Mystery of life transforms your outlook and perspective in a split second, from ordinary to extra-ordinary. Here I am, back behind the computer desk typing away once again. Two years after I last penned my thoughts, I return to writing again. The lockdown in California drew me to the backyard by these tiny creatures, sharing our resources.
How Mystery Struck
How it started was nothing short of an ordinary mundane morning and yet extra-ordinary because my eyes spotted a tiny creature, motionless and it almost felt dead. In the next instance, my life changed. My perspective differed and the implication was profound.
From an intense love for macro photography to an addiction to gardening. From a woman often questioning about herself, full of self-doubt, to growing confidence and realizing a potential she never thought she has.
That tiny creature turned out to have a name. I later found out that it was a painted lady butterfly. Through the lens, I saw her eyes, the patterns on her wings, her long curly tongue and her hairy legs. In that instance, I declared she was beautiful.
Mystery of life That Seeks Perfection
The next day, I spent an hour each morning for an entire year, just to catch a glimpse of tiny creatures in the backyard. At the same time, in my best effort, I learned to capture thousands of images just so I could obtain that one perfect shot. Perfection drove me on from one to another and before I knew it, I had about a dozen captures. Over time self-doubt left me and as a result, I became passionate in macro photography.
I started working on my mother-in-law’s front yard garden while hoping to attract new species. I put my vision onto the paper and with some assistance from my husband, I finally saw the fairy garden came to live.
Uncertain times often reveal what’s hidden within. It is an honest indicator of who you really are. What do you mean? When life is good, you enjoy the fruit of your labor. Right?
However, when life becomes tough, what you do reflect what’s truly within. It also reveals things you may never consider before in good times. Most of all, it spotlights on what you are capable as well as what you lack.
Challenges reveal who we really are
If you are tough, the toughness in you illuminates. If you on the other hand, cannot take toughness, in difficult times, you either collapse or rise up. Why? Challenges push us to our limit.
Often, these moments in our lives give us a good indication of who we really are. Subsequently, they give us a clear picture of what we are made of. There are 4 different groups that I would like to discuss today.
During challenging times, are you a hoarder? Are you a giver? Are you a oppressor? Or are you one who overcome? Sometimes, you get surprises that you never know you have in you. Lets look at each one closely as we go along.
Uncertain times – Are you a hoarder?
When corona-virus initially break out in United States, we suddenly found ourselves run out of toilet papers. We joke about it all the time in the social media networks. But, it is true. People hoard toilet papers.
Why do people hoard? Those who hoard things are often insecure especially during a time of uncertainty. Yet, many who hoard prepare themselves for some tougher time for the long haul.
They make projection, in preparation for the future and sometimes, over react, thus creating a dilemma unknowingly. Hoarders are however survivors because they always react ahead of time. Like they say, early birds get the worms. Hoarders are not all bad
However, there is one particular group that I detest. They hoard for their pleasure. Such behavior is called self-indulgence. If you hoard for necessity I can understand and such behavior is expected. Those who hoard to indulge in their pleasure need to learn to share with those who do not have enough.
Are you a giver?
Givers shine so brightly in time like this. They are always ready to give and they will naturally look for opportunities to give. In uncertain times, our society need them.
For instance, whether it’s time, financial and or energy, they will avail themselves to those in needs. The truth is, they never tired when it comes to giving. A giver will give no matter what.
A giver makes sacrifices for the greater good. In such time, they naturally put others’ needs before theirs. Sometimes, you get surprises and you realize you have more to give than you think you have.
That is a pleasant surprise to someone who never realize it.
Are you an oppressor?
If you oppress others, you are a bully. You are also a control freak. You are constantly in need to control others around you. In challenging time, you tend to demand for control because you feel insecure without it.
In such time, you need to learn to let go of that urge to take full control of the situation. Finally, let others help you when you feel helpless. Give someone you trust the opportunity to take charge what you cannot.
If you become an oppressor under stress because you cannot cope, get help. Let someone know you need help. Call helpline if need to, talk to someone who can help you and know that it is okay to ask for help if you need it.
Uncertain times – Are you an over-comer?
It is awesome to know you overcome a tough situation. You have what it takes to become an over-comer. You are stronger and better because you never give up when it gets challenging. Give yourself a pat on your back.
In difficult time, look out for over-comers and seek them out intentionally. Let them know how proud you are and remind them they are heroes of such a time.
