Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Kids won’t be intimidated by books if, as children’s book author, Robert Magnuson, shares,

“You start them really early. My love for reading began before I could even read. It started with the physical form of the book. Touching the cover, flipping through the pages, basically familiarizing and becoming comfortable with the book as an object for learning.”

This summer, parents can jumpstart their kids’ love for reading. For children ages 6 and below, Hiyas recommends easy-to-read books they’ll surely want to read over and over again:


The Great Duck and Crocodile Race (P150)

Duck and Croc want to race . . . and kids will keep guessing who wins first place. Written and illustrated by Robert Magnuson, this book was honored as One of the Best Reads in the 2012 National Children’s Book Awards.

Boom! Bang! Clang! (P150)

Written in Filipino by radio broadcaster Maloi Malibiran-Salumbides and illustrated by Robert Magnuson, two families of musical instruments clash and create loud, unbearable noise at Barrio Musika but soon learn the value of living in harmony.

Bee Polite (P150)

Buzzing with lessons on when to say “Thank you,” “Please,” and “Excuse me,” Dee the Bee shows that bee-ing polite can be fun and easy. Written by Joyce Piap-Go and illustrated by Maria Cristina Sison, Bee Polite is the second book in the Little Bee Book series.

Porcupirate Plans the Day (P150)

Porcupirate plans his days with all sorts of exciting adventures. But when things don’t go his way, he learns that the greatest adventures can be found where you least expect them. A rhyming read filled with colorful images, Porcupirate Plans the Day is written and illustrated by Robert Magnuson.


Parents play a vital role in helping kids enjoy reading. Robert Magnuson adds, “I buy my son all sorts of books appropriate for his age and make sure to read it with him. We read every night before bedtime. He’s three, so I read while doing a lot of word-pointing. As he becomes familiar with the book, I let him read some words . . . we literally end up reading together.”


All recommended books are available at OMF LIT Bookshop, PCBS, Powerbooks and National Book Store. Hiyas is the children’s book imprint of OMF Literature, the country’s leading Christian publisher. Visit, for more details.


Making a u-turn involves more than just saying the words, “I’m sorry”. Genuine repentance is not apologizing and then swinging back to sin. It is a firm decision to turn away, and never go back to it again.

The following steps describe how making a U-turn is best done:


Admit that you’ve sinned

God knows it and you know it. You went the wrong way and you messed up. Confess it. There is nothing we can hide from God anyways. Be honest and come to Him as you are. There’s no room for pride.

Cry out to God for mercy

A desperate cry is more than lip-service. A heartless sorry does not count for anything. God always looks at the condition of the heart. Being sincerely sorry requires genuine regret. Pain gets into the picture, especially when you realize that you have broken the heart of God.

Accept responsibility for your actions

Facing the consequences of your actions today, no matter how difficult, can save you from facing bigger ones tomorrow if you opt to postpone. Repair damages in as much as you are able. If relationships have been strained, be quick to mend them.

Break free from the clutches of that sin

Whatever happens, decide to say no. Since it took time to form that bad habit, it may also take time to undo it. Temptations will come. When they do, be strong. Ask God for help, and He will lead you to a way out of it.

Put some feet to your faith

Action steps are required. Remember, we don’t want to do the same mistakes again. So the best step is to walk away from the sin, or from anything that causes us to sin. If your sin is engaging in a vice, or  having a relationship with someone who does not love God, or living with a bad habit, then quit it.


Say no to the sin and flee as far as you can, from temptation. The moment you do is when you’ve really repented. No shortcuts. It’s the only way.

But stop right here if you start thinking that these steps are needed for you to receive God’s grace. Again, God’s grace is not something we can earn for our good works. We can even read in Romans 5:8

But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

The initiative to love comes from God. In 1 John 4:19 it is stated quite simply

We love because He first loved us

So male no mistake about it. Even the ability to make the U-turn comes from God.


*taken from Back on Track by Ru dela Torre

ipad_Back on TrackAfter getting on the road with God, what does a young person do when the excitement fizzles and he returns to his rebellious ways? This sequel of the bestselling Road Trip focuses on how grace and repentance can help the lost again find his way back to God.



Married couples don’t have to miss on romance once Valentine’s Day is over. Award-winning author Nelson Dy and his wife Lucy share how everyday can be Valentine’s Day.

