Thursday, May 7, 2015


The whole, very real concept of eternity has been heavily on my heart lately. It's easy for me, and I think many would agree, to see Heaven and the idea of eternity as a very faraway, and difficult to grasp concept. I for one often find myself viewing heaven and eternity as some sort of an end goal rather than something that is very real, and very present in every second of my life.
Eternity is not something that just happens to take form after death, it is already happening right beside us and all around us. In the spirit, eternity is very alive and in motion, though we may not perceive it in the flesh. Heaven and the Kingdom have been established, it has always been there, before anything, created by God the one, ultimate founder/artchitect/designer of... Everything that was and is and is to come. Heaven is happening, Heaven is moving, always. In our sleep, in our daily mundane affairs, in our sadness, in our elation, God, Jesus, His kingdom is perpetually, unceasingly in motion.
As someone who thinks about mortality a lot, and used to feel a lot of anxiety about the thought of it, this truth brought and keeps bringing me an immeasurable amount of peace. Eternity is a literal reality that walks alongside us, in every moment and facet of our existence. For any of you who feel lonely, we are never quite alone. Quite the contrary. Heaven is a vapor away from us, Jesus is a vapor away from us, rooting for us always. As I'm typing this out, Heaven is moving. As I take a drink of my water, Jesus is watching, all but a mere breath away.
All that separates us from forever with Jesus, is a small, small breath. That is how inconceivably close He is. One gasp of air, draws a line from our existence here to our flourishing existence in Heaven. Truly, death WHERE is your sting? Where, O death, is your victory? (1 Corinthians 15:55)
Eternity is not a remote, improbable approximation... Nor is it an end goal per se. Eternity lives and overflows in abundance of love and truth and reality, alongside us in every moment of our lives. God has never and will never stop existing. Eternity walks with us in this fleeting journey in our flesh. From the first breath to the last, eternity exists and anticipates us. God is so good, and His kingdom so real.
Knowing this brought so much peace to me, I hope it brings peace and joy to anyone else who reads this.

No Sugar Challenge Day 8-9 - 5/7/2015

I've been drinking black coffee, and yesterday morning I didn't drink any coffee at all to really transition into a full on vegan diet and man... I didn't realize how much that cup in the morning makes a huge difference. I was so tired yesterday and had to make myself a small cup this morning to wake myself up. Maybe I'll try to wean off coffee by limiting myself to two cups a week or something, and then eventually cutting it off completely.
My cravings, or lack thereof, have improved significantly. I don't find myself thinking about junk as much anymore and I look forward to my fruit and veggie smoothies every morning/night. My skin is also looking pretty clear... But that may just be because I'm done with my woman times. Anyway, everything is going really good. My body is adjusting very well, and my metabolism is CRAZY right now... In a good way. BRING ON WEEK 2!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

No Sugar Challenge Day 7 - 5/5/2015

We are at day 7 of the no sugar challenge. I woke up feeling pretty great. To my surprise, no cravings whatsoever for any processed sugary foods in the morning. I did an ab workout last night and I noticed I had a lot of energy. Usually I'm knackered about 15 minutes in, but I was going strong from start to finish. Anyway, this morning was great, had some boiled eggs. For lunch I had a green juice from Whole Foods and some pineapples. I also had some chicken and broccoli... Now it's that time of day again. Snack time. I'm starting to think about chocolates and candies right now, and to distract myself I started munching on some sprouted almonds and sunflower seeds. This is helping a bit, but man... smelling that nacho buffet in our work conference room is going to SUCK. The party starts in about 5 minutes and to be honest, I'd like to just hibernate and close my office door to stay way from the temptation, but I know I'll be okay. I watched "Hungry For Change" on Netflix last night, so I'm still pretty motivated. I'm hoping to maybe turn this no sugar, eventually into a vegan raw diet soon. Call me crazy, but I want to reset my body back to health, naturally. God designed our bodies to heal itself, and I really believe this. Everything God does/makes is good. If it's not good, it's not from Him. I digress...
Time to head off to the Cinco De Mayo party. Pray for me.

