Archive for March, 2005

For those of you who have kept up with me during these few months, you’ll know that the VCF musical is over. I won’t say “finally over” coz i really wasn’t looking forward to it ending – such were the good times i had in there. This entry isn’t really about the musical per se, but what it has caused me to reflect on.

In the process of the musical, and the time in which it spanned in my life, many things have been taught.

Like Mia, i fall into the trap of looking for satisfaction with my grades.

Like Ethan, i fall into the trap of trying to do things on my own.

Like Miles, i continually search for love without finding it’s Creator.

Like Sian Liang, i become prey to slack-ness and avoid doing work as much as possible.

Like Leah…um….um…ok i can’t think of anything in similar at this point of time – she’s a bit too far off from my own personal character, except for the emotional bit. =)

But as all this draws to a close, there comes a sense of emptiness…as Paul Seah shared, possibly from the extensive energy and emotions put in to the musical, and the sudden freeing of time. At the same time, i feel that that’s not all there is to it. Have i left God out of the equation of all these? I feel no pride when people come up to me and tell me i sang/danced well – what i want to know is did it touch them? Do they hear our message? Is God pleased with my sacrifice?

So many questions linger in my head. So many still left unanswered. For the past two weeks leading up i’ve cried out to God for the answers at night. I want to know. I need to know. And all He asks is that i trust Him. Vincent shared that if we know everything, there’s no need for faith. Yet i’m sure those of you in the Walk with me know that it’s not easy – “not easy” is an understatement, “extremely difficult” would be more accurate though not quite there as well. Some have called it “blind faith”, others “confidence”…whatever you call it, it’s still trusting God.

When Jude died in the musical, it brought the other characters to think about the meaning of life. Mia woke up from her paper dreams. Miles realised that he’s lacking something. Ethan gained the courage to fall. Yet in Jude’s death another character was brought into the scene – The Unseen One. Without Jude’s death the others will not have seen things that they did.

Like Jude, i must learn to die to let God take His place in my life – there cannot be both myself and God in control.

God H.I.P.!

Been lamenting over situations of things recently…fears of what will be, troubles of what the future holds…How the musical will turn out, and the responses, whether we’ll miss a step dancing or a note singing…

But i was reminded once again by one of my two bestest buddys that God’s HIP – God Has It Planned!

You know what? It really doesn’t matter where you are now. Who you are. What you’re facing. What you will face. Coz God has it all planned out.

To the person facing familial problems – God has it planned.

To the one struggling with studies – God has it planned.

To one who feels so dumb for what he has done – God has it planned.

Of course this is not a call to sloth and sit back and not do anything. You still have to do your best. But after you’ve done that (and make sure you have for the King of kings deserves no less), then relax about the outcome, for God has it planned.

After hearing that, i went to play the piano for a short while…and it’s been a long time since the notes came out so readily. It’s been so long since the sounds made music, that the melody carried a soul. I knew, in the midst of all my life, that God had it all planned.

Everything.

Ever wonder how the dear old Abraham would have felt when God told him to sacrifice Isaac?

“Issac? My only son? Hey God…don’t pull my leg on this, it ain’t funny”
“You’re not kidding are you God?”
“God, you can’t be serious.”
“I thought you just gave him to me?”
“What will become of your promise of countless decendants?”

Just to put things in perspective…Abraham was old. I mean OLD. Had his first child when he was a hundred. You’d think he’s not likely to have another child at all. And God had just asked him to walk up the hill to sacrifice his only son to Him.

Now what kind of God will do that?

A jealous but loving God – my God.

We all have our Isaacs in our lives. Something important that we hold on to. Something dearest to us. Possibly something that will stumble you in your walk with God. And i know firsthand how hard, how painful it is to give that thing up. Could be your grades. Looks. A person. Abilities. Possessions. Anything you hold dear to you. The tread up the hill with what you are about to sacrifice is never easy – if it was, it wouldn’t be a sacrifice. (remember David? “I will not offer anything that cost me nothing”)

Sometimes, like in the case of Abraham, your Isaac is saved. Sometimes it’s sacrificed, never to come back. Though it’s hard to believe, but God will honour that sacrifice made. I’ll say it again – it’s not easy, but it must be done. It will hurt, it will scar, it will bring pain and nights of tears. But if i had a choice, i’d still do it again. Give it all up to Him right now.

