ajml

Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category

Late Night Thought

In Late Night Thoughts, Personal on February 23, 2015 at 00:23

Plunged in the middle of the sea’s insanity, the nerves under this fleshy exterior is awakened by the coldness of the saline. It’s invigorating. It’s exciting. It’s adrenaline-building. Every weight of me hauled back and forth in the middle of the waves’ game of tug-of-war, each wave crashing against the body’s fragility, each force creating an even larger crack than it already has. But as the sea loses more of its control, I start to do the same— allowing the hungry waves to swallow me whole—allowing the whole of my being be wrapped by the waves’ enormity. And in the very few seconds before the water can ever fill my lungs, for some odd reason, I find something freeing.

A Letter to My Slowly Debilitating Soul

In Letters, Personal, Reflection on November 12, 2014 at 22:46

Dear AJ,

This is a wake-up call—a message for those times you lose sight of the things that really matter and wander off because let’s face it, we all have gone again and again through the struggle of keeping ourselves on track—it’s awfully difficult as we all may know already and I don’t think that even a single soul had been successful enough to stay on it. By some means, eventually, we will find ourselves losing our balance, losing our grip, losing our control over our own lives. I want you to know that that is completely okay, perhaps normal even. However, when you fall back, keep in mind not to linger in this horrid state for too long. Actually no, do not stay there at all. Pick up your feet, dust yourself off, and keep moving forward. This is an attempt to electrocute your soul. Yes, that’s what this is—a slapping in the face of your slowly debilitating soul. So listen up.

Today is your day. It doesn’t matter where you are now, doesn’t matter what you are doing right now, doesn’t matter when is now. But I am telling you—today is your day—your day to become more than the person you are right at this instant. Remember that you have every bit of capacity to become more. Don’t settle for anything mediocre. The world has loads of mediocrity already and you are not bound to be one of them. God didn’t make you to be just okay—no. He made you to be undeniably beautiful.

A quick exercise: Think about that one thing that you have seen or encountered in your life that you consider genuinely beautiful and I am not talking mainly about the outward show here. Think of that thing—a person, an event, a place, a whatever—but that certain thing that you consider utterly beautiful that it actually made your heart cry or better, made you literally cry just because of its being. And I want you to be specific. It can be this truly inspiring person you look up to. It can be the breath-taking sunset you just witnessed a week ago. It can be an unexpectedly kind deed from this total stranger when you absolutely needed it. It can be the sudden realization and legit appreciation that you are in fact alive in this very moment you’re reading this. It can be just about anything! And if you cannot filter just one, it can be a collection of all things beautiful that you have experienced—do not limit yourself—but do pull out only those which sincerely gave you that wonderful sensation. Take your time and find this thing in that powerful storage protected in that thick skull of yours. Now, I want you to focus your mind on it— focus on it hard enough that you are able to sense those delightfully unexplainable feelings again just when you first chanced upon it… Now, that—God created you to be that beautiful and to be able to give off that sensation to the world. You are created to take part of a larger cause—a cause that is far larger than yourself.

A part of what feeds your larger vision—part of what gives you a reason for being—part of what gives you your life is being able to give something back. You cannot say, “but I can’t afford to give something back,” because you cannot afford not to give. You can give your time. You can give your talents.

Moreover, when I speak of the world, I do not solely mean the people and the things around you—think about this, the world includes YOU as well. Yes, God created you to spread out beauty and goodness but when you perform certain tasks, it’s not just the world that you should make even a little better—God wants your soul to feel grand with these things you do—he wants your soul to grow splendidly. What things do you sincerely enjoy doing? What things get you excited to wake up in the morning? What feeds the fire in your soul? What are your goals? Figure out these things, continue to work towards that goal, and you will be deemed successful. Now, how you measure success may vary from person to person. I, however, find Earl Nightingale’s definition the absolute. From The Strangest Secret, he said:

Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal… A successful person is someone who says, “I’m going to become this,” and begins to work towards that goal.  I’ll tell you the successful people are. A success is the school teacher who is teaching school because that’s what he or she wants to do. A success is the woman who is a wife and mother because she wanted to become a wife and mother and is doing a good job of it. A success is the man who runs the corner gas station because that was his dream. A success is the entrepreneur who starts their own company because that was their dream – that’s what they wanted to do. A success is the successful salesperson who wants to become a top notch salesperson and grow and build with in his or her organization and sets forth on the pursuit of that goal. A success is anyone who is pursuing deliberately a predetermined goal, because that’s what he or she decided to do—deliberately.

