This past weekend Tyghe and I went to the beach thankful for the ability to escape flooding Bangkok, play some frisbee and enjoy the beach. We went to Phuket, a highly built up island in southern Thailand that is run for the most part by the Thai mafia from what we’ve been told and perhaps has links with Russian mafia as well–given the influx of so many Russian tourists, and all three languages (Russian, English and Thai) present on the island, it wouldn’t surprise me. In essence many who travel to Phuket accept the fact they will be overcharged for everything…absolutely everything. But I am not going to talk about our holiday…Tyghe will do a great job of that on his blog so see that for the vacay story and I believe he mentions what I will talk about. His blog will be a great sum up with pictures–the happy stuff which was indeed happy and I had a great time in that respect. Instead I will highlight one not so awesome experience as it resulted in an interesting topic related to faith. This is not a ‘devotional blog entry’…it’s a life entry…life based on faith. Continue reading “the good, the bad…the beach”
I thought this was funny…and I could relate to some of the ‘evaluations’ so I thought I would share. These quotes were taken from federal employee evaluations, crazily enough. I wonder if advisers/bosses knew that their employees could read the evaluations they’d still write things this harsh? Probably.
- Her women would follow her anywhere, but only out of morbid curiosity.
- Since my last report she has reached rock bottom and has started to dig.
- When she opens her mouth, it seems that this is only to change whichever foot was previously in there.
- This young lady has delusions of adequacy.
- This employee should go far, and the sooner she starts the better (My Ph.D. advisor said something akin to this to me!)
- She’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer. (THIS TOO!..My advisor said something similar to this to me as well!)
- She’s about as bright as Alaska in December.
- She’s so dense light bends around her.
- She has a full six pack but lacks the plastic thingy to hold it all together.
Ouch. We all have moments of blatant stupidity for sure and while I can laugh about these comments now as they are painfully funny…when my advisor was suggesting such things it was mortifying.
So I’ve gotten a few curious emails as to why only on this blog do I preface it with ‘Devotional Blog’. To answer: there are people who don’t really want to read about thoughts pertaining to faith, the Bible, religion in general so I’ve prefaced this blog so that those who want to skip it can do so easily without having to read it. Also on the right hand side of my blog are links by category topic…so those that want to read about specific topics can do so without having to sort through all the blogs on the front page.
OK, moving on…the following has stemmed from a conversation with a friend about love, grudges and forgiveness.
Topic: “Forgiveness”, 10/7/11; 1 Peter 4:1-8
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins” -1 Peter 4:8 (NIV)
Who hasn’t been pissed at someone else? A friend, a relative, an immediate family member, the random Thai person that walks .25 miles/hr 3 people abreast blocking your ability to go around them and completely oblivious to your attempts to politely get through them…With friends usually the solution is fairly simple, you get mad at each other, you yell or heatedly talk through it and come to a resolution which hopefully keeps your friendship intact and usually does. Friends usually have a wide flexibility in pissing each other off because of how long you may have known them and the extenuating circumstances of the fight. You are usually willing to give them a voice to explain themselves before writing them off…usually. The same goes with family, or should go with family. There are grudges in my family that have withstood the test of time though–a few going on a a decade plus! Its amazing sometimes to realize how deep a persons anger or hurt goes and often times they don’t voice these problems face to face, leading to decades of silence each party believing themselves justified in their anger and judgement over the other person. And I’m not saying they don’t have good reason, in their position I don’t know what I would do. But today’s passage has made me think more about my own ‘grudges’ and anger at those who’ve insulted me in the past or done hurtful things.
Topic:”Light”: 10/5/11: Matthew 5:11-16
There’s a children’s sunday school song that goes:
“This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine. This little light of mine I’m going to let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine….”
The verse talks about holding fast when you are persecuted for your faith as you are called to be a ‘light’ to others through the example of faith your life. The author talks about persecution in China and how believers there withstand a lot of harassment and yet still share their faith, assemble in their churches and strive to be light in a harshly and strictly controlled religious environment. I am fortunate to live in a country that does not persecute my faith but rather encourages respect for all faiths. Not to say that respect for faiths always happens in our American culture but we are free to believe, practice our beliefs and share our beliefs without fear of being dragged off to prison.
