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Archive for April, 2012

April Showers

today is the last day of April

i love April

esp April Showers

which cause the earth to be alive again ~

chūn huí dà dì ~ 春 回 大 地 ~ Spring has returned!




Song of Songs 2:11-12

See! The winter is past;

the rains are over and gone.

Flowers appear on the earth;

the season of singing has come,

the cooing of doves is heard in our land.



Yeah, I am so glad one of my favorite k-drama actresses is filming under the cherry blossoms in her recent drama, Rooftop Prince ;p

I love HJM as an actress and have enjoyed many of her dramas such as All In; Dae Jang Guem; Resurrection; Capital Scandal; Detective K with Kim Myung Min in movie. I hope to watch Padam Padam soon – the sound of his and her heartbeats.  Padam in French means ‘to thump’.  Heard it was a tear-jearker 😦
Meanwhile, I am thoroughly enjoy watching Rooftop Prince!

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Fields of Glory

t’was a nice springy day
and so the playful cats from the attic
decided to sneak out and explore the whole new world out there…







Matthew 6:28-29


“And why do you worry about clothes?

See how the flowers of the field grow.

They do not labor or spin.

Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor…

was dressed like one of these!

peek-a-boo…



looks like the trio had a terrific tulip tour roaming these fields of glory!

guess it’s time to head back to the attic…

but…

with much reluctance 😦

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Heaven’s Garden

it has been exactly a month today since he went to be with the Lord

ever since I knew him
he was a fighter
he fought hard to survive
he signaled to his family that he wanted to live…
thus his family teamed up with him to fight life head on

despite his limited movement
he did not let fun passed him by
he had a special friend — his fancy wheelchair —
to chauffeur him wherever he went

he loved travelling
was a fanatic Canuck hockey fan
he enjoyed people and loved playing team sports
he loved coming to our Summer Camps
for fun activities and crafts with other children

he knew how to embrace and enjoy life
he did not let his limitation hindered him from living

his was a huggable baby, boy and youth
when he hugged, he didn’t let go easily
his hug was intense and very heart-warming

he was good at enduring the sufferings in his body
and not let others see his pains

in his vulnerability and determination
he knew his strength is in the Lord
in his family
and in the circle of his friends

now who was this tough cookie, one wondered…
it’s John
– a special gift from God –

the whisper
A few days before John went to be with the Lord
he manoeuvred his wheelchair to his sister room
told her a secret in sign language
that God had given him a message:
“Everything will be alright”

the sight of heaven
the night before God took John to heaven
he kept pointing to the ceiling
which he had been gesturing quite frequent recently
mom asked if he had seen something
John replied that he did
mom assumed he was excited about the beautiful sky mural
which daddy had painted for him on the ceiling a couple of months ago

the tranquil garden
that same night
John’s elder brother had a prophetic dream
in the dream
the two brothers were walking
in a tranquil garden
with fields and fields of flowers
as they were strolling along
there before them appeared a road
which separated the garden into two parts
all of a sudden
John stood up from the wheelchair
walked towards the path
leaving big brother behind
as he walked he pulled off his breathing tube
turned around
waved goodbye
talked to big brother
from the other side
with a special language
that big brother couldn’t comprehend

the dancing balloon
the morning John rest in peace
the nurse who tended to him
noticed a helium balloon that was deflated
suddenly floating gently ’round the room
she felt it was as if John’s spirit
was playing with the special balloon
that helium balloon
was given to John six weeks ago
during our church 40th Anniversary Celebration

the radiant rainbow
the afternoon John rest in peace
eldest sister gazed out from her window
there on the horizon appeared a radiant rainbow
she stirred at this wonderful sign from God
that indeed “Everything is alright”
as conveyed by youngest brother
just a few days ago
while he was still on earth

the drizzling snow
that evening before the family went to bed
the parents prayed to God for another sign
that their youngest son is indeed by God’s side

the next morning
something unanticipated happened
it was snowing!
snow — was John’s favorite thing
he loved to play in the snow, in drizzling snow
hence, another promising sign
to assure the family that
John has indeed returned home — to Heaven —
the place where there is
no pain, no sorrow and no suffering!

the special gift
‘The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away’
reminiscing the many challenges and happiness
the family had cherished with John
big brother penned a poem
big sister painted the poem
to celebrate the precious life
of their playful brother

the poem — Brother’s Dream
the brother who could dream
gave his dream to his brother who could speak
his brother who could speak
gave his brother’s dream to his sister who could draw
and his sister who could draw
gave her brother’s dream to the world
so that he could share the happiness and joy
bestowed upon him by the Lord
with the world he loved so

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Is That You, God?

a friend and i were supposed to go for a long drive

and to visit the tulip festival

but then plan changed

oh well…

a few minutes later

someone brought in a bouquet of tulips

asked if i would like to enjoy them

i want, i want!

tried to concentrate at work

but glanced at those bundle of beauties

every so often

suddenly it dawn on me…

hey, someone must’ve known about me not able to go for the tulips outing

thus bring on this big bunch of flowers for me to enjoy

is that You, God?

this unexpected favor so reminds me of the inspirational prayer below

I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.
I was made weak, that I might learn humbly to obey.

