Healing The Brokenness In Our Hearts

Ugly crying.

Heartache and heartbreak. We try to avoid it but it comes after us. It makes for the best writing and the best songs, the best art, it’s what makes us human. Without it we wouldn’t know vulnerability, we wouldn’t love well.

We don’t love people well when we have closed hearts. Open hearts feel with others. Open hearts allow the risk of being hurt to be present. Closed hearts says “I don’t want to listen to your story because I don’t want to feel what you feel”.

It’s easy to be logical and tell someone to leave their abusive or unloving husband or boyfriend, but to go through it yourself, or to follow your gut and not your heart which often times is tied to brokenness in your soul, that’s another story.

As I’m talking to my friend about heartache I remember this one time years ago where my ex roommate tucked me into my bed. He was my first guy roommate.

I thought it was fine because I had a boyfriend. I was safe because I was taken, I wouldn’t have some type of love affair with a guy I lived with in the same house.

Because I was so broken and didn’t know what love was supposed to be like, I was attracted to men who were emotionally absent. And even physically absent, like my father.

My ex would disappear for days, sometimes not answering my texts or calls. I’ve never been obsessive, I’d send one text and wait patiently for a reply. I’d give up. I’d think “he must be busy”. But my mind would run wild. Where is he? What is he doing? I made excuses for his behavior. I thought it was normal because the fact that anyone was around was enough for me.

3 days would pass.

And the one who was present? My guy roommate. He had his own room FYI. I cried and told him my boyfriend had been ghosting me. I didn’t understand why there was a wall I couldn’t break down. Even when he was present, I couldn’t read his thoughts and he didn’t share his emotions with me. He was just a very practical guy. He could fix cars and lights. He could pay for dinner.

He understood instructions, and completed tasks, but when it came to his heart, he was completely illiterate.

My roommate played with bunnies on the grass. I thought he was a bit feminine. He wrote poetry and we would read our writing to each other.

I realized that I often went for guys who were emotionally unavailable because it was safer. I know it’s sound strange. Because emotional openness means telling your truth, and risking having to feel what you don’t want to feel.

It’s easier to shut your heart down completely than to speak your truth and feel those emotions.

My ex would tell me he needed space. “Why can’t you just tell me you need space?” I would say.

My roommate tucked me into my bed as I cried over my boyfriend at the time. Why am I with a ghost when there is flesh and blood here? He told me to breathe as he said breathing brings you back to yourself.

I didn’t understand it. I’d be attracted to a non-present man, while next to me was someone available, someone emotionally open, someone loving.

And my broken soul had to go for the broken man.

Someone I couldn’t attain, someone whose heart was locked with a dead bolt, tripled locked. No amount of prying, questioning, asking, praying seemed to do the job.

The only thing that pried my ex open was me mentioning breaking up.

It was the first time I saw him cry in the 2.5 years we were together. He begged and cried. What can I do to change, he asked. I said I needed to be with someone who believes in Jesus and I want to marry one day.

He said he would go to church with me. Let’s get married now!!

I said, no.

Because those weren’t the factors that prevented us from moving forward- I knew for ages that he wasn’t it, he wasn’t exactly what I wanted as a life partner.

So my heart didn’t want to break up, but my spirit knew – he’s not it. He’s not your life partner.

It’s easy to avoid talking about your emotions, it’s easy to shut down your heart.

What’s difficult is saying how you feel. And finding closure and agreement.

If you’re going through heartache I pray God would give you comfort in this hour. I pray you would know that God is with you.

He loves you dearly.

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Open Your Heart To Feel

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A rice paddy in Bali, Indonesia

Women are scared to reject men because they don’t want to be the cause of someone’s pain. To be the cause of someone’s pain makes you feel that you are not enough and you can’t possibly make everyone happy.

But essentially you are not God.

I meet lots of men and women that tire themselves out trying to be everything to everyone and I have tired myself out like that before.

You are not responsible for how others feel about themselves. 