The truth is when you overcome challenges in uncertain times, you see a new you, you’ve never know it exists before.
So, which group are you? Are you a hoarder that you suspect all along? Or are you a giver, an oppressor or to your surprise, an over-comer?
Nourish your soul by listening to music that inspires you. What do you find yourself listening to lately? I find comfort through music. Music is able to reflect the true state of our minds and emotions.
In fact, music has that ability to stir your soul unlike any other. For instance, when you are anxious, what help to calm you down? When you lose focus, what brings you back? When you are feeling hopeless, what gives you hope?
What brings you joy and what gives you comfort? Often times, the answer is music. Today, I share two songs with you. When I listen to them, I find hope and comfort. The first song is Way Maker by Leeland.
In times of uncertainty
While we continue to maintain a social distance from others because of Corona-virus, we tend to isolate from people. Thus, feeling at times alone and depressed.
This song draws me to God’s faithfulness and His power to do even the impossible, people need restoration and His ability to heal the sick. The next song that draw me to God is King of my heart.
Life is good because of God
When life is is so full of uncertainty, God is certain. He is the same, yesterday, today and forever more. God is my anchor of hope I cling onto. He is the refreshing air I need daily.
Story behind this beautiful hymn – Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus
Story behind great hymns often lift up our faith. These stories touch our lives more than any other. These men and women lived to tell their stories in order to pen down their deepest thoughts and their enduring faith.
We feel honored to read their stories through these amazing hymns. So in light of that, we share this beautiful hymn called ‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus’.
As it begins
This one started with a beautiful sunny day. A day where nothing could go wrong and a family enjoying their time together at a picnic. A perfect couple spent their beautiful afternoon with their daughter.
However, in an instant, their lives changed. That is a little girl lost her beloved father that day and a blissful wife became a widow. Life is therefore full of unexpected events.
According to God tube, here is the full record of what happened that day.
Story behind the hymn
It was a beautiful sunny day. Louisa M. Stead, her husband, and her daughter Lily decided to go for a picnic. They went picnicking on Long Island Sound. While having their picnic, the Steads heard a scream. It was from a young boy.
Mr. Stead ran to the rescue. Louisa Stead and young Lily watched helplessly as Mr. Stead and the boy drowned. Their troubles were not over yet, however, and without her husband, Mrs. Stead became very poor and destitute.Yet God never left her. He provided for her always and she and her daughter made it through.
Louisa learned to trust God, and thus the words to the song ‘Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus.’ Shortly after this incident, Louisa and her daughter Lily moved to South Africa where they became missionaries.
Lets listen to this beautiful hymn
Despite the tragedy, Louisa chose to see God’s faithfulness and His ability to provide for her and lily’s needs. She went on to pen this beautiful hymn expressing her gratitude to Jesus, her Lord and provider.
I am thankful
I am thankful today because through her life of courage, I have this wonderful hymn in me knowing that I can be brave like her. Therefore, trusting in Jesus in times of uncertainty and unforeseen circumstance in my life.
Lets draw strength from this wonderful hymn and trust in God’s provision even though there are times we cannot feel or see Him at work. He is always right there with us all.
May you and your family be blessed in this season. Be strong and encouraged. Our God is mighty and you are not alone.
Resurrection Sunday is what we called Easter Sunday. When we think about Easter, bunnies and chocolate appear. Sorry little ones, it is not about them. It is however, about Jesus.
I know you can’t wait for eggs hunt and munching on your yummy delicious bunny. Auntie Eileen does not like to spoil your fun but, yes, it is about Jesus. Who is Jesus? He is the Son of God.
Why is Jesus so important?
Why is Easter all about Him?
But Jesus said, “ Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Guess what? Each and every little ones are important to Him. Therefore, Easter Sunday is about you, not the bunnies or even the chocolate. Listen up! Jesus loves you very much.
How much does Jesus love me?
Well, He loves you this much that He died on the Cross to save you. To save me from what? He died to save you from your sins (the wrong that we all do against God). We are not able to save ourselves.
Therefore, we need Jesus because He is the perfect man to do the job. God sent His Son Jesus to save us, not because we deserve being saved. God is a good God. He loves you.
Do you know, God creates you for Him? Sometimes, we do not know exactly how love works or how amazing it is to love with all your heart, soul and mind. Yet, God yearns for such love from you.
The Bible says
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has punishment. He who fears is not made perfect in love.
