Baring my heart.

Mysterious as the dark side of the moon.

Tag: GFRESH

Book: Two Thousand and Eleven. Chapter: January

See all of the “chapters” from 2011 here.

 
January has ended and I realised that I have not yet written a blog post this year. So I decided that even though my Project 365 isn’t meant for the public, I’d like to share some of the highlights of the past month.

January 1st, 2011For the past several years, my family has spent New Years Eve at the house of our Senior Pastor and his family. So I decided that Photo #1 would be of the TV while the fireworks were going off at Sydney Harbour. I didn’t know that you needed to take a photo to open the film cartridge on a polaroid camera, so I sat there watching the TV waiting for the best moment to take a photo. When I found the perfect moment, I pressed the shutter button, and gasped as I realised that the “photo” coming out of the camera wasn’t even a photo. I positioned myself for the next good scene of fireworks, only to find that the fireworks had ended. So now that my film cartridge was opened, I had to settle for a photo of myself with sparklers.

January 4th, 2011January 6th, 2011

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Unirregular

There’s a blog bug goin’ around in GFRESH and it doesn’t seem to have bitten me yet.

I’ve been struggling like crazy to formulate a post in which I share all the lessons I’ve learnt from and since SOS camp. But with all the distractions, I haven’t been able to collect my thoughts properly into a clear and articulate post that doesn’t go off into different tangents at every paragraph.

People have been asking me when I’m going to post a new one, so I feel somewhat pressured to write a post that has a huge bang; one that leaves everyone in absolute awe of my wisdom. But I realised that it would be ridiculous and that’d be impossible.

So instead of trying to write something, I’m just going to post the transcript of part of a preaching by Joseph Prince from Hillsong Conference in 2007. My sister was actually watching the DVD of said preaching one afternoon, and I was sitting in the lounge room as well, eating, and I heard this part and it left me in awe. So here, I share it to you, because it is an amazing teaching:

[Referring to John 13:23-24] The Bible says that John was leaning on Jesus’ breast that night. It’s an expression of depending on the Lord’s love for him, not on his love for the Lord. He wasn’t leaning on his own bosom. He was depending on the Lord’s love for him.

Peter, on the other hand — he defies the believers and the law who boast of their love for the Lord. When the Lord says, “One of you shall betray me,” Peter said, “Lord, if all these should betray You, I’d never, ever betray You. And where You go, I’ll follow, I’ll follow. [Sings] You’ll always be my first love, my first love…” Before the night was over, he denied ever, ever knowing his Master. Whereas when you find the disciple who boasts of the Lord’s love for him, John… at the foot of the cross.”

The first result of knowing that you are loved by God, of practising the sense of being loved by God, to be effectively under grace is to always feed on his love for you, because it’s a fixed and constant that God loves you.

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Raised hands, not weapons, win the battles

This was my photo for Friday, September 11 (what a date), 2009, which was day 3 of my Project:

Exodus 17:8-16

What was so significant about that day that I would post a photo of my Bible and notebook for the Project? An encounter with God happened.

I’m 3 weeks into my fast and I’ve found that while the first 2 weeks were pretty easy, the third (this past week) wasn’t. And I’ve also learned, through accountability with other girls at GFRESH, that it’s when you’re doing your best that the Enemy will work harder to attack you and bring you down.

By the end of the week, I felt so unworthy to face God, that I was actually relieved that I wasn’t scheduled to be up for worship at GFRESH. I didn’t want to be up on the stage playing piano for a King that I wasn’t worthy to face. I felt dirty and useless — but a King’s court is spotlessly clean, and He only has courtiers that are there to serve and submit to Him.

During worship, God pressed the above passage — Exodus 17:8-16 — onto my heart:

     8 The Amalekites came and attacked the Israelites at Rephidim. 9 Moses said to Joshua, “Choose some of our men and go out to fight the Amalekites. Tomorrow I will stand on top of the hill with the staff of God in my hands.”
     10 So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. 11 As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. 12 When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up — one on one side, one on the other — so that his hands remained steady till sunset. 13 So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword.
     14 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Write this on a scroll as something to be remembered and make sure that Joshua hears it, because I will completely blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven.”
     15 Moses built an altar and called it The LORD is my Banner. 16 He said, “For hands were lifted up to the throne of the LORD. The LORD will be at war against the Amalekites from generation to generation.”