Most people will not understand why you do what you do.

You will upset and hurt people for living your truth, they will not be able to understand why you chose to leave home or chose to be far away from them.

You cannot change yourself to make others feel better about themselves or to appease them to fill and cover insecurities they feel about themselves.

You can only live your truth.

You can only live out your truth.

And when we don’t, when we pretend to be something we are not- our hearts suffer from it.

We can’t love without risking it and we can’t love without experiencing pain.

What I mean is- you are no responsible for protecting peoples’ hearts, God is. He is also responsible for protecting your heart. 

We can’t live our lives being afraid of offending others, call it “politically correct” or socially acceptable. Jesus was offensive. He loved those who didn’t deserve love in society’s perspective.

The disciples wanted him to be around all the time but he disappeared to have alone time. 

You can’t right all wrongs. 

You can’t explain yourself to everyone, and you don’t need to.

The ones who usually need explanation are not those who want your help and want to understand- they just want to instigate and make you feel less than….

Their own insecurities causes them to question your confidence. 

Perhaps if they make you question yourself they’ll succeed in derailing you from your truth and insecure people love to have company.

I am not saying I am always confident but I’ve learned to follow the voice and heartbeat of God, I’ve also learned to listen to my heart and to trust my heart.

And to seek that quiet voice instead of all the noises that seek to distract me, and they do come, often.

The naysayers say “but over confidence in yourself is wrong” when in truth they are petrified to follow their heart because they are afraid of failure, humiliation, rejection, judgement and most of all- PAIN.

Because some people will avoid pain at all costs.

Pain, disappointment conveys to them “you’re not enough”, you’re a loser and not a winner.

But pain is part of life.

Pain is your heart aching for heaven on earth.

Paradise, never ending love.

It’s an echo, a cry for help “there must be more” says your heart.

There must be a love that is eternal, a love that never fails you nor forsakes you, a love that doesn’t cheat on you nor betrays you.

And that love came to earth to bear all our pain and imperfection- Jesus.

That’s why it says “cast all your cares on the Lord for he cares for you”.

And there is no such thing as failure because God desires honest more than feigned enthusiasm. He is a God that is more than able to handle our fragile hearts.

Sometimes things we don’t expect comes out of our mouths because we’ve suppressed our truth for too long, pretending to be a version of self that is acceptable to others, whether that is our friends or family.

People (strangers) confess things to me they’ll never tell their friends or family because the shame is too much to bear.

People will tell me about relationships they had with married man/woman, abuse, deep longings, relationship fails, parents, self-abuse, attempts at suicide, sleeping with prostitutes, etc….the shame is heavy to bear and so they unload to me.

And for some reason, I feel no need to judge as I am myself imperfect.

But that is love, a total embrace that is unconditional.

I’m currently in Bali and the air is inspiring me in all kinds of ways. I’m overcoming my fear of the scooter as 3 years ago I got into a moped accident. I’ve learned to let go a little and just have fun in the midst of ministering and praying for people.

Yesterday I was praying for a girl in the middle of the lake.

Now I think about it I could have baptized someone, that would have been cool. But I’ve learned to just take a chance, to not forebode what could happen, but simply trust myself and God.

The woman who I’ve become friends with at the local eatery said “thank you! I slept well last night after you prayed for me. I’ve taken your advice to get more rest”.

The prophetic word- I saw a shirt the other day – it said “think less, live more”.

There are times I’m petrified and anxious, God how are you going to do it? How will you provide? And then He comes in when I least expect it.

I’ve told many people my testimony at the hostel I’m staying at- people are SERIOUSLY bewildered when I tell them that I haven’t had a phone for weeks and that God always provides what I need, even if it’s a stranger helping me with a ride or carpooling with me. 

God always sends angels to help me. 

And with this I realize that I’m living in complete trust in the Lord. That He literally is taking care of me as a Father would.

