for interview. But as the months stretched to a year — and then more, the invitations got fewer and far between.

During the almost two years of her husband’s joblessness, Yane was going through her own anxiety. As a mother to two growing schoolchildren, she saw their savings getting smaller. (As a contingency measure, she moved out of her 8-yr old job to accept a higher-paying one.)

But aside from the dwindling funds, she was also worried about Beni’s self-esteem. It wasn’t that he wasn’t trying; it was apparent thatthere just weren’t enough job opportunities for middle-aged men with his background and experience. There were actually two jobs that he accepted, but both were short-lived. Call it a conflict of personalities or a clash of styles, but he couldn’t see himself working there long-term. Anguished, Beni would walk out the door again.

And their marriage started to suffer too, since she was the one who was now earning for the family. “Will my husband’s ego take this for long?” she asked herself many, many times. As each month passed, she was getting more and more worried for Beni.

Yane began questioning God, “Lord, I don’t understand what else you’re trying to teach us! How else should we pray? What else should we pray for?”

That was when Yane realized that their prayer had to be more specific.

So she gathered her two kids around her and said, “Let’s pray for Daddy, that he would find a good job with a good boss – someone like his first boss in his former company.”

And so that became the family’s specific prayer. “Lord, please help Daddy get a boss that is as good and kind as his first boss in his old company, in Jesus name.”

One day, about a year ago from today, Yane came home from work and saw the kids and her husband in a huddle.

“What’s all this about?” she asked.

She heard her kids whisper excitedly, “Show it to her now!”

Beni handed her a brown envelop.

Yane thought it was something from the kids’ school.

But no. As she slowly pulled out the paper from the envelope, she read the name of a company…then her husband’s job title… then his salary… At these, she merely nodded in satisfaction.
But when she got to the bottom of the paper, she was shocked. For there was a signature. It was that of Beni’s favourite boss!

To her kids’ astonishment, Yane began to cry and laugh at the same time. She could hardly believe it! Like a child, she jumped up and down with joy, much to the kids’ amusement who jumped and laughed along with her.

Gabriel asked his mother, “Mom, why are you crying and laughing at the same time?”

Yane saw a great opportunity to explain, “I’m crying because I’m so happy, son. Remember how you prayed for a good boss for Daddy? Look at this name,” she pointed to the paper she was holding. “We were merely asking for a boss that would be like Daddy’s old boss. But no, God gave your Daddy exactly the same boss! He answered our prayers!”

That was when Gabriel began to sob.

“Why are you crying?” Yane asked.

“Because I’m so happy too,” the little boy said, as the entire family embraced each other.

When Yane shared me this story, I knew I had to share it with you.

Because all of us go through many hardships and losses.

We lose our jobs, we lose our loved ones, we lose our money, we lose our friends… And sometimes, we wait and wait for the pain to go away, for the loss to be recovered. Sometimes, we wait for a long time. (Yane and Beni had to wait for two long years.)

But in the end, I believe that God has prepared the very best blessing for you.

Have faith. Trust. The best is yet to come!

I remain your friend,
Bo Sanchez


How To Get Rid Of Bad Habits Now! Discover What You Really Need

Do you have a hidden addiction that is stealing your life away?
By Bo Sanchez

Have you heard of the great Houdini?

As a young boy, I loved reading about him. Houdini was probably the most famous escape artist in the world. I’m not sure if the story I’m about to tell you is part legend and part history, but I find it utterly fascinating.

Houdini boasted he could escape any jail cell in less than an hour. One day, a small town in the British Isles built a new jail cell and they were proud of it. “Come give us a try,” they said to Houdini, and he agreed.

He walked into the prison cell bristling with confidence. After all, he had done this hundreds of times before.

Once the jail cell was closed, Houdini took off his coat and went to work. From his belt, he got a flexible but tough ten-inch piece of steel. He knelt in front of the door and started working on the lock.