How do you spend Valentine’s Day?

Nelson: Every year I would carefully select a Valentine’s card from our favorite bookstore and write lengthily how much I cherish her and how she has blessed my life.

UCM photo of nelson and lucy 101508 

What’s the best thing about being married to your spouse?

Lucy: I come from a huge family and he has to relate with my siblings, in-laws, nephews and nieces!  I can never forget how he made everybody laugh during our family Christmas parties, especially when he performed “Mr. Suave” and last December, Gangnam style! Imagine my husband doing those roles because of his love for me!


What’s the most memorable way you reconciled with your spouse after an argument?

Nelson: Recently, we were about to enjoy breakfast at a hotel, but Lucy wanted to clear the air first from the previous night’s argument. We had a no-holds-barred discussion. We agreed on how to prevent the argument from recurring, including doing our best to idiot-proof our text messages.

Lucy: Whenever there’s some misunderstanding, my husband is very patient in explaining the real issues and how to resolve it. When he says “sorry”, I feel his sincerity and grief.
Nelson_Lucy2How do you keep the romance in your marriage?

Nelson: It is so easy to drag myself home exhausted from work and commute, eat my dinner sullenly, and crash in front of the TV until bedtime. So I have to take the effort to hug and kiss her when I arrive and be all ears for her “kwento” from her day.

Lucy: Nelson and I text each other every day and say simple I love you’s or express our concern for one another.

How can couples celebrate their relationship even after Valentine’s Day?

Nelson: Actually, every day should be a Valentine’s Day. As much as possible, hug and kiss your spouse every day, especially after a long day’s work at the office.

Lucy: I pray for my husband everyday for his safety, success at work and for the protection of our marriage.  I also prepare food varieties that will please my husband. And what beats a good massage after being dog-tired from a long day?

ipad_HoneymoonNelson Dy reveals more on intimacy as a way of life in the Gintong Aklat award-winning, The Honeymoon Never Ends. It is available in paperback at all OMF Lit Bookshops, PCBS and National Bookstores nationwide for P195 and in digital format through Amazon and Flipreads.

International bestselling authors Harold and Darlene Sala almost didn’t make it to the altar on December 23, 1959. Harold had already bought a ring out of his earnings from a repair job and headed to California to see Darlene. When he popped the question, Darlene said “No.” Darlene recalls, “The problem had a lot to do with a lack of communication.” Although they had been together for three years and had a deep love for each other, they weren’t able to freely express their thoughts.


2548820They say that Valentine’s Day is SAD as it stands for Singles Awareness Day. On February 14, singles feel the heightened social pressure to be in a relationship. Not being able to meet this expectation, they struggle with envy over romantic couples and in turn develop a sense of loneliness. Bestselling author Ronald Molmisa tackles how one can be sensationally single on Valentine’s Day.

The discontentment over singlehood is an issue of the heart. Singles assume that they should have a partner and if they don’t, something must be wrong with them. Ronald Molmisa explains, “Huwag mong isipin na kakaiba ka. When you handle singlehood, ilapit mo sa Panginoon ang iyong mga struggles at the same time huwag ka ng magpapaniwala na kailangan may partner ka.”

He also stresses the need to get to know a lot of people in order to have wider social support. Molmisa recommends that singles go out with their friends on Valentine’s Day instead of dwelling on negative thoughts about themselves. “Puwede kang makipagdate sa’yong mga kaibigan na single din. Magandang maramdaman ninyo ang suporta ng bawat isa at masaya din kapag may gimik ang mga magkakaibigan.”


As Valentine’s Day only lasts for a day, Ronald Molmisa reassures singles, “Ano man ang relationship status mo, may magandang plano si Lord sa’yo, so hindi mo kailangan ng ibang tao para sumaya.” Developing oneself spiritually, emotionally and physically must take priority in order to make a mature decision when a possible relationship comes along.

ipad-frame_LovestruckRonald Molmisa offers more insights on singlehood in his bestselling book Lovestruck: Singles Edition. Written in Taglish, he dissects the struggles of singles, offers advice on online romance, and guidance on marriage.  Lovestruck: Singles Edition ranks fifth in the National Book Store Bestsellers List for Philippine Publications. It is available in paperback at all OMF Lit Bookshops, PCBS and National Bookstores nationwide for P75 and in digital format through Amazon and Flipreads.