So for you and as part of your tithing in the universe, do this and let this empower you to become the person you are originally designed to be. Still not convinced? What’s stopping you? Is fear getting in the way? What are you afraid of? Failure? Well, just keep this in mind: We become what we think about. If you continue to think about failing, then you are most likely to fail. But if you firmly believe in your capabilities and you firmly believe that you are made of greatness, then you will certainly do great things. Mark 9:23 says, “All things are possible to him who believes.” Walk through the fire with your head lifted high, and keep pressing on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called you. It does not matter how many times you’ve failed or how many mistakes you’ve made—take heart and say yes to your dreams—say yes to yourself. Believe that you are capable of doing wondrous things in this world. Remember that you are specifically designed to be first-rate—to be extraordinary, to be brilliant, to be excellent, to be magnificent, to be phenomenal. You are alive to be indubitably beautiful.

Now that we have ignited a spark in you, the next point is about you being aware of the people who you allow to be around you. The people who you have around you is a vital aspect of your journey to become more. Jim Rohn says, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” So if you spend your time around whiners, you will eventually be a whiner. Spend your time with people who plan and do stuff, then you will most certainly develop the habits of these people, too. The people around you hold the power to enhance and enrich your life or to drag you down. So stay away from critical, negative, discouraging people, and walk with people who dream, believe, and do things—with people who sees the greatness in you—walk with people who enable your soul to be persistently hungry for growth. Your soul needs to be in constant flame just as your body needs nourishment in order for you to really live. Do not lose your fire. Preserve it. Stay away from people who are trying to put it out. Do not allow anyone to dull the sparkle in your eyes.

Again, I will tell you: Today is your day. Start today. Go into action. Do not wait around for things to be perfect, or to be just right—do not wait for the ideal situation because it will never be ideal. I beg that you get out of this kind of thinking, otherwise you will end up in your death bed full of regrets of the things that you should have done while your body still has the ability to do so. Grim comes without prior notice so make the most of your every day.

Sincerely,

Life

I Need A Reboot

In Personal, Reflection on October 25, 2014 at 12:12

Or at least I feel like I need one.

For the past couple of weeks, I feel like I’m gradually being pulled into this void– this void that I was once in– maybe more than once. Twice? Thrice? Maybe even more. Everything is just getting off-balanced and it feels rather horrible. Yeah, I definitely need a reboot. A restart. A realignment. A retuning. A reset. A re-whatever.

Setting me off like sparks, you ignite all the colors inside my heart.

In Personal on June 22, 2013 at 19:30

Keeping Myself On Track

In Cathedral of Praise, Personal on January 13, 2013 at 02:53

Received this card last Sunday (January 6) from Church as Pastor Sumrall shared thoughts about being loyal, constant, and steadfast; an interesting subject, at least for a person like me who struggles being faithful– and by faithful, I do not solely allude to being spiritually consistent but being consistent in its general sense.

. . .

My Faithfulness Goals 2013

Consistency in:

1. Praying everyday and doing my devotions.

I do say my prayers, unfortunately only when I remember to do it. I don’t want to remember His presence only when I need Him; I don’t want to come to Him only with pleads. I want to make it a habit to acknowledge God every single day of my life, not missing a day He grants me another one to breathe out; and as much as possible to stretch out an arm only full of praises.

2. Getting updates and bonding with my mom and two younger brothers all the way in Switzerland at least once a week.

I find it difficult to genuinely bond without the physical presence of the other. If they’re way over there and I’m here, eventually I’m going to run out of things to tell and they’re going to run out of things to tell either. If I’ve done something stupid and funny, I can’t Viber it to them and make it still sound as funny as when it happened so I end up not telling it anymore ’cause what’s the point if it will not be as laughable. Come on, things are a hundred times humorous and not to mention more genuine when you’ve witnessed it or hell, when you’re a part of it! In addition, I find it more hearty to share my thoughts with someone who’s actually present. We can video call or whatever, but it’s different when they’re there, you know what I mean?

But I’ll get past through that. I’ll make great efforts to strengthen our bond because, hey, it’s family we’re talking about here; the only people who will never turn their backs on you, they will be there for you till the end.

3. Coming up with a drawn work once a week.

Remember that post saying something like resuscitating my debilitated soul for drawing? Well, I’ll liven it up by making it a settled practice at least once a week.

4. Being venturesome!

Okay, this one gives a paradoxical impression. I mean, being consistent in being unexpected, right? But, hey, I need the extra boldness in me. So, cheers to that!

. . .

I’ll get back to this list soon, perhaps. But for now, I’ll leave it at those four.

Late Night Thought

In Late Night Thoughts, Personal on January 5, 2013 at 02:28

Have you ever seen something/ someone just too beautiful it made you cry? When your heart gets genuinely overwhelmed ’cause of their very being– that kind?

I am utterly captivated by you and all which makes your essential being, and I love you for that; but not in love with you, just, love you.

Getting Back On That Horse

In Personal, Sketches on December 30, 2012 at 08:57


Evidently, it’s far from being finished but I’m working hard to get back on that horse. I’m in an endeavor to get these hands back into sketching. Well, okay, mostly just my right hand ’cause I’m not ambidextrous like Leonardo da Vinci or those other highly gifted dudes and chicks.

