Tuesday, September 27, 2005
I can say I serve You
I can say I fear You
I can say I worship You
I can say I want to make a difference and impact ppl and be the salt and light and make a stand for You
I can say it all now.
But in the end...when I stand before You
Can I say it still?
And, most chillingly of all,
Can I say I love You with all my heart, my mind and my strength?
Thanks for the jolt, God...
Sunday, September 25, 2005
I'll say from the start off that I think I've drunk more alcohol during these 5 days than the last few weeks in Liverpool and the few months before. This was because we went to Irish pubs a few nights during our stay there. Not that we were forced to drink either, but it was something to be experienced. We went to the Porterhouse Pub that claimed to serve every type of beer ever brewed in the world. They had this promotion where they poured out 3 types of beer for 5 euros. Each type of beer was 1/3rd of a pint, so Jack and I tried a pint between ourselves. Hsu pheen tried out a fruit beer from Belgium which was something none of us had ever had before. What made the experience even better was that there was absolutely no smoke inside the pubs. This is due to the superb ruling that says NO SMOKING INSIDE PUBS which well enforced in Ireland. Plus, the Irish live bands played wierd instruments like the highland pipes, adding to the atmosphere...it was almost like Starbucks with alcohol..one could actually talk and be heard in there. No doubt about it...a refreshing change from the loud headbanging clubs in Liverpool and Malaysia(not that I would choose pubbing over a good book anytime though:-) )
In Dublin we took a bus tour around the city, which introduced us to around 20 different tourist attractions, which we tried to squeeze into a day. In the end we only managed to visit the Guiness distillery, the Jameson Whiskey distillery, and the Dublin Zoo. I've gotten pretty tired of talking bout the Guinness since it seems to be THE place to visit in Dublin so I'll say something about the zoo instead. We were feeling slightly lightheaded when we visited the zoo cos we'd just finished the free pint of stout given on completion of the Guinness tour. So half the time Jack and Alex were making up dialogue for the animals and taking photos while trying to get the animals' attention, making for quite an interesting time.. Jack especially wanted to see the penguins and the polar bears. We succeeded on the first but were stumped by the second. However we did manage to run quite far around the zoo, catching the lions in heat, the otters who lept following us, the tapir whom Jack promptly declared to be Malaysian, the rhinos who were too bored to fight, the sea lions which looked like 'animals with amputated limbs' according to Alex and lots more.
The other fun part was meeting up friends from IMU. wE met Prakash in Dublin and he seemed to be in good shape(though he did get sick when we left). He seemed to be busy with rotations and was quite enthusiastic about his posting. In Belfast we met Ying Feng, Siao Wen, Ching Ling, Laurene and Kevin Tan plus a whole bunch of seniors. The Belfast people introduced us to their rooms, after which we chilled in their kitchen. Back in Dublin we met Bern who came all the way from Galway to meet us and Aaron. The common thing about everyone was that they were so delighted to meet up together again..Not everyone knew each other that well in IMU, but in these conditions everyone was eager to talk to each other and catch up. Which got me thinking; 'when we have a reunion next time, the response would probably be phenomenal' There was much exchanging of UK handphone numbers and lots of talk(esp by Ching Ling). Bern joined us for a visit to Trinity college on Sat morning, still his lame self:-) Aaron seemed fine as well, having found Victor Voon to help him settle down.
On Friday morning, we had breakfast? at 3am in....of all places, a Chinese restaurant in Belfast. And of all things, we had steamboat, cooked in the typical Hong Kong style. When the soup came, I was surprised to see what looked like bits of fried onion floating together with chilli slices. Being hungry, all of us dug in and a deathly silence fell around the table. All of us were trying to maintain our composure, cos' the fried onions were actually some kind of super spicy spice that went into your nostrils and up into your head if you bit on them. The whole meal was veryvery hot and different from any steamboat any of us had before(Jack claimed Taiwan steamboat was similar but hotter though). The spices gave the soup a really different taste. I recognised star of anise but the rest of the spices were little round balls which I couldn't identify. A more normal meal was the Irish breakfast we had this morning in Dublin... Bacon, a fried egg, pudding, sausages and thick slices of toast. Yup, sounds typical right? They call it a 'fried up' breakfast cos' everything is fried except the coffee. We also had a huge raspberry scone each, which would have been better served piping from the oven.
Bern and I stayed back at the cafe for a chat with Victor Voon while the others left for last minute shopping. David, Shubs, think you remember him from CSU right? He's the senior who was our patient a few times before Sem 3 exams. It was a good time of catching up and he encouraged us a lot. Typical of any Christian senior( and especially one from ECF:-) ) he wanted to find out whether or not we'd found a church where we were at home with. Came away refreshed and encouraged to press on in Liverpool.
