Wednesday, October 29, 2008

food for thought.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: BE THANKFUL


be thankful for your job, your family, your life, your circumstances, your situation, even your problems. remember that even if you think your life sucks and it it's getting really bad, there's always someone out there who has it even worst.

1Thessalonians 5:18 "be thankful in all circumstances."




Tuesday, October 28, 2008

let it go (part 1).

there was a notice on the white board - it said "we're having a yard sale on sunday 10/26 @ 8am", or something to that effect. we were in the process of packing up our stuff to move into our new house(s) when we all realized that before we moved into our new territories, we HAD to get rid of certain things that we didn't want to bring with us anymore. we had about a week to weed through our room to see what we wanted to keep and what we wanted to let go of. others let go of random knick knacks, old clothes, books, even "trash", but some of had to let go of things that were quite precious and had sentimental value to them. weeding through stuff is no fun. i've moved about 4x this year alone (2008) and everytime i've moved, i thrown stuff away, so i thought to myself, i've mastered the art of it already. NOT! it was still a pain in the a** (butt). to top it off, my back was hurting coz of moving and carrying boxes the wrong way so i just wanted to lay down and rest.

sunday came. i woke up early then went to the yard sale. i thought i would stay there for an hour and go to church for the 11 am service. after all, i had only lived in that house for 2 months, so i didn't really have a lot of stuff to sell, except for random toys and my clothes. someone came within the hour and bought everything i had for $10, so i let them have it.

i was getting ready to leave and say good-bye in my head, when i saw all my friends in the yard helping each other out to sell their "things". i had an a-ha! moment and decided to stay, even if i didn't have a reason to be there. i was so compelled as i watched how we all helped each other sell our things while enjoying each others company. when someone came, we'd not only sell our own things but even push the buyers to buy our friends things as well. we'd even jack up the prices so our friends can make more money. and when one was able to make a sale, we were all happy for each other. having friends in the process of letting go made it easier to watch our "personal things" being taken away. i learned 2 lessons that day that spoke to my heart.

Lesson 1: as hard as it was, we all knew that it was necessary to let go for us to be able to move into a new season of our lives. letting go is not easy. letting go of things we've held on to for so long often can cause us heart break. but most of the time it is necessary in order for us to move forward.

it can be as easy as letting go of old clothes, couches, bookshelves. or it can be as hard as letting go of our dreams, emotions, our prayers, even fears and disappointments. it can be as easy as letting go of a toy or as hard as letting a loved one die. we ALL go through the process of letting things go. in the end, we must be able to hold everything with an open hand, because we don't OWN anything, not even our lives. He can give and He can take away.

LESSON 2: that day, i realized how thankful i was to witness what happened during the yard sale. people who were not related to each other at all, helping each other out, in more ways that one. i just sat there thanking God that He has given us family and friends, who will be with us and help us, especially when we're in the season of pruning. friends who will cheer us on, who will pray for us, believe with us, cry with us, who will help us see the brighter side when all we see are tears welling up in our eyes. having friends in seasons of letting go makes the letting go a little bit easier than going at it alone.

although i missed church that sunday, i'm glad God was faithful enough to meet me where i was and teach me life lessons in the midst of common circumstances. my a-ha moment caused my heart to worship Him even more. i'm so thankful for the grace He has given me to let go of certain things in my life in order for me to be free to move forward. i pray that He will continue to give me the strength and willingness to place everything He has given me at the foot of His cross, to always keep an open hand and never feel entitled and proud. i am also grateful for all my family and friends that He has given me in different seasons of my life who have supported me along the way, never giving up on me and always believing with me and for me.

There are things that we never want to let go of, people we never want to leave behind. But keep in mind that letting go isn’t the end of the world, it’s the beginning of a new life.
-- Author Unknown

what things do you need to let go of at this season of your life? do you have friends who can help you along the way? i pray that you find the grace and strength to let go of things that weigh you down and that you find friends who can help you move forward in this journey we call life.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

the same mistake.

suffering for our faith is a reality. the bible clearly talks about suffering tied in with our faith. unlike westernized christianity (where if we don't get to buy starbucks or get to eat in cheesecake factory coz it's not in our budget,we think we're suffering for Christ already), there are people all over the world that are suffering for their faith. in fact being killed for it. yesterday, this news below was on cnn.com's front page. i was so overwhelmed with sadness to see how one person's faith can cause other people to hate so much that they kill a person for it.