I usually would have some fear going into a new country but I knew that I would carpool with someone. I asked 5-6 people if they were going to Ubud and I ended up in a car with an Australian couple. It was a divine assignment. During the 1 hour and a half I prayed and prophesied over them as I heard their stories.

Everyone has a story and sometimes it’s cruel, sometimes it’s painful. 

But God is making all things new.

He is healing every wound and every bad memory and He is restoring unto you all that you have lost.

A girl I prayed for at an ice cream shop

God does not want slaves to listen to orders, He wants friends that will partner with Him in restoring the earth and the hearts of people.

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Knocking Down the Wall of Self-Protection, The Key To An Open Heart & A Full Life

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“How are you?”

“Are you okay? Okay, as long as you are okay”

Well I don’t want to be okay. I want to feel, to experience all levels of emotions.

This morning I woke up from a dream where I could feel my whole being weeping. In the dream, I was experiencing every emotion I’ve somehow neglected to feel, that I’ve managed to numb. Because it’s too much sometimes.

But I woke up, I could feel my whole body shaking as I made weeping sounds and my eyes turned puffy in no time. All the pain started lifting off my body as I experienced the pain in my heart. Though it wasn’t necessarily voluntary and sometimes God needs to show me my true emotions in dreams, I was grateful.

You know what it felt like?

Like when a kid is VORACIOUSLY hungry or tired and he/she cries like the world is ending. I bet you’ve seen it.

I wish we could feel that much all the time. But somehow most of us can’t, we cover up our true emotions by staying distracted. 

We binge eat, drink, smoke, get addicted to a substance, stay numb by netflixing, gaining weight, or losing weight, focusing on what we don’t have and trying to get it, work….complain, blame, escape (hey, how about travel, I know I personally have tried to avoid my emotions by escaping LA), shop or take pills because it’s too much to feel.

But you know when you have A REALLY SOUL WRENCHING cry and then suddenly your body feels lighter? Like a whole slew of burdens have lifted off your shoulders? That’s how it felt. And you know when you give that kid a good meal and they’ve slept….and suddenly they can smile again? Yah that’s how this feels.

Today someone asked me if I was okay. I said “no one’s truly just okay, everyone is going on a journey and some are just not aware of how they are feeling”.

I’m not saying everyone is depressed or going through intense emotions, I’m saying somehow in our society it’s not okay to show vulnerability, to be struggling internally, to have deep emotions. 

It’s okay. To not be okay. I like this journey. I am feeling more emotions, I am feeling the pain and the joy. I am choosing to be alert, to be conscious, to feel deeply. 

I met two men last year that I thought were respectable, honorable, honest men. I thought they would be good candidates for a potential life partner. But when I got to know them a little more, or actually even as I was talking to them I noticed there was a wall. The wall of vulnerability.

The wall that says “I’ve been hurt, don’t get near me”. 

I know I’m still breaking down that wall myself and truth be told, those two men reflected my state of being. You meet people who you reflect. Everyone in your life is a mirror to your own state of being. It doesn’t mean that you are exactly like them, but there is a part of you that is reflected in them. 

That’s why they say “wounds attract wounds”, “you are attracted to like minded people”….so they key to being with the right life partner isn’t so much about fixing the other person, but working within your soul to heal the wounds that attract wounded people.

It doesn’t mean you are insufficient, every part of the journey is worthwhile, but if you are going to spend the rest your life with someone…you want someone on the same level of “healed” and “healing”.

If you want someone to treat you a certain way, learning to treat yourself well is everything.

If you want someone to love you a certain way, learning to love yourself well is everything.

We can’t expect other people to take responsibility for our healing, we must actively seek it out. First, we must open our hearts, that is a personal decision. Second, we forgive, and that’s also a personal decision. 

I know there were times I couldn’t listen to other peoples’ problems because it triggered emotions of my own that I was incapable of experiencing.

The only reason I’m sharing this is because I’m walking it. Healing is not easy, but worth it. I hope you will continue walking with me through this journey- Subscribe on the right side of the blog via email (right side of blog on desktop computers and if you are reading via phone subscribe on the bottom of the blog)! 

