Yesterday, I did something I regret. The thought of it was torturing me even as I went to church, knowing I can’t properly worship Him like a hypocrite when I just sinned, when I’m not even sure if I can keep myself from sinning that way. I’m really asking for grace to help me not give in to temptation, but then I realized I myself should run away from it. I opened the Bible just now, and He said:

People can be forgiven any sin and any evil thing they say.
– Matthew 12: 31

His constant presence amazes me. It is unfathomably awesome to be acknowledged and forgiven by such a great God.

Personal tips on buying secondhand gadgets

I just bought a secondhand gadget for the first time last year, and I regretted it. I’m trying to pat myself on the back right now and reassuring myself it’s my first time, but just for sure, I’m going to list down what I need to check next time I buy a secondhand gadget online.

  • The package is complete and original, as much as possible. If not, the price should justify it. It should have a box, the unit, a cord, a charger adapter, head phones and if you’re lucky, a case.
  • It should have a screen protector. I don’t know how to check for scratches underneath a screen protector, especially if it’s matte, but you should be as speculative as possible.
  • He or she should be the first owner of the gadget, which brings me to my next point:
  • The battery life should be good, meaning:
  • If you want a longer battery life, buy something released two years ago or less. It has probably been used for a lot of battery-draining processes.
  • Better yet, buy from someone a friend or a family member personally knows and has good reputation.
  • I think it is safe to judge a book by its cover in this situation.
  • It is probably safe to get other contact details of the seller, and if possible, a copy of his or her government-issued ID.

I bought an Obi-Wan Kenobi toy yesterday, and I don’t even regret it. I just find it weird that I can spend so much in one go. I know it’s not much for a lot of people, but for someone like me, it is. I also found it strange how I hesitate buying everything except food, but when it came to that one Hasbro Obi-Wan toy alone on the shelf, I knew I just had to get it. I had to, before the new characters take over. It’s the bigger version, and I can open it, unlike the other toys, and still return it to the box, which will also be valuable probably fifty years from now if I get broke and this becomes a collector’s item and I’m trying to sell it… which I probably won’t do.

Now I’m also saving up for that collector’s lightsaber, which I’m going to buy after I manage to save up for it, once I get a summer job. It switches colors, from Anakin’s to Darth Vader’s, blue to red, which is really cool.

I just realized how weird it is that I haven’t wanted to buy stuff for so long, and here comes this toy, and I can’t let go of it. I’m a 22-year-old female. This is normal for some people, isn’t it?

I made a schedule on how to study for topics under our Neurology block, but as usual, it was not followed. It was partly my fault for not being persistent on it, but I could see how virtually impossible it is to follow it. Simply speaking, it was not realistic. Plus, neurology is so damn challenging, it almost seems impossible, and that thought is making everyone including me in our class a bit lazy when it comes to dissecting things we have to study. It’s as if we’ve all abandoned the idea of mastering our topics, we’re only relying on remembering certain tidbits and relying on luck for the exam.

But I’m forgetting about God’s grace, and here’s what He told me this beautiful Saturday morning.

Being lazy will make you poor, but hard work will make you rich.
Solomon 10: 4

In the same chapter, Solomon said:

It is the Lord’s blessing that makes you wealthy. Hard work can make you no richer.
Solomon 10: 22

Another thing I got out from the chapter is this:

The more you talk, the more likely you are to sin. If you are wise, you will keep quiet.
Solomon 10: 19

At first, we would think the first two verses are contradicting, but I still see how that makes sense. Doing nothing will lead me to nothing, but I can’t really achieve anything unless I lift it up to God. Plus, I remember when He said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.” If the ultimate goal is to get rich, I don’t think I’d get anywhere. But that is not really what’s been bugging me about this passion to become a doctor. If I wanted to get rich, I’d invest in something else. But this is a long and excruciating process, and I really believe I can use this to serve Him. That means, everything I do along the way should not be half-hearted if it is all for Him.

Hence, study hard. :)

Following Christ

This was our topic last Sunday at the service. I remember the pastor saying that it’s simple, but it’s not easy. It’s free, but it doesn’t come cheap. It will give you everything, but it will cost you everything. Even so, it is all worth it. It is so freaking easy to nod and smile while the pastor was preaching, but when real life slams you with situations, you begin to sigh and complain to God, all the while saying sorry about sighing and complaining.

