Tag Archives: kingdom

Post Office Manners

So today I went to the post office to mail a package out for WangGukClothing. A sale is a success so I was in a good mood. When I got in line, there were two people in front of me and then a mysterious pile of packages on the floor, which I stepped over to stand in line. The guy in front not-so-surreptitiously said to the woman in front of me, “I thought she told you to hold her spot in line,” to which the woman said, “Oh that’s what she wanted me to do?” to which he said, “Well I guess it really isn’t your responsibility.” My eyes started to roll but I refused to get bent out of shape by a person who wasn’t even in the room.
Enter the mystery sender: a woman with bleached-out wispy hair, botox-filled lips, and more face make-up than a high-school party cat. She comes back to her pile of boxes on the floor, looks at them, then turns to me, leans in super close to my face (yay because I really love explicit invasion of personal space) and says, “Umm, you know, I was right behind her,” to which, after a split-second decision to implicitly make a fool out of her rather than be completely non-confrontational (which may or may not have been the best way to react), I said, “You know what, if it means that much to you, you can be in front of me.”(Which was my socially acceptable way of saying to a 60-year-old woman “YOU’RE A CHILD.”) And before she could finish blubbering about it (“I—well, I mean—well I just—”), I stepped over her place-holder pile and stood behind her with my package. After this, the woman who had been in front of me, and who was supposedly the old lady’s priorly assumed BFF for today, said to me, “You know what, you can be in front of me.”I was caught a little off-guard and thanked her several times for her thoughtfulness, which she brushed off, saying it was nothing.
Moral of the story? A pay-it-forward, mature attitude always prevails over a childish self-preserving one. If someone sees someone acting right, they’re 100% more likely to also act right. A little bit of a continuation of my lesson in patience with people.  Guess I also need to remember that, sometimes, perhaps silence is golden.  …1Corithians.13.11//Philippians.2.3-4,15-16

The Donut Shop

There is a local donut shop around the corner to where I get my nails painted.  It’s a family-run donut shop.  I sought shelter at this place tonight so that I could be alone and read and write in peace.  And because Starbucks was full and obnoxious.  This donut shop’s hours of operation are four am until midnight.  So this tiny old man gets up at four, starts kneading his dough, and has fresh donuts for the public by five.  And then he is open all day until midnight, then he sleeps for four hours, then gets up and does it all over again.
Isn’t that nuts?  I was shocked as I sat alone, reading and eating my donuts, as he told a customer about his donut routine.  I was shocked.  I don’t know if I currently love anything in my entire life as much as this tiny old man loves his tiny old donut shop.  It’s a love I’ve yet to know or understand.  Four hours.  That’s it.  How is he still living?  His love must keep him alive.
As I sat, reading my book and eating my donuts and thinking my thoughts, I had to think:  if everyone loved each other with the same sacrifice that this tiny old man loves his tiny old donut shop with, this world would look less like a mess and more like a Kingdom.

PS everyone:  I’m sorry about the gap in posts.  Life is a crazy thing.  I’ll try to get more out soon. ❤

The Orchestra

The Orchestra:  the Kingdom as Song
Olivia of WangGuk

I have been really behind on posts here lately; please forgive that.  Life gets so complicated sometimes.  Instead of a Fashion-Review-Monday, this is just a general post that I meant to post yesterday because it’s more of a Kingdom-Thoughts-type post.
Over the weekend, I was able to drive down to LA to visit my family— one of my cousins is a really talented classical musician and I got to watch him play as a part of a local orchestra.  It was an awesome experience for a lot of reasons— I’ve never seen him play classical music before, so that was great, and I got to see my family and that’s always awesome.  But as I was watching him play, I started thinking about what playing as part of an orchestra actually means.  At first, I just watched my cousin playing, since he was who I was there to see and support.  But as the music flowed onward, I started looking all over the stage at each of the different players.  It was amazing to me that each one of these people was so gifted, so talented on their own— yet each of them was also part of a bigger picture.  Each one of them played a different part, but each one of them was necessary for each song.  Each player’s part was unique and different, but each was necessary and each was beautiful.
I think the Kingdom is like this.  We are each talented in different ways, but when working together, we suddenly become this bigger picture, this greater good.  And each one of us is vital to that greater good.  In an orchestra, if one person is missing, the other players feel the loss, even if the audience doesn’t know the difference.  And each person plays a separate part of the same song, but when meshed together perfectly, all of the different melodies makes a masterpiece.  In life, we each have different roles, but I think in a perfect, working Community, each person’s unique role fits perfectly into the web with everyone else’s special role.
Another thing I noticed while watching the orchestra:  if someone messed up or played a wrong chord, there was no discord to be noticed.  Everyone simply moved on and kept playing, for the sake of the song.  I think this is how the Community should be as well:  if we focus too long on any one mistake made by either oneself or another brother, how will we finish the song?  We need to keep moving forward so that we can finish the masterpiece, keep running the race.  Mistakes will happen; they are inevitable, they are necessary— and choosing to move forward after mistakes are made must be necessary too, for progress’s sake.  If we each keep playing our unique parts and keep holding each other up after mistakes, we’ll be part of a big beautiful song— how awesome.
The Kingdom is our Song.  And God’s the best Conductor I can imagine:  He’s there to remind, He’s there to suggest, He’s there to guide and encourage— but He won’t force a player to play right.  He will strengthen, but we have to want to keep playing to make the Song a reality.  I think that’s a pretty cool working, breathing Kingdom— a Song perfected is what to look forward to on this beautiful Earth.