At the end of 30 minutes, his confident expression had disappeared. At the end of an hour, he was drenched with perspiration.

After two hours and totally exhausted, Houdini literally collapsed against the door. And the force of his weight was enough to push the door open!

Because in reality, the door had never been locked. It was locked only in one place: In his own mind. This meant only one thing. It was firmly locked. Because whatever your mind says is locked—is locked.

Even if it isn’t.

You Can Be Free!

Friend, you can get rid of your bad habits.

You can be free from your addictions.

The Bible says, you have been called to live in freedom.

I should know. I’m a recovering sex addict—jailed in compulsive pornography and sexual fantasies for years. Yes, even as I was serving God and preaching. Like Houdini, I tinkered with the “lock” of my jail cell and lost hope because I couldn’t unlock the door. (For my full story, read my book, Your Past Does Not Define Your Future. You can get it at I’m making an audio book and E-book of this same book very soon.)

One day, I had a powerful realization. I discovered that the door wasn’t locked—except in my mind. I realized that at any time, I could push hard and the door would swing open—and I could simply walk out. And stay out!

And that’s what I did.

My friend, you can get rid of your addictions.

Here’s the truth: 70% of people get rid of their own addictions on their own. You see, there is no ONE singular way to get out of an addiction. There are many ways to get rid of your destructive bad habits. (We will examine all these ways in awhile.)

But before I explain them, let me answer a very important question.

What Is An Addiction Anyway?

I try to avoid technical words (my brain freezes up), so let me share with you my simple definition of an addiction. It’s any action that (1) you do repeatedly, (2) can’t stop doing, and (3) that’s harmful to your life.

Let me tell you a story my golfing friends like to tell. They say golfers love their golf more than anything else in the world…

One day, two guys were playing golf on a sunny day. In the distance, they saw a funeral car pass by—with a train of cars following it.

One of the golfers stops playing. He bows his head for a moment of silence.
The other golfer was very impressed. He said to his golfing partner, “Wow, I didn’t know you’re religious.”

“Not really,” said the other golfer, resuming his putting. “After all, I was married to that woman for 28 years.”

There’s nothing wrong with golf. It’s a healthy sport. But that widower was clearly addicted to it.

All of us agree that alcoholism, drug addiction, and compulsive gambling are serious forms of addictions. But I’m sure that most of us reading this article don’t have these more obvious addictions. But what about hidden addictions? They too destroy our life and the lives of our loved ones…

Do You Have A Hidden Addiction?

CLICK HERE to read the rest of this article.


The Dad Who Brought Me Out For Pizza

Father Did Many Things, But I Will Always Remember Him As…
The Dad Who Brought Me Out For Pizza
By Bo Sanchez

My Dad is gone.

My hero. My mentor. Gone.

An hour before he died, I gently brushed my hand on his grey hair. I looked at his tired face, his wrinkled hands, the tubes attached to his arm—and something in me told me his time was up. He wanted to go home. I prayed a blessing on him. An hour later, he quietly died in his sleep.
Friends, this should have happened eleven years ago…

God Gave Him A Long Extension

Eleven years ago, my father was fixing a light bulb in our garage. He stood on a bench, reached for it, and lost his balance. He came crashing down, the back of his head hitting the concrete floor. We rushed him to the hospital. Soon, he lost control of his limbs. I can still vividly recall that scene when my father, a strong man, was coming down the steps with my two sisters almost carrying him down. He couldn’t move his legs anymore. Through brain scans, the doctors saw three blood clots in his brain. Soon, they said, he would die because of them. They performed two brain surgeries on him. He stayed in the ICU for three months. We almost lost him to severe pneumonia.

But miracle of miracles, he slowly recovered from the grip of death…

God granted him a second life.

To Teach Us To Love More

That was eleven years ago—And how I enjoyed those eleven years!

Yes, he could no longer work or serve the church or community. He could no longer talk clearly. Just garbled words. His eyesight became very bad. And the emotional center in his brain was also damaged, so he became erratic and sometimes acted like a child. He was a mere shadow of who he was.

