Walking In Faith Always Requires A New Level Of Trust

12208524_10156221339385603_3959912852139803803_n

(Catba Vietnam)

Whenever a new challenge comes my way and I have doubts and feelings of lack, I remember how God delivered me.

For one, as I was walking home, I thought about how whenever God called me to something, I never actually had the finances or resources for it. It required faith and trust and follow through. I had to obey and walk through the steps. I don’t know why God has given me this kind of faith or why He has required it from me, but maybe because I was born into situations that required me to have faith.

When I went to Thailand I had a one way ticket and $1000. The paycheck I was “relying” on never came through and as much as I chased down that client, I had to learn to let it go and forgive him. 

I would hear a country, a city, and go. One way tickets. There were times I pretty much ran out of money and then something would show up like the idea of selling an old tablet, which afforded me one week at a 10′ by 5′ prison celled size room.

Or how I would be dancing at a bar and a Vietnamese lady would offer to pick me up at the train station the next day and I would learn about their lives while I lived with her.

Or how I would forget but randomly mention my blog and be offered rooming for my marketing and writing skills.

But at the end of the day, God always called me to people.

He never showed me exactly what would happen, but He would tell my heart to trust Him. And I would be petrified, but I would walk forward, trusting that I wouldn’t be stranded on an island.
And that has almost happened too.

But then I’ll be eating my last $2 and then a group of travel agents would join me and ask me to drink with them. And then somehow I would become friends with people I would have never met if I wasn’t out there eating alone at Catba Island, Vietnam.

MY life is full of stories like this.

And so when I am feeling challenged, I would remember, God did this and that….and I would never fail to be in awe once again.

So whatever new challenge you are facing today, remember how God delivered you then and how our whole life is a series of trusting for the next level. 

10156155_10156178854375603_220236106441056332_n

My couchsurfing host in Hanoi, now a sister.

11987065_10156178855160603_8613048680853376720_n

Saigon, Vietnam

12246604_10156257097255603_3013638467830805830_n

Biking in Melaka, Malaysia

12227647_10156239663885603_572912086054926248_n

Dancing at the temple, Melaka, Malaysia

1610987_10156221340195603_1836596220117257669_n

Catba Islands, Vietnam

Advertisements

“You don’t have to do anything”.

17883678_10158543581650603_1972807668824605490_n

Recently I have been on a journey of becoming more free.

“You don’t have to do anything”.

I have been hearing this from God. I had an epiphany. If what I do isn’t purely from desire, then what is it? Guilt? Obligation? Tradition?

And I know people will probably oppose and say there needs to be compromise in love. I don’t know anything about marriage, I’m just talking about my relationship with God. 

It really intrigues me that people often think that if you don’t go to church, you have a disconnected relationship with God. I have learned better than to argue. Even though it still bothers me, I will state my case and move on. It’s weird how I have met tons of people that religiously attend church but never have one conversation with God. But they think they are somehow better off than those heathens who have taken a hiatus from a building that is deemed clean and holy. 

“You don’t have to do anything”. 

Love is only possible if there is freedom to choose. 

“You don’t have to do anything because you are already loved and accepted by me, as you are now. You are perfect in my eyes”. 

And then it struck me, I am free. I am free. I am free. I am free to do and be who I am. 

A lot of people who grow up in authoritarian cultures, religions and institutions are taught to ask for advice, to seek counsel, to never TRUST yourself.

Wayne Dyer said ” I’ve often said, ‘When you trust in yourself, you are trusting in the wisdom that created you.’

If we are propelled forward by total acceptance and love, then we no longer live in fear. We are no longer afraid of making mistakes. We will no longer fear that we will be rejected by peers or co-workers, or friends. We will try without fearing failure. 

I suppose it could relate to relationships and friendships too.

Would you want a friend to tell you “oh I didn’t really feel like calling you, but I did. I have so much to do and I’m so busy so I’m really taking time out to listen to you”.

It’s like “no thanks”. I would rather someone do things out of desire. 

Love as desire, Love is desire.

Sometimes you might feel hesitant to hang out with certain people, perhaps because they have changed or you have…it might be because you no longer enjoy their company and its okay to say no lovingly. I’ve realized that your friends are basically mirrors of who you are in any current season in life. So whoever you hang out more with in that season has a reflection of what your needs and wants are….and those priorities may change. Those friends may also reflect the wounds you are currently healing. In a way they might be healing from the same things. 

That’s why in some seasons you are closer to some than others. Every person has a purpose in your life, in this healing journey called life and love. 

Sometimes I have events that come up and I have to ask myself “do I really feel like attending and being AROUND people right now?” 

