11/2/2016: My Date with God

Footnote (11/15/2016): I’ve second thoughts about posting this but this is a project and if I don’t I will lose momentum. This shows that we are all sinners and that we all need forgiveness. What matters is not how much you sin but whether you return to God and repent.

[delayed posting on facebook]

11/2/2016: My Date with God

12:05am – 12:44am
Opening: Father, I’ve sinned against You. I have sinned against you. Forgive me O God, for your mercy is very great. You gave me abilities; you gave me talents, you gave me gifts, you gave me wonders, you gave me friends, thank you Father. For you are good and everything about You is good. Jesus, today is going to be a very short session, forgive me God, because it’s so late. God, you the sins of my heart. Surely the heart is deceitful above all things. Surely [she] is right in saying that the heart is deceitful. God, I almost made today a holy day, it was so close. Why Lord, does it have to be an all-or-nothing day? Forgive me God, for I live to please You. I will try again when I wake up O God, for your mercies are new everyday. Your grace is new everyday. Thank you so much for what you have done for me. Thank you so much for what you have done in my life.

God, I ask that you forgive me and wipe away my sins. Just as you will wipe away every tear from people’s eyes, every sorrow, every depression, every bondage, every sufferings, every tribulations. God, forgive me. I repent. I will follow You and seek You. Surely the heart is deceitful.

God, I was thinking about playing a song, a melody, because it’s my tradition or maybe a habit, or maybe because a part of me still wants to worship You, but how can I play music when I just sinned against You? Surely sin not only keeps people away from You, it also limits the worship that people may give You.

[Speaking in tongues]

God, I thank You that I have the ability to speak in tongues. I thank You that you gave me the ability to support and to help people. That’s my specialty. Through helping others, my soul, myself becomes stronger. I become strong through service. Thank You God, and help me to serve You. With You, there is a never-ending amount of service. You are worthy of all the praise. You are worthy of all the honor; you are worthy of everything. Everything good. I can always pray. I can always fast. I can always seek You. I can always talk to You. I can always sing to You. I can always pray and intercede for others. Thank you God.

Father You know, there was time when, in my pride perhaps, I thought to myself in the military that I am the only one that seeks You; that I am the only one that follows and loves You. God, now I know that I’m not the only one that gives praise, that I’m not the only one that loves You. That, in fact, my church, many people, surpass me in devotion to You. Surely the heart is deceitful. Surely I am like an unpredictable wave, tossing and turning, an unpredictable ship.

God, help me to spend time with You. Help me to love You. Why do I wait for the last minute, past the last minute to worship You, to spend time with You. Why do I give you my lastfruits and not my firstfruits? Not all of it.

Jesus, you are holy God, and Your ways are holy. Your ways are righteous. Father, forgive me, and wipe away my stains. Wipe away my fears. Wipe away my sorrows, my depression, my sadness. Thank you God. Help us O Lord, for we need You. I lack the ability to actively evangelize and I think the reason is my unpredictability. God, help me to serve You and to love You. Help me to draw closer to You. My times are in Your hands. My days are written in your scroll. God, may this be a ritual, and may this ritual not disappear. Thank you Jesus. Free me from my addictions, from my sins and lead me in the way everlasting….

Why is it that man only seeks You when they have to? Surely You give them happiness; you give them joy, you give them provision, and they forget about You, they sin against You. No wonder perhaps I am stuck in where I am. You want to bless me, but when You do, I forget You. Forgive me O God. I recognize my sin. I recognize my downfall. Do not take my blessings away. Do not take my lamp away. Forgive me O God, and give me another chance. Please Jesus. Give me another chance. I am sorry.

… [not transcribed] Telling me that You are all I need.

Lord, I remember transcribing for my church and maybe that is how I’m transcribing my personal experiences with You. You are holy and you are righteous. There is no one besides You. Give me another chance O God, for I am trying, I am trying. I recognize my sin, I recognize my downfall. Help me to shift my body away from lust, away from wants, to needing You. Take away my pride O God. I have nothing to be prideful about, but rather, I have almost everything to be shameful about. Seeking You should be the normal condition, the normal state. I could seek You more; I could love You more, but I failed. But God, You are the One that I will always seek and help me to give more of You and less of me, help me to eventually do that, until it’s all for You and none of me or for me. Thank you Jesus. Thank you God. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

[continues but will end transcribing]

Help me to know You more Jesus; Help me to know You more O God. Your love is enduring / Like a ring of solid gold / like a vow that is tested / like a covenant of old.

Activity: Music video / Singing: Ever Be- Bethel

If I fall even though I seek You, how much more do other people who don’t seek You. Forgive us O God. Maybe not so much. I meant maybe other people may be more righteous than me. Because God, you gave me grace. That’s why, that’s how I can seek You. I sin more than those people who don’t seek You.

Thank you Jesus. Thank you God.

[May continue but without transcribing]

6/25/2013: A lesson from my Mistake

6/25/2013: A lesson from my Mistake

S: 12:04am
E: 12:55am

Time is very short. In fact, I’m already overtime. For the record, this discovery will be for myself so it won’t interfere with my truthful writing.

To many of the youth members from my church, today (I mean yesterday), is a good day. They had BBQ, we got to socialize, and we watched Despicable Me. But for me, it is a horrible day because I didn’t follow God completely and it hurts to see my Christian brothers and sisters so into the world.

The best way; the perfect way, is to follow God completely. Everything else sucks. The pleasures this world gives suck. Yet, throughout the night, not one of the youths played Christian music, the music of eternal life and eternal value. All the music they played is “feel good” music. Feel good to what? Feel good to our human natures. Why is that bad? Because it is tainted by sin from the beginning. And we must be completely without sin to be with God. I know we can always ask for forgiveness and, depending on our hearts, He will forgive, but what is wrong is that I didn’t do my best. I should not worry that I might be kicked out or become a “party spoiler.” When the youths were watching Despicable Me, I should have closed my eyes and prayed silently. The movie doesn’t have any value because it doesn’t glorify God. Sure it’s funny, but Satan uses humor to change us to be evil.

I’m not really depressed by what they are doing, but by my inaction of it. I wasn’t courageous enough. I wasn’t watching with spiritual eyes enough. I wasn’t close to God enough. I’m also upset at myself because I didn’t pray for the youths or for the world enough. Not as much as I could.

And I made mistakes. People may be less forgiving but I’m glad God is more forgiving. I learned today though the Spirit that nothing else in this world matters. I should change myself again. I mean not really change but become, really become the person God wants me to be. I took the first step, by sharing my weaknesses and trying to be myself but I think it’s time I take the next one. I need to follow the fruits of the Spirit.

These youths.. they only (or so it seems) want what God gives them; they only want the blessings yet they don’t want the work that comes. They are more enthralled by the world than in God. They are basing their industries in the wrong thing. True, sometimes actually many times my old nature surfaces up like Paul, but what matters is that I vehemently try to follow God because I know deep inside that He is the only Thing that is worth it. Claire is different. She tries to follow God and ask questions. Anna too, but I feel she is half-world and half-God. She loves God but she also loves the world (the pleasures of the world, not people in the world).

