5/8/2011: Steven Spiritual Exchange

5/8/2011: Steven Spiritual Exchange

S: 8:14pm
E: 9:07pm

I have not been writing a lot on my blog because, well, there has been no reason for me to write. No revelation and no desire. But I feel I need to write this one.

I have not been active a lot because I did a lot of evil things; I just underwent a season of sin. That is why on April 29, I decided to start my spiritual exchange, similar to the stock exchanges of the world. I use my intuition to determine how the day went spiritually and adjust the values accordingly.

It’s hard. I’m still trying to satisfy my desires through God and not through the world. That is why today, I also made a list of “If you’s” I will share after this post.

I sin. I mess up, but God’s mercy is very great. He knows my heart and He will be my Judge.

Other less-important things I want to share. Tomorrow our battery is doing a special training. Some platoons are going scuba-diving but my platoon is going to play paintball! Woot, I’m so excited! I received the rest of my IDF uniform from my dad earlier last week but I’m apprehensive about wearing it for paintball.. When I drove back to base today from church, I was randomly selected to undergo a vehicle inspection. I was never stopped before but I had courage because God tells me to and He is in control. I turned off my car, opened up all the doors and hatches and stood aside. When I opened the back hood, I saw my car sticker that reads “Be strong and courageous” in both Hebrew and English in blue and white and I grew a bit embarrassed. I’m planning to one day post it just above the driver side door handle so I can be encouraged every time I drive and take a picture to make it my profile picture. I’m still using the wisdom from God to find the right time.


I did not go to my church last Sunday or the youth fellowship last Friday. One of my friends called me but I chose not the answer him. Sometimes I get depressed and want to give up on God because of my sins but I always turn back to Him in the end. Praise God that I always come back to Him.

Today is Mother’s Day!! I tried calling my mom yesterday and today but she did not answer. I will try every day until I can reach her. For the sermon today, my pastor, Pastor Olan, talked about the “Wife of Noble Character” which is in Proverbs 31. His intent in sharing this is not to reprimand mothers for not being like her, but as an encouragement to fathers and mothers; to be “all you can be” (kind of like an Army commercial haha).

To start, he recited “The love of a mother” written by Helen Steiner Rice

~ The Love of A Mother ~

It takes a Mother’s love
to make a house a home,
A place to be remembered,
no matter where we roam…

It takes a Mother’s patience
to bring a child up right,
And her courage and her cheerfulness
to make a dark day bright…

It takes a Mother’s thoughtfulness
to mend the heart’s deep “hurts,”
And her skill and her endurance
to mend little socks and shirts…

It takes a Mother’s kindness
to forgive us when we err,
To sympathize in trouble
and bow her head in prayer…

It takes a Mother’s wisdom
to recognize our needs
And to give us reassurance
by her loving words and deeds…

It takes a Mother’s endless faith,
her confidence and trust
To guide us through the pitfalls
of selfishness and lust…

And that is why in all this world
there could not be another
Who could fulfill God’s purpose
as completely as a Mother!

Helen Steiner Rice
http://www.peacefulhush.com/pagessecond/07/78motherlove.php

One of the funny things my pastor shared is that it’s hard to be a mother. About a year and half ago, his wife went out of state. He tried doing the chores of a mother and ended up lying down exhausted! He said that mothers have to do the same things everyday! Mothers truly are a gift from God.

[from notes] The wisdom of the Proverbs begins with a command to fear the Lord (Provb 1:7) and ends with a mother with strong character, wisdom, and great compassion. God allows you to become who you are today.

Proverbs 31 may not be describing one woman but a picture of ideal motherhood. Her qualities include:

Hard work
Fear of God
Respect for husband
Planning for future
Encouragement
Care for others
Wisdom in handling money

Her strength and dignity does not come from accomplishments but from her reverence of God. It’s also interesting to mention that her appearance was never mentioned. Her beauty comes from her character.

After describing the characteristics of each, he ended by saying that this is the kind of wife every guy should pray for “if and when God brings her to him.”

The children choir came and sang “Blessed am I” words and music by Susan Noyes Anderson: http://www.kerbymusic.org/vocal/blessed-am-i. When the children sang, I closed my eyes and tried to remember memories of my mom.

Blessed am I

11/29/2010: Free-writing

11/29/2010: Free-writing

S: 7:38am

E: 8:21am

I love journal writing or writing on my discovery because I get to free-write. I love free writing because I get to put my thoughts out. It doesn’t have to make sense; it just has to make sense to God :) .

Well, actually, it’s quite hard to free write when I’m also trying to defecate. Heh, but it’s okay, what matters is that I do my best to worship God.

This world is so messed up now. I can sense it every day and it seems to be getting stronger. I can feel more hate when passing people. I still try to say “hi!” or “good to see you.” They can hate but I will love because love comes from God.

