Monday tiredness

Last weekend was very busy – yet very rewarding. YF had it’s annual thanksgiving (which I believe was a tradition started by some Americans who had joined YF for a short time) on Saturday night…it was a very emotional night for a few people, including myself.

The emotions were very draining, that by the end of the night I crashed into bed with a thud and fell soundly asleep – but the early start the next morning was not good. I carried over my tiredness from the night before all throughout the day. Hopes of working on a sermon that evening were dashed by a three hour nap :P

This morning I didn’t want to crawl out of bed – though I felt I had reasonable sleep last night. This coming week I pray for continual inner renewal as I continue to work on this sermon. One thing I do note – reading through Hebrews has encouraged me greatly :)

The wonder of Children

The other night whilst babysitting kids I had to resort to sitting them in front of the idiotbox. There wasn’t much else I could do at such short notice – and it was mostly for a two hour block anyway.

But whilst we were watching TV I noticed how transfixed the kids were. In one part of the movie (Jimmy Neutron) the kids actually ‘oohed’ and ‘ahhd’ which really made me smile.

It brought to mind what Ravi Zacharias once said (and how Matthew elegantly puts it as well) about wonder. He recounted a story of how he would tell the same story to his three children – aged 6, 4, and 2 respectively. To his 6 year old child he would tell the story as follows:

Once there was a little boy named Tommy. Tommy walked up to his closet door and then Tommy opened the door…and then a giant dragon jumped out! At which point his 6 year old child’s eyes would light up!

To his 4 year old he would tell the story would follow as such:

Once there was a little boy named Tommy. Tommy walked up to his closet door…and then Tommy opened the door… at which point his 4 year old child’s eyes would light up!

To his 2 year old he would tell the story as follows:

Once there was a little boy named Tommy. Tommy walked up to his closet door… at which point his child’s eyes would light up!

The point? For his 6 year old child, it took a dragon to excite her. For his 4 year old, it only took opening the door for his eyes to light up. For his 2 year old, merely walking to the door is enough to light his eyes up…

The older we get the more it takes to fill our hearts with wonder…and only God is big enough to fill it.

Driving Personality

I think you can tell a lot about a person by their driving. And add to that – I think you can also tell a lot about a persons spiritual life from their driving habits.

I add that last point because lately I’ve been watching various people drive, and I’ve noticed that the attitude they approach to their driving tends to reflect their attitude to life – and I guess in some ways (though there will always be exceptions) also reflects how their walk with Christ is going.

But then again, maybe this is only true for the people I have sitten in cars with :P

Cirque Du Soleil

Quidam. Breathtaking… that’s really all I can describe it as.

Tonight Shte1 and I celebrated 12 months (and 5 days :P) together. I took her to Bretts Wharf for dinner and then on to the Grand Chapiteau for the evening’s entertainment :)

Dinner was very nice – though I can never quite get use to the slightly small servings and the large prices. I’m so use to value for money! Oh well, comes with being Asian I guess :P

Walking to the Grand Chapiteau was also a bit of a task – I took a wrong turn and though Shte1 and I had a very nice walk along side the river, we had to back track because we ended up in a dead end – my bad :P

But I didn’t expect to watch such a fantastic show. As the advertisements suggest – humans really are fascinating creatures.

Now if I could only contort my body in those ways…

A train delayed…and a Da Vinci Code

This morning was going well enough until I hit a delay on the train. Apparantly a truck had gone through the Sherwood rail crossing and pulled down some of the lines. I was at Milton when this accident occurred – and was there for about 20 minutes.

Whilst the train was at rest I was reading ‘The Goldsworthy Trilogy’ when person sitting infront of me started to sing softly to her vietnamese song she was listening to on her walkman. It sounded pretty funny to the people immediately sitting near her – had she known that she was singing I’m sure the embarrasment would have been worse :P

But then I noticed that the lady sitting to my left was reading Dan Brown’s ‘The Da Vinci Code’. I couldn’t see the cover, but the page font was big enough to read… so I read a little and (if my memory serves me well) saw this, “‘Upon this rock I shall build my church’ was authority Jesus gave to Peter as the first apostle.”