But for those eleven years, it was so easy to make him smile. All I had to do was bring him out to a cheap Japanese restaurant. He loved his sashimi in wasabe sauce. During this period in his life, eating out with his family was the only thing that made him happy.

For eleven years, I embraced him everytime we met—something I didn’t do before his accident. For eleven years, I always said, “I love you, Dad”. For eleven years, I was in charge of cutting his fingernails and toenails—something I loved to do (and would miss doing.)

I believe one of the reasons why God extended his life for eleven years more was so that we could learn how to love more. That was his last assignment from above.

And then it was time to say good-bye…

His Last Breath

Two weeks, Mom noticed he was getting weaker. She said that he had a hard time climbing the stairs to the Light of Jesus Community Prayer Room right beside his home—a place he frequented twice a day, morning and evening. (For the past 20 years, the Blessed Sacrament has been exposed there, 24 hours a day, and Dad and Mom were up there communing with God each day.)

Seven days ago, because of this growing weakness, he fell on his way up his bedroom, his forehead crashing on the wooden steps. A doctor from the community came to suture his deep wound—12 stitches in all. He went through two brain scans but doctors only saw an old blood clot from eleven years ago. Still, as each day progressed, we observed he was getting weaker.
Four days ago, he could hardly get up from his bed.

When we brought him to the hospital the two days ago, he slept most of the time.

And this morning, an hour after midnight, he breathed his last.

Dad was 88 years old.

Would You Follow A 13-Year Old Boy?

Oh, there are many things that I could say of my father.

For example, for 16 years, Dad served in the Light of Jesus Community as one of the Elders, until his accident forced him to resign.

And whatever group Dad joined, whether it was the Homeowners Association or the Parish Council, he’d always be chosen as the Treasurer. Because he looked so honest. And he truly was. Because of this, he also took care of the finances of our Community. He labored that every single centavo be accounted for. (I believe the reason why we remain strong to this day was because our finances have been above reproach—a legacy he leaves behind.)

More than all this, I believe he was one of the most humble men I knew.

Who among you would follow your 13-year-old boy?

Ever since I started preaching at 13, he sat at the audience listening to me preach. And when we founded Light of Jesus Community when I was but 14, he agreed that I become its Presiding Elder and he only one of its Elders. Though Dad was still the leader in the home, he followed my leadership in community. Dad was Assistant Vice President of San Miguel Corporation and held an MBA degree from the University of the Philippines. Why would he follow his little boy? But he did so because he believed that God anointed me to lead.

All through theses years, he was content in his role as my main supporter.

I remember one day, he pulled me aside and said, “Bo, you have a gift of proclaiming God’s Word. I don’t have that gift. I wish I had it. If I had it, I would preach everyday. Bo, you have that gift. Use it. Use it everyday.”

When I was young, I had crazy ideas. One day, I told the Community to surrender their attachments to God. So in one prayer meeting, people surrendered their jewellery, clothes, and TV sets to God. Dad gave up our sala set, the most beautiful furniture we had, sold it and gave the proceeds to the Community. Yes, no matter how crazy my ideas were, he supported me.

He Brought Me Out To Pizza

But if you were to ask me what I most remember Dad for, I will say, “He brought me out for pizza.”

Dad spent enormous time with me.

Each day, when I was a young boy, we’d jog together. He wasn’t a great jogger mind you. All he did was jog around his car a few times. After the jog, he’d sit down and I’d sit on his lap—and we’d read the paper together. Not the front page, or the business section, or the sports page—but the comics page. He’d read it for me and explain why it was funny. Every single day. As a boy, I remember looking forward to spending time with him each night.

And every Saturday afternoon, he’d say, “Bo, let’s go out”. We’d go for a pizza. A hotdog-on-a-stick. A bag of peanuts. An ice cream cone. We’d also go to a toy store, play with the toys together without buying a single thing. I didn’t mind. My hands may have been empty but my heart was filled with Dad’s love.

