Sunday, February 19, 2017

破碎的 hallelujah

One benefit of being a student is that your time is sectioned nicely into semesters, and I am now midway into my final one in NUS. Kisah ada pahit, ada manis, tapi Tuhan membuat segala sesuatu indah pada waktunya (Pengkhotbah 3:11, TB).


Wrapping up this week with intentional quiet reflection and self-examination. Our gracious God has reminded me about the 3 resolutions I had for 2017. A broken hallelujah to You, my King.

To be honest, when my uncle began his series of text messages that was sending the implicit message of me not caring enough for my family, I was (1) frustrated (2) indignant (3) prideful and resistant (4) almost hateful. I was like: What more do you want?! What more do you want from me, God? And, who are you to tell me what to do, can't you see I am doing good work? Aren't I already making the effort? (Doesn't help that I was already feeling quite shaken from something else and that uncle was being indirect)

Even now I find it difficult to reply his (oh gosh the automatic word that came to mind was stupid) long messages of wisdom sayings and guidance for life. Firstly, I don't really wanna read and think about them when I have other better sources of wisdom. Secondly, it really takes cognitive energy to do that which is something I do not want to expend. A struggle. May the Kang that reads this again next time have better things to say.

It's not like I cannot see the beauty and goodness in what he is doing for me. I mean, why would he even bother? Although I sense a kind of judgment passed which I don't like, I know he has mostly good intentions. So help me, Father.

Not just my uncle, but to examine how I love my family in the everyday and the mundane. Do I consciously honour my parents in the little things? Not to make it legalistic, so fill me with your love, Father. To walk the way of the cross.

This links to engaging the world for God, in that investments, even if I pour myself out- are still finite. In a sense I am a scarce resource. This morning I was prepping to lead Bible study for CG on the bus to church- I asked myself, am I giving my 100%? I feel like CG Wooo has been a ministry that I am spending less investment in. Should I feel bad about it? Sunday School also. I was quite tempted to just say I'm sick and go for 9.30 service instead of SS.

I guess it goes back to the question in today's Bible study: What eternal pursuits has God laid on your heart as being important for you to follow in this season of your life?

仰倒. 2 very cherished moments at SS today. Ariel suddenly said: Some people don't believe in Jesus and God. That opened up the opportunity to encourage her to trust God to bring people to Himself and pray continually. Then somehow she exclaimed: Life is unfair! Reframe: It is unpredictable and beyond control at times. But God carries us through. The class started singing He is Able spontaneously :')

Seocond Patronus was when we prayed with the children. They asked to pray for their family to be healthy, for their baby brother, and we prayed together for teacher Siew Mun who will be going for a major op. I could feel that the children were really praying, not the usual fidgety, and Siew Mun was touched too. Spirit-filled moment.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

回首1980

一个美好的早晨。吃着慢煎糕 (因为昨天在美食节目上看到厦门的慢煎糕好好吃)。我告诉妈妈,和表妹因为婆婆开始的Google 照片文件夹,有一张大姨的照片,照得好像模特儿,好美。妈妈说,你跟她讲,以后一定买好吃的给你吃。(哈哈我在爸妈眼里一直还是贪吃鬼)

过后我说,要找一个适合的旅行,不用走太多路,但也不是很轻松,带婆婆去。

 妈妈就说,带她去越南咯!爸爸插进一句:她哪都想去,要你们带她去。

 啊,不懂婆婆有没有跟你讲,以前有个邻居,现在中了Parkinson's,婆婆去看她,一直流眼泪,好心痛。她的手指鸡爪一样,虽然脑袋清醒可是不能动。我就跟她说咯,不要懒惰,现在可以走的时候就不要一直呆在家里。

 这个阿婶是有读书的,是她们当中的 leader 这样。

记得以前折报纸做纸袋, 以前哪里有plastic bag! 还有那些喝水的袋子,那些绳子都是手工串,绑的,现在都是机器 liao。100 个,两毛钱,补贴家用。我们还是比其他孩子幸运的啦,婆婆没有叫我们一定要做,喜欢做就做一下,没有说要在家里不可以出门。


哇,还有以前都是一块儿的,有个卖lor mai gaai 的,不知道她的名就叫她 lor mai gaai 阿姨。新年的时候,有一个邻居做kueh bangkit, 就会招我们:来啊来啊!以后久了就像一个commitment 了,每次都帮她。就在家门口烧炭,现在做这样,一定 tio complain! 她新年就一定会买一件新衣上门。


Ah Leng Ah Peng 的爸爸她们小时候就带到婆婆那边,拜拜就上班了。公公在家的时候就会带她们去kindergarten,会买吃的给她们,所以也是跟公公很亲。

 哦,公公也是每次买东西给我吃。公公说的,卖烧肉的,说这个baby 很可爱,就切烧肉给你吃。你这个贪吃的就吃了。

 好啦,快点喝完一起洗,不要浪费水。

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Humility// Merendah Diri

Saya tidak tahu betapa bangga saya. Saya kini boleh berdoa hanya, Tuhan menjaga keamanan, Holy Spirit be upon the very weak me dan membantu saya untuk merendah diri.