Practically speaking, with regard to that something you hold so so so so dear to yourself, strike off everything that you can that links to it. EVERYTHING. No pictures, erase the memories, wipe out the thoughts and plans you have. Nothing should be withheld from Him – not a trace. (and remember that He knows when you make a false sacrifice, i’ve been guilty of that too)

In making that small step of faith, you’ll find that you have nothing left. You’re hopeless. You’re helpless. You’re weak. If you do feel that, good. The weaker, the more inadequate and incomplete you feel the better. Because in our weakness His strength is made perfect. Not good, not better, not obvious, but perfect.

I dare say God will honour that sacrifice. God will give something back – He always does. But unless you can let go of the costume jewelery, He can’t give you the real deal. Believe me, i know the feeling – it goes *ouch*, *cry*, *sniff*, then *WOW*.

Abraham’s story had a happy ending – Isaac was saved at the last minute. Our story might not – the sacrificial knife might go all the way in. But know this – God will always provide. Always. Pain will heal. Sorrow will die. But the things that God provides will last beyond all that.

He who did not spare His own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
– Roman 8:32

Sacrifice. Trust. Receive. In that order.

Ever wonder how the dear old Abraham would have felt when God told him to sacrifice Isaac?

“Issac? My only son? Hey God…don’t pull my leg on this, it ain’t funny”
“You’re not kidding are you God?”
“God, you can’t be serious.”
“I thought you just gave him to me?”
“What will become of your promise of countless decendants?”

Just to put things in perspective…Abraham was old. I mean OLD. Had his first child when he was a hundred. You’d think he’s not likely to have another child at all. And God had just asked him to walk up the hill to sacrifice his only son to Him.

Now what kind of God will do that?

A jealous but loving God – my God.

We all have our Isaacs in our lives. Something important that we hold on to. Something dearest to us. Possibly something that will stumble you in your walk with God. And i know firsthand how hard, how painful it is to give that thing up. Could be your grades. Looks. A person. Abilities. Possessions. Anything you hold dear to you. The tread up the hill with what you are about to sacrifice is never easy – if it was, it wouldn’t be a sacrifice. (remember David? “I will not offer anything that cost me nothing”)

Sometimes, like in the case of Abraham, your Isaac is saved. Sometimes it’s sacrificed, never to come back. Though it’s hard to believe, but God will honour that sacrifice made. I’ll say it again – it’s not easy, but it must be done. It will hurt, it will scar, it will bring pain and nights of tears. But if i had a choice, i’d still do it again. Give it all up to Him right now.

Practically speaking, with regard to that something you hold so so so so dear to yourself, strike off everything that you can that links to it. EVERYTHING. No pictures, erase the memories, wipe out the thoughts and plans you have. Nothing should be withheld from Him – not a trace. (and remember that He knows when you make a false sacrifice, i’ve been guilty of that too)

In making that small step of faith, you’ll find that you have nothing left. You’re hopeless. You’re helpless. You’re weak. If you do feel that, good. The weaker, the more inadequate and incomplete you feel the better. Because in our weakness His strength is made perfect. Not good, not better, not obvious, but perfect.

I dare say God will honour that sacrifice. God will give something back – He always does. But unless you can let go of the costume jewelery, He can’t give you the real deal. Believe me, i know the feeling – it goes *ouch*, *cry*, *sniff*, then *WOW*.

Abraham’s story had a happy ending – Isaac was saved at the last minute. Our story might not – the sacrificial knife might go all the way in. But know this – God will always provide. Always. Pain will heal. Sorrow will die. But the things that God provides will last beyond all that.

He who did not spare His own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?
– Roman 8:32

Sacrifice. Trust. Receive. In that order.

Hope…

Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
There’s a land that i heard of
Once of in a lullaby

Somewhere over the rainbow
Skies are blue
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true

Someday i’ll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
And way above the chimney tops
That’s where you’ll find me

Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly
Birds fly over the rainbow
Why then oh why can’t i?

Love this song…been with me since young, and it always brought me happy things. But more than a simple song that makes you believe in the power of wishes, now it speaks more to me.

The world is full of incomplete things, full of things that (pardon me) will simply leave us spent. But God has provided for us. He will provide. That place over the rainbow isn’t all that far away. It’s really only a trust away.

Faith is being sure of what we do not know and certain of what we do not see. Do we trust that God will provide whatever we need? Songs like this bring hope, bring something that we can look forward to. But as much as that something is not yet here, your hope and faith must be placed in something, someone, that can last…else you’ll end up distressing yourself and fretting over something that doesn’t exist (believe me, i’d know).

