A Thought On Parenting, Leadership And The Power Of Presence


Today includes three intertwined events: Alexa’s “Buwan Ng Wika” presentation, a prayer rally for my persecuted Mayor uncle and my dad’s Birthday. All three of these events overlap around the idea of presence and the power it holds in relationships.

I am blessed to have a father who was good at what he did. Whether it’s in the area of parenting, mentoring, preaching, leading, administrating and hundreds of different things. But on this day, I want to honor him for one thing- being an expert at being present.

I don’t remember one single time that my dad wasn’t there as a father, pastor or businessman. He was and is there for me and my siblings. He picked me up when I was dead drunk in a God-forsaken carpark. He raised a church of 80 members to 500 by being present. He leads and manages Alphacrest and Big Heart by walking around and making his presence felt.

My dad, Bong Mabilog, has mastered the art of being present. Why? Because he knows how powerful that is. And I have now understood that as well through the example my dad has set.

That’s why today, I know that when my daughter has a “Buwan Ng Wika” presentation (for foreign readership, it’s an academic celebration of the language of Filipino topped with presentations by kids) I have to be there. No matter what. So here I am right now. I’m squeezing in this article, 4 deadlines and a one on one discipleship meeting in one hour. Why? Because I had to block off half the afternoon for my daughter’s presentation.

Being there will cost you no doubt. It will be hard. But it is worth fighting for. Why? Because presence is powerful.

Being there will cost you no doubt. It will be hard. But it is worth fighting for. Why? Because presence is powerful.

Think of our heavenly Father who knows the power of presence. In Isaiah 41:10, He promises us, “fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Jesus also knew that importance and promised that He will be with us to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:20).

Presence is powerful in parenting, relationships, leadership. And presence means more than physical appearance. It’s being present physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually.

The world needs more dads, leaders, friends, executives, bosses who will choose to be present. Who will be there no matter what the cost. It’s choosing to be there for family, friends and followers even if it means having to push our boundaries.

This afternoon, my dad will be joining a prayer rally for my uncle Mayor Jed Mabilog. The mayor has been the butt of a lot of ridicule, accusation and intrigue. That’s another example of how my dad understands the power of presence. My dad definitely has better things to do than to attend a prayer rally, but he knows what matters. It’s family. My uncle isn’t a business agenda or a political motive for him. He’s family.

And my dad knows being there for family is important. Like he was there for me and Ces when we were starting off shaky in our marriage. How he is there for our local church Victory Iloilo even if he’s no longer the senior pastor. How he’s there for every friend and employee.

Why? Because his presence is powerful. Guess what? So is yours. Maximize the power of your presence. Who can you be there for today? Go and be there for them.

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