The Creatures Within Me

An untamed creature

makes my heart its abode

A creature which roars, rolls over and cries,

melts down, rises, then explodes…

Sentiment, they call it,

this separate entity which lives within.

It duels Reason, clawing it like a beast,

and Reason, standing firm and strong,

bears the pain; it shall not give in.

The dichotomy is torment,

the tearing of what must be one.

Hark, ye Sentiment, submit to Reason,

And ye Reason, tame Sentiment

and place him at the highest servant position.

Yet how can they listen

to the voice of a distant spectator.

How odd, how curious my personhood,

that I am not one but three,

and the third with no voice.

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Should I Tell Him? – “Girls don’t tell what they feel but expect guys to know it.”

I have heard many men complain about how women tend to assume that men should know what women feel and expect from them and act accordingly. It’s not a nice feeling to say that I must admit that is true. But let’s dig a little bit deeper.

I presently have a friend, a boy, half way around the world. We have affections for each other, but decided to remain friends until perhaps a day comes when we are ready for any serious relationship. I don’t know when I will see him again, if ever, but I always hoped to keep in contact and be intentional with this friendship.

It’s been three months since he left now, and we are still in contact. We Skyped just last Saturday. But things changed after that last Skype call. I don’t know his side of the story, but on my side, I don’t feel very connected to him. Our Skype conversation was replete with pauses, pondering on the next subject, and general silence. After that, I don’t think much changed in his way of messaging, or how often he got online. However he was less engaged, showing less interest in my news, and I began to doubt.

Perhaps he is not interested. Perhaps he feels bothered by my talking about daily struggles and feelings. Perhaps his affections are fading. And I don’t feel that I have the right to interrupt any fading feelings, or disturb him.

I began to be hesitant when I wrote to him. I felt that I could only talk about news, like what happened today during chapel, or the testimonies I heard from younger classmen, but not about how I feel exhausted because of a busy schedule, or how I am struggling emotionally because of the changes I must adjust to.

This boy doesn’t know about how I perceive myself as bothersome and uninteresting, how I fear that the affections will end, how I feel slightly abandoned, how he is no longer a joy but a source of burden. I shouldn’t expect him to know that. I know.

But I don’t want to tell him either, because that puts him on the spot. If I tell him, he must decide whether or not to change how he engage with me. First of all, I hate even allow him to think that it is his fault that I am hurt or afraid. That would make him feel guilty, when it really isn’t his fault. Second, I don’t want him to sacrifice his time with the people around him and the work he is given just to give me more attention. The thought makes me wince. And worst of all, I don’t want to make him feel obligated to be more attentive to me, as though my happiness is his responsibility, especially if his affections really are fading. If he truly cares less of me, I want to allow him to care less of me, rather than cling to him and make him generate feelings he doesn’t have.

On the other hand, if I do tell him, the reason would be this: If he truly cares about me but is unaware of how his lack of attention is influencing me, he would wonder why I pulled away and inevitably think that I was simply no longer interested. If he knew, and cared, he would gladly sacrifice his time and energy to reassure me, to tell me that I am not a bother but a joy. He would do anything to build my confidence in him.

And there it is. The mind processing of a woman. We certainly are complicated. And for me, this is the reason I end up hiding my feelings and turning the responsibility to guys. I never mean to, I just…do. Here is where I wish men knew what girls feel and expect, because I hate to tell them myself.

Anyway. I think I’ll tell him, because I’d rather bother him and make him think than risk losing this precious friendship.

A Journal Entry: From Self Deprecation

“Once again I am pulled down from a place of material confidence regarding my talent for writing. It does not bother me so much, however, that I am not skilled in this particular earthly element, just as I do not make a huge deal out of my cringing voice. At the very least, for now I am able to ignore them and deny it power to effect me.

It ties in very well with the trust-and-obey theme God appointed to me this season. I do not have outstanding talent; I do not have a single innate gift that surpasses those around me. I do not impress the public with my earthly ornaments. And there lies the magnificent beauty: All that is beautiful about me comes wholly from my LORD. All that is talented about me comes from my dependence on the LORD. I am thus extremely beautiful.” 2016/02/16

I wrote this some five months ago, but it deeply encouraged me today. I am once again struggling with self esteem, questioning what worth I have in this world. I searched for qualities in me that are beautiful — am I pretty? talented? skilled in any way, or even kind and loving? — but I found none according to my standards. I knew that God’s standards are the only ones that matter, and that I am valuable according to His standards, but I found myself continuously pushing away this fact and frantically searching for beauty inside me. I discovered worthlessness, sin, imperfection, and a lonely, wandering soul.

