snippet from The Turning Point
The Turning Point
Even though it has only been about 2 days since I talked to Channchi, I still feel some kind of hesitation about what to do in the immediate future. But obviously, that is probably something everyone stresses about. I think coming to Berkeley was the right choice after all. The stress and beatdown that I have been experiencing really wiped away a lot of my pride and pompous. Now I am left in tatters and need someone to rescue me from the pits of the UC Berkeley curve. Channchi reintroduced me to God, something I would have never expected from our conversation nor from the UC Berkeley campus. I initially presumed our conversation was going to be tangible and technical, hoping she would tell me how to succeed in my classes or reiterate the principles taught in the straight As seminar. Somehow, by the grace of God, she went on to talk about God and trusting Him in these situations since only He knows where I would be in 5 years and even further down the line. Being in this stressful and demotivating academic position, I truly appreciate what prayer and trust in God means. Knowing about Jesus and God from an early age, I did not understand the true extent of the joy and relief I would feel if I prayed. Sure, I have prayed after I committed an extremely terrible sin, but that is different. The cry for forgiveness does not compare to cry for help. The cry for help comes from someone who has lost control and is drowning. Maybe now I can finally understand how Amazing Grace was written. That desperate plea for help from God, and He delivered. That feeling after deliverance must be even better than the feeling of getting married (not that I would know).

I am surprised that I received help at an university where I had felt so lonely for so long. Even though I definitely was not alone for the majority of the journey here, there were not a lot of students who have similar Christian experiences that I had: the on-and-off relationship with God. Everyone is depending on themselves to pull through the upcoming years and semesters, but no one really displays their trust in the Lord, and as a result, I felt somewhat ostracized despite the fact that no one intended that to happen to me.

Now that I have rediscovered the revelation in my life, I hopefully can capitalize on this opportunity so that I flourish and grow from this experience. This can certainly propel me forward in my spiritual walk towards Jesus if I am not tempted by my the desires of my flesh. But I know that prayer is a tool that I can definitely rely on more often to combat the attacks and the temptations from the world. Channchi's talk about God as a "relationship" truly made me realize that I had isolated the relationship and God to be something foreign (definitely not a relationship). This might be due to the fact that I was not close with my parents when I was growing up, so I do not have the understanding for a relationship God. However, I'm getting the used to what to expect from God. I just need to trust him, love him, and allow him to guide me. I need to disregard what I want and let Him show me what I really NEED.

Despite the epiphany, I am still have feelings of insecurity and inferiority, especially when it comes to Valerie and the Stanford-Berkeley comparison. First, Valerie was and probably always be someone who I truly adore, despite the fact I did not treat her like some who loves her. I treated her like an outsider because I felt different and insecure. Though it was both of our faults that we did not work out, it was definitely me who had to turn up the ending another notch by telling that her death would not affect me. It's certainly ungodly to say. I would not like to hear that sentence from someone else, so why did I say it to her? I believe it was the spur of the moment; all of the little moments when I just took her "teasing" (what I considered hurtful abuse) just added up. Individually those moments probably did not make significant impact on our relationship, but little things add up. And in our relationship, those little heated moments somehow boiled the pot and I exploded. I feel regretful, and I can beg for forgiveness from God and Valerie, but I don't think I can ever forgive myself. However, I do miss her. Her presence. Her care. Her criticism. Her assurance. He offer of help. And most of all, her personality (something I did not value or adore in the moment). Second, the rivalry between Berkeley and Stanford is obviously not completely serious. Each has its own pros and cons, it just happens that these two universities have two different paths and purposes. UC Berkeley just happens to be serving the public (state of California), and Stanford has its own private agenda. The circumstances in which the two schools were established are different; the space and resources available to both schools are different. However, I cannot help but to compare these two schools even though it is like comparing apples with oranges. They are similar in some ways, but different overall. I should not make these unfair comparisons, but I just do not like to loose (or be wrong). It just pains me to be criticized and not make a point in the defense of my school (that I hopefully graduate from). However, I realized that I should not feel this way if I am to do great things for God. I know God would not appreciate me getting caught up in the inconsequential details of my life and completely get distracted from my education at an elite university. The difference between these universities are minute enough that they should not make a significant impact in the industries that I intend to go into, especially CS. Both are elite universities. I should accept the fact and move on because getting distracted is not the ideal to grow and flourish in this fast-paced environment.


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