The Distance Between the Mind & the Heart

We should handle it the best way we know how and get on with it. That’s what my mind says, I just wish somebody would explain it to my heart.
~M’Lynn, Steel Magnolias
 

This is one of my all time favorite quotes from the girliest movie that I actually love… Steel Magnolias!  The reason why I love this movie so much is because it has so many awesome quotes, tearful moments followed by laughter…. and besides how could you not love anything with Sally Fields?

4play-Heart-vs-Mind2The first time I heard this line by Sally Field’s character after her daughter’s funeral, my heart just sank because it resonates with me so much! I always feels like there’s a long distance between my mind and my heart… Over time, I’ve learned to build my mind to be strong and focused (probably as self-defense mechanism) but I haven’t honed in on building my heart as much. My mind often feels strong but my heart often feels weak. I get hurt easily. I get disappointed easily. My mind says not to mind what other people say or do… but my heart can’t help but to feel sad, angry, frustrated, disappointed, hurt, and unsettled.  I know in my mind what I should do… but I wish somebody would explain it to my heart because it often doesn’t accompany my mind. I often wonder why God made the mind to think differently from the way the heart feels. It would be so much easier if they just cooperated and worked together.

This morning as I was thinking about this quote, I was reminded that my only source of direction and answer is talking to God and turning to the Scripture. I always wish it was “yes” or “no”… but I often don’t get those direct answers from God, but I know that He has given enough truths for me to follow. Besides, I was reminded that “yes” or “no” isn’t what God wants us to have, but  He wants ME to seek Him… and that’s when He grants us clarity! Now, let’s go tell my heart that!

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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.

I’m human afterall…

J:  oh glo, you’re a mess!

me:  i know!

J:  it only shows that you are human … grin

me: hahahaha… darn, thanks?

J:  hahaha… what, you’ve always be all together most of the time.  almost like my wonder woman.

me: and i kinda like it that way!!! or at least i like to give that illusion.  LOL!!! i wanna be WW!

J:  but it’s all good … you’ll bounce back and maybe this is God’s way to telling ya to slow DOWN!

 

So it’s no big surprise that I’m obsessed with Wonder Woman… I think I’ve always liked her because she’s always been so super strong–physically, emotionally, mentally (yes, I know she’s not real… just let me have my moment!)  I’ve been a fan of Wonder Woman since I first saw Lynda Carter rope in all the bad guys with her lasso as a 4 or 5 year old.  As I got older and probably due to circumstances, I felt the need to take care of myself and be strong.  I felt the need to always be in control of my own life–or as much as I can.  So I became this “I got everything under control” person… and I played the part super well–with my whole extended family, in my ministry, and everywhere else…

So when I came unglued this week, I seriously felt like I was having an out-of-body experience.  And for those who had to work with me this week probably never saw me coming apart… but I was a total mess.  Thankfully, I have some of the most amazing friends that came to my rescue… and helped me laugh–literally LOL!!!  And just as my blunt yet loving friend reminded me, I’m human afterall… and it’s okay to be vulnerable!  In fact, I’m so blessed to have girlfriends that allow me to be human in front of them (or over the phone or text) and be glued back together with gentle reminder that God is in control even if I’m not!  Thank you God!

One of my favorite lines from my friend over our phone convo:  “At least we’re still not in our 20’s–naive and dumb.”  haha… if you’re still in your 20’s and think that was insensitive, just wait ’til you hit near 40’s/40’s, and you’ll see what we meant by that!

Lessons Learned from 7 Food Challenge… (it’s only day 5)

Today is Day 5… and more and more of my friends think I’m crazy (but that’s nothing new)…

I’ve been eating well… but I’ve already learned quite a bit just from first five day:

  • I’m addicted to coffee.  I had the worst caffeine withdrawal headache on day 2… I was out of commission for 2 hours because my headache was so bad.  I still really love the taste of coffee, but I will work on cutting down when I go back to drinking coffee in July.
  • I went to the market on Day 1 so I would have enough of my 7 foods for the first week.  This might be a record, but I was in and out of the market in 10 minutes.  I usually take close to an hour shopping for food for the week… but given that I knew exactly what I could buy, I didn’t waste time looking around at new items, comparing brands and prices, etc… Wow, I just saved myself a lot of time!
  • My week’s grocery bill was $35!!!!  Every time I go, I spend about $100 on average… I just saved a lot of money!!!
  • I can get very creative about making food just with my 7 items.  I do not feel deprived in any way… I’ve been eating well… and I’m thankful.
  • I’ve eaten out with people twice, and now that I’m very aware of what I’m eating, I’m amazed by how many ingredients go into everything you order in a restaurant!  I seriously live such comfortable life… and I think I easily eat 7 items per meal.  I have a new perspective on what I’m privileged and blessed to eat.
  • When I started, I said this wasn’t about being legalistic… so when I went over to my cousins’ house, they had my favorite food waiting for me–sushi and crab!  I couldn’t say no especially knowing that they went out of their way to feed me my favorites!  I was able to cheat one day, and I see it as a blessing from God… God continues to bless me abundantly even in the midst of my challenges!
  • I’m more challenged to simplify my life!!!!  And excited to see what lessons and experiences the next 25 days will bring!

what i learned from Soul Surfer

It seems like everyone on twitter and fb were commenting on how much they loved the movie Soul Surfer, a story of Bethany Hamilton, a teen surfer, who lost an arm to a shark.  I vaguely remember hearing and seeing this story in the media.  So when I got a free Redbox coupon code, I decided to watch the movie and be the judge for myself.  The movie was definitely an inspiring, amazing story of a courageous teenager who overcame many odds to become a pro surfer.  As usual, after the movie, I went to “special features” to see what other things I could watch.  I’m a documentary junkie, so “Heart of a Soul Surfer Documentary” caught my eyes, and I started watching it.  For me, this was the real story, a lot more inspiring and amazing than the hollywood movie.  These 30 minutes was more impressive than the 2 hour movie!

