Welcome, 2017!

Hey, everyone!

Happy New Year! I hope y’all had a beautiful Christmas-y season! I kept telling myself to write a Christmas/New Year post, but I was literally swept away with the tide and every time I got myself set to blog, something happened. I haven’t heard any news of what to blog about in my daily worships in the OLGMC (over-sized lime green moon chair), so I’m still waiting for a good topic. I know I’ve been MIA for a month, but I can tell the Lord’s cooking up something good to teach me, so sit tight. Also, the Legolas Cosplay Tutorial is just about finished being cooked up, so I’m excited! Getting ready for POTC in May, guys and I’m debating whether or not Beauty and the Beast is happening in March. I’ve got my fifteenth birthday next month on the thirteenth, so totally stoked! I’ll keep you guys posted, so stay tuned…God has got some good stuff he’s gonna divulge this year! Yippee-kai-yay (LOL, Mom)!

In Christ,

Emily 🙂

Advertisements

Let Us Pray

“I would rather die than do something which I know to be a sin, or to be against God’s will.”

– Joan of Arc


Dear friends,

A few weeks ago (November sixth and the thirteenth) was the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. I received an email from Blog for Asia on the twenty-first of November imploring me to write a post and make my readers aware of the intense persecution followers of Christ face in countries around the world. I haven’t written a Blog for Asia post in a while, for which I regret. But, I couldn’t let this one go. It has been literally pounding in my heart and has not been silenced ever since I received the email.

unnamed-1

So, I read a story.

It was a story that was not meant to be kept to oneself. It was a story meant to be shared. It was the story of a man. A man imprisoned for believing in the one true God.


His name was Roshan*. As a boy, he called himself a Christian, but never truly entered into a personal relationship with Christ. Despite this, he became the president of his youth group and the secretary of his church. In the village that he lived were a group of rebels who put an impending danger upon the hearts of all the villagers, including Roshan and his newlywed wife, Lalasa*. They fled to a village one hundred fifty miles away. In this village, Roshan and his wife became the parents of a son and a daughter. With more mouths to feed, Roshan was overwhelmed. He felt the need for a change.

When Roshan’s brother, Aran*, came home on break from Bible College, he would tell his brother often of the love Christ had for him. Suddenly, Roshan, along with his family, knew what change needed to be made. Roshan enrolled in Bible College. While there, he listened to many missionaries share their stories of the field. The more and more he listened to them, he too wanted to be a missionary and put his life on the line to share the love of Christ with others. That was exactly what he did.

He became a missionary and moved to a village. However, he was completely unaware that the same members of the rebel group he had fled from many years ago were scattered among the inhabitants of this village. But still, he went.

During the first year, he and his message were mocked at and shamed. It wasn’t until the year had passed, that Roshan’s endurance paid off. His ministry began to prosper and lives were changed. He began construction on a church.

Midway through the construction of the church, falsehoods about Roshan began to spread. Unknown to him, many said he was a member of the rebel group that resided in the village. While at the grocery store, Roshan was taken by police, asked questions, and before he could realize what was happening, was thrown into a cell. Lalasa continued construction on the church whilst her husband was away and frequently went to visit him.

While in prison, Roshan ministered to his fellow prisoners and began a prison ministry.

After two and a half years of life behind bars, Roshan was liberated. Him and Lalasa haven’t ceased to support and uphold their community in Christ. They are very aware of the risk they take, but they are even more aware that what they believe is worth any persecution they could ever face.

an-unearthly-courage-2

*Names of people and places may have been changed for privacy and security reasons. Images are GFA stock photos used for representation purposes and are not the actual person/location, unless otherwise noted.

What do you feel? I know after I read Roshan’s story I felt almost ashamed. The price of Christianity is so much higher in other places in the world than it is here in America. The consequences of Christianity that millions face include shame, public embarrassment, called a lunatic, torture, and death. It made me think of the story of Joan of Arc.