Let these youths or other people judge me. My true purpose is the follow God. If I make mistakes trying to follow God then that’s okay. I just don’t want to make mistakes while not following God.

Because of this, maybe being with people is not such a good thing. Maybe I do have a point in saying I want to be alone and just talk to God. I be with people and I get overwhelmed by their lack of spiritual growth and their worldliness. I like how Uncle Allan said in church last Sunday. He said even though ex-President Bush made tons of mistakes, as long as he said he’s a Christian and tries to follow God, that’s okay. But President Obama is not sure of his spirituality. Allan and me doesn’t know where he stands. Does he follow God? Is he a Christian?

So, I want to change myself again. I want to be more meek, to be more humble, to have more peace, to be more patient. If things seem to be in a rush, I will slow down and not act rashly. God is in control and what is for us is greater than what is against us. If I’m driving in the car with Danny and Shawna and there is just silence because there is nothing good to say than I will just remain silent. Saying something just to break the silence is bad. God is the judge and everything I try to do is in accordance with the Bible. I will still love them. I need to be more self-controlled.

Sometimes I remember praying that I can have a “hot-line” to God. I tend to perform better spiritually at night. During the night, I feel I can talk to God much easier. The connection is stronger. I wish every day I can talk to God like I talk to a walkie-talkie.

If people question me and ask “Steven, what are you doing?” or “Why are you behaving like this?” I will tell them that I “want to be the person God wants me to be.” If they ask “How do you know what God wants you to be?” I will answer “Through his Word and though his Spirit that he gave me.”

Sometimes I wish bad things can happen to my youth members not to destroy them, but to build them up. After all, bad things happened to me in the Army and it helped me to grow.

I know by writing this and behaving like this I may lose many friends from church. But, if they love God, I’ll see them in heaven and we can be friends again.

I think what is the main difference between members of my youth group and me is not I have more wisdom or I behave better (or the other way around) or any other thing but simply because I try to follow God [more]. And the amount of our effort determines [the speed of] our spiritual growth. Course I mess up, course I get angry, and make mistakes, but as long as I try to follow the Lord, my stock in the stock market will be in an upward trend. Volatility doesn’t matter.

I want to try to do more in evangelism. I want to try to answer at least one spiritual or personal issue question from Yahoo! Answers once a day. I used to do that before but I stopped. It doesn’t matter if I will get less “best answers” or my percentage will go down. What matters is that I try to please God. If I suck in trying then oh well, I’ll try harder. I will either finish the race or die trying. I think that is what every Christian is supposed to do. Then we will have eternal life.

祂為愛來到世上
祂為愛走上十架
祂的愛改寫歷史
祂的愛重生了我

2/1/2011: Defense against Judgments

2/1/2011: Defense against Judgments

S: 9:51am

E: 11:28am (came back from formation)

Right now, I feel I’m on a low ebb on my writing skills. But, I still have to write. I write the good, I also need to write the bad times. Starkingdoms, the only game I allow myself to play, has been taking a lot of my time, but, at least it’s a lot more social than other games I’ve been playing. The leadership skills and practice in forums can help me grow as a person. Actually, I have been quite busy, between college, praying, doing military stuff, personal maintenance, and Star Kingdoms, and I find it hard to find time to write.

I’m also kind of forgetful sometimes. I was half-done on my other discovery I started but my mind then went blank. For me to write well, I need to be honest and write about my feelings and intentions before I write my content. I need to write about myself first before I write what I was planning to write.

For the past few weeks, I decided to socially isolate myself (esp. Facebook) because I needed to grow in God and self more. I’m afraid of people judging but I happy to say I have at last found a solution.

One thing that I find it hard in this world is judging. In my life, everyday, people judge me all the time, either intentionally or unintentionally. For example, when a soldier says, “Steven, wake up. Stop being lazy,” he is inferring:

Major premise: People who close their eyes during work are lazy.

Minor Premise: Steven is closing his eyes during work hours.

Conclusion: Therefore, Steven is lazy.

But, that is not the case. I did not close my eyes because I wanted to slack off and be lazy. No, the reason why I closed my eyes is so I can have the energy to do a better job. I chose to close my eyes because I know my weaknesses and I am trying to counter them.

This is why Jesus said in Matthew 7:1, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” God is right about that command because since God knows everything, only He can be the judge.

Before, my response is would be to argue and defend myself but I found the more I argue and defend myself, the more judgments and accusations I receive. Then, I tried to “be like Jesus,” by trying to know when to speak and when to remain silent. That helped, but, I think I found the best solution.

The solution is to, Steven, listen up, the solution to being judged is to be humble, truthful, and let your yes be yes and your no be no (Matthew 5:37). The truth will come in the end and God will be the ultimate judge.

I will do my best not to judge others but to pray for them. I cannot change people; only God can change people. I will be nice, caring, loving to everyone and I will also listen to my spirit as to when to speak and when to remain silent. However, if people judge me, I need to be humble, say the truth, and leave it to that. I will not go on explaining and defending myself. I will just let my “yes” be “yes” and my “no” be “no.” God knows the truth and He knows everything. He will be my real Judge.

PS: I have been so worried about being judged that I did not only isolate myself from Facebook, but also from my parents. I haven’t replied any of my dad’s e-mails this year nor have I called my mom in Taiwan. I always tell myself that I am not ready, that I am too stressed out to talk, but, I need not be afraid. God will be the Judge.

喜樂泉源 (Fountain of Joy) by 讚美之泉 (Stream of Praise)

祢是我喜樂泉源 祢使我歡欣跳躍
祢使我自由飛翔 不再被罪惡綁
祢是我永生盼望 祢愛有無比力量
從今時直到永遠 祢應許不會改變
祢的寶血 有能力 能醫治一切的傷口
祢的復活 能改變 一切的咒詛成為祝福
我們要高舉祢聖名 祢配得所有最大的讚美
我們要用全心 和全意 來敬拜祢
我們要歡迎祢來臨 願祢來設立寶座在這裡
我們要張開口 不停讚美祢

Fountain of Joy

For the past few days, I feel restless and uneasy. I find that by dancing and singing songs like this really cheered me up and helped me to give my burden to God. Hmm, when I get back to the States, I might sing this song along with my dance moves :)

It is Jesus who sets me free. I am so happy.

12/6/2010: My desire

12/6/2010: My desire

There are many things I want to write about myself so far, but I don’t have time now. It sucks. The Bible is right in saying there is a time for everything. I didn’t feel like writing yesterday or the day before yesterday even though I have things to write. Partly, it’s because of my sin.

12/7/2010

S: 6:55am

E: 7:30am

These past days, I have been under tremendous attack, not by people, but by my flesh. I know that any human desires will eventually lead to death.

James 1:14 but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed.