He knew I loved pizza.

So when Shakeys opened for the first time in the Philippines, he said he’d bring me there. The problem was that it opened in faraway Angeles, Pampangga. But to him, that was no problem at all. He drove me there just so that I could eat pizza.

It’s true. At the end of one’s life, you’re not remembered by your great achievements. The house you built. The job you had. The money you earned.

At the end of your life, you’ll be remembered by how you loved in small ways. Whether you brought your son for pizza or not.

My father did.

I remain your friend,

Bo Sanchez

PS. Here’s a letter I wrote to Dad.

Dad, I’ll miss you.
I’ll miss cutting your fingernails and toenails.
I’ll miss our hugs together.
Dad, thank you for loving me in the way only you could have done.
You supported me in my work as a Preacher and Leader. No matter how crazy my ideas were, you were there behind me. Thank you for believing in me so much.
Dad, thank you for spending time with me when I was a little boy.
Thank you for letting me sit on your lap, reading the Comics page for me each night. Thank you for bringing me to the toy store. Thank you for the hotdog. The ice cream cone. The pizza.
Hey, you're back. The man before the accident. This time, perfected.
You can see beautifully again. All the colors, the beauty, the brightness.
You can talk clearly again—no longer the jumbled words you spoke for 11 years.
You can work again. (Do they need your accounting skills there?)
You can jog again.
Welcome back Dad.
I love you!


How Radical Is Your Love? A Day In Assisi

By Bo Sanchez (

I love Assisi. It’s simply gorgeous. But I guess you know that I’m biased. (More on this later.)

It’s a 2000-year old Roman city atop a hill, with winding cobbled roads and fortress walls. But it was St. Francis and St. Claire that has made this place extremely special some 800 years ago.

If you’ve been reading my books, you’d know that Francis has such a tremendous impact on my life. Because I was 13 years old when I read his biography, and my life has never been the same. Instantly, I wanted to pray like him, dress like him, sing like him, and serve the poor like him.

After reading his life story, I gave away my clothes to the poor, and welcomed street kids and abandoned elderly people at home—giving my mother one terrible headache after another. I also tried to mimic his “beggar look”, which didn’t make me very popular with girls, but I figured that was the idea. (I called it an anti-attraction device. As if I needed it.)

In the meantime, I lived and served in the slums. Like Francis, I preached in the streets, befriending bums, addicts, gamblers, and alcoholics. I will never forget living in a tiny room with 9 people, sharing a muddy toilet with four other families.

Eighteen years later, with my friends who also loved Francis, we built Anawim, a home for the abandoned elderly built on a 5-hectare property. I lived there with the poor for three whole years, until I finally got married. We named our Anawim chapel St. Francis of Assisi Chapel, and his brown statue is on the left side of the altar.

As you can see, Francis turned my life upside down.

Visiting his hometown—where everything took place—felt like going home.

I prayed at the tiny chapel that he built with his own hands, after he heard God tell him, “Rebuild my Church”. (Much later, Francis realized that God wasn’t referring to the tiny, rundown chapel—but the people themselves.)

Can you imagine?

Francis changed my life—and the lives of countless others who fell in love with God because of him.

One simple life, lived radically, can bless the world.

Friend, your life can do the same. By the way you live, you can change the lives of many people.

But you need to live radically.

Unless you do, nothing much will happen.

Ask yourself: How radical is my love?

To Succeed In Life, You Need To Use Your Failures

From Pisa To Sienna To Assisi
By Bo Sanchez (from

From our hotel, the leaning tower of Pisa was a stone's throw away. It was utterly beautiful; I kept walking to it just to stare at it one more time.

As a child, I loved reading about the leaning tower of Pisa.

It was an odd monument. It was so unique, Leonardo da Vinci used it for his experiments on the law of gravity.

And there it was, right in front of me, in all its failed glory.

