When we finally got there, Rezza and I drove up the new parking building and strategized how to rush to our seats in the Smart Araneta Coliseum in the shortest time. We knew we missed some of the early performances. We just wanted to make sure we were there to welcome one extraordinary man.
We were there to meet the inspiring man with no arms, no legs and no worries! The powerful Aussie who has travelled the world, his name is Nick Vujicic (pronounced voo-yee-chee-ch , you’re welcome!).
I first heard about Nick Vujicic through emails, photos and videos. And since then, I’ve been a fan. I have his latest book, Unstoppable, and I enjoy reading Nick’s stories. Even in some of the trainings that we conduct, we show videos of Nick to inspire our audiences.
After the jump, I’ll show you a short video for those who don’t know Nick like I do (ehem, first name basis kami, hehehe). And I’ll share what I’ve learned from Nick’s talk.
We took our seats on the 14th row from the front. Thanks so much Cheryl Golangco for getting us choice seats! Christian Bautista sang two praise songs. Together with my wife Rezza, I was very excited and was singing along and just giving thanks for the opportunity to listen to Nick. That’s when the hosts of the night, Rica Peralejo and Judah Paolo, introduced Nick Vujicic!
And from behind the center curtain, two men walked in … well, one man walked in carrying Nick to the table on stage. And it was awesome just seeing Nick. He was wearing a crisp white barong tagalog with its sleeves tucked inward so that the barong hugs his torso. He had his black slacks, not sure if they’re called “short pants”, which revealed his small left foot with two toes.
The audience welcomed him with a very warm round of applause. I added a twirling fist to welcome Nick. And he started strong by welcoming his audience, acknowledging Rebecca (of BeccaMusic) who organized Nick’s trip to the Philippines, wanting to come back to the Philippines next time with his wife and son. Of course, kilig-na-kilig ang audience to hear that Nick loves to come back to the Philippines. He also started telling funny stories and experiences. This got him warmed up with the entire audience. We got hooked.
Here are some of the things I learned from Nick.
a.) Encouragement brings you closer to your goal; Discouragement brings you farther from your goal. Choose to be with encouraging people. Choose to encourage others.
b.) Plant the seeds of truth and love for yourself and for your loved ones. Remind your loved ones how much you love them and how beautiful they are. If you don’t, who will?
c.) What’s worse than have no arms and no legs? FEAR!
FEAR = False Expectations Appearing Real.
Instead, have FAITH = Full Assurance In the Heart of the Truth.
d.) Take small steps in the right direction. No matter how small your steps, keep moving forward towards your goal.
e.) You won’t know what you can achieve unless you try.
f.) Nick’s talk centered on 5 key messages:
1.) Courage, not fear. Courage doesn’t mean not being afraid. It means doing something even when you’re afraid.
2.) Fail? Try again! Failure is education.
Nick told us a heart-warming story about how he made a decision to become a speaker as a teenager. His mom asked him: “What are you going to speak about?” and Nick replied: “I don’t know!” :D . Nick continued to relate how he made 52 calls to different schools to offer to speak. And that his offer was accepted only by the 53rd school … which was 2.5hrs away from home! :D It was both a hilarious and an inspiring story of persistence.
Nick also spoke about suicide, and how we need to watch out for each other to prevent suicide. Nick attempted suicide. But then he remembered his parents and thought: “What’s worse for parents than to have a son with no arms no legs? Answer: for parents to have a son with no arms and no legs and committed suicide.”
He tells people who contemplate suicide:
“If you need your dream to die, let it die, but don’t let it kill you.”
Nick continues: “When I give up a dream, I will find something better.”
3.) Be thankful!
If you’re not happy single, your not gonna be happy married.
I’m happy today because I’m thankful for what I do have now.
the greatest things in life are not things!
It’s time to forgive! Who have you not forgiven yet?
Unforgiveness is like drinking poison hoping the other person will die. It is you who dies when you are unforgiving!
You do not need to be limbless to be broken. Broken is broken. Hope is hope.
You are beautiful!, I love you!
4.) Purpose. Find your purpose! The courage to start starts with purpose! You don’t need courage to win, but to fail.
5.) Obstacles = Opportunities.
Keep taking those small steps in the right direction.
In your journey towards your goal, put faith at first, and faith at last.
There may be a storm in your life now.
But it’s sunny above the clouds.
Soar like an eagle and soar above the clouds!
It was a powerful talk that Nick gave. Rica and Jonah came in to interview Nick for a bit. We saw how spontaneous Nick was. By the way, Rica did a good job too! She did her assignment, she was witty and she kept the conversation going. Rica also described how starstruck she was when she first saw Nick and she wasn’t sure if she could give Nick a high-five and tell him “break a leg!” :D
I told Rezza and a few friends that Nick himself, without even speaking, is such a powerful message! To be without arms and legs and to be traveling the world to evangelize and inspire the world — that in itself is such a powerful message!
That’s how Passive Influence is. Just being yourself, being your great self, without even speaking, you can have such a powerful message to move people.
Bless you Nick Vujicic. Bless you as you evangelize and hundreds of thousands more by being a testament of God’s love!
p.s. I have audio recordings of Nick’s talk at the Araneta Coliseum. I’m having the files cleaned-up for clarity. If you want a copy of Nick’s talk, sign-up for the newsletter and I will announce where to find the audio files when available. Cheers!
p.p.s. I found this video from the CCF YouTube Channel. Be blessed!
p.p.p.s. More photos with Encouraging People from PSI and friends: