Tag Archive | faith

Day 25 — The person you know that is going through the worst of times

God uses even the bitterness of tears to cleanse our hearts and unveil the sweetness of our souls. ~ from Reflections


To someone infinitely precious,

You are one of the most amazing people I have ever met.  There’s a light inside you, a glow, that comes from your soul, and it shines on everyone around you. You are sweet and beautiful and kind. And you are also one of the strongest women I know.

But you don’t always have to be. You’re allowed to be weak sometimes, to break down. You’re allowed to feel whatever you feel, whether or not it makes sense. Right now, you don’t feel like being wise, or capable, or ideal. It’s okay. People may have put you on a pedestal, but you don’t have to stay there.  I love you, whether you’re standing tall with a smile or kneeling down crying. Others will, too. The ones that matter, the ones that deserve you, will love you anyway.

You are dearer to me than my own heart. And it hurts so much because I know this darkness well — I am familiar with it, in a way that I had hoped that you will never, ever have to be. But despite the pain I’m feeling for you, I know that your light is bright enough. It may flicker, but it will never completely go out. I know this because I know the Source of your flame, and it is eternal. It will lead you through the dark and into the dawn again.

I believe in you always. And I may not be close enough to hold your hand, but in every beat of my heart, there’s a prayer for you, and a dose of faith that all will be well.  I love you so, so much. You are not alone.

Always,

Me

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Day 6 — A Stranger

Never let another steal your magnificence. ~ Alison Stormwolf


Hey, stranger.

Yes, you. The one reading this right now. I don’t know who you are, but I do know something about you that’s true whether you can believe it or not:

You are important. You matter. You may have heard the opposite all your life, heard that you are worthless, weak, ugly, stupid, a waste of space, an embarrassment. That nothing you do is right and that you will never amount to anything. All of those things aren’t true. This is true: You are not a mistake. Do you believe that?

Whether you have faith in him or not, it was God who planned you. You are his pride, his masterpiece. He delights in who you are! Oh, if you can, even for one moment,  just see exactly how captivating you are in his eyes. You will never again believe that you are ordinary. Inside  you, there is something unique and precious that he placed, and only he can reveal, if you’d let him. He longs for you to let him. Will you?

It doesn’t matter that you messed up. It doesn’t matter that you failed, or that you’re shattered. If there’s anyone who can put you back together again, it’s him. He wants you whole. He wants you healed. He wants you hopeful. When was the last time you felt like that?

I know this isn’t always easy to believe. You might want to, but it just seems so out of sync with the reality of your life. I’ve been there. Even now, there are days when I find myself thinking there is no way anyone can look at me and find me beautiful.

But it isn’t true. There is beauty in us, in you and me both, and God wants to bring it out for all the world to see.

Only if we believe it. Only if we let him.

I hope you will.

Love,

Someone like you

Why wait?

Because I am deeply loved.

Because that love is more than enough.

Because that love assures me that nothing less than the best is being prepared for my future.

Not because I am broken hearted.

But because I have been made whole.

Not because I am afraid.

But because I am brave enough to love the man of my dreams now, and to honor him even while I do not know him yet.

Not because I do not believe in love.

But because I believe that love should be nothing less than true. And if it is, then it is worth waiting for.

So I will wait. I know he will come. Someone who, like me, will know that there is no other place to be but beside each other. Someone who will love me so much that he would never put me first before our God. Someone who will lead me. Someone who will wait for the right time to say I love you.

And when he does, I’ll tell him that I love him too. That I waited for him. That I believed he will come, and that I saved all my best for him. Because I know that the man I will love, wherever he is right now, deserves nothing less than my best.

I will be true to him, no matter who and where he may be.

I will let God mold me into the woman of his dreams.

I will keep my promise.

True love waits.

 

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STILL

Hide me now under Your wings. I am afraid, because of everything that is happening in my time, my generation, my world. My country is hurting, lives are being shattered and dreams are being broken. Cover me within Your mighty hands. You are my only shelter, I need the security that only You can give. Your people need a safe place to turn to, a place of healing, a place where hope can be found again.