Also if you are interested in the forgiveness class that I talked about in my last post, please visit https://hope4hollywood.com/register/

How I was Healed of Hypothyroid

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Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING in your life comes down to one thing.

You are enough.

Or the question of “Am I Enough?” 

When it comes down losing weight – am I slim enough, am I enough? Am I beautiful enough? Am I good enough for you (in relationship)? Am I smart enough? Am I successful enough?

So I’m going to tell you my struggle this year.

I’ve been in a long season of training and waiting with God. In March, I was told by my doctor that I have low thyroid. I thought everything would be okay with my blood test but apparently there was something wrong. In slow-motion, I thought to myself “omg, this is bad”. The next few months were filled with paranoia. 

At first, I tried to eat the medicine they gave me but had horrible insomnia. The next day I called and the nurse said to eat half the pill so I did. Again, horrible insomnia and fast beating of heart. Finally, thank God the doctor said to stop eating it and just eat seaweed.

I ate seaweed like my life depended on it. Then I went to an eastern doctor and got remedies. I cooked herbs for 3 hours once every few days.

But what broke the spell for me was when I watched Joseph Prince’s message about healing. He said that the word healing had “relax” in it. The key to healing is to rest in the finished work of Jesus – “by His wounds we are healed”. 

And even if you don’t see it yet, you believe it, you speak it, it becomes your reality. You have to have faith.

You can’t believe and then continue to live in paranoia. Obviously, you still have to do the work of eating seaweed or whatever it is, but you relax knowing that God is currently healing you.

I said “God I don’t know what I’m doing because whenever I exercise too much, I get sick and whenever I don’t I feel gross and fat and since I have low thyroid I am just gaining weight not eating much. I feel defeated. I can’t do anything on my own. I believe that by your stripes I am healed“.

In May, I did another blood test and my thyroid levels were completely normal. 

Well, now it’s August and I find that I am still low on energy and feeling unhappy at times. Now I know that God is healing me but I am starting to see that the condition of my heart is closely related to “my happiness”.

God is healing my heart of old disappointments, hurt from the past and when you are going through heart healing, you may not have the energy to do things like “normal people”…

Do you ever notice when you force yourself to do something you don’t want to, you feel anxiety? 

It’s because you are not listening to your heart.

Your heart may need to lie down, mope a little. Maybe it just needs the time to do so.

Our society doesn’t teach us how to honor and protect our hearts. Society tells us to hurry up and just get over it. 

Society says, YOU ARE NEVER ENOUGH so you just need to hustle everyday, go to the gym for 6 hours a day and even when you feel good enough, you’re not enough.

But I just want to tell you that YOU ARE ENOUGH. And God loves and accepts you as YOU ARE NOW.

What about getting fit? Or getting healthy….believe that the God in you is healing you, directing you, guiding you. Listen to That within you that knows you full well.

Even when a trainer says they know better…….ask them “do you know what it means to feel enough?”

Because this society is full of people that look good on the outside, but feels LACK within. The lies we tell ourselves “I’m not enough, I don’t have what I need now, I’m never going to be enough”.

The truth- You are enough. You have everything you need now (this also relates to consumerism in our society and why we often consume in order to fill the void we feel within), you are already enough now.

What if we lived from the love and Enough-ness instead of the lack and unworthiness? 

PS- when it comes to dieting, we subconsciously tell our hearts “you can’t have what you want” which translates to “because you can’t have what you want, you don’t have enough, and YOU ARE not enough because you don’t have what you want”. So we cheat. because we are living by RULES versus desires. I wonder if that’s why people also cheat in relationships, because we are tying ourselves to rules instead of living in honesty about what we really want and need. 

Why is there a CHEAT DAY? Isn’t that the same idea as saying you can go on vacation because the work you do everyday- you hate. What if we lived in a way where we learn to honor our desires and needs? And we live out of that place of abundance. 

