Out of focus, and back again

It’s hard to develop self-confidence when people don’t want to believe in what you have to say. I would often wonder why ask me when they don’t even bother taking into consideration what I said. I’m not asking to be acknowledged, just a little faith in me, because what I have to say is questioned all the time, at times, I don’t think I want to speak more. Most of the time, when they rundown the ideas, they would just repeat what I said. Pointing out that I had it wrong but turns out it’s the same thing, even the phrasing of the words. My ideas are usually ignored. I do not crave to be right; I just hope some space could be left for me. Yes, I felt down after all the explanations that I’ve made; I can’t seem to get anything right. Was it because my voice is too small, or isn’t very convincing? If it came from others, it’s much believable. Or maybe they just pay more attention to others? What’s sad is, when they have to say something, I listen all the way. Later I realized that it’s quite draining if they won’t listen to what you have to say but require you to listen to them.

But after reading His mighty words, I’m once again encouraged. Come to think of it, my words are often doubted, even before, but I didn’t linger on that and I was fine.

Proverbs 15:13 says, ”A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.”

Proverbs 17:22 says, “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”

Proverbs 15:30 says, “A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones.”

Proverbs 15:33 says, “The fear of the Lord teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor.”

Initially, this entry would be all about self-doubt and lack of confidence in myself. But after reading some entries on 蔡康永 Kevin Tsai’s book and reading the chapters of Charles R. Swindoll’s The Grace Awakening, I got inspired by their words of wisdom. Kevin Tsai pointed out that it’s not that bad to speak with the elderly, it’s a lot better than speaking with people who don’t mean what they say. He said that it’s okay if they are quite repetitive, chances are they are much experienced than we and could somehow find bright solutions from their stories. And he also warned about saying “I understand what you’re going through” when comforting a friend. Because no one could really grasp the pain one is feeling or how bad it really is for that person. It’s okay to be there, to give some advice but just not emphasize the “I’ve been there” part. His book is encouraging on how we relate to people, and how to say or not say the right thing at the right time. Then Charles Swindoll tackled the depth and gravity of Grace, which is grace indeed. It is given to us free as we are free to choose what to do with it. Through His guidance, we’ll find the right steps.

It got me into thinking, why we value so much how others act or behave when we can let them be. We can’t change them, what we can do is change ourselves. Charles Swindoll said, “We tend to clutch, not release…to put people in our frame and not allow them any breathing holes unless and until they accept the shape of our molds.”

So I want to share this piece below from The Grace Awakening (pp137-138), “Letting Go”:

To let go doesn’t mean to stop caring,
it means I can’t do it for someone else.
To let go is not to cut myself off,
it’s the realization that I can’t control another.
To let go is not to enable,
but to allow learning from natural consequences.
To let go is to admit powerlessness,
which means the outcome is not in my hands.
To let go is not to try to change or blame another,
I can only change myself.
To let go is not to care for,
but to care about.
To let go is not to fix,
but to be supportive.
To let go is not to judge,
but to allow another to be a human being.
To let go is not to be in the middle arranging all the outcomes,
but to allow others to effect their own outcomes.
To let go is not to be protective;
it is to permit another to face reality.
To let go is not to deny,
but to accept.
To let go is not to nag, scold, or argue,
but to search out my own shortcomings and to correct them.
To let go is not to adjust everything to my desires,
but to take each day as it comes.
To let go is not to criticize and regulate anyone,
but to try to become what I dream I can be.
To let go is not to regret the past,
but to grow and live for the future.
To let go is to fear less and love more!

I’m grateful for the blessing of God’s word, for reminding me how I was before when I just surrendered everything to Him. I didn’t bother if people heard me, I still listen to them and replied accordingly. That part of me is not easily harmed or hurt, always ready to extend a hand, putting myself in the shoes of others to see things from their perspective and not quick to judge.

Philippians 2:1-4 teaches me, “If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

2 thoughts on “Out of focus, and back again

  1. Elders are usually like that. (especially parents) because, I think, for them, they see us as innocent kids or someone who don’t know or know a little about the topic that we are talking about. That’s why discussing with them is sometimes tiring. At least, your points are getting through them somehow🙂

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