T.R.U.S.T.

trusttrust (noun \ˈtrəst\) by Merriam-Webster

: belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective, etc.

: an arrangement in which someone’s property or money is legally held or managed by someone else or by an organization for a set period of time

: an organization that results from the creation of a trust

 

“I think it’s hard to trust because we have experienced so many let downs in our lifetime… independence and self-reliance are often our self-defense mechanisms” these words came out of my mouth in my conversation with a friend this past weekend.  My friend confessed to me that for the first time in her life, she was relying on people to help her out.  She had experienced many difficulties in her life, and it was hard for her to ask people for help or rely on them.  It was hard to let herself trust people, even people in her church community.  As we prayed together, she thanked me for helping “trust” become part of her life again.  It was an amazing feeling to know that I could be trusted.

That evening, I was faced with having to trust someone else… but my heart was riddled with doubt.  To be fair, it’s not because this person couldn’t be trusted… but it was because I had experienced so many let downs in my lifetime.  See, I grew up with the mantra, “if you want something done right, you must do it yourself!”  And that mantra carried over to every aspect of my life… I’ve always hated group projects because I didn’t trust others to pull their weight.  I was okay with failing if I didn’t do the work… but I wasn’t okay failing if it’s because others didn’t do the shared work.

Unfortunately in this thing called life, we often have to journey with other people… and it requires trust.  Honestly, I don’t know how I made it this far with very little trust that I have.  Finally this person said “trust God.”  Ugh… the God-card!  Man, I hate the God-card.  I searched my heart…. and I uttered the words “I’m scared to trust God.”  I actually couldn’t believe I said that out loud!  It’s like this… it’s not that I don’t trust God… I do believe that God ultimately has the best plans… and that He indeed is trustworthy… But the reason why I was scared to trust God is because sometimes God allows us to go through painful valleys before we experience the ultimate joy.  I have experienced my share of painful valleys… and I definitely don’t feel like going through more of them.  Thus, I was reluctant to trust God nor anyone else… I wanted to take control of my own life thinking I could save myself the trouble!  Even as I see these words on my computer screen, I cringe!!!  What am I thinking??? That I have fail-proof plans up my sleeve?  Oh.. please…

Well, the words that came out of my mouth in my conversation with my friend earlier that day pierced my heart like a knife!  I often have the wisdom for someone else… but it’s so difficult to apply that wisdom in my own life… and it occurred to me that when I don’t trust others, I rob the joy of being trusted… and ultimately, I rob myself the joy of experiencing God’s plan of redemption through restored relationships.  Man, what a rebuke…

Every time I close my eyes, I see the word “TRUST.”  I think I’m slowly learning to TRUST…

and yes… I’ve been MIA for a while… I’m slowly getting my life together again… and gather my thoughts together again… hope to jot them down more often from now on…

I Want a Do-Over!

go back 3 spacesLately, I keep wishing someone would hand me a chance card that read “go back 3 spaces.”  Gosh, if I could go back 7 spaces, it would be even better!

I wish I could to go back to my last interaction with my mom before her aneurysm.  I wish I could go back 15 years right before I probably said very hurtful words to someone I shouldn’t have.  I want a do-over.  I wish I could go back to 2011 when I took some time off from full-time ministry and took time to travel and play.  I wish I could do-over the past 10 months. I wish I could do-over the past 2 months.  I wish I could go back to this morning for a do-over and take back stupid and lame things that came out of my mouth.  I want a do-over.

The problem is… not only can I not get a do-over… but even if I were to go back, I only wish to go back with the knowledge and experiences I have now… which is just not possible. It’s impossible to live without any regrets in life… I sure try my best though.  Life is full of mistakes…  regrets… and pain.  There are things I wish I could do-over just about every day.  I ask myself “did I represent Jesus well today?”  and unfortunately, I can always think of a way I didn’t.  Trust me, I’m not the type of person who beats myself over my shortcomings every day… but everyday, I’m reminded how far from perfect and good I am.  I’m also reminded how far from perfect this life is… it’s full of frustrations, pain and tears.

Thankfully, God doesn’t hold my imperfection against me.  Although I keep making mistakes, He’s already forgiven me of stupid things I’ll do in the days, weeks, months, and years to come… and He calls me His.  And while I can’t go back to yesterdays for a do-over, He gives me a do-over every new day.  I have the opportunity to make wrongs right.  I have the opportunity to make wiser decisions, having learned from past mistakes.  I have the opportunity to represent Jesus better tomorrow than I did today.  It doesn’t mean I’ll get it perfect one day… not as long as I live on earth.  But I get a do-over every day when I open my eyes.