15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

I cannot do what I want but only what God wants. But, for the past three or four days, it has been almost impossible. I cannot sin against God. I cannot get pictures of girls and masturbate because not only is it wrong, but these people have a soul and spirit too. And I don’t care if it’s just their face, I cannot sin against God because they have a soul and spirit. Praise God, although I did masturbate, I did not get any pictures. Whew, I did my best to fight that one. I don’t know, it seems I have my own bio-rhythm, or time for everything (Ecclesiastes 3:1). The past few days have been very hard spiritually for me. I would play computer games instead of worshipping God, and then feel so bad that I do my best to worship God only to turn back to games again. I try to pray, I try to do right, but my desire burns in me. Often, I would look around my room to see if there are anybody watching me, so I can download those evil pictures, but praise God, I can’t. When I wanted to sin, my battle buddies are here, when they are not, I thought: It’s a perfect opportunity now, my conscience prevented me. I tell myself that I just can’t sin against God deeply and that these girls have a soul and a spirit. Doing these things will cause incredible damage.

On Sunday, I tried to memorize the Book of Psalms again, but although it is the most psalms I have read for a long time, I still fell to my desires. It is so not easy to follow God, I need to memorize the book of Psalms to live a holier life.

Today may be another difficult day so I’m going to sleep soon to gain energy, but let me first wrap this up.

Recently, I have a huge desire to find a girlfriend. I want to find another Endora, another Rebecca, and another Pricilla. I need to find a girl who loves God, and I thought, maybe I should go to Asia Friend Finder and try my best. I will not be afraid because God gives me courage. I don’t care about shame, because God is my judge. I don’t care if I fail because though a righteous man falls seven times (Proverbs 24:16), the Lord picks him up each time.

And, while I was in the shower, I was thinking, I can make more of a difference in the streets than in a church. I don’t know if I want to go back to church anymore because what matters is I love God and I love people. Of course I love my church friends, but the Bible says I need to love God so much that it’s like hatred compared to God (Luke 14:26).

I feel so much opposition. I feel many people are, or will be against me, but I must be strong and follow God. People can rebuke me, of course they can, and should, if they have God’s interpretation on something that I lack.

If I’m a country, I feel I’m most like Russia in World War II. I feel I’m alone. Those German panzer tanks are killing me, but the more they come closer, the more I’m weak, the Russian Winter of hope comes in. And if I commit, I have the resources and manpower to beat back the enemy. And, I’m alone too, I have no close or immediate allies. But, I’m big because God made me big, so I can stand not on my own two feet, but on God. I have the resources and land (potential) to be solo with only God.

10/14/2010: My story as a teacher

10/14/2010: My story as a teacher

S: 8:13am

E: 8:33am

S: 9:35am

E: 11:08am

To start, writing this is difficult for me. I really wanted to do something else, like playing a little bit of computer games. I’m still struggling, but I am getting closer to freedom. This is a long, and I think happiest, chapter of my life. My spirit is telling me to worship God, to spend more time with Him, while my body is telling me to play games and enjoy myself. I may do both, knowing that I cannot worship both God and games. This discovery, or story, will be reedited and will have many add-ons as I remember my memories. Thus, it will take a while to get this published, or maybe I can just publish it and edit it if I have a newer version. In computers, this is called patching, in journal writing, maybe it’s called revising.

After my failure at nursing school at East LA college, I told my dad that I now wanted to be a teacher. I find that as I grow in God and experience new things, I learn and see more about myself. I grow more confident of my abilities, more aware of myself, and things I previously thought impossible is possible. Before, I thought being a social worker, although it is very appealing to me, as impossible. I can’t speak very well, I stutter, I’m not very conversational, I don’t have social skills, I don’t have friends, I don’t know enough of this world to help people or myself :(, etc. So, I crossed out “social worker” early in my life because I felt diffident about my abilities. Now, as I grow more in God and life, I grow more confident (Phil. 4:13), and decided that being a social worker would be more perfect for me. The more I know about myself and the more I trust in God, the closer I get to my dream job, my career bull’s-eye.

My dad believed it is always important to not only get the education for the career, but also to gain some practical experience, if only to look good when applying for a career-related job. Before I joined the nursing school, I volunteered at a local hospital, the San Gabriel Valley Medical Center. Then, I went to PCC and took the nursing assistant class so I can be certified as a CNA. As I wrote in my last story (my story as a nurse), I didn’t finish the class because I was too afraid. I didn’t have a solid enough relationship with God back then to carry me through life. Now, since I wanted to be a teacher, my parents encouraged me to find a teaching job so I can gain more experience and see if it really is a job for me.

This time, my mom helped me out. My mom noticed an education center just a block away from my house called “SINWA Education Institute.” Wow, my mom is a lot more aware of her surroundings than me. All this time I’ve been living here, I never knew an education center behind Papa John’s. We planned for a day to come in, impromptu and all, and the day came.

I remember my first feelings. I was afraid, nervous, and scared. I’m afraid that whoever the manager is would reject me outright. I’m glad I didn’t go in alone; what I feared might actually happen. One thing that comforted me and gave me courage is that my mom is going with me and I know she’s excellent with people. She calmed me down and told me to just trust in God. “God will take care of everything,” she said. I remember praying with her right before going in. Getting out of the car (my mom suggested walking, but I was too nervous to show myself to the world), ringing the doorbell, and getting inside the classroom is equivalent to the invasion of Normandy for me. The principal, Mrs. Wu, greeted us and my mom exchanged friendly greetings. I said “hello” and smiled. I can be very warm with people, but it takes time and at that time, I was afraid to show myself completely. I never been to an interview, the one at McDonalds doesn’t count because I had 100% confidence I could land the job, anyone can get into that job, right (that was how I thought back then)? Now, in this proper interview, I had no idea how to act, so I acted reserved but friendly. I think I remember being a little more relaxed after the prayer. I felt a new sense of confidence and assurance, but, I was still nervous.

My mom and Mrs. Wu connected almost immediately. They started talking about their lives, experiences, as well as my life and experiences. Then, they started talking in Taiwanese! I had no idea what they were saying. Are they talking bad about me, etc? I remember myself talking to Mrs. Wu, too, and telling her why I wanted this job. I forgot what I said though. I also met Mr. Wu, her husband and the assistant principal. From their first impressions, they were very nice and cordial to me. Mrs. Wu told me I should volunteer first to get some experience. I agreed immediately. I’m just so happy to get experience working with children! She told me she would have to conduct some background checks and other clearances before I can actually start my job as a tutor. I had to go through the same when working as a nurse, so I understood the concept. I think from her first impression, she saw me as a kind, although a bit nervous, trustworthy person. I am to start next Monday, so I have the rest of the week to prepare myself. When my mom and I walked out of the education center, I beamed a smile at her and told her thank you. I was so happy at the success and miracle. It was much better than my best expectations. God is such a wonderful, loving God, the God who gives me second chances.