"The Taliban claimed responsibility for the death, saying on its Web site it killed the "foreign woman" for preaching Christianity in the country, adding that it had been following the woman for some time." (read about the woman's story; read info reagarding raised security)

it's happening in india...it's happening in iraq. (watch video)

please don't get me wrong, this blog does not to promote hate to others who believe in other gods (or to those who have no gods at all). we are called to
love one another, no matter what each person believes. each individual is made in the image and likeness of God, so to see fellow human beings being killed because of their faith breaks my heart (whether christian, jews, muslim, buddhist, etc).

the reason why i write this blog today is for fellow christians to see the
importance of prayer...not just for their self and their needs, but to also pray for others especially for those that are serving as missionaries in countries hostile to the gospel and are facing suffering because of their faith. pray for protection, for comfort, pray for open doors for God's Word to be preached and that His Word would be heard even louder than the fear of facing suffering. it's time that the church of Christ rise up and take the position of victory as we pray...for our battle is not against flesh and blood.

the apostle paul, who knew ALL about suffering had a little something to say regarding this topic. here is what he and others have to say about the importance of prayer.

"A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil
...Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Pray...at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. And pray for me, too. Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the Good News is for Jews and Gentiles alike.I am in chains now, still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for him, as I should. "- Apostle Paul in Ephesians 6:10-20 (NLT paraphrased)

“The evangelization of the world depends first upon a revival of prayer. Deeper than the need for workers; deeper far than the need for money; deep down at the bottom of our spiritual lives, is the need for the forgotten secret of prevailing, worldwide prayer.” - Robert Speer

“In no other way can the believer become as fully involved with God’s work, especially the work of world evangelism, as in intercessory prayer." - Dick Eastman


“When we rely upon organization, we get what organization can do; when we rely upon education, we get what education can do; when we rely upon eloquence, we get what eloquence can do. And so on. But when we rely upon prayer, we get what God can do.” - Dr. A. C. Dixon

"Prayer does not fit us for the greater work, prayer is the greater work". --Oswald Chambers

"God’s children and his enemies both make the same mistake. They both underestimate the power of prevailing prayer" - quote from the movie The List

"Pray like your life depends on it...pray like others' lives depend on it...because in the end, it really does". - patricia :)


Sunday, October 19, 2008

be there.

Join us on October 31st for Blocktober 08...
an exciting, family friendly and free block party!




There is something for all ages!
Food, Games, Live Entertainment...
and did we mention it's FREE ?!

FREE! FREE! FREE!

and FAMILY FRIENDLY!

We have a great line up of performers ready to hit the stage...
acoustic sets, hip hop sets, dance crews, comedians.

There's even 2 local radio stations sending their street teams
to help us kick off the block party!

Tunes & Treats.

Check back regularly for details as the event nears.
(http://blocktober08.blogspot.com)

*PARKING will be available at no charge ---
across the street on the lower level of the Ralph's parking garage*

See you October 31st in Studio City!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

mushu.

i have one. i've had it for the past 14 and a half years. i've had this thing on me before the tattoo craze that's going on now, back when it was still considered a bit taboo for christians to have a tattoo. LOL. in fact, it was back when minors were NOT supposed to have a tattoo at all!

i must admit, i didn't know what i was doing back then and got the tattoo for a really stupid reason. i wanted to make my mom mad and had gotten a tribal dragon figuring it would be something that she'd hate. don't get me wrong though, i still like the way it looks and it's quite unique. its' name is "mushu" - just like the dragon in disney's mulan (a dragon that looks like a lizard). :)


i'm really glad that, although i got the tattoo for all the wrong reasons, i wasn't stupid enough to write a "name = i love you forever" or have hello kitty or tweety bird inked on me permanently (yikes). no offense to those of you that have an ex's name or a cartoon on your body.

