Thursday, December 31, 2009


and ready to mingle! HAH just kidding. Nuns forever.

I know I've been a staunch no-boys advocate for a while on this blog, and I just wanted to let everyone know that my stance wasn't born just out of bitterness. The main reason why I gave up on boys is because I really am so content with being single. I recently read an article on Donald Miller, and one of the paragraphs really stood out to me.

In fact, I would say this quote perfectly sums up my state of mind.

"'It's a contentment that I wish on everybody I know,' Miller continues. 'I mean, there's a lot to be sad about in my life: I'm not married; finances can go up and down; I'm 38, I'll be 40 in a couple years. There's a good chance I won't have a family. That means nothing to me. I mean, I'd love to have that stuff, but I know it won't deliver what we think it's going to deliver. So why not watch a sunset? You know what I mean?'"

Yes, Donald Miller. I think I know exactly what you mean.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Things have been very interesting lately.

I had a really great conversation with a good friend of mine last night, and she was telling me her views on spiritual gifts, especially the more "charismatic" types. She's always been skeptical about them. For me, it's so clear that spiritual warfare exists, and phenomenons like demon possession and supernatural healings do occur. My friend has a harder time believing in these things. She said that doubt has always been a thorn in her flesh.

Days like today make it easier for me to believe in stuff like spiritual warfare. Today was a bad day. I've just been feeling so attacked all day.

Members of my family are encountering some tough trials. There's also a lot of discord going on within my family, too. On top of that, I've been feeling really weird lately. Like, not well, even though I'm not sick. I get these hot flashes and pounding headaches and periods of weakness that just come on and then fade away super quickly.

And if my friend's thorn is doubt, my thorn in my flesh is meaninglessness. Somehow it always finds its way back to me, which is so frustrating and usually my biggest struggle. Since I'm a pretty passionate person, and I need purpose, meaning, and hope to feel alive. How fitting that the one thing that can stop my passion is the one thing I struggle with most. I can't see how this isn't spiritual warfare. Ugh.

Fortunately, I have God on my side. And if God is for me, who can be against me? "Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name."-Psalm 91:14

Monday, December 28, 2009


It's so weird, but now that I'm all into stocks, I find myself wishing the economy would just stay in a recession. It makes it easier to buy into stocks and make money, haha. "When others are greedy, be fearful. But when others are fearful, be greedy."-Warren Buffett.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


I've been feeling very anti-boy lately. They are just so useless! Gross.


I told Brendan that he could be excluded from grossness. Every other guy, though...totally icky.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


I love Urban Outfitters, Inc. This encapsulates Anthropologie, Free People, a couple of wholesale lines, and of course, the namesake. I love this company because of its amazing focus on marketing a lifestyle instead of just individual products. They create this whole fantasy world that is so much prettier than the real world. Take a look at their dedication to their vision! (Taken from their recently published 3rd quarter earnings.)

From Glen Senk, CEO: "While there is minimal evidence of price elasticity on compelling product, the consumer is certainly more discriminating. She expects more value for money, which in our world, doesn’t necessarily equate to a lower price -- it means she’s looking for authenticity, scarcity, freshness, compelling differentiated product and a meaningful emotional connection that’s born from a shared set of aspirations and values. I believe this emphasis on value and values plays to our strengths. It is how we ran our business before the economic reset, it is why we believe our customers shops with us, and therefore it is how we will continue to run our business in the future."

How many businesses really understand their consumers' mindsets?! Especially at Urban Outfitters' level! Love it! They know their customers so well. This is what I think sets them apart from the other retailers-their dedication to not simply knowing their product, but knowing their clients. This is why they've consistently outperformed their competition.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


Not that I've changed my sentiment at ALL about not wanting a boyfriend or dating at this moment in time, but I must mention that I've been following a couple's blog, and it's making me feel all domestic-y and cute-sy and romantic-y. I guess they make me want in the long term what they have presently.

My friend was telling me a story about how she was having a mood swing-y day, and she felt so bad about the way she treated her boyfriend, she apologized and told him that if he didn't want to be with her anymore, she understood. His response was enough to melt even this cold, anti-boy heart of mine. He said, "God brought us together, and He'll be the one to break us apart. It doesn't matter what you do or say. Until God breaks us apart, I'm staying with you."

When I hear about stuff like that, I just ask God to please send me someone who will say (and mean!) stuff like that to me. Swoon.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Wow, I am writing this in a state of AWE. God is SO good!!!

My dad often thinks of me as too much of a dreamer or idealist. He thinks I'm not down to earth enough. Therefore, he doesn't really encourage or support the things that I hold dear. So when several people suggested that I consider going on a summer project, I knew it would be a dangerous conversation to have with my dad.

But God is SO faithful and created the most perfect opportunity for me to tell my dad. Not only was he okay with it, but he actually ENCOURAGED me to go.


What?! Yes, he actually encouraged me to go. Reading that sentence is still almost too good to be true for my eyes. Dang. Praise God!

I think that's what I want to end this blog with. Praise God, praise God, praise God!

Any praises you've experienced lately? Share them with me. =]

Monday, December 14, 2009


I am so indignant right now. Ugh. I hate it when I see something that is NOT good, nor Godly, and I feel like I can't say anything about it.

Dang, I hate gossip.

Phil 4:8 "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I haven't posted a style blog in a while, so here's a dress that I'm OBSESSED with! It's by Free People, but it's sold out EVERYWHERE in a size 2. So if you come across the "Dreaming in Paradise Dress" in my size, please let me know! It looks like this:

I love EVERYTHING about this dress! The shape, design, colors, details, everything!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Today, I woke up feeling so incredibly great! It's like seeing the world through brand new eyes. I was just hit by the inordinate amount of blessings God has given me. I am so not worthy. God has been so generous to me!

And it's been a while since I've been hit by the beauty of SLO. But walking to class, I couldn't help but admire the hills and the sky and the greenery. I felt so alive and just so...ah, if I could put words to it, the closest thing that would capture how I felt today is feeling God smiling down at me. Yes, that works.

Last night, I was just hit by God's love for me. It's so...resilient, hah. And persevering. Romans 8:38-39 prove that. There is nothing, NOTHING in this world that can separate us from the love of God!

Lately fear has been governing my life, and the verse that encourages me is 1 John 4:18. "Perfect love casts out all fear." And if nothing can separate me from perfect love, than what do I have to fear? Nothing and nobody.


Wow, God is seriously blowing me away with all these promises He's fulfilling!

Let me just say, I have a love/hate relationship with English classes. I love it because it stirs up my passion for God and my beliefs, but I hate it because it has to get me really mad and frustrated before I share what's on my mind.

I took my English final today, so the past couple days have been filled with Modernist and Existentialist philosophies. I have previously stated that I hate Existentialism, but I don't think my hatred was adequately stated, so let me reiterate the fact that I HATE Existentialism. With a fiery burning passion.

Why? Because there is a lot of truth to it all. This world is meaningless, just a vanity. But Existentialism resigns itself to existing without hope. Christianity emphatically points out that hope exists because God exists. There is something bigger than ourselves. But I've been feeling super depressive and Existentialist lately. One of the tenants of modernism is the focus on self. Modernists are extremely self-centered and only do what pleases them. There is a blatant disregard for others' desires and well-being, and it makes their world so small.

After I finished studying last night, I went to go read my Bible. Leave it to God to give me exactly what I need in the form of truth. Rom 8:6-8 "Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn't pleased at being ignored." (The Message)

I realized that I had been focusing too much on myself, and how I was feeling or what I wanted. I even made God about me! God, the infinitely tender Father cares about me so much, which is everlasting truth, but I made it about me. My view of who God is just got bigger. By a lot. He is not just a loving dad, but a KING who is worthy of all glory and majesty.

I felt very little last night, as I came to these conclusions. Little, but in absolute awe of the God I serve.

Monday, December 7, 2009


Charles was a CalPoly student that I never met, only heard about. I heard that he was reported missing, and then found dead. I heard that he hung himself.

I assure you, there is much more pain in those above sentences than what is probably being portrayed right now.

As soon as my roomies and I got the news, we were shocked. Shocked and depressed. For me, it was a wake up call. There is a war going on, and people's lives and souls are at stake here. In a sense, I almost felt a burden of responsibility. I didn't know him, but if God had brought him into my life and asked me to love on him, would I have been willing to go out of my way and talk to a random person that God laid on my heart? I don't know. And that's enough to be majorly convicting.

I just can't stop picturing God pleading with Charles, the entire bike ride to Madonna, to stop. Please, don't go any further. Okay this is far enough. Go back. Stop. Please, stop! Don't do this. Charles, stop right there. I love you, don't do this. His agony is crushing to me. And then I picture the horror of the four students who found his body. And then I can't think anymore.

What would have happened if someone had seen Charles riding off campus and stopped him with a friendly greeting, and asked him how he was doing. And what if this person wasn't content to just hear "stressed, because I have this project to present." But what if this person really pursued Charles and really cared about and wanted to hear how he was really doing. I think that would have made all the difference.

Father, turn this tragedy into an opportunity. May hearts be changed.

