Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Extent of Love

I received a thank you card today. The card made me smile not because of the card but because of the thought and the person behind the card. This person is a lovely person to do anything for, not just because the person always expresses gratitude, but because of who the person is.

It made me think about the things we do for people. To what extent would we go for somebody?

It's pretty easy to imagine jumping into a fire to save someone we love. Running to a car wreck to pull someone out. I know of the Sg. Chilling incident where youths jumped in to rescue one of the fathers who was swept away by the river, and five of them, including the father, perished.

But what if it was someone whom you had good reason to hate? Someone who had always been against you for some reason?

I was reading the autobiography of Phoolan Devi whose uncle stole property from her father so that they lived in terrible poverty. Who would beat her mother with a stick whilst her mother cowered, sent people to batter and rape Phoolan, and whose son later on went on to steal the only thing of value left to the family.

I read of another lady in South Africa whose child was taken away and murdered. Later on they took her husband and tortured him. Finally she was dragged to see her husband lying in pain burnt alive.

What if it was someone like that?

What if someone like that was caught dealing drugs, for instance? We all know the penalty in our country - death by hanging. At the very least, the rotan (cane).

What would we do? Would the bitterness and anger that we have at the person who hurt our mother, burnt our father and did his best to destroy us feel a sense of vindication and cold joy at the thought of him receiving his just rewards?

Or would we offer to stand in his place? Would we say "Set him free. I'll take the punishment." and accept the whips from the rotan or the rope around our necks knowing that all the time, the person who hurt you and your family was going off scot-free to enjoy life and that life abundantly?

What if he wasn't grateful? What if he sneered at you and told you what a fool you were and spat at you as you made your way to the punishment room? And you knew, you knew that at any moment you could halt all this and put him back into the place that you had rescued him from with just one word?

Crazy isn't it? But that's what my Jesus did.

He took my place and all of our places, even yours, at the cross. He endured beatings, heat, slappings by the very ones He came to save, was spat on, jeered at when He fell, and yet to the very last He said, "Father, forgive them."

Isn't it incredible to know how much He loves you and me?

Youtube

What do YOU think of Youtube?

Do you think it is it a right thing to use if we upload artists' work onto Youtube?

I was concerned about copyright when I saw that the people who uploaded music videos onto Youtube very often were not the artists' or the record companies themselves.

We tend to download their videos from Youtube onto our blogs.

Should we? What's your opinion?

Protests


I'm proud of this girl. It is not just that she protected the Olympic torch flame and kept smiling throughout the ordeal.

It is because she chose to say, "Most French people are very friendly" and refused to boycott French goods.

I salute this girl: Jin Jing.

Her remarks made her 'unpopular' amongst those who just a short moment ago hailed her as a hero.

Not so long ago, we had our own 'boycott'. We as a nation decided to emphasize that certain goods came from a certain country. Said certain country had offended some of us and we decided to show our displeasure by boycotting the goods of that nation.

Never mind that said nation's entrepeuneurs had already threatened to sue the one person who had done the deed that had set a particular group of people up in arms.

Never mind that said nation's government had apologized repeatedly to the world at large and emphasized that it did not agree with the one person's actions.

No, we must punish the entire nation by boycotting all their goods! That would teach them a lesson!

What a circus that was with red circles being put on certain goods to identify them as coming from said nation, and full-page advertisements taken out by companies whose parent company were in said nation pleading for understanding that 'we are really very Malaysian indeed and we think action A done by person B in the home country of our parent company is per-fect-ly DES-PI-CABLE!'

Listen, I do NOT condone the performance of a deed that in all good conscience serves no good purpose except to offend a particular people group. But neither do I condone punishing a country for the deeds of one of its people!

We teach children 'forgive and forget', 'be the bigger person' and 'just ignore them'. Why can't we do the same?

Monday, April 21, 2008

You

You
Make me smile
Sometimes you even make me laugh

I enjoy your MSN's
I like the way you always find a joke in everything
I admire and respect the way you stand up for our God

Don't get me wrong
I'm clear that you are and always will remain
A friend

But I want to say
Your friendship has challenged me
To a deeper relationship with God

Your probing questions
Make me think more deeply to make sure
I fully understand the subject we discuss

Your jokes and sense of humour have taught me
That being funny doesn't mean losing your dignity
In fact, it makes people respect you

Thanks for the insights
Into how you think and feel
I appreciate your openness

I've seen you live out
The obedience you preach
Thank you for mirroring the 'real' Christian life

Keep going strong, Man of God

(P.S. No, this blog is not dedicated to the person I wrote about in my previous blog. It's someone else :> )

Love languages

I found it interesting last week when I told someone "You know I love you" (teasingly, more than anything :> We're friends).

He jokingly replied, "You lie!"

And I was like, "Oi! I really do love you!" (with pretend sniffles thrown in!)

Whereupon he said, "Ya, I know. I can see when you comment on my blog."

I found that really interesting because, yeap, as a friend, I really love this guy. He is a rare jewel - a real man of God.

And it made me think of the 5 love languages of people.

Here is the link for the test:-http://www.fivelovelanguages.com/30sec.html#love

Basically the question that the test is trying to answer is, "How do you perceive you are loved?"

There are 5 different ways we 'feel' loved, and depending on who we are personality wise, the ways we feel loved are different.

These are through:-

1) Words of affirmation
2) Quality time
3) Receiving gifts
4) Acts of service
5) Physical touch

Word of affirmation can be compliments, encouragement etc.

Quality time is one of those 'REALLY listening, REALLY being there' things.

Gifts we all understand.

Acts of service can be little chores to help out.

Physical touch is probably the least 'Asian' way to show love - hugs, kisses etc.

How do YOU feel loved?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Find Us Faithful

So touched when Pst Bee Leng dedicated this song to me in her blog.

I have felt the call stronger than ever to rise up during this time.

Steve Green: Find Us Faithful
We're pilgrims on the journey
Of the narrow road
And those who've gone before us line the way
Cheering on the faithful, encouraging the weary
Their lives a stirring testament to God's sustaining grace

Surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses
Let us run the race not only for the prize
But as those who've gone before us
Let us leave to those behind us
The heritage of faithfulness passed on through godly lives

CHORUS:
Oh may all who come behind us find us faithful
May the fire of our devotion light their way
May the footprints that we leave
Lead them to believe
And the lives we live inspire them to obey
Oh may all who come behind us find us faithful

After all our hopes and dreams have come and gone
And our children sift through all we've left behind
May the clues that they discover and the memories they uncover
Become the light that leads them to the road we each must find