Having Faith Is Not For the Weak

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It’s finished.
Everything you want, that you can dream of, it is completed.
It’s finished Jesus said as He gave up His spirit on the cross.
The gospel explained. Religion tries to add works to it. Religion is us trying to work towards God, grace is God reaching us.

It is finished. Your perfect health, your provision, your dream life partner, your house, your healing of your broken heart, the restoration of your family, your retirement, your whatever you are worried about.

If you choose to believe that Jesus did it for you, then you will receive it. But you can’t plan it. You can’t humanly know how it will happen but the process is learning to trust that God is actually good.

I used to be a workaholic, I used to think I needed to prove myself. I didn’t feel complete, didn’t feel loved. I felt like if I worked hard and became successful in the world’s eyes then I would be worthy of love, then people will love me, esp my family.

In Asian culture, it is very esteemed to be a doctor or lawyer. Parents often compare their children. Even though my family was quite different, my mom as a piano teacher and my dad as a professor, my mom probably felt the pressure too to prove that her child was esteemed. Well, here I was, a fashion design major who worked all throughout college and then 9 months after graduation…but then I hated sitting at a desk…I quit my job and went backpacking for 2 months in Australia.

 

It didn’t end there. I decided I would never go back to the life of a desk slave, so I started to build my empire selling jewelry, life coaching, doing all sorts of things. That happened in 2011.

Then God led me to an unknown path and I chose to believe despite the fact that it looked crazy. I gave up everything, my ego, my money, my house, my good credit, my car, my stuff, my own plans, how I wanted others to see me. I chose the kingdom.

Ever since I was young, I had clear goals and dreams. I was aggressive in my approach and worked hard to get whatever I wanted.

Even though I am a creative, I had very clear plans for God to fulfill. But He had other plans for me. He wanted to restore and heal my heart and my identity. He wanted to show me that I was loved for who I am and not what I can achieve. He wanted to put me back into my family and show me that my family love me for who I am. 

Sometimes I listened and obeyed even when it meant getting on my knees and crying, asking God if He would really provide for me when I was alone on an island, with no friends or family.

And then He would send a total stranger to help me when I regained trust in Him. But usually it meant becoming totally helpless.

God was teaching me total reliance.

Having faith is not for the weak, it means believing for the Red Sea to part when everyone is buying wood and making a boat.

You may doubt yourself in the process, but when you see God continue to part rivers, seas, oceans for you He becomes your best friend, your father, mother, mentor, guide.

From Solitude to Relationship, My Path To Healing

Part of the CHALLENGE of life is finding your voice, finding what you want, and speaking forth those things...this includes finding your own boundaries and emotional space.

I was up late booking hotels for Vancouver and the rockys. And I got really anxious and then I couldn’t sleep, and then I got hungry and had to face some fears I had.

I felt out of control, but suddenly I realized maybe that’s where I needed to be. Out of control.
Sometimes things need to be out of our control so God can work. When we are gripping so hard on our plans and how we think our lives should work out, we have no room to hear God.

He said….you are enough. Dont worry about making the wrong decisions.
I get decision phobic when there are other people involved because I fear their disappointment, especially when it comes to my mom.
I am good at making decisions when I am alone, maybe that is why I like being alone. I have no one to disappoint. It is a lot of pressure to travel or even be with other people.

But I am learning it is not my responsibility to make others happy. Other people’s emotions are their responsibility.

I have been learning to set emotional boundaries for my whole life.

I like being alone. I’m good at it. I spent most of last year alone to heal. I could think clearly when I’m alone, I don’t have other peoples’ shit clouding my atmosphere.

Being alone is a safety net for me.

I know what to expect. I’m in control.

I think I’ve been so used, or perhaps I have ALLOWED myself to be so used that I no longer trust myself in relationships.

Could I speak up or stand up for myself? 