The day as a tutor-intern came. I am to come at 2:45pm. As always, I was scared, shy, and nervous. What will the children think about me? How many will there be? Will I be able to get along and teach them effectively? I walked in the noisy classroom. Mrs. Wu was at the door and greeted me. I looked at the classroom and was surprised to see that there is no tutor. All the students were just doing their homework by themselves. Mrs. Wu’s office desk is at the south-west corner of the room, so there was some control at the noise. I see mostly elementary school level students. Some of them are doing their homework; others are talking with their classmates. When I first walked in, I was expecting an “all eyes on me” type entrance. However, I was relieved when only a few looked up at me. After a brief discourse, Mrs. Wu then announced to the class that I would be their new tutor. “Okay everybody [clap] [clap], here is your new tutor, Steven, and he will help you on your homework. If you have any questions, raise your hand and Steven will come and help you. Steven, would you like to introduce yourself to the class?” I was taken aback at her sudden introduction and wasn’t prepared to be discovered yet. While slowly walking to the front of the class, I smiled, waved my hands at everybody and said, “hello everyone. I’m Steven Yeh and I will be your new tutor. I am 19 years old and I finished high school.” Seriously, I didn’t know what to say and I stuttered a bit at first. I’m not used to having people, even children, stare at me. I became very shy, but nice and polite to everybody. I also, for the first few months, never stopped smiling. After a while, the kids told me why am I always smiling? A girl told me I was scaring her. I told them I am just very happy to be with you guys and help. Being with children always seems to make me very happy. There is something about the innocence and naturalness of children that I’m allured to. Maybe I have it too. I think if the whole world were like them (the good side), the world would be a much better place. The kids convinced me to stop smiling so much because I was scaring them, so I tried to look normal. However, throughout my job as a tutor, I would frequently go to a private place and just smile broadly because I can’t help it! I just feel so happy to be with children and to help them. I am just so happy to be with God’s people, my reference to children (Matt. 18:3, 19:14, 18:10).

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14

In the beginning, I just stood watching kids do their homework and waiting for a hand to come up. Then, I would ask the students who were talking to do their homework. They looked at me with fearful eyes and obeyed. Initially, they would be fearful of me, naturally, because I am a stranger to them, but after a week, the children start to warm up to me. They became less afraid. A few took a month, and I remember a girl, in third-grade, who never really trusted me. S (first initial of her name, to protect privacy) would always be silent to her peers and to me, quietly do her homework, and ignore everything else. Even if she made mistakes on her paper, or doesn’t know how to do something, she wouldn’t ask for help. She would just sit there, head down, looking at her paper. I have to make my rounds and observe that she needs help. And, when I explained the concept to her, she wouldn’t ask any questions! She would look at me with her fearful eyes, make a slight nod and get back to her work. I checked her work afterwards and many times, she actually understood what I was telling her. After a while, I wouldn’t go so near her if I wasn’t checking her work because she tenses up every time I was close. Personally, I believe she might be a victim of child abuse. I saw her dad (her parents divorced) and he looked scary, with a full beard, grey-white hair, wrinkled skin, and other complexion. It seems strange, but at that time, I didn’t take any action. I was afraid and what if I was wrong? Every time I talk to S, as with most of my students, I would kneel down to her eye-level, and talk gently and softly to her. She’s afraid of people, so I need to gain her trust first, but, I never did. I remember praying for her and asking Jesus to heal her. I don’t remember if I ever talk to her about Jesus or not. There was a few times when she actually talked to me and asked questions, but that was rare. And, lastly, I never remembered her laughing or even smiling.

After a few days of volunteering as a tutor, my boss, Mrs. Wu, told me I am spending too much time with the wrong students. She took a blank sheet of paper and wrote a list of children’s names starting with those that need the most help. She told me if I were to become a teacher, I need to have a plan. I need to identify who needs help and who doesn’t. She wrote about sixteen names and I used it as a guide. Later on, I used the list as a prayer list and added new names when new students come. My original plan was to use the list to pray for my students every day, but after awhile, I never sticked to the plan. I would start to pray for them and then I became lazy and stopped. I only prayed for my students from time to time, not daily, and it was a mistake I made. Had I prayed for my students daily, many of them would have gone closer to God.

Mrs. Wu told me that once I start teaching summer school (I started volunteering in May), I will get paid. To be honest, I was going to tell her that it’s fine, that I’ll do it for free. Teaching and helping children is so fun that I’m willing to do it for free. In fact, I may even consider paying to do this. I finally found a job where I’m not working, but playing.

I thought at first that teaching the kids would be one-way: they raise their hands, and I give them the knowledge. What I discovered later on was that the kids are teaching me too. In fact, it seems every day when I go to teach, they are teaching me more than what I’m teaching them. I may teach them math, English, science, etc, but they are teaching me life skills: how to get along with people, the experience of being and talking to people. Plus, when teaching them, I also learn some of these basic subjects, too. I remember opening up a student’s algebra book and reading the content and “reviewing” myself before actually teaching him. I just look at the examples and quickly remembered what to do. I don’t want to look dumb in front of my students, so I would just quickly go over the lesson and teach. If I still don’t know, I would tell the truth to him but tell him that I would get back to him on this tomorrow. Sometimes however, the truth is too hard because it makes me look like a dumbass so I would be mean to cover myself. It’s sad, and looking back, I should have just told the truth 100% of the time. I would also take pictures of the algebra book (I still have them!), page-by-page, and then look through it once I get home. That way, for his next math lesson, I would know what to do.

Back in that lonely time of my life, I had no friends. No friends in college (PCC), no friends in church (I mean no close friends), just, no close friends in my life. So, when I began working, and throughout my short career, they became my friends. I would joke with them, make them laugh, talk about my life when I was a child, etc, and they would tell me their stories, and their “secrets.” One girl, C, in first-grade, would always raise her hand just so she can talk to me. For the longest time, I though she really needed help, but then Mrs. Wu told me, “Can’t you see, she’s using you. She knows how to do her homework. You help someone else,” and she came up to C and scolded her about wasting my precious time. In truth, although she may pretend to not know how to do something (she seems she really doesn’t know), I still enjoyed teaching and talking to her. Often, she would gesture with her hands for me to come forward and then, making a cup with her hands and holding it to her mouth, she would whisper in my ear a “secret.” I would listen attentively and tell her I won’t tell anyone. I never did, and, now, I forgot all of her “secrets.”

As I continue teaching and tutoring, I began to grow afraid because I am becoming like them. I’m not sure if other elementary or middle-school teachers have this problem, but I feel myself reverting to a child again. If I were to go back in time, to fifth-grade, but with the same brain, I would more likely than not act like I was in fifth grade. If I took the pill Detective Conan took, I may actually act like a child. It would be hard for me to go against the flow and resist.

I feel, looking back, that me being with children and teaching them is a wonderful gift from God. My childhood has been altered and messed with due to my ADHD Ritalin pill. I don’t remember most of my childhood life. Now, at 19 and working at a tutoring center, I feel God is healing my childhood by giving me experiences with children that I never had. Their memories and experiences became part of my memories and experiences. For that, I am very grateful for the wonderful gift God has given me. It reminds me that He is faithful and does all things well.

————————————–

11/18/2010

S: 1:27am

E:

You know, from now on, I’m going to share my stories not chronologically, but individually, through each student. Every one of my students has a story to share.

