About Me

This blog is dedicated to the glorification of my King Jesus Christ.

Monday, December 13, 2010

cold winter blue

cold winter blue skies enter
chase away the warm sun--
the light of day.
the season changes from warm to cold, from life to death.... is this a new time for renewing what was lost? or losing what once was?

should it be
thought of as the sun entering into its rest,
or should it be
thought of as the cold overtaking the sunlight of life?
should it be
peace in knowing that the sun will rise again, that there in the death of the barren snow there comes a renewal, a restoration of life in the next season--

or do i see
the winter?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

intercession for the transgressor-- day 33 of 40

"Recently I was meditating on the beauty of Christ’s intercession or, should I say, the beauty of his brutal and bloody work on the cross. There was nothing about his life that was sterile, painless, and plastic. He was a man of sorrows acquainted with grief, but for the joy set before Him of the harvest of souls, he endured the cross and despised the shame. Christ was an intercessor.

The difference between prayer and intercession is that in intercession we offer our bodies as a living sacrifice. We walk the Via Dolorosa. We bear the reproach. Our death becomes the highway upon which the captives walk over to freedom.

A few years ago, one of our leaders had a dream. In the dream, a prophetic father was speaking with me and before us stood a great field with brush and thorns. Beyond the field was a great field of splendid wheat. He said to me in the dream, “The harvest is guaranteed if you can make it through the thorns.” Jesus made it through the thorns on His head for the joy set before Him. May we continue through the thorns for the guaranteed harvest!"

-Lou Engle

wow... to be an intercessor like Jesus... is so humbling to think about. He paid it all, he suffered and endured through everything. and if christ is our example, we too must give it all. this is the life of an intercessor. Suffering is written in the blood of those who fully give their lives to Christ, but joy evermore and everlasting is found at their right hand.
Jesus make me an intercessor for your namesake.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

day 30 of 40-- Living a lifestlye of prayer that moves mountains (part II)

“And He went up on the mountain and called to Him those He Himself wanted. And they came to Him. Then He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach, and to have power to heal sicknesses and to cast out demons.” (Mark 3:13-15)

Reflection: Our prayer must not only move God to action, but our prayers must also move us to action. Mark 3 tells the story of Jesus calling His disciples. The first reason He called the disciples was so they might “be with Him.” The first call of prayer is to “be with Jesus.” But the result of the disciples being with Jesus was that they were sent to preach the Gospel with power. We must not be satisfied with our prayer meetings unless there is a sending that happens once we’ve been with Jesus. Our prayer life must result in our lives demonstrating God in power and love. Too many times we continually ask God to do what He has already commissioned us to do. Our prayer meetings become huddles that never require movement from us. Many times God responds to our prayers by equipping and empowering us to be the very answers to our prayers. But in order for those prayers to be answered we must be moved to action. God has anointed us with the Holy Spirit for a reason: so impossible situations will bow the knee to Jesus. The Bible says that the heavens belong to God but the earth has been given to man; we need to take responsibility over what is ours.

If we’re not careful, our prayers can become cries for revival in the distant future and not doorways to revival in the present. Jesus gave us authority over demons, sickness, disease, and darkness so we could bring His reality to earth right now. But our prayers must move us to action if that authority is to manifest. While we must continue to have prayer meetings where we cry out for God’s Kingdom to show up, there must be times when we step out and see God’s Kingdom show up through our lives.

Prayer: Jesus, we want to be sent by You to touch a lost and dying world. You have given us authority on the earth to see Your Kingdom come and so we pray that You would give us the courage to become the very answer to our prayers. May our prayers not only stir the heavens, but may they stir our own souls to move with You as You move on the earth.


day 30 of 40

" If added power attends the united prayer of two or three, what mighty triumphs there will be when hundreds of thousands of consistent members of the Church are with one accord day by day making intercession for the extension of Christ’s Kingdom.

(John R. Mott)

Friday, November 5, 2010

day 29 of 40-- Living a lifestlye of prayer that moves mountains

For since the beginning of the world men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen any God besides You, who acts for the one who waits for Him.” (Isaiah 64:4)

“The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him.” (Lamentations 3:25)

Reflection: “For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.” In other words, if you throw a ball at a brick wall, that ball is going to bounce off that wall and come back to you. Action causes action. This is what we are looking for when we pray. One of the most powerful actions in the universe is prayer. Therefore, true prayer must produce and cause action. It’s time we become unsatisfied with anything less than our prayers resulting in action!