It got to the point where I just had enough and had to cut people out without explanation. I assumed that people knew my boundaries without my having to say so, but life is verbal….you must speak up for yourself and your voice matters. 

Part of the CHALLENGE of life is finding your voice, finding what you want, and speaking forth those things…this includes finding your own boundaries and emotional space. 

Emotional Intelligence includes learning how to communicate your needs and wants. 

So I was driving back from Palm Springs with my mom the other time and she kept talking and talking…my head space was getting foggy and I was WORN OUT. I was not in the space to just download crap into my mind. 

 

I said “mom, I need to rest. I don’t want to listen anymore” and she stopped talking. I was amazed by how I just simplified my life by speaking up. I thought she was angry that I spoke up but eventually I realized she did respect my space.

Relationships are not easy…with parents, with friends, with partners, lovers, spouses.

It takes work to find clarity within yourself – to see what wounds need to be healed, to see what fears have you sweating at night or stress eating (like I was last night)….but when we find clarity within our souls, it is healing, it is redeeming, it is freeing.

“I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; from where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord. He will not allow your foot to slip” Psalm 121: 1-3

I had fears that God will not be there for me to help me stand up for myself.

I don’t have the strength to always know where my boundaries are, but that is why I lean on God’s grace to help me. He will never leave or forsake me. I’m right here, He says to me. I’ve never left you. I will not leave you to fend for yourself. I love you. 

We must learn to communicate our boundaries if we are to be healed and come into healthy relationships. May this journey to be a fruitful one for you. Love and healing is worth it. You are worth it.

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A New Day: My Story of Broken to Healed

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Less than 3 years ago I was sitting in a hostel in Barcelona in a bunkbed.

I had a dream that I was to quit real estate, like not actively participate in it anymore. I had just carried a duffel across western Europe and little did I know how much that experience would change my life. It was also on that bed that I first saw Toure Roberts speak via youtube. Up until then my relationship with God was outside of institutions because well I had let go of a really closed minded institution. I grew up going to church and I didn’t realize how legalistic most churches were until I finally left 6 plus years ago.

And I saw God like I never saw Him before. Gracious, fatherly, loving, generous, slow to anger, quick to love, quick to extend a hand. 

Then like a snake, I shed everything. I shed my career, I shed my relationship, I shed some friendships, I shed my apartment, I shed my prized super comfy sofa that I really loved, I shed almost everything, the forks and plates.

I had built my life on a lie, that I wasn’t enough. 

And God would speak into those insecurities and continue to speak “you are enough right here and right now” in the next days, next year, and so forth.

I learned to love myself in the darkest places of my heart. I learned to be okay with emotions, you know the ugly ones…emotions like “Hey you hurt me” or “hey that hurt, I mind that you said that”. I learned to VALUE my voice. 

Because even now when I tell people what I’m going through they quickly remark “you are victorious” instead of being there with me in the pain. I have learned that not many people are comfortable with facing their place of pain. Reading “No More Faking Fine” has taught me to lament, to struggle with God in the pain, to be okay not being okay.  

And obviously we all hate it when people complain too much or dwell on their pain 24 hours, we hate it…yah, that’s another issue, but some of us, like me, never learned to lament.

In the months and year of feeling like “nothing was happening” God was actually healing me and replacing the lie of “I’m not enough” to “I belong, I am enough. I am loved and accepted right here and right now”. 

And in doing so, I no longer needed the attention of people…of men, or the desire to need to be wanted or chased by potential partners. I no longer needed acceptance from people. And yah, I still have insecurities here and there but I feel different, I feel at peace with who I am now. 

No longer chasing things, opportunities, friends, potential friends, potential mates…I sunk deeper into God’s unconditional love for me. 

I would no longer be defined by my accomplishments and accolades but by the tiny and still voice of “enough” and “love”.

I found God’s love to be deeply captivating, deeply protective, silently powerful. 

The breakthrough is here. The breakthrough is you. The breakthrough is YOU knowing who you really truly are.