Saturday, June 27, 2015

(Wong, 2015)

"Not to be so preoccupied with Why and What God is doing in my life? but rather to just trust in Him to lead us in the right path, walking moment by moment in God's grace and in the fear of the Lord. 
This calls for walking by faith, and not by sight. This calls for a very moment-by-moment living, with God and for God. This I believe will eventually unfold, as we look back, into a beautiful picture of God's handiwork in our lives." (Wong, 2015)
Typed this on my phone this Wednesday; inspired by a friend's wedding video where they traced their grace-filled lives-


So many decisions I made without a clear sign from God. Yet His grace, love and sovereign power worked so beautifully so that I stand today- a child of God.  


 The very pivotal decision to ultimately chose Social Work. It was kind of a no-brainer then, and now. But I have asked myself (and still do sometimes), can I love this much, can I see the deepest hurts and still say that God is good, can I hope against hope, can I can I. God can.



Then Sidewalk because of XH who pulled me to explore starting a social enterprise with her.



Then BLESS cos I was persuaded by the very persuasive & passionate Francesca. 

Then many things happened in between, of which I think the very defining one is CASA. I really gave my 100% to this ministry (which is why it hurts a bit to have so little of my friends walking with me in this but to each He calls I guess). 


Realised I really enjoy children too after joining Sunday School about the same time.


Then it was during Y internship which brought me places and cause me to grow so much in these short 7 weeks. To be more open in saying what I feel, to lead as a servant, to want to pray for healing in relationships. 
I proudly (but also a bit abashedly) admit that my decisions to go Shang Hai, to intern at the Y, was motivated by my romantic fancies. LOL I really am INFJ but I'm too beautifully made to be boxed cos I can be an extrovert sometimes too.


Grace even in reckless moments- was drinking illegally at the carpark near Zouk. An experience I will hold close, even though I probably will never do it again.



"And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge- that you may be filled to the measure of the fullness of God."
(Ephesians 4:17b- 19, NIV)

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Hibernate

That was what I really wanted to do, many times this past few months of 2015. The last weekend of May I literally slept it away (Yes, that was the week I wrote my previous post which was brimming with passionate adrenaline).

Fast forward to this weekend.

Saturday

Woke up at 7am to travel to Aljunied for Playmax 4 briefing. Got horribly lost even with Google Maps when walking through many Lorong Geylang Roads.


But I was feeling inquisitive and didn't mind it one bit (except for the fact that I was running quite late). Walking through the roads with the temples, migrant worker hostels and jumbled mix of buildings, I felt like I was on an adventure.

Hightailed back home to make onde onde, buoyed by the wonderful opportunity to fulfill Jesus' commission in such an exciting way.


Life lessons from making onde onde:

1. The recipe looked so easy I cannot resist making it because onde onde is like the trademark of a domestic goddess; alas the too-easily-thrown-together skin was meh- Shortcuts can work beautifully. But listen when people tell you they can cut short your ideal plans. 

2. Idealistic me (this is when I abandon practical considerations like the fact that I haven't tried this recipe before) doubled the recipe- Amidst the excitement of adventure and ideas, give some ear to that pesky voice questioning you. It can hold you back for the worse, but its doubts are valid.

3. I was in a good mood so I could make light of the fact that these onde onde weren't as pretty a eat as they looked here; and well I guess I still brought some joy to my family and friends- Why is it that moods so dictate our reality?

Third program for the day: Shopping mission with le parents. Was pretty tired by then and would have insisted to stop shopping and go home if I weren't in a buoyant mood.


Sunday (today)
Woke up at 5.30am, scrambled to leave house in time because I was fixed on wearing my new red shoes. Half-awake body gunned for that 174 that brings me to church on time. Thanked God that run; felt pretty alive after that. 

Felt like a salesman- asking people to join Playmax. I am actually very shy as I like to tell people when I don't wanna initiate social interaction. But was on a roll today.