That is the prayer I prayed when I found out about Charles. And He has already been faithful again. My heart has changed. My whole view on evangelism has changed. I've always felt comfortable with sharing my faith, but awkward, because I felt like I had an ulterior motive-to move the conversation to spiritual matters. And I felt that my thinly veiled intentions to talk with that person inhibited me from really truly caring for and loving that person well. Now, I feel no pressure to have to bring the conversation to God. Now I just want to serve my community and make each and every person I come into contact with feel loved. Because that's the heart of the Gospel, right? Love.

Not only that, but I trust the Holy Spirit is truly dwelling in me, and that I am not my own. People can't separate me from God. They can't take God out of my actions and my heart. Therefore, when I am loving someone, even though I don't feel like I'm doing anything out of the ordinary, people are taken aback and see God behind everything I do and say. They can see the Gospel in me. And that is enough. That's enough for me. God is (more than) enough for me.

Disclaimer-I'm not saying I'm going to avoid talking about God if the topic arises, just that I'm free from feeling like I have to bring God up all the time with every conversation I have with a nonbeliever.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


God has been so faithful to me. All last year and part of this quarter, I have just struggled with wanting a relationship. I can't tell you how many hours of prayer I've spent, bringing this discontent to the Lord. And now, I can finally, FINALLY say that I'm 100% satisfied with being single. Not just satisfied, but I feel so content and fulfilled. I love that I can focus on God and not on boys. I love that I can watch couples interact and not feel jealous or sad.

As some of you know, my roommate and I are on a "no boys" ban this quarter. It's been so amazing to see how the Lord has grown me through this. We were out with a mutual friend today, and she commented on how attractive a group of guys were. My roommate got excited, so I reminded her of our ban, and our friend retorted, "Just because you're on a diet doesn't mean you can't check out the menu!" After she said that, I started to realize that I don't remember the last time I thought a guy in real life was hot. It's like for me, there's not even a menu at all! I love this freedom! LOVE it! Just another reminder of how faithful God is to provide! PTL!

Saturday, December 5, 2009


My life has been a crazy roller coaster of ups and downs. Through it all, God has remained constant. I just have this image of my standing on a cliff in the eye of the storm. The ground below me is literally crumbling and falling to pieces from the pressure exerted by the wind and the rain. Clouds are swirling and moving so fast, they mirror the unleashed roar of the furious grey waves. My hair is being whipped around, but I am steady and serene and unshaken; sure of my standing with God.

Psalm 42 has been my comfort and hope this month. I just love the way the psalmist can be so honest about his suffering and confusion, and yet be so certain of God and His love for me. I feel like He and I are slow dancing, and my eyes are locked on His. As we're dancing, the background and the faces blur and fade, and I am lost in His ocean eyes. John Mark McMillian's How He Loves comes into mind. "If His grace is an ocean, we're all sinking." I think that adequately describes how I feel when our eyes are fixed on each others.

Here's the text of Psalm 42, for your enjoyment (and mine):
1-3 A white-tailed deer drinks from the creek;
I want to drink God,
deep draughts of God.
I'm thirsty for God-alive.
I wonder, "Will I ever make it—
arrive and drink in God's presence?"
I'm on a diet of tears—
tears for breakfast, tears for supper.
All day long
people knock at my door,
"Where is this God of yours?"

4 These are the things I go over and over,
emptying out the pockets of my life.
I was always at the head of the worshiping crowd,
right out in front,
Leading them all,
eager to arrive and worship,
Shouting praises, singing thanksgiving—
celebrating, all of us, God's feast!

5 Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul?
Why are you crying the blues?
Fix my eyes on God—
soon I'll be praising again.
He puts a smile on my face.
He's my God.

6-8 When my soul is in the dumps, I rehearse
everything I know of you,
From Jordan depths to Hermon heights,
including Mount Mizar.
Chaos calls to chaos,
to the tune of whitewater rapids.
Your breaking surf, your thundering breakers
crash and crush me.
Then God promises to love me all day,
sing songs all through the night!
My life is God's prayer.

9-10 Sometimes I ask God, my rock-solid God,
"Why did you let me down?
Why am I walking around in tears,
harassed by enemies?"
They're out for the kill, these
tormentors with their obscenities,
Taunting day after day,
"Where is this God of yours?"

11 Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul?
Why are you crying the blues?
Fix my eyes on God—
soon I'll be praising again.
He puts a smile on my face.
He's my God.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


That's the number of hours I spent talking to a friend last night. Amazing.

My friend and I are completely opposite. We have two totally different mindsets. That's why we like talking with each other so much. While completely aggravating at times, it's a total trip to see where he's coming from.

We talked about relationships and boys and girls and their interactions. I decided that I just need to be a relationship expert. Or something. We talked about what it means to be in a relationship and what constitutes a date and what marriage should look like. We defined "hooking up" and why we both want our future spouses to be virgins.

It's still astounding to me how we can have such fundamentally different philosophies, and yet reach the same conclusions, or at least agree on the same moral principles.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Walls don't make a home. It's kind of like how the words "I" and "love" and "you" are meaningless when strung together.

What is a home built upon? And how do you give meaning to a cliche?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Are we forever doomed to exist as little people?

Sunday, November 29, 2009


There's a giant outside and he's knocking on my door. Knock, knock, and I'm afraid the whole house will collapse. I squeeze my eyes and hope he'll give up and leave the door intact. As the knocking continues it sounds more and more muffled, so I look through the window. To my astonishment, the giant is shrinking! Smaller and smaller until I have become the giant.

What does it take to be the bigger person? Does freedom liberate or empower?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Oh my gosh, God is SO good and so faithful. Ahhh! I've been going through SUCH a stressful time, and one of the causes of my stress has been a strained relationship with a close friend. Well, after like a 2 1/2 hour conversation tonight, things have been laid bare and are out in the open. I can't even tell you what a relief it's been, even in the short while it's been since we finished the convo.

I didn't think I had the strength to go through with talking to this person. I even wrote a post entitled "A Letter I Don't Have the Courage to Send," where I just wrote out everything that came to mind that this person had done to hurt me. But somehow, God was just there with me and fulfilled His promise to give me the strength I needed to confront this person.

As hard as it was, it felt so freeing just being brutally honest with how I was doing. And I know that my brutal honesty probably definitely hurt this person, but I think it added just some scope to my pain. In essence, I'm not sorry for hurting the other person by letting them see my pain, which is something that is very unusual for me. I'm just so grateful that our friendship was spared.

AND something else I have learned is that I have amazing friends who happen to be prayer warriors! I truly believe their prayers made a huge difference!

Ahhhhhh I just have so much to think about and process and just praise God for! He is so good and worthy to be praised!!!

Thank You, Jesus for tonight!

Monday, November 23, 2009


Ever feel like God just asks way too much of you? Welcome to my world. I just feel like God is really challenging me with something. I feel like He's asking me for more than I am capable of giving.

This whole dying-to-yourself thing is way more difficult in practice than in theory. Ugh. I need discernment and direction. Now. (Please.)



God just told me that I can handle the stuff He's put into my life right now. And that I need to trust Him for the strength to get through it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Some people spend their entire lives running from themselves. Unfortunately, most people find they can never outrun themselves.

So why bother?

Saturday, November 21, 2009


In therapy yesterday, my counselor made a comment which really resounded for me. I had just gotten through talking about my feelings (of course) from the past two weeks (which have been really hard for me), and she leaned forward and said, "Sarah, this is a lot." And that comment, just the acknowledgment of how hard it's been for me, made me want to cry. I realized that I don't need a lot of accolade for my accomplishments or anything that I do. But I feel so affirmed when people recognize the effort I put forth in doing things. It doesn't need to be a big praise.

She also said the following in her assessment of me: "Sarah, something that's very interesting about you is that you have been continually hurt a lot by people you love or want love from, but you still keep on loving people. That's a very hard thing to do. Why do you do it?"

Talk about a piercing question. Why DO I do it? In my head, my Christianese answer kicks in. Because of the love God has shown me. But does my heart know that answer, too? I'm somewhat unsure.


I think I've figured out something about myself. I am happiest when I'm living in the present. That's why throughout my day, I can be so happy and certain of God's love for me.

But then night hits, and I toss and turn as I reflect on my past. I analyze and process everything that happened during the day and find connections to my deeper past to explain my emotional responses. That's when I doubt myself. That's when I'm unsure of God actually living in me, working in me.

Looking toward the future is what inspires me. I can't wait to do all the things I want to do. But the future makes me feel so impatient and almost impotent to do anything but wait for the future to come around.

Friday, November 20, 2009


I never was very good at distracting my anxious mind with something else. At the end of the night, I'm left with myself and my problems. If I can't even stand myself, how can I expect others to be around me for the countless hours I impose myself on them?

I guess what I'm saying is, at the end of the day, I'm left with me, the big issues at hand, and God. And I can't focus on God until I've worked through my problems. I've never been able to just shove the big stuff to the back of my mind. It always seems to find its way back to the front. Maybe that's a good thing. I see it as a blessing and a curse. Most nights I just want peace, but I need to stay up for another couple of hours to process through my day, to remove every obstacle between me and God.

