Sunday, June 28, 2015

Love conquers all

Friday, June 26 2015 was a day in history that affected every single one of us. Some were dismayed and others filled with joy that they could finally marry their soulmate. Why such division? The United States of America has made gay marriage legal throughout all 50 states!

Where do I stand on this? Many probably think that since I'm a Christian, I would be opposed to this.  On the contrary; I'm pro gay marriage.

Before you stop reading, thinking this is a blog post trying to change your mind one way or another, it's not. I believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion and should respect others. One shouldn't grab their Bible and start shouting verses and condemning one to hell, and others should respect that some are in disagreement with the Supreme Court's decision.

So why the blog post? 

I believe love always wins.

If you're Christian, I have a question for you...
"If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone" John 8:7
Who are you to judge? If you believe gay marriage is a sin: since all sin is equal, aren't you just as much of a sinner? What makes you feel more entitled to judge, if the only one that is to judge is God? Our all-loving God. Same to those who are pro gay marriage: Why judge those who traditions go against it?

God calls each and every single one of us to love one another. It is our greatest commandment. Whether we are in disagreement or not.
Our world would work so smoothly is there wasn't conflict, but there have been disagreements since the beginning of time. 

So whether you have more of a traditional view or not, in 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 Paul says "if I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a  clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give over my body to the poor and give my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing."

Why then are we attacking one another?

As much as we think we know as humans, our knowledge isn't capable of understanding how life exists. No matter how close we think we are to finding answers, we always cross paths with something that brings even more questions. 

We will never truly see clearly until the day we die and enter the kingdom of heaven.

To those who oppose gay marriage: Jesus, instead of using his words to condemn tax collectors, prostitutes, thieves, etc... went to them and loved them. He brought them all together to have a meal with Him, not to tell them how wrong they are or how they are going to hell, but to share his love with every single one of them.

Many of you will probably be in disagreement when I say that I believe in gay marriage, but one thing you can't disagree with is that we are all called to share God's love. It's okay to feel dismayed and upset by this. I'm not saying it isn't, especially if it goes against what you've always believed in. But, if you do call yourself a follower, express it by sharing God's love.
It's been very upsetting seeing Christians fight against one another, saying how they're right and those who oppose their view are just wrong, and it’s just as upsetting seeing other religions join in. It's okay to believe what you believe, just no need to judge. As I've said throughout this blog post, it is our job to love.  So hopefully by now you're getting my point.

Today, at church our pastor gave the example of the families in Charleston whose loved ones died from being killed by Dylan Roof. They went to him and forgave him.. Instead of hating him they spread love. To clarify, I'm not comparing Dylan Roof to gay marriage.  Not even a little.  What I'm trying to say is it must of been so difficult to go up to the person who killed the one you love and forgive them. Instead of fleeing and judging, they went to him and shared love.  It goes against what us as humans do. I admire how they spread forgiveness and God's love, showing how love conquers all.

So whatever you are, be it a Christian who believes in gay marriage or one who is more on the traditional side, a different religion or someone of no religion at all, gay or straight, bisexual or transgender, rich or poor, female or male:

Love conquers all.

I wanted to end this blog post with another thing my pastor said.  He's more on the traditional side, and even though we have oppose views, we aren't going to sit down judge one another. We will spread love.

How do we know if we are spreading love? My pastor said to place your name in the blanks that follow.

_____ is patient. ______ is kind. _____ does not envy. does not boast, ___ is not proud. _____ does not dishonor others, ____ is not self seeking, ____ is not easily angered,_____ keeps no record of wrongs. ____ does not delight I'm evil but rejoices with the truth. _____ always protects, always trust, always hopes, always preserves.

1 Corinthians 13:4-6

I might share or oppose your view when it comes to gay marriage, but hopefully this is one thing we can agree on: Love always wins.

I would give the reasons why I believe in gay marriage, but I do not think it's necessary for this post. If you have questions to why, you're are more than welcomed to email me!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

I'm back!

It was 7 A.M. and I was running late for a mini cram session right before my neuroscience exam. I looked over and saw that I had one Snapple left (one delicious Snapple left). So I grabbed it and placed it in the net pouch on the side of my backpack. I headed to the restroom and placed my stuff on the bench outside; when I was done, I swung my backpack, and in slow motion I saw my last precious Snapple suicide jump from my backpack to the cold, hard floor.  My beautiful Snapple shattered to pieces on the bathroom floor. The tea and glass slowly took over half of the community bathroom floor. Watching the puddle spread across the tile, my heart dropped a little inside. My beloved Snapple (that I was supposed to be enjoying right before my exam) was dead. After standing there for a moment, I thought: Is this foreshadowing my exam?