Kingdom Thoughts

Kingdom Thoughts
By Olivia of WangGuk

What is the “Kingdom”?  What do we mean when we say “the Kingdom of God”?  There are many answers to this question— lots of opinions and interpretations out there.  This post is about my own thoughts about the Kingdom.
Now, I am no biblical scholar; I am no expert on the New or Old Testaments; I’m not a nun or a monk or anyone who has spent incredibly copious amounts of time in the Word.  But I do love God.  And I do love His people here on Earth; and I want to see His Kingdom come here.  So with that being said, when I think of the Kingdom of God, I think of Earth.  This may be strange or unorthodox to some because many equate Heaven to the Kingdom of God.  And I do agree— Heaven, this perfect place or state of mind or whatever you want to think of it as, is the fulfilled Kingdom of God— I do think that.  But I also think that Heaven is not this far-off place up in the clouds, like how I always kind of ended up picturing it in Sunday school.  I think of it, rather, as the manifestation of God’s master plan here on Earth.  I think of the Kingdom of God as Heaven brought to Earth.
When I think of what Heaven will look like, it looks just like Earth to me— but Earth perfected.  It looks like God’s people living the way they were meant to live.  It looks like peace; it looks like love.  And when I think of people “living as they were meant to live,” it looks like this:  that there is no unwholesome talk that comes from anyone’s mouth, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen; that each are living a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us; that we are submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ (Ephesians 4.29, 5.2, 5.21).  When I think of the Earth perfected— when I think of the people perfected— I imagine a world where every single person is living for the benefit of his brother.  A world where no one is thinking of himself first, but thinking of what will help others.  A world where we are constantly working for each other and not for ourselves.  When I think of what humanity would look like perfected, it would look like each one of us striving to push one another to reach each of our fullest and greatest potentials.  Like I’ll probably say a thousand times in posts to come, I think God made us for each other— I think people were made for people.  And we are our best selves when we are living for the betterment of each other and not simply focusing on ourselves.
This is the greatest strength; that we don’t live for our own success, but to see each other grow and mature— to consider the growth of a brother or sister more important than oneself.  When I see this world perfected, I see no one doing anything out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility considering others better than ourselves (Philippians 2.3, 2.4).  And I think that kind of defines what I see sin or darkness as:  the inward curvature of the self.  We are never unhealthier than when we are completely focused on our own personal gain.  When selfishness overcomes us, rather than sacrifice.  It may seem counter-intuitive in some ways, but the healthiest we can be as individuals is when we’re living, not for ourselves, but for each other.  And I think that is the greatest love we can achieve as well— that we want what is the absolute best for our brother or sister, no matter the cost on our own parts.  The way I will love someone best is to want what is absolutely best for him, what causes him to be the best and healthiest version of himself, no matter the cost for me.  That building someone else up is more important than building myself up.  This is how we should be living.  And once we’re living like that, I think the Kingdom will have reached Earth.

When people talk about the Earth ending in fire, that the world we see now will have to be completely destroyed for the new one to come, I used to disagree because I thought of the Earth perfected as simply the end of Earth as we know it and the beginning of how it should be.  But now, I don’t have a problem with this because, just as we are refined by the flame to become gold— as trials mold us into more of who we ought to be— the Earth is constantly being refined through flame as well.  There’s a lot of crap still left in this world; there’s a lot of darkness still lurking around.  It’s because we’re not there yet; we’re still a work in progress— this world is still a work in progress.  When we look around, we still see people living for themselves, still living in selfishness and in greed.  When the time comes for Heaven to have reached Earth and this Earth becomes the redeemed and working Kingdom of God, we will be living in sacrificial love for each other and working with and for one another in perfect harmony.  I don’t think this Earth has to be destroyed and made again for that to happen— what would be much more impressive to me is watching a full transformation of what’s already here.
In short, the Kingdom starts here and now, and I love watching this work in progress— every step of it.  We’re still going to mess up because we aren’t to that perfected Kingdom yet, but we’re being refined, and that’s a blessing.  The Kingdom starts here, and in the words of one of the wisest artists I know, “the revolution will not be televised; the revolution is in your mind; the revolution is here” (Kwon “G-Dragon” JiYong).  The Kingdom starts with Kingdom mentality.  If we start thinking in love, chances are we’ll end up acting in love.  And chances are, if we start thinking of each other as Kingdom members, as brothers and sisters, that Kingdom will start building around us faster than we could have imagined.
Isn’t it kind of amazing that God would choose to build His Kingdom out of people like us?  When I think about it, I consider that God didn’t have to create at all…but He did.  For whatever the reason.  And I’m really glad He did.  What better way to show the actual power of His Love than to take self-serving people like us and build a Kingdom of sacrificial love out of us?