When God set about knitting me together in my mother’s womb (Bible verse to come later); He probably had a smile on His face (verse to come later). It was probably a big smile, and at some other moments a tender one. He had an end in His sovereign mind as to what my destiny looks like, but He was creating a free spirit, an individual with her own quirks and fancies. He was probably shaking His head as he foresaw all the twists and turns and bumps in my journey, some due to others’ decisions, many owing to my own choices. I was His creation but He was bestowing on me a free will. And He knew the extent to which I would exercise that free will.
He knew the exact moment I would respond to the gentle nudge of His Spirit, to invite His Son, my Lord and Savior Jesus to come into my life. And He knew all the fine tuning that would be needed in that new relationship, before I would finally get in optimal sync with His leading and began moving into the purpose for which He has created me. The closer I walk with Him, the clearer the purpose will become – from a vague inkling based on what makes me tick, to the first tentative step that may lead to bolder commitments, and finally to that moment of clarity where the very specific reason for my life comes to light, so clear that there are no more doubts!
Help me get there sooner, Abba Father – because the safest and most joyful place to be is the center of Your perfect will. Anything less would be a sad compromise that I am not willing to settle for!!!!
oh my restless heart
I have found my God-sized dream
can’t do it alone
birds sing and windows glisten
in spite of Monday
Taking a step of faith is like walking into the fog. Faith requires only enough visibility for that next step ahead. And then another step. And another. Yet another. Until the destination is reached.
Faith is not directionless. It has an end in mind…but is not deterred by the absence of specificity and guarantee. All it needs is a blessed assurance that everything will be alright in the end.
It does not seek comfort in the familiarity of all that is behind, nor does it try to grasp what the next gust of wind might bring. It does not have to, because it knows that true safety can only be found in eternity.
And so, faith is at ease even in places where it does not belong.
This post is a response to today ‘s prompt: Fog
Thanks to Jerry and his origami florist start up, roses are now forever.
I’ve always wanted to write about the inspiring people I am blessed to have in my life — specifically the ones who defy the ordinariness of being human to chase after dreams that make life extraordinary. So when my friend Jerry gave me one of his origami roses as a birthday present recently, the idea of featuring his experience starting his own origami florist, Epicure Online, on my blog dawned on me. I am especially amazed that Jerry is now even using his origami skills to teach Math to some autistic children. Talk about making money and making a difference with our hobbies!
Me: So, tell us how it happened, this shift from semiconductor engineering at one of the world’s largest companies, to paper art start up.
J: When I first left engineering I wasn’t planning to start a paper art start up. It was more like I was tired and felt that I was going through the mundane. I felt that there had to be more to life than going through the typical routine. So I decided I wasn’t getting any younger and decide to take a plunge and try something on my own.
How did I start an origami florist? Well that was by chance. I was always a fan of origami. Always loved folding. It’s something I believe everyone can do. It’s an art that is systematical. If I follow the crease lines correctly I will get the desired pattern. The hard part is to decipher the crease lines.
So one Christmas I decided to give a loved one something special. A handmade bouquet of 24 roses. She was quite impressed with it and that started the whole idea of an origami florist. We believe that there would be many people out there that would like to have something special and personal to make important occasions more memorable.
One of Epicure Online’s latest bouquet designs.
Me: What’s the best thing about leaving your steady job for something as different and uncertain as origami?
J: I gradually develop a sense of tolerance for uncertainty. To a certain extent I am a control freak. I don’t really handle unforeseen circumstances well. Coming out on my own in more ways than one has humbled me to accept my limitations. I learned that while disappointments are part of life, you can not let that be the defining moment of your life. I learned to redefine my core believes and strengthen my faith. For me that is the most important learning so far.
Origami roses with inscriptions for special occasions.
Me: What’s the worst, or most difficult thing?
J: Ironically the hardest thing for me right now to deal with is also the uncertainty. While it gives me a new perspective in life. There is always the lingering question of “What if ?”.Peer pressure compounds this effect. While I understand that I am taking a minor step back to launch myself further it’s always test of will when people close to you ask if you are sane. That’s where your belief system comes in.
Me: What drives you to do what you do?
J: Time really goes by quickly if we don’t number our days. When I look at it there is only a limited time frame in life where we get to do the things we want in life. I believe there is a season for everything. For example, for me to take the risk to come out on my own to pursue my passion would not have been possible if I was younger as personally I would have not been confident enough, and if I was older I might not be able to tolerate the risk. Knowing that there is a season for everything I remind myself that this season too will pass and I must make the most out of it. Muhammad Ali said it best: “Don’t count your days, make your days count.”
The 24-rose bouquet that started it all.
Me: If you could pick one, which piece of origami are you the proudest of? Why?
J: Easy – the first rose bouquet I made. It started all of this!
Me: Describe your journey in three words.
J: Unbelievable, Spiritual, and Exciting.
This interview is conducted as part of the Daily Post’s weekly writing challenge:
and also because of my interest in delving into the thoughts of inspiring people who are living and chasing their dreams.
To hear when a pin drops
And see when a light goes on
On the inside
To let the clock just be
To smile at, for, because of, and despite
The one in the mirror
To just drift along
Flit like a butterfly in a garden
Empty of other souls but so full of beauty
The world is my oyster
My own best friend.
In my own skin
Though in a swanky high rise
I live not.
Of being me
The one and only me
In my own very league
There’s no need for yardsticks.
That I can bring
My inimitable unique selling point
I can leave
As my finger print.
Don’t live the lie
Have their own battles to fight
Be free, be you
And you are
Set for life.
When we mindfully and purposefully embrace the present, the future takes care of itself.
I woke up to a beautiful morning here in Penang, Malaysia – sunshine streaming through my window, birds chirping and water running in the fish pond – and realized, hey it’s already June!
I did a quick mental review of my 2014 thus far and noted that some of the things I wrote down in my prayer journal on New Year’s Eve are already coming true. Some have come true.
I’ve always believed there is power in writing things down. Clarity is so important – I am not an expert on how the mind works but I think when we make some things clear and specific to ourselves an imprint is made on our subconscious that will somehow steer us towards the right decisions and away from the wrong ones. Maybe that’s how we our instincts come about.
My guiding mantra for this year which I am so conscious of and take so seriously, is that I am where I am today because of the choices I made in the past. Some choices I applaud myself for and some I regret – so the biggest motivation and drive this year is to be mindful that what I do today will lead to where I will be tomorrow. This would be the advice I tell my younger self too if I could travel back in time.
So clarity and making conscious choices have made out pretty well for me so far. I decided to cut out people and habits that were toxic to me and made no apologies for that.
I feel purposeful, and there’s always this sense of urgency that comes from the gratitude of knowing that each day brings with it the opportunity to make the right choices to get to where I want to be. This way I am fully engaged in the present, even as I take steps that will lead to the future I want.
Carpe diem! Life is short so we’d better make it sweet.