Right now, I am on guard duty with Sgt. Rivera. Normally, I would feel tired, but I feel the Lord giving me some additional strength lately. Praise the Lord. Sgt. Rivera is currently taking child psychology and writing her final essay. Curiously, I decided to skim through her textbook. The book is filled with theories and viewpoints. Inside me, I already know a lot about children because the Bible teaches me about people. I feel the best theory, no, the truth, comes from the knowledge of God through His Word. With my Bible, I understand almost everything. I skimmed and saw one topic that interested me: “Morality, Altruism, and Aggression.” I looked through the chapter and especially Kohlberg’s theory of moral development. In it, I found that conscience comes from God, and those who learn God’s ways tend to be in the later stages. I immediately remembered my method of teaching children about morality during my tutoring years. It was then when I wanted to tell my story as a teacher through the stories each of my students gave me.

When I discipline my students (I call them my “children”) or teaching them right from wrong, I tried to invoke their God-given conscience. I believe that every child, deep inside, knows right from wrong. I have a seventh-grader at that time, named Brian, who always gets into trouble by hurting people. He’s very smart; he’s taking algebra at that time; but he also does evil things. He would cuss, make fun of, and insult at fellow students, especially students younger than him. He would throw stuff at them, or do evil pranks that make other students cry. For a time, I asked Mrs. Wu to remove him because he’s being such a troublemaker, however, probably due to money and her mother being involved in transporting students to our center, my boss resisted. This is sad. Every time he gets in trouble, which is, in my memory, everyday, I would always try to appeal to his conscience. I remember despite his evil, I am always still loving, kind, forgiving, but also just to him.

Every time he does evil, I always ask, “Brain, why are you doing this?”

“Because it’s fun,” Brain would reply.

“I know its fun. It’s fun for you, but it’s not fun for them” I said.

Sometimes, then, he would say that I’m wrong; that the other party also has fun when he’s doing things to them. To that, I ask questions. I want him to see that the other side is not having fun.

“How is he having fun?” I asked. “Look, he’s crying” or “See, he’s sad. He doesn’t want you to bother him.”

That usually is enough to stop his self-justification. Then, I would continue.

“Brain, you know hurting others is wrong. You need to do the right thing.”

And then he could complain, even try to dispute that he’s wrong, but I feel deep inside, he knows what’s right and wrong.

I try to teach my children stage 6 of Kohlberg’s theory of moral development. I dislike punishing them like giving them time-outs, being mean to them, withholding love, etc, because these methods don’t teach them the real reason to do good. They should do good because it is the right thing to do. And, I call them my “children” because God has entrusted me these kids for a period of time. They are my children from 2:30 to 5pm.

There’s a cartoon from my SOG’s (sergeant of the guard) textbook that I want to share with you:

Principle: [Sitting and angrily pointing his finger at kid] Ira, you will be punished if I ever catch you cheating again!

Kid: Yes, sir.

[Next scene]

Kid: [to teacher] Mr. Grimmis wants me to cheat more carefully.

Ha! Lol. I think it’s funny, but I think it also teaches an important lesson. If we don’t invoke their conscience, the real reason why to do the right thing, these kids will never learn it. They will learn not to do wrong things not because it’s wrong, but so they won’t get into trouble. Martin Luther King Jr. said in a sermon that our society is changing from a conscience-based society to a punish-based one:

“Midnight is the hour when men desperately seek to obey the eleventh commandment, ‘Thou shalt not get caught.’ According to the ethic of midnight the cardinal sin is to be caught and the cardinal virtue is to get by. It is all right to lie, but one must lie with real finesse. It is all right to steal, if one is so dignified that, if caught, the charge becomes embezzlement, not robbery. It is permissible even to hate, if one so dresses his hating in the garments of love that hating appears to be loving. The Darwinian concept of the survival of the fittest has been substituted by a philosophy of the survival of the slickest. This mentality has brought a tragic breakdown of moral standards, and the midnight of moral degeneration deepens.”

If we don’t teach kids right and wrong, the real reason why to do good and the real reason why not to do evil, then kids will eventually adopt the survival of the “slickest.” They can do evil as long as they don’t’ get caught.

For Brian, I wanted to change him to become a better person. Working hours is not enough time so I played tennis with him and gave him my number so he can call me in case he needs help on his homework. I want to be an example of love and kindness. I want to be a role-model to him.

I got some stories to tell. There are times when I talked to him on the phone for more than an hour helping him on his essay. I joked with him and talked nicely to him. I want to be a friend as well as his mentor. I remember going to my computer, helping him find information, going to my family’s encyclopedia collection, to alternating in the kitchen talking to him. After the conversation, my dad would often ask who called me. I told him I was helping one of my students. My dad, however, would rebuke me for wasting my time on others. I disagree, however. I want to spend my time to help others because it’s the right thing to do. My purpose in life is to help people.

And then there are the tennis games. Sometimes we would play at Washington School, other times at Garvy Park (by Hellman Ave.). Although I played better than him, I still suck too. I remember seeing his disappointment when I kept hitting the net when serving or taking my first or second shot. I remember waiting for a long time, with my bicycle and tennis racket waiting for him to show up. Once, he never did, but that didn’t stop me from trying to connect with him.

Brian’s mom, as I said before, helped to transport some of my students to the center. I told her many times about her son’s bad behavior but, in the end, she told me she tried to do everything to help him but failed. She asked me to help her by helping him. I realized their family is divorced. Brian doesn’t have a father and I was told that might be a cause of his aggression. Well, then, I will be a male role-model for him. Slowly, towards the end of my tutoring tenure, I sensed Brian is becoming a better person.

Unfortunately, I joined the Army before I can fully change him. The last, or second to last day in LA, I invited Brian to play tennis. He brought some of his friends along. It was there when I told him I’m joining the Army and I said good-bye. I tried to contact him once during my Christmas leave, but he didn’t answer. I hope he becomes a better person and I hope he becomes closer to God.

Work in progress….

9/24/2010: The girl I love FINAL part

9/24/2010: The girl I love FINAL part

S: 10:07am

E: 11:43am

Yesterday, I had guard duty! I just came back from it today and tried to sleep, but, couldn’t without at least writing something about it. If I sleep, I may forget what I want to write or I may lack the desire to write it. I wrote an outline before I started writing this so I won’t forget.

The day before I had guard, I finally managed to have the guts to go back on Facebook. My close friend convinced me, in my words, to not be afraid and let God be the judge. I find that I’m so afraid of being judged. When I went on, the first thing I saw was a wall post by Auntie Linda telling me that the interview is on the air on Youtube. I immediately grew afraid because I’m afraid of being judged. In the interview, I told Auntie Linda and my mom that one of the best opportunities to share the gospel and teach the soldiers about the Bible is in guard duty. How ironic that tomorrow is my guard duty! I start to grow nervous. What if it’s the same as last time, which I was unprepared for the job but still won an inner victory. I cannot mess up this time so on the day of my guard, I went to the PX and brought lots and lots of snacks and I took an iron pill I brought from Taiwan. The reason why I’m so tired is because of my borderline iron deficiency (result from a blood test at PCC before I joined the Army). This is my chance to awaken people again! Heh. In the end, the chips gave me something to do while the iron kept me awake. I was still tired, I still slept during our resting periods, but I felt more energetic and have as much energy as my peers. My SOG told me I should start taking iron pills. I told them, besides the difficulty of finding one here, there are side effects. The main side effect is constipation. When I took one in Taiwan, I didn’t poop for a whole day. This time however, I had no problem. Hmm, strange. Praise God. Thanks to the hemoglobin, the guard shift today was relatively easier and it also went by quick, probably due to our conversations. By the time I know it, it was already afternoon. I was happy because time is going fast.