anyway, right now, i am at a cross road. i don't know whether i should save my money to get it lasered off (which is super expensive) and i probably will not be able to afford it for years... or should i add another tattoo that could possibly "redeem" the meaning/symbol of my old tattoo.

if i do end up getting another tattoo, it would be on a "covered place", since i like it covered so no one can see it. i don't like flashing my tattoo. in fact, if i didn't write this, most people won't even know that i had one, since i don't wear low rider jeans and i cannot wear short shirts for the love of me since i have the trophy of motherhood all over my belly (aka stretchmarks).

here's a few ideas that i've been toying with in my head for the past 3 years regarding my tattoo. maybe you could help me out a bit or give me ideas as to what i should do:
  • my son was born on the year of the dragon (2000) - which could technically "redeem" the dragon symbol, so i was thinking of getting his name translated in chinese and get it tattooed on top of the dragon, but i just found out that i can't get a direct translation of his name (Christian) because his name's translation would read "disciple of Christ" and not christian because that word is not in the chinese vocabulary. i feel bad about this coz i've been thinking of doing this for about 3 years now and it sort of threw me off that i cant get his name translated...unless you know someone who can translate his name for me?!?! :) also, would that be ironic though to have a chinese astrology sign on my body, when technically as a christian, i don't believe in astrology?!?

  • i was also thinking of getting it covered up, but it would result in me getting a BIGGER tattoo and that would be EXPENSIVE and hard to hide. i dunno what to cover it up with yet, maybe you could throw out a few ideas if you have some.

  • i could just write the whole story of the revelation on my back and add a white horse with a man wearing a white robe riding over the dragon and add the lamp posts and the scrolls and those weird creatures that are part eagle/part lion/part something else and then tell people i am a prophet of old and the book of revelation is tattooed on my back. that would FOR SURE be an interesting conversation :)

  • do i just do something completely new and add have a whole collection of tattoos?!?! i could possibly regret having them when i'm 70 and my body is all wrinkly or it might be something that i looove having because it could be my secret life statement hidden from all the world, except for me and God and those closest to me.

  • or do i just leave it alone, let it be and stick with my original mushu?!?

i don't know. im still thinking about it. maybe you could help me sort through my thoughts regarding this issue. i am open to suggestions. feel free to leave comments, tattoo ideas, rebukes, remarks, bible scripture against tattoos, or what have you. maybe what you have to say can shine the light on this specific topic.


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

v.s.#4 - random pimples.

venting session #4

don't you just hate having pimples on random places....like near the hole in the base of your nose or in the middle of your eyes (where the pimple looks like a 3rd eye), or right on the tip of your nose? and most of the time, when you get pimples in those places, it HURTS 10x more than ordinary zits. and what makes it worst, is that when you talk to people, they either:

1. try and pretend that they don't "see" your pimple but you catch their eyes gazing right at the core of the zit, only to zoom their focus back on you when you call their attention.
2. they don't even pretend not to notice....they just STARE at it like the pimple is calling their name.
3. my sisters are the worst...coz they actually tap on the pimple and start laughing right after asking me if it hurts when they do that.

sheeeez. i write this because i have one of those random pimples right now and it's on the outer part of my ear. i feel like my right ear is swollen (but it really isn't) and every time i clean it with a q-tip in the morning, it HURTS like crazy.

uggghhh.

disappear stooooopid pimple...please disappear!


Saturday, October 4, 2008

better saturday.

i came from a rehearsal dinner for the wedding that i'm going to be a bridesmaid for. i decided to sleep over my brother in law & sister's house coz their house is closer to the venue and it will save me gas money.

my son ended up asking permission to sleep over his grandmothers house as well, so i let him. it's a saturday night, im alone with nothing to do (wooohooo)! i turn on the TV and lo behold, sleepless in seattle is on TNT (double woooohoooo). it's raining outside, a chilly night here in LA. im in my pajamas, i pulled out a blanket and i'm watching the movie on their nice tv. i'm going to make tea or coffee and just enjoy. perfect.

the first "down" time i've had in weeks (no joke). i couldn't have asked for a better saturday night.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

my story, my voice.

this is my story and my voice. today i will share my experience, hoping that you, will one day, share yours. whatever walk you may come from in life, i believe that we all have our own stories to share. some parts may be wonderful, others may not be. but each person's story unique, each is special in their own way.