One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying.

– Joan of Arc

Now, you must know that Joan of Arc is my very favorite female figure in European history. Called by the age of thirteen by God to lead the people of France to freedom from the people of England, she was burned at the stake for witchcraft and heresy by the English at the age of nineteen. She triumphed victoriously and had the prince/dauphin of France crowned King, just as she said she would. Soon after she was burned, the Hundred Years’ War ended and France was free from English force.

20161202_153229

I feel that Joan is my very best friend, and when I heard what modern folks say about her, I wanted to avenge her. Today, Joan still burns on the stake of Hollywood, society, and history. Many make her look like a superstitious, raving lunatic who was never chosen by God at all but coincidentally.

It’s stories like Roshan’s and Joan’s that puts our lives into perspective. I was chosen for this task: the task of making my readers realize the excruciating and horrifying truth: millions around the world on this very day are tortured and imprisoned for their faith. They are mocked, laughed at, and made helpless.

Friends, it is our duty to pray fervently for our brothers and sisters who are persecuted daily for their faith. For that is who they are: our brothers and our sisters who live a world away from us. Men like Roshan are our brothers and women like Joan are our sisters. As their Christian family, we have an obligation to support them and stand with them in prayer. That is just what the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church is all about. Yet, it should not just be observed for two days in November, but everyday, for everyday they suffer.

Guys, I know I’m not usually this gloomy, but this must be something we all should be aware of. I urge and beseech you immaculately to pray regularly for our brothers and sisters who endure indescribable plights for the cross of Christ.

Join me in praying for at least five minutes a day for the persecuted brethren.

They are people just like you and me. Burning inside with a fiery passion for Christ, yet they are in danger for proclaiming it. What if that was me? Wouldn’t I be comforted to know that somewhere, across the ocean, a Christian just like me is praying for me and my family.

Let us pray,

Emily

Legolas Cosplay Photoshoot 2016

Ahhh, peeps. Soak it up, ’cause here it is! I finally got to it: The Official Legolas Cosplay Photoshoot. The tutorial will be released in a few days/next week, so be prepared for more awesomeness. Other than that, soak up these photos, people. Have a Happy Thanksgiving, too! P.S. I couldn’t use my arrows for this photoshoot just because the park authorities say you can’t carry without a permit. So, I don’t wanna break the law 🙂 . Anyway, enjoy:

 

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_5

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_9

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_6

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_8

 

 

legolas_cosplay_2016

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_3

When your twin gets annoying… 🙂

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_2

XD

legolas_cosplay_2016_11

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_12

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_7

 

legolas_cosplay_2016_4

 

Legolas Greenleaf Cosplay: Complete 🙂 Thank you, Lord, for cosplay.

Farewell for now (Namárië),

Emily 🙂

 

The World is Ahead

 

joshua-for-president-exx91w

Property of Joshua Presidential Propaganda Campaign 2016

 

 

joshua-wants-you

Property of Joshua Presidential Propaganda Campaign 2016

Hello, everyone!

I am currently organizing my little one-year old brother Joshua’s Presidential Propaganda Campaign! Oh, didn’t I tell you? Yes, he’s running for President! As our commander in chief, he promises that he will give abundant rights to babies including the right to vote! He is very passionate about his cause. He feels he has a voice that must be heard.

Just kidding.

Except for the part about having a voice that wants to be heard (ask me later about him singing in church XD )


Change.

It happens to the best of us. We all must experience change.

Look at today: our country is having a change in leadership! Right now as I’m blogging the TV displays a part red, part blue map of our beautiful country, Wolf Blitzer rambling on and on about electoral votes, and John King poking and prodding at a map and circling key areas for the presidential nominees. In the midst of it, we prepare for a change in our country’s leadership that will endure for four long years. Even in my own life, change has occurred.

