Monday, April 8, 2013

OFW's As Mirror

by Bro. Eddie C. Villanueva

Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) scattered around the world is estimated to be over 10 million. With a population of 93 million, this number of OFW translates to over 1/10 of our people. Some have found permanent employment; others are not as fortunate. In Canada alone, stock estimate of Filipinos as of December 2011 is at 842,000, data from the Commission on Filipinos Overseas.

Filipino employees – whether knowledge-based or skills-based – are known among foreign employers for their hard work and professionalism. In many fields, OFWs are top-of-the-mind choices.

Hard work has defined Filipinos.

In our culture, we refer to hard work as “kayod-kalabaw.” Kalabaw or carabao is the Philippines’ national animal because it is the ever-helpful partner of our farmers in their hard work to plant and harvest rice. Historically, carabaos were also the mode by which farm products were brought to the market. The Philippines is an agriculture country.

Meanwhile, professionalism has also been a noted characteristic of our people. The Filipino professionalism is best described by how defines “professionalism:”

“Behaving in a correct way at work and doing your job well.”

Filipinos generally respect their superiors in the work place and are dependable team-players. They work to get the job done.

Hard work and professionalism are Biblical. These are characteristics that are often reminded by God Himself or His servants in the Bible.

Daniel 6:3 (New King James Version): “Then this Daniel distinguished himself above the governors and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him...”

Ecclesiastes 9:10: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going.”

1 Corinthians 10:31: “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

Bangon Pilipinas (Rise, Philippines) Movement continues to salute all our OFWs. They bring with them these values of hard work and professionalism. Outside the country, they serve as the mirrors that reflect the high level of excellence among Filipinos. We continue to hope that our OFWs would be accorded not only the protection that they need, but also the honor that they truly deserve.

Mabuhay, OFWs!

Shalom! Shalom!

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