this is not an easy thing for me to write. this requires utmost vulnerability. but i know that it must be done. because if this story can enlighten just one life to come to the saving and healing knowledge of Jesus, then i have done my part in knowing that my life and my experiences has served a part of its purpose.

i was a victim of abuse - physically, sexually, emotionally, verbally. it didn't happen just once either, it was repetitive and went on for years and years. you can just imagine the ways that i learned to numb myself from feelings, from guilt, from shame, from wanting to give and receive love. i taught myself that my emotions were not real and because of that, i lived a life with a heart so hardened, i didn't care about anything or anyone. i masked my pain with alcohol, with partying, with relationships, with drugs, with an "i dont care about anyone" attitude, with a hard heart. i struggled with my beauty, my identity, my sexuality.

the results of abuse in one person's life have a long time effect, especially if it's sexual abuse. we believe the lies that are told - that it was our fault, that we wanted it, that we deserved it. we embrace a poor image of ourselves and end up living out those lies as if it was our real identity. i grew up in complete mistrust, in deep pain, in darkness. thinking to myself, "there is no God, for how could He allow something like this to happen to me if He loved me".

i began a journey in my life to find answers for myself. but that led me no where. i grew up with so many set backs, so many fears to the point of paranoia. the repercussions of abuse go deeper than what most people can begin to imagine, because it scars their heart, their mind, their soul. i thought my life had no hope. i found myself on a path of self destruction as i tried to look for answers to heal my hurting yet hardened heart.

my Answer came when i met Him. and just like saul on the road to damascus as saul was on his way to do more destruction, He stopped me with His saving, Amazing Grace. in no other eyes did i find the answers but in His. no one but Him could get me out of that lifestyle of despair.

the One i was mad at for so long. the One i ran away from. the One i hated. He understood all along. people beat Him. people spit on His face. they hit Him. they mocked Him. they whipped Him, they kicked Him, they tortured Him, they abused Him. He did NOTHING to deserve it, but He took it in anyway.

He knew He needed to go through with it because 2,000 years later, a child would go through some form of pain and abuse. He knew that years later that same child would look upon His Word and see that He could relate to how she felt. He KNEW what was going on, He knows how it feels. His life was a life that is worthy to emulate, with His example of Love, of Forgiveness, of knowing His identity, of Redemption and Restoration, despite the pain that was caused by the abuse He faced.

and it's because of that, that i fell in Love. asked often by many, why i am such a Jesus freak... my answer is because i KNOW i have found Truth. He is Love. He saved me, He changed me. He is so undeniably real in my life that no philosopher or other belief can change how i feel, because i've felt His Love first hand. i've come to accept the fact that the pain that we face in this life won't go away, because we are alive. we would have to be dead to feel no pain. but in the midst of problems and trials, He is the One who is able to give a new beginning and a purpose, every day.

He taught me, that I could love myself, because He loved me first. (1John4:19)
He showed me that He is able to erase the sting of the past. (Isaiah 1:18)
He set my identity on Him and i am the apple of His eye. (Zechariah 2:8)
He reminds me that my past is not me and I am forgiven. (Psalm 103:12)
He tells me He makes me new. (Revelation 21:5)
He shows me that He wants me to be free. (Galatians 5:1)
He has redeemed me. (Job 33:28, Psalm 71:23, Isaiah 43:1, Isaiah 44:2)
He taught me that forgiveness is a must for me to move on. (Matthew 6:14, Collosians 3:13)
He showed me that restoration was possible. (Psalm 23:3, Psalm 71:20, Isaiah 57:18)
He tells me that i have a destiny, a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11, Provers 23:18, Jeremiah 31:17)


in fact, the miracle of His love was able to transcend beyond what i could imagine, because one of my abusers has asked for forgiveness from me and from God and changed his lifestyle and ways completely. there is now, restoration in the relationship, because instead of acting out of wounds, we see Jesus in each other. and the sting of the past is not there anymore. tell me, is that not a miracle working God?

this doesn't by any means, negate the importance of counseling, prayer, friendship, surrounding yourself with a healthy environment and again, prayer. these steps were necessary for me to walk in the path of healing. but it was by His mercy and grace that brought me through.