I’ll hear myself and my heart say “no”. And that’s basically how I have learned to listen to my heart. And sometimes it’ll say yes. And sometimes I don’t know how I feel and maybe I’ll try it because I’m a free woman…and then maybe I’ll want to go home and watch netflix and that’s cool too. 

But this is part of learning to live the life you want, the life you love. 

It’s living in love, desire and not obligation…because the more you follow our bliss, the more alive you will feel, the better you will feel.

When you feel good, you are in love with yourself. And that’s a good thing. When you are in love, lovely things are attracted to you and loving things come to you. 

Instead of obligation- desire, excitement, bliss.

Instead of fear- love, freedom, light.

Kismet & The Power of Growing In Grace

Today was a magical day.

I feel like a new person.
True, after years of lament and grieving over the past, after feeling numb, I went through 12 seasons of healing…or more.
Sometimes I just felt like shit for no reason. Sometimes I woke up heavy, asking what was the purpose of it all.
All of this came from broken places within me. Grief of losing a best friend, grief of a broken heart from a long term relationship, I had to let everything fall to pieces and rest in the finished work. I was pushing really hard in my career but it seemed nothing was working and God was telling me to back down. 
I had to believe God in the process. 
And even though many a times there was not a smile on my face, there was not a feeling or desire to dance, socialize or make friends…how could I when everything I had known was too good. Could I have that again? Being known without words? To be appreciated that way?
The healing process is slow and tedious, it is like having the last inch of hope, crawling, lying down.
I think when God told me to sell everything and follow Him, it was a literal and spiritual sense of letting go of what I thought I wanted.
Even though we think we have big dreams, our idea of what our life should look like often is not holistic. 
For example, we want a husband, a house, a good career yet we have broken relationships with our parents. In fact, some of us hope to build a life when we haven’t talked to our parents for 10 years or we have deep distrust of men but we hope we meet prince charming.
These are contradictory.
God will not force onto you what you are not ready for. That is why the way of grace teaches us to wait upon the Lord. 
I know as humans we want things to happen fast, but I have found the way of grace, it teaches us that healing our being is not automatic, it is a process of relationship with God. 
God will not give you what you are not mature enough to handle…..and we can hustle, push for it outside of flow and grace…..and that is when dysfunction happens. 
Trust the process.
In all the waiting I have found that God really does know better. Even though I often struggled with “not knowing”, I found peace in the rest and grace of God.
Everyday was an act of surrender.
I learned to say no continuously to the things that did not feel right. I trusted God’s voice to not pursue opportunities and doors that were opened to me, I asked God for each decision. 
It’s definitely not easy, but it is worth it. Today I enjoyed a nice dinner and cocktail, and then suddenly felt an impulse to do yoga. I have NOT actively exercised, besides walk everywhere. Even though I felt groggy, I knew that it was part of my healing and that I needed to allow myself to just be, to be okay with the process of rest (sometimes just resting in bed). 
Sometimes I felt bad for gaining weight, but then I would hear God say “it’s okay, you are perfect”. And I knew that I needed exercise to come from a place of desire rather than a place of lack.
I desire to feel good in my skin versus I’m not GOOD enough so I need to lose weight and look good.
I needed my inner glory to match my physical glory.
And so I ran, I ran to the yoga place. I didn’t think I could do it, the hot yoga, but I felt every piece of the past fall off me, sweat off me.
“I am more powerful than I know”. Even after months of rest, I was more powerful physically than I knew.
Afterwards, I was waiting for the bus and turned around….it was a friend I had met online, eating inside a restaurant with a friend. OMG.
I ran in and talked to them. This was an online friend I met via our blogs.
Kismet.
Then I talked to a hot fireman and must I say, I have not talked to anyone of the prospective male species for awhile. And it felt good. To be like available emotionally again.
So happy birthday to me, February is my birthday month and I am excited.

Your Breakthrough Is In Your Presence

by-learning-to-be-present-we-are-choosing-to-open-our-eyes-to-daily-miracles

How do you deal with uncertainties? Life is full of unknowns.

God often surprises me by destroying plans I had, even for Christmas. I might have assumed something but then those plans are easily pulled away from me. This week I woke up with horrible vertigo and puking. Yes, it was awful. I thought I was going to die and I prayed really hard. The sickness came and went, tried to come back again, but finally left.

I was grateful. It humbled me as well. Sickness is humbling. It reminds you, you are fragile, weak. 

I felt that the puking was like a cleanse to the negativity in my life. I realized it also stemmed from my not eating when I would get hungry. Deep down, I had some insecurities about my recent inability to exercise and was afraid that I was gaining weight. But I think deep down I felt that I was not good enough. 