God is moved to action by our prayers. He is listening intently and is eager to respond to the cries of our heart. Throughout Scripture we see the picture of God not only listening to prayer but responding to prayer. Isaiah 64:4 could be paraphrased by saying, “God is moved to action by those who seek Him.” That’s incredible! It’s prayer that ‘awakens’ God to move in our city and in our lives. It’s prayer that pierces the heavens and gets God’s attention. So we pray, believing that the God we serve loves to show up in response to our prayers. For too long the Church has been satisfied with incomplete prayers.**Our prayer meetings actively engage in the first part of prayer – asking, seeking, and knocking. But prayer is not only asking, seeking, and knocking.Prayer is also receiving, finding, and having doors open. If we don’t believe for and look for the second part of prayer then we are settling for incomplete prayers.

As you pray, look with great anticipation for God to respond to your prayers, for He is moved to action by your intercession.

Prayer: God, we pray that You would find faith in the earth. A church that actively believes You respond to prayer and eagerly looks for that response in their lives, cities, and campuses.


super touched by yesterday's devotional for the 21-day campus wide fast-- what a great revelation to recieve!
yes, when we pray, we are asking, seeking, and knocking. petitioning to the lord, seeking direction/ guidance, and hoping to see more breakthroughs in the our lives as well as the loves of others. But if prayer moves mountains, if prayer brings action, then we should also expect prayer to usher in the same movement when we ask, seek, and knock. what happens when we ask? we will recieve. what happens when we seek? we will find. and what happens when we knock? then doors will be opened to us. How much do you really believe in prayer? is prayer merely inward focused, designed to align your will with God's will, or is it also outward focused, purposed to propel the kingdom forward and to change things in the world as we speak forth truth?

"So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. 23 For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will come to pass, he will have whatever he says. 24 Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them."
(Mark 11:22-24)

thus, brothers and sisters-- prayer that moves into action. amen and hallelujiah! This is the true heart of an intercessor.

For more day by day devotionals during the 21-day campus-wide fast, visit

god bless and keep persevering! :D
Lots of love


Thursday, November 4, 2010

day 28 0f 40

i was starting to grow weary. last week i found myself burning out, running around doing this or that, going to this prayer meeting or another. My quiet times with God were diminishing significantly. once again, i was being more of a martha than a mary... for one reason or another, I just couldnt sit still. and when I did have some quiet times with god, it seemed harder to connect with him. I was drained out, and what i gave to Jesus weren't the golden hours of my time; rather they were the last-minute moments of my day, wimpy measures of effort to set aside some time for God-- yet it wasnt whole-hearted devotion.

I kept on asking Him,
Lord, why is it that its harder for me to connect with you? why doesn't your presence fill me like it did before when i woke up in the morning or when i read the word, or even when i pray? Lord, am I not seeking your face? am i not desiring to know you lord? Jesus, why does my heart indicate to me that something is amiss... god please enlighten my eyes and show me the areas of my life i need to turn away from...

it was then when i realized that i wasnt giving him all my devotion. I thought i was, because i was doing so many things for him. and i thought i was fervently seeking after him because i was involved with so many prayer meetings...but my attention was divided with ministry , the "things i needed/ felt obligated to do" when in actualilty, god didnt specifically ordain me to do them. I had taken on the self-righteous mentality of "if i don't do it, if im not going to these prayer meetings or doing this and that, then no one else will and nothing will happen."
I was again, caught up in doing things for god and equating his pleasure for me with how much i could do for him, and even expecting him to move according to how much i did or howmany prayer meetings i went to.

but last night i was reminded again, that its not what we can do or how much we can do for god, rather, its about how much we allow God to do things through us.
Because in the end, we are not the ones moving mountains, we are only allowing God to move and work in the way he wants to.

Monday, October 25, 2010

It's not a revival

its not about encountering a new movement of God across the campuses, across this nation.
its not even about witnessing a new revival.
revival is just a fancy term, just a to describe the very core of what an awakening is—
because its ultimately just seeking after the face of god.

continually beholding the face of god, continually drinking in his presence is the core of a revival. Revival is essentially intimately and powerfully beholding his face in a way that transforms everything inside of us, a metamorphosis that unfolds into a new creation. because we cannot give what we do not have, if we are not continuously seeking his face, then we cannot allow other people to see his face. we cannot bring heaven down to earth because Heaven is God’s magnificent, overwhelming and intoxicating presence and glory.

