Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Learn to Unlearn.

The thing with being in new places is that you're forced to unlearn at a certain level, if that makes any sense. Of course learning is inevitable, but more than ever, I think unlearning is what really makes a difference.

The moment we step into a new place, we are still our old selves. We come with certain perspectives, wired in certain ways. Our old habits and personalities are still there. And that's not necessarily a bad thing, because everyone is somewhat like that and everyone is to some extend pretty stubborn at wanting to keep them that way. But what I find is that the more I let go of what I know about how to function, and unlearn my perspectives, take the risk of not having the perfect day in exchange of possibly a free-chilling-adventurous day, I ended up learning so much.

Simple things as walking slower not to be ahead of everyone else's pace, looking up and around intentionally every few steps to let the surroundings sink in. Making small talks to people I just met, letting other people pick what to order from the menu when we go out to eat. Not setting schedules! It's amazing what you discover in new places when you let yourselves bend you for a bit.

And as I take the time to sit and ponder on this, I find that perhaps this is how God wants us to think too. Because as He call us into His grace, give us new life and start to do things in our lives, we should constantly have our perspectives renewed, right? I'm not saying we should let go of our core values, of our core identity. But I think as we venture to new places, serve in different ministries, get connected to diverse groups of people to share about Jesus, we need to somehow let God bend and shape us to fit what He wants us to become.

Knowing how unlimited and capable God is to do so much, shouldn't we be in a mindset that leaves room for God to be creative? To make miracles beyond what we can imagine? To always (YES, ALWAYS) be surprised and blown away by the ways God just appear out of nowhere, in perfect timing?

I think this is what happens when we go to new places. I think this is what should happen when we step into our new lives. To unlearn from our old selves, making room to learn to become who we need to, ought to and called to be.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Writers' Block.

I don’t get how people say “write through the process” or “you know, if you’re experiencing writers’ block then just write about it”. Because well, first: It’s a block. Dead end. When you don’t know what to write, you can’t write. That’s why you call it a writers’ block. But if you still can write something, you’re not at a block. You’re simply writing something. 


In case you’re confused, a writers’ block is a situation when writers just don’t know what to write anymore. It happens quite often actually. For some of us it happens everyday, or maybe everytime before we’re about to write something. I’ve been having this writers’ block for a while, and it has really disrupt my writing schedules. But what I’ve come to learn is that a writers’ block is simply a state of mind. 

Okay, maybe it’s a little bit more than that. It’s the way we allow our emotions and thoughts to collide and combine into one huge cloud of overwhelming feelings. And it paralyzes because we can’t think straight. Not thinking straight means not being able to organize our thoughts into neat bubbles and lists, and that’s why we can’t write. 

What’s funny about this is I found how the concept of writers’ block is so similar to our relationship with God. Because I find myself on a dead end in my growth spiritually when I allow my feelings and emotions to be my focus, and therefore I can’t see things from God’s perspective. This paralyzes too, because I become dry and confused and lost in vision. But when I get back to training my state of heart to keep looking at what God’s doing, where He’s going, I function very well. And even more, I can write very well too. 

This is why I still believe that inspiration is a divine thing. Because it takes a lot of effort to see things from a different perspective. To find something so insignificant, like an eraser or a shadow of a door, to reflect something deep and meaningful about life. And as artists (especially), it’s such a waste to allow what we think and what we feel to get in the way of this divine process, when we can in fact be at peace and take charge of our hearts (or, for some of us, let the Holy Spirit take charge). 

When we know how to rest our hearts, our minds can think. 
When we can think, we can create. 
When we create, we can inspire. 
When we inspire, we can make a difference. 

Monday, June 6, 2016

I Make Sense.

This could be one of the most self-centered titles ever for any blog post, but who cares? 

As we all know, a lot of people just don’t make sense. I bet as you read this, you already have names of those so-called “annoying” people in your head. For all it’s worth, it could even be my name popping up among the others. But it’s true, right? Some people (I sure hope it’s not me), just don’t make sense AT ALL. 

There are various reasons why they don’t, let’s look at some of them: 
  1. Immature
  2. Stubborn
  3. Having a bad day 
  4. Grieving
  5. Exams week
  6. Really angry
  7. Really hungry
  8. In love
  9. Just broke up 
  10. Etc. 

I think we all have gone through at least one of them. I can even bet most of us have gone through all of them. And in these moments we do and say things that just don’t make sense. Or perhaps it’s not so much about what comes out from us, but the way we see things. Our perspective suddenly becomes a blur, clouding our judgments and pressuring us to make a collection of unwise decisions. Eventually, we lead ourselves to a pit of shame and guilt and just dark stuff. 

And I love how it annoys people when we don’t make sense, because it’s such a wonderful reminder of how we should function. I believe we should know how to make sense of things. Although we may not know everything, but to some extend we should be able to behave and perceive in a way that is logical and beneficial to ourselves and others. 

How do we do this? I find that for me to ensure that I make sense, that life spins according to how it should spin, is through worship. In my dry-est seasons, the times when I’m so disengaged with God’s plan and purposes that I don’t even know what to have faith in, I find worship to be a place that ties the knot together. And I think it is not rocket science to figure this out, because we humans were made to worship God, weren’t we? We weren’t made to live for ourselves. So the minute we do forget what we’re made of and what we’re made for, the universe will seem to spin in all its chaotic orders. Because in our heads, it’s not in order. But when we worship, we inevitably enter a state of putting God as God, and ourselves as humans fulfilling our purpose: glorifying God. 

I make sense when I consciously worship. It doesn’t mean I sing all the time, but I learn to intentionally make everything about worship. From as simple as saying “hello” to someone, to helping a student pick up a pencil on the floor. It could be anything. But I found that when my heart and mind is focused on worshipping God, what I’m doing and what I’m supposed to do becomes clear. I come alive, I get excited and I don’t annoy people that much anymore. Because for once I finally make sense.