During my time in bed, I kept hearing “you are good enough, you are enough” over and over again. In my inability to do anything, I soaked in God’s unconditional love for me. I was reminded that I had been trying to figure my life out again, even by planning my days, I was trying to control my life. I wasn’t handing over the reigns. 

Soon enough God heard my prayers and my mom actually took me to this Chinese medicine woman who gave me a diagnosis and some herbs. Soon enough, I was also alone again. This time a little disappointed that I would probably spend the holidays alone. I didn’t really understand what was happening.

I know that 2017 is a year of alignment, but even in those days where I’m writing, painting, watching Elementary, I’m wondering what my life will even look like soon.

What no eye has seen,
    what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”[
    the things God has prepared for those who love him- 1 Corinthians 2:9 

But today as my flesh and mind finally let go of plans and the need to KNOW, I went to the movies (which always calms me down), cried my eyes out watching Moana and Collateral Beauty (good for emotional cleansing, the movie seriously left the whole movie theater room sniffling), and then in following my desires for some food and boba, was led to divine appointments with strangers. One lady I met when I asked her about this hat I wanted to buy, I said “just to make sure, this is the English flag right?” and then I continued the conversation by asking if she was Irish and she said German. Well, since I was born in Germany, we had no lack of conversation.

Our need to know always ruins the moment doesn’t it? In the story of Adam and Eve, that is what ruined their life at first….the need to know without the relationship with God, which is based on trust. We are unable to live in the moment, to see all the beauty and love around us when we are in our head, figuring every detail of our lives out.

I remember when I was dating an ex, we went to an Italian restaurant in Santa Monica but his mind was absent. The bill was over $100 but I could have stayed at home, watched netflix and ate mcdonalds for $5. It wasn’t about our surroundings, how delicious the food was, or even how romantic the ambiance was. I thought the food was okay, but my ex said it was a waste of money and that the food was horrible. To be honest, if I was eating by myself, I would have enjoyed everything a lot more. His energy totally killed my vibe.

His mind was somewhere else and I was unable to connect with him. 

We can truly enjoy the moment when we choose to be grateful, to notice the miracle around us. Everyday is a gift. When we are present we are able to connect with the people who are around us. That is one of the reasons I love traveling because I am usually present. I see the world with wonder, everything is new to me and I am not thinking about anything else. I don’t plan either, I usually allow spirit to lead me to the right place at the right time. I follow my bliss, I follow the adventure. When I am tired, I sit down at a cafe and observe the beauty around me. By being present I meet the most wonderful people.

When I was in London, I ate at a market in Brixton and met this girl. She asked if she could share the table with me. Turns out she worked at the Globe Theatre and she invited me to watch a play with her. I was truly grateful because she gave me free tickets and I had made a new friend. I was reminded that God was watching over me in every step of my journey backpacking through Europe. I have thousands of stories like this, divine appointments I call them.

Follow Your Curiosity: Moulin Rouge

14606519_10157695442020603_2456890664331527368_n

I think Elizabeth Gilbert once gave a speech about this.

There are things in my life that I never thought I’d get to do. If I had followed my plan for success as a young girl, I would have never dreamed of dancing at the Moulin Rouge…but somehow after talking to the producer for months, this dream came true. I flew to Paris and danced there.

Watch the Moulin Rouge episode here, remember you need to download the go90 app to watch the whole thing.

But I never thought I’d have the courage to do some of the things I’ve done…or to even be interested in doing it. Most of the things I did because I thought it would be fun.

Here’s a list:

  1. After I quit my job, I started selling jewelry because I liked jewelry. And also I saw some vendors selling jewelry on the streets in Australia when I was traveling.
  2. When money started running dry, I wrote down a list of things I was good at and started teaching them via craigslist. I had two senior aged students. I fell in love with old people then.
  3. When I was looking for places to rent, I met a realtor and thought gosh I could be a realtor, this looks fun. So I became a realtor. I walked in obedience to the calling I felt to serve people wherever I am, but when God finally said to let go, I let go. When the joy ran out and it became a source of strife, that’s when you know “this season is over”.
  4. I really needed to laugh more, so I took a comedy improv class. The teacher told me “I have a face for commercial acting”…I followed the lead. I took the commercial acting class, got a bunch of headshots, got an agent even, worked my butt off….and that curiosity actually led me to reality shows. Not commercials. In fact going to auditions was actually God’s way of solidifying my identity in Him. 
  5. My curiosity to like find my life partner (dating) got me on a show that was about dating, so I thought, but then it was actually Married By Mom and Dad. After I prayed about it and heard God say “don’t worry you won’t get picked” I decided to go for it, trusting that God would protect me. Yes, I wanted to get married, but to the right person, and this was believing that what God said to me was true.
  6. I didn’t get married. Thank God. Now my curiosity said “I’ve been wanting to go to Thailand for a few years”. I booked a one way and that curiosity took me all over Southeast Asia.

