On AJ Rafael, and Better Days

 

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AJ Rafael @ Teatrino

Today was such a surreal day. I never thought this day would come, a time where I would be able to meet people I look up to so much, people who I only thought were accessible only virtually. But God had a different plan in mind. Something I believe He did because I made that decision to see the brighter things in life, because I chose to be happy despite adversary, because I opted to be strong in my Lord, my God, my Rock.

It is unbelievable when you experience the grace and love of God expressed in so many ways you never thought possible. Tonight was the perfect example. I went there with an expectant heart but not expectant enough, I’m afraid. I thought I was just going to a show, and I would be able to meet AJ Rafael afterwards. It was everything and more! But the whole night I was so calm and relaxed, taking in everything that was happening. Experiencing happiness this way was beautiful, and I’m so thankful that God is restoring me and my optimism – something I had lost for a while.

Darkness is never a friend, and I realized that I had been so blind to many opportunities, many sources of happiness because I became comfortable in the dark.

I.

Meeting AJ Rafael was just indescribable. I almost cried when he sang his last song, when we all sang to encourage him, and when he was so honest with all of us.

This man is so down-to-earth, so sweet and gentle, so passionate about what he loves to do. The only thing I could tell him was “Promise you’ll come back?” which could be interpreted two ways: meaning he’d come back to Manila, and he’d come back as an artist – stronger and better. I know he will.

II.

I had the opportunity to bless QUEST and Julianne with a prayer – something I love to do with people I am gratuitous towards because I find that it is the best way I can express it. I prayed for them, and let them know how much of an impact they are making in our lives, in my life. To be encouraged through songs and through their lives, it is a beautiful and wonderful thing to learn from.

I had a million things to tell them, but I chose just to say “thank you.” Though it will never suffice, I wanted to let them know how they have been influential to me, and the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity had come to me. I did not want to waste any time at all, and so I took it all in.

III.

You can be starstruck in so many different ways, but at the end of the day you will see how you struck these people with your presence and the manner of which you return the favor.

AJ Rafael, I just want to say how moved I was by you and your music. I realize that your hiatus isn’t such a sad thing, when we know that it will just make you stronger and more improved. I’m looking forward to the day you find your fire to be greater than it was before, and you’ll be ready for everything the world throws at you. In the meantime, we’ll be patiently waiting for you. We won’t let go, I promise.

 

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The lovely Yeng Constantino serenading the crowd with AJ.

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Kris Lawrence, AJ Rafael, Jay-R performing their collaboration, “You’re the One.”

The man who made it all possible, Quest.

The man who made it all possible, Quest, and the velvet-voiced songstress, Julianne.

The "Amazing" Andrew Rhim

The “Amazing” Andrew Rhim

Thanks to my brother for the shots! More photos from the show here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/miggdc/sets/72157645476998905/

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