Sunday, March 26, 2006

Abdul Rahman to be released!

Praise the Lord! We've been praying for Abdul Rahman this whole week, asking God to come and intervene, and today, according to CNN, Abdul will not be executed, but be released.

"The court dismissed today the case against Abdul Rahman for a lack of information and a lot of legal gaps in the case," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter. AP said the official has been closely involved with the matter.

"The decision about his release will be taken possibly tomorrow," AP quoted the official as saying. "They don't have to keep him in jail while the attorney general is looking into the case."


Praise God for His mercies!

In My Life - The Beatles

"In My Life" - Beatles

There are places I’ll remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I’ve loved them all

But of all these friends and lovers
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new
Though I know I’ll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I’ll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more

Though I know I’ll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I’ll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more
In my life I love you more


Friday, March 24, 2006

Another birthday!


Huey Ching,
As God
Prepares you for a
Purposeful and meaningful
Year ahead,

Be grateful to Him
In everything that you do.
Remember
That it is ONLY thru
Him that your
Desires are made complete,
And know that, God loves
You very much!

Happy sweet 16th birthday, or did I mention that already?... :P

Weee.....

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Pray for Abdul Rahman













CNN recently reports:

"Rahman, a father of two, was arrested and is on trial for rejecting Islam. The Afghan constitution, which is based on Sharia, or Islamic law, says that apostates can receive the death penalty."

May we be praying for brother Abdul Rahman, that God be strong in him even as he faces his enemies. May the love of Christ covers him, give him the grace to forgive, and the courage to run the race, fight the fight, and keep the faith...

May Vin's 21!

May Vin turns 21 today. Starting today May Vin is no longer a girl, at least, in the legal sense. And by becoming a woman, she now have special privilleges, like, voting for instance. In some countries, they now allow you to consume alcoholic beverages, though we know that May Vin dislikes beers anyway (don't you May Vin.. :P).


Well May Vin, may God bless you in all you do. Remember to keep Sydney neat and clean, and don't forget to send us some Hillsongs goodies (like the new United album 'United We Stand'... "hint hint"). Take care and have a wonderful birthday!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

"Behold, I make all things new"

In the book of revelations, Jesus gave John a vision of what heaven would be like. But before that, He showed what must happen in His second coming. At the end of the tribulations, and when Satan and his armies are finally defeated and thrown into hell, Jesus let John see the holy city, the 'New Jerusalem'. Jesus said, "Behold, I make all things new" (Rev 21:5).

This verse reminds me alot of Pastor Tom's words. Pastor Tom was my mentor during my uni days in Lincoln. One of the things he said often was 'God is in the process of making all things right'. Although I caught his drift then, I now understand better what this means...

I had an interesting experience this afternoon. While stopping by to park for lunch in front of this restaurant, I accidentally kissed the bumper of the car infront of me. To my dismay, there were people in there too. I quickly came out, examined their bumper and mine, saw no damage, apologized to the two passengers, and happily proceeded to order my lunch. However, things didn't go quite as I wanted. It turned out that when the driver of the car I 'tapped' came back, he was not quite happy about the 'crack' on the side of the bumper. Oh, it was a crack alright, and he then proceeded to put the blame on me. Long story short, I argued about how it was illogical, and how I was adamant that it was not my fault, and I wanted to take this to the police, etc etc... in the end, that 'tap' cost me 120 hard-earned mullahs. I ranted to my boss, who was there with me about these 'blood suckers' over lunch, and remained restless for the rest of the day.

I thought through the incident, trying to find closure for myself. To some extent, I was ashamed of my behavior. I wished I could have obeyed Jesus' command of 'turning the other cheek' or 'give him your cloak as well', instead of acting like a stubborn-headed person who wanted to prove a point. But the more I dwell into my behavior, what I realized was that it wasn't about the money that I've got to give up. My frustation was more towards the fact that the world's unfair, and that injustice was rampant, and I couldn't bear the thought of these injustice being taken out on people that I love and care about. I didn't even dare imagine what would happen if my mom was to be caught in that situation. I felt, victimized.