These curiosities are interests. Passions, perhaps. But what you do doesn’t define who you are, it actually just grows you more, gives you riches in the heart, makes you who you are in the end, gives you stories to tell, gives you friends that last a whole lifetime and more. The difficulties makes you persevere, it teaches you about your heart. 

I bet you have questions…like but what’s your compass? My compass is the God who created me. I talk and converse with God every day, moment even. He gives me wisdom about what direction to go, sometimes He trusts me to make the decision, but sometimes I ask for reassurance. Some decisions and directions are pretty straight forward- like if the person who is offering the opportunity has no integrity, the opportunity feels like striving instead of abiding, I have no joy or interest in it. But the point and the goal is to live with God. Really, to learn what freedom is.

Oprah said “what is your intention?” and I ask myself this when I go about doing anything.  I trust the holy spirit to guide me through desire…for example, yesterday I didn’t plan anything for Halloween but I didn’t want to sit at home all night. I took the bus to Pasadena and went trick or treating. Yes, as an adult. And you know what, I HAD SO MUCH FUN. And I went by myself! Gosh, I forgot HOW MUCH I LOVE CANDY! But it was just fun meeting strangers. I do this kind of thing. Because knowing God is with me, I can do what I want without fear.

14938261_10157696789960603_4282077032491270787_n

That’s me in the Mario mask and some stranger’s kid. LOL.

God-employed

My conversations with God are often in moments of frustration, probably because I have been practicing patience all my life. I am like a jack in the box that has been kept in the box for too long.

But even then I know God is strengthening me for the path ahead. A lot of people have asked me about my “self employed lifestyle”. Honestly I am not self employed, I am God employed.

I CANNOT EVEN IMAGINE HOW I COULD HAVE SURVIVED WITH MY Sanity attached all these years without God.

Because entrepreneurship was more about just learning to converse with God and to build this trust relationship with Him.

Entrepreneurship divorced from God is like unimaginable to me.

Only last year did I basically let go of full control and let God take over, up until then I was still asking God to bless my plans. I thought that in order to do good in the world, I had to first be like Tony Robbins. Little did I realize that things spark fire in brokenness. In our inability, God does what humans cant.

I call this grace.

So yes I managed to survive and sometimes thrive, but it was when God told me to sell everything and follow Him that I totally let go of my fear of not having enough, not being enough, not trusting him basically to take care of me.

I let go of my apartment, I let go of my new car that was leased, I let go of my credit (it plummetted), I let go of the lifestyle I was trying to sustain, when in actuality it was a huge facade of the shit that was inside my heart.

I was so tired.

I had lost friends. Family had spewed accusations at me, I had just gotten out of a codependent, unhealthy relationship where I felt like I completely lost myself.

When I lost everything I actually found myself.

I found my sweet authentic self at the core of my tears and brokenness.

So began my rebuilding of my dreams, my heart.

It was at that moment that I felt I would do anything for what I really wanted out of life, even if I had no food or shelter. I SAID God anywhere, anything, I am willing.

That is when grace filled in the gap. GOD CAME.

I got opportunities to be on 3 tv shows within a year. I stayed with my friend for a few months, ended up booking a one way ticket to Thailand.

I traveled with the spirit, not knowing where I would go next. How?

Everyone asks how. But few actually believe. You cannot do great things without first stepping out in faith. God just showed up in so many ways, sometimes through strangers, sometimes through divine encounters.

What has this year been about for me?

1. Learning to stay in faith when hardships come

2. Restoring and reconciling my relationship with my mother. When I was living alone, I had a huge motivation to prove her wrong. My family basically thought I had gone rogue and was screwing up my life by following my dreams. I remember going to Europe for 2 months and actually blocking her number because I needed space.

As an asian dsughter, I had to really speak up for myself. OUR RELATIONSHIP HAS IMPROVED DRAMATICALLY. I think it was at that moment when I was crying my eyes out because she wasnt happy for me when I told her I got this huge opporunity…..that I realize, yes she loves me, but when will I stop living for her approval??

Many of us are waiting for someone to be proud of us, to tell us, you are enough……but God showed me, I am enough for Him.

3. Breaking out of the world’s system of success

4. Living in freedom

Xoxo Rebekka

How To Protect Your Heart When You Have An Asian Mom

You are responsible for the well-being of your heart. Yes, you are.

