TESTIMONY OF AN ENGINEERED LIFE
(Personal Testimony of Romeo Agustin)
Written and Edited by Marie Agustin
I had a very well established engineering career in the Philippines. With an established network, just a call on a phone, I will surely get jobs in either design or construction… and in came the Canadian dream.
My journey in establishing a credential in Canada was not easy. It was humbling and frustrating. I went through rigid application process. The engineering organization assessed me of several technical exams to practice my profession in Canada – the same profession which I was doing in several countries for more than 15 years. With pride and self-reliance, I challenged the exams right away.
Have you experienced trying to show one thing, but your heart is saying a different thing? Before the exams, although I verbally said God would lead me and guide me, deep inside I thought my experiences and talents were enough to carry me through. Deep inside, I relied heavily on myself rather than God. I called this a boastful try, and my pride paid the price.
What happens when we get a big head? The head does not work properly: that exactly what happened. I failed one exam.
When I knew that I got a failing mark, I just couldn’t believe it. I got critical, frustrated, angry and depressed. For a week, I was like a pregnant cat who had trouble delivering her babies. Imagine compacting those kittens in one small belly.
But God’s grace is sufficient (2 Cor. 12:9). I couldn’t have lasted that terrible week of my life and kept my wits intact, if not for the grace of God exhibited in a lot of ways. I experienced God’s grace as I’ve never felt before. There was a remarkable sense of God’s provision through those difficult times. My family’s support was tremendous. I received not only comforting words from my wife but also from my children. Imagine my sons and daughters speaking like adults and I was like a child – that was awesome. Many friends – B.S. group members, officemates, the company I was working, old friends from overseas, church mates – were all very supportive and I couldn’t explain their support with words. So many “grace” … so many “grace” in various forms.
The more I focus on God; I learned to “Let go” and “Let God”. Before I would say, “ No Retreat, No Surrender”. But now, I chant on the phrase “Surrender, Surrender – to God and God alone”. It was when I started to surrender everything to God that the floodgates of heaven unfolded and I could experience God’s strength in me.
I was blessed with the opportunity to take the exam again. When I was preparing for the exam the second time, anxiety crept in from time to time. The problem was that I was so concerned about myself. I struggled on the fear of failing again. I realized that God has plans for us: we just do our best for God and He will reveal His glory on it. If I focus on God rather than myself, I am at peace and God’s comfort is in me.
In this experience, I validated that although we may have human responsibility, this does not mean that such effort is a requirement to gain success. Success only comes from God and is all God’s work. Our effort is simply an act of obedience on what God wants us to do. There may be times that we are required to wait on God. Waiting does not mean a total inactivity; in fact one dimension of waiting is prayer. As we communicate closely with God, His promises sink deeper in our hearts. We experience the Holy Spirit as Jesus promised, “that when He leaves, He will send us the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, to comfort and guide us” (John 14:16, 26). The more I submit to God and totally surrender my concerns and myself to Him, the more God allows me to realize how insignificant my talents and knowledge are, if I rely on them alone.
As I took the exam, I felt the power of God working. I know that a lot of people were praying for me that exact time. There is the surge of inner strength that I know is not from me. I completed the examination, all four long problems just exactly within the time limit of three hours. It was a photo finish like in a race. I know this is all from God through the power of prayers. When the results came after two months of waiting, I got a passing mark. Praise be to God alone.
God uses circumstances to bring us closer to Him. Sometimes He uses failures to allow us see new perspective in life. If we failed, we should not think ourselves as a failure because failure is just an event in our life. God uses similar events to move us closer to Jesus and to see God’s love and power in every circumstance that He allowed.
I therefore confirmed that there is no such thing as humanly engineered life. There is no amount of engineering and control that can make things in our life work successfully. We cannot rely on our knowledge and strength, for it will not save the day. Without relying on God’s great control, I couldn’t have survived this trial. I know I still have long ways to go in developing my faith in God. But I know my Saviour and Lord Jesus Christ will guide and direct me through the end. Praise be to God!
'WE overcame satan by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony'. My friend and sister in Christ watch out for missing letters. The first sentence you have an (a)missing!!! Always re-check your work. Remember this in love Marie that "correction is not rejection", okay!! Otherwise a good testimony; thanks for sharing with us. God bless love from