Life is still full of frustrations, pain, and tears… thankfully, God knows them all… He knows my frustrations.  He knows my pain.  He knows my tears.  And while not everything is under my control, I get a do-over each day to change my attitude, perspective, and response.  I already have a do-over!

Let.It.Go.

Honestly, it’s getting old.  I’ve been through this before… many times.  I must be stubborn… or dense… or just dumb… I keep making the same mistake over and over… and every time, it feels new.

let it go

I keep thinking that I’m in control of my own life.  I keep thinking I know what’s best for me.  And when things don’t go my way, I get disappointed, hurt, and sad.  And I ask God “why God?”  I ask God “what is your purpose in this?”  I ask God “what is your plan exactly?”  I need to Let.It.Go.  I need to trust that God indeed knows what’s best for my life… and that He’s in control.  I need to Let.It.Go.

I have the need to correct everyone’s misunderstandings, misinformation, or misjudgment.  At least, that’s what I think they are.  I’d like to think it’s because I want people to be well-informed and be fair.  But in actuality, I just feel the need to make them understand things from my point of view.  I need to Let.It.Go.  I need to accept the fact that I can’t change people.  I’m not responsible for people’s decisions and opinions.  I need to Let.It.Go.

I have the tendency to want to fix everything.  I’m a problem-solver by nature… and I get frustrated when I see people spinning the same web over and over again.  I get frustrated when I feel like I have the answer, and yet they don’t seem to get it.  I need to Let.It.Go.  I can’t fix everything for everyone.  I can’t fix people’s attitudes.  I can’t fix their opinions.  I really don’t have all the right answers.  I need to Let.It.Go.

I believe life has many ups and downs.  I believe how you feel about life is dependent on your attitude. I believe every stage of life feels difficult when you’re in it.  I believe it’s necessary to have a good sense of humor about life because otherwise, you’ll want to cry all day.  I believe God doesn’t give us beyond what we can handle.  I probably won’t last a day in your shoes just as you may not last a day in mine.  Trust me, my life is no picnic either.  I believe every tough life stages will eventually pass, and we can overcome.  Lately, I’ve heard so many “woe is me” stories and attitudes.  I just want to shake them and tell them to put life into perspective.  If you have a place to lay your head at night and food to eat, you’re blessed. I want to tell them to just get over it, own your own life, and live it!  But I need to Let.It.Go.  I can encourage people, but I can’t change people–only God can do that.  I can listen to people, but I can’t shake them out of their self-misery forcefully.  I am responsible to people, but I can’t be responsible for people.  I need to Let.It.Go.  By the way, there’s a reason why I didn’t go into counseling (when many people said I should)… I would have been a horrible counselor–God wired me for something else and thankfully the Holy Spirit guided me to listen to Him rather than people.

I keep holding onto emotions that aren’t healthy for me.  I need to surrender every aspect of my life to God.

and Let.It.Go.

Crazy Pills…

It’s been awhile since I’ve blogged… Life has been pretty busy, to say the least… I feel like I’ve been on a roller coaster ride for the past several months!  And yes, I’ve been feeling like I’m taking crazy pills (remember this from Zoolander?)

If you’ve been around me lately, you have probably heard me say this a lot!  I have always struggled with my identity growing up.  Trying to fit in when you’re not part of the majority has not been easy.  When I was the only asian girl in my elementary school in Kansas, I desperately wanted to wake up one morning with blonde hair and blue eyes.  When I moved to Los Angeles and found myself among other Korean-Americans that looked like me, I realized I was very different from them but desperately tried to fit in by acting like them.  When I found myself in the midst of Korean-American Christian community in college, I struggled to fit the cookie cutter mold of what I perceived to be the perfect Korean-American Christian girl.  I was pretty lousy fitting into that mold, although I’ve always been really good at faking it!

In my late 30s, I no longer care about fitting into a mold.  I just want to be the best ME that God made me… I thought that would be easy, but I’m learning that it’s not easy being me (I’m sure Kermit the Frog can relate).  It’s not easy being me because I don’t fit in any mold that has been expected of me (for the most part).  I’m coming to terms with the fact that I don’t think like a typical Korean-American, a typical Christian, nor even a typical girl (I guess that’s why I’ve been considered one of the guys most of my life–which is NOT a compliment to a girl nevertheless)!  People tell me that’s what makes me unique and that’s what makes me ME… but when I see people giving me crazy looks after I open my mouth, all I’m thinking is “I feel like I’m taking crazy pills.”  Thankfully, I have met some kindred spirits along the way… but for some reason, God has not placed me with my kindred spirits currently…  so right now, I’m learning.  I’m learning to be patient.  I’m learning to communicate in ways that people understand.  I’m learning to hold my tongue.  I’m learning to show mercy.  I’m learning to be kind.  I’m learning to forgive.  I’m learning to love.   I’m learning to trust in God’s leading.  I’m learning to feel normal even when I feel like I’m on crazy pills.