So when we got the chance to sit down, I pulled out my notebook and borrowed a pen from Christine to jot down what God taught me from the story:

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I’m aiming for a HD

I’m studying for an exam that’s far more important than any other, and while I now know all the theory, I’m finding it hard to actually apply it in order to pass the exam — which is the application of the theory in my life. Anticipating the final exam is getting me more pumped for SOS (graduation), but if I don’t study hard enough and I end up with less than a High Distinction, I’ll feel guilty throughout my graduation ceremony because I didn’t reach the standard I had set for myself earlier, which was to get a HD. Sure, a Distinction, Credit or Pass will still result in me getting my diploma and graduating, but a HD is my target and goal. If I miss my target, even by one mark, graduation will not be a time for me to celebrate my achievements — it will just be another ceremony, another piece of paper, another camp.

After a student graduates from high school, what do they do? They celebrate, they party, they go on holiday, they become lazy and sleep in every day. The better prepared students, however, will have applied for jobs well before graduation, so that when they leave school, they are not being idle and they are making the most of their time. They will enter the REAL WORLD in order to MAKE A LIVING.

Often, after youth camps, the passion resides. The youth were zealous during the 3 or 4 days of camp, but when they return home and enter the REAL WORLD (school, work, etc.), their passion dies and they stop studying. They become lazy, sleepy and idle. They go back to their old ways of living, which, in reality, means spiritual death.

This fast is preparation for my turn to enter the REAL WORLD, so that when I graduate — when SOS is over and I go back to uni the following day — my passion will not die and I won’t stop studying. I won’t have a “job”, per se, but there will be a change reflected in me that will alert people in the REAL WORLD that I am “making a living” — that I am going to work every day; that I am dying to self and taking up my cross daily.

But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have said to you.

John 14:26

The Holy Spirit, my Teacher, did not teach me the things that He has and then tested me on it so that I would graduate, and then that was it. He didn’t teach me important, life-changing lessons so that I would forget all of it after graduation, but so that when employers (the unsaved) look at my qualifications, they see that I HAVE the qualifications. They will see that I when I carry the name of Christ, it is not merely a label to notify other Christians that we can hang out on a Sunday morning. But it is a title, a name, and a calling that I was predestined to have. It is a way of living that I will choose to live on a daily basis, not so that I look holy compared to the rest of the world, but because I desire to live the Matthew 22:37 life — to love the Lord my God with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my mind.

– “Keep moving forward.” – Walt Disney

 

Grab that baton and run for your life!

It’s Monday the 24th of August and Day 3 of my fast, and I’m feeling pretty darn good about my weekend. A normal Saturday would have consisted of me sitting in or on my bed checking Facebook, checking emails, reading webcomics and watching a load of Youtube videos. Then, when that was done, I’d sit in front of the TV watching a movie or browsing TV channels while I waited for my piano students to arrive for their lessons (neither of them came on Saturday, by the way, so I guess this weekend was an unexpected breather for me).

Over this weekend, though, I had so much time to myself and I had no idea what to do. I had homework to complete, notes to read, group assessment meetings to organise, a scarf to knit (that I wanted to finish before our now-ending winter ended), and books to finish, but, I still didn’t know what to do. I was being a lazy couch potato, but I now realise that this fast is not just a break from the things that used to unnecessarily consume all of my time. Instead, this fast is a chance for me to run faster than I have ever run before!

When I was in primary school and high school [at Bethel] I used to be really active in athletics. I was able to throw the shot or the discus the furthest. I jumped the longest in long jump, and the highest in high jump. I’d run the 100m in a reasonable time and come first. My ‘amazing’ results sent me to Zone every year, but when I threw, jumped or ran against the girls from the other schools, I couldn’t actually throw that far, I couldn’t actually jump that high, and I wasn’t actually that fast. Needless to say, I always came last (I was lucky if I came 2nd last).

For the purpose of this blog post, and because life is a race that we are running (not a heavy metal ball that we are throwing), let’s focus on the 100 metre event and ignore all the other events.

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