1 John 4:18
Come to Jesus
Therefore, do not fear, come to Jesus. Auntie Eileen has one more good news to share with you. When Jesus died on the Cross, he was buried in a tomb. But, three days after, He was raised from the dead. He actually resurrected. Hence, we celebrate Resurrection Sunday.
Kids should have fun and enjoy some delicious chocolate bunnies. Just remember on this special day, Easter Sunday is not all about bunnies or chocolates, it is about the love of a man named Jesus who loves you so much that he gave his life in exchange for yours.
He is so powerful that even death cannot hold him down. Will you come to Jesus? This is what Easter is all about. Have a wonderful Easter everyone and stay safe! Auntie Eileen will see you soon.
Sacrifice comes from within, it is therefore voluntary. What do you understand by that? It simply means someone gives up something for a greater cause or higher purpose.
If you know the Bible, you hear a lot about God sacrificing His Son Jesus, right? Often you wonder why? We hear a lot about humans offering sacrifices to their gods, unlike this God. He offers His Son.
According to the Old Testament
God in the old testament requires sacrifices. However, not just any sacrifice. Only the unblemished offerings accepted by God pass the test. If our sacrifices remain unacceptable, how can we ever please God?
When we offer an animal to God, we pick the best, without blemish. God then accept it and our sins are forgiven that way. What happens when our offering no longer appease Him? What then?
That ultimately became a problem. For sins became too great. That meant from generation to generation, sin became unbearable to a point, God could not let it resume the way it did.
Sacrifice – Something got to to change
The Bible says:
” For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, “
Nobody can therefore meet God’s standard. Can humans ever please God? Subsequently, do you think this question ever pops up in God’s mind?
When God send His only begotten Son Jesus to die on the Cross, is He addressing this question?
The ultimate question
The ultimate question we ask is: ‘Can a man save himself?’ If we all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory, is it possible we can save ourselves?
Are we able to find within ourselves, the ability to save? In light of what God requires, do we pass the test? In other word, can we pass the test?
Last supper also known as the Holy Communion was the final meal that Jesus took with his twelve disciples before He got arrested. It was the final moment they ate together.
As we examine the event, what are the significant takeaway that we can observe, highlight and apply to ourselves? As we keep these in mind, let us begin, shall we?
The final meal together
As you knew, this event happened, being the final time Jesus ate with His twelve disciples. Did the disciples know that it would in fact be the last time they ate with Jesus? Think about that?
The final meal revolved around the Passover. How significant was this event to the Jewish people? When you are free, take time to read Matthew 26:17-30, Mark 14:12-26, Luke 22:7-38, John 13:1-20. After reading through these passages, you may conclude that a series of events happened.
So, it was not simply about eating their final meal together. It was in fact, a chain of events followed. I hope you take time to study it
Last supper – 2 key take home messages
While they were eating,
Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.
When we part take the Holy Communion, it reminds us how Jesus being the body sacrifice himself by dying on the cross, so as to save us from our sins. His blood pours out for us so as to cleanse us of all our sins.
The last supper duly reminds us what he did for us. The one key take home point is this, Jesus broke the bread and took the cup, ate and drank with His disciples while He was with them. While we, do not.
Last supper – Jesus never hate Judas
The second take home message is that Jesus never hate Judas. Even knowing that Judas intended to betray Him, Jesus never exposed his intention, only quietly confronted him.
None of the others really knew who was the culprit. In fact, they were busy arguing about something else, non essential. If you read the Bible further, you will learn that Judas Iscariot isn’t the only disciple who betray Jesus.
Jesus never hate Peter either. It would be interesting if you read about what Judas did and compare it to what Peter did, in the end.
The Father’s will
Jesus’ desire was to please His Father and to fulfill His will. Jesus said:
Yet not My will, but Yours be done.
How can we apply what we gather through this study? Would you hate Judas for what he did if you were Jesus? What is that one take away knowing what you know today?
I hope that after our discussion, it sparks your interest to read the Bible more and gives you the tool to study the Bible. Stay safe everyone and have a blessed week.
Who is God? That He would be mindful of me? Today’s devotion reminds us how powerful and yet how good He is to us.
He protects, and at the same time, He orders His angels to guard us in all our ways. How amazing is that?
Who is He?
Good morning to the first day of the Holy Week
Before I address you further, let me greet you with a welcome and hello as well as good morning! What a beautiful new day God gives us.