When the oceans rise and thunders roar, when the mountains fall and the seas rush in, when we cannot trust our leaders and we cannot tell the truth from lies, I will soar with you above the storm. You are greater than our problems, You are greater than our pain. Father, You are King over the flood, You are still in control, You who promised to never leave us nor forsake us.

I will be still, know You’re my God.

I rest my soul in Christ alone – for He is the only one I can trust, the only one who never fails and never lets go. Know His power in quietness and trust. Even when I do not understand, even when my faith falters and doubt wins, the truth never changes that He is good all the time. I can put my future in His hands, there is no safer place to be.

I will be still, know You’re my God.

____________________________________________________________

* Lines in italics are property of Hillsong Australia.


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Not-so-secret Garden

It’s 11:52 am, and I am sitting here alone in a gazebo in the PSU botanical garden. I should be having lunch with my friends right now, talking and laughing in the canteen, surrounded by other students. But I needed this respite; I needed these precious moments of solitude.  And when faced with a choice between food for the body and food for the soul, the answer is always the same. I am perfectly content to be where I am right now.

It is beautiful here; everywhere I look I see the hand of the great Artist. Palawan is always spectacular in June, but this year everything seemed more amazing, different somehow. Or maybe the change is in me, maybe I have learned to see more clearly now. I don’t really know, and for this moment, it doesn’t seem to matter.

I look around me, and I am filled with a wonder, a joy I cannot possibly express in words. Bliss, perhaps, is closest to what I am feeling right now. There are flowers everywhere, in every color. The cool rains have woken them up from their sleep, and they have never seemed lovelier to me. Yellowbells, hibiscus, bougainvillas, zinnias, periwinkles, orchids, and a dozen others I cannot name. The fire trees, laden with blossoms, lift up their dazzling red flowers to the soft blue of the sky. Scattered on the ground beneath the branches are the fallen petals – still colorful, still striking. Even in death, there is beauty, there is poetry, they seem to say. However, it is the unobtrusive simplicity of the gardenias that capture my attention the most. A long row of bushes lining the pathway has burst into bloom, and the glossy, dark green leaves seem to offer the pure white flowers as a gift. Their captivating scent floats through the garden, giving the breeze a sweetness that makes me want to dream and dream and dream….

It is easy to fall asleep here, easy to rest. The garden grows on a low hill overlooking the sea, which glistens joyfully in the sun, as if like me, it is glad that it is June once again. The waves break gently on the shore, weaving a hypnotic melody that only those who listen closely can understand. Mesmerized by the music, I lift up my eyes to the mountains in the distance. Dark blue and enigmatic, they whisper secrets to the clouds while sunlight and shadow play on their shoulders. Surrounded by such loveliness, I cannot keep myself from I thinking: Can there be any other place more alive?

In a few minutes, I shall have to leave. Once again, I will be caught up in the world of classes, responsibilities, work, relationships. Not necessarily a bad world, but different from this serenity, and at times hurtful and confusing. But I know that these past few moments have strengthened me. There is healing in the garden, in solitude, in communion with my true Love. In the breeze I can almost hear Him whisper, See, I love you. Do you not know that? Here in the garden or there in the crowd, I am with you. Even when the flowers and the fragrances fade, I will be your peace. Always.

You see, that is what I really  needed. To hear Him. More than the solitude, more than the loveliness, I craved His voice. In the busyness, in the crazy rush of daily life, I sometimes forget to listen. So I come here to reconnect. And always – always – I find Him waiting.

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1:30pm in the Botanical Garden

Somebody behind me is playing the guitar. As I sit here on the steps leading to the sea, I can’t help but wonder about him. Who could he be? We are perfect strangers. His music is everything I know about him, and from this angle, I know that he can’t even see my face. Perhaps he isn’t even looking at me. On a day like this – a day of flowers, sea breezes and sunlight – why would he waste his time looking at a stranger? But he captures me. His melodies are beautiful and profound*, and he makes the moment perfect. How I wish I could stay here all day.

*One of his songs was “I Could Sing of Your Love Forever”.


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