If you don’t know already, Colorado is one thousand miles away from my current location. I have moved on in life as I wrote about in my last post Carried on to CompletionI won’t say to where I have moved, but I will say this: it is hard. I miss it dearly, of course. Things are different, which is imminent. Change cannot be what it is without differentiation.


It began a few nights ago. I looked out the window and gazed as far as I could; to where the sky meets the land. “Perhaps that is where Colorado lies…how I miss it…” I pondered, reminiscing and remembering the tall, majestic mountains, clothed in forests of Ponderosa Pines and piercing the vibrant, clear blue sky that is only so brilliant at the high altitude of seven thousand feet. And Pikes Peak, oh, America’s Mountain. It’s bare summit sprinkled with snow even in summer, looming its giant shadow over Colorado Springs like a mighty guardian. How I miss it.

I looked out the window for some time until I decided that it was time to start reading my book. I picked up the novel titled The Sign Above the Door written by William Canfield; originally published in 1912. I began reading and read until my eyes grew tired and until the clock read 9:30.

I rubbed my eyes and reluctantly realized that I had forgotten to clean my eyes of mascara. I wasn’t sure if I had made much of a mask on my face, but I didn’t mind much. I strode to Mom and Dad’s room, hoping to find comfort as I told them of how I missed Colorado dearly. “Mom, I…I just miss our land. The five acres. I just miss it.” She smiled that sweet smile of hers and looked at me with compassion. “I know,” she answered. “But God has wonderful things for us here! This is where he brought us, isn’t it? I know, I miss the land too…and the mountains.” I could feel tears welling up in my eyes at Ma’s words and I knew that if I were to speak a word, my voice would crack. “I know,” I said in reply. Then, breaking the silence, she laughed and said,”Hey, what happened to your eyes? Did you do that on purpose?” My hands went to my eyes and suddenly I remembered that I had smeared my mascara! I looked in the mirror and realized that I had been transformed rapidly into a human raccoon. I laughed and a tear slid down my cheek. Dad smiled and so did Ma. I hugged both of them and my heart eased. “We’re going to be ok, don’t worry, Em.” I smiled, too and looked up at each of them, my eyes behind the mascara mask glittering. Dad patted my back and I bade each of them a good night and lumbered off sleepily to bed…making a stop at the bathroom first to wash off the smeared eye makeup.

I slept and thought more of Colorado until my eyelids couldn’t hold themselves up anymore and I drifted off to sleep.

BEEP, BEEP, BEEP.  I lifted my sleepy arm and slammed it down hard on the alarm clock. Snooze, you should know, is my favorite button on alarm clocks :).  

I waited for around ten minutes before sitting more like slouching up in bed and rubbing my eyes that looked more like slits. I picked my clothes from my dresser drawer, grabbed a towel from the closet, and took my shower.

When I emerged, dressed, makeup’d, and bright eyed ‘n’ bushy-tailed, I plopped down in my over-sized lime green moon chair and picked up my Bible. What I read brought me such comfort and reminded me of my conflict the night before.

 

Then they said to Him, “Why do the disciples of John fast often and make prayers, and likewise those of the Pharisees, but Yours eat and drink?” And He said to them, “Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them; then they will fast in those days.” Then He spoke a parable to them: “No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear, and also the piece that was taken out of the new does not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved. And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.’”

Luke 5:33-39

My favorite part of this passage was verse thirty-nine. “And no one…immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.'” I felt Christ showing me what I say. I have been given new wine and I don’t desire the new for I think the old is better. And now, the wineskins of Colorado are old. I cannot try to put my new wine in the old wineskins. I must put my new wine (this new life) into new wineskins, leaving the old wineskins behind for good.

My Dad pointed out a beautiful key fact about new wineskins. The new wine does not settle in the skins immediately. It takes a long time for the wineskins to become flexible and usable. Just like with me; I’m taking time to become accustomed to my new life.

And since that morning devotion, I’ve looked at things in a different light. No longer do I miss Colorado, and I thank God for changing my heart. I have moved on and advanced in ways I never could in Colorado!