CRAZY-PILLS

What a Good God

On this Thanksgiving Day, I’m reminded how awesome God has been to me…

What a good God You’ve been to me
Your goodness and Your grace everyday I’ve seen
And what else can I do
But give my deepest thanks to You
What a good God You’ve been to me

What a faithful God
You’ve been to me
You’ve provided far beyond
Everything I need
So what else can I do
But give my deepest thanks to You
What a faithful God You’ve been to me

What a loving God You’ve been Lord to me
You shed Your blood upon the cross
So I can stand here free
So what else can I do
But give my deepest heartfelt thanks to You

What a faithful God You’ve been
What a loving God You’ve been
What a good God You’ve been to me

Lover of My Soul…

Today was a very looooooong day (I feel like I’ve been saying that a lot lately…).

It doesn’t help that I haven’t been sleeping well for the past few weeks… and I also just feel like I fully haven’t been myself physically, mentally, and emotionally… Perhaps I am stressed…  Well, anyhow, I was so tired today that I got lost driving from our main church campus to the new campus… And then I missed the freeway to get home TWICE after my 12-hour day.  Oh man… Yeah, I’m kind of a mess… geeeeesh…

As I was sitting half-brain dead during my last meeting tonight, we had a time of worship.  Usually, I can pretty much sing most of the songs on pilot-mode.  Our worship pastor decided to end the evening with “Jesus, Lover of my soul…” Initially, the words would just flow right out of my mouth without much thought… but the third time we repeated the song, the words all of a sudden registered in my half-dead brain… and I found myself smiling through these words: “Though my world may fall, I’ll never let you go. My Saviour, my closest friend, I will worship you until the very end.”  And as we repeated the words over and over again, I found myself smiling bigger and bigger (I probably looked pretty dorky at this point).

I was reminded that Jesus is indeed the lover of my soul…  He is the One that I need…  He is the One who made me and formed me… He is the One who knows me inside and out…  He is the One that I love and worship…  and those thoughts brought much needed smile to my face tonight… (on a side note, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that so many of my blogs this month has been about music and lyrics–since I’ve been on media-fast, lyrics have made a bigger impact… God is so cool that way!)

Jesus, Lover of my soul,
Jesus, I will never let you go
You’ve taken me from the miry clay
You’ve set my feet upon the Rock, and now i know

I love you, I need you,
Though my world may fall, I’ll never let you go
My Saviour, my closest friend,
I will worship you until the very end

God knows your need…

This day started out with some big decisions I had to make…  ugh, i hate those moments… and the rest of the day was followed by many other decisions I need to make in the upcoming weeks and months that will have some big implications in terms of ministry, finances, health, life, etc… ugh, i want to crawl into a hole…  all these upcoming decisions is making my heart feel very uncomfortable, unsettled, confused, conflicted, etc…

Strangely enough as I was trying to settle my heart (even in the midst of our 6 hour long staff meeting), God put Isaiah 61:3 on my heart:

To all who mourn in Israel,
    he will give a crown of beauty for ashes,
a joyous blessing instead of mourning,
    festive praise instead of despair.
In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks
    that the Lord has planted for his own glory.

Of course, this thought was followed by a song in my head:

He gives beauty for ashes
Strength for fear
Gladness for mourning
Peace for despair

When sorrow seems to surround you
When suffering hangs heavy o’er your head
Know that tomorrow brings
Wholeness and healing
God knows your need
Just believe what He said

He gives beauty for ashes
Strength for fear
Gladness for mourning
Peace for despair

When what you’ve done keeps you from moving on
When fear wants to make itself at home in your heart
Know that forgiveness brings
Wholeness and healing
God knows your need
Just believe what He said

He gives beauty for ashes
Strength for fear
Gladness for mourning
Peace for despair

I once was lost but God has found me
Though I was bound I’ve been set free
I’ve been made righteous in His sight
A display of His splendor all can see

He gives beauty for ashes
Strength for fear
Gladness for mourning
Peace for despair

On an exciting note, I received a message that the Sports Ministry in South Africa is currently testing “Coaching for Life” curriculum that my friend and I wrote earlier this year… and so far, so good… Thank you God!!!