Sunday, July 28, 2013

My calling.

Why, oh God, have you placed me in Jenaris Home? What is your plan? What is my part in your plan? Why do you want me to become a nurse and insist on being one? How does me being a nurse fit into your plan? Why have you given that dream of your all consuming brightness hovering above Jenaris Home? And then the vision of the light descending upon Jenaris Home? Is that dream and vision really from you? I had once asked you, my God, was the nursing opportunity given by my superintendent or you. Is the briefing on the 15th August your reply? What are you preparing me for, my God?

What is it that you want me to do in Jenaris Home? Why do I get the feeling that I would only stay at Jenaris Home for around a year? Is that feeling real? Is it a whisper from you, oh Lord? If there is something that you want me to do, please tell me oh God. Tell me directly and clearly, for my ears had become deaf and eyes had become blind to you ways. I've strayed away from you, my Lord and Saviour. Forgive me, Father, for I'm not able to give myself fully to you. I'm just like Simon Peter when I say, "I love you, God." Help me Lord, show me the way to go. Never leave me, never forsake me. Help me overcome my unbelief and give me the courage to base my decisions on just 3 words, "God is faithful."

By myself, I can do nothing. You had already said so, my God. I need you. Yet, I'm not confident that you are at work in my life, for I know my transgressions and lack of faith. And the possibility that my transgressions and lack of faith is worst than I thought. Show me your mercy, oh God. Give me wisdom like Solomon and a full heart to you like David, God, my father. So that I can fulfil my part in your plan. Show me your grace, oh God, and do not let me forget you.

I will try my best to put my trust in your son, Jesus. For it is as you said, only Jesus have the power to save. Thank you, my God. Thank you, Jesus.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

How much has the world change since the fall and Jesus?

This thought came to me recently, how much has the world change since the fall, since Jesus died for us? Sadly, it is as Jesus said, it won't be much as in the end days, there will be an increase in wickedness (Matthew 24:12). Since the age of the fall, man had had been living behind a mask. A mask of strength, status and superiority. Until this very day, man still worship themselves and "modern idols" over God. What are "modern idols"? I guess that would be things like celebrities, technological gadgets, career etc. Which I come to really think of it, it isn't too far off from ancient times. The ancient "gods" like Artemis, Zeus, Yue Fei etc aren't actually too far off from being celebrities. Antiques aren't too far off from gadgets. And worshiping career had just spread from politicians to the common people.

The hearts of people, even believers, are straying away from God. The world is rotting from a blind spot of man and it is worsening. Man had pride their technological advances over God and God had proven by SARS and H1N1 that man's advance in technology is nothing in the eyes of God. We, urban dwellers, appear to be civilized but in truth, we are just as barbaric as ancient times, if not worst. Sincerity, childlikeness, anything that God considers to be good are all being scorned.

God, my Lord Jesus, have mercy on me and your people. Open our eyes that we may see, ears that we may hear, heart that we may repent and turn back to you. For you alone, Jesus, have the power to save.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Thoughts after Hope Conference 2013

Well, honestly, I'm sorry God, my Father in Heaven. You know I didn't prepare for this conference and I've been sinning. On top of that, I went to this conference with not much of an expectation other than making a decision to be loved by you. And really, I find that actually, accepting love can be quite difficult.

Wanting to accept love would mean to admit that I need love. To admit that I'm in need, to admit that I didn't have it all together, to admit that I'm weak. In short, tear down my pride. What to do, I'm just human. But well, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven..... Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth" (Matt 5:3, 5) is what Jesus said, so guess what, He mean it. For once, I can hear God whisper instead of talk. I can see God's work in His children and feel His guidance tangibly.

I felt God's presence supernaturally strong in this conference. I've asked God,"Have you forsaken me? Have you forgotten me?" God answered me twice. First was through Pastor Randy Park's ministers who said a word of wisdom for me. Second was during the conference through Pastor Rick Seaward, when he talked about missions to the rural areas. I've come to a point to know that my place is with the people. And I've prayed about going on missions, solo, to rural areas, wandering the land and reaching out to people along God's side. Well, Pastor Rick's anointing to our Senior Pastor confirmed that. But when I wanted to be prayed for about joining the missions field, God said not yet, quite audibly. So I guess God still have some preparation for me to do. Pastor Rick Seaward's sharing about decreasing needs, I've began to experience it some time ago. God had shown me that my needs are not as much as I thought. In fact, I'm planning to clear a lot of stuff from my room. God is going to train me to live with little, for the places I'm going have little.

