May 09, 2017 / 12:42 PM
Dear, Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop (Althea Korea, P1,010)
I’ve been suffering from the worst breakout of my life since February. It started with a huge pimple on my nose, then it transferred on my cheeks and chin. The constellation of distressing acne’s made me so insecure. I took a break from my BB Cream and went back to my full-coverage foundation, the Flormar Mat Touch Foundation. I lessened my use of *blinding* highlight because it accentuates ...
May 03, 2017 / 02:32 AM
A few weeks ago, I changed my username on Instagram and Twitter. If I didn’t just renew my hosting and domain – which took a huge chunk from my pay – I would’ve done the same for my blog. During the early days of my entire rebrand, as I was praying for a title, She Makes Him Known felt…right. I knew it was from God. “She” didn’t refer to myself but to the women I intend(ed) to share my faith to. But, a year has passed, and it feels like a mistake. I am so undeserving, and no day passes by when the enemy doesn’t tell me.
Have I really been staying true to my cause? I ask myself that all the time. There are several things I prayed for this safe space to be. I want it to be a community for young women to share about Christ. Through time, God kept reaffirming the need for this platform. Indeed, there is an audience thirsting for Him, I just had to move.
With all honesty, I never thought I’d write about beauty. I don’t feel bad about it – maybe only when I spend more than I should – because it’s something I’m passionate about. But, as much as I want to be the “God Girl” everyone presumes I am, I can’t always find the right words to write about God. Just like any other writer…and believer, I go through seasons of drought. Truly, if I let my emotions dictate my relationship with Him, I would have stopped believing a long time ago. Still, I persist, because I know that in unremarkable moments of solitude, God is glorified by a heart who seeks His nearness. He won’t always give a clear yes or no; most of the time, what happens in between is already the blessing. The biggest product of our season(s) of waiting isn’t the path we arrive at but the people we become.
Read: When God Feels Like An Afterthought
The question is, why exactly do I want to make Him known? Is it because I want to be regarded as the “selfless” servant – to essentially be glorified in the process – or to act as a purveyor of His grace, to point to His perfect Being? I find myself disappointed when I can write about everything else so easily but churning out God-breathed content takes everything from me. At the end of the day, it points to the I, to my pride. I constantly plead with God how my so-called ministry isn’t “successful” in the eyes of the world. But, which lenses am I looking through – from Eternity’s perspective or my own?
But, my God, I know He knows how much I try. With a daily 9-hour desk job, photography school and ministry, I continue to grow my passion project. But lately, it seems to be such a big responsibility and an undeniable burden. As much as it’s an avenue for joy, all I feel is pressure. I take it so seriously, more than I have in the past, that all I have are lists of possible blog entry ideas, one half-baked draft after the other, and depressing Google Analytics statistics.
More than that, my everyday sin cloaks me and forces me to think that I am unworthy to be used by God when I know full well, He equips those He calls. I mean, how can He plant the seeds and not finish His work? I pray for that to be true.
So, what I’m saying is this…I apologize to anyone I’ve disappointed, who I’ve led to believe differently about my heart and my cause. But still, thank you for staying with me. We’ll figure this out. God, help me.
“And then it hit me: I served God with mixed motives. I hoped lost people would be saved –
April 30, 2017 / 22:41 PM
(On the photo: Flormar Mat Touch Foundation in M301)
For April’s Favorites, Lately, I’ve been enjoying a variety of make-up bases from the drugstore for every mood…and skin issue. I’ve been a firm believer in a good full-coverage foundation for the longest time until I discovered some make-up game-changers: the cushion foundation, tinted moisturizer, and BB cream. I find it silly how in the past, I wouldn’t invest in a good base but in time, you ...
April 20, 2017 / 00:13 AM
When I tell people I’m an introvert, they either laugh or shake their heads in disbelief – ako rin, actually.
I won’t even try to sugarcoat it, I can be loud and talkative…with people I’m comfortable with. I’m pretty sociable, and I find myself *awkwardly* pursuing conversations with strangers or acquaintances before the other party does. But, let me tell you something, I love my alone – a lot. I don’t mind being a wallflower in a crowded place. Riding the train at night is almost cinematic. Praying in tranquil streets is my daily communion with God. Tall bookstores and well-lit coffee shops – devoid of pilit conversations – are my haven.
So, why do I even bother?
Because, we are urgently called to live outside of the familiar. Growth is even more beautiful where we least expect it. We all have our own personal voices that need to be heard. And, nobody else can do that for us. I pray this for you: may you have the courage to dream and move big enough that you embrace the need of others, too.
- Know your strengths (and weaknesses).
Through the years, I’ve managed to make my blog into a ministry – praise God! It started with familiarizing myself with my strengths: writing and visual storytelling. Knowing my audience – mostly female high schoolers to young adults – helped me filter the content I continue to create up to this day. I also tried understanding how people responded to my brand, and I fully used it to my advantage. More than the effectivity of the work I produce, I’ve discovered that people stay with me because of my ability to empathize with them. Being relational is deeply essential to any passion.
- Choose a platform you’re comfortable with.
Speaking in front of an audience makes me anxious. I tend to lose my train of thought because I’m too focused on the possibility of messing up that…I actually do. Even speaking with my peers makes me insecure, at times. This is why I write. A blog allows me to lay out my scattered thoughts, edit, and proofread it until I’m content. As a perfectionist, this also means that there are less opportunities for me to make mistakes, since I can always hit the delete key. Writing also, strangely, gives me the comforts of anonymity. I can imagine people reading my words and not see me but, I hope, they see a part of themselves in it.
A great advantage of being introverted is the patience to listen. Listening is an act of humility. Seeking out people and their stories instead of rushing to speak and be heard is honorable and rare. By being intentional and being present, we gain the trust of others. By digesting what another party says – without prejudice and expectations – we make way for better understanding and genuine empathy. Paraphrasing C.S. Lewis, it isn’t thinking less of ourselves, it’s thinking of ourselves less.
Read: Six Lessons in Good Listening via Desiring God
Start with a peer or a colleague you have similar interests with, and bond over that commonality. Begin a newsletter, and ask your close friends if they can be part of it. Once you’ve got the hang of it, maybe start a public blog. Create a podcast if you find that you’re more confident as a speaker. Put your illustrations inside books, and let people find you through that. Make short videos about your every day using your phone, tether these familiar moments, and post a vlog on YouTube. There are countless of ways to interact with other people indirectly – if that makes you anxious or uncomfortable. Just don’t rush it because it’s so easy to spot authenticity.
April 17, 2017 / 23:29 PM
I was (am) in my early 20s, still using the classic Pond’s Cold Cream to remove make-up, a generic Western facial wash that stripped my skin of moisture, and a harsh alcohol-based toner – masabi lang na I was doing something for my skin. I was clueless, hoarding the latest in beauty knowing I can cover up my skin issues – hyperpigmentation, hormonal acne, uneven skin tone, and super rough texture – with a good ...