Why tell y’all this story?
I haven’t been posting on my blog. I know I’ve been slacking, so I thought you guys would enjoy laughing a little at the mess I’ve been this week. But, thankfully all my exams are over now, so I can finally start posting!

Now for the real blog post…. Dun. Dun. DUNNNNNNNNNN.

So, this blog post will be a little different. Why?
I’m going to get you guys super pumped for some future blog post that are soon to come!
You ready?
1) I got some bangs! Yes, I went back to the good old days. Not the Dora phase but some side bangs!
2) I’m going to CALIFORNIA! WOOHOO! I’m super pumped. I’m going with my best friends Addison, Grace, and Kassidy!
3) I’m going camping… yes, you heard that right. Pam out there in the wild. I’ve been out in the wild before but definitely not like out there out there to the point where I’m sleeping outside. I like to consider myself a nice city girl (and everyone else will back that up).
4) I just wanted to say a small shout out to Mason. Chris, you’re a stud.
5) There’s much, much more that you’ll just have to wait for. :)

Lastly, I just wanted to say thank you for everyone that has been reading my blog! I reached 3,000 views! :)

Friday, February 13, 2015

Hi, my name is Pam and I'm a coffee addict.

I’m a coffee addict.
No doubt about it. Hence the name of my blog.

I’m currently on my coffee detox. I guess it can’t be called a “detox” since I’m limiting myself to one a day.  When it comes to me saying one a day, I mean one container. The size of the container can range from a medium to a large. Grande or venti in Starbucks terminology. But, still. It’s one. Right?

Why am I on this coffee detox? Well, I decided to give up coffee for lent, and if I don’t start limiting myself to one a day I’ll have withdrawals and die for sure.
Maybe not die, but it will definitely be a struggle. 

The reason I’m telling you about giving up my delicious, precious coffee is because I want to explain why.

When I’m tired, the only thing that I believe can energize me is coffee, which is in fact true because of the caffeine. But there are other ways in which I can release some of my “tiredness.” Some of it comes from all the classes and labs I’m taking and all the studying I have aside of that, which I don’t mind since I enjoy what I am studying.  But at the same time, I’ve noticed that most of my tiredness doesn’t come from all the classes or studying that I’m doing (I have my schedule pretty organized) but from the stress that I put on myself with the question, “What if I don’t get into OT school after all this studying?” Then there’s the whole, “There’s so much money going into my education that I don’t want to put it to waste” And we might as well add in, “If I can’t do this, then what else can I do?” These questions are constantly running through my head, which stresses me out. And it’s with all that stress this tiredness takes over. Then, unconsciously, I’m swiping my card to get some coffee.

All this might sound just absolutely insane, but it’s true. So, for lent I’m giving my coffee up. It isn’t to torture myself so that when I have a huge exam, I can’t stay awake.  It’s not anything like that. No, the reason I’m giving it up is to be able to trust in God fully. I don’t need to stress out about how, what, when, and how any of my life will play out. All I need to focus on is the present.

At this moment, I’m diagnosing myself with “No, I got this God” disorder. This might sounds kind of ridiculous but it’s so true. Which has me going crazy since I alone can’t handle it and all this stress is getting to me. Slowly, but surely.

I’m not just posting this blog to just spill something personal out there but it’s to challenge you. Find what you’ve been using as a crutch instead of leaning on God. Anytime you’re stressing, anytime something is preventing you from just enjoying life, anytime you are running towards your crutch, take a moment and lean on God.

Why God?
Well, God alone is enough. God is the ultimate happiness. When one realizes that even when you have everything one could possibly want but not a relationship with God, then everything just seems so useless. But, when you have nothing but just God, then you have the greatest gift in the world. God knows who we are and loves us with more love than we can comprehend.  Just by letting him take the lead, He will lead us in the most beautiful dance through our life on earth to our life in heaven.

So, what’s your coffee?

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Valentine's Day

Hello my wonderful readers!

Excuse my long absence, but I’ve had a pretty busy week. I had a neuroscience and chemistry exam on the same day, so I went a bit crazy. Maybe not just a bit. I think I drank my weight in coffee...


I love Valentine’s Day. So I’m super pumped for this weekend. Why, Pamela? Don't you know you're single? Yes. This is true but that doesn’t mean I’ll be “depressed” on this holiday.  Or, be sad eating thousands of pounds of chocolate while I cry watching [insert cheesy chick flick movie here]. Well, I will be eating chocolate (and a whole bunch of it), but that’s just because I can. Plus, chocolate makes the world go around. Anyways, I love this holiday. If you do have a significant other then you can plan something really romantic, or if you’re interested in someone then it’s you’re chance to make a move. However, if you don’t, you can definitely have fun! This year, I’m spending mine with my closest friends from college, so I’m extremely excited. (It’s a “girls night” but since guys are coming, we are changing their names to girl names so it fits the theme). I’ve experienced Valentine’s Day from both sides of the relationship spectrum, and they are both special in completely different ways. So no need to be sad my single friends!