I had heard that she was a Christian, but the documentary tells of her testimony and how she experienced God in her life.  Bethany had given her life to Jesus at the tender age of five, and she always believed that God had a special plan for her life.  Bethany sounds like an amazing, kind-hearted kid… your basic good person… and I’m sure part of that is just her innate nature.  However, her faith in God definitely has played a big part in who she is.  In the documentary, she talks about how she really wanted to be used by God in her life at the age of 13!!!!  THIRTEEN!!!  Along with her parents, she was praying for God’s will in her life at the age of THIRTEEN!!!  That’s only a year or two out of elementary school!!!  What everyone would consider to be the biggest tragedy to her became her biggest blessing.  Of course, I don’t have to tell the story… but what I’m left with is her firm foundation and trust in the Lord at such young age.  The perspective she had as a thirteen year old is staggering to me!!!  And despite all of her difficulties, she decided to rise above and use it to bring God glory and share her faith with others. Man, I’m almost twice her age, and I have hard time with this!

So what’s my BIG LESSON from this girl???  Just how important it is to instill the love of Christ from very young age… and to teach kids that God never leaves them, but that He cares for them, and has a beautiful plan for each one of them regardless of adversities in life!  Bethany really believed in this truth, and clung to Jesus who loves her no matter what.  Her courage and hope came from being a precious child of God.  Imagine how her life had been different if she didn’t know Jesus.  She may still have been a successful pro-surfer because she has an amazing will, but she would not have used her situation to share her faith and Jesus with many that she has touched and come in contact with.

The documentary repeatedly speaks of God’s purpose and plan for her life (Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28, btw, my 2 favorite verses in the Bible)… and my favorite quote by Bethany is: “I know that if I didn’t have one arm, I wouldn’t be sharing God’s word with everyone, and God put me on this earth to serve Him… and having one arm is how He uses me.”  Seriously, this is what we need to be teaching kids and youth in the church and in our homes.  Not just Bible stories and memory verses (yes, they are important)… but we need to make God REAL and PERSONAL in the lives of kids!!!

Perspective…

Ever have those days when you’re just wishing for the day to come to an end… and your thought is “I never wish to repeat today as long as I live…”?  Well, today was one of those days for me… I hate having this yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach.

Today started out with lots of excitement, everything was perfectly planned and on schedule… until one thing that didn’t go according to the plan, and then… domino effect… uuuggghhh… We had a 5 pm deadline, and it quickly became 4 pm.  My business partner, Jackie, and I had driven all over town, trying to find the exact items that we needed because our supplier had changed his inventory, and he no longer carried the exact items we needed… We called the distribution center in a panic… and given the short notice, there was absolutely NO WAY that we were going to deliver what we had planned by 5 pm… It was time to get creative.  In movies, this works out perfectly despite everything that goes wrong… and the fantasy in me is thinking that everything will come together.  4:15 pm, and the reality started to set in… I felt panic and sweat running all throughout my body.  Out of pure desperation, we made our final stop at a craft store, and we bought ribbons, scissors, and few other things to make it work somehow (I’m sure if McGyver was here, he’d come up with something better).  We finally made it to our destination, and it was far from perfection, but somehow we were able to pull it off (although I don’t know how happy our clients were).   Although things kinda worked out, I really hate not being able to deliver what we had originally promised… and I still can’t get rid of that yucky feeling in my stomach… I HATE that feeling!!!  I HATE feeling deflated!!!

Jackie and I just needed to sit, get a cold drink, eat, and wallow in our sorrow… and eventually laugh as we realize that this is just another learning experience… until the phone rang.  Her ailing mother had just fallen and was being taken to the emergency room.  Once again, in panic, we quickly paid our bill, and head back to pick up her car.  In a hurry, she apparently opened my car door so fast that it made contact with the car next to mine… The owner of the car came out, and she was not happy… At that point, Jackie explained that we had to go to the ER to see her mom… and the owner of the car just said “be careful next time.”  We drove back as fast as we could… and during that time, we heard back that her mom was okay and will be treated for her open wound.  There was just silence in the car… and then we both broke out into laughter!

Today was such a dramatic, emotional day… and the phone call about Jackie’s mom immediately made us forget everything else… all other things felt so petty.  When I got home, I started thinking about how I let little things get to me all the time… I’m learning to laugh things off in life.  But sometimes when I’m in a state of panic, I let it get the worst of me.  Everyday, I’m learning to put my life into perspective… and to see the bigger picture… It’s a challenge.  I still have that yucky feeling in my stomach although today is almost over.  But it’s a lesson that never gets old…