SENT2018 Reflections (IG Ver.)

SENT 2018 was truly a roller-coaster ride but here are several things that I’m reminded of and have learnt:

1) it matters not what man plans but what God intends.

– upon reflection I realised I was held back with many doubts about my nomination into the committee as an ops head. Did these people really know me well enough to think that I would have this skill set? It seemed like a back-up plan. Maybe they really didn’t have anyone else already so they asked me? I unknowingly held onto these doubts and thoughts for so long that my attitude was so trashy lol (but that’s for another point). I forgot that it was a privilege alone to take part in God’s plan and he doesn’t even need me as a backup to do whatever he wants to do with his people. 2nd/3rd/4th/nth choice I was didn’t matter. God uses all of us simply as we come and simply as we avail ourselves. There is no competition as is in the human world. There is no fight to prove myself to anyone, even God, for I am already justified by grace through faith in Christ (lol God knows we be doomed if we tried to prove ourselves to him haha).

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2) hands that are willing to serve and a heart that is subject to the interest of God

– in the midst of assignments to be submitted and finals to be taken, I was incredibly selfish in my attitude, forgetting the initial goal of serving the Lord, His church and my family. I was reluctant to take on additional responsibilities that came along and the stuff I had to do because “it wasn’t what I signed up for” and the job description caused me a lot of headaches on what I was supposed to do lol. In this period it was really stretching and when the ugly side of me began to show as well. my attitude and heart towards service was being challenged and with my lips I expressed it needed to change but it was difficult to really sit, reflect and repent. My heart was still indignant. By God’s grace, Tammy came along and her spirit of excellence and concurrent consideration for people among other stellar things modelled and sparked something in me. It wasn’t even a conscious decision on my part I think. I was just pulled into such an orbit and in this way God answered my weak prayers…

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3) everyone a precious child of God and literal brothers and sisters I will see for eternity

– as part of my general lethargy, forgotten aim to contribute to the Church and short-sightedness on community, I invested little energy into the weekly meetings and sharing sessions I had with the comm. Granted, it all coincided with a season where I felt a need to retreat and to share less. However, I was also emotionally detached and disinterested in their lives, doing little to build up this community and simply waiting for the moment I could leave and get back to all the other things that needed to be done. I saw little practical value in these sharings, feeling that people have cells for that and we’d never be as close anyway. What a joke I am hahahaha.. I did not bear the fruits of the spirit. I was not loving, joyful, forbearing, kind, faithful nor gentle. I forgot that these people are precious children of God and literal brothers and sisters in my eternal community. Forgot that I too am called to be a disciple-maker, an iron to sharpen iron and to be sharpened by others.

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In the end, I’m so thankful for this experience and grateful for things to come around and the new friends I’ve made. I feel much more connected to the church and that’s kinda important because otherwise it increasingly seems like a building and not the body of Christ. Recently, I’ve been thinking really granular when it comes to the Church, and while it’s still really important for each part to play their part lol, it’s still important to pay attention to the macro-level seeing as i am not just a part of my cell but also indeed, a part of Riverlife Church (which itself is within an even larger context of Singapore, so on and so forth..)

ok lol the end.

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SENT2018 Reflections (IG Ver.)

Romans 8:5-11: i am set free into life and peace

For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on s the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on t the things of the Spirit. For to set u the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is v hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; w indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact x the Spirit of God dwells in you. y Anyone who does not have z the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of a him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus4 from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies b through his Spirit who dwells in you.

Romans 8:5-11: i am set free into life and peace

Finer points: sitting in our suffering

God sits with us in our suffering. Am I looking away too like the Jews because I was looking for a God to remove my suffering?

God’s greatest loss would become his greatest gain in us, broken us. Jesus chose our story of brokenness so we can choose his of righteousness.

We stand in a reality where God has paid the price for us and our mess. Where he meets us and shares in our suffering.

Finer points: sitting in our suffering

Today I dreamt that as a family we were arranging salt crystals. Initially the dream wasn’t about family. It started out with trying to find ghost footprints so we started sprinkling salt on the floor but slowly mom joined and it was so much fun. I sprinkled it from its bottle and everyone slowly started arranged it in lines. Until there was a moment where I sprinkled it ahead of our line, ahead of our progress. And ahma was there too, arranging it in her good manner. It was so normal. I didn’t notice the difference in the beginning even. I was in between mum and ahma. So I got up and went ahead down the line further, sprinkling more salt. And I had the thought that I wanted to take a photo of this. I had to. Mum even addressed ahma casually, giving her instructions on how to arrange the crystals. It was like we hadn’t realised the dream which realised ahma in front of us. It was a reality from the past that kept being real to us even after it had already been halted in its tracks. I started to take pictures, with the knowledge that ahma had indeed passed on but yet she was here in this moment. How could I not try to remember, try to capture another moment with her, knowing she was gone? And as I looked at the screen it was black and white, almost to indicate to me the picture I was seeing and capturing was not real. But yet it was; a timeline of the past that had somehow merged with ours again for that short moment. When I clicked to capture, I would see both the B&W version and the colored version which showed the empty space. I started to tear as I continued to take pictures. It seemed then that Dad and Mum finally realised the same impossible reality that ahma wasn’t there anymore. But yet she somehow was to all of us while we were performing some mindless menial task. It was in the normal grind of life that her presence was felt. Where her gentle words, kind touch and support continued to linger even after her body was no more. With such an experience you just know, what an amazing person she was. And I now have a better sense of the loss mum felt in her life when ahma had stopped breathing. To be missing that gigantic figure whom you knew would always be there to help with whatever you needed. Yet wouldn’t get in the way so as to hinder your development or to infringe on your will. What an art. What a beauty. I couldn’t help it, I woke up in tears. Not a right ol sob but just an acknowledgement of reality.. And yet the dream within the dream has taught me how to live better. And as I’m writing this I wonder how to make clear the distinction yet convey the very blurry lines…

Finer points: his sovereignty and my will 

The power of God engages itself beneath or behind and within our will, not in place of our will.

The evidence of God’s power in our lives is not the absence of our willing but the strength of our willing.

Part of the whole process of walking worthy of God’s call is the active engagement of our will in resolving to do righteousness. 

From: God Works Through Good Resolves #SolidJoys http://solidjoys.desiringgod.org/en/devotionals/god-works-through-good-resolves

Finer points: his sovereignty and my will 

Finer points: will

God has already laid his will out for us in his word. So perhaps instead of simply asking what his will is for us, we can ask for wisdom to act according to God’s will. 

In order then to become wise we need to read and meditate on God’s word and ask for the spirit to illuminate our hearts. 

Finer points: will

Q&A bits 

The normal and enough way that will allow you to live the Christian life is through his word. 

The normal Christian experience is that you know God through his words! Enough to know it is true and enough.

You are praying for your worldview to be changed and not for the Bible to be more clear.Pray and then Work. The psalmist prays and then works by meditating, memorising, teaches, speaks, lives, etc. He worked very hard 

Q&A bits