It’s sad that when times are hard, people tend to be meaner to each other. They love others less while they love themselves more. When times are good, if you say “hi” to them, most likely they will say “hi” back. Now, if I say “hi” to them, they just ignore me. I can sense the increased amount of stress. I think this is what distinguishes Christians and non-Christians. When times are hard, Christians tend to rely more on God and seek spiritual help from other Christians. They become more loving, happy, patient, peaceful, because these heavenly gifts comes from God. Non-Christians, however, transfer the love they had for people back to themselves. They become more selfish, more self-centered, meaner, and they do more evil things. When a disaster comes, Christians tend to help people while non-Christians tend to destroy people. And yes, there are good people outside of Christianity too, but that is self-righteousness. The Bible says there is no one good but God alone (Mark 10:18). The good things that we do come from the flesh and since they come from the flesh, they are like “filthy rags” to God (Isaiah 64:6). The flesh can do both good and evil but because it is also capable of evil, the flesh is hostile to God (Romans 8:5-7). His standard is perfection (Matthew 5:48). Only our spirit, through God’s Holy Spirit is acceptable to Him because it is completely good. We can only worship God in spirit and in truth.

Okay, I finally took a dump! Mission accomplished! Heh. I remember while I was still on the say, I thought of the verse:

James 1:15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

I need to be careful. It’s not what I want; it’s what God wants. I think I thought of this because to me, taking a dump is like giving birth. It’s not easy and once the movements come, I have to go! I can’t just give birth any time I want.

I remember my mom also has this problem. Sometimes, she would say, “Praise God, I was finally able to drop a big one!” or “Aaah, I feel so good now, now that I took a dump.” I would be surprised that she said it but, now, it makes sense. Once I feel what others feel, it makes sense.

I think the ability to pray to God is such a wonderful gift. When this world gives me the hates, I can always talk to God in prayer. I know that God is the ultimate judge and power comes from Him. I feel peace in the midst of chaos because I can always talk to God about my thoughts and troubles. Anxiety

1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

I will always pray, pray, when things go wrong till in your heart rings heaven’s song, the loving God, His voice will hear come back to Him he’s always near.

Communication with people is important, but communication with God is more important. Everything that has to do with God is always more important because God is always important. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, and He created us.

There is still so much I want to write such as the “trial-and-error” logic. Human reasoning is very flawed because there is always something that humans don’t know. On the other hand, God’s Word is always correct because God knows everything. One reason why I love free-writing is because it also allows me to a preparatory phase before writing a paper on a topic. Maybe that’s what I’m going to do! When I get an essay assignment from English class, instead of using outlines, and drafts, I will just write about it. Free-write. Then, I can reread and harvest the gems to put on my essay, after some organization. To beat an essay I will write about it. To win a war, like what Winston Churchill did, he just talked about it!

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….

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.

18 Apr 09

[written diary]

18 Apr 09

End: 1041

I am just so weak. I’ve seen God’s love and God’s faith but still I refuse to follow Him. I dreamed dreams but still that’s not enough. Why do I sin against God so much? Why do I challenge God so much? Now I have to do CQ and I’m tired. I don’t think I will have the energy to stay awake but I know that God will still help me. God will make a way, even when there seems no way. I think and believe that God is punishing me for my lack of faith. I think, due to signs and dreams, I have God’s OK to tutor children. But I must worship God all the time. I must not fail again. I think CQ is God’s way of helping me defeat myself. Less of me and more of Him. I also must be longsuffering. Not just to other people, but also with my sinful self. Still, it will be a while before I actually try. I want to be a better believer, soldier, and tutor.

 

18 Apr 09

S: 1245

E: 1257

I remember when I was young, my mom would have me read a chapter of Proverbs a day, 31 in all. Thanks to her guidance, I am now a good, nicer person. The book of Proverbs is very important because it teaches you the laws and commands of God. It comforts me to know what God can do for us when we behave (heh) and follow Him. I guess, no, I should have taught Proverbs to my children (students) during summer. But no. I chose the dark path of sin and indiscipline. I. there’s a lot of bad that I have done. But God still loves me and he disciplines me. I should have followed Him the first time but I failed. If I do have another chance with children, I would do what my mom did. I would have them read a chapter of Proverbs a day and then write about their thoughts, reflections, etc. It would be like free-writing.

However, I must obey God and follow His will. I might want to start memorizing specific Bible verses.

 

18 Apr 09

S: about 1500

I just have to suffer. Everyday, all of the way. I have to suffer from other’s painful attacks, from my sinful self, and my weak body. And of course, from Satan, the cause of all evil.

Heh, without Satan, I would be in the Garden of Eden, singing praises to God. But no. Bue to sin, I am in a world where people lie, steal, and kill, a place where wars and rumor of wars never end.