Because that’s what it was: A giant failure of the grandest proportion. This cathedral bell tower built 700 years ago began “sinking” on one side a few millimeters each year, causing it to lean. Efforts to repair the tower’s foundation were also dismal failures—the tower kept on leaning on its side.

Friends, I can imagine how many sleepless nights the leaning tower gave its builders, architects, designers, owners, contractors, and engineers down through the centuries. When you think about it, the tower was one failure after failure after another failure.

But precisely because of this failure, it has become a phenomenal success. Because of its oddity, for centuries now, millions of tourists have visited her—making Pisa a very prosperous city. If the tower didn’t “fail” and instead stood straight, it would just be one of the many bell towers in Italy—nothing special at all.

Lesson? I’m sure you have already failed many times in many areas of your life: Family failures, job failures, spiritual failures…

Friend, if you want to be a great success, don’t avoid failures. Instead, use them. When you’re able to use your failures, you bless the world with your unique gift.

As a child, I was sexually molested. As I grew up, I developed a sex addiction. I wish these tragedies never happened to me. But God has healed these wounds. And today, I’ve used these failures to bless the world. I allow my wounds to heal others who have also been abused. I preach about my experience, and written this part of my life in a book (entitled, Your Past Does Not Define Your Future) which is blessing thousands.

From Pisa, we visited Sienna and prayed with St. Catherine. And as we walked out of the city, that was when we failed miserably: We got lost! Imagine 70 people walking around aimlessly in the city.

We lost 3 hours of our day being lost.

After asking for directions and a couple of phone calls, we finally packed a public bus to where our tourist bus was parked.

Great failure, right?

Yes and No.

Because as I told you, my pilgrims are pilgrims, not tourists.

One of our pilgrims was a Mother Superior of the Poor Claires. She was visibly tired walking. But I heard her say with a huge smile, “I will not let this—or anything else—destroy my day.”

Wow. What spunk. What spirit.

Everyone in the group used the failure of getting lost to chisel the character of Jesus in their souls.

We rode our bus with great delight.

After two hours of driving, it was already dark when we entered the enchanting town of Assisi—one of my most favorite spots on planet earth.

I’ll tell you more about it next time.

Find God In Unexpected Places

From Nice, France, To Pisa, Italy
By Bo Sanchez

This is ironic.

Because our pilgrim group was going to Rome, our bus had to pass the French Riviera and stay one night in Nice. Does that place ring a bell?

I don’t know about you, but I only hear “French Riviera” when I read about Hollywood stars taking vacations there. And right next to Nice is Monaco and Monte Carlo, very famous for its casinos, glamour, and Grand Prix racing.

From the French Riviera, we crossed the Italian border, and by late evening, we entered the old town of Pisa—and spent the night there too. Yes, the one with the famous leaning tower. (I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow.)

But as this was part of our road journey, we had to pass these “worldly places” and find God in them too. We could of course have taken a plane and “jumped” from one holy city to another. For example, we could have flown from Fatima and jumped to Lourdes, and from Lourdes hopped to Rome.

But that wouldn’t reflect real life.

Because human life consists of the sacred and the secular. Not everything we do is outwardly religious.

But here’s what I’ve realized: As we mature in our spirit, these boundaries blur. The mature Christian sees everything as sacred.

Why? Because God is everywhere.

Let me say something shocking here: A spiritually mature person is equally at home in her prayer meeting and doing her laundry; She is spiritually at home attending Holy Mass and shopping in a mall. Why? Because if God is her home, and if God is everywhere, then she is at home everywhere.

As heretical as this may sound, how does one know if a prayer meeting or Mass becomes “effective” in our lives? Only if they train our spiritual eyes to recognize the same Presence of God in other people, in nature, especially in the poor, and in ourselves.

Of course, someone could quote my words above out of context and say “Bo is telling us not to go to Mass anymore”. On the contrary, I believe it is our highest praise. But unless you’re a monk, you can’t stay in church 24 hours a day.