Monday, May 4, 2015

No Sugar Challenge Day 6 - 5/4/2015

Had some boiled eggs and my green smoothie for breakfast this morning. Feeling pretty tired and out of it today. Walking past the candy corner near my office today was especially brutal. We have a Cinco De Mayo celebration in the office tomorrow with my VP's "famous margaritas" and a nacho buffet. Not having any of that is going to be another level of sadness. If anything, this challenge is shedding light on the crap that I used to eat without even thinking twice. I'm THAT person that checks the labels on everything at the Whole Foods now. Now that I see the refined and processed junk that is hidden in everything, it's no wonder cutting sugar off is so difficult.
My brain is kind of learning to sublimate now. Not that I'm not craving cookies and chips, but along with that I'm also really craving one of my green smoothies right now. Before, it used to be the cookies and chips only, and I'd force the green smoothie down my throat. Looking forward to this day being over... It has been a long Monday... And I need some rest especially if I'm going to practice all that self control tomorrow. Nacho buffet... Seriously?!??!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

No Sugar Challenge Day 4-5 - 5/3/2015

Day 4: Started the day off with some egg white omelettes and a green smoothie for breakfast. After a lovely hike we had some plain acai bowls without granola or honey, and for dinner we hit up our local vegan restaurant "Green Temple." We both are doing pretty good, having mild cravings for things like boba and chips, but we're managing. Towards the end of the night, I started having some strong cravings for junk. I picked up a banana and that helped a bit, but I went to sleep pretty disgruntled.

Day 5: My women time began this morning so my debilitating cramps distracted me from my sugar cravings for a bit. After Midol kicked in, I made myself a green smoothie and lied back down to try and ride the cramps out. Towards the afternoon, I made myself another smoothie, this time with blueberries and blackberries and had a vegan wrap for dinner. Cravings for cookies and chips and things are still there, but what I want most is some sweetener in my iced coffee. :( Sigh. Bring on day 6!!!

Friday, May 1, 2015

No Sugar Challenge Day 2 - 3

Totally forgot to post yesterday, mostly because I pretty much ate the exact same thing as I did on Wednesday.
I feel the same... Maybe a little more energetic. I did wake up yesterday morning thinking about sugary cereals though. That was weird. I also had a dream about binge eating candy... It's like I'm quitting drugs.
My cravings aren't so bad yet. Not really thinking of sugar much during the day. The hardest time is around 3pm because that is usually my snack time at work. I always pick up a candy bar or a bag of chips, so that time of day gets kind of depressing. I had an egg white spinach omelette for dinner last night, and made myself a green smoothie and hard boiled eggs this morning. Still going strong. Excited to see how I start feeling in a few more days!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

No Sugar Challenge Day 1 - 4/29/2015

Today was the first day of my no sugar challenge. I had a spinach/kale/banana smoothie in the morning with some chia seeds, and a mix of chicken, onions and asparagus for lunch. When I felt like snacking, I ate a banana, and later on in the day I had some grapefruit. That sufficed for about an hour and now I'm hungry again. I don't have any wacky cravings or anything, but I've got into such a routine of snacking around this time of day (3pm-4pm)... It just feels weird that I'm not grabbing for something.
Overall, I feel pretty normal. A little tired, maybe a little bit more grumpy... Some Oreos sound so good right now... Ugh. Gotta snap out of it. My motivation is still high, especially after watching Fed Up, so I'm excited to see how I feel in a week. I'll be home from work soon, and will probably make another smoothie for dinner. Sheri, I hope you're hanging in there, too!

Monday, April 6, 2015


Matthew 7:6 "Do not give dogs what is scared; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces."

Lately,  my quandaries have been centered around my identity, or lack thereof. I've always felt such a lack of solidity when it came to addressing my identity... And I'm using identity as an umbrella term... My overall, general, innermost self-hood has always been so malleable, and I didn't realize I had a problem with that until just recently. For example, my standpoints on anything are never one way. I scarcely get into arguments because I never really have a passionate one-sided outlook on things. I'm not even sure if I have a favorite color. Optimistically, I can say that makes me open minded, but my pessimist self just tells me that I don't have a firm knowledge of who I am or what I believe. That is until recently...
I've always found it extremely difficult to open myself up to strangers. I tend to see myself as a burden on another's life and bottle things up to myself to avoid adding onto their load. I bite my tongue in a lot of situations to appease another person, and because I wouldn't even know how to stand up for myself in the first place. How could I, when I wasn't even aware of my own identity?
But God gave me my moment of clarity. I recently faced a situation where I either needed to stand firm in my beliefs in God, or once again compromise my self-hood and perpetuate this continual self deprecation on my lack of identity, which is detrimental to my relationship with God. Sick of my teetering faith, I made the leap and stood firm in my faith, even if that meant upsetting the other person, and in that moment I realized it. That is my identity. My faith, and my beliefs in the Lord make me who I am. He gives me love, hope and strength, and also identity... And every time I stay firm in Him, my identity becomes a little more solidified. Every time I say no to sin, and yes to Jesus, I learn more about who I am, and who I was made to be. We just need to have the courage to say Yes more. It can be scary, but the outcome is so worth it. He's worth our yeses, isn't he? Everything we could possibly need and more is in the Lord...
For so long I've been throwing my pearls to pigs. Teetering rather than standing firm in my faith... And all that has done to me is leave me feeling empty and rootless. When you give the dogs what is sacred, you lose a piece of yourself and that perpetuates this unhealthy need to find a brief, impermanent fix to fill that void. God is not holding a whip ready to lash at you at every mistake you make. He sees your slop, and is waiting with a clean robe for your back, rings for your fingers, and sandals for your weary feet. This is the God I'm saying yes to. The God who gives me identity.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Bigger Picture