But its not even about revival. yes, revival is good... and every beat of my heart cries out for a new awakening of God, for God to shake up our lives and the lives of every soul in this nation. But this weekend I realized that I had been putting my hopes in the wrong thing. yes, my soul cries for more fire to consume all of the people around me, for revival to shake the very grounds of my campus, my church, and this nation... but my hope is not in revival... my hope is in Jesus.

revival is the arrival of the Lord’s glory, and in his breathtaking and shining glory is his POWER and his PRESENCE. it is in his presence that we behold his splendor...and it is also in his presence that everything else will follow. This weekend God kept on reiterating to me through sermons how vital his presence, intimacy with god, was in my life. Jesus calls us to intimacy by telling us to abide in him like a branch stays connected to the vine... without the vine, the branches would wither away. yet, as jesus calls us to abide in him, he is also inviting us to live in complete dependency and communion with him, cultivating intimacy through that connection. And through this connection, through the intimacy with Jesus he promises us that we will bear fruit! so if we keep seeking after the face of god, everything will come after that—revival, breakthroughs, anointings, joy, and all the other fruits of the spirit.


today is the first day of the California campus wide 21 day Daniel fast, and I cant contain my excitement because I know the Lord will come like a brilliant and pure song resounding in our hearts. I know there will be breakthroughs and shiftings in the atmosphere to prepare the way for more of the glory of god!

as for UCI, we plan to gather 3 times a day to pray during this fast: 7am, 12pm, and 7pm.
but because of this weekend, now more than ever, I don’t want UCI to be known as the place where revival broke forth, but a place where students are radically in love with the Lord, who fervently seek his face every moment of their lives. I want UCI to be an army of lovers, deeply in love and consumed with his glory. because honestly, God is more concerned about our hearts and our intimacy with him than he is about revival, for revival is only a byproduct of the goodness of experiencing his face.

its not a revival. its people gathered hungrily and fervently seeking after His glorious face.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Day 13 of 40-- prayer request #2

This weekend was by far one of the hardest weekends I have had this whole year.

I came back home to Pasadena on Friday, and the minute I got home tensions were so high between my mom and I. I don't really want to go into so much detail, but my mom started scrutinizing everything about me and then wouldn't talk to me, and at the dinner table she couldn't stop talking about why I was fasting. After dinner my sister and I drove to church for Friday night fellowship, and on the way there I cried because I felt so rejected by my mom and I kept thinking about how I should have handled this situation differently...

Since I could remember, my mom hasn't been this mad at me for at least years... and the same arguing continued saturday, and into sunday. It got even worse when grace stepped in to try to help my mom understand, and then they were arguing as well.

later that sunday night i was talking with my sister and i became so convicted of my sins and how often my pride can cause me to think that I am always right. I had been wanting to take out the needle in someone else's eyes when there was such a huge problem in my own eyes. I had been complaining about wanting my parents to have a change of mind and a softened heart towards this situation, and ive been desiring so desperately for them to understand why I am doing these things, that it's not just because I'm "crazy"; yet, I have failed to understand them and see things from their eyes.
If I want them to change... I must change first. How can I expect them to change if I am unwilling to change? Why should I expect someone to understand me, when I should be first reconciling with them and assessing all their concerns and the reasons for worry?

yes... i do feel a bit persecuted by my family... but even when Jesus was mocked at, trampled on, and beaten-- he still loved his enemies. The son of God, who was completely holy and blameless, did not even consider for one moment now badly he was being treated, but only focused on even saving those who wanted to kill him. For the Jesus did not come into the world to be ministered to, but to give his life up as a ransom for many--even the ones who hated and killed him!

I am again, in desperate need of God's grace in my life, for me to have this same attitude towards my family and even all those who will hate me...
more humbleness and grace to love my parents the way God loves them, despite the circumstances or the arguments that may occur...to learn how to appreciate them and see how beloved they are through god's eyes. And more love in general because love conquers all and overcomes all and prevails through all... this is my prayer for now.

other than that, God is still very very very good! wish i had time to write it all though, but i will try to post a few things (hopefully short things :]) haha.

God bless!
keep pressing into Him and keep praying because theres SO MUCH POWER in prayer. Its like the invisible force behind every major/ or minor battle ;]

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I shall not want -- day 7 of 40

Oh Lord... I really do have to repent for making this fast more about the foods I could/couldnt eat than about my state of mind and heart.
This daniel fast is to abstain from worldly pleasures by rejecting any pleasurable foods (hence, no meats or sweets) but its ultimately about rejecting any worldly desires that may come across--to forgo desirable foods in the physical sense is actually only a tangible representation of what is happening in the spiritual sense: to deny oneself of one's own yearnings.

And I was just walking around UCI finding myself in want-- in want of more I guess? To be more like this person, or that person, or to want what this person has and that person had... and not truly being satisfied with the way God made me/ gifted me. Sigh... imagine how God must feel when he sees me behaving that way... eekk!
>.< not goooodd... especially because he created me with such specificity and perfection-- and he does ALL things well. ALL THINGS WELL. Who me? haha... yes... even me. All of creation is good-- but when he created man, He said that it was VERY GOOD.