Friend, do you find God in your job? In the mall? In the gym? In the restaurant? In the movie house?

Concentration Camp survivor Victor Frankl talks about another woman in the prison with him who knew she was dying. She spoke about the one thing that gave her joy each day—a tree outside her window. It gave her so much comfort. The woman said that she spoke to the tree each day—and the tree spoke to her. She said that before her days in prison, she never had the time to see how beautiful something as simple as a tree is. It was God’s Presence, God smiling at her.

Friend, you and I are so busy, we no longer see God in the simplest things. But if we look deeply, in these simple things, we see God smiling at us.

So smile. He is smiling at you.

"Is Your Lamp Lighted?"

My Friend Emy Serafica Preaches To Me One Last Time
By Bo Sanchez

When I was 14 years old, I led the first ever prayer meeting of the Light of Jesus Community. My family was there, and so were twenty other people. Looking back, it was pretty comic. Why would a bunch of grown-ups follow a kid in a crummy tee shirt, jogging pants, and sandals? Especially a kid who watched Voltes V and even memorized its theme song? But that was what happened.

A few weekly prayer meetings more, Emy Serafica walked through the door for the first time. A tall, lanky fellow with a strong chin and broad smile, he looked like a 70’s actor. Not matinee idol material, but those guys with character roles. Like he could be the buddy of the main star or something like that.
We learned that Emy was a natural leader. A salesman by profession, he was also an eloquent speaker and read the Bible like crazy. Soon, Emy became one of our “Elders”. I shared the pulpit with him and people enjoyed his preaching. If you’re my age, and you caught Jimmy Swaggart preach on TV, that was Emy’s preaching style. Fiery, dramatic, and powerful.

I remember something unique about his talks: They usually had three main points.

I personally enjoyed listening to him preach.

Though I was still his leader, Emy preached better than me. Naturally, my mother will object to that statement with the violence of a volcano erupting after 900 years of dormancy. But I really think he preached better than me at that stage because he was much older (he was 32 and I was 15) and more experienced.

When I turned 18 years old, I stopped studying and worked full-time for the community. And so did Emy. (Just as a side note, in case there are kids reading this who might get funny ideas, I eventually went back to college and finished my Philosophy degree and even took up Masters in Theology.)

The community rented an apartment as an office. To work more closely together, Emy and his wife Lydia moved next door and made it their home.

Yes, Emy and I were not only co-leaders, he was my dear friend. I remember the many nights we swapped stories, we debated about the Bible, and we shared dreams together.
As the years went by, Light of Jesus grew in number, and I asked Emy to lead one of our 5 sub-groups.

One day, at the end of a leader’s retreat, we had a commitment ceremony.

Before it began, Emy called me to a corner of the room and asked, “Bo, is this a commitment to the community or to God? What if God calls me elsewhere?” I told him that it was a commitment first of all to God, but it was also a commitment to community “as long as God tells you to stay here.” He thanked me and joined the commitment ceremony.

But deep inside, I already knew he wasn’t going to stay long.

True enough, a few months after, he asked me if we could chat.

He said he felt God was leading him to leave the community. He was also bringing with him twenty members of his sub-group to form a protestant church.

Leaving the community was one thing. But I was shocked that he was taking along my members—my friends! And I was doubly shocked that they were leaving the Catholic Church.

I felt numb. But I still wished him the best.

A few days after, I stood in front of our entire community of over 100 people and I had to break the agonizing news to them. I was 21 years old at that time and life didn’t prepare me for announcements like this.

“One of our Elders, Emy Serafica, is leaving the community,” I said, pausing amidst gasps of shock around me, “and twenty of our members are joining him. They’re forming a new protestant church…”

People couldn’t believe the news. And I understood what they were feeling. How could this happen to our little, cozy, tight, loving group? People began to sob right in front of me. Friendships were torn. Even some families were divided. Spasms of pain rippled through that crowd.