There were the not so good times of the trip too... like us missing our flight home due to protests in the city centre, seeing 2 ppl getting beaten up by pub bouncers in Belfast and some other occasions. But I think on the whole we had a pretty good time, thanks hugely to Nigel(Hsu Pheen's friend) and Suann(Alex's friend) who kindly let us bunk in their houses for the duration. And so, Sat night saw 4 tired but satisfied medical students trudging up the road to Agnes Jones House..
That should be all..sorry if I'm not making sense sometimes cos trying to type as much as poss be4 I lose the inclination to do so:-) Going to be really busy next wweek cos classes are finally starting.. But b4 that, some photos...
Us at Liverpool John Lennon Airport
This particular whiskey gets up your nose and ears!
The house where Oscar Wilde once stayed in..
The Suir Road LUAS station(LUAS is the tram system in Dublin)..
Tourists enjoying a free pint of Guinness stout on top of the distillery.
At DUBLIN airport..
There we go.. a straightforward post.. can't go wrong there.
Thursday, September 15, 2005
A nice peaceful read in bed, curled up under the covers with the heater on during a windy, rainy night.
Watching the next episode of Naruto or Battlestar Galactica with the lights turned off and only my study lamp cum uplight on.
Coming back from hospital hungry, and making corned beef sandwiches with garlic cheese and herbs or pasta with sausage and cheese.
Going out with friends for a night out...dinner, movie and chill out someplace where we can catch up on each other's lives.
Going to church, expecting a time of meeting Him and pouring out my heart to Him without reservations, whether its by recommitment or asking Him for more territory.
Christmas in Sitiawan, carolling from house to house with the MYF, going to a church packed on Christmas morning, and dinner at grandparents' house.
Stepping up to an empty keyboard, or even better, a piano and just playing chords till I'm led to worship Him..then going on from song to song in worship, or making up something totally new.
Buying a new computer game that I've been waiting for some time(Fallout 3!), installing it and seeing the title page; then creating a new character and playing the first few easy levels.
Getting into a chat with ppl i know which goes beyond run-of-the-mill chit chat and touches on deeper stuff, knowing that this is DEFINITELY NOT the time to break out a lame joke, and sharing my heart with him/her as well.
Sharing a lame joke with friends whom I know will respond in exactly the way I expect.
Receiving packages from home and opening them to find Malaysian delicacies and useful stuff I didn't know I'd forgotten to bring.
Going to SNL at ECF..so far, there's nothing like that here yet, though I hope that's about to change!
Going out with ppl I know for games I like - Jimmy and David for ping pong, Ed for badminton, Jane and the gang for tennis, Ken, Jim, Dav, Jul, Bern and Sarah for Dota!
Having a drink with Pa late at nite; him with his glass of beer, me with a glass of beer mixed with Sprite cos I can't stand the taste..and just chatting.
Playing Scrabble, flying kites, playing tennis or Uno with Ray/Caroline...right before one of us spoils the mood of the game:-)
Going for a movie that I REALLY want to watch, the anticipation as we queue up for the tickets of LOTR, Matrix and Star Wars.. and discussing the movie over dinner/supper later.
Embarking on a project with a group of like-minded friends; whether it's playing in a youth band, or organizing a tennis practice to train for a competition, or discussion for Christmas with Christian Fellowship.
Leaving for a holiday with friends, just when everyone's in a good mood and enjoying themselves, till late at night when everyone's in the same room and the excited talk turns into sober sharing, and you see a side of ppl that you never knew before.
Waiting to get home and pop the latest Hillsongs/Planetshakers/United LIVE cd into the laptop..sadly, nowadays the wait is better than what happens after...
Coming up with a good idea for a video, having all the photos and clips I need, and a whole day free to tweak and edit, and finally, showing it to the ppl I meant it for.
Waiting to go for a really, really BIG dinner, a buffet at the resort in Cyberjaya being the one that stand out in my mind, on a really, really empty stomach.
Watching movie spoofs, and reading parodies of famous books, the good ones at least, are really good.
Getting to know someone and sharing time with him/her and finding out she's growing closer to God as a result.
Having a friend I can rely on to chat about anything, at all times, and punch when I'm frustrated, and whom I can rely on to build me up though it involves squeezing me down to size.
Coming up with something to blog about after thinking and thinking and thinking...
WHO KILLED KENNY???
Saturday, September 10, 2005
Service above self....
So many references to service, so when I was asked to define how a servant should act, I did so without hesitation : A servant is someone who takes orders and obeys them without question.
Well, turns out I was wrong on both counts.
According to Jeremiah 18, a servant has to be moldable and willing to remain in the potter's hand. In other words, I'm not supposed to merely take orders and obey them. Instead, I'm supposed to relate to God and allow my life to be adjusted to Him, so that He can accomplish His WILL thru me. The tough part, the part where I have to respond, is to constantly keep close to Him, and allow my life to be changed by what I see, not changing my life to keep my wants in the picture. It's different from the picture I normally have of a servant DOING STUFF. It's about seeing where God is, and going there.
"Whoever serves me must follow me. Where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me." John 12:26
What do you think?