clarity.

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The every so often “I Hate School” rant. Although I must argue, it’s more of an analysis than it is a rant. But either way, food for thought:

I hate the fact that in school, your hours get measured and degraded to percentages. Take for example, an eight page paper I submitted recently (of the many eight page papers aka ‘biggest wastes of life ever’ I’ve submitted this semester). I thought I did pretty well on this paper. I spent over 15 hours writing this here paper. 15 hours that could have been spent doing something so much more fulfilling and worthwhile. But instead, I spent it writing a paper (on the ever-so-fascinating subject of the history of quality television *YAWN) that will be read just once, judged, and tossed in the trash after I receive an unsatisfactory grade. 

I always joke that spending hours on papers is useless unless you get them published. You know why? I don’t mind spending hours or days on video editing because videos get seen. Because you can move people with them, you can inspire things, you can stir something among people. But an essay on the analysis of the history of radio and television? I almost don’t blame my professor for giving me such a bad grade because if I had to read a hundred of those, I’d want to shoot myself in the foot too. 

This makes absolutely no sense to me. Why on earth do I stay up so many nights writing senseless papers that add no meaning to my life just to get a grade tacked on to it? I wasted so many hours of my life just so that one professor can take a quick look at my work and never come back to it again. HAHA. I REALLY DON’T UNDERSTAND. Yet in this institution and every institution across America’s very flawed education system, I’ll be doing that again and again and again to become ‘successful’ by writing pointless essays that will somehow get me to where I’m told I want to be in the future. 

This always brings me to that one monkey science experiment. It goes something like this: 

There were five monkeys in a cage with a ladder standing in the middle of it. At the top of the ladder were bananas. Every time, a monkey tried to climb the ladder, the scientists would hose the rest of the monkeys with water (the monkeys did not like this).

So one day, they replaced one of the monkeys with a new monkey. Naturally, the new monkey tried to climb the ladder for the bananas. But as soon as he did so, the other monkeys started throwing rocks at the new one even though none of them were hosed for this particular event. So that new monkey now learned not to up the ladder because it will be stoned without knowing WHY it was wrong of him to do so because this new monkey had never experienced the hosing!

Eventually, all the monkeys were replaced with new ones who never got hosed one-by-one. Yet, these monkeys would still throw rocks at anyone who tried reaching for the bananas. They just learned and thought, “This is the customary thing to do whenever any monkey touches the ladder” without ever questioning WHY. Why were they not allowed to get the bananas? Because the initial test group got hosed? These new monkeys never got sprayed with water! 

I’m pretty sure I butchered it, but this experiment blows my mind. Why does this waste-of-life, inefficient, over-priced education system still exist? Blame the first test monkeys who never explained AND all the monkeys that followed that never stopped to wonder why. 

This rant also brings this up: 

"So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." 1 Cor. 10:31

I’m not sure how so many wasted hours and a demolished essay can bring glory to God, but I hope that this very emotional tumblr post has a better chance at that. Perhaps by highlighting that I am an ungrateful, whiny child who just needs to suck it up.

I am thankful for being so fortunate to be a student in Boston where having food on the table is not a concern, where I am blessed with awesome community, and where I’m always able to experience new things. But other things are not so clear as to how my time and effort could be used for anything remotely close to God’s kingdom or even for my own benefit. I just really don’t understand LOL. Enlighten me with the answer to this great mystery, God, so I won’t hate taking film studies classes so much. (This may sound sarcastic, but I’m totally serious). 

End rant.

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This song is so Cali. I just see beaches. And lots of driving with windows down. While going to the beach. And bonfires. And made-up bonfire songs. Smores. Friends. Sunset. In N Out afterwards. 

Oh, how I love the sweet, sweet state of California.

(Source: Spotify)

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I want summer. 16 more days of school. 25 more days til home.

I got a fortune cookie today. It reads, “You will have full contentment by summer’s end.” 

Rachel wants summer.

