Sunday, March 23, 2008

Tis' the season to be TESTED

Like what A FRIEND OF MINE said,




Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Picture post promised earlier

Hey all!

These are the pictures from China which I had promised a few posts before. Enjoy!

A closer look at my dad's cousins (one 81 and the other 79)

A very chinese traditional way of taking photograph

Some of the family members of my dad's cousins' family

The younger generation in the family (the 2 teenagers on the left are the young couple who had married young and have a baby - carried by his great-grandfather)

This is how their school uniform looks like

This is how the "chinamen" look like

My mum's aunty's family

Friday, March 14, 2008

A moment of ungrace

Just a few moments ago, I felt a moment of ungrace as I sat near the piano eating by myself.
I was angry at people. I won't deny that I even thought about the word 'hate'. I 'hated' people who have somehow or rather hurt me. I felt that I've been 'betrayed' by these people.

I felt as if all these while whatever I've been doing have all gone to waste. Useless. Meaningless. Self inflicted. When I mean all these while, I meant years. Years of persuasion, encouragement, pushing, enforcing... meaningless to these people. After all the hardwork I put in, the time I spent, the things I spent on... wasted. Nobody appreciated it. Worst, they turn a deaf ear. They won't listen, they won't budge, they don't care.

A moment of ungrace. How ironic that I just finished reading a book on grace and this opposite feeling just crept into my soul and spoke unpleasant words to me just awhile ago. My first test of grace. Even a child wouldn't want to come and talk to me. For that moment, I felt so alone, so by myself, and all I could turn to was my unread blog. I could throw all my feelings of 'hatred' in this blog
and nobody would dare say. Years and years of encouragement, all end up ignored.

I constantly cry out, "God, I need grace desperately although I don't feel like it. So many times, God, I feel like giving up... giving up my duty, my responsibility, giving up telling them, encouraging them... and it is as if I'm forcing them. It's tiring, saddening, frustrating and depressing to remind them each time.

What else, God, can I do to make them listen to me? Because of this, I've had made sacrifices on other things which are equally as important. Due to obedience, I did it. Due to the fact that I didn't want to give up on them, I did it. Because of You, God, I did it. Because of what I believe You can do, I did it. For their sake, I did it."

Each day, I've been taught to look at the world through 'grace-tinted lenses'. Not easy, but that is what God wants. That is and was how Jesus looked at the world when He was on earth.

Although I know they won't listen, I know that my effort won't go to waste. God has a purpose for me. I know He has. I know there is still hope for some of them. One day, they will know that it is for their own good. I know they will. I would be more than happy even if only one of them came back. I would.

Like my lecturer once said, "We cannot save everybody. We can only save those who save themselves."

Thursday, March 13, 2008

What grace has taught me

1. If you ask, how does a grace-full (full of grace) Christian look? The answer is a grace-full Christian is one who looks at the world through "grace-tinted lenses".

2. One lecturer in spirituality once said, "God in heaven holds each person by a string. When you sin, you cut the string. Then God ties it up again, making a knot - and thereby bringing you a little closer to him. Again and again your sins cut the string - and with each further knot God keeps grawing you closer and closer."

3. Hate the sin, not the sinner. But you ask, how could you hate what a man did and not hate the man? It occurred to me that there was one person I had been doing this all my life - namely myself. However much I dislike my own character or greed or selfishness, I went on loving myself. There had been the slightest difficulty about it. In fact the very reason why I hated the things was that I loved the person. Just because I loved myself, I was sorry to find that I was the sort of man who did those things.

4.The world thirsts for grace. When grace descends, the world falls silent before it.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Dreaming for a public holiday on Monday

For some, today is a day of mourning and sadness, but to others it is a day of rejoicing and victory.
I must tell you, I've never been so semangat-ed (hyped up) during elections period in the past 20 years of my life and I must admit, this year is one of the most anticipating and most 'kan-cheong' moments of my life.

For your information, I'm still recovering from the post-election results which have been circulating around thru' sms, news and the internet for the past 8 hours. Last night's ordain was like watching the World Cup football match finale where most people have their eyes glued on the tv or handphones in hand waiting for unofficial and official results directly from the counting centres. I would then wait in anticipation as results keep flooding in and would just shout with excitement upon hearing the opposition parties wining seats against the BN candidates. It is as if my favourite team in football has scored a goal each time an opposition party wins. To me, it was that kind of feeling.

Four years ago I remembered staying up late in the night with my family and our eyes glued on the tv screen, waiting in anticipation for BN to win. In fact, I wasn't anticipating for the results. I was more interested in the outcome of the result, whether the Monday after election would be declared as a public holiday. In the end, it was and it was due to the landslide winning of BN.

This time, I put my hopes on the same outcome of the result but not on the same results. Well, it would be quite impossible to demand for a public holiday from BN after their plight in the elections, wouldn't it?

All in all, the most important thing is that the government should take the results of the elections as a wake-up call and not sleep on it. It is time for a change. It is our turn to have a say!

Now, who cares whether Monday is a holiday?

I still I want it so badly....!! :p

Monday, March 03, 2008

Amazing tales from China

My parents just got back from China last night and boy, do they have amazing stories to tell...
Some of you must be thinking... "China.? Again...??" Well, yea. This is the second time in 6 months and the third for my mum. The last time was during our big homefellowship sorta retreat in 2004 which was the funnest (if there's such a word) trip ever and our very first (and only?) overseas trip together.

So, anyway, the main reason they went to China, this time to Shan Tou, GuangZhou, was to visit their long lost relatives. (Wow...!) Yea, long lost.... My dad's long lost cousin (dad's father's sister's chidren) and my mum's auntie (mum's father's sister). According to my mum, my mum's grandmother left her auntie in China cos she's one of the only daughters in the family and brought the younger daughter to Malaysia instead. So, she was left alone there in China, married at the age of 15, now with her family. Confused? Haha.

Arriving at the Teochew city, Swatow (yes I'm Teochew, pure some more ok...don't play play... and I'm no banana.. I know how to speak...just maybe not as good as my family..hehe), my parents were greated most warmly by their relatives there. They were sooooo happy to meet them. My dad's relatives even invited the other family members (a total of 5 tables in the restaurant) for lunch to welcome my parents. Amazing, isn't it, how warm can China people be... :) Btw, I've not finish my story-telling yet. Please bear with me. :)

According to my parents, (now this is the shocking part of the story) one of my dad's niece/nephew's children got married at the age of 18/19 as his/her wife was pregnant at the age of 17. So, basically, my dad's cousin (age 81) has become a great-grandfather and that makes my father a


I can't believe it!

Lol..does that mean... I'm...(wait a minute..nonono)... a...gggrrraaaanndauuntiiee??? HA?! You serious ar??! At the age of 20??! NO WAY! And I thought being an auntie was old enough... Grandauntie some more...urghhh... I'm starting to feel old now..

Well, as much as I have other stories to tell, I'm afraid I don't have the time now. Anyways, hope you enjoyed a little of what I heard from my parents from China. :)

Picture posts ahead! :p