today, I live so whole, so free. free to hope, to live, to love, to forgive, free to laugh. free to be me - THE REAL ME. not masked by pain anymore. truth be told, there are still days when the fears that once gripped my heart comes back to haunt me. but even in the midst of that, i face the reflection of my heart, which is the Word of GOd and i see and choose to believe the Truth that is written about me.

i have come to terms with my past and that is why i can share it with you today. it is what it is, but i will not let it get the best of me. i ask that those that have similar pasts would see that it's possible to be free. there is no fear in love because Perfect Love casts out fear. (1John 4:18-19)

in the beginning, i said i was a victim. i said was, because i am not a victim anymore. i am victorious in every way. i walk in Love and i celebrate my life, knowing i have a story to share and a purpose for my life. i pray that you will find it in your heart do the same, because your story (whatever your story is) is important and needs to be heard and know that your life has a purpose as well.





dear reader, if you are a victim of abuse, please listen to my heart when i tell you that no other arms are safer than His. run to Him. He is waiting for you. if you need someone to talk to, i am here. call a hot line, tell a trusted friend, gets some counseling. if you are in any kind of abusive relationship, please get out NOW, please say something and get help. yes, change is possible, but he or she will not change with you there. YOU WILL NOT CHANGE THE PERSON. don't try to be the sacrificial lamb, coz there's only one person who can do that and Jesus took that place already. you need to get out. the first step to healing is to admit that it is actually happening to you. do not be afraid to tell someone. i write this to let you know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE and that there is no need to feel ashamed.

if you are the abuser, please please please STOP. the sooner you stop, the better. get some help. get some help. i cannot say it enough - GET SOME HELP! my abuser did and his life is now changed. i've forgiven him and there is no scarlet letter hanging around his head anymore. there's still hope for you, if you are willing to change. you need counseling, you need forgiveness, you need Him. like i said, the foot of the Cross accepts anyone who is willing to change, so there is hope for you but
i beg you, please stop and get some help.

THANKS.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

what you do in secret.

this link will lead you to someone elses' blog. it is not the easiest thing to read, but it is worth reading. it will talk about a boy who, at 13, discovered a dirty magazine lying in the dumpster and how the secret sin of pornography engulfed him and devastated his life and so many others.

Just like this sunday school song goes...the truth applies to kids and to us adults as well. be careful what you do "in secret", for one day all the "secret sin seeds" that is sown will bear fruit and will hurt not just us, but others as well..

Oh, be careful little eyes, what you see.
Oh, be careful little eyes, what you see.
There's a Father up above, looking down in tender love,
So be careful little eyes, what you see.
Be careful little ears what you hear
Be careful little mouth what you say...
Be careful little hands, what you touch...
Be careful little feet, where you go...

1Cor. 1:4 - He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men's hearts.



4 things.

I was tagged by Mary Anne (check my list - Mama Clark Speaks)

This one is called The Number Four.

4 things I did today:

1) read psalm 29 with my son.

2) cooked fried rice.

3) had a 2 hour talk with Victor about random things.

4) massaged jenamay and my son.


4 things on my to-do list:

1) start exercising more often.

2) finish packing.

3) find shoes for the wedding this weekend.

4) pick a book for my "read of the month".


4 of my guiltiest pleasures:

1) coffee. i can't stop it. it's an addiction that i've come to embrace.

2) surfing the net, blogging, chatting with friends. the internet just sucks me in.

3) locking myself in the bathroom so i can have some alone time without being bothered and asked to "do something".

4) walking by macy's home section and just drooling over china and lladro pieces.


4 random facts about me:

1) i love massages - getting it and giving it.

2) im probably the only asian that doesnt like sushi.

3) im only 5'1 and 3/4.

4) my favorite dog was tyson, my rottweiler.

4 bloggers i am tagging:

ROSIE

ANNA

TORI

EEHH UUHH... Those are the only people who i know read my blog. i cant tag mary anne back, can i?

ooh oohh IVY :)

or JENAMAY.

yep. there's 5 for ya. i know i was just supposed to do 4 but who cares?! :)