I have never personally experienced religious persecution…if I’ve been criticized or ridiculed it was more likely due to something inanely stupid that I did or said rather than a direct attack on my faith. I’ve always been open to sharing my faith with anyone curious but I’ve never been the type to walk out and just wallop a random stranger with my beliefs–“BELIEVE!!!…oh and by the way hello, my name is Mel”.
A list of how I will not spend my time:
- worrying about what others think
- holding grudges
- drinking bad wine
- finding ways to ‘avenge’ my hurts from others
- cuddling things that are not soft
- arguing illogical people
- trying to be someone i am not
- allowing the stress that came up during my Ph.D. to ever enter my life again
- eating Lima beans or mayonnaise
- picking on myself
These are the things I will not spend time on…whether it actually happens remains to be seen but sometimes it’s interesting to put down a ‘not to do list’ rather than a ‘to do list’.
So after combing the myspace, facebook and personal archives I have compiled everything now onto this site with handy category tags listed to the right. If you are interested in a particular topic click a tag and you are off!
So if posts are entitled and have a repost note and date you know its my invocations from a previous life…most likely my Ph.D. life; which you may find highly amusing or slightly depressing. Quite a few Ph.D. skeletons fell out of the closet when I opened it!
William Borden was born into great wealth and attended Yale in 1905, but if you do a search on William Borden on the internet you won’t find great business dealings or a discovery of a new drug…he died at 25. And to many his life was a great waste.
Well…I am now back from my trip to D.C. I got my fill of museums, dancing, city life, good (expensive) food, and monuments. All in all, not bad for a break. I will only describe one experience here.
So while I was during Christmas I encountered many friends I have had since moving to the islands when I was 11 (10? 11?–ah doesn’t matter)…and I saw almost all of them between Oahu and Maui and talked to the rest via phone. And between the people I know from home, all the friends I met and have through school and family–I have realized there are really two types of people. Those who live and those who exist. Not that one is particularly better than the other, just depends on the person.
I’m back from Brazil! I am not going to relate the specifics of my trip if you want to know that stuff check out the blog I kept: http://springinbrazil.blogspot.com but suffice it to say it was absolutely amazing.
When I decided to go to Brazil I went to refocus and clarify somethings in my life about my future and where I am supposed to be following the completion of my thesis. I got down there and the people were so wonderful, so passionate about their work and what really matters in life, it was so intoxicating and contagious. They were so full of faith and perserverence. It was such a priviledge just to be down there and help out with their ministries and be with them in general. Being down there re-confirmed what I already knew in my mind. I had lost my passion, my direction which I know may sound odd since I’ve been on this PhD path for the past 4 years and have never really detoured from it. But I was beginning to forget why I was doing it…who I was doing it for…
I think it’s healthy to every once in awhile really take stock of your life and if you are living it the way you were intended to live it. Idealistic, faith driven–I am…I believe there is a reason for everything, even the shittiest things that happen to us in life. Going to Brazil allowed me to darken my mind and pay attention to the spots of light in my life that I’d thought I’d lost.
I made some amazing contacts and I will be pursuing the possibility of returning to Brazil one day after I graduate or going to the Tenwek mission hospital in Kenya to see about the research ward there. Currently they do not have one, I would love to establish one. The hospital is the only one for 100’s of miles in either direction and it’s a good hospital but I need to look into their staffing for monitoring of infectious disease/epidemiology, outbreaks in the area, and what the possibilities are.
I am so excited for the future, I cannot even begin to describe how much easier I breathe now. I don’t know honestly where I will be when the chips fall, but I walk through the doors that open to me, I don’t question the ‘plan’ for my life, I simply walk it, run it, drag myself through it if necessary, easy or hard–the way I always have and I believe that’s only way I will be content in this life.
It took darkening my mind to see the pinpoints of light representing the good things and promising things in my life that drive my passion.