I suffer during the weekday so much that I look forward to the weekends to rest and recooperate myself. Now, even in the weekends, I have to suffer greatly.

Can there be no end to my suffering? No, until Jesus comes to establish His righteous kingdom on Earth or until I die, for when I die, I will be at rest, with kings of the earth.

Will I be able to withstand the suffering? To take it and move on? Nothing but the blood of Jesus, sweetest name I know.

 

18 Apr 09

S: 1528

Proverbs 4:16: For they cannot sleep till they do evil.

How many times has this verse applied to me! I cannot sleep until I play some computer games. I cannot sleep until I satisify the desires of my flesh.

I must learn the way of the righteous.

8/12/04

{written diary}

8/12/04    8:44pm

Because my mom woke me up to help her on the computer, and because I have the inclindication to write my discovery, I decided to write this.  Alot of things or events has happened to me lately.  Most noticeable is my birthday, which in Aug. 14.  Only two days left.  I got music echoing in my head.  Do you know what it is?  It’s the blue.. 31. something.  The drama’s name is in Chinese.  The music is this soft melody with no words.  It makes me think of pure love and resilience.  The movie itself is sad.  So sad that I would have cried if no one is at home.  I feel so sorry for the abused girl.  She is so beautiful.  I fell in love with her.  The other girl, the evil one, is also very pretty, but evil.  She is also cute and I like her to.  Now this is the problem.  Why do I keep getting lusted by girls?  I want to love only one and one girl.  She has to be the best in this world.  All I want and desire is that.  I want a girlfriend.  I want to sleep and talk to the girl I love.  But the problem is that I fall in “love” with so many!  Everytime if I am sad or depressed, I will try to sing a song to cheer me up.  And you know what?  I’m still in love with Julia, Jennifer, and other girls, especially Ruby.  I have desires for them.  That is messed up.  I would love to date one of them, of course if I date one of them, I can only love her only.  And there is a huge percentage that she might be my wife.  And I am also playing mu.  It’s a fun game but I know its of little value.  Cannan {ln} persuiated me to limit my games to only two hours per day in summer and half of my study time on games on weekends.  No gaming allowed on weekday.  I’m sorry, but I’m tired of writing this.  I think writing this is pointless.  No one will read this, and no one will care much.  Not one of my dreams could come true.  I want (not need) a girlfriend.

11-16-03

11-16-03 Sunday
9:01 am

No more ringing on my door, maybe you don’t love me anymore… Ruby, so ruby, I wonder how are you doing? Can you beat your world record of 60? Yesterday, I tried to beat you Ruby,
but I didn’t even beat my highest, 50. Instead the highest I got was about 30. I wonder what happened? Maybe I’m losing you Ruby. It’s always hard to say good bye to you my Ruby.
If you loved me Ruby, you would have been… and that drilling noise my Dad is making won’t bother me from writing this to you. If you loved me Ruby, you would have played tennis
with me, and we would have stayed afterschool together. But I think it is not all your fault. I made alot of mistakes too. I should have been more bolder. Right now, my Mom is
going to church. I used to go to church, but not anymore. Why? I’ll tell you that when I finish talking about you Ruby. Cause Ruby is always first in my diary. Always First, and
last in my diary. The less importand things will go in the middle such as how’s my day’s going, and any emergicies I may have. Even if I die, it will still be in the middle,
because my Ruby will always be in the beginning and the end of my diary. (Don’t forget the reason I’m writing this diary is because of you Ruby, so ruby.) Ya, I should have hang out
with you after school, and talked to you instead of going home right away, and I should have joined the tennis club like right now! I will (fu**) I can’t even spell one simple word!
I will develp (Damm myself) a Win-Win relationship with you. I will repeat that (I got MS word so I have spell check.) I will develop (good, finally) a honest, Win-Win relationship
with you Ruby. If you loved me. Heh, that is the title of a book I just finished reading. I’m going to do a book talk on that book. Do you have Ms. Bonfils? Well, she’s my English
teacher. I need to take a dump right now, but Ruby comes first. Once I’m done talking about you, then I’ll go. The book “If you Loved Me” is about the main character, Lauren trying
to keep her old promise of being a virgin until after college. Tyler, her boyfriend, pressured Lauren to have sex with him. Although, Lauren loves loves Tyler, she doesn’t want to
break her old promise. That is the main confict of the story. There are also many conficts. Such as the red car, Amber’s secret Lauren told to someone, her mom, Grams, volleyball
game, Harp (the creative writing teacher I think), and more. I really enjoyed reading this book, in fact, I want you to read it to. Ruby, if only our relationship is as strong
as Lauren and Tyler. If only. If only you loved me.