And its so so funny the way God uses my classes to speak to me. In my English class we read a poem by Shakepeare (Sonnet 29); which spoke directly to my desirous state:

When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes,
I all alone beweep my outcast state,
And trouble deaf Heaven with my bootless cries,
And look upon myself, and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
Featur'd like him, like him with friends possess'd,
Desiring this man's art, and that man's scope,
With what I most enjoy contented least:

Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,
Haply I think on Thee,--and then my state
Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven's gate;
For Thy sweet love remember'd such wealth brings
That then I scorn to change my state with kings.
-William Shakespeare

haha yes... the lord is super sweet :,].I made a few tweeks at the end of the poem... Shakespeare meant to write this about a woman, but I capitalized the "Thee" so that it refers to God (far better than any love on earth! ;])-- and I knew He was using this poem to speak to me, telling me,
"What more do you want when you have the GREATEST, UNCHANGING, COVANENTIAL, SACRIFICIAL love that is Me? What more can you find in this world that can outmatch Who I am or what I have already given you?"

and oh, when i think of Christ's vast, unconditional love for me... man! I would never trade my position even for the state of kings!
I dwell with the Most High King who has given me MORE than i could ever ask or even hope for! I am his warrior-princess, for he has armed me STRONG for battle... and its not even a battle to be lost! there is ensured victory since the day of creation.

so my prayer now is that the Lord would continue to fill me with the fullness of Christ, that he may dwell RICHLY and ABUNDANTLY in me so that I may never be in want, but in COMPLETE SATISFACTION in Him that is perfection, in him where there is no lack. To be completely and utterly satisfied with Christ is to live life with the fullest and most wonderful abundance. This is my prayer.

The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not want;
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters;
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for His name's sake.

Even though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil;
for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life;
and I shall dwell in the house of the
Lord forever.
-Psalm 23

Monday, October 11, 2010

day 4 of 40, Prayer request #1

Please pray that my parents would have softened hearts towards me as I continue to pursue God…yesterday my mom called me at 10:30 p.m. and gave me a 30-minute lecture on how I shouldn’t be too extreme about God. She said that God wanted me to take care of my body, and that he provided so many resources for me so I should take advantage of them and make sure ‘m eating right. She said,

“Joyce, I can accept if you want to fast for a day or two, but 40 days?! Don’t you think that’s too extreme?! Why are you even fasting?? And don’t give me the ‘God told me to fast answer; I don’t want to hear it. How do you even know God told you to fast? You don’t need to fast… just because Daniel fasted in the Old testament doesn’t mean that you need to too… we’re living in the new testament now. And what churches have you been going to lately? It better not be those churches where they get into the spirit , because they get too crazy….”

What should I do?… I know my mom loves me… and I really love her too… and I know she’s worried about me because she loves me. She only lectures me because she wants me to be healthy and has my best in mind. I didn’t expect her to buy me groceries… I was just going to Albertson’s and buy what I needed, but my mom ended up getting vegetables for me… thankyou mom… she even cooked vegetarian soup for me :’].

My parents came to drop off my food for me yesterday night at 1 a.m. and we were clearing the fridge of all the meats and things I couldn’t eat for now. When I handed my rice to my mom, my dad looked at me with the most disgusted/ angry face I have ever seen…

“You can’t even eat RICE??! Even vegetarians can eat rice! What kind of fast are you doing?!?”

Of course… he couldn’t really raise his voice at me because we were inside my hall, but it made me feel so hurt, because my dad totally disapproves of my fast and hates that I’m fasting because he thinks I’m throwing my life away… I need more grace to love my dad…

Please pray for grace to love my parents and for their change of heart. I would love them to support me in my fast… and I truly want them to know god more… my dad isn’t Christian, so every time I do something “extreme” he just thinks im crazy…. I just want them to know god and understand why giving up everything for him is worth it.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

how it all began...

on Tuesday as I was reading the bible in the student center, suddenly God told me to go on a 40-day Daniel fast. really god? what should I pray about while I fast?
and all these thoughts swept in my mind, such as ... if I don’t eat anymore sweets, how will I stay awake in class? god, will I have enough energy to survive during the day? Who is going to keep me accountable? will I be doing this alone...
but okay god if you want me to I will fast... please bring me clarity and vision while I fast...

it was not long from that moment that god then revealed to me why he wanted me to fast. The next day on Wednesday night some people from International House of Prayer came down to UC Irvine doing something they call the Purple Pig Tour. These people came all the way from Kansas city to California, visiting multiple colleges to encourage them to start revivals on campus and calling them to a culture of prayer and a life of mission. It was here that the speaker said, “ I am encouraging you to live the same lifestyle that Daniel did, to fast and pray, to be set apart from everyone else in your campus so that things can actually happen, so that revival can break forth from the place of prayer. It’s not enough to just sit and listen to a good message! we’ve heard too many! There needs to be an inward conviction that moves into action.”