I am a fearful person. I often find myself caring too much about what people think about me. That fear affects the things I choose to say, the way I act, the things I do, etc. I always see people doing amazing, passion filled things on a daily basis, and I think to myself "that'll never be me." When I get into this mindset, I often feel guilty for being such a useless person to God. I also get existential and question God if He really did make me for a reason, and if so, what reason?
Tonight, God put on my heart that He is the bigger picture. I remember hearing on the radio, a man, speak of his story of when he became a christian. He started seeing the world in a different way, and realized how bleak, violent and ugly the world around us was. He said to the Lord, "God... Why don't you DO something about this?!" And God said to him, "I did. I made you."
We need to look at the bigger picture. This is ALL for Him. God is the bigger picture. We were all carefully, and fearfully made. Even before we were in the womb, He, the Creator of the universe, knew us. Let that sink in. God doesn't make mistakes.
"The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises. The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again." - Ecclesiastes 1: 5-7
Just look at the way God made the world. The sun, the wind, the ocean... they work in perfect unison because they were made by the Creator.... For us. The world looks so big, but we are bigger. We were made to show the world who Jesus is. It's hard to see this when we get consumed by the busy microcosm that is our lives, but we just need to stop for a second, take a breath and look at the bigger picture.
It takes passion to be a follower of the Lord. And I'm only human, so fear discourages me on a daily basis, and the enemy tries to tell me that I'm not part of God's plan. But I was FEARFULLY and CAREFULLY MADE, and HE KNEW ME BEFORE I WAS IN THE WOMB. He will never leave me nor forsake me, so long as I have love and faith, fear will not hinder me. Without Him, I'm lost. I'm freefalling into my destruction. I've tasted of His love, I've seen His heart for me. There's no going back into normalcy after that. THIS is my normal. This should be the world's normal.
It's easy to feel small. But we're all part of the bigger puzzle piece, and we're all essential for its completion. Use me for Your glory, Jesus.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Your Will for Me

God knows. Whatever it is you're going through, wherever you are at in your life, He knows.
I've had a packed schedule these past few weeks. Even when I'd feel my spirit tug at me to spend time with my Savior, I just kept going on with my own strength. Next week will be my first official week in my new position at my job. I've been feeling very restless because of this. Is this what God wants me to do? Is this where God wants me to be? Does He see me right now? Did He make this happen or did I just do this on my own strength? Can I do this? Am I too young? What if I fail?
On top of all this doubt, I started getting a horrible migraine a couple days ago. I woke up this morning in tears because it was so painful, and nothing was helping. No medicine, no amount of rest was helping the pain. I was feeling pretty bummed because I was supposed to go out with a friend, but that friend reached out to me in the morning saying she was not feeling well either. I was feeling horrible AND my plans got cancelled. If that isn't a sign to stay home and just stop going going going for a second, I don't know what is.
I woke up with the following lyrics in my head this morning: "What can make me white as snow, what can make me white as snow." I finally listened to the tugging of my spirit and fell into God's arms today. I ran to Him today. I asked the Holy Spirit to show me of any transgressions I needed to repent of, and I repented. I thanked Him for His mercy. I felt Him reassure me that it is no accident, where I'm currently at in my life. He knew me BEFORE he formed me in my mother's womb. It was silly of me to think that I somehow got to where I am on my own. My feelings of self doubt were draining me and God restored me. When Jeremiah felt afraid and unprepared what did God tell him? "I am with you to deliver you." And when Moses felt afraid and unprepared what did God tell him? "But I will be with you." -- "Who made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the LORD? Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak."
Jesus made me clean today. He is the fire that burns but does not consume. Everything else in this world burns, and destroys. God burns, yet gives life. My feelings of inadequacy are not uncommon. Even Moses and Jeremiah felt inadequate. But the principle of the matter is that God is the one that appointed them. They did not do what they did on their own, they were appointed by the great I AM. Bigger picture. We always tend to focus on the microcosm that is OUR lives, when we need look at the Macro: God's plan.
God is with me. God is with you. You're not where you are by accident, or by your own strength. He knew you before you were formed in the womb, think about that for a second. Your life is not by accident. Run to Him. His arms are spread wide. He wants to catch you. Fall into His arms. He's got you and He'll lead you every step of the way. Just run to Him.