But I asked everyone to pray for blessings for them and to love them as our brothers and sisters in Christ. I asked them to greet them and to talk to them.

A week later, I decided to visit Emy in his new church.

His members were there—our former members. They were excited and happy, sweeping and cleaning their new rented hall that was to be their church.

I told them that even if we weren’t anymore in one group or even in the Catholic Church, we’d always be friends. We ended by praying together, hugging each other.

I became busy and I lost contact with Emy for many years.

In the meantime, the Light of Jesus community went about their work for God. We grew by leaps and bounds, expanding to different ministries and territories.

Fourteen long years later, I met his wife Lydia. She came to see me to sell life insurance. After buying a plan from her, I asked her, “How’s Emy doing?”“

Many years ago, our church disbanded. Emy is back as a salesman. He’s no longer preaching, Bo.”

Instantly, I felt as though a knife stabbed my chest. I’m a preacher and I knew what Emy was feeling. For a preacher not to preach anymore is like an old lamp left in a dark corner, unlighted, collecting dust and rust, never used. I felt sad for such a wasted gift. Emy was such a good preacher.

I told her it would be great to see Emy again.

And a few weeks later, Emy and I met finally. After so many years. He had more white hair but his smile was as broad as ever. We hugged each other for a long time.

And in expressions deeper than any words can ever say, we forgave each other for the pain of the past.

As we talked and laughed together, I couldn’t help but think. I wondered what would have happened if he didn’t leave. Would he still be my partner-in-ministry to this day, preaching God’s Word? And would I still be personally enjoying and benefiting from his preaching? I brushed these thoughts aside.

But it was he who brought up a desire to serve again.

“Bo, I have these things I’ve written—nothing doctrinal, I assure you. Do you think it can be published?”

“Let me have a look at it,” I said. But he never gave it to me.

As months went by, Lydia would attend our prayer meetings, and once or twice, Emy would join her. I would bump into him at different times. I’m not sure of this, but I felt that he was carrying a sense of regret or shame in him. Deep down, I felt he still wanted to go back and serve God through preaching again.

A few weeks ago, I heard the news.Emy Serafica had a massive heart attack. My friend was gone at the young age of 57.

I visited his wake and asked his wife the one burning question in my mind, “Lydia, did Emy ever preach again?”

“A few months ago, he was invited by a small prayer group. Yes, he preached again. He gave them four talks, one for each month.”

I smiled. The lamp was taken out of the darkness, dusted, cleaned, polished, and lighted again.

I will miss that broad smile of Emy. I will miss his preaching. Too bad I wasn’t there to listen to his last talks.

But then it struck me. Emy did preach to me one last time.And he did it through his death.

And like the Emy I used to know, he preached three major points to me…

The First Point: Life is very short.

The Second Point: Conflicts, divisions, fights—the deepest and most hurting—don’t matter at death. They cease to exist. From the perspective of eternity, all conflicts and fights are petty. They’re washed away by time. One step after death’s door, we’ll all be laughing with our enemies—laughing at how petty we were.
I’m thankful that before Emy stepped in death’s door, we were able to have that laugh this side of earth.

The Third Point: I realized that I don’t want to live a life of regret. Because life is very short, I will use my Lamp and light it until the last breath of my soul.

Friend, what is your lamp?

I believe God has given every human being a particular lamp. It’s the primary language of your soul. Some call it your Sacred Contract. Your core gift to the world.

For me it’s preaching. And writing. For others, it’s cooking, technology, business, singing, counselling…

You may be one of those who know what their lamp is.

Then there’s only one question left to ask. Is your lamp lighted?



By Bo Sanchez (

“Ask, and it will be given to you.” – Matthew 7:7

Do you want french fries with that?

Pretty simple question.But because of that one single line, a burger chain adds $20 million to its annual profits each year. From one tiny question!

And if you order a Coke, the girl behind the counter has been trained to ask, “Large?”

Again, that second question adds millions and millions to their bottom line.