As The speaker was saying this, everything in the inside of me was screaming,
YES LORD! YES JESUS! we need to pray and contend for revival! We need a new Jesus movement Lord! if we don’t take action, Lord, people are going to die... I don’t want to just sit in the sidelines God and let things be... someone needs to rise up...

~~ And suddenly the reason for doing the 40-day Daniel fast became clear to me--he wanted me to pray for revival! haha... he was calling me to be set apart, like Daniel was in the midst of Babylon, in the midst of idolatry and sin. And suddenly I knew—He doesn’t want me to do this on my own, he wanted me to mobilize the faithful so that we can all contend together as ONE BODY for God’s coming, for when two or more are gathered, there God is also. He wanted to give to others the same conviction of fasting he gave to me, and he was calling me to challenge the other students in UCI to fast along with me. God WANTS revival to happen in Irvine! He is SO DESIRIOUS to come forth like a mighty and rushing wind, to sweep people off their feet, to bring a new movement that would usher in a numerous amount of souls into His kingdom. That is what God wanted ever since day one, and that is his burning passion—to see His glory manifest among ALL nations, and to see people saved and come to have the intimate knowledge of Him. oh, how he desires for all to know—to truly know Him and to fellowship and commune with him daily. He is like an all-consuming fire, there is none as desirous as He.... he is just waiting for his people who desire Him, who are willing to do whatever it is He is calling them to do.

I’m so excited for what God is about to do... I’m so excited and I’m praying for a new revival... But before God brings a new revival to our nation, there needs to be a reviving in us. Have you lost your first love for Jesus? Does your heart burn for him the same way that he burns for you? How worthy is he to you? And if he truly is as worthy as we say he is, if he truly is as worthy as all the angels in heaven say he is, if he truly is the worthy lamb that was slain—then what are we doing to show how worthy he is?
I just came back this weekend from a fuel school conference, and I was tackled with this same question to ponder. The speaker spoke directly to my heart—

“There is a WORTHY lamb that was slain for OUR own iniquities, and if we truly understood that, we would give him EVERYTHING; there needs to be a proportionate response to the magnitude of his worthiness.”

Jesus’ worthiness is so magnificent that the only proportionate response to the enormity of his holiness and worthiness is to offer up our WHOLE lives to him...
I myself needed to repent of this, for I had lost that burning first love I had when He first unveiled himself before me.
Lord, do I truly understand how worthy You are? If I truly did grasp it, my life would look so different! Everything I do, every moment I have, and every breath I take would be for you and your kingdom... God unveil my eyes! I need to see you and your full glory Lord... God be my consuming fire...Be my true love....

Brothers and sisters I also challenge you with this question—how worthy is Jesus to you? Is he worthy enough for you to give your whole life to him? Is he still first in your heart? return to him... he is beckoning you to a deeper love relationship with him...

Come, let us return to the LORD.
He has torn us to pieces
but he will heal us;
he has injured us
but he will bind up our wounds.
2 After two days he will revive us;
on the third day he will restore us,
that we may live in his presence.
3 Let us acknowledge the LORD;
let us press on to acknowledge him.
As surely as the sun rises,
he will appear;
he will come to us like the winter rains,
like the spring rains that water the earth."
(Hosea 6:1-3)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

adventures in spontaneity and divine happenings

is being able to ride the metro subway and watch the fascinating scenery as I turn my head towards the window, enjoying the new landscape that passes through the tinted glass.
theres something about taking a trip on the subway that gives me peace. maybe it’s the fact that im traveling, that im independent, that I can just go wherever I want whenever I want. I can just sit back, relax, listen, meditate, and observe and know that im still heading somewhere, that I have a direction.

today was such an interesting day.
it was definitely a spontaneous trip, but nonetheless divine. Who knew that taking the goldline subway/railway would be so interesting? god had placed divine appointments and places for me to stop by despite the fact that my decision to travel on the subway was so impulsive. which amazingly, is another aspect that shows his sovereignty—despite the fact that my decision to go somewhere was so unplanned, god had still used it for his glory, placing people that he specifically wanted me to meet, that he had indeed planned for me to meet in the midst of my spontaneity.