Tonight's just one of those nights where I have too much going on in my head/heart to waste it actually sleeping.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Enticing title, I know. But this isn't going to be a tirade against the male species, nor will it be an entry devoted to pining after them, either (tempting though it may be with the premiere of New Moon and a very muscled, shirtless Taylor Lautner around the corner) . Instead, I just wanted to take the time to mention how blessed I am to be in fellowship with so many great guys who desire to grow in the Lord.

This morning, I woke up early to meet with one of my dear friends that I haven't talked to since summer. I was so encouraged just from listening to how his quarter has been, and how God has really shown His sovereignty and provision in his life. This is something that I love about my friend; he just dives in deep with minimal prodding. It was so refreshing to hear that he is longing for authentic fellowship, especially brotherhood, with the guys in his Bible study. I love his transparency and openness. And after I shared how I was doing and the stuff that's been hard for me this quarter, he took the time to really understand how I was feeling, and totally built me up and encouraged me. Every time we meet up, which is not nearly as frequent as we would like, I feel like I get a taste of what it looks like to live as brothers and sisters in Christ. Talk about a great start to my day! This is a summary of how I feel about most of the Crusade men I'm friends with. I love their hearts! Their passion for God is undeniable and real, and something I want to emulate. I feel like these men are worthy of following.

My brother turned 21 today! (Technically, yesterday, the 18th) But I love love LOVE my brother, and I miss him lots. I'm really thankful that he's in my life. He has a huge heart, and if I had to describe him in one word, I would probably say he is kind. He's also very reasonable and wise when dealing with people. His insights are pretty spot on, most of the time. Ah, I miss him!

The EPIC boys have been so great to me the past year or so. I have loved the way they have pulled me into their community and have accepted me for who I am. I feel like I have gained 20 brothers since coming to college! And of course, I must mention my bestie, who has endured endless hours of my unasked for company. He has always been a good friend to me, and I'm thankful for his friendship and support.

While John and Alex and I have not been very good at keeping in touch since we went off to school, I wouldn't be the person I am today without their unrelenting love. They will always know me and my heart better than pretty much anyone else.

Reflecting on these friendships, I'm almost overwhelmed by the sheer volume of blessings in my life! God has been so gracious to me.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


In a moment of complete openness, I am going to let everyone glimpse into my heart. I was having a really good, pretty intense conversation with a dear friend last night, and she mentioned how I don't really have any body image problems, but she knows that I have insecurities in other things. When I asked her what she thought they were, she really nailed it.

She said that my insecurities are based on the actual person that I am. I doubt whether I am, at heart, a good person, or if I am just a monster at the root of my essence. I doubt my intentions. I question if they're noble or ultimately self-seeking.

According to Christianese, I am a sinner in need of grace. Therefore, I am a horrible person. But that's not entirely what I'm referring to here.

I think I just question my own heart. Based on traumatic things that people have said to me in the past, part of me believes that I'm evil, wretched, worthless, selfish, and unconcerned with others. And the hardest part about the lie is that I know that all those traits are true of me. To deny them would be to deny my humanity. But I don't need to dwell on these negative traits. I am so much more than my sinful nature. I have meaning and value that are found in the redeeming, renewing, and healing love of my Father.

Just sometimes, I forget.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Probably the part of me that people will never really understand is my sensitivity. Even when I'm not hormonal, I'm extremely sensitive. My feelings get hurt often and easily. I've learned to daily disregard certain statements.

Maybe the misunderstandings arise from my introverted-ness. In my head, I'm stung by the comments, but I need time alone to reflect and to analyze the situation, so I can discern whether or not I'm just being too sensitive or if I legitimately have a reason to be upset. Most of the time, I'm just being too sensitive, so I have to let it go. I undergo a complete change of heart and attitude towards a person, and I extend them grace and forgiveness in my head. All the while, this person has no idea he/she has even hurt my feelings!

So for me, when I choose to love them and when I deliberately act in such a way to show them I love them, it's a sacrifice to me. It's very intentional and I know the effort it costs me. But they don't.

And here's the problem. People don't see how hard I work at loving people. They think it comes naturally. To a certain extent, it does. But there's so much more to it than just the surface (as always). So when someone tells me I should work harder at loving people in ways they'll respond to, I guess I feel like I'm already giving all I'm capable of.

But I know there's always more to give. And it's only by the grace of God that I can die to myself once more and dig deep for another bit of love to give. I guess I just wish I didn't have to dig so deep.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


Amazing how it takes 36 hours to undo 18 months of reassurance that I made the right choice to come to CalPoly.

Long story short, because of some things that people have said to me, I'm questioning my purpose on CalPoly's campus. But even more than that, I'm questioning my heart. Am I running from something? Or running to it? I'm doubting myself and my ability to love and serve people. I just feel like Biola would have been such a good fit, such an easy and natural transition.

I wish I could just sit down with God, and get things cleared up.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Jon Foreman said it perfectly: "A cynic is just someone with a broken heart."

Today, we talked about existentialism in English class.

I absolutely hate, loathe and deplore Existentialism. I'm not kidding when I say it's truly from the devil.

Existentialism is one big fat lie that is whispered to our hearts as a coping mechanism. It's a coldhearted approach to life, because we can't stand to feel the pain. And so we try to numb ourselves. But this isn't how we were created to live. This isn't how it was supposed to be.

I can't even remember the last time I dominated a class discussion this much. I felt something so strong stir in me, a desire to recognize the lie as such. An overwhelming sense of certainty and clarity. I miss that passion.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Is this what the mean when they say they "feel alive"?

Today was amazing. I felt invincible. Skipped class, called up a friend, having the urge to get out of SLO (as much as I love it here and all). We jumped in the car, picked a direction (South) and just drove and talked. When we finished our conversation, we were in El Capitan. We decided to go to Santa Barbara for dinner, and we called up a friend at UCSB. Turned out she was about to head over to someone's house for an EPIC leadership meeting, so we sat in on their meeting.

Soooo inspiring. It was such an amazing reminder of our purpose in EPIC, and so encouraging to hear what God is doing in Santa Barbara. And just seeing their hearts for the Lord and the ministry was so sweet.

God is so good. I think what I loved most about the trip was that it was a literal parallel to our lives. We both are trusting God with our lives and our futures. We don't know where we're going, but we're trusting that God will show us the way. And look-God led us from SLO with just a general direction, and He took us to a place to experience fellowship, peace, freedom, and joy. PTL! Can I get a witness?!

Monday, November 9, 2009


I think I've mentioned this before, how I don't really believe in fairy tales for myself anymore. I don't necessarily believe in the happy ending.

Some things that were brought up today made me reminisce about high school. I realized that I had such grand notions of what truly selfless love looks like. And I strove to emulate that.

Not to be a Debbie Downer, but I guess it made me take a critical look at myself and my actions today. I think over the years I've become either more cynical or more realistic. Maybe a bit of both. I don't know exactly what to feel. Should I feel sad that I no longer believe in fully sacrificial love? (Apart from Jesus, I mean) Or should I feel glad that I have come to expect less out of people and therefore be surprised more by human goodness?

Sunday, November 8, 2009


A smarter person would have put this past them by now.

Call me a fool, I guess.

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Am I just all talk?

I doubt myself so much.

I just don't know if I have the ability to really give much advice on anything at all. Especially spirituality. I don't know. Lately I've been feeling really hypocritical and blasphemous, trying to tell people about certain facets of the Christian faith. I feel like a fraud.

My relationship with God is like any other relationship in my life-it has its ups and downs. I feel like lately, things have been down. But sometimes I feel like I just have to plaster a smile on my face and talk about how amazing God's love is and how great He is and how He's been working in my life, when honestly, I feel like He hasn't been working in my life a lot lately. I know He has, but I just don't feel like it, you know?

Because to be honest with how I am really doing spiritually would mean I'd have to delve into deeper aspects of myself which aren't really ready to be shared with the entire world. There are some things you just have to keep private, right? But since I haven't figured out how much I want to share and how much I have to keep quiet, I just feel like I'm going insane trying to really talk but not talk at all. Ugh.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


That's how I feel way too often. That's probably how 99.9% of the population feels, too. I'm guilty of trivializing people's emotions all the time, so I'm not just pointing fingers at everyone else.

I wonder how different this world would look if we actually took the time to try to make people feel validated in their emotions. I think it would be a much healthier, happier place.

I realized that not only do I shove aside my emotions because people trivialize how I'm feeling when I try to articulate my thoughts, but I've learned to internally trivialize how I'm feeling because I'm so used to that response. Not healthy.

I guess I just don't know what to do with my newfound emotions.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Let Thy goodness, like a fetter bind my wandering heart to Thee.

Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it.
Prone to leave the God I love.
Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it
Seal it for thy courts above.

How often I feel this exact way! I so desire to give myself and my life over wholeheartedly to God, and when I experience moments of God's undeniable greatness, I just sit and marvel at His grace. But soon after, the spiritual high fades, and my heart gets distracted by all the other things in life that clamor for my attention. I just wish I had this fetter I could bind my heart with. I want to keep it close to my Father's heart.

Monday, November 2, 2009


Join me on my journey to self-discovery.

I started counseling today. It was a little weird at first, having someone so focused on me, but I got over that quickly. Now I'm just processing what we talked about.