Don’t be afraid to ask.

Unless you learn to ask, you will never be successful in life.

Ask for advice. Ask for a date. Ask for a referral. Ask for a sale.

Salesmen know that if they ask 100 people to buy their product, only 10 say yes. Others get discouraged and look for another job. Top salesmen are energized and ask 1000 people—so 100 people will buy.

Because I run non-profit organizations that spend millions for the poor and the work of evangelization, I’ve learned to ask. That’s why the Kerygma Family which supports our work has expanded all over the world. (If you haven’t joined, please do so: Log onto See, I’m asking again!)

Don’t be afraid to ask. Bo S.

Make a list of what you want in life. Start asking!


Because Husbands Aren’t Loving Enough

By Bo Sanchez

Two days ago, I had an ecumenical meeting with the Philippine President Gloria and various religious leaders in the country (even Muslim leaders).

That was where I spoke to Bishop Ruben Abante, the head of the Alliance of Baptist Churches in the Philippines. We were talking about how to solve the problems of the world. Shucks.

That was when Bishop Ruben gave me a word about families that blew my mind.
He said, “Brother Bo, the Bible says in Ephesians 5:25, ‘Husbands, love your wives, and wives submit to your husbands.’ Have you ever wondered why the Bible doesn’t say, ‘Wives, love your husbands?’” “

Why?” I asked.

The Bishop explained to me that the responsibility to love the family rests on the husband's shoulder. The wife and the kids are only to respond to that love. In the same way that the Bible says in 1 John 4:9 (my life verse) “We love because He first loved us,” we respond to God’s love for us.

That was powerful.

I began to reflect on all the broken families I’ve counselled through the past 28 years of my life. Most of them (not all) were broken because the father didn’t love enough. And as I reflect on all the broken people I’ve counselled, I can see the same pattern. In most of these individuals (again, not all), I see the lack of a loving father in that person’s life.

Fathers, you have a pivotal role in the life of your wife and children. You are to aggressively, assertively, deliberately love them—and they will respond.

But the good Bishop was not finished. He said, “Why didn’t God say, ‘Husbands, submit to your wife?’” “

Why?” I asked again.

He said that once that love is there, submission is the natural response. He asked, “Why is there so rebellion and disobedience among children today?” He explained that kids need to see their mother submit to their father as a model to follow. (We didn’t have time to talk about situations where the man of the house doesn’t love. Should the wife still submit? That difficult question I hope to answer it in another article.)

But let me share with you my experience.

I love my wife. I do it aggressively, assertively, and deliberately.

And she submits to my leadership. I have a vision for the family and I’m bringing my family to that vision—and she supports me.

But what does that mean in daily life?

That I’m king and she’s my slave?

Gosh, you should visit my home.

Because I love her, I want to serve her. And because she follows already my general direction, I realize that 90% of life’s decisions are about the trivial stuff. Because I love her, it’s my joy to say, “Yes” to her. So in reality, I follow her 90% of the time! She isn’t my slave. She is the queen I pamper.

That, my friends, is marital headship-submission in daily life.

It is with this note that I greet you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

May your families be filled with love.

Husbands, take responsibility in filling your family with love.

Wives, support and submit to your husband.

And together, we can fill the world with God’s love.

I remain your friend,

Bo Sanchez

In the year 2007, I want to help you with your family life. I know that can help you. I will provide you with more practical teaching on how you can become a better husband or wife, father or mother. In fact, I’m excited that our weekly FEAST will be launched very soon, and you can receive these video talks. Through these weekly talks, you will receive nourishment for your spirit. If you haven’t signed up as a member of, please do so and get ready to be blessed by a tidal wave of spiritual blessings for you and your family. Donations are totally optional. But if you decide to financially support our ministry of sharing God’s love to others, I’ll be mailing you a Christmas gift: my Life Dreams Success Journal (to help you write a vision for your life) and other surprise goodies as my way of saying “Thank You” for being my partner. Log on now!