I had decided to take to goldline to check out my workplace, to make sure that I knew how to travel there by train so I wouldn’t get lost when I do start my first day of work on Thursday (how exciting!). I got off at the LA union station and walked around to see how I would get to my next train, the purple line. A diverse array of people swarmed the trains and the corridors, and I was a little afraid—would I be safe? the place and the people were, you could say, a bit shady—for lack of a better term. when I looked at them, I could tell they had a story to tell, although some stories would be more painful than others. I saw their need, their blank expressions, their weary countenance, their limp bodily posture. ‘God will you help them’ I prayed. I was aware once again, how I live in a bubble, how I still don’t know suffering and how life is outside of sunshine and kisses.

as I was heading back out, this one man caught my eye... I had a feeling he wanted to talk to me. and as I was moving closer to him, he approached me and told me his story.
“could you help me? I need money to take the train to see my baby son. he’s in the hospital right now and I don’t have enough money to go there... he’s got a seizure, and he’s struggling to live right now. I need to see him... if you could spare me a dollar...”
and as I looked into his eyes, compassion flooded into me. even if his story was made up and even if he didn’t intend to use it for bus fare, I still wanted to help him. god help me to help him.... and so I gave him some money, hoping that he would use it for a noble purpose and not one that would be detrimental to his life.

“god bless you, thank you, thank you, god bless you”

I then asked him if I could pray for him. after I prayed, he ran off quickly, as if he was in a rush to get somewhere, and I continued on my way. but still I felt some unrest... for some reason, I felt the strong urge to pray—to pray for what? I wasn’t sure, but the spirit was prompting me to pray. and so I sat down on a bench and prayed.... seeking god and letting the holyspirit intercede for me... I realized during my prayer that the Holyspirit was praying for protection (protection from what?)... and again I was praying for the man I had just met, Louie. I was asking god to protect him as well, and for god to give me another chance to see him. and I was curious...god, is he really going to use the money for bus fare? was he really telling the truth? after my prayer, I walked back to the train to head back home—

and there he was.

but shockingly, he was surrounded by police. they were searching him, and they had him take off his shoes. when I saw him and he saw me, I couldn’t help but feel a bit hurt... betrayed even. I walked right past him without looking... I couldn’t explain really what I felt. I knew, and he knew that I knew, and I didn’t want to see him. I was then asking god why he had allowed me to meet Louie... and then I was reminded that I shouldn’t have avoided him the second time, that god had given me another chance to talk to him and when I saw him at the stairway, and I shouldve came up to him and asked if he needed anything more. God reminded me that I could’ve taken this opportunity to further show the Father’s love—His love that knows our every intention both good and wicked yet in His goodness, he still reaches out to us despite our sin.

Wow. God wanted me to show Louie that kind of love.
He let me see Louie at that particular moment in that particular state for a reason. I had seen him in his sin, I had caught him in the middle of a lie, yet God still wanted me to reach out to him and ask him if there was anything else I could help him with. when I made that realization, he had already ran away, probably to avoid seeing me or dealing with me. still my heart hurt for him... I wonder what he’s going through? why does he need money, what prompts him to lie? should I be so presumptuous as to assume that he wanted to buy more drugs and alcohol?

By then I was already riding the train back home. a girl then taped me and told me that she was lost. she had come from the san Fernando valley but somehow she ended up in LA and she didn’t know where she was or where she was going.
“Could you help me? im so lost, I don’t know this area. Im kind of stranded. I need to find Highland Park... do you know if this train goes there?”
She looked frightened. what was a young girl doing so far away from her home? I could only guess... probably she needed to get away from her house. I told her that the train does stop there, and that it was coming soon. I asked her if she needed me to help her find the Mcdonalds she was looking for—apparently that’s where the friend she was looking for lives close to. she looked at me—“really? yeah that would be great” and then the train stopped at Highland Park and she immediately got off, and I followed behind her. But like the other man, she ran off without looking behind her, and I wondered if she even knew that I got off behind her. weird... but... okay.

I got back on the train heading home again, and I decided to take a spontaneous detour and get off Mission st in South Pasadena instead of getting off Allen st. in Pasadena. Again, I guess its because I love to travel and I love to go wherever I feel led to go without having any restraints, traveling by spontaneity. The place that I got off at is like a cute, quiet little village (where Busters the coffee shop is located, and where AOW performed last year! :]) and I was strolling down the quiet streets when this shop caught my eye. I went inside... and I can honestly say it is one of the cutest and most artistic clothing shops I have ever seen. on the wall there were paintings don display... one of the most artistic, innovative, creative, meaningful, and beautiful paintings I have even seen. I was captured by the fascinating colors and the concepts/ materials that the artist used... and for some reason I felt like this artist received their ingenuity and creativity from god. it had to be from god... this artist was amazing.... I was completely captivated by their artwork. I then talked to the store owner and inquired about the paintings on display,

“Yes the artist that painted these is a dear friend of mine, but she currently works in a non-profit mission organization, and she creates paintings on the side. But art is her first passion. She loves everything about art, and every type of art, and she’s very good at all of them.”