Father, take my dreams. Take my hopes, take my wishes, take my endeavours…and use them for Your own. Help us to trust that you will provide. Help us to seek you first and listen to your voice. Help us to gaze up once again at Your light. Help us to stop our spinning…grant us sight.

If any of you noticed, i’m no longer using my alias of “Ky’el Wolfpacker” anymore, even though it remains as my signature on emails and represents part of what i believe in.

Reason being that i finally believe there’s no need to hide any more – ky’el wolfpacker resides inside Jon, not the other way round. As much as the name embodies part of what i believe in, part of what i stand for, it also remains simply a fraction of the whole me.

No more hiding behind masks. No more pretence of who i really am.

Jon is just jon – marvellously and wonderfully created by God to be that way.

“Quantum physics is the real physics…everything else is an approximation”
– Frank Watt, Lecture Group D, Friday, 1600-1800hrs.

Yup that was said today by my lecturer….and somehow it sparked off something in my head. Got me thinking about God and all His attributes. Love, Joy, Faithfulness, Obedience…everything.

How we try to fill our lives with things…empty things to clutter up your meaningless life with. Things that leave you spent. Things that leave you weary. Things that leave you hurt, tired, scarred, beaten, distressed, stressed…and feeling as empty as where the things came from.

We wear fake smiles to cheer ourselves up. We laugh cold laughter to fool the people around us. We put on masks to hide how we really feel and who we really are. We try and be good people – all of us want to be good and good in something..(though i know of people who’s rather be good for nothing..haha..)

But in all this, all the human emotions, all the materials of this world are transient. Oh they might bring you joy for a while, but like a new toy, the novelty wears down. Grades and certificates turn yellow with age. Books curl. Looks fade.

Unless something is given by God, given in God’s mercy and grace, it will not last. We can fight. We can try. But if it cannot happen, if we cannot hold on anymore, it will fail. All the human emotions that we feel are all lacking of one thing – selflessness and the willingness to give ALL glory to God. Only that which is from God is to be kept – and even then, to be surrendered should He ask for it again.

You want righteousness? Jehovah Tsidkenu.

You want healing? Jehovah Rapha.

You want sanctification? Jehovah M’kaddesh.

You want a comforting presence? Jehovah Shammah.

You want peace? Jehovah Shalom.

You want someone to lead you through tough paths of your life and give you hope? Jehovah Rohi.

You want providence? Jehovah Jireh.

You want the real thing? Toss the Coke in the trash. Whatever it is, God’s ___________ (you fill in the blank) is the real thing.

“Here I stand, I can do no other. God help me.”

Martin Luther

Now Unto Him

Now unto Him who is able
To keep you from falling
And to make you stand in His presence
Blameless and with great joy

To the only God our Saviour
Through Jesus Christ our Lord
Be the glory, and the majesty
Dominion, and authority
For now and ever,
Amen

Amended the lyrics as noted by a friendly commenter! 😀

as told by Jason Gan

The red bean and the coconut, despite being very different beings, were friends. One was small and red, living in a packet along with a hundred or so other red beans in the supermarket. The other was enjoying life, growing big and round and swaying in the breeze.

One day the coconut said to the red bean, “My dear friend red bean, how can you be content where you are? Why can’t you be more like me – i grow big and round and orange (or green, as the case may be) and i take pride in being able to sway in the breeze along with all the other coconuts up here. Why do you continue to live in that small plastic packet and squeeze yourself like red beans (excuse the pun) along with the others?”

The red bean replied, “My dear friend coconut, i admire and respect you for your ability to sway majestically in the breeze, creating Bollywood style backgrounds at which people can dance and sing around, being able to look at all the beach hunks and babes. But like you, i know my purpose – in order for my purpose to be fulfilled, and to grow into a healthy plant, i must die and shed the tight skin of mine. Even though i die, my dear friend coconut, many others will sprout from me, and i will bear fruit.”

As corny as it sounds, this story is very real. Many of us are still coconuts, taking pride in our works and our stature, our talents and our abilities. But for us to achieve our real purpose, we must die – die to ourselves, and let God take control. Should we decide be like the coconut, all we can do is sway where the wind blows. But if we let God take control, die to ourselves, then even the red bean can sprout and flower into a plant that will bring forth many more.

I wanna be the red bean…do you?