Venus Raj is a Filipina television and film actress, model, and TV host who is a five-time co-winner as PMPC Star Awards Best Morning Show Host (shared with Umagang Kay Ganda hosts).
Venus is also a beauty queen, having won the titles of Miss Philippines Earth 2008, Bb. Pilipinas Universe 2010, and 4th Runner Up Miss Universe 2010 besting eighty-five gorgeous, smart, talented, statuesque women from all over the world. She also won the awards for Best in Long Gown, Best in Philippine Terno, and was a co-winner for Miss Friendship which is uncommon to all be given to one major title-holder.
Butterflyinthespring had this chat with her:
BUTTERFLYINTHESPRING (BITS): Is there a message which you think God has placed in your heart to share with others?
VENUS RAJ (VR): When I was not a Christian yet, I had several relationships and thought that the vacuum in my heart can be filled by having a relationship kasi I grew up not knowing my biological father. There is that longing to really know or have someone….to be in my life. Now the Lord is bringing women to me and I think they are experiencing the things that I have experienced in the past. Some of the highlights of the topics we talk about is relationships, struggling with purity, and other areas of being a young woman. It’s also connected to my own story.
It’s amazing how the Lord is, He will allow you to go through some tough journey but at the end of it, He will be glorified by that story.
BITS:: He’s using it particularly right now in order to help the women He’s now sending to you.
VR: Yes. Yes.
BITS: When you say that the women you talk to are struggling with relationships, is it mostly boy-girl relationships?
VR: Yes, about 90%. They want someone or may nanliligaw or yung iba may boyfriend na or yung iba may have crossed that line of premarital sex already. I’m not proud of sharing my failures in the past but I am proud to say that the Lord changed me; and how He changed me in that journey, I can also share with other women who are experiencing the same struggles.
If you are not focused on the Lord, if you look at people or compare yourself with other people, there will be many insecurities you will realise. You will be disappointed. Why is that person like that and I’m like this? Focus on what the Lord has given you and maximise that. At the end of everything, whatever gift that the Lord has given you, He will ask you to account for that like in the Parable of the Talents, “What have you done with the talent that I have given you?” I think it’s really important for young men and women at this stage in their lives to surrender their lives to Jesus because the pressure of the world is so much, so much… sometimes even the brand of clothes or shoes you wear, the gadgets that you have, or the school you go to, even that parang ginagawa nang sukatan ng pagkatao o halaga ng isang babae o lalaki. If you don’t go to a sikat na school, they will look down on you pero hindi naman yan ang sukatan ng pagkatao natin. It doesn’t matter who the people are around you. What’s important is Who you belong to. If you belong to Jesus, that’s the most important.
BITS: That’s key ‘no, to security?
VR: Yes. Even in the daily life. Even if you are studying, you study for the Lord. Because if you study for high grades, if you don’t get high grades, you will get disappointed. If you study because your teacher is your crush, or your crush is in the same classroom, pa’no kung wala na sila? So you will flunk? You’ll get low grades … to the point that you don’t want to go to school anymore. But if you study for the Lord because you want to honour the Lord in everything that you do, then it can be fruitful and you will learn a lot.
BITS: How did you come to that point of knowing God, following Him, understanding His word?
VR: My life was a mess before. Before Miss Universe, there were people who introduced me to the gospel but after Miss Universe, parang feeling ko, “O, I can do it on my own naman pala.” It’s different when you have the success that you’ve been wanting for a long time already. You feel like you can do it on your own, like you don’t need God anymore. Pero time will come that even if you almost have everything— I had a nice paying job before; I had a good-looking boyfriend; I thought my family was okay because I could support them financially and I could help my niece and nephew go to school. But that’s not enough at the end of the day, I felt empty and I felt that these are not the things that would complete me. Hindi talaga. Eventually I resorted to having relationships. I thought since I have a nice job, I should probably have a boyfriend also that would suffice my needs. Parang, “when you have a beauty queen, you should also have a king.”