Home is behind me, and the world is ahead. I’m ready to advance.

In Christ,

Emily 🙂

P.S. Half of this post was written yesterday during the election…please note that I am very aware Wolf and John are no longer rambling and pointing. 🙂

P.P.S. I will give you a hint as to where my family and I have moved: the state is in the USA and none of its borders border a major body of water (i.e. ocean, sea, bay, etc.). 😉

P.P.P.S. Over the last few weeks since my last post, it’s kind of been a while. I’ve missed you guys 😛 . I figured that y’all deserve an update. Especially regarding October 31st and the way I COMPLETELY recreated my Rey costume (for the 31st and for Rogue One).

First and foremost in regards to cosplay: Rey. It has been revamped. So, I am going to delete the post Star Wars Cosplay: Rey until I modify it to fit my recent fixes (just like I did with Tauriel in 2015…I’m actually considering recreating Tauriel again). It is a much more professional looking costume, but don’t worry, that doesn’t mean harder to make. 🙂

Here’s a couple of pictures for y’all:

20161031_092354

20161031_171345

20161031_171353

It may not look like much difference, but it was much cleaner and preppier than the original. The arm wraps I had to postpone because I only had three days (Fri, Sat, Sun) to revamp it. I also managed my hair much better:

20161031_092059

Here’s a couple pics we took as a family the day of Harvest!

20161031_173326

Me and Ally being dorky…that’s my lightsaber up in the top right corner…it wanted to be in the picture, too. Yes, I believe lightsabers have feelings 😛

 

20161031_090741

Ma and Dad: Batgirl and Batman!!!

 

20161031_171648

Tiger Josh

 

20161031_171158

Allison: Wore the Eowyn Dress I made last year…

 

20161031_173911

John: Spidey-man!!!

 

My totally awesome Darth Vader Pumpkin!!! Yes, I did carve that myself :)

My totally awesome Darth Vader Pumpkin!!! Yes, I did carve that myself 🙂

Ok, so that was more than a few :P.

 

Anywayyyy, I have really big news for you, guys!

THE LEGOLAS COSPLAY PHOTOSHOOT IS HAPPENING THIS WEEKEND!!!!!!!

My elf ears came in the mail, I’m going to the party/costume superstore to buy some spirit gum, my mom has told me that this weekend we’re heading up to the mountains to take pictures!!! I am so stinkin’ pumped! I have been working on my elf-hair stylist savvy-ness! Savvy?

tumblr_lvnoxv62cl1qjhjdwo8_r1_250

Dork Alert 😛

Ahem.

Also, some more big news: regarding Mr. Dork Alert. Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales comes out May 2017!!! So, forget what I said about making Elizabeth’s navy costume, I’m actually doing the idea I had originally: Elizabeth Swann/Will Turner. It’s going to be so awesome; I’ll keep you guys posted 🙂 . The costume itself is generally going to look a lot like the one she wore on the island in Dead Men’s Chest (is it Dead Man or Men? Whatever). This one:

ab74d3d347ac3737bcd142f90398b662

 

Sorry, folks, but that’s the best one I could find. There simply isn’t a full body picture of this one. 🙂 Keira Knightley is so pretty. *(You can say that again)*. Ok, I will, Keira Knightely is so pretty. XD

I’m still brainstorming for the Belle costume, so I’m not ready to give a big ol’ update yet…check out the post The Time that is Given Me for the most recent update…


So, enough cosplay updates. What about you? What are y’all gonna do about new wineskins? I’m ready to move on and let the old things pass away and embrace all things new.

 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

– 2 Corinthians 5:17

Amen. So be it.

Carried on to Completion

20160907_193059

One of the last few sunsets we beheld at our property in Colorado.