I think one of the main frustrations I have in my life, is that I don't feel like I'm heard very often. I just feel very misunderstood a lot of the time. Or I feel like my inner thought processes and intents aren't translated very well to my words/actions, so people see only the outward action and misjudge it/me. And then when I try to explain why I do/say the things I do, I don't feel like people take the time (read as: care enough) to understand me.

That's all. Too many thoughts to write coherently tonight.

Friday, October 30, 2009


I saw an interesting post talking about the cost of being a girl. Similarly intrigued, I decided to make a comparable list of the beauty products/hygiene products I used. Here's her list:
Bodywash - $2.46 ($0)
Shampoo - $4.40 ($2.50)
Conditioner - $4.40 ($3.00)
Blush - $2.41 ($2.50)
Eye Shadow - $2.98 ($3.00)
Lipstick - $4.23 (0)
Toothpaste - $2.08 ($1.50)
Fem. Products - $8.96 ($9.95)
Deodorant - $5.94 ($3.00)
Contact Solution - $8.88 ($5.00)
Gel - $9.92 ($5.00)
Razors - $5.99 ($3.00)
Facewash - $7.11 ($5.00)
Foundation - $11.47 ($12.00)
Moisturizer - $19.97 (15.00)
Mascara - $7.47 ($7.50)
Under eye roller n/a ($8.00)
MONTH TOTAL - $98.59 ($85.95)

Here's mine:

Dove soap-$10.79
Eye Shadow-$28
Eye Liner-$15
Fem. Products-$11.98
Contact solution-$9.79
Shaving Gel-$3.99
Face wash-$11.49
Mascara base-$27.50
Lip primer-$14.50
Eyelash curler-$16
Lip gloss-$7.65
Makeup remover-$6.69
MONTH TOTAL – $351.83

I spend nearly 4 times the amount she does! Holy crap! Am I just ridiculously high maintenance or is she just impressively frugal?

I do want to take a little time to point out that my calculations aren't a true representation of my monthly expenses. I buy a bargain pack of Dove soap that has like 12 bars for $11. I do use organic shampoo and conditioner, which is a huge money-suck. But a lot of my makeup lasts for months, not just one month. But geez, this definitely opens my eyes to see how much I'm spending! Awareness is always the first step. Now I can focus on cutting costs and optimizing my spending. To be continued...

Thursday, October 29, 2009


What does it mean to you to be "rich"? I think it's really important to take a critical look at our goals. Of course I want to be rich. But what does "rich" look like?

For me, I define being rich as being able to afford anything I want, within reason (not, per se, a helicopter or a castle). And what I mean by being able to afford anything I want, I simply mean I want to have enough income coming in where it's not too much of a stretch to buy a luxury good, or Kitchenaids. If I am living off welfare, chances are pretty good that I probably won't be able to afford, say, a Gucci purse, for a long time. But if I'm making 60K a year, I could probably own that purse in a matter of a few months.

Being rich and able to afford whatever I want does not mean I want to be able to mindlessly spend. That's how celebrities go broke. It means I want to be able to afford to consciously spend on things I care about.

This, naturally, means I want enough money to not ever have to worry about paying for food and bills. And some smart investing. After that, the fun stuff can start. =]

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Sometimes the want for deviancy is so great, it outshouts the drone of the clinical lights above-head. It's just like how pay day never comes fast enough or how the bills never get smaller or how straight A's are never replicated again.

Like this wind that bites and invites, Orwellian philosophies wrestle and subdue my thoughts. Take a step with me, fall in line, sir. For the next 2 seconds, I will be your lady and you can be my man. But this spark of human connection is too much, too long, and we shuffle our feet and bury our heads.

Today, I was walking to class, and lost in my own iPod-powered world, I didn't notice that I had fallen into stride with a random guy walking next to me. When I finally realized that, I became uncomfortable with the human connection being made, so I sped up and broke the connection. I wondered why I felt so disquieted by the interaction so I just let my thoughts go.


Time capsule. I've been looking over some old writings that I've never posted publicly before. Here's something I wrote during the spring of my senior year. I called it Moments and Songs.

We get stuck in moments sometimes. When you're the one living life and in the moment, you are unaware of the bigger picture a lot of the time. And those times when you do step back and look objectively, you can watch others living in their moments, and their moments look actually to be songs. For one shining, soaring moment, you realize you are in a song, too. And then the moment catches you and the exhilaration of being alive flees and you are left, stuck in your own moment.

Take from it what you will.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I read this last night in my devotions. "How will we have the type of love that 'is not provoked, [and] thinks no evil'? (1 Cor 13:4-5) The only way is by allowing nothing of the old life to remain, and by having only simple, perfect trust in God-such a trust that we no longer want God's blessings, but only want God Himself. Have we come to the point where God can withdraw His blessings from us without our trust in Him being affected? Once we truly see God at work, we will never be concerned again about the things that happen because we are actually trusting in our Father in heaven."

How challenging! Can I honestly state that I solely want God, and not His blessings? That it wouldn't matter if I was happy or miserable, rich or poor, alone or in community, so long as I have God? If I can't answer yes, then have I truly seen God at work in my life? How much do I really trust my Father?

Sunday, October 25, 2009


I am simply in awe of God right now. My wonderful discipler recently challenged me to do something that would really stretch me. I was on the fence about it for a while, but I finally asked to meet up with someone and had a really good talk, where we were both super open and vulnerable with one another. It was hard, and I was anxious leading up to it, but I'm sooo glad I decided to do it.

The reason why we met up is something I can't divulge, but I had intended it to be a time for me to just share my heart with her, so she could gain some insight into her own life based on the parallels. Not knowing if anything would be taken to heart, I was simply excited that I actually had the courage to meet up with her and talk to her at all. I had thought that God wanted me to talk to her, but I still wasn't sure until my discipler and I met up again this weekend. Here's where it gets crazy.

The girl I met with shares my discipler with me. My discipler recounted what happened during their discipleship session. Apparently, after me and this girl had talked, she had gone home and made a list of things someone had done to hurt and wrong her, and how she felt about each thing. Then she made a list of all the things she had done to hurt and wrong this person in retaliation, and she shared her feelings about these instances, too. And finally, she made a list of qualities she desired their relationship to have, and the reconciliation she deeply wanted with this person.

I felt so shocked when I heard about this complete change of heart that this girl had! The only thing I could think was just, praise God, praise God, praise God! He's totally working in her heart, and even used me, little old me, to bring about that change! I felt so honored and unworthy to be included in this story. All praise be to God. He's constantly rescuing us out of the darkness of our own hearts.


Friday, October 23, 2009


Maybe my approach to frugality is backwards. Usually, when I want to buy something online, I start the checkout process and then I go and look to see if there's a coupon available for the merchant. If not, I shrug my shoulders and buy it anyways. A coupon is just a bonus. A better approach would be for me to know what I want and wait for a coupon or sale to pop up.

I decided to be more responsible and intentional with my indulgences. Take a look:

I made a want list of all the things I want to purchase. Then, I prioritized them. I'm selling some stuff on eBay and, using this fee calculator, am figuring out how much I'm making after eBay and Paypal fees. The profit gets transferred to my high yield savings account where I've opened a sub-savings account titled after the thing I want. For instance, I have a sub-savings account for the Rosie jeans I posted a couple days ago. Currently, I have about $40 set aside for it. I just have to sell about 3 more items to be able to purchase those jeans! When I've reached my goal, I can withdraw that money guilt-free and close that sub-savings account. Even better is that by the time I've made enough money to afford them, I've also had time to think about whether or not the purchase is worth it, and I'll have waited and searched for a sale/coupon.

While it varies from person to person, we each have something that we find worth splurging on. For me, nice pairs of jeans that actually fit me are worth it. And I've wanted this pair for over a month. And I've tried it on, so I know that it fits me, and I like the feel of the denim. So that's why I've decided that regardless of available coupons, I'm still gonna buy them.

It seems that I haven't changed much from the beginning paragraph, but the point is, there's intent to my spending. I'm not just mindlessly spending. I've made a deliberate choice to buy those jeans, even if I can't find a better deal.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Finally, a breakthrough. I am so stubborn that it never ceases to amaze me that insights break through this thick skull of mine at all.

But after constantly questioning myself-my heart and intentions, I have finally realized that it is not about me and where my heart is, it is about God, and where His heart is. How typical-of course I check myself to see what I'm doing or not doing, but I don't bother to look up and see what God is doing.

I realized this only after weeks of soul-searching, endless "heart checks," and self-examination. Focusing on myself, naturally, leads to negativity. Guilt and shame, my unrelenting companions. But when I place the focus onto the Lord, "all of a sudden, I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory" as John Mark McMillian puts it.

I fully believe that God doesn't want us to dwell in our shame and misery. Yes, He uses them to bring us back to Him, but He doesn't enjoy the process any more than we do.

I want my heart to be aligned with the Father's. How could I have been so blinded? If I want to know the Father's heart, of course I should look at my own. Sarcasm.

It is always about God. Always, always, always. And yet, how often I forget this simplest truth! Thank God that God is abounding grace.