I asked for health, that I might do greater things.
I was given infirmity, that I might do better things.

I asked for riches, that I might be happy.
I was given poverty, that I might be wise.

I asked for power that I might have the praise of men.
I was given weakness, that I might feel the need of God.

I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life.
I was given life, that I might enjoy all things.

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When the Vessel Speaks!

I have to submit an assignment on biblical narrative.

I’m not allowed to write popular stories such as Noah’s ark, Daniel in the lion’s den, what else, five loaves and 2 fishes…

tough, Tough, TOUGH,

I surely need a  miracle!

Anyway…

~~

I used to sulk because I hated what I was doing. See, all day long I just stood there in the courtyard with my mom and dad and my three siblings waiting to be filled up with water. The water was used to wash the dusty feet of guests before they entered the house of my master, Ilan. Master Ilan was a very generous person. He always made sure that we were completely filled so that when unexpected guests come, there would always be water to wash their tired feet.

I used to admire the sandals of the guests and wished that I could travel from place to place like them. But mom and dad always reminded me to be grateful for who I am, and to be a useful vessel for our master. They explained that the cleansing water in the courtyard was a sign of respect to visitors and to make them feel welcome. Understanding my purpose and responsibility, I began to appreciate my role and to enjoy what I was doing – a simple yet important task!

These past few days, my master’s house has been filled with people. Many, many guests and their children, babies, toddlers, teenagers all have come to celebrate the wedding of Jonathan, Master Ilan’s one and only son.

I watched the happy servants bringing in platter after platter of food, placing them onto the oversized dining table for the guests to eat; and jugs and jugs of wine for the guests to drink. Mom told us that this wedding celebration would be going on for seven days.   Wow! Today is only the third day!

One of Master Ilan’s relatives, Jesus, also came with his new friends, to celebrate Jonathan’s wedding. I was glad to provide water to clean their dusty sandals and feet. According to what I heard, this Jesus is a God-fearing man who tells people about God and heaven wherever he goes.

While everyone was feasting and drinking gleefully at the banquet hall, and children playing joyfully with one another at the courtyard, I noticed a group of worried servants anxiously whispering to one another outside the banquet hall. I overheard them talking about the empty wine barrels. It looked like they are running out of wine.

I knew Master Ilan was a wealthy and generous person who always has a lot of food and drink to serve his guests.  So I told myself, “Don’t worry, be happy, everything will be just fine”.

But my dad said if the guests found out there was no more wine, it would be very embarrassing, even disgraceful, for Master Ilan. After hearing that, my heart sank, for there was indeed no more wine for the guests!

Suddenly, I had an idea! I blurted out, “Why don’t the servants just serve water to the guests since it is such a hot day?” But daddy told me that wine symbolizes joy and happiness – and it is a must to have at a wedding celebration!  Oh no…, what could we do? I know my master is rich and is capable of providing but this time he is helpless! “Lord, please help!” I prayed.

While everyone was panicking about the situation, I saw Jesus coming out from the banquet hall. He talked to the servants and directed them to fill us up, all six of us vessels. The servants were a bit apprehensive but they knew that Jesus was a godly and creative man, so they did exactly what He told them to do. They filled us with water, up to the brim.

I was puzzled about what all the water was going to be used for since the guests had already cleaned their feet. While lost in thoughts, I felt someone’s hand on my brim. I looked up and it was the hand of Jesus.  He winked at me gently and then he looked up to the heavens and began to pray.

All of a sudden, I felt something bubbling in me, like a soda… then, I smelled something sweet and fragrant, like grape juice, on my whole body!  What had happened, I gasped!  Then, I heard Jesus telling the servants to ladle the fragrant drink from our vessels and pour them into the golden jugs, so they could start serving the wedding guests again. The servants were startled for they couldn’t believe their eyes. They were amazed to see that Jesus had turned water into wine right before their very eyes!

This Jesus was no ordinary man.  He has done a supernatural thing — He is a miracle maker! He has revealed his glory by changing water into wine.  Those who witnessed what he did that day declared that he was the Son of God.  Many people, including his new friends whom they called disciples, and his cousin, Master Ilan, praised him and put their trust in him.

I was so excited because Jesus had performed a miracle.  He had answered my prayer. He had saved my Master Ilan from disgrace for he had miraculously changed the water into wine.

And… the wedding party continued!