I first came to Colorado when I was eight years old; in actuality I was three months from being nine. My sister was six going on seven in August of 2011. Colorado has taught me so many lessons and loves that I shall never forget it. This post is a farewell to Colorado and a hello to a new world. A post about how Christ has used Colorado to impact my life for Him and why Colorado has found a place in my heart to call home. This post is to Colorado, to the mountains, and to the snow.


Colorado, how I love thee.

Your crisp fall mornings and winter snows. Your leaves of fall clothed in magnificent bronze, swaying gently in the autumn breeze. The drives through the winter wind, snowflakes drifting lazily down from above. The summer sun, blazing yellow, shining upon my skin and warming my soul. The spring blossoms, wildflowers of every color bursting forth and adding character to an open grassy field.

Colorado, how I love thee.

My brothers were birthed to life in your cold mountain air. You have brought them into my life and brightened my spirits with their joyful laughs and rambunctious playfulness. The ties with my sister you have braided into a three-fold cord. You have strengthened our relationship and given us freer moments together. My parents you have knit even tighter together and have shown me submission and obedience like never before. You have given me an even greater love an appreciation for them that is indescribable. All of us have loved you and none of us shall forget you.

Colorado, how I love thee.

The hunger for Christ—the desperate need—you have awakened in me. My equestrian passion you brought forth in my soul and the creative spirit of cosplay you have ignited. The pianist in me you have unlocked; the love for music you have divulged.

Colorado, how I love thee.

The strings you have knit in my family are strong. The lessons you have taught me about friends and family. Alas, the lessons I have learned are many—I shall not easily forget them.

Colorado, how I praise God for thee.

God has given to me the gift of Colorado—to learn from and love, to cherish and remember. God has given me Colorado to teach me lessons; lessons both rudimentary and cumbersome.

Colorado, how I shall miss thee. I bid thee a Last Goodbye.


But I shall not mourn forever. I say hello to my new world. I am leaving behind my old life and looking on ahead. I am ready to advance, to sojourn. I laugh at the days to come and my heart skips as I prepare for a new life…a new start. Indeed, I shall be a strange girl in a strange land, but I shall know who I am and shan’t forget it. I’m going on an adventure.

Until we meet again,

Emily 🙂

I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

– Philippians 1:6

I believe it. Amen.

The Awe-Inspiring Book Tag

awe-inspiringbooktag2016

Hi, everyone!

I have created a book tag with some bookish questions. And bookish is a word in case you were wondering XD .

But, before we begin, I wanted to tell everyone about my new YouTube videos I uploaded to this blog on the post 2016 Summer and Lessons Learned. I actually uploaded the Lauren Daigle and Hillsong United videos to the post so be sure to watch those when you get a chance 🙂 . Ok, I’m done talking—here’s the questions:


Question #1. What is the current book/books you’re reading (or just finished reading)?

Answer:  The Gospel of Mark by Mark the Disciple of Jesus 🙂 , and To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee


to_kill_a_mockingbird

Question #2. Did you like this book/books? If so or if not, why?

Answer: I love both of these books! I’ve read the Gospel of Mark dozens of times, but the book always gives me joy to live for Christ and shine out his light to glorify his Kingdom! As for To Kill a Mockingbird, it is extremely realistic, gives the reader a feeling of “really being in Alabama alongside the characters”. Harper Lee is an incredible author; she’s extremely descriptive and I couldn’t put the book down after reading a chapter. It also gave me the gory realistic truth about segregation in the United States during the 30’s up until the 70’s. I never realized how difficult it used to be for blacks and even for the whites who stood with them until I read this book. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good read.


Question #3. Where do you most often go to read?

Answer: I like to sit up high in a tree sometimes to read (call me daring, I love it). Sometimes I’ll sit on my bed or I’d lay in the hammock before it broke mysteriously. I do most of my reading in my bed before I go to sleep, though.


Question #4. What is the best book (or books) you’ve read this year?

