My Light, My Joy

 

Today, I am grateful for the abundance of love that God has showered onto my life through the people he brought into it.

I know I am loved by God and that is enough, but as a young, and often childlike woman, being blessed with such beautiful humans to walk with me in life during the good and the bad days is something I wake up grateful for every day.

I am grateful for how strong of a bond my sisters and I have cultivated, through effort, through grace, and through compassion.

I am grateful for the times they bring wide grins to my face and make me temporarily forget whatever stress or illness I might feel consumed by.

I am grateful for Victoria who inspires me with her passion for fashion and aesthetics, and for her devotion and generous love and support to me, her friend.

I am grateful for my mother who’s sacrificed much in her love for us, and in her obedience to the God she believes in with her whole heart and soul.

I am grateful for being 6 months seizure free! I am grateful for being healthier than I’ve ever been in my entire life.

I am grateful for the chance and the spirit to try again with new mornings, new days, when fear or anxiety takes hold of me because of the uncertainty of the future or because of circumstance.

I am grateful to be refined day by day in my twenties, whether it be through fire or gentle breeze.

I am grateful to know that the God who has me and my life in the palm of his hands loves me so much. I am grateful to be walking in his love. And that because of this, my path is sure. Regardless of whatever life throws my way.

I am grateful for these people in these photos. They bring me such deep, deep joy. I can not begin to explain in any accurate manner just how grateful I am to have them in my life.

A Bit of Morning Meditations, February 18, 2020

If you cannot please everyone with your actions and your art, you should satisfy a few. To please many is dangerous.
– Gustav Klimt

While I agree with and am inspired by the truth in this, I also feel one can fall into the falsity of the opposite: “Because you can’t please or exist in harmony with everyone, be YOU! That is where true happiness and fulfillment lies!” In this opposite, there lies too an extreme version of self-centeredness, and I can see the ramifications of this in people’s mentalities, especially of those of my generation, when we just *swing* and embrace such a narrative without sufficient personal reflection.

“Be Me,” but at the cost of whom?

February 2020

 

“I feel your eyes in the morning sun, I feel you touch me in the pouring rain” – PJ Morton

Morning Meditation: Run

Don’t seek out recognition unless that in itself is a Good and intentional means, and for a better and Good end.

Be humble and lead with your head down and keep running. Keep doing the good things.

Keep striking out the bad things. The bad things will keep coming and entering your life, but you are resilient, you are strong, and you are clear-eyed.

Did I tell you you are resilient, you are strong, and you are clear-eyed?

You got this.


A borrowed prayer:

“May our souls have never ending peace that passes all understanding may our hearts long for your will, God. May our minds crave your wisdom. May our bodies align with all you have sacrificed to make us whole. May we know you Jesus.”

On Presence_February 4, 2020

I was doing my daily morning devotionals today,

listing what I’m grateful for,

praising God with a worship song,

lifting up the prayers of my own and of my dear friends and community, and for those in need of prayer for healing: from the flu, the Corona virus, from anxiety, from stress, from anxiety driven by a constant need for control, but never being able to get it, by identity formed from performance, and more,

reading the word (the Bible)

and hoping to get even more closer to God and more aligned, or sometimes just even getting aligned) to God’s will.

Today’s devotionals was one of those days when I started out with a cloudy mind. Luckily, not cloudy from an unsettling negative mood, but cloudy from the bustle of thoughts coming in and out of my mind.

So midway I stopped. Because this is not the way it should be. And I wrote a prayer:

“God, I confess my mind is abuzz with so many distractions [this work day]. So many thoughts of the to dos, opportunities, and ideas. Help me see and believe and think and act in a way that reflects that you are my greatest to do, my greatest opportunity, and my greatest thought.”

And then I resumed. And it was great 🙂 A marked peace entered by mind, and I am glad I was able to lift up my lack of focus to God this morning and just say, “here I am. I’m totally unfocused right now and thinking of 6 million things, and all of them have nothing to do with you and I’m sorry. I don’t want to color this time with my agenda, worldly thoughts, and not be present for you.”.

I am grateful for another day to live.

Trinity Grace Church Worship Team Meeting_January 28, 2020

Last evening’s Worship Team meet.

I was late coming as the workday ended up being intense with more left to be finished into the late night, per usual and as of late ever since I’ve chosen the path of being an entrepreneur.

We worshipped God so freely, so purely… so in love, with impromptu harmonies and melodies and whispers and contemplative silence..

Our new worship director who recently moved here from London led us in setting our intentions on being the following (in order of importance), as we set out to sing, create, produce, and write:

“A people of presence

A people of praise

A people of creativity”

…Grounds for re-making a culture of pure hope, love, and life.

I am so blessed to be on this journey with this passionate team and with this family. One dream.

In the end of the day, this is what matters most to me.

Recalling this: “Don’t miss the moment”.

I don’t want to miss mine, I wish that for everyone else as well.

 

Written on the morning of January 29, 2020

5 Habits I Picked Up in 2019

2019 has been a year: My first brand, ATEM, turned 1 year old, our cosmetics R&D startup is going into our 3rd year, and I turned 27.

In this time and despite my work taking most of my attention on my days (excluding Sabbath, Sundays!), I developed some new habits that have supported my betterment.

1. I started exercising regularly: 3 to 5 times a week!

Result: Exponentially increased physical health, increased mental fortitude (ie. focus), and emotional wellbeing

2. I started flossing daily, after setting up my daily habit tracker in July, 2019: I now floss every day without needing a reminder or a checklist to tell me I have to!

Result: Increased self-control: A developed appreciation for discipline and keeping to some “orders” of the day

3. I started regularly writing down things I am grateful for, or allocating a protected time to visually go down the the things I am grateful for.

Result: Increased mental and emotional wellbeing – rewiring the “space” for automatic negative thoughts to come in to a space for positive, gratitude filled thoughts.

4. I started making my bed more regularly: This is a habit to solidify in 2020 as I still do not keep to the habit.

Result: Increased self-control: A developed appreciation for discipline and keeping to some “orders” of the day

5. I started being more careful and controlled about the things I utter about myself or my life: Saying less “I can’t,” or “I’m not,” and more “I hope,” “I can,” and “I believe.” I hope to continue this habit into this year, and applying this principle as I speak of and to others as well.

Result: Increased mental and emotional wellbeing – rewiring the “space” for automatic negative thoughts to come in to a space for positive, gratitude filled thoughts. As Carl Lentz one said, “change your mind, change your life.”

A habit I would like to change completely in 2020 is not letting my moods dictate my actions as much, particularly in the physical with my waking and sleeping times. I had experienced a season of mild depression, and because of this, it was difficult to get out of bed at times I wanted to on a daily basis over a span of 2 some months. I felt like I was chained to my bed, and sometime woke up feeling like 2 tons of cement were lying atop me and I’d go to sleep again because it felt like too much of a struggle to try to fight it.  During this time, what I lost in time/productivity, I made up for, but this was not great for my overall health. This year, for my wellbeing, I would like to commit to regularly sleeping a number of hours per day, and waking up consistently at an earlier hour of the day. I write these down, as writing my intentions down will incentivize me to action.