As the saying goes… the grass is always greener on the other side. I used to like to compare to other people. Be it compare myself with their intelligence, material wealth, physical beauty. Those action of comparison may lead to jealousy and envy. What I learned is that comparison does not make you any happier… it just makes you more bitter. It may push you to achieve things but what is the pursue of all things with no end? I am still learning not to compare… what I did was realise how blessed I am and start being grateful for what I have. It is hard to be grateful when you have been through something difficult…but each breath counts. Each individual has unique talents and portions. If these individuals focus on their wellbeing, they can achieve things; whilst if you keep comparing with other people, how are you going to focus on your path and achieve what you were planned to do? Comparison is the thief of joy. Joy can come in being satisfied in your current situation, be it in hard circumstances or easy circumstances, knowing that God has everything planned for good for those He loves and that He will finish the good work in us.
Amidst all the pain and suffering, this verse reminds me to focus on God’s love. What He did for me at the cross. All my guilt and shame, sins, He took it upon Himself, that I may be clothed in Christ. It was not easy to accept God loving me a first because I asked myself, ‘How could God love a broken person such as myself?’ But I have no right to question that and in His mercy and grace, He showed me He truly loved me and accept me as I am. As God regards me as an apple of His eyes, He leads me beside quite waters. I used to question God’s love because He did not give me what I want but as the Bible says His ways are higher than ours and God knows best what is good for me. To focus on God’s love is to give thanks to Him and to trust Him that He who started the good work on us will finish it until completion.
In regards to endurance. Christ endured trials and suffering because of us. We can be strong in Him because He gives us strength in times of need. He who endured temptation will help guide our hearts to turn away from evil and put the enemy under our heel. And we ought to run with endurance the race that lies before us. And let us be confident in the end and boldly declare ‘I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.’
Smart is useless if we don’t have the discipline. I realised that now. For instance, if we try to achieve things without caring for our basic needs, we will be sick. Discipline to exercise, to have a healthy body is also difficult. Another thing is spiritual discipline for those religion where you ought to read the Bible and pray everyday. Reading the Bible ought not to be as a means of getting God’s approval but it is to deepen our relationship to Him and be renewed in our thinking also to be able to discern what is right and wrong. Years of wrong thinking or believing something negative about yourself can make you defensive, frustrated, lethargic. It is then also important to take the time to meditate, to reduce the chatter in the mind. Currently, I am doing what I enjoy, starting again, to draw and paint, which is also a discipline when setting aside time for it and to practice it. In addition, I am also preparing for my studies in class, reading bit by bit to finish my law books and supplementary materials.
One thing everyone has to do is to get up early, which is also a discipline! Setting aside time to do routine, quiet time, shower, breakfast, do art, music, writing, and studying. Keeping consistent while focusing on the goal of finishing my Master of Laws at University of Sydney. It requires effort to unlearn all the negatives in me, and starting to practice the good habits. However so, I am learning to do it step by step to reach the goal until the end when I finish the race in this lifetime.
Anger. Where does it come from? It may be due to the feeling of unfairly treated, frustrations, unfulfilled expectations… For instance, tired of studying and not getting results… tired of losing weight because it is hard to control food intake. Frustration because of the feeling of getting nowhere, and being in a place where you are stuck and unable to be productive. Unfulfilled expectation where you expect that person to do something for you but it did not happen.
In James 1:19,20 it says , “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.”
When we feel angry, we tend to not listen to other people, talk back and burst in anger. The words of truth says in relation to anger, we should listen first on what that person has to say, process it and take time to speak, and control our anger. How do we do that?
In the continuing verses, in James it is said, that we could refrain from sinning in anger by reading the word of God. As we are embraced in the truth, we begin to see what God wants…
Maybe we are so tired and weary that we become frustrated and angry… God says in Matthew 11:28-30,”Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” In our anger and tiredness, turn to Jesus and learn from him to be humble (realising we need help from God and not our own power) and gentle (strength in control: emotions under control) by walking in step with him. That is the way to lead a life with no burdens and have a peaceful life with anger in control.
The song “Pribadi yang mengenal hatiku” is the title of my post. God knows… God understands what you are going through.. He knows the emotion you are feeling.. He knows your anger, frustrations, disappointments, presumptions. Basically, he created you in your mother’s womb, knows the number of your hair…and he loves you dearly. You are the apple of his eye.
In Psalm 42:11 really describes my emotion in the past few days. “Why, my soul, are you so dejected? Why are you in such turmoil? Put your hope in God, for I will still praise him, my Saviour and my God.” Negative thoughts overwhelm me and the presumptions I had of myself came back and made me angry and frustrated again.