I knew then that this lady was reading ‘The Da Vinci Code’. The book reminded me of the truth of what Paul wrote to Timothy – people have itchy ears and will listen to anyone who says anything to suit their own desires. I’m not sure what that lady believes in, but I pray for her nonetheless.

Christianity Today has some nice articles on how we should treat the Da Vinci Code.

To our dear departed friend…

Alfie was always full of life and energy. At times his energy, for such a compact little dog, dwarfed my own :P Most didn’t know Alfie well, but to the few who did good memories shall remain.

Is there eternal rest for animals? I don’t know. What strikes us more during this time is remembering that death is the result of sin in this world… but through Christ, we are given new life. At some point Christ’s return will also mean the end to sin…and death.

For now, we are reminded of Paul’s words in Romans… and also remember that there is more to this life than living and dying

Impatience

I was a little late getting out of the house this morning, so the morning traffic was backed up more than usual.

Then as our car was approaching the Oxley Roundabout, I noticed a grey Ford Falcon ahead of us wanting to change lanes into the busy/backed up right hand lane. The Falcon signalled correctly, waited patiently for an opening and slowly crept towards the right hand lane – all the things I think I would have done.

But a black Mitsubishi Lancer was just behind the Falcon and completely cut it off – sped up quickly enough to fill in the opening the Falcon looked like it was going to take. The Falcon swerved off, narrowly missing the two cars… sped ahead a little bit, did the same thing and a different car let him in.

This event reminded me of one thing – even after 2000 years, the Bible’s description of humanity (sinful and in a fallen world with all the effects of selfishness and pride) is still very true…and very obvious. We are all in need of the grace and mercy of God given to us through Christ.

What are words…?

Early in my evangelism I encountered this question, which at the time I don’t think I answered to well… “Why is taking the Lord’s name in vain a sin? Words are just words…”

At the time I didn’t really understand. But lately I have come to understand the power of words.

Words have the power to build up, to encourage and to bring and share love. Words have the power to give life.

Words can also be used to tear down, to discourage, to belittle. Words have the power to take life.

God’s Gospel comes to us through words. Christ is The Word.

When we take the Lord’s name in vain, we forget the simple message given to us in Acts 4:12. We throw this message out the window as if it is old news, when it is nothing less than the power for our salvation.

But on a more personal level, I’ve learnt tonight that words can cut deeply than we first suspect. I’ve thought myself eloquent with words before, but I know from experience that my words have also cut deeply. To strive towards humility in both attitude and speech is indeed a long and daunting process.

Rain…and more rain

There has been lots and lots of rain recently. Minor flooding has occured around the area – I even heard that Warrigal Road was closed for a good part of Sunday because of the flash flooding.

This afternoon on the train I was looking out the window at all the rain that was pouring down and commented to a man sitting opposite to me that there was so much of it! He then replied something to the effect that whilst there was lots of rain, we did need it.

And that reminded me of something I read briefly on the MatthiasMedia website under the ‘Couldn’t Help But Notice’ column. A sometimes cynical and slightly sarcastic column, but at other times quite insightful.

This little ‘notice’ I read concerned the drought that Queensland was experiencing during the winter. It made the comment that drought was a curse that God put on the land when the people had forgotten them.

What an interesting thought. Maybe we can share that with our friends the next time we think about the drought…or the ‘timely’ rain.

Angels wish…

Every now and then a song comes along which really makes me reflect deeply. This is one such song…

Angels Wish (Steven Curtis Chapman, from All Things New LP)

Was God smiling

When He spoke the words

That made the world

And did he cry about the flood

And what does God’s voice sound like

When He sings, when He’s angry

These are just a few things

That the angels have on me

Chorus:

Well, I can’t fly

At least not yet

I’ve got no halo on my head

And I can’t even start to picture Heaven’s beauty

But I’ve been shown the Savior’s love

The grace of God has raised me up

To show me things the angels long to look into

And I know things

The angels only wish they knew

I have seen the dark and desperate place

Where sin will take you

I’ve felt loneliness and shame

And I have watched the blinding light of grace

Come breaking through with a sweetness

Only tasted by the forgiven and redeemed

(repeat chorus)

And someday I’ll sit down with my angel friends

Up in Heaven

They’ll tell me about creation

And I’ll tell them a story of grace

(repeat chorus)