I wrote this article for you. No matter who you are, what your background is or what you’re going through right now, You are worth it!

“Kuko na lang yung nakakapit (Hanging by my fingernails)” – This statement perfectly describes the most trying season of my college life in UST.

I was lost back then. I didn’t even have a sense of direction. I was pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science at the UST Faculty of Engineering at that time. I was studying but I didn’t even have the faintest idea what I would do after college or what I wanted to do with my life for that matter.

juan miguel alvarez past lifeThat punk in the middle, that’s me.

I was the guy who sat in the back of the class, sleeping, because I played DOTA or call of duty the whole night. I was the guy who cuts classes to go to Dapitan and play billiards or DOTA in Pacific. I drank a lot of alcohol back then. I would pass out during parties and wake up the next day remembering nothing, total black out. I was that guy!

I failed 3 subjects and my parents threatened to take me out of school.

I was a rebel back then, I was in rebellion against the whole system! It didn’t allow me to explore or learn what I wanted to learn, I didn’t see the reason for studying all these things. School didn’t interest me anymore. I just wanted to skip from one day to the next, drinking with friends, having fun, playing more computer games, spending my days glued to the computer monitor.

Girls that I pursued turned me down left and right. How can they not? I didn’t even like myself so how can others like me? I pitied myself inside, secretly, while trying to play punk-image on the outside. Days passed by in a blur. I was wasting the precious time given to me.

juan miguel alvarez ust

I was tired and weary.

Back then I knew I wanted more. I knew there was something missing in my life.

I started asking God.

I was raised in a Catholic family and my faith had been set from early on. This time though I began to question God. Where are you? Why can’t I see you at work here? I began to isolate myself from the rest of the world. I separated myself from my barkadahan. I started taking walks in the UST field after classes and just started looking at the stars, asking God more questions. I was beginning to search for answers.

I found Him in that silence and I gave up my life to Him in faith.

Then I asked myself what I wanted to do with my life. I found that what I’ve been seeking for in website development. I had this classmate back then with a background in PHP development and I asked him if he could teach me. Every spare time I had, I devoted to studying website development. I sincerely wanted to learn.

I started doing my own codes. And eventually I joined the Faculty of Engineering Website Development team. We even got the chance to do a website project for the UST Office for Admissions. Then projects kept coming, more people were asking for my help.

juan miguel alvarez leader

I started doing something with my life

I knew from then on that I found my passion. I left my old life. I stopped drinking, I stopped pursuing girls and I stopped wasting my time. I didn’t look back; I simply kept on walking forward.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” -Proverbs 3:5-6

juan miguel alvarez potatocodes ideastalk

Changed from glory to glory

Two years had passed and I am now currently working for my own startup company, Potatocodes Website Development and Designs as well as an open community that I have co-founded called Ideastalk Philippines (This blog you’re reading, duh!).

juan miguel alvarez ust graduation was saved!

So basically what I’m trying to say is, cheer up! Your life is not over yet. God has amazing plans for you. Please don’t give up on yourself. Do what you have to do to find God’s voice. Take moonlit walks, stare at the stars if you have too, talk to yourself in the mirror and be weird! Search for God and ask him about the great plans He has for you.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” –Jeremiah 29:11

David a lowly shepherd became king, Mary a simple woman was chosen to conceive Jesus, fishermen, tax collectors and unexpected people became disciples. He can use anyone and do great things with them. We should not limit ourselves to what He can do with our lives. If He used someone like me, He can use you too!

Are you going through hurdles in your life right now? How have you been saved by God? Share your testimonies in the comments section below!