3 Life Lessons I Learned From The Bible

I was born into a very Catholic family. My mother was once a member of the choir, my parents got married TWICE (just because they originally married civilly, but wanted to be married under the church as well), and I went to a very catholic elementary school. Through the years, I eventually ended up quite active in the church community as well. I was part of the choir for five years, I was casted in multiple church plays (including: starring as Jesus for the annual Passion Play two years in a row) and I volunteered and preformed for multiple events (like the annual Mother's Day Dinner+Dance and the Youth Group concerts). Let's just say I grew up very active in the community.


While most kids were excited for Lent season because it meant we were leading up to Easter (Yay, Chocolates!), I was always excited for Lent because, for some reason, I would always unintentionally end up on a spiritual journey - teaching me new lessons about life. I guess, since it is around my birthday, I spent a lot of time reflecting and trying to improve myself. In many ways, because I was tied so closely to the church, the bible was more than my religion - it became my life philosophy. As I continued to age and I began inching out of my parent's protective shelter, I've encountered a lot of life changing experiences (especially in my early teens) that have helped shape who I am today - and during those times of trial, these verses (whether in or out of context) really spoke to me at the time. Funny enough, all of the stories I share with you today, all happened during Lent Season, leading up to Easter - how could these stories of self-discovery be more fitting? lol.

Disclaimer: I get it - not everyone believes in God. To each their own. No matter what you believe in, please be respectful of my (or any other person's) thoughts, feelings and opinions. If you have no interest in chatting about religion, please kindly exit out, and a new post will be live next Sunday. I write from my own personal experience. Also, I am using the English Standard Version (ESV) Translation Of The Bible for reference, if anyone was wondering. I have also changed people's names to protect their privacy - as I know some still follow me on social media and read my blog from time-to-time.


Some People Will See Your Success As A Threat.
"It Was Out of Envy That They Handed Jesus Over" (Mark 15:10)



I had a very hard time, socially, in my early teen years. My friends and I used to get bullied a lot by this one girl (Let's call her Macy). Every little thing I'd do, she's turn into a vice to bully me with. She'd pretend to be my "friend" and then go off gossiping about me to others. If I had a crush on a boy at school - she'd pressure me into telling her then tell everyone in our grade; if I bought new earrings, she'd give me attitude because they'd be a similar style to one's she owned (even if she wasn't wearing them that day AND they weren't even bought from the same place); I even made a YouTube channel once of myself singing and she took it upon herself to rip it to shreds with hateful words. It was like it was her life goal to make my life miserable!

Anyways, it wasn't until I was much older - when I was fully removed from her toxic environment - that I realized she continued to ridicule me because she envied me. What did she envy me for? Probably for my social openness - as I was friendly with everyone - unlike her who barely had one true friend. Possibly for my talent - as I was always chosen for solos in the school choir while she was only given a cow bell to play. I will never be able to tell you exactly what it was, but I can tell you she was a very unhappy young girl who loved to hurt others to make herself feel better about herself.

Reflecting back many years later, it definitely is a strong lesson about the adult world. It's true - not everyone is going to be proud of your success. I've learned that despite bullies who persecute you, you decide how you  take matters into your own hands. You can let their actions beat you down - letting them win; Or you can be the bigger person and keep being yourself. Many years later, I feel the experience has helped me embrace my overly-friendly personality, my crazy sense of style, and my sprouting creative mind. I feel like if it weren't for that experience, I wouldn't know the power of cutting toxic people out of your life.


Even Those You Trust Will Betray You
And Peter remembered the saying of Jesus, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly (Matthew 26:75)



We've all had that experience in our lives where we had friends who said they had your back through thick-and-thin, then cut once you actually need them to have your back. We all know how that feels. It's an extremely crappy feeling when you put you full trust in a person only for them to leave you hanging when you need them the most.

Well, when I was 11, I had just moved back to Toronto and joined a close group of girls. They soon became my best friends. We'd video call each other, every day after school on MSN. We'd share our passwords to our "Locked" LiveJournal accounts (so that they could read the rants/vents we had for the day). We'd pass around our meals like a buffet at lunch time every day. We had hundreds of generic early 2000s "squad" photos (which, might I say, I still have on my external drive). We even strategically planned room accommodations so we'd be bunking with each other every time we went on an overnight field trip. They were my best friends up until high school. 