Seperti Yesus, beliau seperti buah padi makin berisi makin rendah.

Wow perkataan itu merendah. The actual bending/bowing down. Betul, biarlah saya merendah diri. To forget myself, this broken weak self. I need to admit that there was a lot of self involved. Pride- my greatest enemy how I hate it to its very core.

Collateral beauty- in a sense saya mesti terima kasih kepada Tuhan kerana melalui situasi ini saya boleh memeriksa diri saya. Dan boleh merasa bagaimana kawan-kawan saya berasa tentang semua ini. Thank God that He has shown me how indeed all my good works are like filthy rags. I have been reflecting: Saya berjalan di sini, di situ- tetapi have I been running well? I can only give all praise to Abba who has taken these filthy rags by His grace, for His glory.

Tengah hari ini tidak senang- bapa saudara implying that I have been neglecting the family (namely, my 奶奶), and then got to know of the offense made. Particularly for my 大姑丈 I was quite convicted by the sense of injust I felt. Who was I to feel this way when he has been the main caregiver for my grandma who has been in and out of the hospital twice in this month? I feel that I should honour and give him the due respect as well. Which my damn prideful heart is not willing to cede. Lord help me. It was easier (much more so) with the other offense I had made. Merendah diri. Budaya Melayu betul-betul sangat indah.

Dari Mazmur 125 yang menenang hati saya:
Nyanyian ziarah.
125:1 Orang-orang yang percaya kepada TUHAN adalah seperti gunung Sion yang tidak goyang, yang tetap untuk selama-lamanya.
125:2 Yerusalem, gunung-gunung sekelilingnya; demikianlah TUHAN sekeliling umat-Nya, dari sekarang sampai selama-lamanya.

Yahweh, come and be the shalom amongst us, in us. O come, O come, Emmanuel.

//Afterward
Listening to the very same hymn I was listening sorrowfully this afternoon.Terima kasih kepada Tuhan keranaNya membantu saya untuk merendah diri. Went home to watch the video clip that my Uncle sent to bring across his message to me- prayed that I will honour him, to be humble, as Christ emptied Himself and became obedient even unto death. What am I, that I should hold to my self so tightly?

And so, I typed a sincere and I hope response that will be favourable in his eyes. No reply yet, but he has read it. I just wanna go and sleep after typing these.

Sanctification: Interhall worship and prayer was good :) I really loved how there was equal measure of worship and prayer, was initially worried it might veer towards the former. I think I succeeded at being a wallflower, which is great. Thank God for the tonsillitis, which helped greatly in making sure I just stayed in the background. At some point (I found it quite funny), I went behind the curtains to look out at Temasek Hall outside as Idelle was praying- wallflower points up. I am very thankful for the chance to pray together with the hallies and Faith, to intercede, to bring before me the faces of strangers- 那些隐约的面孔,都交托给神父您慈爱的手里。Rejoice, rejoice, Emmanuel shall come to thee O Israel.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

听见下雨的声音

It is actually raining right now, and I reluctantly close my windows to stop the rain from wetting the matte floor. Nyanian hujan betul-betul menarik hati irama, hujan di lantai konkrit menangkanku.

终于听见下雨的声音,于是我的世界被吵醒
Reminds me of my first love, how I am seeking to let my perspective be changed to mirror God's- and it's a kind of awakening, to a far better, rain-washed world. Mercy drops round me are falling, but for the showers we plead. This genius knows that love causes someone begin to take on the loved's lens.


窗台上滴落的雨滴,轻敲着伤心,凄美而动听 (this line is so beautiful look at the nuances and metaphorisation in the Chinese language and culture)
Brings me back to yesterday's Diversity Symposium :') Much feels 好感动 sangat terharu. Being in front of everyone was initially quite D: but after I got over being self-conscious (the blazer and choker and looking good helped alot, superficial I know) I really enjoyed looking at these people there. Taking notes, listening intently; some of these my dear friends. Hehe someone was very happy when Dr Janil gave a mini speech about preserving Chinese culture and values.

