Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Link: Killed All the Day Long

Read this thought-provoking post. Makes you wonder how you will respond in times of religious persecution.

Dan Edelen writes, "We love this life too much because it’s the only thing that seems real to us." How true it is. We are still very used to live by sight, and not by faith. Worse still, we are satisfied to live that way.


Monday, April 20, 2009

The Most Dangerous Thing

What is the most dangerous thing for a driver to do when he is driving?

What is your answer?


Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Lizard and the Ant

If you see a big, fat lizard waiting silently, with its eyes fixated at a tiny ant which is moving obliviously towards the lizard, what will you do?

You will...

A. Ignore the imminent disaster. Life goes on with or without the ant around.

B. Scare the lizard away, knowing that this can only be a temporary solution as the ant might be eaten by the lizard the next time you are not around.

C. Kill the ant. It is better for the ant to die an instant death than to be tortured in the mouth of the lizard till death.

D. Turn yourself into a tiny ant and beg the lizard to eat you and let go of that ant forever.

"Hey, which fool will choose D? "

Oops, Jesus did.

Note: Illustration has its limitation.


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Further Thoughts on "Beautifully Imperfect"

How do we handle another person's imperfection?

We try to make minimal contact with that person through avoidance, lest his imperfection causes annoyance, irritation and eventually an outburst of anger in us. That will be ugly and unbecoming of us in the eyes of others.

What if we cannot avoid the person? Too bad, we just do our best to tolerate and swallow the pain and irritation as a result of his imperfection. We see this as God's challenge for us to master the art of self-control.

What if we try to see his imperfection as a reminder of our own imperfection?

What if we try to see his imperfection as something that makes him uniquely him?

What if we try to see his imperfection as something that brings flavour and colour to our otherwise black-and-white lives?

We might be annoyed by a person's imperfection when he is alive, but it is also his beautiful imperfection that will make an irremovable mark in our hearts and memories when he is no longer with us. By then, his imperfection will be the only sweet thing we can cling on to tightly.

Perhaps it is time to look at the imperfection of others from a different perspective.


Video: Beautifully Imperfect

I first saw this ad on Channel 5 (Singapore) on Maundy Thursday while preparing for the Stations of the Cross together with my cell group members. I was very touched by the words that were being said. Today, I came across the video clip on Charles' blog and watched it again. It never fails to touch my heart every time I watch the ad.

I felt very touched by her last words, "So to my beautiful children, I hope one day, you too find yourselves life partners who are as beautifully imperfect as your father was to me."

If only we were able to look at our neighbour as someone who is truly beautifully imperfect...as we are - beautiful because we were all created by God in his beautiful Image, imperfect because we are still "on the way" to perfection - then maybe, just maybe, the commandments of Christ, "Love your neighbour as yourself" and "If you hold anything against anyone, forgive him" might be a little bit easier to follow.

Grace and forgiveness are much needed in this hurting world. Let us learn to offer.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Via Dolorosa - Sandi Patty

One of my favourites. One of the videos we played during Stations of the Cross as well. Painfully sweet.

Good Friday Service at Hebron

Blessed are you who still remembers this blog.

After being a Christian shepherd (OK, I mean "pastor") for few months now, I begin to scratch my head in puzzlement and amazement at how some pastors are able to blog so frequently amidst their hectic schedule, one of them would have to be Sivin Kit. Perhaps I should suggest to him to conduct a course called "The Complete Pastor's Guide to Time-Saving Blogging." Perhaps... :)

Good Friday Service:
The main feature of this year's Good Friday service at our church (Hebron Presbyterian Church) was the Stations of the Cross. After twice experiencing this tradition in my theological seminary, I suggested to the church that we should embrace this tradition for this year's Good Friday service to make it a meaningful and meditative service. After getting the green light, I chose ten stations (modified from the traditional fourteen stations) and assigned a station to each youth/young adult cell group to work on it.

After two weeks of hard work (hmm...to be more exact, many groups started doing it few days before Good Friday), we successfully set up the ten stations on that night itself right before the service. In fact, I was very impressed by the creativity and hard work that the youths and young adults put in (although this was our first time) that I am compelled to post some pictures here for your view:
Station 1 - Jesus praying at Gethsemane
As you kneel at the designated spot, pondering upon the possible thoughts on Jesus' mind, you feel the intense struggle that he felt as he awaits betrayal, humiliation, suffering and death.

Station 2 - The Betrayal of Judas
As you picture the scenario of Judas - one of the Twelve who Jesus had been patiently and faithfully guiding - betraying Jesus, you ponder upon those moments in life when you denied Jesus or felt ashamed and afraid to introduce Jesus to your friends. Are you Judas?

Station 3 - The Arrest of Jesus
Looking at the Lamb who was God himself being willingly arrested by the men that he had created, you feel the depth of his love for you.

Station 4 - The Scourging
The blood that flowed out from the deep wounds and shredded flesh as a result of the scourging was supposed to be yours, not his.

Station 5 - Humiliation of Jesus: Crowning of thorns,
hitting on the head with a staff and spitting on him

Watch the reenactment of the humiliation of Jesus by the sinful, fallen human beings that he had created and feel the love of God for you.

Station 6 - Jesus carried the Cross
Carry the heavy, rough wood and walk along Via Dolorosa, accompanied by the jeers and insults of the crowd that adored him just a week ago.

Station 7 - Jesus nailed on the Cross
Confess or write your sins on the Confession Card, sign on it and nail it on the Cross, telling the Lord that you want to walk the path of holiness and no longer want to live under the slavery of sin.

Station 8 - Jesus died on the Cross
"It is finished," said Jesus. After much torment and suffering, Jesus finally accomplished his mission of redemption for the human race. How great is his love for us!

Experience the miracles that took place at the moment of Jesus' death: darkness over the whole land, the earthquake, the resurrection of the dead and the temple curtain torn in two. Surely, Jesus is the Son of God, as proclaimed by the centurion guarding Jesus.

Station 9 - Jesus laid in the tomb
Thank God, although the dead body of Jesus was laid in the tomb, the promise of his resurrection was about to be fulfilled!

Station 10 - Notes to Jesus
After going through the nine station, write a short letter to Jesus thanking him for what he has done for you.

Every one experienced an amazing Good Friday night, as God used the stations to minister to the 'pilgrims'. Several observations of this tradition:

1. It is a powerful platform for the sharing of Gospel to our friends.
Some friends joined our service on that night. Those who had invited them had a wonderful opportunity to explain the Passion of Christ to them as they journeyed from station to station. Through the creative drama, objects and pictures, surely the experience would have left an indelible mark in their hearts. The seeds of the Gospel have been sowed in their hearts on that night.

2. It is a powerful platform for the parents to explain the Passion of Christ to their children.
Just as God appointed special feasts during the time of the Israelites to ensure that the parents will explain to their children what the Lord had done for them in the past; on that Good Friday night, parents had the opportunity to explain in simple terms to their young children of the Passion of Christ through the eye-catching pictures and objects. They children were very attentive to the parents' explanation, and some kept on asking questions until the parents did not know how to answer them anymore... :)

3. It serves as a powerful reminder to us - forgetful Christians.
Another reason why God appointed special feasts was because of the forgetfulness of man. It is so easy for us to forget the love of God and the cost he had to pay in order to bring us back into his family. Thus, such a tradition with visual and audio aid serves as a powerful reminder to us of his love for us. Therefore, it is important for us to observe these special occasions of the Christian calender to remind ourselves on a regular basis on the love of God for us.

That's all for now. Hmm... Still very time-consuming (blogging) but I seem to be enjoying it...again.


Still Here...

Soon, really.