But as I begin to think more about God, Pastor Tom's words came back to me. Tom's assertion of 'God is in the process of making all things right' begin to make more sense now. I suddenly received the assurance that God is not blind to all these. He's aware, and better still, He's in control. Relief then came, and when I talked this thru with Angeline, she prayed for me and peace was restored in my heart. I'm not so much angry with the person who 'took me for a ride', and in fact, I'm glad I don't even remember how he looks like, or what his car registration number is anymore. In all these, I've learned something even greater. I saw my true colours today, and that led me to know how much more desperately I need Christ in my life. And I'm thankful for that. I'm also thankful for people like Angeline who reminds me of Christ's love which triumphs over all, even over paying for broken bumpers that I didn't break (or at least, might not have broken)...

Monday, March 20, 2006

Happy Burpday Emily!

16 years ago today, Mrs Chan burped and Emily Chan was born. Today opens a new chapter for Emily, as she realize that she can now legally get special permission to get married (but please don't, we still love you very much.. :P), or maybe get her motorbike license (which is also a bad idea, since we are trying to keep the accident rates in Malaysia down). Anyways Emily, you have yourself a blessed birthday, and remember that God loves you and has many special plans for you!

p/s. I still want my cake!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Blogger's Block

I'm currently experiencing some blogger's block, which explains why I haven't updated anything in over a week. Will return once I get my stuff done and take time to clear the block.

You guys and gals have a great week ahead of you! Stay blessed and remember to keep on praying.

:P

Friday, March 10, 2006

The Simpsons - with live actors!

What if TV hit series 'The Simpsons' gets reenacted by real life actors? Maybe it would look something like this...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=49IDp76kjPw

Watch closely and figure out how baby Maggie got on the couch... :P

p/s.. It's Friday!!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

5000 hits!

5000 hits.. yay!... and little did I realize that my blog is over one year old... wow... I guess time does really fly when you're having fun!

To all my faithful readers, thanks for reading, even when I know some entries can be (yawn) boring...

Anyway, have a great week! Anticipating for the next thousand hits to come by... :P

The Season of Lent

Check this out: http://www.kencollins.com/holy-04.htm

I'm pasting the article here for your convenience...

The Season of Lent


Theme:
Retreating Into the Wilderness with Jesus
Dates:
Lent is a forty-day period before Easter. It begins on Ash Wednesday. We skip Sundays when we count the forty days, because Sundays commemorate the Resurrection. Lent begins on 21 February 2007 and ends on 7 April 2007, which is the day before Easter.

In the Roman Catholic Church, Lent officially ends at sundown on 5 April (Holy Thursday), with the beginning of the mass of the Lord’s Supper.

Colors:
In most churches, the decorations are purple or blue, royal colors to prepare for the King. You can read more about color in worship
The East:
In Orthodox churches, this season is called the Great Lent. It begins on Clean Monday.
Special Days:
Ash Wednesday, 1 March 2006
The Annunciation, 25 March 2006

Lent is a season of soul-searching and repentance. It is a season for reflection and taking stock. Lent originated in the very earliest days of the Church as a preparatory time for Easter, when the faithful rededicated themselves and when converts were instructed in the faith and prepared for baptism. By observing the forty days of Lent, the individual Christian imitates Jesus’ withdrawal into the wilderness for forty days. All churches that have a continuous history extending before AD 1500 observe Lent. The ancient church that wrote, collected, canonized, and propagated the New Testament also observed Lent, believing it to be a commandment from the apostles. (See The Apostolic Constitutions, Book V, Section III.)

If your church does not observe Lent, you can find out why.

You can read about fasting, which is a spiritual discipline that does not involve starvation or dehydration. You can also read Honest to God for an explanation of what we accomplish by observing Lent.

You can find out about Lenten fasting during medieval times. The link even includes a very interesting recipe!

The Western Church

Because Sunday is the day of the Resurrection, we skip over Sundays when we calculate the length of Lent. Therefore, in the Western Church, Lent always begins on Ash Wednesday, the seventh Wednesday before Easter.

In many countries, the last day before Lent (called Mardi Gras, Shrove Tuesday, Carnival, or Fasching) has become a last fling before the solemnity of Lent. For centuries, it was customary to fast by abstaining from meat during Lent, which is why some people call the festival Carnival, which is Latin for farewell to meat.

The Eastern Church

The Eastern Church does not skip over Sundays when calculating the length of the Great Lent. Therefore, the Great Lent always begins on Clean Monday, the seventh Monday before Easter, and ends on the Friday before Palm Sunday—using of course the eastern date for Easter. The Lenten fast is relaxed on the weekends in honor of the Sabbath (Saturday) and the Resurrection (Sunday). The Great Lent is followed by Lazarus Saturday and Palm Sunday, which are feast days, then the Lenten fast resumes on Monday of Holy Week. Technically, in the Eastern Church, Holy Week is a separate season from the Great Lent.