When I read this entry after feeling inclined to read my old journal, it finally clicked: I was focusing on myself and blinded to God. Finally lifting my eyes from myself, I caught a glimpse of unbearable beauty, unlimited strength, unimaginable glory. Who am I to consider myself beautiful or valuable –even if I were talented or kind — at the presence of—-God? Who am I to pompously march out unto the world when the great and awesome God walks beside me? The image of a silhouette came into my mind: a darkened, slender figure, having no visible eyes, smile, or character, completely surrounded by beams of glory, blindingly bright. That’s me. That’s you. We are only beautiful because God is beautiful, because we are darkened for His light.

Offering Dung to the Holy God

The offering of pride turned out to be a spoonful of dung. It’s an awful joke to the King of kings, Creator of the universe, the Great Wisdom and Holiness.
And yet this great God looks through the putridness of pride and finds a grain of humility. He then uses it, and makes it beautiful.
I cannot fathom.

God, the Beauty in the Beautiful

“You are everything that is beautiful” – Keep Me Near by Rend Collective

A person is beautiful. The deeper you know a person, the more beauty you discover, the more you love. Nature is beautiful. The more you linger in the green and blue, the more you sink into its depths, the more you love. Ideas are beautiful. The more you venture through the maze of thoughts, the more you are intrigued, the more you love.
But these things are beautiful because Beauty is in them, because God has taken essential part in their existence and identities.
Thus I love perhaps the person, perhaps nature, perhaps ideas; but without doubt, I love the God who manifests His beauty in them.

You gat this!…?

The marvelous truth is, it is far better that I don’t have this together, that I am incapable of handling my works, for it is then that the Almighty takes complete control, and then that I depend completely on Him. It is then that I am absolutely certain of the good that will come, for Goodness Himself is working with His hands. It is also then that I am unquestionably certain as to whom the glory belongs.
Hence in my weakness His power is more glorified.

So Sarah, you gaaat this?
nohp.
I don’t gat this.
He’s gaat this.

—-2 Corinthians 12:8-10

Focus on the Present

A runner runs. Sweat, dripping down his forehead, dampening the ears and lips, salty, hot, and cold. The runner runs. Pain, crawling up his thighs, his waist, then chest. Breathing harsh, the runner runs.

The runner has a hat. It is a strange hat. It is a wide, round one, like a flat sombrero, and has dangling objects shifting side to side every time the runner pushes out for another step. The objects – a barbie doll, a piece of chocolate cake, a model car, a diploma, a picture of a special person, and many others all around the hat, rotating every now and then, dangling with charm.

The runners eyes move. Almost mechanically, his pupils run from one end of the eyes to the other, tracing the shaking of the object directly before him. The charm before him is a picture of a road, resembling that which he is running on at present, but with different curves, different flowers, different spectacles to view. He sees unfamiliar mountains, purple and white, ditches and puddles, dirty and dark, and a field of sunflowers down the side of the road, smiling and dancing about. Oh how exciting, he thinks. I wonder just how many of these flowers I will see, how harsh the climb of that mountain will be, what adventures await, what wonders I will see!

The runner stops. His foot is wet, heavy, and stuck on a pool of mud. He takes one more glance at the charming picture, looks down and sees his foot. Pathetic. I could have avoided that, or at least had some fun with the mud, what thrill it would have been, had I glided over the shallow areas, or ran with lifted knees and thumped the mud!, he thinks.

So the runner gently removes his foot from the mud puddle, scrapes the dirt unto the dry road, and takes a breath. He looks around – a breathtaking view. The two mountains at a distant, side by side, blue, but clothed with yellowish trees, and around him, green bushes and ferns, tinted with gold of the sunlight. The sky is blindingly white, or rather, very brightly blue.

The runner remembers the adventure he is one right at this moment. The beauty, the wonders, the breathtaking moments he is missing out on!

The runner runs. He runs, slips, slides, glides, and jumps over the obstacles before him, all the while enjoying the view. Sweat, coating his arms and legs, streams down to his ankles. As he runs the wind, cold and fresh, tingles his skin, and he smiles. He breathes in. His lungs, filled with hot air, feels sweaty from the inside, but warm, and lively.

As he runs, the enchanting picture of another road lost its color. It was no longer enchanting, but rather gray, and too separate from the road he is running on now. The picture dangles loose, and then falls off. It lands on the road, unheard, unseen, forgotten. The road it depicted will someday meet the runner, but not now.