One of the main things we talked about is the girl I love. My SOG told me when we get back, he will help me find a girlfriend. I told him I already have a girlfriend. They told me that a girlfriend is by mutual consent. Both love each other. They were disgusted that I was referring her as my girlfriend. In the end, I agreed that she is not my girlfriend, but the girl I love. They asked me (my SOG knew a little about this situation because he punished me when I was late for work trying to ship a gold necklace to her) when was the last time she talked to me. I said, “um, like last January,” which is nine months ago! Between the blockings, the long ago contact, they are saying I am depriving myself of happiness and I should just drop her and find someone else. It’s not that easy. I tried to explain my promise to God of seven years, the little miracles I think God did to remind me of my promise. Still, I find myself losing on the logical front. What if God was trying to tell me to find another girl, a girl who loves God? How will I know? I can only know by prayer. I was giggling (sometimes in embrassment) and smiling the whole time I was telling the story. They could feel my emotions, but were serious about this. They asked am I still trying to contact her. I said no, the last time was in March (I realized now that I lied. The real time was closer to May?), only three months later. My NCO was worried about me. He doesn’t want me to be a stalker, to be a serial killer. No, how can I do that? It is totally against the Bible. I know she has free will (Genesis 24:5-8). She can choose whatever she wants. I told them if she has a boyfriend or is married (they asked that) I will then be free from my oath. Looking back, I felt what I said in the last sentence was wrong. My promise to God was to pray for seven years for her and if nothing happens then I would just be single and live for God. But, they wanted me to have a girlfriend, and as my last note said, I do really need one. I do need a companion who can go with me through green pastures and the valley of the shadow of death. I tried to convince them that God can find a way. All things are possible with God (Mark 10:27). But, they told me again that she has free will. Defeated, I admitted that they are right. I was being illogical. I told them I am going to do what I was going to do on my notes, that is to ask someone close to her if she has any affection for me. If not, then I will find another girl. They suggested Christian dating sites and I told them I can easily get a girlfriend. They also told me that I should have some experience first and just socialize one on one with a girl, any girl. That, to me, is wrong. Dating is preparation for marriage (thanks Ben Ku!) I can’t just be emotionally connected with a girl I’m not going to marry. Yes, I would get experience, but I would also satisfy my flesh, and I know that the flesh is hostile to God (Romans 8:6-8). If I satisfy my flesh, my flesh would want more. I learned this the hard way. So, that is what I will do. Maybe. I would see if she’s still thinking about me. That’s all. If not, then I’ll find somebody else.

Or, and this has come to my mind recently. How about the story of Watchman Nee and the girl he loved?

In his writings, Nee had trouble growing closer to God. He wanted the Holy Spirit, but God won’t give it to him. Through prayer, he found that Charity, his childhood sweetheart, still occupied a large place in his heart. And for a time, he just can’t surrender that room to God. Finally, when he did surrender this room to God, God poured out His spirit to him and he felt free! He felt like so light and so happy! He felt unimaginable happiness.

“By January of 1922 there was already a small gathering of the Lord’s people at ‘Tze Yuan’ [‘Tze Garden’]. I remembered one day that I was going to have to preach that very day. So I opened my Bible, trying to find a suitable subject. I happened to read Psalm 73, verse 25, which states: ‘Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides thee.’ Upon reading it, I confessed that I could not say these words as the psalmist had said. At the time I knew that there was something hindering the relationship between me and God. For over ten years I had had deep affections for Charity.∗ She was not saved at that time. I tried to preach the gospel to her, but she always laughed at me. We truly loved each other. I let her laugh at the Lord Jesus whom I preached. In my heart she always occupied a very large place. I had frequently asked myself if I should continue to let her occupy such a place in my heart. We all know that when a young man is in love, it is most difficult for him to lay it aside. Although with my lips I said to God that I was willing to lay her aside, in my heart I was unwilling to do so. I now read that verse in the Psalms again. I could honestly confess that I could not lay her aside. During that entire week I could not say, ‘Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides thee’ The Spirit of God had put His finger on this very issue as the hindrance to my being filled with the Holy Spirit. On that particular day I still went to preach, though I did not know what I was preaching about.

“Later on, I began to reason with God. I asked Him to give me power first, and then I would lay her aside. But God never reasons with men. In my youthfulness I promised God many things: I would go to Tibet to preach the gospel; I promised Him I would do this and that; but God would not listen. His finger persistently pointed at this girl friend as my obstacle. No matter how I prayed, I could not get through. My heart was really heavy. I even begged God to change His heart. But no, He insisted on my dealing with this matter. It was as though there was a piercing of my heart with a sharp sword. God wanted me to learn a deeper lesson; otherwise I would be of no use in His hand.

“On yet another day I preached in the morning. In the afternoon I was in my room under great heaviness of heart. I told God that since I would be going back to school the next Monday I wanted Him to fill me with the love of Christ. I was now ready to lay aside my lover. The love of Christ had so constrained me that I was determined to put her aside. With this decision made I could say from my heart the words of Psalm 73.25. My inside was filled with unspeakable joy. Even though I had not ascended to the third heaven, I could say I had been to the second heaven, so happy and full of joy was I. The world now became insignificant to me. I felt as though I were floating on a cloud. On the night when I was saved, the burden of my sins had been rolled away. On this day (13 February 1922), all obstacles in my heart had been removed. Not long afterwards many people were saved” (Watchman Nee in A Short Biography of Watchman Nee)

My peers told me that I’m still very preoccupied with her. I tried to deny it, but they persisted. I admitted that, yes, I did think about her often, probably as often as every day. My peers want me to be happy. They want me to find my soulmate. But, I told them, later on, that it depends what people value. If my value is happiness, about being happy, then by all means, I would try to find a girlfriend, but, my value isn’t happiness. What people value and what I value are different. Most people value money, happiness, and fame, but I value eternal life, righteousness, and love. It’s okay if I’m unhappy. My true, eternal happiness rests with God. I don’t really get offended if people steal or take things away from me because my value is not on money. In fact, sometimes I kind of want to give these things to them, to help them and hopefully, to teach them how much God loves them. It’s not my money, but God’s. If they steal from me, God will be the judge.

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.  If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.  Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.  On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

-Romans 12:16 – Romans 12:21 (NIV)

People think I’m a pushover because of it, but no, I am simply waiting on the Lord. I try to be loving to everybody because the Bible tells me to and because I know, deep inside, it’s the right thing to do.

I feel I am now in Watchman Nee’s position. This girl I love is occupying a big place in my heart. Will I cast it down and give the room back to God? I feel it’s difficult; I feel it’s impossible, but it is for God’s glory. And, I don’t really need a companion. As long as the shepherd of my soul is with me, I will be alright. He is in full control.