Answer: Ooh, that’s a tough one. To Kill a Mockingbird is definitely one of my favorites this year. I had a good time laughing over The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain. I also really enjoyed A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’engle. It was a very brain-twisting book—it made me think, which was what I really enjoyed about it. All the riddles and hidden morals were wonderful!

the_adventures_of_tom_sawyer


Question #5. If you could live inside the world of one book, which would it be?

Answer: That’s very easy: Lord of the Rings. I would want to be an elf, live in Mirkwood, and fight spiders and orcs till the sun goes down. I’m a LOTR Geek with an affinity for elvish-culture. 🙂


Question #6. What is your favorite book or book trilogy/saga/quintet/series?

Answer: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy and Narnia 🙂

the_lord_of_the_rings

narnia-1024x621


Question #7. What is your favorite reading genre?

Answer: Fantasy/Action/Adventure


Question #8. When were you first able to read fluently?

Answer: Four years old


Question #9. What was your favorite book as a child?

Answer: If Elephants Wore Pants by Henrietta Barkow 🙂 My parents would read this book to me and my little sister pretty much every night before bed when we were little. I still remember every single little detail of the story!

9781402717567-us-300

This was my favorite book as a crazy four year old 🙂

↓ Funny Star Wars pun below ↓

if-an-at-at-wore-pants-would-it-wear-them-like-this-or-this-star-wars

Haha, moving on…


Question #10. Who are some of your favorite book heroes?

Answer:  Eowyn for sure! She’s beautiful, strong, valiant, and a warrior. What more is there to say? May that speak for itself, right?

eowyn-the-two-towers-eowyn-35148986-900-378

Second would probably be Legolas or Aragorn.

legolas_awesomeness

May that also speak for itself…ahem.

My third favorite hero is Maria from the book The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge:

skb_littlehorse

In the story, Maria is numerously thrown into danger and always bravely stands up to fight. I can’t give away the plot of the story, but it was one of my favorite fantasy/adventure novels. Elizabeth Goudge is a British author (LOVE IT!!!) with extremely artistic and stylistic techniques in her writing. I couldn’t put this book down and it’s a very good read! Just, keep a dictionary next to you during the first ten chapters. Otherwise, it was an amazing read. J.K. Rowling, Author of the Harry Potter books says, “I absolutely adored The Little White Horse…”

Anyway, back to Maria. She is brave, courageous, and never gives up even when all odds are against her. She was my favorite character in the entire novel.

I also love Scout and Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird and Meg from A Wrinkle in Time


Question #11. Do you have any favorite book quotes?

Answer: Yes! I loved it in Narnia when Aslan says to Lucy, “You doubt your value, don’t run from who you are…”

0fab3829e049b66f6e4b763f7725e328

This quote is literally essential for girls going through puberty and hormonal stress! The world tells us we have to look like supermodels and actresses to look gorgeous, when really, that makes us doubt our value and makes us run from who we were really are. We run to change our image with makeup, and tons of other things I could get into. We run from who we were originally created to be, which takes our eyes off Christ and focuses our eyes on ourselves.

I love Gandalf’s quote:

“…All we can decide is what to do with the time that is given us…”

Also, I love Eowyn’s quote “…no living man am I…” from the book The Return of the King! Here’s the quote (some of the notes were taken from Wikipedia):

The Witch King declares, “I will bear you away to the houses of lamentation, beyond all darkness, where your flesh shall be devoured, and your shriveled mind be left naked to the Lidless Eye.” The Witch-king further boasted that “No living man may hinder me,” referring to the 1,000-year-old prophecy by the Elf-lord Glorfindel, foretelling that the Witch-king would not fall “by the hand of man”. Éowyn then removed her helmet and declared:

“But no living man am I! You look upon a woman. Éowyn I am, Éomund’s daughter. You stand between me and my lord and kin. Begone, if you be not deathless! For living or dark undead, I will smite you, if you touch him.”