wow god, is this not exactly like me?
I love everything about art, every aspect of it, and every form of art whether it be singing, writing, painting—any form of expression. every time I do something other than art, im always compelled to remember my passion for art, my passion to create and to make and to express. God I still don’t know what you intend to do with this passion, but Lord I believe that you put this burning desire in me for a reason. I was made to create. that much I know. to create art that brings love, light , and life into the world. I felt like god was using this store owner to speak to me. and I was right, the artist who created the paintings loves god with a passion... and it definitely shows through her artwork. God has blessed her with amazing talent.

so today was a completely spontaneous yet eventful/ insightful day. im still contemplating why god would have me meet the people that I met today, but there is no other word to describe today other than divine. divine appointing. as I was meditating on my day, I was surprised to see how god had used me and how he had brought me to the places that he wanted me to be at despite the fact that I had failed him so miserably and realized my sin so clearly a few days ago. I was humbled and shocked that he had yet again chosen to use me to show love despite the state I was in, regardless of the fact that I had outright told god that I didn’t know how to love, that I couldn’t love. It amazes me to see how much god still desires to use us and trusts us—humans, of all things!—and how he is oh so willing to incorporate us into the grand scheme of his amazing glory. I mean, heck, I cant even trust myself... but god trusts me enough to allow me to minister to people, despite my condition and my heart. amazing love. I am... humbled. amazing, amazing love. God, thank you for allowing me to minister to your people, and thank you Lord for ministering to me through the people you allowed me to minister to.

thank you lord, thank you. :']

no more of me

no more. no more of me no more.
I cant continue to do things my way and expect to still be walking alongside god, to gain a deeper intimacy with him.
no more of me.
I used to thing self-glorification was just taking the glory from god, praising yourself and thinking yourself higher than you ought to.
but now I realize that self-glorification has so many more facets.
not following god’s will is a form of self-glorification. doing God’s will is his ultimate glorification, and when one does not follow god’s will then that means they are following their own will, ultimately glorifying themselves.

no more of me no more.
I realize my selfishness and my pride issues run so deep, deep into the way I serve god.
I realize that I would be willing to do what god wants me to do only if it sits right with me—ultimately pleasing myself. I cant serve god when im serving myself. Being Christian isn’t easy...and if it is, you have to wonder why. I struggle constantly with god when he asks me to do something that I don’t want to do. Why? Because I don’t want to give up what I want, my issue of selfishness.
but its not about me... oh lord, its not about me. who am i? do I think of myself more highly than I ought?

I was contemplating for the longest time why this year was so... confusing for me. I mean, no doubt this year was amazing and God is so good, but I didn’t feel grounded—I felt as if I was wandering the grounds in search for a place to belong. I was a bird walking on land instead of flying the heights of the deep sky, soaring with the powerful currents of wind that god leads me to. For some reason, I felt like I wasn’t where god wanted me to be. This journey of searching for the promised land that god was calling me to took me on a wild journey searching for churches and fellowships and just places where I thought he might me calling me to, and unfortunately, this search led me to some unfortunate places. But still, I felt like a wandering nomad, I felt like a foreigner in a land that wasn’t meant for me. Why has this year been a year of directionless wandering for me?
The question that I would ask him constantly is Lord where am I going? could this feeling of restlessness also be a result of not willing to submit to the path he has placed before me, from my desire to implement my plan over His will?

yesterday he showed me my sin in full, and when I realized the depth of my sin, I didn’t know what to do. it was as if a monstrous beast arose inside of me and I didn’t know who I was anymore. In the midst of the chaotic depression I cried out to god in my shame-- Lord who am I?? Lord, I don’t think I can be everything you want me to be, lord im not ready. I cant do this lord, im sorry god, im sorry. I don’t think I can do what youre calling me to do god... im such a failure lord, I cant serve you when im serving myself lord. Lord im sorry I cant.

When I saw how I was only willing to do what God wants me to when I want to do it, I realized—im not even serving god! im only serving him on my own terms, ultimately pleasing myself! I have been glorifying myself this whole time while I was trying and claiming to glorify god! I cant do this, I cant... I need to submit to god., to his pleasing and perfect will. whatever happened to giving my whole heart fully for god? surely I am not if I am still clinging on to my desires. and as god continued to reveal my sin to me, I sat in a state of condemnation. I was so ashamed of myself for claiming to love god with all my heart, yet still not giving him my full heart...what was wrong with me? I couldn’t face god, knowing that I wasn’t truly loving him the way he had called me to love—to love him with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength.

