Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tag, You're it!

Isaiah at Joie de Vivre tagged me to reveal seven things that most people don't already know about me. So, here it is...

1. I like to reminisce about the good ol' days even though they're not really all that good (especially the 80s).

2. I don't like pets (except maybe gold fish. It's something to do with the water and the way they swim; It looks so relaxing)

3. I'm quite a gadget freak. Don't even start with me regarding Apple stuff.

4. I know I shouldn't but I have problems with self-confidence.

5. I like to travel and watch time-travel movies. If I could travel through time, I definitely would go back to the 80s.

6. I can't stand self-righteous or legalistic Christians.

7. I like to cook (I make mean hot-and-sour soup) and watch cooking show or go to cooking blog (I'm not saying whose...Carol)

That's it about me. Now I'm gonna tag:

1. Jeremy Myers of Till He Comes Blog
2. Carol Rode of Oh for the Love of Food Blog
3. Michael Rumende of Rejoice in the Lord Always Blog

C'mon guys. Keep the ball rolling. This is fun.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

The Dog and The Shadow Pt. 2

When I was in Singapore Bible College, I had a lecturer who later became my spiritual mentor. His name is Sabin Huang. I would go to his house every Monday morning to talk to him about anything and absorbed his wisdom as much as I could. His style was rather unconventional, to say the least. He was not a conformist, but in a good way. He's a brilliant lecturer, an astute Bible student, and to me, a wonderful mentor. He even preached at my wedding and was instrumental in my going to Dallas Theological Seminary.

One of the things I remember he taught me was the spiritual application of this fable. He even drew up a diagram (see above) which I think connects brilliantly a lot of theological truth taught in the Scripture. He said, ”The devil often tries to make us think like the dog and plays mind games with us and tricks us into giving up what we already have to get what we do not need. What we have is Christ. He fulfills all our Needs. We are complete in Him (Colossians 2:10) But the devil makes us think that we need more. - More love, more security, more approval and acceptance. When we try to grab the Idols that seem to provide us with more love, more security, and more approval, we lose the opportunities to enjoy our abundant life in Christ. “

Distinguishing between what is real and counterfeit, between needs and wants, between what God offers and what the devil offers, is indeed critical to the success of our walk with God.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

The Dog and The Shadow

I love Aesop's fables. I think the dude was a genius. One of my favourites was a story about a dog and his shadow. A Dog was crossing a bridge over a stream with a piece of meat in his mouth, when he happened to see his own reflection in the water. He thought it was another dog with a piece of meat twice as big; so he let go his own meat, and dove into the water to attack the other dog to get the larger piece. But, of course, he got neither. One meat was only a shadow, and the real meat he already had was carried away by the current.

What shadow have we been chasing in place of the real thing? Lord help us not to become like that dog.

So God said, in effect, “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” It wasn’t long before they were living in a pigpen, smeared with filth, filthy inside and out. And all this because they traded the true God for a fake god, and worshiped the god they made instead of the God who made them—the God we bless, the God who blesses us.
(Romans 1:24-25; the message)

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Thank You Jeremy!

As promised, I want to give credit and say a quick thank you to Jeremy Myers of TILL HE COMES Blog. He has kindly given me the permission to reproduce the "What would you say?" article in my previous post. I highly recommend his blog (now linked to mine) for the much needed teachings on the unconditional grace of our Lord Jesus Christ for sinners (which is the theme of my blog). You will also find solid teachings on the Bible, Church, and Theology there. So far, he hasn't written anything I would consider heretical... yet. Ha! Just kidding Jeremy :-) Keep up the good work brother!

Monday, September 24, 2007

What would you say?

Imagine yourself in church, and as the service starts, a young couple sits down in front of you. You are a bit surprised to see them in church, because you know one of them from work. He is not the kind of guy you think would come to church. But here he is!

As the service starts, the worship leader invites everybody to stand and greet those around them. You do, and warmly greet the couple in front of you. The guy you know from work says they came because you are always talking about how great your church is. You are excited he came because of that, but are a little nervous because you know he isn’t the church type. The couple isn’t married, but is very sexually active, and don’t have any qualms about public displays of affection. You hope they don’t hold hands or kiss during the service.

But wouldn’t you know it…as the music starts, each puts one arm around the other and they hold each other close. Then, after a few minutes, they start holding hands. You look around nervously. Not even many married people hold hands when they are in your church, and you are afraid how this couple’s affection will be taken, especially since you know most people know that they are not married.

During the sermon, they sit close enough to each other that they are touching, but that’s about it. After the service is over, they turn around to greet you again, and say, “You were right! We really liked attending here. I think we will come again next week.”

What would you say to them? Who would you introduce them to? Would you tell them to not hold hands next week? Would you tell them about a six-inch rule for unmarried couples? Would you tell them that sex before marriage was a sin and God did not approve of fornication?

Oh, and before you answer, I forgot to tell you… The couple is gay. It’s two guys. Now, with that information, what would you say?

(I got this from another blog. I've been talking about inviting people to church, so I think this is relevant. I really want to know your answer, so please leave your response by clicking the "comments" below. I'll tell you where I get this from later because I don't want you to read people's responses there.)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I'd rather have a messy son...

Just in case you read this and you don't know, Hulda and I've been married for 10 years before we finally have Jayden in January 2006. He truly is a miracle baby because doctors told us that the only way we can ever hope to have a baby is through IVF. I guess God had other plans.

So Jayden is almost two and he's at a stage where he knows how throw tantrums, blows at people he doesn't know, and generally disobeys our orders. I have to be honest that it can be frustrating at times and I often wonder if I could return him to where ever he came from. JUST KIDDING!!!

A couple of days ago Jayden had terrible fever. His temperature was high (39.6 deg c) but his hands and feet were cold. I rushed back from the office to take care of him as it was too late for Hulda to cancel her teaching. I gave him panadol and put cool wet cloth on his forehead to keep the temperature down. Later that day we took him to the doctor and the doc said he has gastroenteritis. I thank God for concerned friends who prayed for him and for us.

That afternoon, seeing Jayden just laying there helplessly in my arms made me realise how much I love him despite his tantrums and his disobedience. I'm sure I'm not the only parent who feels this way but I really wish it was me who was sick.

As our heavenly Father, I'm sure that's how God feels when he sees us suffer or struggle with sins. He's not the God who just can't wait to punish us every time we made a mistake. Exodus 34:6 says that The LORD is "the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness." Similarly, Numbers 14:18 says "The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion."

We waited 10 years before we had a son. Yea, Jayden frustrates me at times. But, I thank God that I even have a son. I wouldn't trade him for anything. I think that's exactly how God feels about me and you. The message of the well-known story of the prodigal son who decided to come home to his father after living a life of sin is loud and simple but clear. God is saying to us "I'd rather have a messy son than have no son at all."

Friday, September 7, 2007

Quote of the Week and apologies for Lack of Updates

I want to apologise to my few but faithful readers out there in the blogworld for the lack of post in the last couple of weeks. I'm not making any excuses but I've been preoccupied lately with work and my son Jayden has not been 100%. Praise God things are looking up now and God willing, I shall post a new entry soon. Meanwhile, here's a quote for you to ponder. "To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment." Ralph Waldo Emerson