– Eowyn, my other girly hero besides my mother 🙂

She totally deserves a gif for that – I know this gif is from the movie, but who cares, right? She’s still awesome and gorgeous.

6070a11c5731fa0a97da009340a22f0c

I also loves one of Aragorn’s quotes from the Lord of the Rings (I’m not sure which book, and he has a lot of quotes)!

aragorn

“Deeds will not be less valiant because they are unpraised.” -Aragorn

For most of you who don’t know me, I’m a people-pleaser. That isn’t always bad, but the world won’t always be the nicest and you can’t always take their advice. Thus, when my “valiant” (haha) actions go unnoticed, even the little things, that doesn’t make them unworthy. They are still things God put in my heart to do, and God saw me, which is all that matters. God was pleased with me and he is praising me even when no one else is. That’s why I love this quote!

Continue reading

The Time that is Given Us

But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you not think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?” 

– Matthew 26:52-53


“I don’t understand.”

Those three words either:

A. Make me want to hurl

or:

B. Make me want to cry 

   Sometimes I just don’t understand why things happen the way that they do. I often wish that I could grasp my predicament by the throat and demand cessation. Or simply say “no more” and my dilemma would cease haunting me.  

I want to believe that God works everything out for the good, and I want to believe that he has great plans for me, and I want to believe that my future is in his hands. But when circumstances “get hard”, those are the times it’s hard to know that those statements are true. It’s like my mom says:

“Real Faith in Christ is like this: you are a sponge. When times are wonderful, you soak up lots of concepts; whether good or bad, only you can say. But, when times become increasingly hard, you are squeezed, and whatever comes out is who you truly are.”

– The Amazing Mom Patty 🙂

Thus, the past few months I’ve learned this: My faith is defined by the hard moments. My story, my life, is defined by the trials and tears. If I didn’t go through the things I do and if I didn’t feel the feelings I feel, my life couldn’t be crafted and my faith couldn’t be refined. I think of Joseph:

Thrown into a well by his own brothers, sold into slavery by them, and accused of abusing his master’s wife, he was ultimately cast into prison for a crime he did not commit.

After many more turns of events, Joseph actually became second in command to Pharaoh! He ends his story by forgiving his brothers as they come to beg for food during a famine. He says:

“But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.”

– Joseph, from Genesis 50:20

Thus, I have learned:

Nothing in my life will go as splendidly as Christ has planned if I don’t experience some type of physical, mental, or spiritual pain.

Babies cannot be born without labor pangs. We cannot have a spring without a winter. There is no harvest if there is no cultivation. There is no endorphin that comes unless you look back and see all the perplexing trials and vexatious predicaments that God has put into your life to bring you “that far.”

This week what really made me understand was this: Jesus at Gethsemane

Judas, Jesus’ own disciple comes to betray him. How? With a kiss. He kisses Jesus, saying, “Greetings, Rabbi!” And Jesus, most likely saddened, says, “Friend, why have you come?” What blows my mind is that Jesus still calls him friend. As they bind Jesus, Peter swiftly pulls his sword out of it’s sheath and cuts off the ear of the servant of the High Priest. Jesus responds:

But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you not think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?” 

– Matthew 26:52-53

“How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled that it must happen thus?” How could my life be fulfilled if I didn’t have to lose so many friends? How could God write my story if I decided I wouldn’t listen and let go of Instagram? How could Christ show me horses were my passion if I decided it was too scary to get back on after falling off? How could God show me His love for me if I had decided it was too hard to follow Him?

You see, the scary and laborious things in life are the things that shape our lives from child to adult. It reminds me of something that Gandalf said:

Gandalf1

I edited this picture myself on picmonkey hahaha XD

Frodo didn’t want the Ring. He hated the Ring, and he tells Gandalf his deep sorrow. Gandalf, (in his awesome Grandpa voice) tells Frodo that our situations are not for us to decide. Basically, we can’t pick and choose what trials and quests (love that word quests XD) we want in life. But, we can decide what to do with the time that God gives us.