Friday, January 23, 2015

My Hike to the Jim Morrison Cave

We came, we saw, we conquered the elusive Jim Morrison Cave.
I think the first time I had ever heard about the cave, was through a youtube video. I watched a beauty guru talk about her favorite hikes in Los Angeles, and this Jim Morrison cave happened to be the one of them. The shots of the cave were stunning and as soon as I finished the video I knew this was something I had to check out myself. So, at the inception of 2015, my adventure partner and I decided to make this hike one of our resolutions of the year.
We conquered the hike on Saturday January 10th 2015. The weather was nice throughout the week, so we thought "why would Saturday be any different?" We were wrong. We chose the one day out of the week that it decided to POUR from sun up to sun down... But we were too set on going to turn back from a little rain. So we started the long drive to Malibu, and took the freeways instead of going along PCH which in retrospect, would've been a much better idea. If you go down the coast (we were coming from Redondo Beach so Northbound) keep going until you hit Corral Canyon Drive. There is a gas station and a traffic light so it's hard to miss. Take a right on Corral Canyon Drive and go to the VERY TIPPY TOP until the road turns into a dirt path leading to a fairly large lot. The drive up this hill is very windy and swirly, and it seems never ending so drive slowly and enjoy the view. Once you get into the lot, you'll see a few different trailheads connecting to the lot, one called "Castro Motorway Bulldog Motorway." This one does NOT lead to the Jim Morrison cave, nor do any of the trails attached to the lot. We learned this the hard way. We went up and down, over and under all of the trailheads that connected to the lot in the pouring rain and were SO ready to throw in the towel until we saw two guys walking in from the lot entrance. It was an extremely cold and rainy day so these were the first humans we had encountered that entire time. With their guidance, we found out that the entrance to the trail that lead to the cave was not connected to ANY of the trailheads in that lot. If you park in the lot, you need to walk out towards the entrance, and walk down the actual fire road, which is the road you drove UP to find the lot, and eventually you'll come to a trail entrance titled "Backbone Trail." This is the one. You walk up this trail for 15-20 minutes, and you'll come across the notorious circular rock formation that everyone posts pictures of. If you see this formation, it's a dead giveaway that you are in the right place. As much as my friend and I wanted to add a rock to the circle, we were so exhausted that we just headed straight for the cave. If you've walked all the way to the rock formation, you've gone too far. The cave is nestled inbetween some bushes and shrubbery BEFORE that distracting spiral of rocks. To the left, before the spiral, there will be a pointy rock structure, that really doesn't look like much, but that's it. That's the cave. There will be a vague small path that leads the way to this structure, and walk slowly because I got pretty scratched up from all the bushes. Once you get close enough to the rock structure, you'll see all the graffiti leading to the cave entrance, also known as the "birth canal" (gross). It's a tight squeeze, and it's dark in there so make sure to throw a stone into the entrance before you head in, in case there's anything creepy crawly nesting in there. Climb your way in and pat yourself on the back because you've found the infamous cave where Jim Morrison allegedly had his acid trips, wrote his music, and carved a skeleton into the base of the cave. Graffiti covers the walls of the cave so it's quite a sight to see. You apparently get an excellent view of the San Fernando Valley from the cave, but since we went on a rainy day all we got a view of was some thick, wet fog. But it was still worth it.
All in all, despite going on the wrong trails a couple of times, the overall hike was beautiful and definitely worth checking out. Learn from my mistake and CHECK THE WEATHER before you go. Pack some water and a light snack and have yourself a little picnic in the cave. I really don't know how my friend and I persevered and hiked our little butts off for like 6 hours. God was definitely with us on this trip. Good luck to any of you who decide to take on this hike. I hope this post is helpful. God speed!
The "Birth Canal"
Inside the cave
Jim's little skelly