Monday, March 18, 2013

Walking on Water

It has been two weeks since I braved myself off to a new adventure here in Melbourne, but it seemed liked I have been here for two months already.  It has been a roller coaster ride.  I have my moments of ups and downs (well, it has mostly been downs but I try to pick myself up again).

Two weeks ago I embarked on this new adventure full of hope, full of confidence… Two weeks later, I find myself in the thick of my life’s greatest faith challenge so far.

My first week here was a shocker to me.

My first day in the big city left me lost and confused.  I tried to read the train and tram maps as best as I could but to no avail.  Somehow, I kept on taking the wrong train/tram or set down at the wrong stop. I asked for help from some people but they also ended up giving me the wrong information.   I found myself round and round, traversing back and forth in the same direction somehow.

In the end, I decided to go home from the city on foot.  I ended up walking under a 34-degree afternoon for almost two hours.  I have never felt more alone in my life.  But I held myself up while I was walking.  I had to be brave for myself.  I had no choice. At that time, being strong for myself was the only option I had. The Navigation App on my phone is my newfound best friend.

My first job interview with a recruitment agent was brutal.  No smiles from her, not even an eye to eye contact. There was no proper candidate care. She would cut me whilst I am talking and would not even care to know more about my personal motivation, goals and career aspirations.  All she cared about was my experience.  Fair enough.  But how about my potential?  If I am just judged based on my experience then I would not go to where I want to be.  I know I can do more than the chances that I have been given so far, if they would only let me.  The interview somehow made me feel that I was there just to fill in the numbers.

I really felt bad after that interview.  I treat people they way I expect to be treated.  My basic interaction principle is if you can’t help the person, at least don’t hurt them.  The goal is to maintain the other person’s self esteem.  If you can’t uplift his/her self-esteem, at least maintain it and not degrade it. 

But that’s the thing, the problem is me because I have set wrong expectations on other people.  At that moment, I encountered life’s teaching moment.  Just because I do not eat lions, I cannot expect lions not to eat me.  Truly I am in a lion eat lion world now.  But no matter what happens, I made a pact to myself not to change my dietary restrictions and stand up to my grounds not to eat lions.  After all, there are still far better alternative ways to win in this game. This all the more has challenged me to rise above the surface and prove to them that I can make it through the goal, despite of what they think.  In this game called life, I play fair.  But I play to win and so I will have to play very hard.

Every day realities were challenging my faith and putting my hopes to the test.  Admittedly, there were days that I acted like a coward and just cry to my heart’s content. So much so that Bestie and her boyfriend had to come and visit me on my first weekend here.  “Operation Saving Private cRhyanne”, so they said.  It was nice to see familiar faces in a foreign place.  But when they left, I was back on my own.  This journey, this battle is something I have to personnally face myself.  Thankfully, though I am not totally alone in this fight. I go back the One who led me here and His promises to me.  He is no man’s debtor. Surely, He will not leave me empty-handed.

I stepped out in faith and left a promising career in the Philippines.  I stepped out in faith a left a cozy and comfortable life in Adelaide.  I will continue to step in faith as I continue this journey in Melbourne. 

My two weeks here has reminded me of Peter’s experience when he stepped out of his boat and began his walking on water experience.  Initially, Peter did it successfully but when the winds came, he got distracted and removed his focus on Jesus, thus he began to sink.  I feel the same is happening to me. 

When I bravely resigned, I was bold, brave, full of faith and confidence. I felt unstoppable, as if I can reach the highest stars.  I felt joy, I felt peace.  But when I arrived here, the winds of the competitive job market realities had me distracted.  Instead of focusing on to God, His words, His plans for me and His promises, I chose to look at the bleak realities.  And where we put our focus us, gets to be magnified even more.  And so I succumbed to fear, intimidation, depression and hopelessness.  I therefore lost my ability to walk on water.

Thankfully, Peter’s story did not end in the part where he drowned.  He called on to Jesus and Jesus saved him.  This is a reminder for me that I fix my gaze back on Jesus and He will surely save me. When God calls us us to do something, He will be faithful to complete it (and even increase it).

I have not mastered my walking on water experience.  I am still treading through the waters very carefully. Calm waters do not make a skilful sailor or in this case a water-walker. There are moments that I am lured to the call of the winds.  Sometimes I take a glance (I try not to but still I do!) but I immediately remind myself as to where my focus should be.   I am weak but my God is strong.  With His help, I will be able to defy gravity.  Only through Him will I be able to make it to the other side of the shore.

Two weeks down, how much longer will I have to wait for the shore?... Now this calls for a lesson on patience.  How long will it take? …  As long as it takes until I have learned it well.  How long? …. Personally, I think this is one tough lesson to learn…  Are we there yet?


Patio Princess said...

Dear Chris and Anonymous,

Thank you for your encouraging comments. I accidentally deleted the comments in this post. My bad.

However, I have not forgotten your kind words and encouraging thoughts. Please do continue to pray for me that I may fight this good fight of faith and finish it well down to the very end.

Thanks friends!

Patio Princess said...
This comment has been removed by the author.