One final note:

Three days ago, I was reading a passage of scripture in Matthew about Jesus on the cross.

As Jesus hung there, suffocating, breathing his last breaths, the crowd menacingly taunted him. “If you are the Son of God, save yourself! Look, He saved others, but now He cannot even save himself.”

Recently my folks and I put our home up for sale. We didn’t understand why our home wasn’t selling, and we felt taunted. That day, when I read that, I heard God tell me that those taunts we heard the enemy whisper (i.e. “why isn’t your house selling?”, “if God wants you to move, why hasn’t He sold your house?”), were just like the taunts Jesus received on the cross. But what happened three days later? Jesus rose. And God told me that in three days something awesome would happen with the sale of our home.

Today is the third day. Our house is being offered on.

I was ecstatic when Mom told me! God had made a promise to me, I believed it, and look what he’s done! The suspense was killing me, literally. Ok, maybe not literally, but mentally. XD

All I’m saying, people, is to hold on. Through the fire, the storm, the darkest night, or the coldest winter, God’s got something fantastic waiting on the other side.

Trials do hurt, they can sting, and tears sometimes come, but they are some of the greatest things you can endure! They’ve shaped me into who I am today, and I don’t really know what I’d do without ’em.

It’s like Gandalf said, we can’t decide what problems we want/can handle, but we can decide what to do with the time that God gives us.

All for now, folks!

Namárië,

Emily Greenleaf XD

P.S. Here’s a future cosplay…update…thing XD:

Pirates of the Caribbean Elizabeth Swann! I’m not the hugest Elizabeth fan – I mean, in my eyes she’s overrated. Plus she’s one of the biggest drama queens I’ve ever seen. I wanted to do a combo of Will, Elizabeth, and Jack, but that would take too much work {just kidding}. Anyway, I think her costume in The Dead Man’s Chest/At World’s End is a lot more…shall we say…conservative than her formal gownish contraption she wore in The Curse of the Black Pearl. However, I don’t have all negative things to say about Izz (as Jack calls her). Keira Knightley is downright gorgeous and her British accent is glamorous (and I say glamorous with halos and sparklies everywhere).

elizabeth_swann3

 

This drawing was designed by yours truly and I hope it turns out well…ha…ha…ha XD. I hope to have it done by the time the new movie comes out next year (in July, I think).

tumblr_n63t227dlg1twcj5xo4_250

“Wha?” (and there’s the famous Keira Knightley nose flare…)

I love gifs.

Ahem.

Also, Disney is making a Beauty and the Beast movie that’s coming out in March of 2017! I’m not a huge fan of the original Disney Princess cartoons, but I love the actual films they’ve been making (Cinderella 2015, Maleficent 2014, and now Beauty and the Beast 2017)! Here’s the trailer:

So, I also designed a Belle cosplay for the movie in March! Here’s my design:

village_belle2

Soak it up, people XD – and don’t make fun of Belle’s hands in my drawing. 🙂

Furthermore, there’s Rogue One coming out in December. I’m not super excited about it, but I am excited, so I’ll probably just go to the movies as Rey. I’m not saying Rogue One looks unscrupulous, but I’m not as excited for it as I would be for Star Wars Episode Eight. You feelin’ me?

By the way, what’s with Doctor Strange? I’m just not a fan – Tilda Swinton just looks intimidatingly creepy (with no hair and all), which makes me run away, so I won’t be doing any Doctor Strange cosplays any time soon. I loved Tilda Swinton in Narnia, but again, she was given an ultimately creepy role as Jadis.

Ok, last thing on cosplay: Legolas. I’m gettin’ there peeps…we’re moving, ya know? I hope to get the pictures done THIS MONTH SOMETIME before we move. So, with that being said, I will bid you adieu. Adios, amigos!

Ok, I’m done 🙂

Actually, here’s another poll. Ok, now I’m done.