Okay, okay, so maybe I was too hasty when I bashed on CD's. Don't get me wrong; I still hate CD's and I think they're an especially stupid use of money in this society, which is on the verge of ridiculously high inflation rates. BUT, as I was reading the best personal finance book ever, aka Ramit Sethi's I Will Teach You To Be Rich, he pointed out that it makes sense that as you and your nest egg age, your investing philosophy switches from risky, aggressive growth to simply maintaining current wealth. Therefore, the richer you are, the safer you tend to be. Right now, since I'm just a whippersnapper, it's good that I'm pretty much allocating all my assets in stocks (via index funds). By the time I get to 30, I can reallocate my investments to include "safer" stuff like bonds and maybe even CD's. (Well, maybe if inflation rates stabilize, or banks start offering higher interest rates, neither of which seems very plausible.)

In other news...I decided I want to be a financial adviser when I grow up. That's all. =]

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


It's official. I'm off boys for an indefinite amount of time. So to all my boy friends: sorry, but I'm kickin' it with the ladies for a while.

Monday, October 19, 2009



Frankie B Skinny Rosie in Slick, $182

Love. I tried them on in 23 and 24, and though the 23's were snug, they fit my (lack of a) booty well. The 24's were just way too saggy. I've been seeing them a lot in Smoke, the grey wash, but I'm partial to dark denim. I think this will be my next purchase.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


I think that as girls, we are all addicted to love stories. We all just want a man. So when my boy-crazy friend decided to give up boys for the year, I was instantly excited. So far, it's been really interesting. I've had to call her out when she's been facebook-stalking cute guys, or oogling over attractive males around campus. Hah, love it.

But the point here is that we need to be each others' supporters. If the Lord has called us into a time of singleness, we should embrace it and band together to fight off feelings of wanting a relationship. Not to say that we can't ever be in relationships, but just that we spend so much of our single time in life wishing we weren't single. All that negativity is draining and pointless. We should encourage each other to not just be okay with being single, but help each other learn about the amazing aspects of singlehood.

Saturday, October 17, 2009


Ugh. I have been just so negative lately. I feel like a general lack of faith in humanity tends to just put a negative spin on things.

Anyways, during women's time, we talked about the usual womanly stuff-you know, the questions every girl has: am I pretty? Am I lovely? Am I worthy of being loved? Will someone desire me, fight for me, protect me and love me? And then we talked about the lies women believe. Then a panel of 4 really great Crusade staff men came up to answer our questions.

I know they were meaning to help us, but I just felt really discouraged after women's time. I felt like their wives/girlfriends they were describing were all this singular, one type of girl. And I felt like I wasn't going to find a Godly man unless I was like that type of girl-the sweet, innocent, domestic girl. I guess I just felt like I was being told I would have to change to become worthy of a Godly man.

This, as you know, is not how God's love works.

Even worse, recently, I feel like I've been able to return to the sustenance of God's love. I've felt content in my singleness, and haven't been really wanting a boyfriend. I just love when I am content in my current situation in life, and honestly, I think that's a place that God is really pleased with. Singleness is only for a season (God willing), and there are so many benefits of serving the Lord when you're single that you don't have when you're in a relationship/married. But listening to this women's talk just made the desire for a husband/relationship come back. So frustrating. I just want to be free of these distractions. I want to love God purely.


Do you ever just wish that God could be more efficient instead of just sufficient? I mean, I know His timing is perfect and all, but I just wish that He could work things out a little faster, or bring me to a place of understanding more quickly.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


I'm reading what I affectionately refer to as The Sheep Book, for one of my bible studies, and this week's chapter looks at the line in Psalm 23 "He makes me lie down in green pastures." The cool thing about the book is that it's written by a former shepherd and a pastor, so he offers really great insights into the heart of the relationship between sheep and their shepherd.

The tenderness with which the shepherd beholds his sheep with is surprisingly intimate and self-sacrificially beautiful. There are four things that the sheep must be free of before they will lie down. These are the following: freedom of hunger, freedom of insects and pests, freedom of flock tensions, and freedom of fear of attack. While he drew multiple parallels between the plagues of the sheep and the plagues of mankind, the overarching thread was that the presence of the Shepherd comforted the sheep so much, that tensions dissipated, fear was quelled, and dwelling in the Good Shepherd's care meant that no insects "bugged" (hah) the flock, and they were never without food.

And that's the bottom line through and through-the presence of the Father is all that we need in this life. His presence is where we draw comfort from. His presence is what sustains us.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


While reading through my daily devotions, My Utmost For His Highest, I came across a devotional that spoke to me so deeply, it felt like a reverberating gong striking me to the core. No, really.

The past few days, I've been feeling really disconnected from God. All of a sudden, He wasn't the first thing on my mind each day, and He wasn't the last thing I thought about before I fell asleep each night. I felt without His presence, and honestly, it's been hard. Even worse, during the summer, if I ever felt far from the Lord, it would be like torture-I couldn't go on until I had buried myself in the Father's heart. But this time, I just felt...nothing. Like it didn't matter. Apathetic. This is arguably worse. Day after day, my prayer has been, Lord, I can't feel You, but I miss You and I ask that You'd reveal Yourself to me. And nothing.

So as I was reading the entry for October 9, I was already enraptured by the title, "How Will I Know?" Chambers writes, "All of God's revealed truths are sealed until they are opened to us through obedience. You will never open them through philosophy or thinking. But once you obey, a flash of light comes immediately. Let God's truth work into you by immersing yourself in it, not by worrying into it. The only way you can get to know the truth of God is to stop trying to find out and by being born again. If you obey God in the first thing He shows you, then He instantly opens up the next truth to you. You could read volumes on the work of the Holy Spirit (so pointed-that's totally what I've been doing), when five minutes of total, uncompromising obedience would make things as clear as sunlight...Yet God will never reveal more truth about Himself to you, until you have obeyed what you know already."

SO good, right?! Oh man. And so, after weeks of knowing what I "should" do and blatantly ignoring it, I have finally decided to obey. I thought it would be hard, and in a way, it was kinda tough, but I feel so much more myself now. I feel so much more balanced and not on the edge of craziness. Amazing what even just a little act of obedience can do. I feel like the barrier I put between me and God is disappearing, and it is so sweet to slowly but surely feel the warmth of the Father returning to my chest. Mmm.


I never wanted to be "cute." I don't consider myself a "cute" girl. Just because I am petite doesn't mean I am cute, or, God forbid, "cutesy."

A friend of mine categorizes girls into three types: cute, beautiful, and hot/sexy. While his organizational system is a great target for incessant teasing, I personally wonder what signifies which category girls should align themselves with.

I, for one, don't place myself in any of these categories. I think of myself as just Sarah, but if I were to slap on a label for myself, I would strive for "pretty." This is seen in the way that I keep myself-my personal style and grooming habits. And yet, a lot of people (supposedly) view me as "high maintenance" which couldn't be further from the truth. All this to say, "pretty," "cute," "beautiful," "sexy," and other such labels are total crap.

I view myself as just Sarah, and I like it that way. I think it's healthy. I think if people were to view me as I view myself, I would be satisfied.

Saturday, October 10, 2009


I once heard a story about a young girl, so deeply beloved by her dad, that he gave her a pouch of pearls. The girl loved and cherished her pearls so much, every night when her dad came in to tuck her in, she would always look at her pearls and thank her daddy for them. One night, her dad came in and asked for the pearls back. Upset and offended, she refused and cried. Night after night, her dad would come in and ask for her to give up the pearls to him. And night after night, she would refuse. Finally, one night her dad came in and asked for the pearls again. He told her to trust him. Broken, she threw the pouch of pearls at his feet, where they scattered. "Fine! Take them!" she sobbed, through her anger and hurt.

Her dad quietly picked up the pearls, kissed her wet cheeks, and said goodnight. The next night, her dad came back in, took her hands in his, and said, "Sweetie, I'm so glad that you gave me back the pearls, because now I can give you these." And he placed a beautiful, perfect, brilliant diamond in her palm.

I split up the story on purpose. I feel like I am in the middle of the two parts of the story. I wonder, am I clinging on to pearls when I could be holding a diamond? Even worse, am I missing the sustaining love offered by my Daddy's omnipresence?

Or is my part in the story earlier? Have I even messily surrendered my pearls yet? I don't even know where my heart is in all this.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Haven't posted a frivolous blog in a while. I've been on an Anthropologie hiatus, due to my newly discovered passion for personal finance. This has made me correspondingly more responsible with my money, which means no mindless shopping. But today, I thought I would peruse the website to absorb some inspiration.

The Central Coast has been so cold this fall, (and by cold, I mean below 80 degrees) so I headed right on over to the Coats and Jackets section. I was intrigued by the capes and cape inspired jackets they featured. Here are a few of my favorite finds:

The Boucle Cape $148

So cute, right? Number one on my wishlist.

Checkered, Please Jacket $178

The cape inspired silhouette and the oversize hounds tooth print accented by a cozy hood? Perfection. Love love love.