Why not in a group? Why not with my church members? I've come to realize that my way of thought contradicts to how home grown Singaporeans think. Certain decisions I make, certain things I said bewilders my fellow Singaporeans. Usually, its non-Singaporeans who can better understand me.

Whatever it is, I sense that the path I'm going to take would be alone. Hopefully, I'm wrong.

During the Kairos Night, when Pastor Kristine (I think) lead us to all pray in tongues, God wanted me to keep quiet instead. To listen, to hear. I heard that His children's cries reaches the Heaven, I feel God listening to every single one of them. I also heard cries beyond the walls of the stadium. There are those like me, who had little chance to attend services. Those who work in operations field, involving shift works. My heart goes to my fellow nurses. When Mr Tony Tseng shared about having a service or worship catered to businessman, I wondered if it is possible for the same to be catered to people doing shift work. I wondered if anyone had suggested that to Pastor Jeff?

I'm really a weirdo, when Pastor Kristine (again, I think) urges us to weep for people. I ended up having joy. Well, its a period of harvest isn't it? I think it must be true because somehow, I can feel the joy of the harvest.

Honestly given my code of conduct and the dirty things I do in secret, I don't deserve to be revealed these things. But God, in His goodness gave me what I don't deserve. He died the death meant for me so that I can begin to live a life that I'm meant to live. Intimacy with God requires truthfulness to Him. I'm learning to cut the act with Him and show Him who I exactly am inside. I want to let Him love me because He wants to love me and all His children. If there is really something to prevent us from being loved by Him, surprisingly, that would most probably be ourselves.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Journey

It was said,"Life is a journey." But to me, life is a series of journeys that lies within a journey. A lot of times, we forgot why we start on a "mini journey", especially when hardship, persecution, challenge and a storm set in. Then we choose the inevitable choice of giving up and forget to hope.

God revealed to me how true it is that "hope is essential to life". But what is hope sustained by? Faith, that is to believe. To believe that things will turn for the better. How then, do we lose hope? I guess in our education, where facts overwrite everything, we forgot that we have a heart. We perceived that this world can be perfect by our calculations, it can be controlled. But that's a lie. This is an imperfect world. Everything come with good and bad points, strengths and weaknesses, advantage and disadvantages, etc. And that imperfection is in humans too. Most importantly, nothing is actually fully in control. We lose hope when we failed to believe in good and focus on the negative points of someone or something. My coach once believed that I'm the worst person to become a fighter because of my short legs and arms. But I did become a champion once, fighting someone who has longer reach than me, someone whom my coach believed that I'm dead if I were to be up against. Later I found out in a course that there is a weakness in people with long reach, i.e long limbs and there is a strength in people with short limbs. I guess God revealed that to me in that fight (before I was a believer and rebellious, Praise God). My coach believed he had control in everything and that all he knows is perfect. But God has proven him wrong by my victory.

It is through God, that I'm beginning to learn to accept imperfection, both in others, things and myself. It is right to seek perfection in ourselves, but a lot of time, we didn't realize that we are actually not seeking perfection but demanding it, especially from someone or something else. When that someone or something failed to meet our expectations, we forgot what attracted us to that someone or something in the 1st place and begin to see all the negative side of that someone or something and fell into despair. A lot of times, we ended up in total failure just because we simply forget why we started something in the 1st place.

But as life is also a series of repetitions, one journey that ended in failure doesn't mean there is no more journeys. The end of one journey is always the beginning of another. Maybe God made it so that life is a repetition of journeys to remind us why we started something in the 1st place. To help us learn where we went wrong and follow His guidance. To help us realize that we need Him. I was once told,"Its insane to do the same thing and expect a different result." I want to add that it is also insane to expect the external (you know, that someone or something) to change. Its easier, and already a handful, to change what's internal.

My conclusion to what sustains hope, faith in the good in people and things. Just as Jesus had, and still has, faith in the good in us when He chose to die on the cross for our sins, so we must have faith in the good of one another as well. Rejoice!! Our father in heaven has faith in us even when we are imperfection, so let us have faith in Him as well, who is perfect and TOTALLY good.

