Be Thou My Vision – Soul Winning Bible Studies and Autobiography

Hello Readers,

For a while, I have been debating if I wanted to share my autobiographies by Internet. At first, I had given them out in a physical format to support “Women to Women Ministries” (asked for a donation of about $12-15). Then I had kept desiring to print them out because it made the book more personal to the receiver (I would either sign them or say “I hope you receive a blessing from reading it”). But now, my heart believes that if I was to place it on the Internet, more will be able to read it in a faster rate and be encouraged.

This is what God has done for me. Please enjoy the reading. :)

Be Thou My Vision – Layout

A Review on Crisis Counseling Course – Summer II, Session One

Hello Readers,

What? It’s been a whole month since I wrote here last? I cannot believe it! O_O

I had to take a “mental break” after the “crash course” of Crisis Counseling. :P It was like being in the midst of a crisis while taking the course. So ironic, huh? Well, I wasn’t the only one that was using that saying; other classmates were saying they “were in a crisis.” The instructor had our adrenaline going often during class. It helped us to know how it felt to be within a crisis. I also liked how we had to do a six-hour on-site observation task: observe staff, customers, and self during six hours. After the observation, we were recommended to do self-care (ex: exercise, sleep, etc.). Although I liked some of the online modules more than others (the presentation of one was so daunting that even other classmates said it was “boring”) and although the class was intense because summer courses are tight on time (less weeks compared to about 12 weeks in a fall or spring semester), the information was valuable. I would recommend this course to those that are taking one of the two counseling tracks at Southern. However, If Southern continues to offer this course, I would recommend one to take Multicultural Issues in Counseling course first (only so one will “know thyself” prior to learning how to assist in a crisis situation).

Tried East Indian Dish from TV

Wow! Just realized this blog failed to post a year ago:

I made a vegetarian version of an Indian dish I saw on the Create channel. First, you start with a half of a big onion (diced) and most of the garlic cloves of one large garlic head (diced). You sauté both items (in cooking oil) with diced tomatoes. While sauté, add chicken, turmeric, cayenne pepper, curry, and a teaspoon of salt.

Once everything is nicely soft, add about a half of a medium sized can of tomato sauce. Stir it. When it boils, add some water. I would say to use about a half a cup of shredded ginger root (maybe less, depending how much you love the flavor).

Simmer for about 20-30 minutes. Enjoy! It was good. We ate it with rice. Even my eight year old liked it. :)

Double wow! I just realized a similar blog was published on December 11, 2013. It was just missing the website where good recipes can be bought. So I guess my iPod saved the failed post.

Introvert and Extrovert

Hello Readers,

I was hesitant the last time I wrote to add the other myth but the topic of introvert and extrovert came up in class tonight. So, in a way, I saw it as a “sign.”

Myth #3: Introverts and extroverts cannot get along with one another.

My Reflection: Not all introverts can get along with themselves so to exclude that only an introvert is unable to get along with an extrovert sounds ludicrous! XD In other words, to change the myth to something more convincing, just say people cannot get along with one another. Period. No everyone is going to like you. That’s a fact. Be it if you are an introvert and an extrovert doesn’t like you or if you are an extrovert and an introvert doesn’t like you; people just cannot get along with everyone. This is reality.

But what is an introvert and an extrovert? Is this some made up mentality or is there a science to the difference? What I had found out from one of my classes, that the science behind the difference is where each gets their energy. Extroverts need people to energize them (they seek sensory) whereas introverts need time to reflect and find peace in their solitude after a high sensory event. Introverts receive so much sensory that it is important for them to get some “chill time” before another high-strung event.

So which one do you think I am? (Hint: what time of the day is it that I am writing this blog? *Wink, wink*)

What are your thoughts about this “myth?” Do you agree or disagree? Please share your thoughts in the comment section of this blog. I’m looking forward to the feedback! Thanks for reading.

Crisis as an Opportunity

Hello Readers,

After some more contemplation and after reviewing a response to my latest blog, I decided to return to my blog to add an addition to what I had written the night before. I only wrote to advocate a cause and not to cause people to get all emotional. However, if certain emotions did come to surface, it may be wise to consider why. In other words, please don’t take it personal and see the big picture.

The way I see it, I see this as a national crisis (will explain why soon). As I have learned in one of my classes, the two Chinese characters that are used for the word “crisis” symbolizes “danger” and “opportunity.” I see all of this as an opportunity for growth as a community. Please note the word “community.” My intention for last night blog was for communities to note the crisis and attempt to create a change.

The reason why I state it is a national crisis is because, in America, we strive for individualism instead of collectivism. Individualism is about self-determination and independence. Although these are “good” notions, it can often damage relationships. For example, a wife or a husband that may desire their independence from one another may loss the concept of “us” over time. As a result, they may conclude that divorce is the only way to resolve their situation. Collectivism refers to what is important for the betterment of others. Collectivists value “saving face” of the community, family, cooperate, etc. And, once again, this sounds “good” but there are also some disadvantages in this area as well.

How is individualism “damaging” relationships? Is this a key in understanding the Bystander Effect I had mentioned in my previous blog? If I had to write a paper in Crisis Counseling, I think I would have chose this subject because it intrigues me. As a community, I desire to hear input on this situation and I also desire to give feedback (i.e. advocate).