Anka Jacket $118

Half sweater, half jacket with a loosely interpreted cape closure, this jacket is calling my name this season.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


The question I've been dealing with is just....where's my heart? Where's my heart right now? Do I need a heart check? I mean, obviously I do, because otherwise, I wouldn't be feeling so weird right now. But what have I given my heart to that is preventing me from experiencing God's love, and letting that love be enough for me?

Perhaps it's pride. I want so badly to be in control of my mind, of my heart, and my emotions. Things are fine so long as I'm the one calling the shots, but as soon as it looks like I've relinquished control to someone else, I freak out.

Or maybe it's just my humanity driving me. My wants drown out my needs. But my needs can't be ignored for long. I feel like I just need to be reminded of who I am; where I've come from and where I derive identity from.

So what am I running toward? Or what am I running from?


I realize that people drink. And I acknowledge that there is nothing inherently wrong with drinking. In fact, I'm a pretty lenient conservative Christian when it comes to alcohol. But as I was talking with Bestie and my other friend who was there for his birthday night out, I was kinda hit by sadness. That night seemed so...unglorifying to God. As Christians, those who bear Christ's name, are we striving to emulate our namesake in everything we say and do? And yeah, Jesus's first miracle was turning water into wine, I get it. But just because something is permissible doesn't necessarily mean that it's beneficial.

It made me sad to hear how Bestie couldn't remember most of the night-things my friend was telling him happened or even things he had done, he had little to no recollection of. He couldn't walk straight and ended up throwing up. Now I love my bestie, and it sucks hearing about his rough night. I wish he wouldn't do that to himself a) because I care about him and I don't like hearing about him being out of his own control and b) because he is a Christian, proclaiming the name of Christ and not doing too good of a job representing Him and c) because he doesn't even realize that it's not inherently wrong. I've talked with him before about his attitude toward drinking, but we agreed to disagree (reluctantly on my part).

So here's my question. Is drunkenness in and of itself wrong?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Rant time.

I have never seen a shooting star! And I want to so badly!!! Ahhhh. For some reason, I ALWAYS miss shooting stars. I'll be staring at the sky for the longest time, determined to see one, and as soon as I look away, someone inevitably exclaims, "OMG! A shooting star!!!!" And I always, always, always miss it. So sad, I know. =[

Meteor showers? I always either sleep through them or, like what happened this summer, the fog rolls in and I can't see anything! Tragic.


I wrote this blog a few days ago. Tonight, I went to a bonfire and saw my first shooting star! It totally negated this blog, but since I had finished writing it, I didn't want my written efforts to go to waste. So here it is, documented proof that I have finally seen a shooting star!

It was amazing.

Oh and no, I didn't make a wish. In my excitement, I totally forgot. So sad! =[


Today was a great, albeit long day. Today was my bestie's 22nd birthday, and after we pried his hungover booty out of bed and into gear, we had breakfast burritos. We gave him a card, a present, and a batman balloon, because we wanted him to think that was all we had in store for him. He believed us. Silly Bestie.

After class, we sneaked into his room and began decorating. We pulled out all the stops-the room looks great! We had been planning this day for, literally, a month. Tons of planning and time went into this. We eagerly waited for him to come home so he could see his transformed room. And when he finally opened his door, his face was pretty much the best thing ever. It was definitely worth all the effort to make him happy.

It kinda made me draw a parallel to God, and how He put so much work and creativity into making this world, all for the briefest of moments when we humans see a shooting star, or a watercolor sunset and worship Him in response. Those flickers of glory and awe are the equivalent to Bestie's face when he opens the door to his surprise. And God finds those moments so worth all the time He put into creating everything, just for those brief moments of intimacy and clarity with us. How cool is that?

And what's even cooler is that...I mean, I knew Bestie would love whatever we did for him. But that didn't detract from my excitement for the moment when he would see everything. Likewise, God knows the moments where we'll be breath-taken by His majesty, and yet He looks forward to it just the same.

Monday, October 5, 2009


Question. If we are to give our hearts fully to the Lord; if we are supposed to be completely devoted to God alone, if He is where we are to find our identity, self-worth, and joy, then how are we supposed to give our hearts to human relationships? Friendships and romantic relationships. How, in a marriage, are you supposed to balance loving God wholeheartedly and yet loving your spouse selflessly and wholly as well? God can't be asking us to split our hearts, if he commands us to love Him with all of our heart, mind, and soul.

The Christianese answer? When we love God fully, we experience God's love for us which overflows into our relationships. We love others with an overflow. Makes sense, but how does that look in non-philosophical terms? In every day reality, what does it look like to love Christ wholeheartedly but also love a spouse intimately and the way God designed marital love to look like?

Can anyone explain?

Sunday, October 4, 2009


I've been catching up on some personal finance reading lately. After reading Pocketmint's series on how credit cards are changing, I find myself getting really frustrated with the current banking system.

I just opened my first credit card a couple weeks ago, and I made my first purchase on it about 3 days ago. I opened it simply to build up my credit score, but how are credit scores calculated anyway? I feel like it's such a volatile, unscientific estimation of what kind of debtor you'll be. First of all, no one freakin' understands how credit scores are calculated anyway! And if you read through Pocketmint's credit card series, you'll see how Orwellian the whole system seems anyways. But so many important life necessities are based on the stupid score, so even if your credit score is inaccurately low, you can't qualify for the best rates on mortgages or other loans.

I propose an overhaul of the credit score. A simplification, if you will, based on paying your bill every month in full. Wouldn't that make so much more sense?! Geez.


I was talking to a very wise friend about baptism. He was sharing his questions and insights with me. One insight in particular struck me. When Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, Matthew 3:17 recounts a voice from Heaven declaring, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." (NIV)

Up until this point, what had Jesus done for God (ministry-wise)? Nothing. He got baptized before entering into public ministry. What does this teach the rest of us? That God is pleased with us, as we are. We don't have to do anything, and He already delights in us, His children.

I'm re-reading The Furious Longing of God by Brennan Manning, and I just love his references to Song of Songs. I am His beloved, and His desire is for me.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Because of my body issues lately, I've been really scared. I don't know what's going on with my body and it freaks me out. I've lost weight, and for weighing barely more than 100 pounds, losing any weight, no matter how little, is not good. =[

I've turned to a few of my friends who are nutrition majors for advice. I've also turned to one of my close friends, who's a Bio major and whose dad is a doctor. As he was explaining to me what his best guess was, I realized that I trusted him implicitly. I would have believed anything he said. It was almost scary realizing how much I trusted him.

And it struck me-why can't I trust God that implicitly? The God who created me, who called me to follow and love Him, who has a plan for my life, is inherently good, and is a thousand times more accredited to tell me what's going on with my body than any earthly doctor. Why can I not trust Him? Is it because I can't hear His voice? Or is it because I'm choosing not to listen?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Never did I think I would get to the point where I had to plan out when and what to eat. I never thought I would one day have to force myself to eat.

I don't know what's going on with my body-but I SWEAR I am not anorexic; I do NOT have an eating disorder. I have a healthy and positive self-image, and I am not overly concerned with my weight. And yet, the past few days have been horrible. I've been shakey and lightheaded, slightly nauseous and weak. And it's all because I haven't been eating, really. My body needs more calories than I'm letting in.

But when I try to eat, I just...I can't do it. It took me over an hour to eat 3/4 of a banana yesterday. The smell of food makes my stomach turn-I want to gag.

I think part of the reason why this came about is because when I'm with people, or when I'm just busy, I have little regard for my body. I am so afraid of inconveniencing people around me, that I just tell my stomach to suck it up and wait it out. And then by the time I get home, it's too late for me to just go and make something to eat, because it's not healthy to eat late at night, right? And then I don't eat breakfast in the morning, because I'm too "busy." So basically, I eat two meals a day, but my stomach has shrunk since summer, so I can barely force down anything during lunch and dinner.

I need to start making time for me. Last night, I wrote out what I was going to eat for breakfast and stuck it on my laptop. It sucks, knowing I have to actually plan what I'm going to eat, but hopefully this strategy will keep me strong and healthy.

Sigh. So sad.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Congratulate me. I just posted my 200th blog on myspace, my original blog. Actually, that's a lie. I started blogging on xanga before myspace, but myspace is where I feel I hit my writing stride.

I also have 198 blog comments. I'm just barely outpacing my blog commentors. So sad! If you're reading this, and you read my myspace blog, please leave me a comment! (Actually, just 2 is all I need to feel satisfied, hah.) Actually, the reason for that is, in my opinion, due to the fact that I post a lot of private blogs. Sorry guys, but sometimes I have to keep my honesty to myself.

I also have about 9,000 blog views! Amazing, huh? And kinda creepy...but still cool.


Read this.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


I was having dinner with a friend, and he mentioned how withdrawing money from the ATM when you don't have an income is probably the worst feeling ever.

I totally agree. Ugh. Getting used to bi-monthly deposits into my checking account and watching the amount accrue has probably been one of the most rewarding moments of my short life, hah. I think I'm addicted-I love making money.

It's unfortunate that life costs soooooo much. As much as I love saving money, I love spending it, too. Sometimes you just can't escape costs-I was frantically trying to run around getting units, and after I added a class last-minute, I had to buy the book for it. Also, I was planning on borrowing my friend's book for another class of mine. Unfortunately, our teacher decided to update the curriculum with a new textbook (different publisher, etc, not just a revised edition) and so I ended up buying two textbooks brand spankin' new from Amazon with rush shipping. Goodbye, $300. So sad.