Special Days

The purpose of the liturgical calendar is to relive the major events in Jesus’ life in real time, which is why Lent is forty days long. If Jesus were born on 25 December, then His conception—thus also His incarnation—would have been nine months earlier, on about 25 March. That is when the angel Gabriel would have announced Jesus’ birth to Mary. Thus 25 March is known in the historic church as The Annunciation.

Roughly speaking, the western Church consists of Protestants, Catholics, and Anglicans. The eastern Church consists of the Eastern Orthodox churches, the Oriental Orthodox churches, and the eastern-rite churches affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church.

You can download a printable version of this page to use as a hand-out or a bulletin insert.

Countdown...

I have 249 days or 8 months and 4 days excluding the end date

Or:
  • 35 weeks (rounded down)
  • 5,976 hours
  • 358,560 minutes
  • 21,513,600 seconds ...
...more!

I can't wait! But I must.... :P

Monday, March 06, 2006

Secret Garden

Bruce Springsteen's song - 'Secret Garden' tells the condition that not lies just in a woman's heart, but that of every human's soul. For those who are unfamiliar with the song, it goes like this:

She'll let you in her house
If you come knockin' late at night
She'll let you in her mouth
If the words you say are right
If you pay the price
She'll let you deep inside
But there's a secret garden she hides

She'll let you in her car
To go drivin' round
She'll let you into the parts of herself
That'll bring you down
She'll let you in her heart
If you got a hammer and a vise
But into her secret garden, don't think twice

You've gone a million miles
How far'd you get
To that place where you can't remember
And you can't forget

She'll lead you down a path
There'll be tenderness in the air
She'll let you come just far enough
So you know she's really there
She'll look at you and smile
And her eyes will say
She's got a secret garden
Where everything you want
Where everything you need
Will always stay
A million miles away

I believe that in everyone lies their own secret garden in their hearts. This secret garden holds our deepest and darkest secrets and desires, which we will guard all cost. We find it difficult to share it with even our closest friends or confidant. Most of the time, it is because of fear, the fear of rejection; other times, maybe we feel that no one could understand, comprehend, or appreciate it. So, we carry on in life, hiding this secret garden from everyone. In truth, we long to share it with someone, but yet we refrain because of fear.

Our secret garden can contain many different things. For some, it could be their sins - past and present, bad experiences and struggles, where shame is their motive for hiding it. It also can contain dreams and desires, some so bizzare or out-of-this-world, and thus we hide it because we fear others would belittle it. Some of us keep our 'secret love', usually a love for someone else in our secret garden because we feel that the love is forbidden (the person is attached/married to someone else) and we fear that we will be frowned upon or rejected if word gets out. Maybe we keep it secret because we want to protect the other person's heart, but yet, in the end, we feel left out and lonely. We could also be unaware of this secret garden altogether, which could be why sometimes we express or feel some unexplained emotions.

In Psalm 139, David describe his own secret garden. In verse 1, he begins: "O Lord, you have searched me and you know me." and goes on describing in detail how God is omniscient; where nothing is hidden from Him, even our secret garden. And thru Christ Jesus, God in knowing all that is within us, has chosen to not condemn us, but instead given us the Spirit of life. To me, this is the greatest news ever, because we can bring our weaknesses, joys, deepest secrets and desires, struggles, dreams and aspirations to God, and need not to feel ashamed or belittled.

Being Christians these days, it's often easy for us to 'play church'. We can attend church week after week, without growing, nor changing for the better. This however, is not God wants, because He desires that we die to ourselves everyday, and to arise with Him in our Spirits. And it doesn't matter what are struggles are because Christ, whom the bible describes as one that is familiar with our suffering and struggles, has made it possible for us to to become overcomers.

Isn't it great that we can come to God and share with Him our secret garden? And more than that, God is more than happy to be invited into it. No matter how our garden may look like, whether it's unkept, dead or may it even be blooming with flowers, God will still love us and in time, with us trusting Him more and more by surrendering ourselves to Him, He will transform that secret garden of ours into something that's so beautiful, that words will fail to describe it.

I guess that if we can't let God in to secret garden, it'll probably be harder to let anyone else in. God has made it easy for us to talk to Him thru prayer. In Revelations 3:20, Jesus said "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." May we welcome Him in today.