Praise God in the Waiting

I have not written on this blog in years. In fact, it’s been a long time since I have even been on this blogging platform. Interestingly enough, I have spent the last several days re-reading and pondering my old posts because the truths that I wrote about four to five years ago still apply. It is amazing that God is still teaching me the same lessons over and over again, and reading my words from the old me was somehow such an encouragement to my present self.

Well, where do I even begin?

The past year has been difficult, to say the least. A tragic, abrupt death of a close friend. My family split into two time zones. A loved one being diagnosed with cancer. An unexpected global pandemic. Shattered dreams of a future that I thought was so secure.

There have been plenty of sleepless nights for me lately (and as I’m typing this, tonight is one of them). Yet despite the waves of my emotions of grief, anxiety, and helplessness, I cannot help but be in awe of God. He is clearly at work in my life. He is calling me to surrender and relinquish control. This sorrow is not wasted; this pain is clearly for a purpose. These trials are for my good and somehow God is redeeming all of my suffering for His glory.

My friend, musicgoon, recently gifted me a book titled “Mercy For Today: A Daily Prayer from Psalm 51” by Jonathan Parnell, which may be very well be on its way to becoming one of my favorite new books for the year. In one of the chapters, Parnell says,

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Oceanside Pier, San Diego Photoshoot

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My dear friends and the couple behind Chus’ Life will soon be celebrating their wedding anniversary. It seems not long ago when Tiffany called me up to tell me she just started dating and in excitement, we planned for a date so that I could meet Michael in person. I was in my senior year of college and I remember being pretty gung-ho about grilling this guy and determining whether or not he’d be a good fit for my best friend. I was ready to grill him and to nitpick at his answers because I couldn’t have just anyone date my best friend.

I think what surprised me most was that Michael wasn’t the kind of guy I was expecting him to be when he showed up. He was rather quiet and reserved in demeanor; the questions that I had prepared to ask him resulted with simple answers and to be frank, I found his answers to be a bit disappointing due to the lack of detail (or what I judged to be rather general and unspecific).

All I really remember about that night was that I ended up doing most of the talking and while I couldn’t really find anything wrong about Michael by the time it was over, in the back of my mind, I questioned whether he would be able to lead Tiffany spiritually and to take care of her. He didn’t seem to be the “leader type” in my opinion. (Random side note: Ironically, years later, Michael blogged about this topic here.)

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My Soul Be Still

I’ve been quite distracted lately, with my thoughts scrambling all over the place and my feelings going from very high high’s to low low’s. I ponder and mull over my life until my head hurts and the ending result is still unknown. I hate to admit that my heart has been battling much discontentment, fear, and anxiety.

Yet the more that I try to think about possible scenarios of how the future will play out, the more restless I become. When I shared all my struggles with my discipler, she gently reminded me that I really needed to surrender my future to God. Instead of thinking in circles and freaking out about the unknown, I should be praying and praying some more. Continue reading

A Foreigner

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(Photo Credit: Chus’ Life)

In a few hours, I will be flying across the Pacific Ocean to another land, to a completely different culture than what I step out into every morning here in the States. In a way, I will be going home, since I will be reunited with family members that I have missed. It’s odd that while I have spent the majority of my short life so far in California, there is still a part of me that is deeply and strongly attached to my roots in Taiwan. I seriously love that land and its people.

This will probably be my shortest trip ever at just a two-week-long stay, but in that time, I am excited to see family and friends that I have not seen in years, and to eat foods that make Taiwan famous. My schedule will be pretty packed because every moment is precious. After all, I have no idea when I plan to return again. It could be in a year, or another three to five. Every minute does count. Every conversation is important. Continue reading

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