On the less-necessary side of expenditures, as it's the first few weeks of school, I've been buying a lot of things in bulk that will last for a while, but the up-front cost means this month's budget is kaput, pretty much. And, I've been eating out for like, every meal. So bad, I know. That's an area that I really need to work on. My friend suggested planning out a weekly menu and then going grocery shopping for each meal weekly. Once I get my lazy booty cracking on that, hopefully I can watch my food budget diminish.

Or. I just need to find a job.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


No, really, I kinda am. Hah. I've been recognizing the Holy Spirit moving in me. It wasn't until very recently that I realized not everyone understood things as acutely or as completely as I do. I seriously thought it was just normal to "feel" what other people are thinking. Not speaking...thinking. I know what they're thinking, but it's not like their head turns into an open book that I'm reading. The knowledge comes in the form of a feeling. Like a total package of their feelings that's been emptied onto me, and I see what they're thinking, feeling, and the reason behind it.

Sometimes, I also have deep feelings for what will happen in the future, before they come true.

Not only that, but in certain cases, I feel so drawn to someone, I start to know what they're doing, what they're going to say, and where they're going to be. Last quarter, there was someone I was really drawn to/burdened for, and some days I would wake up knowing I was going to run into that person.

Sorry if this sounds super creepy. It kinda does, haha. But now that I've recently gotten in touch with the charismatic inside of me, I'm learning to recognize acts of the Holy Spirit. I seriously thought these things were normal; that these "feelings" happened to everyone.

I take it as confirmation of God dwelling in me. It's pretty reassuring. Now I just need to make sure I'm not bragging about it. Oh, I am so prone to pride. Help me, Jesus.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


It's been a long time since I've fantasized about a fairy tale. I'm talking full on, everything-works-out-so-perfectly-it-must-have-been-staged-or-written-by-Disney fairy tales.

I feel so cynical nowadays. I believe that fairy tales happen, but I also believe in hard work in relationships. Love is a choice, not simply a feeling. It's also more powerful as a choice. But I question if my cynicism has crushed hope.

I feel like I am outside of the castle moat. I feel like I will never have my happy ending. I feel more like the ugly stepsister than Cinderella.

My poor future husband. He's going to have to make me believe I'm living out my happy ending with him.


Lately, there's been a lot of relationship drama around me. Not necessarily drama, because I feel like people are handling things maturely, but there's a lot of hurt flying around right now.

Today, I had a one on one with a dear friend of mine. She expressed that she was feeling sad, like her heart was just stuck and tight, like tears were stuck in her chest, waiting to come out but locked within. I told her I wish I could say something to make the sadness go away, but I could only offer understanding that I've been there, too. I told her that we just have to let emotions run their course. I directed her to pour it all out to God, because it's best to be honest about how we feel.

But as I was telling her to give it up to the Lord, I realized that the Church today glamorizes quiet times, implying that if we only give God an hour or two of our focused attention, we'll automatically feel better. God is not necessarily logical. There have been so many times when I've felt just defeated; totally at the edge of myself. I've given myself and my emotions up in earnest, heartfelt prayer, and not felt fulfilled when I'm done praying. Sometimes, I even feel worse afterward. Just because we decide to give up ourselves doesn't mean He's going to make us feel better because of our faithfulness. At least, not immediately.

But that's where faith comes in, right? We trust that although we are blind, God is leading us out of the valleys, up to the mountaintops. As long as we trust that God is good, those moments of despair, of crushed hope and devastated spirits, become okay.

I listened to John Mark McMillian's How He Loves again today. The first two lines go, "He is jealous for me/Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree." I think when we consider God's intense, all-consuming love for us, pain makes more sense. He loves us so much, and when we twist his blessings into a cursed idol, God can't bear being apart from us, so He rips that idol away.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


I had a conversation with a dear friend earlier this evening. I was trying to verbalize some mixed feelings I was having about my role in ministry. As I was trying to clarify what I felt, I ended up describing to her what my ultimate desire is, for whatever God has gifted and called me to do.

I want my body to be a big glass box. Follow me, here. I desire to be made of pure, Windex-shiny glass with a light inside of me that is radiating brilliance in all directions out of me. I want everyone to look at me and only see God. I want to be transparent, completely see-through. I want myself out of the picture; I want no glory. I want every action, every thought, every word to reflect the inner light I have.

Her response was reassuring for me. Basically, I was on the fence about having a title in ministry because I felt it would be good for me to focus my passion on something specific, but I was so afraid I would make it about myself and my pride. My friend explained that because of my desire to glorify God, I was already glorifying God because I was seeking after His heart. It's pretty cool to think about; I liked her spin on it. Just the desire to glorify God is in and of itself, glorifying Him.

Friday, September 11, 2009


I'm a few days behind in posting. Having your laptop crap out on you does that. Not that I'm equating my laptop to crap, because i <3 my macbook. =] Fortunately, everything got fixed so I'm back up and running.

I've spent the past few days at home, thoroughly enjoying waking up late, using internet past midnight, hanging out with friends I haven't seen since spring break/Christmas. And, of course, Asian food! Ahhh, bliss. My parents took me out for seafood dinners not once but TWICE this week!

I just finished loading the car, and I'm leaving for SLO in an hour or so! Woohoo! I can't wait to get back to Poly. I'm itching to see everyone!

Monday, September 7, 2009


My friend posted a link on facebook. It was a blog entry that Jaeson Ma wrote, chronicling the spirit of revival that fell on UCLA in 2006.

Such an inspiring article!

It got me thinking, though. He mentions being led by the spirit multiple times. It makes me wonder why, in modern Americanized Christianity, mention of the Holy Spirit is pretty much limited to studies and sermons on the book of Acts. Why is that? We totally limit or underemphasis the power of the Holy Spirit. And yet it is through this divine spirit that God's power can be made known to us and through us. So why is there so little spoken about it?

This year, I want to learn more about the Holy Spirit.

Sunday, September 6, 2009


What, you may ask, determines a bestie? A bestie, by definition, is someone of the opposite sex who is your best friend. We all have one!

My bestie? I have multiple, but this entry, in particular is devoted to a certain one I affectionately refer to as Cougar. When I was thinking up what to write about for the day's blog entry, I asked him for help. I was debating writing something about my preference for bottled water and my rationalizations behind the economical and ecological repercussions. He nixed it, saying it only seemed "moderately entertaining." When pressed for a more entertaining topic, he stalled, and I came up with the brilliant idea of writing about him! So, bestie, this one's for you.

Top 10 Reasons Why My Bestie Is Better Than Yours (with help from a mutual friend who shares my bestie with me)
1. He helps us understand the phenomenon which is known as a man crush/bromance (if you're wondering, his bromance is with his golf coach).
2. Provides endless hours of free entertainment from his sarcastic wit and unparalleled eyebrow raises
3. Provides even more entertainment from his delightful quotes, usually heightened by slight inebriation ("It's because I'm an ISTJ.")
4. Although he gets confused with clockwise and counterclockwise, he can tell left from right, sometimes, if his watch is flat and facing up, not down (what?)
5. He offers educational entertainment as well, doubling as a nature guide whilst walking through forests ("This is where Frodo Baggins lives.")
6. He takes us to cool places, like Pismo Beach and the zoo!
7. He can roll his R's
8. He enjoys playing with his sister's pet chinchilla, even when it is "fussy"
9. Provides everyone with free pork from his manly hunting hobby
10. He genuinely cares about and listens to us while maintaining his "bankroll" in several online poker sit and go tournaments.

And there you have it, folks! I love my bestie!

Saturday, September 5, 2009


I've been looking around at different investment options lately. It frustrates me that CD's are seen as "safe" investments! Um, newsflash: there's a risk in everything you do with your money! If the interest rate on your cd is less than the inflation rate for the time period, you've just lost money! To be precise, you're losing value on your money. Inflation is the devaluation of your money. While the monetary amount does increase, the actual purchasing power of your money decreases.

Especially now, as the American dollar is poised to plummet into practically worthlessness, opening up CD's to store your money while the economy "turns around" seems like an extremely stupid thing to do. Inflation is going to outpace your rate of interest.

My solution? Invest in mutual funds and stocks, and then hold on tight, because you're hopping on a roller coaster. Wait it out (think long term, not short) and you'll be able to not just match inflation, but earn money, too.

Friday, September 4, 2009


Last night, I was lying in bed contemplating all the regular stuff-you know, reflecting on how my day went, if I would have done anything differently, the meaning of life, all the light stuff. I got to thinking about the absurdity of sin. Sin, as defined by a humanly act that is displeasing to God, causes separation from God. If God is life, then to separate from God is to go in the opposite direction of life, which is death.

We knowingly condemn ourselves to death.

Every single time we lie, we die.