I would like to end this with an encouragement modified from a quote in the movie, Ironman 3:

"You can take away my gadgets, you can take away my toys, but you can't take away who I am. I am a son/daughter of God."

Saturday, March 9, 2013

What is a complete man in Christ?

It is said that Christ completes us. As a male species, I had no idea what is means until I come to a point to where I have to decide whether to end this pathetic life or continue to struggle with it. Not that I had understand it fully but I'm beginning to understand it. Life in essence, is meaningless as all life, great or puny, ends in a grave. So why struggle to live anyway? I used to find it a relief to have escape certain death a few times, but quoting a Korean drama, I think I might have missed it instead.

But God's plan is to save all. And I'm glad to have know Christ. He has opened the door to help me overcome my greatest fear, death (physically). This fear had paralysed me for many years, subconsciously. It has been said that,"Good men die young". I used to have a problem with dying young, so I avoided being a good man subconsciously. Now I realize that dying young is not really a problem, but not dying as a good man really is. I have been living as less than half of a man, now I will try to live as a complete man. Overcoming fear is the 1st step towards living a complete life in Christ I guess.

So what is a complete man in Christ? According to John Elderedge's book,"Wild at Heart", man are dangerous, but it must be guided by wisdom. A man that has yet to start overcoming his fear is not really dangerous for fear paralyses or hinders all actions. A dangerous man acts, he is also adventurous, willing to explore the unknown. However, such qualities must be guided by wisdom so that we do it for the right reasons. So this would be my conclusion thus far, a complete man in Christ is a dangerous and adventurous man that is guided by God and willing to obey Him. God will usually lead His into very wild (as I would call it) situations. All these for us to become a better man and grow closer with Him. In this world, we are only complete, not completed. We are only completed when we go back to Him or when Jesus comes back.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Reflections on 27th Feb 2013

God showed through the book of Job something interesting, how to comfort one in pain (both physical and emotional). When one is in pain, he/she is filled with a lot of negative emotions, sometimes to the point he/she wish that they weren't borned, in an extreme case. In the book of Job, he started lamenting and his friends started correcting him. As how the story ends, the friends ended up being the ones at fault.

What Job's friends said made some sense but one important ingredient was missing, the validation of Job's feelings. What Job feels at that point of time is normal for all who are at painful times. I can identify with Job because I had went through a similar state recently. Many had tried to advice me on my situation, however, what helped me was not immediate advice but immediate validation of my feelings, by my psychologist. What I learnt was that before any advice can go through, the person's feelings have to be validated 1st, otherwise, no amount of advice will go through.

Based on how I was helped, here are some steps I've learnt in the process, to help another:

1. Validation of feelings and help the person understand why he/she is feeling like that.
2. Ask questions that guides the person to seek solutions.
3. SUGGEST solutions only when the person seeks it.
4. Intercession, pray for the person with empathy. Do not use prayer as a mask for correcting the person or give advice. The result of that would be similar to what happened with Job's friends. Praying for God's deliverance and mercy would be good. After all, we have no idea what God's plan is for the person. Using Job as an example, the prayer can go something like this,"Father, my friend, Job, is in extreme pain. Why have you struck him? Enlighten him so that we may learn as well. Have mercy on him Father and deliver him from this ordeal. In Jesus name we pray, amen." In summary, the prayer should validate the afflicted person's feelings, raise questions and concerns that the afflicted may have, and GOD's answer for him/her, not our's, we are not God. We can also pray that we would benefit from whatever revelation that the afflicted might get from God so that we can grow with the afflicted.
5. And in all this, let Jesus guide our actions and may God bless His work through us.

Reflection on Job 9: 29, 32-35.

Job 9:29 says,"Since I am already found guilty, why should I struggle in vain?" Guilt, a deadly chain that binds us. Deadly in a sense that it kills us spiritually. Once we got caught by it, we can't shake it and be free from it easily. Then in Job 9:32-35,"He is not a mere mortal like me that I might answer him, that we might confront each other in court. If only there were someone to mediate between us,
someone to bring us together, someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more. Then I would speak up without fear of him, but as it now stands with me, I cannot." It addresses a problem. A barrier between God and us, our broken relationship with God.
And God had already provided the solution to that problem 2000 years ago, Jesus, our mediator between God and us. The one to remove God's rod from us such that we can speak up to Him without fear, so that we can be given an answer from God and be touched by God's love, which can forgive all our sins, heal our wounds and give us revelation.