When the lies keep coming, negativity arises… God reminds me, despite the turmoils in my soul & emotion, God understands… Put your hope in Him, friends… He will not disappoint… The presuppositions you had that you are not good enough for anything, God sees you as something precious in Christ. He will use you in great ways once you start accepting and believing what He says…
To close, let this verse remind you of God’s goodness in all circumstances. “In the multitude of my thoughts within me thy comforts delight my soul”-Psalm 94:19 KJV. When I have so much worries that they overcome me… When I feel stress and anger building up my throat. You alone Lord gives me comfort and peace. Your truth and promises release me from these burdens… Your comfort brings me joy and peace. Worries becomes peace.
How to know if you are a child of God? How to be sure of salvation? How to know when the Holy Spirit is sealed upon you? Only God knows because He chooses the ones He loves and is pleased with.
What then can we do about our journey of faith? Truly, people who is chosen before the beginning of the world will create fruits. But what if we do not see fruits? It is a process, a lifetime process of growing into a tree and bearing fruits. In Galatians 5:22, the Bible says: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” It is the fruit not fruits, so all of it has to be present.
So then, when we are baptised are we actually reborn? How are we certain we have the promise to be called His children.. When someone is being reborn, it is true to believe that, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and see, the new has come!” as stated in 2 Corinthians 5:17. In Galatians 3:27, “For those of you who were baptized into Christ have been clothed with Christ.”
Only God has the omniscience to decide who He will choose and glorify with Him. Then we must also work our salvation with seriousness as in Philippians 2:12-13. Then, isn’t faith enough? What you meant by that is only knowledge faith, but true faith births love which then focuses us to have the thinking and feeling of God which produces action which pleases God. So friends, let us not lose hope on this faith journey, on becoming closer and closer to God, and to love Him more and by loving Him with our action towards Him, others and ourselves.
Worry or anxiety is something that most people will experience. Worry comes from thinking too much about something. Just like the tentacles of an octopus, a thought will branch out to many thoughts. Thoughts about the future and uncertain things that has yet to happened. Worry is common, but there will be an extent in time when the worry will become overwhelming that it consumes you and makes you sick.
The question is, “How to get rid of worry?“. The answer is trusting that God has the best plan for you. Whatever season in life you are in, trusting God leads to inner joy, peace and contentment. It is said, “Do not worry about anything but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
This is a verse that I have to remind myself daily. It is very easy to get consumed with thoughts, negative thoughts, pessimistic thoughts, hope-breaking thoughts if we do not direct our thoughts and focus on God. How God clothes flowers and feeds the birds, how will he also take care of His children. I myself struggle with this daily, worrying about my future, what will I be, what job will I do, and so much other things. But to remember that God has the best interest for me, and not to worry about anything, because He provides, He is faithful, He is good, and He never disappoints.
What is grace? Grace is that we do not deserve something but yet we get it. The picture of the bird is a symbolism for somebody. And the rose is a symbolism for that grace. The leaves are the symbolism for the different phases of life we go through. Imagine a bird, flying. One day, it got injured and broke its leg. It cannot fly for awhile and cannot feed itself. And next to the bird is a rose. The bird can ponder upon its beauty. While it takes time to heal itself, the bird just looks at the beauty of the rose. Slowly, as time goes by, the bird is healed again. The bird would never forget how the rose helped it have hope and meaning in life while it is recovering. Same goes in our lives, when we are hurt, there is Someone out there who cares for us, and is looking over us, giving us the peace and joy during the hardest test of times. So, please enjoy the picture and the poetry I have done and ponder… ponder about the grace you have been given. The grace to still breathe, live, and enjoy things in your life you currently have now.
Psalm 37:4 says ” Take delight in the Lord and He will give you your heart’s desires.” A lot of times this is taken out of context, does it mean that when we enjoy His presence, He will give what we want. It must be taken into account the previous verse and the continuing verses. The more we delight in the Lord and trust in Him, our wants will focus on what God wants for our life. His desires becomes our desires. As we spend more time with Him, we will learn to please Him and will want what He wants.
I don’t know what is the dangers of wants and deepest desires, but it could lead people to places, scary places if we do not put our eyes towards Him, if we do not walk with Him. Being wealthy, having a partner, good job, good education and being healthy are valid desires, however the desires should be directed towards Him, Jesus at the centre. If He is at the centre, being rich is not greedy, rather being humble and helping others; having a partner means having a soulmate, one you give your whole body, heart, soul to the one who loves God foremost and us before himself or herself; having a good education or job means accepting any school or job that God placed you because that place will make you grow wiser and mature and that it will be a place of learning; being healthy mentally means changing your thoughts to His thoughts, your actions to His actions and not letting people’s opinion affect you, rather standing grounded in God’s love, acceptance and affection for you and me.