For example, my dear school counselors (I say “dear” because the load that you carry is phenomenal and I deeply respect that), would it help to go into elementary classrooms (or have a school assembly) and speak about the Bystander Effect in words that elementary students would understand? Just to say “don’t ignore the ‘quiet ones’ who seem distant in class,” would that make a difference? Or, another approach would be to “speak” to the “quiet ones” and say “If you need someone to talk to, my office is located [say place].” Unfortunately, for my case, I was unaware that school counselors even existed until I was a senior in high school. And, even then, my conversation with the school counselor was not a positive one (she seemed to have lacked multicultural competence).

Please allow me a moment to share some insights that may benefit those who will be counseling various cultural backgrounds, personalities, etc. There are many “myths” about how different we are as people. I would like to focus on what are common:

Myth #1: Some people just want to be left alone.

My Reflection: There is a time when “some people” need to be alone but I have a hard time believing the same people want to be always left alone. For those that are Christians, God has encouraged us to “strengthen thy brethren” (see Luke 22:32) and do not neglect the assembly of gathering together (see Hebrews 10:25). There is power in association. Whenever I feel down, the last thing I need to do is to remain by myself for a long period of time because I am only left with my own perspectives (side note: having only one perspective of an event may cause more harm than good). But when I view events from the eyes of others, I am able to view the world differently (I think God for my male friends!). This reminds me of Ecclesiastes 4:12: “And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

Myth #2: “Leave me alone” means leave the person alone forever.

My Reflection: Often this is the cry of someone that has been hurt by too many people that he or she has come to “rock bottom.” I will be honest with you, it’s rather hard not to take this message personal. However, because of my previous reflection, I understand that this individual must not mean forever. So what should we, as members of an society, do with people who scream out this response? Definitely not leave them alone forever. But when will there be enough time to approach them once again?

The final myth that will be left up for dispute is one that I am fighting to write down. So I think I will wait to write this one down. Any thoughts on what I have written thus far? Please feel free to leave comments on my blog. Let’s have some discussions. :)

Losses and Gains

Hello Readers,

Loss is something that one is unable to avoid. It comes through various avenues: friend(s), family member(s), school(s), neighborhood shop(s)/grocery store(s), toy(s), car(s), house/home, key(s), computer(s), etc. What have you lost lately? Whatever it is, getting through the grieving process can often be tricky and painful. I was only a few days old when my parents moved me the first time. I was born in Germany because my father was in the military. Then we moved back and forth for a while. I had to say “goodbye” to classmates, schools, teacher(s), etc. a number of times. This may be one reason that I realize more than others that classmates come and go.

Whatever the reason is, as I listen to Angela Milller’s compositions that are on MySpace (yes, I said “MySpace”—how I missed how it used to look before it tried to look like Facebook): https://myspace.com/foreverisstraightup/music/songs, I try to wrap my mind on how losses can effect one for better or for worse. *Think, think, think*

I believe so much losses in my life has caused me to become numb. Although this is a coping mechanism, I would hardly say it is a helpful one. It causes me to avoid reaching out to “new people” in one respect (I connect more when it is one-on-one). Ever since I can remember, in my elementary years, I failed to connect with my classmates while in the classroom. A few would try to greet me and I would smile back and look friendly. But when they attempted to talk to me on the first few days of school, I would look at them as if they were crazy. I mean, I was like “I don’t know you and you are telling me all of this? Wait and warm up to me, please.” But, sadly, they would get the clue that I didn’t want to have anything to do with them so they would turn and talk to someone else near by. And, for the rest of the school year, I would be left alone with no one to socialize with. I remember the deep pain every time I find myself in a classroom. The pain of being excluded from the entire class is something that has traumatized me. Thank God for my two cousins on my father’s side (who were in the same grade as I)! They were the “Good Samaritans” who caused a few others to flock towards me whenever they, as in my cousins, would converse with me.

So why am I sharing my story with you? It is definitely not for pity. I ask for none. I just find it an odd phenomenon that often happens in classes in general and I (1) wonder why it happens and (2) it needs to stop. Those that suffer for a whole year or semester while the entire class goes on without connecting socially with the excluded individuals need to wake up and start a change. I believe many teen TV shows, like One Tree Hill (i.e. Jimmy) have tried to spread this message. The question is “Are we listening to the message?” Many that feel the pain of exclusion is unbearable often take the matter into their own hands and, unfortunately, feel there is no other way but to bring guns into the schools just to execute others prior to taking their own lives. *Sighs*

Is there something research can do to spread light into this matter? The case that comes to mind is Kitty Genovese. Bystanders looked on while she was stabbed multiple times. This phenomenon has been called the Bystander Effect (Bystander Apathy): https://explorable.com/bystander-apathy-experiment. According to this experiment, individuals may think that someone else will intervene or that individuals don’t want to “give off negative images to other bystanders.” Another conclusion has to do with fear; fear of either being rejected when offering one’s help or fear “being outranked by a superior helper.” Here is the video my professor showed in class about the Bystander Effect: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OSsPfbup0ac.

Does any of these conclusions apply to classrooms who exclude one or more classmates from the social bubble? And what is there for someone to gain during such exclusions? For me, I have learned that people come and go. Cherish the here-and-now and do not hold grudges with those who exclude you because most of them have no clue they are actually doing this act. People in general get wrapped up in their own bubbles that they often forget to look out and see who may need a “hello” every once in a while. And, above all, become the one who looks out and say “hello” to some one who looks lonely. Learn the social skills to perfect this special gift of looking out of your world. And for those who need to gain the “extra eye,” please just take the time to “look out,” “stand out of the crowd,” and don’t be afraid to say “hello.” For the person you may say hi to just may turn out to be your future best friend. :)