Thursday, December 11, 2014

True Grit


What does it mean? According to the dictionary it means:

Courage and resolve; strength of character.

I'm currently reading Bear Grylls' book True Grit. I just finished it the other day and am now reading his autobiography Mud, Sweat and Tears.
Bear Grylls truly inspires me. He's a man who explores, survives and continually grows in strength and never lets moments bring him down. He always rises above them and learns from them.
His True Grit book is full of stories from many different people out there in the world who were put in unbearable, unplanned situations but never let themselves be overcome with fear and they never gave up no matter what. They could be in the South Pole or climbing Mt. Everest watching their friends die before their eyes or unexpectantly losing most of their provisions, they still never gave up. They could be captured by the enemy and put in a concentration camp where they had to bear excruciating torture for months, sometimes years, they still never gave up even when they saw thousands dying around them. Or they were even forced to cut their own hand off or sacrifice their own lives for their friends.

What made them different to the others around them? Not physical strength. It was all mental and emotional strength that got them through. It's all in the mind, they never gave up, they forced themselves to never give up even when death seemed like the better option than bearing bleeding gums and maggots crawling all over their skin amongst other things.

They portrayed true grit. We can also look at the synonyms for the word grit:

Courage, courageousness, bravery, pluck (spirited and determined courage), mettle (a person's ability to cope well with difficulties; spirit and resilience), backbone, spirit, strength of character, strength of will, moral fibre, steel, nerve, gameness, valour, fortitude, toughness, hardiness, resolve, determination, resolution, stamina, doggedness, tenacity, perseverance, endurance, guts, spunk (courage and determination).

This is a making of a warrior. God needs people with a strength that can go against the enemy and crush his soldiers because God's soldiers are mentally and emotionally stronger. Your body can give up long before your mind will and in the end it's your mind that can push your body to limits that you never knew you had.

So many people today don't have true grit. They don't stand up during hard times and have a positive state of mind. Most of the time they let difficulties defeat them and in turn they never reach their full potential.
Remember that the enemy first attacks your mind. He knows that once he's in your mind he can have full control of your life so we need to keep our mental walls strong against him, recognize his lies of deceit and fight against it. God will test you. My word will He test you.

If you pray that God will train you to be His warrior. Wait and watch how He will take you to places that you never thought you'd go but He'll be right there beside you, training you, preparing you for battle, training you for war. Just today i felt like giving up. For so long i've had to be strong (my family always reminds me that through everything i've been the strongest), to stay positive and it's so easy to give up. When you've been tested for so long you get tired. So very tired. But the stories that i've read in True Grit kept niggling at me. If they can survive that, i can survive this.
To be God's warrior i need to be as strong as steel mentally before He starts training me physically. I believe that all the desires that i have in my heart are from God. I know that He's preparing me for something in the future. I don't see the picture now but i need to trust that through all the hardships, He's doing this all for my own good. Because He loves me and if i want to be used by Him in a big way then i need to give up the comforts of having a normal lifestyle.
I believe very strongly in my heart that one day i'm going to join the army. It's my desire, i have no passion for anything else in life. Some may think i'm crazy but i can't shake this feeling. I've tried, but it's too strong and grows stronger every year. I know that my prayer to God to mould me and train me to be His soldier is being answered. It starts in the mind and works from there.
I believe that when God feels like my mental training is over (it never truly ends but once the foundation is laid) He's going to start training me in other areas.

Never give up. Don't be like the many people out there who choose a comfortable, easy life. Choose to be one of them who forsakes the comforts of life and rises up to change the world. But if you want to be that type of person be prepared for preparation and training. God needs people who He can trust to send out into the field to face the enemy. His greatest warriors. Strive to be one of them. Don't settle for less.

Strive to have true grit!