Didn't know what the heck was happening in the Sunday School youth programme which WL asked me to help in. Just gung ho say that I don't know what I'm supposed to do and well, it turned out pretty well. Church is where I feel shy quite a lot. Too many people whom I don't know, but who know each other well. 

And realised that I really love connecting people. To other people, to resources, or to where they can use their potential. 

Back to the title: Hibernate. I wanted to post this because I am reminded again how much my mood/emotions dictate what I do. 
I find that seeing them as something happening to me rather than then what is really happening helps. Not feeding those feelings with the over-need to feel helps too. 

But then again, on a cognitive & rational level, I do realise I need rest. Not to hibernate thinking that I am so done with all these but a godly rest.

That's what Sabbath is for :)


Thursday, May 28, 2015

With my bear Bestie


I am going to present in the AGM in  an hour's time and just did a quick run through but I still feel like I need to process my thoughts first.

Spent a long time on the poolside chair at Y Rooftop today- thinking, praying, sensing within myself.

I think it is also the many things that happened all at once that pushed me to just stop and think. I need space. It can be self-centred at first, this need, but in the end something comes through from God.

So today found out that:
- Agnes' cousin who had slipped into coma and the family needed to make a decision on whether to take her off life support.

- Belvia's friend whose mum had died after a brain tumour operation

- My intentions to serve, to journey with the committee I am working with has been misunderstood (I had vibes about it but I have been putting off confronting these feelings)

- The Pres is quite a nice person whom I can open up to (but I didn't really until the latter half of the lunch)

- I still have that feeling that God is going to put us together; which is 1/3 unsettling because I cannot see & this is a dangerous thing to hold on to and 2/3 gives me peace

- The song 'I Lived' sung by Glee cast is uber nice

Disparate thoughts I know- all rolling, converging in my mind as I sat on that poolside chair. At the back of my mind I was musing that the ang moh swimming must think I'm on high tension.

Anyway, what I felt I heard from God:

1. I should stop trying to hide- my capability, skills, works- to stop taking a keep-a-low-profile-approach to life  but seek to be Christ.
- Rather than downplaying my success, I should downplay the importance of success and elevate the essentiality of being Christ.


2. For most part, I guess when there was a possibility of being hurt I will give lesser than 100% to avoid getting hurt. But now that I am pushing at 100, I am vulnerable. To be that sincere, to be that genuine, to be that open, to give what I have- that is scary.


3. But felt like God is empowering me for greater things, which needs that 100 that I am scared to give. So I asked for courage and empowerment of the Holy Spirit.


Pardon if I sound incoherent- just typing as I go along without really processing what has already been processed.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Sebuah lagu yang menunjukkan bagaimana aku rasa


Aku tahu aku blog banyak kali baru-baru ini. Tetapi aku (1) perlu praktis bahasa Melayu (2) berasa sangat tertekan- terlalu banyak perkara di atas minda aku (3) lagu ini berkata apa yang aku rasa tentang dia- jadi aku hendak menulis. Harap ini akan membuat aku berasa lebih baik.

Tuhan, aku tahu berliau tahu segala sesuatu, dan semua perkara akan membaikan aku.

Untuk dia: Biar aku mencintaimu biar tiada siapa yang tahu. Biar aku mencintaimu dalam diam ataupun bisu. Sehingga tidak menyakitkan apabila bercakap tentang kamu.


Saturday, May 16, 2015

1 Corinthians 8:1b

The theme of these past 4 days in Shang Hai. No coincidences with God; 1 Corinthians 8 was my QT reading as I held on to my luggage on the near-empty morning train.

"Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up."



Some thoughts before I knock out:
1. Was struggling with whether I should make this blog private or at least remove its link from my FB (which I had put in vain intentions in the first place). 

2. But the purpose of this blog now is really to edify people- that my walk with God can encourage and spur other Christians on towards love and good deeds, and be a testimony to those who have yet to know Christ.