So, I decided to make a Valentine’s Day 101 blog post.

Let’s start with numero uno….

1. No being sad. There’s no need to be sad or bitter that you don’t have someone “special” to spend it with. Go call some friends and plan something. Valentine’s Day is about spending with the people you love. Love isn’t just felt with a boyfriend or a girlfriend but it’s also felt with friends and family!

2. Pinterest is the way to go… find something complicated and make it.

3. Plan a fancy dinner with your friends and get all dressed up and go out to eat! (Who doesn’t like to feel good while they eat some food? I know I do!)

4. If you have liked someone for a while… go ask him or her to go out. What’s the worst that can happen? They say no and then you can throw a Hershey Kiss at their face. Don’t do that. But, if they say no then it’s totally fine and then you know that they aren’t interested and you can take the first step to move on.

These were definitely lame tips…
It’s hard to think of the non-cheesy typical Valentine’s Day things to do.

But, if I had to finish with something that might help you on your Valentine’s Day
, it is this: Whoever makes you happy, whether it be a significant other, friend, or family member, you should spend it with them. Why? We are on this wonderful life journey, and those people who make you happy are the people that help you enjoy every single second of it, even when you feel like you can’t keep going.

I totally understand how this Holiday can get kind of lonely when you don’t have someone to spend it with it
, but it’s only as lonely as you make it. You have the ability to make it the greatest day ever or a sad night. All depends on your outlook on things. 

So, maybe this is why I love Valentine’s Day.
I have the opportunity to spend it with my friends and family who I love and that is all that really matters. And, when I do get to spend it with the guy I like or even the guy who I’ve fallen in love with, then that will be just as great. 

Sunday, February 1, 2015

BLINK by Malcolm Gladwell

First of all: Thank you Griffin for letting me borrow this book! You’re seriously the best. :) 

Guess what time it is… Book review time! When I started this book (literally after the first 60 pages), I told everyone about it. Because right from the beginning, I was so intrigued.

Do I recommend this book? YES. If you’re into learning about the unconscious mind and learning more about psychology then you should totally check this book out! I obviously enjoyed it, since I’m a psychology major… and since I’ve always been so fascinated with human nature.
What exactly is this book about?

Predicting whether a marriage will end up in a divorce in three minutes, providing less information about the patient so doctors are less likely to make a mistake, analyzing to see whether an “I love you” is truly sincere, having short moments of autism that can help one react in situations that deal with an attempt of an assassination, or misjudging situations that end in death. All this is done through thin slicing; a blink; thinking without knowing that one is.

Maybe the greatest decision makers aren’t the ones who take time to analyze and process information.

You’re going to have to read this book to find out!

When has your unconscious helped you or let you down?

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Traveling between two worlds in 15 minutes

Before you go on and read my blog post… Remember how there’s an unspoken rule to never bring up politics, religion, and or sports?

Let me warn you really fast: I’m about to break that rule.  Here I go bringing up science and religion. I wasn’t going to post this, but it’s been taking control of my mind (Ask my friend Amanda, she’s heard all my speeches), and I haven’t been able to think of another blog topic because this has been running through my mind 24/7. I will not be preaching, but I will say I’ve been struggling and overcoming my struggle. So, if you don’t feel comfortable then you don’t have to read it. :)
I’ll be posting another post soon!

Since I started college last fall, I’ve fallen in love with science. I used to always be interested in it, but it wasn’t until college that I started to truly enjoy it. (Except for physics, I hate physics.) This semester, I’m in a Neuroscience class, which I thought I wasn’t going to like at first but eventually led me to consider changing my major.

I know there’s a huge debate between science and religion, but with all the science classes I’ve taken (whether in high school or college), I’ve never had that struggle until this class. Why? Well, I don’t know if it’s because professors and/or teachers tend to skip over the subject or even just briefly touch on it.  But, in this class… it’s a little different. From the first class, religion was brought up. It’s not one of those professor was a Christian and then something terrible happened and then now he hates God kind of situation, but my professors’ point is that we can’t simply state something is true without concrete evidence.

Their point makes sense. I’m on the pre-health track, so I should have a desire to understand why things happen so I can fix or prevent them later on. Simply claiming something a miracle and not wanting to know the cause, other than God, doesn’t make me suitable for the profession I have chosen. Sound harsh? I know. Which is why I’ve been struggling with it.

