Are we stuck?

19:12:00 Karen Li 0 Comments

Sometimes we feel trapped, stuck in a world full of expectations. The world dictates what we wear, what we see, what we buy, what we feel, what types of relationships we should have. It's so easy to get sucked in and to feel like there is no way out. 

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Romans 12:2

I was searching online for a replacement laptop today. There were computers that were up to my specifications, 11-13", 2gb ram +, under 2kg, good reputation and warranty. Lenovo were selling them for around 800, but then the prettier sleeker sony and apples were alluring. They are way more expensive and the ongoing costs associated with buy warranty, protective gear will costs more. Do I need a pretty laptop? No. Do I want one? Yes. Why? Because of mass advertising and the promotion by owners of these devices. 

I see many young people today making decisions about their future. They want to be doctors, dentists, lawyers, investment bankers. All of our brightest want to go into business. Because that is where the money is. The honest will tell me that they want to be rich and successful. To have a sense of status in society. Again, this is dictated by society. By tv shows we watch, by feedback we get from other people. I love talking to young people about their dreams and aspirations, because you can tell, they don't really know what they want to do in their future, but they make something up, and then the story sticks, and then they start to believe it. I thought I wanted to be rich, successful. I thought I wanted to win awards. But none of these things satisfied. These were all traps. Now even the bible warns against being lazy, so don't get me wrong, I'm not promoting a lack of aspiration, just the motivation behind certain aspirations. 

In the same way, we might be looking for romantic relationships to conform to stereotypes. We look for a partner who has certain specifications. I was talking to a friend the other day about what they desire in a partner. Now this non-christian friend was extremely honest, they reported that their ideals was: that they have a steady income, that they look desirable, that they gave them a particular feeling and that they can start a family with. I then asked whether their current partner was up to standard. Nay, but they were changing the partner so that they would meet these standards. More commonly though, females from asian countries look for someone who can afford a house, a car, good jobs, good family background, etc. Again, it's what society tells us we need. A guy with an aspiration to be a fantastic stay-at-home dad is looked down upon, less so these days, but nevertheless, it's different. 

I attended a Christian-focused relationship workshop the other day, here are some points for discussion
- (my stats from abs) the divorce rate in Australia is 40%
- (my stats) in our parents days, 70% of people married had never cohabited, now 70% who marry cohabit first (either with this partner or someone else before)
- I should be in a dating relationship because I need to be loved and I want to love someone.
- Liking more than one person at a time is ok
- More experience with different relationships is desirable
- Casually chatting about deep and meaningful things with someone of the opposite sex (say on facebook, msn) is ok
- If things aren't going my way, I can be angry at my partner
- It's alright to have sex outside of a married relationship as long as it's consented
- You don't need to be financial independent to be in a relationship

The speaker suggested that these topics are worth serious consideration. 
If there is nothing different between us (as followers of Christ), and the rest of the world, what is the point? We should be seeking and desiring different things. 

From an earlier blog, I woke up this morning (about 4.30 again) with a song on my mind. There is none like you, no one else can touch my heart like you do. I can search for eternity long and find there is none like you.

You are incredible Lord, you know just what I need. I think for a long time, I have been struggling with two ways to live. I still wanted to be the lord of my own life. I wanted to do things my way, with my power. I have been trying to fill a void something that was still missing with my life. I tried to fill this with a lust of money ~ working incredibly long hours in three jobs while completing my undergraduate degree. This amounted to pain, sweat and tears. I tried to fill this void with shopping ~ accumulating more junk than my mother likes and things that I never need. I tried to fill this void with watching dramas ~ only to find I am lost in an unrealistic world. I tired to fill this void with knowledge about the world and knowledge about you~ but it's not enough to just know you, for even the bible says even the devil knows who you are. I tried to fill this void with friendships and relationships but it just wasn't enough. Nothing was enough.
There is truly none like you. A constant source of support. By my side during the wins and the losses. By my side on sunny days and when it rains. By my side on lonely nights. By my side when I get rejected. By my side when I am lost. By my side enough though I have sinned against people and against you.
Thank you lord for loving me FIRST. Even before I knew who you were, you loved me, cared for me, died for me, rose for me and lived for me.

So until next time, even if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can move mountains :)

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