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A video introducing Cornerstone’s Praise Team for our fundraiser for new equipment! Yay to no more broken mic stands and new cables/monitors/whateverelseisbroken! :) A huge thank you to all those who came out and contributed! <3

(Source: rkimvideography)

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It’s so mind-blowing what God does with broken, inconsistent, unfaithful people. This morning I kept thinking, “Why? What could possibly drive God to want to use people like that? People like me?”

Every Saturday night, a few of the praise team members meet to discuss about a book we’re going over called Worship Matters and to spend time praying and worshiping together. In the chapter we read this week, Bob Kauflin writes, “God isn’t hiding from us, waiting to see if we’ll find the right combination to unlock his blessing. He is eager to work through us as we faithfully lead our church into a clearer understanding of his glory” (60). I shared with our book club that every Sunday that I serve on praise team, I get extremely nervous and jittery before we start. From the time Saturday practice ends to the time service starts the next day, I get so anxious and I pray with everything for God to take over my nerves and to help me focus so directly on him and not on the words or chords I’m playing. I almost never pray for Sunday worship throughout the rest of the week, but right before every Sunday starts, I freak out and pray like crazy for freedom in worship and for us as a church to be able to give true, wholehearted worship to God. And I hate the fact that I always “procrastinate” on this and that I leave this matter untouched until my nerves kick in. But without a fail, God so graciously shows me how faithful he is EVERY Sunday, and honestly, instead of praising him more throughout the week because of it, I started to fall back on this “clutch move” and held onto the hope that God would just show up every weekend if I prayed earnestly enough. And that was the “formula” or “combination” that I held so strongly onto for a while now. But to think that God isn’t waiting for me to trigger his presence or blessing through that one little prayer, but instead that he’s eager to work through me…. MAN! That is absolutely insane yet so amazing. How freaking amazing is that?! That despite the fact that I fail so hard at devoting myself to his word and even at living out the purpose he has for my life, that he would nonetheless use such a sinful, unstable person is just.. wow. And today during our prayer circle before service started, I felt what Bob Kauflin writes about. The feeling where you think, “MAN, I cannot believe I get to do this. I CAN’T believe we get to go up there to lead worship - what a mind-blowingly undeserved opportunity! I CAN’T BELIEVE WE GET TO DO THIS SO FREELY EVERY WEEK.” Dang.

And it’s so crazy how differently we work. The way I work is not always singing the right words or notes, not always being able to find certain harmonies, and always messing up guitar chords (in which case I just laugh to myself on stage haha). The way I work is not praying until last minute, putting off my QTs, shaking my fist at God, and spending most of the week complaining about work and school. But the way God works despite all this is amazing. He uses pitchy voices and wrong chords and broken strumming patterns and stubborn hearts and weak willpower and whiny, inconsistent, ungrateful, blinded souls to bless people, to speak, to heal, to touch, and to remind us of his love over and over and over again. How amazing is it that we get to be used by a God like that, and that we get to serve like that every week? 

I was so happy today that God brought me to Boston to meet the amazing family I have at Cornerstone. I complain about the weather and having to live here probably on a daily basis, but man, I was so happy today even through the rain and through little sleep to be at church and to serve with an awesome, God-loving team. During our morning prayer time, I looked through a lot of my old private tumblr posts, and it was crazy to see where I was just a year ago and how much I’ve gown since. Praise the Lord because he is good. And his love for us is furious. FURIOUS! 

So here’s to another week! Here’s to learning that every day is a Sunday, every day is an opportunity to live worshipfully. Every day is a day I could wake up excited to serve and to be used by God - maybe not through praise music all the time, but through making people smoothies, editing in the office, sitting in lecture, and doing homework in the library - every day and every minute is a minute that could be spent doing what we were made to do! I love how Pastor Danny put it today when he asked if we ever feel fuzzy or weird when we worship God. Because, YES! I do! He shared that we feel that indescribable connection with God when we do what we were created to do - when we praise and worship him. 

I’d like to feel that way all the time please hahaha. Thank you God for Cornerstone, and thank you for loving me ever more when I suck. Glory to you, all glory to You! You are so so worthy and we give you the highest praise!!

Sunday - March 30th, 2014