3. But but but, other than my dear friends Clemmy, Jas and Bennie if you know me personally and are reading this now please please don't discuss any of the blog's content with me. Thanks. (This is meant to be an absolute, non-negotiable request: please give my autonomous face)

4. Other than that, I am fine with being out in the open. Not boasting but really, I am so capable in many things, doing so many things. All these failures/sins I must remember:
"I will boast about a man like that, but I will not boast about myself, except about my weaknesses."  2 Corinthians 12: 5


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Haha it's okay lah

 /idiom/
A common Singapore phrase

  • Used superficially to hide hurts and deflect further questions
  • Used self-righteously to say that though one is hurt/wronged, one is benevolent while wishing hard that the other party is seen as an asshole 
  • Used impatiently to prevent others from doing the work one knows he/she can do in a fraction of the time, not thinking about building others up
  • Used as one ought to, to say simply: God is in control, and therefore all is well 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

study break

People showing competence in self-regulation have, among other things adaptability. I think I'm quite good at reading emotional currents but not influence.

The kind of very applicable stuff that I've been studying for 3 days straight. It's so utterly common sense that one gets dreary from studying. 

So I decided that I shall post trivial things like the recipes I have adapted- learnt that to relieve stress, do something different to treat yourself. 

(N.B. By no means am I downplaying the importance of studying all these; negotiation and conflict resolution sounds like stuff we pick up but are actually skills that need to be honed. Really love how social work modules spur self reflection and that what is taught is so congruent to how I think the world should work.)

Vegan Banana Chocolate cupcakes
(Adapted from Joy of Baking and Eggless Cooking)

Moist and richly chocolatey as I like
Makes 12 cupcakes

Cupcakes
1 cup sugar
1 cup AP flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 t baking powder
3/4 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas (I used about 5 small ones)
1/2 warm water
1/4 cup almond milk
1 t apple cider vinegar/distilled vinegar

Chocolate Fudge frosting
2.5 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted
1/2 margarine, RTP
1 cup icing sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 t vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Line cupcake pan.
2. Whisk together dry ingredients. Mix together wet ingredients in another bowl, including the banana.
3. Add the flour mixture into the banana mixture, stirring batter till everything is mixed.
4. Fill cups 3/4 full, bake for about 20 minutes till skewer inserted comes out clean.
5. Remove from pan and set to cool on wire rack.

Now for the frosting:
1. Beat margarine till light and fluffy.
2. Beat in sugar till light and fluffy.
3. Add icing sugar, cocoa power and vanilla, beat till light and well incorporated.
4. Add chocolate and beat till frosting is smooth and glossy.

Fun fact about me: I hate eating bananas but am partial to banana bread. And these cupcakes.

Tomato-Cheese Bread Souffle
(Adapted from Real Simple)


Made these last week when I brought home 3 loaves of bread. Particularly pleased at my improvisation to transform the onion-cheese souffle into something more interesting.

Serves 6-8

2 T margarine, plus more for the dish
12 slices (about 10 oz) stale soft white bread, crust removed and torn into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup hot milk
1/4 cup tomato sauce, 3/4 cup hot water- mix together
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
4 eggs, separated (N.B. I used 1 egg less than what the original recipe called for cos that was all the fridge had; think the souffle would have risen more beautifully if there were 4 eggs)
5 wedges of spreadable cheese (3.75 oz), can add more or substitute with grated cheese 
1 t sea salt
1/2 t ground black pepper
1 large pinch ground nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees C. 'Butter' a 2- to 2 1/2- quart ceramic baking dish,set aside.
2. Stir together milk and tomato mixture; place the bread in a shallow bowl and pour mixture over it. Set aside for the liquid to be fully absorbed.
3.Melt margarine over medium-low heat. Saute the onion till tender, about 15 minutes.
4. Mash in the bread with your hands/spoon and stir in onions.
4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Pour into the bread mixture, stirring well till combined.
5. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites till stiff peaks form. Gently fold into bread mixture in 3 additions. 
6. Pour into dish and bake for 50 minutes until golden and firm. Serve warm.