Ru dela Torre was the cool guy who had everything – women, money, success. But one day, he lost everything. In this one-on-one interview, Ru dela Torre recalls his journey to true significance and how he found his greatest need in Jesus.
Q: What was life like before knowing Jesus?
Ru: I used to live life according to the world’s standards. I was consumed with what our culture dictated as the normal life. I used to believe that one’s goal in life was simply to:
- Excel in school. Graduate with honors. Get good grades and have a better shot at landing a job in the future.
- Have girlfriends in order to get “in” the boys’ club. The “more the merrier” meant me getting the thumbs up sign from my best buds.
- Have a car. Have a house. Get a wife. Have kids. Have grandchildren. Then die.
And I was well on my way to becoming all these. I thought I was the luckiest guy in the world because I had the following at age 24: 23 ex girlfriends, 1 hottie girlfriend, a cum laude medal from the University of Santo Tomas and a silver medal from Ateneo de Manila for my Master’s Degree in Business Administration, 1 super black sporty car, 1 fat bank account, 1 thriving business and a good paying job. And an ego as huge as the Titanic.
But all of these were not enough. I was constantly looking for the next high. I was unsatisfied . . . unfulfilled. I was bored.
Ru: In January 2004, I lost my business, my job and my girlfriend in three consecutive weeks. I was shattered. I was lost . . . depressed. I didn’t know what to do. From lucky, I became a loser. Until I found Christ. When I saw what Christ did for me at the cross, I realized His great love for me. This love made me understand that Jesus is worth my all. He gave His best first. He loved first. And I wanted to give him my life too. So that day, I surrendered and gave my life to Him.
I found a new identity. From loser, I came to know that I am loved by God.
Q: How has knowing Christ altered your life?
Ru: From a self-centered, egocentric life, I prayed to God for a God-centered, purpose-driven life. I wanted to use my talents, my resources, my gifts and my life to serve and glorify him. That’s why I sought for a lot of grace to obey and honor Him.
In February 2004, just a-month-old Christian, God asked me to share to some 40 young people about my decision to seek God with all I’ve got that year. I opted to abstain from having a girlfriend and I signed a contract called the Manifesto with God. That day, 90% of the crowd signed too.
In 2006 it evolved into a movement, as churches and schools started inviting us to share with them this wonderful contract. In 2007, we were able to reach (by God’s grace) some 12,000 young people. This paved the way for us to be hailed as a national finalist to the 2007 TAYO (Ten Outstanding Youth Organizations).
Today, the movement lives on. And thousands more are making the commitment to stay pure and put God first in their lives. An estimated 500,000 young people all across the nation have heard about the movement, and a good percentage of them signed up for the covenant.
I became a youth pastor in 2005 and the Lord also used me to write books. I’ve written four books: A Date with The One, Road Trip, Back on Track and Refuel.
Now, I’m living my best life. Truly, I found life when I found Christ.
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