Wednesday, October 31, 2012

hope differed

Proverbs 13:12 says,

“Hope differed makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.”

I read this a few weeks ago, and it’s been back and forth in my mind ever since. 

I think it sheds a lot of light onto the whole idea of the “American Dream.” Growing up in America was a privilege and blessing to say the least… but I have to admit, we don’t have all of the right ideas. 

As I read this verse, my immediate thought was… “That’s it- that’s the American dream. Hope differed.”

We grow up wishing and hoping for the newest toys, the fastest times, the highest grades… and what do we do when we succeed in those goals? We make more. Later we want the nicest car, acceptance into the best college, the best figure. We want the best jobs, good looking spouses, kind friends, nice homes, and remodeled kitchens. And, after all of that… we want the cutest dressed kids, nicest school’s for our kids… only for them to repeat what we’ve already done. We’ve created a monster. It’s differing our hope to the next goal. It’s withholding our satisfaction until we get (fill in the blank). 

As humans, we crave being filled. We crave the fullness of anything… happiness, bank accounts, love, joy, pleasure, healing, strength, or even different skills. These are not all bad things, in fact, a lot of these things are God given desires. Psalm 16:11 speaks directly of “fullness of joy” found in His presence. 

The problem comes in when it steals our satisfaction…when these pursuits become the center our thoughts, decisions, and actions. They become our idols. We aren’t satisfied until we achieve or receive. We differ our hope and joy until the "next" thing... the problem- there is always a next thing.

As Christians, we’ve got to pull ourselves out of this monster cycle, and show the world that hope is here. It is now. We have got to look, act, and hope differently. 

Hope is made complete in Christ. 

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” Romans 13:15

“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.  And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” Ephesians 1:17-23

“And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.” 1 Corinthians 15:17-19

“Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and He will deliver us. On Him we have set our hope that He will deliver us again.” 2 Corinthians 1:9-10

“Through Him (Jesus Christ) we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:2

“For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” Romans 8:24-25

Pretty sunrise from my balcony this week.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

hebrews & crafts

During our discipleship group this week, we made some fun Christmas crafts together. Let's just say that glitter is all over my living room.

I love these ladies more than they will ever know!

Renee Ann

Laika with her beautiful Christmas tree covered in yarn.

Paw with her Christmas tree covered in rice and glitter.

rice, glitter, ribbon, glue and noodles.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:1-2

"Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord." Hebrews12:12-14

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

south korea

Words cannot express how thankful I am for my recent trip to Korea. Sophie has been a huge blessing to me. The trip couldn't have been even a tiny bit better. Everything was perfect.

It was a wonderful culture experience, too. 

South Korea is a legitimate foreign country. Everything is in Korean... and it's awesome. In the Philippines, I think it's a little different. Since school is taught in English here, most people know at least a few words of English. There is definitely a "western flare." In South Korea, it's all Asian. 

I had an incredible time and I could never thank Sophie's family enough for their incredible hospitality and love.

Fun memories from Korea: 
  • The Yangs. They are my Korean family. And, I love them. 
  • Fall weather. It was the first time I've felt cold in a year. Now, that's a blessing. 
  • Beautiful plants, trees, and flowers. The trees were starting to change colors. It was glorious. 
  • Seeing a new country.
  • Being back in a first world country again. 
  • Not having to really worry about someone stealing my stuff.
  • Hanging out with her family. 
  • Genetically engineered fruit.. I ate a banana that was at least 10 inches long. 
  • Heated toilet seats and floors. 
  • Riding in the Yang's car with the windows down. 
  • Going to Oma's yoga class. 
  • Laughing at Apa's jokes. 
  • Eating duck. 
  • Eating at a table a foot off the ground and sitting on the floor. 
  • Public transportation that makes sense. 
  • Visiting 7 cities in 4 days. 
  • Shopping in the asian markets. 
  • Taking our shoes off at every single door. Including restaurants. 
  • Visiting Sophie's grandparent's house... that reminded me of Nandy's house. 
  • Sleeping on a pallet on the floor at her grandmother's house... just like we used to do at Nandy's house.
  • Being picked up from her parents and sister at the airport.
  • Driving on roads without huge bumps. 
  • Eating new things.
  • Getting off the bus one stop early... and hiking to the top of the mountain. 
  • Seeing the beach in Busan... and having an unexpected wave crash onto our legs while someone was taking a picture- come'on- no warning? Really?
  • Seeing a "self-checkout" at the grocery store for the first time in a year. 
  • Hustling through the airport in Manila looking for Sophie's boarding pass.
  • Not being able to understand anything... just going with the flow relying on Sophie and Hanna. 
  • Persimmons. They were in season, and so delicious.
  • Mountains that aren't used for hiking... but rather as burial grounds and cemeteries.
  • Running through the rain on the way to the airport... umbrellas breaking, jeans and sneakers soaked.
  • Beautiful mums in full bloom. 
  • Cleanliness. 

Funny story to go along with these boarding passes... main thing- we made the flight.

Beautiful Suncheon Bay.

Beautiful day and wonderful sunset.

Wonderful ladies. Couldn't be more blessed by them.

mums, pea coat, scarf, wearing big earrings, good company... just a few of my favorite things.

Wonderful day at the bay!

Eating duck... here was the entrance- leave your shoes at the door.


Feeding the fish.
Trying on the traditional Korean clothes.

Sporting traditional clothes.
Eating at their aunt and uncle's restaurant.
I had clam soup for the first time... and it was great.

The Yang Family. I love them.

Sophie and I enjoying a town festival.

Oma and Apa.

I love this girl.

All of the ladies.

Pretty traditional Korean buildings and a pretty sky.

Oldest Catholic Church in Korea.

The Yang's.

New dessert- Shaved ice, Black beans, and Rice cakes.

I am so blessed by them.

When we got to her grandparent's house, they were hanging out inside shelling pom's and eating persimmons.

I gave her grandmother a pearl necklace and asked if she would smile for a picture. This is her immediate reaction. Throw up the peace signs. I love it.

Persimmon tree in their grandparents back yard.


They are so cute.

We got to sleep on a pallet. It was awesome... and had a heated blanket under it.

When we left for Seoul, they all stayed outside to wave us off... just like my parents always do.

Beautiful fall colors.

Gangnam style. So incredibly nice. The underground subway there was like an upscale shopping mall.

Market time.

I saw this in the restroom... need to comb your hair? Just use this one.. it's sterile.

Asian streets.

Walking up the mountain after getting off at the wrong bus stop. Haha.

Who needs gas when you have electricity?

Seoul Tower.

People were making wishes left and right.


Coolest engineered chairs ever.

They were a great break during the day.

Pretty ceiling.

Love these ladies.

Asian markets.

Korean Starbucks.


Last few hours together.. running through the rain to the subway... soaking wet, and with a broken umbrella.

Did I mention that I killed 8 cockroaches within the first 5 minutes of being back home in Manila? Half of them were the size of my thumb.  I sprayed them all to death. 

"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 the paths of righteousness for His name's sake" Psalm 23:1-3