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Infantile Reflections

Having been a social worker for just close to 2 months, I must first apologise in advance if I make it seem as though I have passed a judgment or sound very coldly cognitive.

My peers' very raw experiences of witnessing family violence, together with the Rohingya crisis, stir up visceral emotions of anger, horror and helplessness. Of which, I am quite sure, a few degrees removed I am sure. This week during supervision I was confronted with the fact that I have been engaging the youths I am supposed to counsel in a more cognitive way, when the root of the issue are heart matters like belonging to a family, trust, and feeling loved.

"What is happening to you in the counseling room as your client shares this?" 
Social work is a spiritual journey, I am sure of it. We, or I, must confront the questions pertaining to God so as to forge ahead more boldly with the people we work with.

A lot of these questions start with 'Why'?

Ecclesiastes reminded me again of how I have …

Dreams

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Dreams verbalised to and encouraged by different friends. Vague as they are- do I even know what I am talking about?
"Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God's work from beginning to end."
Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NLT)
一步一步要凭着信心走 - 求神扩大我的心。
"A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice; he will not falter or be discouraged until he establishes justice on earth. In his law the islands will put their hope."   Isaiah 42:3-4 (NIV)

Shalom

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Sitting at the window seat of National Gallery cafe now with the natural sunlight filling the whole space.
Such moments like that echo of shalom. 
Are they incompatible with the broken realities of the world?
This question I have struggled with in my freshman year as I come face to face with human suffering and broken families. 
I've thus far managed to come to a healthy (or so I think) tension where I know that shalom moments come by 'the slow, steady engagement with and practice of God's will' (Bruggemann, in Evangelism and Discipleship). Yet, have things become too convenient?
For convenience is indeed the goal of the dominant culture. 
There is no conclusion to this, for the corollary of the above statement is that because Christians called to the alternative of shalom, we are constantly reclaiming zones of alternative culture.

In the same breath I thank God for the blessings I have at work, of very cherished friendships and exciting projects, I wonder if I am al…

Divine Discontent // A Life of Generosity

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News of the Rakhine being stuck in no-man's land between border guards and the Myanmese army made me want to know where this border is exactly. Sometimes the amount of bad news from the same places everyday makes things feel 'standard'.

But no, part of our battle for the truth is that each piece of such news belies the lives of eternal souls. These souls have history of rich experiences, they can be so resilient, yet I can't ever imagine the trauma and its after-effects on them.

I was looking at those borders between the nations. Looking at the map, I understood better why Italy and France have so many Libya and Algeria refugees. Borders are a de facto part of the world. We don't really question the fundamental anxiety that's driving each country to protect its borders, do we?

I am part of the anxiety. Let the refugees in, and there will bound to be societal changes. Let the foreign workers come, but they are only acceptable if they meet our sector needs and d…

Dear Mongolia

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Dear Mongolia,

May I bless you. I cannot yet do that with my skills and I cannot speak your language, but more importantly I cannot see beyond even the next hour (thinking what am I going to do for this morning at work lol).

将来的事,除了耶和华,谁能测度?

Yet the skills and experiences that I acquire, the people that I meet, I know they are leading me on. Where, I do not know, but God knows. Maybe I will bless you from afar.


I really love your horses, yaks, cows and sheep, and the grandeur of the vast nature out there. (Sometimes more than your people, I confess) My heart sinks when I think about how the nomads are suffering because of the dzuds ("severe winters made worse by preceding droughts), and so many are flocking to the UB capital but face other kinds of hardships.

But perhaps, in that city that has become so familiar and dear, there will be a brighter light found among the city lights, that does not cease shining, especially in the darkest night.

Dear Mongolia, I guess I miss you. But…

Praise

"The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold,
but man is tested by the praise he receives." Proverbs 27:21 Don't you find it interesting that the testing is 'praise' and not fiery trials? 
Constantly amazed at how the Word upends our notions and challenges beliefs so ingrained in us: of what it means to be blessed (Matt 5:3-11), of who is wise in God's eyes (1 Cor 2:6-10), our favoritism and who is blessed by our Father (James 2:1-5).
You see the depths of our hearts and You love us the same. In this age of post-truth, Your Word ever challenges the social norms and what we take for as "business as usual".

Half-Awake Prayers

By His great grace alone, God hears half-awake prayers. That is, those first few half-coherent sentences jumbled with other passing thoughts that my mind mumbles every morning.

"We are, like earthworms, cabbages and nebulae, objects of Divine knowledge. But when we (a) become aware of the fact... and (b) assent with all our will to be so known, then we treat ourselves, in relation to God, not as things but as persons. We have unveiled. Not that any veil could have baffled His sight. The change is in us." (C.S. Lewis in Prayer: Letters to Malcolm, emphasis added)

What an awesome gift and privilege prayer is - to be able to meet God face to face, even bringing incoherent babble or faithless (and thus empty) words at times.

Writing this in the morning before I prepare to head out for a new work day; it is prayer that makes me ready and refreshed for the work ahead.