Around the end of my grade 8 year, someone started a very nasty rumour about me, that got the whole grade talking about it (heh, it was probably Macy *eye roll*). You see, I went to a big elementary school (with a graduating class of over 250 kids). It's a big deal when you have the whole grade assuming this nasty rumour is true. It was humiliating to hear, and defeating that no one would take the time to ask if it were true - they all just assumed it was. 

Anyways, when we got back to school on Monday, something was very off in my group of friends. Everyone seemed to get quiet whenever I came up to the group, it seemed like they were slowly inching away from me to avoid being seen around me, and they eventually had the audacity to tell me "My parents don't want me to be friends with you because of what you did". None of them even bothered to ask if it were true, what really happened, or at least stay by my side while I felt like the whole rest of the world (or I guess the school - but at the time it felt like the world) was against me. I mean, we were "best friends" right?

That was a very hard hit of reality. It was the moment in my life when I realized that even the people who you thought you could trust with your life will eventually betray you. It taught me to be cautious with who I entrusted with my entire life and to not be surprised when people did disappoint me. But most of all, it was the turning point in my life when I learned that I needed to be my own best friend before relying on others. In that time of my life, I spent a lot of time feeling alone, which helped me build up the strength to be a strong, independent woman in society. I don't have anxiety going to public washrooms alone; I enjoy shopping at the mall or enjoying lunch by myself at Panera Bread; and I genuinely feel at peace knowing that I have learned how to take care of myself without the help of others.

Fast-forward to many years later, there isn't any bad blood between any of us. I still follow them all on social media, we will reflect on the "good old times" every now and then on Facebook, and I still wish them success and happiness in their lives as we all continue to grow older. I forgave them - but our friendship, after that turning point in my life, never went back to how it used to be. Nevertheless, if it weren't for that point in my life, I wouldn't be who I am today, so if any of you guys are reading this - Thank you!


Forgive Others.
As the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. I think one of the strongest lessons I've learned is the power of forgiveness - on others, on my heart, and on my soul. (Colossians 3:13)


Speaking of forgiveness of those who betrayed me - the bible really helped remind me the importance of forgiveness. I've come to accept that people are always going to hurt you, but it is your choice how you decide to let that affect your life. 

When I was 15, I went through my very first heart break. I had been dating this guy since I was 13 years old and I genuinely loved him - as much as a young 15 year old could understand the meaning of love, anyways. He was my first boyfriend, my first kiss, my first slow dance, my first date - almost all of my firsts. It was puppy love. Let's call him "Patrick". 

Well, when high school started I ended up moving to another town and eventually broke up a year later. Two months after our break up,I found out through a mutual friend that he met a girl at the mall and started to date her. I was heart broken. I wasn't his girlfriend anymore, but I thought he'd wait for me. We had this whole plan how we'd wait until after high school, then finally be back together. My dreams were crushed and I was so distraught.

Turned out, a couple days later, a few priests were visiting our high school to hold Confession. I didn't really have anything in mind to confess, but I had such a heavy feeling in my chest I couldn't bear any longer - so I decided to go for the first time in my high school career. It turned out to be one of the best decisions in my life. I told Father that I felt guilty for not being happy for Patrick and that I was filled with envy of this new girl. I was in tears as I expressed my feelings to him. I kind of felt silly, at the time, as I realized he was a priest, not a counselor. But, instead of telling me to pray a bunch of Our Fathers and Hail Marys, he took my hands and said to me: 

"God is the father and he is a King. That makes you a Princess. Treat yourself like royalty. Don't undermined yourself for a Boy if he cannot appreciate royalty. It's okay to feel upset, but forgive him and let it pass. Don't waste your life waiting for someone who doesn't appreciate you." 

And those words have struck me like thunder 7 years later. He was right. Why was I spending my time flustered and heart broken over a boy who I thought loved me then moved on to another girl two months later? Since this realization, I genuinely have felt like a happier person. It has taught me to cut off toxic people, but also genuinely forgive them so there isn't a part of them still weighing me down. I feel like this lesson has made me into a stronger person, helping me realize that I control how other people's actions affect me. It creates a certain uplift of power to honestly be able to say "I have forgiven you" and you can finally be free from bad taste in your mouth they left. 

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These were three life lessons I've learned from the bible about growing up. I hope you take some time this long weekend to reflect on your own life and your spiritual philosophy - whatever choice that may be - to grow into a better version yourself this week! Happy Easter!

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