Imagine you are a defendant in a murder trial. You have all the evidence stacked against you, and even worse, you really did kill someone, and aren't even remorseful! The judge, being a good and fair judge, condemns you to death for death. It's easy to pick a more extreme case and say, "Well I'm not that bad; I've never killed someone." But you have certainly told a lie, and the hard part to wrap our infinitesimal brains around is that the act of lying is essentially the same as murder. Both are displeasing to God. If God is our judge, He has every right to try us every time we lie, and even more right to condemn us to death.

But as C.S. Lewis writes in his excellent The Great Divorce, it is we who do the condemning, not God. It is we who gleefully smirk at the seeming joy of doing that which our Lord finds vile. And He heartbreakingly allows us to do what we like.

When we understand free will (not that I'm saying I fully do, and probably won't ever), we can better understand and gain scope of the price it costs to save us, to save me. In every single courtroom trial, your defense lawyer insists on taking the sentence. And every time we lie, hate, steal, lust, kill, we are brought to another trial in which our D.A. agrees to serving another life sentence for our actions.


Thursday, September 3, 2009


Yes, I realize how omnipresent this potent little berry is. The acai berry (pronounced ah-sigh-ee) has been increasingly popular in the US over the past few years (thank you, Oprah). Imported from Brazil in smoothie mix form, acai has tons of antioxidant properties.

The reason why I'm talking about it? Because today, I went to Cafe Brasil in Santa Cruz and ordered their acai bowl-the perfect antidote for a 100 degrees, blisteringly hot day.

It looked something like this:


The acai bowl features the acai smoothie mixed with apple juice and ice, with a thick layer of the most amazing vanilla almond granola (organic, of course-this is Santa Cruz, people), and artfully topped with sliced strawberries and bananas.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009


I love personality tests. Love em. But this is the first type of personality test I've taken that relies on visual profiling! Take it for yourself and see what I mean!

I really love this innovative personality test. My result was "Sofisticat."

"You're stylish with a strong sense of design (true) and a taste for the finer things in life (oxymoronic because I love simplicity too). You're culturally curious (somewhat), enjoy rich experiences (more like rich conversations), and love to be pampered (eh, i don't like the focus to be on me). Passionate and enthusiastic (spot on), you like to share your love of the world around you. For kicks, nothing beats good times with your best friends in the world (so true). You are caring and generous and love to be spoiled a bit from time to time too (yup). You really value your quiet time (really value may be an understatement-it's more like I need it to breathe)-to recharge and reconnect with yourself. You're not afraid to take yourself away from the crowd to explore your imagination alone (I am quite the loner). Spirituality is an important part of your life (again, gross understatement). You appreciate the inner strength and peace of mind that comes from achieving personal acceptance and understanding. When it comes to art, you appreciate precision and hard work (I love attention to details so much!). Nothing is more impressive than real craftsmanship (I agree)."

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


I am slightly obsessed with the idea of hanging lanterns for light. Since pictures are said to be worth a thousand words, I'm going to give you 3,000.

From Anthropologie's May catalog.

The Cathedral Lantern from Anthropologie $58

Tea Bowl Lanterns from Anthropologie $38

Monday, August 31, 2009


I was listening to Sherwood Carthen's series from a few weeks back. Man, does he have some fire. One of my favorite quotes was this:

“Most of the people in this room believe that wicked people will be judged. But we don’t ever think of ourselves as wicked.”-Sherwood Carthen

How true is this?! I love it. It's such a good reminder to stop and take a critical look at ourselves before we start pointing fingers of condemnation. We are absolutely no better than any other person. Just because we maybe haven't committed some of the more "glamorous" sins (why do we glamorize certain sins anyways?), doesn't make us any more righteous than those who have. Because we've certainly done our fair share of damage to ourselves, to others, to Christ, to the body of community which we belong to. It was all of our sins that held Christ to the cross, not everybody else's minus mine.

Ah. What a great suckerpunch of humility.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


It's funny but I've never really been into New Year's Resolutions, but I've always loved New School Year Resolutions, haha.

So with the new school year approaching, I'm considering doing two things. The first, is keeping a Money Diary, a la Ramit Sethi's money diary series. The only thing is, I need to switch it up to make it continually interesting to write/read for a longer period of time than just a week. This idea needs a little more fine tuning.

The second idea is to take a picture of my outfit every day. But my outfits can sometimes fail to inspire even me, or I'll throw on a tee shirt and jeans before rushing to class and therefore, have a blah outfit. Maybe I'll take a picture of someone's outfit each day, a la The Sartorialist although mine will be a lot less beautifully photographed haha. At the same time, I like the idea of a chronological time line of outfits, styles, and trends that I am into.

If I do either (or both), I will make separate blogs. If I choose to do just one, I may stick with this blog. I'll make a post about it when I do decide.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


Working retail has given me not just work experience, but a self-realization of the fact that I have a sharp intuition for understanding consumers and their spending habits. It took close to a month, but I finally understood who our target demographic was (middle age to elderly couples with young kids or grandkids) and how they viewed their money.

Most customers come in to browse, and end up finding stuff for the whole family. It seems like no expense is spared for their kids/grandkids. Clothing is an especially large area of consumption. The bookshop's selection of apparel for the entire family is pretty smart. Graphic design is also a huge factor here-I know I may not be able to design a shirt, but I can always tell if a shirt is going to be a big seller. I also have a good eye for arranging displays.

Part of me feels like with my inclination towards understanding the customer and not just the product (in fact, I feel like I barely know any of the 97812983412 bazillion products we carry, other than the clothing), is affirming of my current Business major, haha. But I wonder if I would still have such a thorough understanding of what sells well here and why, if I wasn't out on the floor every day. If I eventually worked for a company doing marketing or budgeting, would I have such a keen grasp on what works and what doesn't? I feel like I am sort of destined to become an entrepreneur, lol.

Friday, August 28, 2009


I saw these shoes in downtown Santa Cruz. I want them!

They're called the "Peony" by Roxy. Would look so right with a medium wash pair of bootcuts and a drapey top.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


Ungh. So much for budgeting. I definitely went over my budget by $120 ish. While I am bummed that I didn't stick to this month's budget, I am still satisfied with my purchases. I did a little back to school shopping. It's a bummer when you start back to school shopping for yourself, as opposed to those good ol' days when your mom took you back to school shopping-and paid for everything, too!

I still haven't discovered the "trick" per se, to completely sticking to my budget. I've followed it really well lately, up until yesterday. I feel guilty for not maintaining it, and yet if I'm satisfied with my purchases, if I know that it's going to last me for a while, doesn't that qualify as a good purchase? Or am I just justifying my spending? I think the part that gets me is knowing that I'm already over budget, so going over a few more dollars won't hurt. This, my friends, is dangerous thinking. How do you stick to a budget when you know you're already over the edge?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


I don't believe there is anything inherently wrong with having money or liking expensive things.

I feel it's so interesting how in different social settings and different groups of friends, "keeping up with the Joneses" looks so different. This summer, I've been around people who are making less than $30,000 a year. They are very aware of prices, and I have found myself enjoying shopping with them, which usually means thrifting. However, whenever I want to stop by Urban Outfitters or another retailer store, I've noticed that my friends feel uncomfortable being in such stores, and don't even bother looking around. I also feel incredibly self conscious and rather judged if I do make a purchase at retail price. While I am not against buying used clothing, sometimes I am just not in the mood to sift through so many things to find treasures.

In contrast, my friends from back home (I went to a private school) are used to buying things at different price points. Everything is pretty much Macy's, Nordstrom, or higher end boutiques. It is not unusual for us to spend $50-$100 on an article of clothing.

All that to say, do you find yourself more inclined to spend when you're with wealthy friends than with middle-class friends? If so, do you feel out of your element financially-wise when you do hang out with them? How do you maintain your budget while still enjoying going out with people of a higher wealth level than you?

I guess it comes down to whom we're buying our stuff for. Ourselves? Or others? Because I enjoy designer clothes, but I was recently talking with a friend who pointed out that sometimes I give off the rich-kid-haven't-worked-a-day-in-her-life type of vibe, which is SO far from the truth! But apparently, because of my passion for style and clothing, I somehow give off that impression, which makes me kinda sad. So where's the balance? I enjoy clothing, but I don't buy it to show others I can afford it. Unfortunately, that's what people will inevitably infer. But if I let their opinions affect my purchasing habits, I will ultimately be buying clothes to be more sensitive to others, so I'm still buying FOR others if that makes sense.

Monday, August 24, 2009


"I'm not obligated to be holy I was created to be holy, when I am not living in holiness I am living in loneliness, be holy & u will be happy."-Jaeson Ma


Who knew that Twitter posts could be so thought-provoking? I especially love the line "when I am not living in holiness, I am living in loneliness." You know why that's true? Because when we are in holiness, we are united with our Creator. When we choose to turn our backs and walk away from the very Giver of life Himself, we walk into sin, and God cannot follow us into sin.

And yet the curious part is that even if we've walked 1,000 miles away from Him, whenever we decide to give up our brokenness, to submit once again to the furious love of our Abba Father, we find that He is closer than a step away, waiting to reach in and banish the darkness with His holiness and light.

It's kind of like sitting in a dark closet with the light off, scared of all the monsters that lurk about. When you ask Him for help, He turns on the light and you can see every facet of your life so much clearly.

So, here's to light switches.