BITS: To complete the look…
VR: Yes… but times will come na I would really cry in my room and realise these are not the things that complete me, these are not the things that I want. Of course, I was enjoying them because during that time, okay lang, lahat naman ganon ang buhay. Yung friends na nakikilala ko, they’re showing me how to live that kind of life. Pero hindi eh. Iba, iba talaga. My now-dgroup leader, she was so faithful in texting me for more than two years. She would just follow up and send bible verses, quotes… But I would usually just not reply because I knew that I was doing something that was not good and not pleasing to the Lord and I was not yet ready to give up that lifestyle. I was not yet ready to accept Jesus… Baka mamaya hindi na ako pwedeng mag-boyfriend. Then there came a turning point when I came to my dgroup leader, Ate and Kuya (because they were a couple). Kuya said, “Before you talk to us, are you willing to listen to our advice? Or mag-aadvice kami tapos hindi mo rin naman susundin? Let’s not talk anymore if that’s the case because that would be useless, a waste of time. That time, I (tearfully) said, “I’m ready to listen!” I said, “Eto na, dere-derecho na ‘to kay Lord.”
BITS: There was a point of brokenness that opened you up?
[Venus shared something that devastated her. She felt convicted that she was in a situation that compromised on God’s word and the action needed to make her life right with God was painful for her as she had to give up something.]
VR: My drgoup leader said that I can start anew if I accept Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. That was the turning point of me saying, “Yes” to the Lord; not my ways anymore… Ikaw na’ng bahala Lord. If magkaroon ako ng boyfriend in the future, ikaw na ang bahala dyan. Kung wala, just ready my heart to accept Your decision kasi kung ipipilit ko nang ipipilit yung gusto ko at mali na naman yung pupuntahan ko, another heartbreak, another waste of time, waste of effort. Ang daming na-wa-waste if you keep pushing what you want and are not listening to what the Lord wants for you.
BITS: To avoid any error, can you please tell me what was your beauty title?
VR: I was Bb. Pilipinas Universe 2010 and I was Miss Universe 4th Runner-up 2010.
BITS: Wow out of so many women!
VR: Around 89. That time, the seed [of God’s word] was planted but wala pa yung conviction, boldness, obedience, wala e…I was not yet mature but if I were, I could have used that platform.
BITS: But God has another plan !: )
VR: Right [big smile], His plans are way better than my plans.
BITS: Are you asked to speak to groups?
VR: Yes, usually schools
BITS: Where can people reach you?
VR: Through private message to my Instagram “Onlyvenusraj” or through my manager.
BITS: You winning that coveted beauty title, did you have any securities at that time.
VR: Oh yeah, a lot! A lot! A lot of insecurities, that’s why I understand young ladies who have insecurities kasi noon parang feeling ko maitim ako, hindi ako maganda, marami akong pimples. Yung ngipin ko, yung buhok ko etc. But when I came to know the Lord and just reading His word, makikita mo talaga that whatever He wrote there, yun talaga yung totoo. That’s the truth that we are fearfully and wonderfully made and that we are beautiful in His eyes because we are created in His image. Yung insecurities/ lies from the evil one telling you that you are not this, you are not that. You have to do this, you have to do that in order for you to become beautiful, for you to be accepted by society pero those are the lies of the enemy (Satan). Kasi diba the enemy comes only to steal, kill, and destroy, but Jesus came that we may have life and have it abundantly. Satan wants to steal your joy of just worshiping the Lord and feeling content with who you are and accepting who you are.
BITS: This is such a powerful message coming from a beauty queen. I love it. Thank you so much for sharing.
Befitting her name which means “goddess of beauty and love,” Venus who radiates beauty and love has found the God of Love and Beauty which has given her passionate purpose in life.
Thank You, Lord for Venus. Her previous failures and challenges are the very instrument You are using to speak Your truths to women and men who did not see that they are created in Your image and are beautiful in Your sight. Without those failures before You truly grabbed a hold of her heart, she would just be Your beautiful creation but now she is Your beautiful daughter with Your Spirit and truth, Your love and compassion radiating from within. May You continue to guard and guide her, go with her, as she continues to shine brightly for Your glory in Jesus’s name amen.