Anyways, I would walk out of the class frustrated and then walk to my next class, which was Chapel. Can you imagine how confused I have been? Very.

I went to Neuroscience Lab this week, and can you guess what the first slides were about?

“Can science and religion co-exist, or do they naturally oppose each other?”

Then next slide goes on saying,

“If one needs the idea of God to explain natural phenomena, and then science comes along and identifies natural forces that can explain those same phenomena, then one’s need for God to exist might very well be challenged.

But isn’t it possible, indeed likely, that the issue of God’s existence is not at all dependent on our need for Him to exist?”

Sounds more like a philosophy class than a neuroscience class, right?

I started to notice that I didn’t doubt my faith, but I still didn’t feel right putting on two different faces. One, where I am a believer, and two, only believing what can be proven.

But, then it got me thinking…. Science is a tool that God has given us to get a glimpse of his creation, a bit more of an understanding. We don’t have answers to a lot of things, and maybe we never will. It does let us be amazed at how his creation is simple and perfect. For example, DNA, a simple string of nucleotide bases that is so similar between all species (from a mouse to an elephant) but creates such diversity to distinguish them (so dogs will have puppies, and humans will have babies), is plastic enough to allow change within a certain species. Crazy right? I just can’t help but smile at this and all the unbelievable things God makes possible.

Science hasn’t proven that God doesn’t exist. We might not have “concrete evidence” that He does, but isn’t that what faith is all about? Science and religion don’t conflict; together, they help us understand this mystery so much more. In the future when I have my job, I will be grateful that God gave me the ability to help those in need with science. Because without it, I would indeed be lost.

I believe that science and God can co-exist. What do you believe?

Let me leave you with a quote that was in my neuroscience lab,

“No one can stand in these solitudes unmoved, and not feel that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body” – Charles Darwin

(By the way, if you’re asking, “What kind of lab is this?” It was only the first couple slides that talked about this, and then it went on talking about neuroscience and the biology aspect of it.)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Natural Selection: Engagement Edition

(Talk about selective pressure on a college campus)

In my University, there’s a lovely tradition called “Ring by Spring.” We’re all under this time crunch to find the one we are going to be with for the rest of our lives. Who will be able to find their soul mate by the time spring rolls around senior year? Some are such over-achieves that they “put a ring on it,” you might say, even faster than they put on the freshman 15. Now that’s what I call making use of the limited resources. My friend and I were walking to class and two guys, who were casually talking about a short girl they had met the other day and how they were so interested in getting to know her, walked past us. The words, “I’m short, take me!” slipped out of my friend’s mouth without even thinking about it. Have we gotten to the point where we will are willing to take whatever comes our way? Okay, so he was pretty attractive, but my point still stands. It’s a huge pressure that is always surrounding us, especially now that we’re at that age where marriage is a possibility. Simply going to school to get your degree isn’t enough if you don’t have at least one serious relationship.

If you haven’t heard my parent’s love story….
It’s basically a Nicolas Sparks book x 100. So, that being said… I’m a strong believer one shouldn’t be obsessing over finding their soul mate. I promise, you won’t be eliminated from the gene pool. But that man of your dreams will come when you least expect it. My mom always tells me that when I do find the one, I’ll just know. Till this day, that confuses me; how do I know that I will know? I guess that means I haven’t found the one yet, or maybe I have but the timing hasn’t been right. But, since my parents have been married for 20 something years and got married literally a month after knowing each other and are still madly in love…. I will definitely be taking my mom’s advice! …. And you should too.
Why did I decide to make a blog post about marriage?

Well… here’s why.
I have this ideal way I want my life to play out
1) Meet my husband during my undergrad
2) Get into OT school
3) Get engaged
4) Finish OT school

5) Find a job
6) Get married
7) Work for a couple years

8) Travel with my husband
9) Have babies
10) That’s as far as I have planned out…

But want to know what’s really funny? It will be very unlikely for it to play out this way because I have no control over it. Only God does. It’s ridiculous for me to even want to plan my life because everything can change in a heartbeat. Life is a crazy adventure and I’m extremely excited to see where it takes me. So, there’s no need to obsess over finding the one because when the time comes, it comes. (This also doesn’t just have to do with relationships.  It applies to other things in life; we could have our mind set on something and then the next day something comes and sweeps us off our feet). I’m currently enjoying spending time with friends and family and having the privilege to study what I love.  I wouldn’t have it any other way. So, when I do find the “one”, he will be the cherry on top of my already pretty awesome sundae.