It has been close to 2000 years since Jesus’ first miracle at the wedding in Cana, and word about his miracles and power to transform lives continue to spread throughout the world.

taken at Cana

Though I can’t be like the dusty sandals, traveling from place to place, I am so grateful to be just where I am — An ordinary water vessel still serving in my master’s family courtyard.   Now my task is to retell the first miracle that Jesus performed, that which I have witnessed, to the hundreds and hundreds of tourists who come by every day from all over the world to visit Cana.  I pray and hope that through listening to me telling about the miraculous power of Jesus, many will continue to praise Him and put their hope in Him.

taken at Cana


According to tradition, below is the kind of stone water container used;  picture taken by a friend who just came back from Israel.

real water jar in Cana

Biblical narrative was taken from John 2:1-11


Wall mural illustrated by our Sunday School teaching team.

 

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All in a day’s work!

Blessed Easter Monday everyone!

I know there is Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.

And the day after Easter Sunday is Easter Monday.

How about the day before Easter Sunday — the day between Good Friday and Easter Sunday — How shall we call it?

Silent Saturday? Secret Saturday? Sacred Saturday or Holy Saturday?

How about a PERFECT Sun-sensational Saturday?

Psalm 18:2
The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

To reach for these gorgeous views, one surely has to strive hard and does a lot of rock huggings…

After many slips and scratches, we managed to find our secret hide-out and ready…

to put back the calories that we burnt from those strenuous workout!

Like what one of the gals said: Thanks be to God for a great time to enjoy His good gifts with fellow naturalists, foto nazis & food lovers!

Next race… we shall conquer another fun cliff!

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Hakuna Matata!

Happy Easter!

We decided to talk about ‘lion’ today and if the children are attentive,
they might be able to catch a lion home, ROARRR!

When it comes to lions and cub

Kids’ knowledge is endless…

King of the jungle/animals
fearsome and sharp teeth
Daniel in the lion’s den
Shepherd boy David & the lions
Samson & the lion
I could only remember the lion and mouse from Aesop’s fable

Lion a symbolic motif in the bible representing strength, power and authority

“Hakuna Matata” from ‘the Lion King’ meant ‘no worry’

‘No worry’ — yes turn our worry to worship — Matthew 6

One child shared with us about what she learned in school on lion and lamb. She said “When it’s going to rain, the lion comes out very quickly but the lamb would come out slowly!” The term “the lion and the lamb” is often used during Spring weather.   In school, children learning about weather forecast would often be asked to forecast if the upcoming weather would be like a “gentle lamb” — sunny & breezy or like a “lion” — roaring in with strong wind, rain and storm ;p

Surely it is a divine appointed message for today our topic was on the Lamb and the Lion, specifically the Sacrificial Lamb and the Lion of the tribe of Judah.

Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:19).

Revelations 5: 5,6
… “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.”   Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits] of God sent out into all the earth.

The other day, sensational Sarah shared with me her thought on lion and lamb:

The power of God is different from, or even “opposite from” human understanding. True power is manifested through humble sacrifice. That kind of love is greater than military strength or as the symbol says, “a lion”.

Aslan from “Narnia” also appears to be a powerful figure, but his true power is shown when he laid down his life for Edmund, for that is the only way to break the ancient curse, when a sinless one willingly give up his life for a sinful one.

“Lion king” is also filled with Christian symbolism. (although it was written on the template of “Hamlet”, but we can give it a Christian interpretation). Mufasa died to save Simba from his error. The strong becomes the weakest, and that is why he is strong. The strong ones who are not willing to give up their strength for the benefit of the weak is not seen as strong, but selfish tyrants.

Based on Revelation 5, the way that Jesus appeared is meek, mild, gentle, humble, and most of all, sacrificial (for He had been slain).

However, there will be a time when the power of Christ is no longer manifested through meekness. When He comes again, He will be powerful and glorious, a terrifying sight to behold for those who oppose him. He will come and wipe out His enemies. Are you willing to be on God’s side? Receive Jesus while He comes to us as a Lamb for it’ll be too late when He comes back as a Lion and judge us.

After retelling this powerful message to children and watching the clip below, of course, everyone wanted to believe and put their faith in Jesus who is the Sacrificial Lamb of God and the Lion of the tribe of Judah!

Each child was given a lion stuff animal as a symbol to remind us that Jesus Christ is the powerful and majestic King of kings and the Lord of lords who reigns forever.  He alone is worthy of all our praise and honor!

Hakuna Matata…,  for we are confident that Jesus is with us now and forever more!

On Easter, it is also our tradition to release balloons to signify Jesus’ resurrection and ascending to heaven. Children get to write their names in group on the balloons and together we let the balloons fly high to the sky symbolizing the hope we have in going to heaven soon.





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