It’s been a while since I picked a pencil up and threw in some circles and swirls and lines on a piece of paper. School has something to do with it (Yeah, that’s right, school. You and your homework minions suck. Kidding, I love learning. HAH! No, seriously. Anyway, getting off topic here) however, I think it’s mostly because lately, my heart’s no longer into it. I do not feel towards it the way I feel before towards absolutely everything when I was little: so full of energy, so full of curiosity– so full of heart.

. . . . .

I find it just so beautiful– art in general– and how it serves as a mode to express one’s feelings and or ideas. It’s like the mind of the creator pulled out of his head and into this piece– may it be visual, performing, literary, or those other forms, for us to see but not really see. It’s very interesting and very expressive of sentiments. It’s wonderfully mysterious that it symbolizes a secret story from one’s mind and that we can never be assured no matter how hard we try to decode what the piece is genuinely saying– what brought its existence– the full-on story behind it, until the maker himself reveals what it truly signifies. And thus, we settle with our own interpretations. These works can mean anything which moreover fascinates me– that a single piece of art can hold a whole bunch of meanings to different people. It’s soulfully amazing how it can have very vague intentions and hold such distinct features at the same time.

I started on that sort-of-soul-piercing-eye-wouldn’t-you-think-so sketch a month ago in an attempt to resuscitate my debilitated soul for drawing. Although I am on a holiday break with no other things to prioritize but being on a break, I still can’t seem to complete this thing. Recently, I just fail to feel the same as I had before towards it. I wish I can get my soul back into drawing as enthusiastically as I just talked about how verily my admiration for the field it’s in. But then, maybe I just lack vision.

When I feel the want because I feel the need of it because I have so many locked-up feels and ideas that require immediate liberation, that’s when I find my fingers positioning themselves around a freshly sharpened pencil. At the moment, that strong creative impulse might just be out of hand. Perhaps, a good book, a nice conversation, or maybe just going out will get me back into it.

Cold Stares, Warm Hugs

In Personal, Reflection on December 12, 2012 at 10:57

It’s funny how we think we know people. We get a slight encounter with them and then decide what they are. Or less well, we obtain secondhand information about the person and  thereon, we assess their very being.  Let us not deny that we are judgmental beings, people. At one point or another, we have wrongly adjudicated a person.

I am guilty of having done such, however, I shall get rid of such way. I am not perfect, neither are you– hell, no one is; I have my own set of flaws just as the rest of the world has its own. What gives us the right to be critical of others?– No. You know what? Even if we are free from all flaws, we hold no title to assess another one’s being. We’re all going through so much affecting the way we are now. We make mistakes; we come up with bad decisions, but in the end I truly believe that people do it for a greater cause. We are all made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions. If not then, perhaps we’re simply lost at the moment and we just need someone– a friend to be there for us to help us through what we are going through at the present. I want to believe that inside every person lies even just a spark of kindness that is only waiting to be ignited into a blaze of unfeigned love.

Stop being judgmental. Start being compassionate. Try putting yourself in their shoes first.

What really got me into this matter is the recent discovery of what this certain person I know of has been going through. The untoward impression of this person shifted instantly into a feeling of compassion. I realized that I hold no right to feel adversely towards this person for I hold insufficient knowledge about this particular individual– just as the world knows no better about me than myself. It actually feels good to understand a person more, even in that little sense. Despite having done ill towards you, having a little more understanding about the person sets the animosity aside.

 The world is hurting deep inside; the least we can do is drop the cold stare, tender a warm hug.

Dear God,

In Dear God, Personal on November 30, 2012 at 00:28

THANK YOU SO MUCH, LORD, FOR ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING THAT YOU HAVE BLESSED ME WITH.

There are times when I overlook all these wonderful things you have already given me— my really awesome and loving family; marvelous friends; the very home I am in with comfy beds, working faucets and fluorescent, and with food on the table; this opportunity being in one of the prestigious universities in the country; the talents you endowed me; the future ahead of me; and most especially this gift you have showered upon us which I bet, if not all of us then most of us, fail to acknowledge— this life. The mere fact that I am breathing now is absolutely enough to consider myself blessed, so thank you.

Now and then, I fail to recognize the fact that I am blessed even in the most simple ways. Help me, Lord to not lose sight of the things that really matter in life. I ask that you help me fill my heart with so much love, and so much hope, and so much faith. I never want to find myself wandering off from your love.

In Jesus’ name, I pray.

Amen.

I sorta, kinda, rather, fairly, somewhat, quite, in a way, like like you.

In Personal on November 23, 2012 at 22:32

Yes, I like like you. Oh, crap. Oh, boy.