You are the landlord of your heart and you get to decide who and what resides there (landlord analogy by Christa Black). When I was younger, I’m 28 now, I opened my heart to lots of people because I thought, “well I’m taught to love people right?” but that’s when I realize that THERE IS EVIL out there. Real evil. And then I got frightened and closed my heart up after too many evil encounters. Thank God I’ve been healing from those manipulative encounters and learned to guard my heart.

I learned that it is important to have boundaries in your life. And you have to SPEAK UP for your heart, it’s your responsibility YO.

Which leads me to the whole controlling Asian parent thing again. 

Recently I’ve been blessed with good food and have eaten well. It’s just this season of rest and getting fed. Well, my mom mentions a couple of times that “watch your weight”, your legs are getting fat or your stomach is getting fat.

And as you can see, I’m not an obese person, I’m a pretty skinny Asian woman that happens to have curves. (This just goes to show the impossible culture Asians live in).

I was totally fine the whole day, had no neck aches and for me when I have neck aches it is usually because I am fearing something. 

SO at night I start getting these crazy painful neck aches and I start to do my inner healing, meditation, prayer time with God. I ask Spirit what the hell is going on. I look back on the day. I mean I had really great food, got this amazing dress from Nordstrom, felt so alive and free all day. I felt abundant.

Then it struck me, that moment when my mom….instead of saying “wow I had a great day with my daughter”, she said “your stomach is looking fat, watch yourself”.

Gosh, how encouraging.

So in that moment, subconsciously my self worth was struck down and subconsciously I heard and felt in my spirit “You’re not enough, you’re not good enough”. 

Wow. I love healing sessions with God.

So then I start planning a speech about what I’ll tell my mom, how I’ll speak up for my heart so that I can protect it in the future. Then I have this crazy dream about a childhood friend who I am no longer friends with due to parental conditions (aka controlling Asian parents who basically took control of our friendship and ended it with, well their controlling spirit). 3 times I ask her what’s wrong, no answer.

Finally she tells me “my mom died”, I hug her and we cry and cry. Then my mom comes in and questions what I’m doing. And the light bulb went on. When do Asian kids ever grow up? Some of us, without knowing it, are still being controlled by our parents. We feel out of control, we view God like our parents…unrelenting, angry, controlling.

In Asian culture, there is no such thing as GRIEVING, we are taught to get over it, cover it up, Asian moms don’t really have much capacity to comfort or tend to your emotions (I’m talking about the older generation, now not all moms are like that but I have seen a lot).

So in the grieving, pain process, we are often commanded to ANSWER TO and name WHAT IT IS we are going through. And as you know, grieving is messy, you can’t always name it. People want to KNOW shit because they feel like they are in control if they know what it is you are going through. 

Some Asian adults still feel that they are seriously unable to make their own decisions. They feel powerless in their own lives and a victim of circumstances.

Well, after my dream….I knew I had to just speak up.

“mom, can you not say anything negative about my body? It hurts my heart and honestly if I want to exercise or lose weight I will, but that’s my own decision. This is my body, not yours”. 

And with that, she said okay, as long as you yourself know.

And even if I sometimes feel insecure, I know that this season is actually a blessing.

Why? Because most of the time when I’m traveling I’m losing hella a LOT of weight and I barely have an appetite sometimes, like in Cebu, Philippines, I was shitting out water, or food that turned to water, okay I know Too Much Info.

Which leads me to my point.

I once heard a relative of mine say after I chose DISTANCE from certain people in my life that “people have a right to their opinions about you”. Well I have a right to “who I want in my life and what opinions I want to hear” because most peoples’ opinions ARE NOT truth about who you are in LOVE.

Because LOVE feels good, love FIRST tells you your true identity, then in the encouragement, propels you TO DO GOOD….not the other way…like when people yell at you and tells you “you suck” and think that ‘s going to encourage you to change. LOL.

So guard your heart because out of the heart comes all the goodness and junk of life. You have a right to say NO and TO create healthy boundaries, use your speech, speak up like I did.

PS- I love Asian moms, don’t get me wrong. Not all Asian moms are this way. There are many reasons people become controlling or negative, most of the time they are speaking out of their own insecurities. AKA my mom just bought this weird massage tool that is supposed to massage the fat out of her body. I love my mom- she is REALLY amazing. Sometimes I have to write about her because well, it’s my experience and I believe it can free others.

This article doesn’t just apply to Asians or moms, or women, this applies to ALL HUMANKIND. Maybe even animals. I pray this article may help free you to LIVE IN FREEDOM!

How To Protect Your Heart When You Have An Asian Mom