this feeling of heaviness continued to permeate through my heart and my soul for the next couple days. When I get into the heavy state of guilt, its so hard to remind myself that I shouldn’t condemn myself, that really, there is still no condemnation because of Christ Jesus. That no matter how great the magnitude of sin, Christ’s love covers an even greater multitude of sins, far more than the whole weight of the world’s iniquities combined. Its so hard not to keep in that blinding state of sin, to resist from condemning myself after seeing all the things I had committed against him.

then at night I finally came before god, completely broken and just aware of how I was so desperately in need of his love. Finally, after running from god and trying to hide my face from him in shame, I finally came back to him crying on my knees. And right then, at the very moment I finally submitted to him after trying to avoid Him, I felt God’s love embracing me, caressing me, reassuring me even before I could even utter my words of regret and sorrow. Right when my knees hit the ground, the Lord’s love flooded into my heart and cast aside all the burden and the condemnation that was weighing my heart with excruciating heaviness.

He was already waiting for me, waiting for me to come to him because he already had his arms open wide. With his love he beckoned me to approach him, with his love he invited me in despite the state I was in. it was his kindness that drew me nearer to him. Imagine that. he loved me, and he is still loving me despite anything that I do, no matter how great my offense was to him, no matter how often I fail him. its completely unfathomable. yet his love covers a multitude of sins, and his perfect love casts out any and all fear. after seeing the extent to which I had failed god and how I am so desperately in need of him-- to those who has been forgiven much loves much. I pray that I will only continue to understand the depth of my sin and the great extent to which all my iniquities have been washed away, wiped away completely clean with not one speck of dirt remaining, for when I truly comprehend how much Ive been forgiven, that is when I will begin to love those around me more.

perfect love casts out fear,
and Jesus’ unfailing love covers an ocean, a universe, an entire history of sin.
His love most definitely covers a multitude of sins.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Heart change

recently ive been asking god for a heart change.
for a complete transformation of my heart, for him to banish all wickedness and all the muck and slimy and grimy dirt that is inside of me.
because lord knows I need it.

ive been asking god to help me love.
like... to really, truly love. to put others needs before my own. to consider them of more worth than me. The type of love in its purest and truest form described in 1 Corinthians.
and what does this entail?
it means giving them more time than you would yourself. it means putting aside the things your homework, your obligations, the things you want to do when you know that your friend is in need. it means being willing to lay down my life for all my friends and even enemies, no matter how close or how unclose we are. to truly love at that deep level is—so, so hard.

sometimes I get tempted to look at how much I fail at loving. how I don’t put others before me, how I don’t know how to care for others, how I still judge people, how I don’t think about my actions and the consequences they have.
looking at how much I fail at loving, or even how I fail in life in general makes my heart feel so heavy, so weighed down.
I always find myself going back to him, telling him, lord im so sorry. im so sorry I wasn’t more patient with her. im so sorry I didn’t consider how my actions would affect him. im so sorry lord, for not reaching out the people who need to know you more.

I just came back from a conference yesterday, and god had told me that he was proud of me. he told me that three times. I couldn’t believe it. the lord? proud of me? what did I ever do to gain his pleasure and his delight? yet its so true... he delights in me because he sees me as pure, he sees me beautiful, he sees where my heart is—my desire to love, my desire to glorify him, my desire to be pure and holy. yet although my outwardly actions do not even come close to where I am aspiring to be, the Lord knows I still desire to be pleasing to him, and that is why he delights in me. he doesn’t see me for the state I am in now, yet he sees me for who I am made in Him. its amazing how the Lord doesn’t see me and my sin, but how I am made new because of Him through Christ Jesus. The Lord’s vision constantly amazes me. How he sees us in completely different eyes. when I look at myself, most times I’m not pleased—I realize over and over again it’s the result of my tendency to look at who I am not rather than who God is. Yet the Lord told me he is pleased in me. the lord told me I was beautiful, and that he loves me. the lord told me that I was special, that he finds so much delight in me, that I am the one who ravishes his heart. And if the Lord says so, it is truth.

truth. its so beautiful.
truth. something that is so rare in a world that distorts the truth from something concrete and absolute to a mere preference, an inclination, a liking. If this seems right to me, then its my truth—you can believe in what you want, and let me believe in what I want. If I like it, and if it fits me, then yeah, I will believe in it. What has truth become? A selfish preference out of a convenience to fit the way they see the world and how they want to perceive the things around them.

but I know what is true.
god is truth.
and he’s proven that to me over and over and over again.
the fact that God’s love is so abundant and so sufficient and so overreaching and so sacrificial and so pure and so glorious is truth.
and he’s revealed that to me over and over and over again.
God’s word is truth.
And if the Lord tells me that he delights in me, that he is proud of me, that he considers me his pure joy, then I need to start changing my vision so that it aligns with the Lord my God’s perspective.

God Loves. He loves you so dearly and so abundantly.