Wow, the iron pill is working! It is now 11:20am and I’m still awake! Usually, I’m fast asleep by 0900.

I also played two games of “LIFE” on my peer’s computer. I watched her play for a little while and I grew interested. This game, originally a board game, is played against other players. Like monopoly, you move your piece around the board to reach the end. Unlike monopoly, you can’t buy anything. The object of the game is to get as much money as possible by getting as much “LIFE” points, high career, etc. I dislike how, in the end, your life points (experiences) is converted into money. To me, life experience is priceless, it’s wrong to put a dollar sign to it. I played the first round being me (I chose teacher, house initially so I can provide a wonderful home for the girl I love (I know, sorry) and later, a mobile home [so I can go around telling others about Jesus!], the risky life (since I want don’t want to be part of the timid souls who “know neither victory nor defeat” [Theodore Roosevelt]), etc. Needless to say, I lost (got last place too), but I had fun. The second round, I tried to win, and praise God, I got good luck. I did win. I first did the investment, then paid my debt, and played cleverly.

At the very end of our guard duty, something horrible happened that tried to mimic my last guard shift. I lost the equipment keys! I didn’t know what to do and I couldn’t find it. But, after I gave up hope and went to the PX to buy new locks, my sergeant called and told me it’s found! Whew, praise God!

Throughout the guard shift and my life after coming back from Taiwan, I tried to not be afraid, but to be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9).

I also shared my career goals to my sergeant, which is about my desire to do part-time ministry and to be a special education teacher. He told me he can’t see me as a special ed teacher. Really? Oh well, I will still do my best.

Lastly, I talked to him about my college fears. I told him the reason why I suspended my college is not only because of my gaming addiction, although it played a critical role, but also because I was just afraid of doing my best work or not, and seeing my grades as a result. For me, I have to do my best work. I cannot just write an essay in one day in six-hours. I need to spend six one-hour days working on my essay. If I do not show my best effort in my work, I’m just afraid to submit it. After much talking, my sergeant told me the reason why is because I’m afraid of people judging me. I’m surprised at his insight. I am afraid of being judged. I’m afraid to go on Facebook often because I’m afraid of being judged. I can’t submit my sub-standard work (even if it will be late) because of being judged. Many things I thought about doing were eliminated because of my fear of being judged. I need to cast down my fears and let God be my judge.

12/28/09: About Baptism

12/28/09: About Baptism

 

Another thing that concerns me is baptism. I would feel more comfortable if it was just Jesus, Pastor John, and me there. As private as possible because if it’s open, I’m afraid people would not attend it. I’m afraid people would judge me because so few of them would attend my baptism. That might reinforce the fact that I’m not popular, or socially adept. It might bring the “who cares about Steven” mentality.

No, the truth is, I feel hurt when I’m not treated equally as others. Only this time, it’s my fault since I was really introverted and closed to my church before I joined the Army. I don’t want to know the truth because the truth hurts. I already know I’m unpopular. I already know that nobody cares about me equally. It’s painful enough. I don’t want to see the consequences of it. There are times when I just want to give trying to be with people and kill myself since without others I cannot survive. I tried going alone in the Army and it nearly drove me crazy. I was on the verge of death until I decided to take the guts to reconnect with God’s family. I might as well know the truth before I die, but I was wrong. I received many e-mails from my church asking how I was doing. Then, when I made a facebook account, I was surprised at the results. I am a lot closer to reality now, and I know the truth. People treat me differently at church because I am still an outsider. And I probably always will be. It’s painful; another thorn I have to endure.

But then, there are many times I tell myself: who cares? The only person I need is Jesus. With God, all things are possible. I can go through life alone with Jesus. I tried it. I can’t. I still sin against God. I needed Christians to help me spiritually against the forces of darkness (esp. flesh).

This is why I’m thinking, forget it. I don’t need to be baptized here. There are too many social repercussions for me. It’s too painful. And even if the people treated me equally, I might not be able to stand it, since I wasn’t used to it. But then, life is all about stepping outside the comfort zone and trusting in God. I tell myself frequently that many times, I can’t do it, but I will do it anyways because I trust in God and God will take care of me. And yes, God did take care of me even though sometimes it was in the end.

Then, another issue is, am I ready to be baptized? God helped me so much in the Army, I cannot deny it. I can write stories after stories about what the Lord had done for me. But, I still sin against God. Many times, I still choose to follow the desires of my flesh instead of God. I would be in conflict and agony until I give up to my flesh. Then, I would be in agony again because of it. I continue to follow God, I continue to seek Him, because I need Him, and He created me. My spirit says yes, but my flesh says no.

Lastly, I”m still thinking whether to make facebook a picture of my Dorian Gray, but it could be too embarrassing for me.

12/19/09

12/19/09

S: 0505
E: 0508

Wow, praise God. I can finally go home. I’m so happy. Remember Steven, that you need to ovey God and serve Him. I have a lot of plans once I get back home. I need to do them because God’s work comes first. Help me God, not to be afraid. To be strong. Honestly, I’m scared about talking to my church, but I need to because they are in my family.

The most important and only thing I will do will be to worship God. I will not, will not play games. I can’t waste my time on this world again.

Protect me Lord, guide me.

Ok 11 Nov 09

Ok 11 Nov 09

Ok, I have so many things to write about my life. Where should I start? Should I even start? Lol. I just called my mom in Taiwan about my heart of hearts and I’m glad I’m able to convey all my feelings and thoughts to her despite my fluent but limited Chinese. For one thing, it’s so hard to be perfect, to love and worship God, alone. I need a spiritual “battle buddy.” Sure, the Army provides me physically (food, water, shelter, etc) and my battle buddies in my barracks provide me physically but not emotionally, mentally, or spiritually. My dad also provides me physically, but that’s something I want to talk, I mean write, about later. I can’t be perfect with God alone. It’s too difficult. The Bible even says there is “none righteous, no, not one.” I need someone I can freely talk to, someone I can call, in case I get tempted, in case I get attacked by Satan. You can pretty much tell that I’m having trouble with God if I don’t update my facebook lol.

I don’t even know if I want to come back to Los Angeles during Christmas time anymore. I have nothing to look forward to over there. I don’t want to see my dad, and he has been calling me almost everyday. Of course I love my dad, but I hate the fact that he micromanages me to death. When I was 20, which is before I joined the Army, my dad has control over everything. I can’t drive my car, bike, go anywhere, or buy anything without consent from my dad. He even tries to control how much toilet paper I use. Many times, I would just lie and say I’m going to “study” just so I can get out. That, and other reasons why I am so deprived of the things of this world. I was afraid to even go shopping at age 20. I feel uncomfortable going by myself. I’m afraid to look up the yellow pages to call for services. The only thing I feel comfortable doing is staying in my room and playing third-world computer games. You know, free cheap games. I lack street smarts and so many of my skills are deprived and undeveloped. My dad provides me physically, but not emotionally, mentally, or spiritually. Although he’s my dad, I look to him like my boss. It’s cold, unemotional, calculating. I can’t live like this. And of course, he’s the one who kicked me out the house and forced me to join the Army. That itself should be reason enough to ignore him. Now I know why my mom divorced lol.