One such situation presented itself to me when mom told me we were meant to live with my grandma after dad died and we lost our possessions. Don’t get me wrong – I love being here and living with grandma. But the house is old, I don’t have my own room, and my brother is miserable, because he thinks he lost everything, a huge chunk of that is dad. We used to have our own house, everything was convenient, so we had to make a lot of adjustment over the years. I’m pretty fine where I am, happy even, but there are times I think about how the things I had back then were privileges, and I only realized that when I lost them.

Anyway, mom said she had read in the Bible a story about a man going back to his family, and I believed her. Of course, I do. It’s amazing how God talks to us this way. I have my own experiences, and I’m blessed to be guided by Him. It makes me cry tears of joy when I think about how we can actually communicate with Him if we try to get closer to Him, because back then, I thought it only happened in the Old Testament.

Mom believes we were sent here to save our loved ones. That is because my uncle is currently living with her girlfriend in the other room. His girlfriend was married, but she was a battered wife. We don’t believe in divorce or separation. My mom stayed with my dad until the end even though she sacrificed and suffered a lot, but it was possible, all because of Jesus. Anyway, my uncle’s girlfriend has kids almost my age, so in short, they have a broken family.

I then proceeded to think how all of our lives are meant to suffer the consequences of other people’s actions. If my dad was a well-rounded man, my brother wouldn’t have to end up with clinical depression and a seeming addiction to smoking and alcohol. None of this would’ve happened. Now that that ordeal with dad is over (and it did end well), we are moving on to suffer another person’s consequences for him?

My mom then said that if Jesus’ spirit is truly in me, I would rejoice in it. I, honestly, find that very difficult. I still find it hard to thank God in difficult situations, but I’m glad that He’s the first one I turn to for help when that happens. I just don’t have the guts to thank Him, like my mom does, and like we Christians actually should, because we believe all things work for good to those who love Him.

I know what she means. I’m just finding a hard time accepting it. I just told her to not let my brother hear that. It would seriously devastate him. I now knew what being Christian meant – simple, but not at all easy.

My life is kinda epic

This morning, I was in Fiji, but before I was allowed to dive on my own, I had to undergo a test. I had to go through an obstacle course designed to imitate the real dive site. It was challenging, simulating whirl pools, but I got through it. I passed, and I was so excited to finally dive, but before I was able to, I woke up.

Yup, it was all a dream. I even clicked ‘snooze’ on my alarm so I’d have a few extra minutes to go to the real dive site in my dream, when my mom woke me up again, and for what? So I could put medicine on the lesions on her butt. I told her I could’ve been in Fiji, but instead, I was rubbing ointment on her butt.

Plus, my stomach is getting a bit acidic, and I just vomited twice last night, but right now, I’m watching Dawn of the Dead to distract me from my recent crush. I don’t feel my barf reflexes acting up yet, so, the movie’s still on.

God’s message for today

The first thing I did when I woke up was to read the Bible, but I admit, God was not the first in my mind when I woke up. That being said, I just read the first part of Revelation, and went about my day without really praying. I don’t wanna beat around the bush, so I’m just gonna say my day sucks without God. It is full of frustrations, and even the things which do not normally frustrate me do end up frustrating me.

So I had my silent time with him at noon, and here’s what He told me:

The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of struggle.
– Psalm 9:9

The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
– 1 John 2:17

I really did ask Him to talk to me, because as much as I should avoid getting frustrated, my frustrations are actually justifiable. It is not easy to be in med school, and I don’t think anyone in this house has a full grasp of that. When I study, I need to be undisturbed. But everyone keeps on asking me to do little things for them and think it’s okay because they’re just little things. When I study, I need to concentrate. Plus, neurology is not a joke. Keeping the momentum and concentration is important. Plus, I am reminded of the past every time I do chores, because I remember how it was like when we had someone to do things for us, like drive us around or iron my clothes. I know it sounds ungrateful and bratty, but you don’t really appreciate privileges until you lose them.

Moreover, my brother is still depressed and even though he doesn’t admit it, he’s really angry at God and how things have turned out. We did try to talk to him the other day, and he rejects what we say, but my mom said he has read something from Proverbs after our talk which really struck him, and my heart just cries happiness for that. I believe God will work through Him. I believe He won’t abandon my brother because He loves us and we are praying for him.

So, two verses for today’s frustrations. Now it’s time to turn this day into blessing. I’m gonna start studying now, but I also wrote something on a Post-it to keep me reminded:

FAMILY / MED.

God will provide me with the ability to understand and comprehend what I’m studying, and just the right amount of time to help my mom and grandma at home, while still being able to study. After all, this is all for Him, and I am nothing without Him.