When we wake up this morning and we realize we are healthy and strong, we want to give thanks to God for that blessing.
How can we serve?
During uncertain time such as this, each new day is a blessing from God to spend with our families as well as an opportunity to learn of God’s goodness.
Therefore, let us treasure every opportunity to serve Him. However, to those who suffer from COVID 19 and do not know Jesus, what can we do for them?
For in stance, we can take this time to lift them up to our Heavenly Father. Let us begin by praying for healing. In addition to that, those who do not know Jesus, lets pray that Jesus will reveal to them in dreams and visions that they too will be saved.
As you know – Who is God?
Meanwhile, as you know we are officially into the first day of the Holy Week. God reminds us of His amazing goodness and how His love covers us all.
Who is God that commands His angels to guard our steps? According to this verse it says:
Who is God – Psalm 91:11
Isn’t it amazing, knowing God will do that for us? Similarly, what a comfort to remember that God cares enough to keep us protected.
In uncertain time like this, we hold on to God’s promises and know assuredly that He protects us from all harm if we trust in Him. Remember to pray for those who are not yet saved. Have a blessed day and stay safe!
Palm Sunday is the Sunday before the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Why is it so important for believers to pay attention to that special day?
In the past years, I have not mentioned the significance of this day. However, in light of this year’s theme, I believe, it is appropriate to share my thought on it.
Reasons for celebration
This year, I talked a lot on preparation and part of it was to get ready for something important. Palm Sunday was Jesus preparing for the most important even of his life. It also prepared everyone for what was about to happen.
Did we know what was Jesus thinking when he rode on the donkey as he entered Jerusalem? Did he ever doubt? If you were Jesus, what would you do?
Palm Sunday – Reasons He did it
One reason was to remind ourselves that on that Sunday, the crowd honored Him. They fulfilled God’s plan, whether they knew it or not. Our existence could become part of God’s plan and purpose.
Another reason to celebrate, was to remind ourselves that Jesus thought of you and me while he rode down the street of Jerusalem. He did not give in to His emotions. Ultimately, He did it for us. He did it to fulfill His Father’s plan. Imagine, what if He decided not to go through the plan?
Finally, we need to know that it was time. It was His time. The time has come that He was to fulfill what He was here for. He was about to die on the Cross, then resurrect in 3 days after His death.
Do you know that God has a purpose for you? For instant, God has a plan for your life. When you know God, you learn about His plan for your life.
Let us remember how special this day is. This is the day we celebrate God’s goodness. He prepared Jesus all along for time like this. Thank you Jesus for not giving up on us.
We are able to live purposeful lives because Jesus show us how He did it. We owe Jesus our freedom. Have a blessed and safe Palm Sunday everyone!
COVID 19 isn’t politics, its about saving American lives. What can we learn from this year’s pandemic? That all American lives matter.
Politicians need to stop playing politics. At the same time, media need to work on providing American people accurate facts, not propaganda.
That is, if we are going to survive this pandemic together.
It is not time to press your agenda
Can we ride through this wave with least damage, more lives saved? In 2009, we went through a H1N1 flu pandemic with about 12,000 lives lost.
On the other hand, I will not blame any politicians for the fallout. However, there are certain points that I hope our politicians will address after this pandemic is over.
Be better prepared for future deadly pandemics
I hope Congress (House and Senate) will address this issue seriously with the future White House administration.
At the Federal level, we need to enforce measures. Such as, enforcing both (Democrats and Republicans) to stockpile medical supplies at a certain quota, annually. Therefore, it should be non-negotiable.
Being smart and getting ready for a disaster, is the right thing to do. Any time, the stockpile is low, replenish. That is, regardless of party. American people need our government to take care of us not play politics.
COVID 19- What can we learn from this?
In time like this, we learn that we are all globally connected whether we like it or not. Meanwhile, pandemics are here to stay. The degree of it, is what we need to study on.
Politicians need to put aside their agenda and work together. Why? All American lives matter, whether Democrats or Republicans, all lives matter.
We need to stop the hate
If we are indeed going to survive through this pandemic, we need everyone to unite. Democrats or Republicans, media or propaganda, we need each other to make it through.
This is the spirit of support and love we need to see from one another. It is not about our fight that will eventually make that difference. It will be our unity that will get us through this wave.
Not many will agree on this but the truth is, we need each other. Our hate will lead us nowhere. Stay safe together and we will ride through this pandemic, better than ever.