Risky Business

Jesus said, “Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!” (Luke 8:48MSG)

This morning, I came across this verse noted in a journal from four years ago and it was exactly what my heart needed to hear.

You see, I used to describe myself as one who doesn’t take risks. When I first moved to Arizona fourteen years ago, I came because it was safe. At that time, I had family who owned a home here so I had a place to land and if it didn’t work out, it would be easy to change course.

Over the course of the years that followed, I did all that I set out to accomplish as far as securing a good career and living comfortably.

In 2005, I made what was somewhat of a risky move by quitting my job to pursue medical school. I say it was only partially risky because I had evaluated my finances and felt secure in that regard with what I was setting out to do.

So with all determination, the risk of not getting into medical school wasn’t even a factor.

And that cost me everything.

This morning, I related to the precious woman in Luke 8 in a whole different light.

In the crowd that day there was a woman who for twelve years had been afflicted with hemorrhages. She had spent every penny she had on doctors but not one had been able to help her. (Luke 8:43-44MSG)

I spent twelve years in Arizona in pursuit of everything I hoped would fulfill me…only to come up short over and over again, and leaving me more desperate with each try…

And eventually I would have to ask others for help, which I needed to learn to do…but not only would I find that they could only do so much, but I would also find that, in some cases, promises would go unmet.

When finances were running low and the opportunity to do some innovative investing presented itself, I quickly asked, “where do I sign?” And just like that, the equity in my home and the proceeds of my 401k were in the hands of another.

When the terms of what I had signed up for were not being upheld, I sought trusted legal counsel to help…and let’s just say, that proved to not be so trusted.

Over the years, I’ve carried lots of shame for the poor decisions I made regarding my finances, namely my 401k.

Like the hemorrhaging woman, after 12 years, I had exhausted all options and was at the end of myself…

So I reached for Him with faith like never before.

But unlike the woman in the Bible, I wasn’t hiding after I did nor did my healing come instantly.

When the woman realized that she couldn’t remain hidden, she knelt trembling before him. In front of all the people, she blurted out her story—why she touched him and how at that same moment she was healed. (Luke 8:47MSG)

I reached for Jesus fully exposed and my healing would come in the experiences and adventures He would lead me on that followed this act of faith…

Jesus said, “Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!” (Luke 8:48MSG)

After the first risk, I can’t say it gets any easier because the stakes keep getting higher.

But healing and wholeness is always worth the risk.

Yesterday, I got a job offer. For a job I would have never imagined myself doing and one I didn’t apply for. (Okay, so some backstory is that I applied for a different one with this company but got a quick response that they were pursuing other candidates, so my resume entered their system that way.)

So I like to think that they chose me. Just like He did.

You didn’t choose me. I chose you. (John 15:16NLT)

And what have they chosen me to do, you ask?

Oh, I’ll be working for a financial investment firm helping folks in the area of investing and their 401k.

I laugh.

I don’t believe in karma or revenge.

I believe in the Redeemer and isn’t redemption sweet?!

He has sent redemption to His people; He has ordained His covenant forever; Holy and awesome is His name. (Psalm 111:9NASB)

In the eye of the Beholder

I had such a rich experience in Bangkok. And I’m pretty sure I’m in the midst of a post-Bkk depression…

And as the blues lift, I plan to write more about my journey… but for now, I want to share an unexpected gift I received during my time there. A photo therapy session from a new, beautiful and precious… and insanely talented friend. Though, the photos speak for themselves…

truth

asiamorphosis

honey brown

And this is what I wrote in response to her work:

Fearfully and wonderfully made. Yes, my soul knows this well.

I have been on an incredible journey over the last year. Lies have been exposed and the truth has set me free.

Growing up as an Asian-American, I did a better job of embracing the identity of the world around me instead of the identity within. Having friends who had blonde hair and blue eyes, and who the boys always seemed to gravitate towards, fed the lie that I wasn’t pretty enough, nor was I ever going to be…

Instances of the world around me rejecting my identity through racial slurs and even well-meaning comments made by friends didn’t help my cause.

And within my family, I’m the “smart” one. Second in birth order to the “beautiful” one.

Beauty runs skin deep. Yes. But there is freedom and healing in embracing all that you were created to be… inside and out.

I am embracing me. I am beautiful. I am smart. I have a heart that beats with deep compassion.

But above all, I am loved in spite of my beauty, intelligence and compassion. And this, my soul is beginning to know so well.

Please click here to hear Lucia’s heart and see all the photos. I am so stinking blessed.

My insanely beautiful and talented sister from another mister.