Monday, December 8, 2014

New Addition// Tattoo #2

Sunday I got another tattoo. Don't worry, just because I got 2 tattoos with little time spacing them out doesn't mean that I'm going to be covered by the time I'm 25. I've wanted a tattoo since I was 16 years old so for the past 3 years I've been thinking a lot about what I want and the Chesed one and this one are the ones that I've had my mind set on. Why wait? 
I really trust the tattoo artist near me, considering how in SA there's really no rules on how or who gets a tattoo (you don't have to be a registered tattoo artist and you can be below 18 without parents permission. Heck, a 6 year old can get a tattoo legally. Nuts.). He's very clean and he's a friendly guy so before we move I wanted to get these 2. 
This tattoo doesn't have any meaning for me. I just really love the way it looks. It's shining because I've got a hectic amount of Vaseline on to prevent bad scabbing. 
Since this one has more detail than my other one it was more painful but not too much. Apparently the thinner the lines the more needles he has to used. So for my Chesed one which has thick lines he only used 1 needle, this one though he had to use 3 needles. I didn't mind, some spots were more painful but no tears were shed :D. My Chesed tattoo the day after I got it was the worst. It was swollen and painful. I expected it to slowly get better day by day but the following morning it felt all better. So weird.

 This one is the same. Day after (right now) and my wrist is really sore. It's also quite swollen but i'm hoping that it will be a lot better tomorrow like my previous one.
You might wonder why on earth i would willingly inflict pain on myself like this. But honestly, it lasts for a few days and then it's forever gone and i'm left with an awesome tattoo that will last forever. Yeah ... forever. That doesn't phase me either BTW! I'm choosing my designs wisely and making sure that it can go with all different kinds of styles in case my style changes one day. I wanted a lion once, lol ... and then i thought better of it. 
My tattoo artist said that this is a nice design 'cause you can add anything on to it (if i want to later on) and also the lines are very thin and 'dainty' so as i get older it will hold a lot better than thicker lines. 
That's always good to know! My brother kept me company this time. Mom had to leave as Sebastian didn't like the sound of the ..... what is the tattoo, needle thing called? Anyway, you know that thing that makes that zzzzzzzzzz sound? Yeah, he didn't like it. My Chesed tattoo took about 10 minutes to do but this one took about 30 mins so by the end i did feel quite numb. Imagine a tiny needle poking through your skin for 30 mins non stop!

He uses a purple dye for the stencil. 

Thanks goes to my brother for taking the pictures.

I'm loving it. Truly.
My brother now wants a tattoo, lol. He's extremely scared of needles (i will never understand that phobia) so i'm not too sure how that will work out, lol. But he said that when he saw i wasn't crying or anything he's now rethinking it. Right ... you have to be really sensitive to pain to cry when getting a tattoo, exceptions being the ribs and the upper, inner arm. That is apparently extremely painful. Not going to test those waters!

Friday, December 5, 2014

A Girl in the Mall

She walks past.
I'm talking to my mom and don't notice her at first until I "sense" her looking at me.
I look back.
She smiles.
"I love your hair" she whispers.
"Thanks" I respond with a big smile.

I notice her appearance too.
Sort of gothic yet feminine. She pulled it off quite well without looking like a freak.
She walks into the shop ahead of me and I see her joined by an older couple. Parents? Grandparents?

I tend to be very observant and notice things that a lot of people don't.

There's a vibe about her.
You can sense it by the way she dresses.
Physical appearance is a glimpse into someone's personality.
Something familiar I sense about her. Very weird.

I notice she has a tattoo on her upper forearm.
Big, cursive letters.
"Life" it says.
She crouches down and peaks into the window of a small doll house.
I walk past her and take another look at her tattoo.
"Really pretty but wait ... what is that?"
Just a bit lower than her tattoo I notice something else ... something etched in her skin that's definitely not a tattoo.
It's white.
It's scars.
Not just any scars.
Scars that are too straight, too lined up with one another, too unnatural.

Self harm.

I noticed the signs. I got her vibe. I know it too well.

I kept looking for her in that store. Trying to catch another glimpse. Trying to bump into her to talk to her. Mom encouraged me to do so.

I finally got up the courage and walked up to her and asked about her tattoo. She showed it to me, strategically hiding her lower arm behind a packet of muffins.

Clear signs.
Those scars were put there for a purpose, a reason.
That was no accident.

While i walked away i felt sadness. Who is she? What is her story? What made her feel so depressed and hurt that she would take a knife to her own flesh to numb the pain?

But most importantly:
Has she chosen life? She clearly wants to be reminded daily to choose it.

She has such a bright smile and beautiful eyes. Her scars looked healed. Maybe she's already far on the road to recovery. I hope so. I sometimes think of her. Wondering how she's doing. Praying for her.

I hope she's victorious everyday in choosing in LIFE!!!