凄美而动听 | Thursday Year 4 prayer got us to read Psalm 84 and to share a verse that spoke to us. This is beautiful, especially when I knew the context of how Jewish travelers in the dry desert would give thanks for the dry valley as well.
"As they walk through the valley of Baca , They make it a spring; The rain also covers it with pools. They go from strength to strength; Each one appears before God in Zion." (v6-7)


青苔入镜,檐下风铃,摇晃曾经
回忆 是 一行行无从, 剪接的风景,爱始终年轻

Kinda wistful/wishful thoughts- Was looking at I:) and being looked at (I think) by Cat unsettled me a bit. I:) mainly because it was really so nice to talk to him- I will always cherish that conversation we had on the staircase, just after I had my heart broken over the brokenness in this world. "How are you?" That insistent asking. May the staircase lead up to eternal life. Will cherish the laughter over conversation with someone who knows where I am coming from also.

幸福也可以, 很安静,我付出一直很小心
Thank you, thank you, and thank You who brought us to cross paths. By no coincidence have we crossed paths in this way, and I really pray that y'all have been/will be blessed by me in some way.

Sidenote: It occured to me how I can introduce myself in interfaith circles-
100% Chinese, trying to be more Chinese and Malay. Christian, trying to be less Christian and more Christ-like. Wants to have a Christian Malay wedding at some void deck and invite the kampung fellowship over.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Diversity

I think I will have more thoughts after the Diversity Symposium but writing these down now when I have a pocket of time. Had a pretty good time at Diversity Fest- extrovert mode full on. (Afterward I blasted Chinese songs- 野子! JJ Lin! Jay Chou!- in the computer lab for some downtime)

Should I be more dogmatic? That was a question I asked myself over a solitary lunch. Like to be more inclined to share about my faith and beliefs.

Today was a good time, talking to different people. Really diversity. There was this girl from Yong Siew Toh (rare!), from China, and Muslim (even more rare). Then Indians who were Christian, one living Dubai.

I really enjoyed conversing to them about their life experiences and beliefs :) though yeah, at the end if people asked how many people have I shared the gospel to I would say none.

Perhaps that question is arising from a gross overemphasis on direct evangelism- which I almost recoil from. And that's why I get squeamish about anything that has the whiff of such evangelism.

Today's mini conversation with V. encouraged me a lot though- really admire his guts and drive to be working in these countries, and with 2 kids somemore. Wheee excited to meet him soon and perhaps work plans into my grad trip~


Saturday, February 4, 2017

感动






正有点不开心地折这些卡片,
我的阿爸走进我的房间。

 手拿着药膏弯着腰,
 说:你的脚怎么这样
 要擦这个。









 我说:用了菱锌矿
 阿爸说没用的是擦这个。

 手指就把白白的膏涂在红红的蚊子叮上
脚伸出时想到了耶稣洗使徒的脚。


 过后折的卡片,
 一张张成为我给同学的祝福。
 

 

Friday, February 3, 2017

Engaging People

For some reason, every time I reflected that I am becoming more extroverted, the immediate reaction was to deny, like being an extrovert is a bad development. I have indeed developed my ability to be extroverted from having to interact with so many people all day everyday (an exaggeration: I'd be hiding at home now if it were so).

Wanted to write this down before I sleep (strangely buzzing-awake, without caffeine, probably the itch from the multiple mosquito bites on my feet?!). Reflections from interactions.

1. Dignity
I realised that perhaps it is not the act of asking money or saying that one is poor that robs one of dignity, or accepting financial help even. Perhaps it is the value and meaning we place on money. Why is it so 'shameful' that I am less well-off? Does that make me more coarse? Perhaps.

But ultimately I think it boils down to what/whom we based our dignity on. I have grown to not be ashamed of my humble(ish) background, especially when interacting with my 'cream of the crop' JC classmates or church peeps from more privileged families. Really, to take myself lightly. To know that I have repose in Christ.

2. Active listening
For this reason I guess I am able to maintain an open stance, to really listen to another's perspective. To even be curious about how they have come to form these perspectives. Feel like this is something Christians have not been very ready to do, for a fear coming across as endorsing what is shared for example. Or another reason which Vincent brought up was that we think it's a waste of time. For myself as well- sometimes with all the commitments I try to shirk from the interfaith ones, which upon deeper thought I should be spending more time on because we are called to be in the world.

Listening is a powerful way to be out there, though it feels like one has a lower hand. But this is not a competition or battle! We are talking about engaging people here.

3. Earning trust
Something I got reminded of when talking to Pris. Sounds very trite but I'm thinking about this process of seeming inactivity and complicity into the very system you wanted to change. While at the same time being very intentional in introducing ideas.

Okay dokes. Avelene says I might have teaching gift haha I have been affirmed so much these 2 weeks for various stuff. Soli Deo gloria.