The second thing is about my so called “friends” in church. I want to reconnect with them but they don’t want to talk to me. I send messages via facebook but they don’t respond. It’s like ever since I joined the Army, they don’t talk to me anymore. All they care about, I think, is about their college friends. Ooooo I’m in UCLA, ooooo I’m in UC Riverside, ooooo I’m in USC. Fuck you and your punk ass college. I’m pretty sure I’m more important than them since I’m going to spend eternity with you in heaven. But the thing I need most is a girlfriend. I want a girl who loves God and loves people. I want a girl whom we can pray everyday and sing everyday and worship God everyday. I can tell her all of my troubles and stresses. Then, then life will be bearable for me. Then, everyday will be like heaven lol. But, sigh, I’m just not good enough. To be truthful, I’m in love with a girl on Facebook. No, please don’t guess who, and if you do, I’m just going to lie. But of course, she’s in college. She’s 10x smarter than me, she has probably 10x more friends. Actually, make that 20 or 30x or more since I hardly have any lol. So fuck it, I won’t be able to find anyone. The Bible says a “virtuous wife, who can find?” Only Jesus can find one for me. Sigh, so depressing. This leads to another point.

Many times, actually almost all the time, I feel that the only friend I have is Jesus. Of course it’s wonderful to have Jesus, but I want a fully human friend. Someone I can talk to about anything, a “spiritual battle buddy.” I can’t fight against my flesh, the world, or Satan alone. I still try, but now, I do so more tactically.

You might see me on Facebook and see how emotional and open I am, but I am totally different in real life. I can’t trust people, and it’s painful. I act like a general lol. I’m cold, tactful, calculating, unemotional, meaner, and results-(or mission) oriented. This “don’t mess with me” type. And I’m also able to back myself up with threats. It’s fine. I would so much rather go to heaven now than later. Or if I don’t go to heaven, oh well. God’s the judge. This world is hell to me already.

I need to go to sleep soon, or tomorrow will be hell. To make this short, I’m coming back on my own terms. I already reserved a rental car, and got my planned ilternary. I will be living in a hotel from 25 Dec to 4 Jan. I will still, of course, stop by my dad’s house and show up to church. Maybe I should wear my ACU’s and make a noisy entrance. I was even joking about being in full battle rattle with my M16A2. Hooah! I will eat at Vietnamese restaurants, eating those yummy deserts. But, I will spend almost everyday hiking at the mountains. I love to sing and hike and be with nature. I want to go on higher ground. I may also revisit my past: Taking walks down my middle school (Thomas Jefferson), skating at Washington School (elementary school), go ice skating at the Pasadena rink, maybe go to Cloverly School and take a look, revisit SINWA education center, although most of my students are probably gone, and go to the beach. I can finally be free; I can finally have freedom. What I don’t want to do is playing computer games in my hotel room. Yes, I’m back to playing games again, but it’s high-class games now.

One of the things my dad kept telling me is to save money. Of course I’m saving money, I’m trying to save every penny I get. I would deprive myself of sport drinks or monsters and just drink water or MRE drink mixes. I always eat at the DFAC, and I go outside to eat only when forced. Like that platoon Hooters event. Ugh! My battle buddies know me; they know I love Jesus and all, so I can’t opt out. My only expenses are for charities, necessities (like blankets, toothpaste, and yes, internet), and a little on computer games. I’m currently sponsoring a child and a family from World Vision. I love helping people. I want to use my treasures on earth for something more permanent. I’m afraid though. When I want to help people, I always get the feeling that people just don’t trust me, no matter what my intent is. I feel like I’m releasing this aura of fear on people. Sigh. It seems like the only things people want from me is my money. Then money it is! I’m also letting my fellow soldiers borrow. A lot of them are getting broke due to poor financial management. Damn! Stop buying cigarettes and alcohol! And stop “celebrating” everytime you get a paycheck. That’s right. Many of my soldiers live paycheck-by-pay check. I could live for couple years in the Army and still have money to spare, damn! And with regards to money, I follow the principles of the Bible. I don’t ask for the money back. To me, money is just a sad necessity in this world. I want to use my money just to help people. I can’t wait for Jesus to come back. Then, everybody will help each other and the Law will be on everyone’s hearts. I don’t worship money, unlike my dad, I worship God.

I also look to my past a lot now. I remember what Shi-Min Lu, my former Junior High Sunday School teacher said:”Young people like you.. always look to the future, but people like me, we look to our past.” I asked her why not just look to the future, like we do? But she told me that people her age really has nothing to look forward to. For me, everyday has its own challenges, it’s unpredictable, but I look to my past, because it brings me comfort. I think of all the memories when I loved life, when it’s exciting, when It’s fun. I’m a dreamer, and I talk to myself all the time. Jesus is my best friend, and I am the second best friend. It’s fun and exciting to talk to yourself, if you know how. I think of solutions and ideas and brainstorm so much better if I talk to myself. I would talk about my past, sing, whatever. Be your own best friend.

I think looking to my past is why I loved 睡夢鄉 (Land of Dreams). I loved the stories, I loved the songs. I would sing them almost everyday. It’s a miracle for me to enjoy what I enjoyed so much in the past.
Ok! So I’m coming back on December 25, 2009 and leaving on January 4th 2010. I will act like Neo with his sunglasses on, so don’t expect me to behave to warmly.

10/22/09

10/22/09

S: 7:38pm
E: 7:49pm

I should not fear man, but fear God. Sigh, it’s depressing that I have to endure so much. The pain of weakness, of tireness, of legerthaic. I also have to endure the smiles and jokes of evil ones. Yes, evil ones. They say things that are funny, but wrong. It really isn’t funny. God doesn’t think its funny. Providing strangers with hospitality is pleasing and like a joke to heaven. The Bible said that there is no one who does good, on one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become corrupt. That is true, so true. It is in times like this, when I am surrounded by evil, that I long for peace. I long to be by myself, praying, seeking, worshiping God. Sigh, that is what I should be doing right before the field. Surely I do not have the things of God in my heart. I hate evil because God hates evil. I hate evil because it is against life. It is against love. It is against fairness and justice.

I am just so tired. I want to sleep, to rest in sweet peace. You know what, I’m going to sing along some of my Christian music. I must have Jesus. I cannot bear my burdens alone. I am weary and weak.

You know, many times, I wish I can be weak forever. By being weak, I seek and acknowledge God. I tend to seek the Lord if I am weak. If being weak helps me to seek the Lord, then I would rather have provety than riches, for I know that I have nothing apart from God. It is not my money but God’s. God owns everything I have. If someone steals from me, they are not stealing from me, no, they can have them, I will gladly give it to them, but they are stealing from God. Let God be the judge; let God be my judge. I will not resist evil men, for I know who holds tomorrow. Because Jesus lives, I can live again. Because Jesus lives, I can live tomorrow.