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Monday, May 30, 2011

Live by the Spirit, Live in Freedom

I did rock-climbing for the first time last Saturday. Rock-climbing was touted as an extreme sport by many, yet so many climbers have enjoyed doing it. I thought it was rather boring because things are so still. I am one who would rather dance or swim, if you know what I mean; I like to have more than one thing on the move. Parenting is like that in many ways isn't it?

Would parenting be an extreme sport to you? Or would it be a tad toooo boring?

It is easy to lose our focus when we have 101 things on our plate. Or too much 'time' on hands.

Most of our 24-hours feels like 12-hours. We constantly live on the edge of time poverty. Truth is, we are either preoccupied with something that does not keep step with the holy spirit or fall to the other extreme; having too much 'time' on hands. Having "idle" time on hand means we are not able to prioritize what is urgent.

New American Standard Bible (©1995)
If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.

I cannot give a fuller explanation of the above scripture then what John Piper writes here at Desiring God Ministries

Remember, "flesh" is the old, ordinary human nature that does not relish the things of God and prefers to get satisfaction from independence, power, prestige and worldly pleasures. When we "walk by the Spirit" we are not controlled by those drives."
Parents, especially are often driven mad by the crazy schedules or tantrums of their little ones, and particularly little ones because they are not able to articulate their frustrations, sadness or fear. I often hear parents say " I think I am even more stressed at home then when I am out without my kids". Hence, it was often taken for granted that because many thinks it is less stressful at home, then that must be the way it should be. Or it was often heard that "since others experienced the same kind of stress, then it must be common". What a lie we have bought ourselves into!

The Bible exhorts parents to be teachers of their children at home. Proverbs 6:20 "My child, keep your father's commandment, and do not forsake your mother's teaching..."

It talks of parents being able to discipline their children. Proverbs 13:24 "Those who spare the rod hate their children, but those who love them are diligent to discipline them."

It exhorts women to be the builder of her house. Proverbs 14:1 "The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands."

This verse talks about freedom in the spirit and release from law. "Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom" (2 Corinthians 3:17). I have found that once I understood my role as given by the scriptures, I am able to focus on being the teacher that I am called, a parent who loved enough to discipline, and a wife who must build my family.
You are able to let the holy spirit work in you so much that you experience freedom in doing what you do.
Because of our God-given role we use our time to honour our calling, not given into flesh by squandering our time to do 'something else". We have every right to tell that "something else" to take a back seat if our primary role is not fulfilled. INVESTING in growing and being equipped in our role will directly impact who we are and who we are serving; namely our children, our family and the larger community God has placed us in (the church, the mission field).

Being able to GIVE UP "something else" is also needful in order that we create time and space for God to speak with us and lead us.

Whatever God has called us to do, Stand firm, know our role. We must be ready to CHOOSE to
1) Tell Off
2) Invest
3) Give Up

New American Standard Bible (©1995)
You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13

note: I have much to learn about rock climbing, but I can tell its gonna be our family's new hobby. In rock-climbing, one is required to focus and strategise where to place our hands and legs and which muscles to use in order that the climb is relatively effortless. We are not allowed to hold on to the ropes, however tempting that is.
I did find the climb rather exhilarating once I reach the top.

Anyone interested in parenting greater as well as is interested in this sport as a family, contact me. :)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

God can help you overcome

This is our God

There are things that catches us when we least expected, and sometimes we get embroiled by it.

We are surprised by ourselves. Yet God is not.

He is our overcomer, his grace is enough to help us overcome. We only need to fall into his embrace. He loves us, he will set us free.

Be it a vacuum in our hearts, or hunger, or helplessness. Only God can fill it. Nothing of the world, even the best drama serials on TV can fill it to the brim. Let God restore you.

Monday, May 16, 2011

A comfortable life or a powerful life

We don't spend enough time with the word of God. By that, I mean well-meaning followers of Christ who know the word, but never invested enough time to get it into our spirit man.

Few years ago, I was struggling to memorise Ephesians 3:20 King James Bible "Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us," I was very excited about this verse, yet I would struggled to remember the words. So tried as I did, I copied it on my yellow post-it pad and stuck it on the computer where I was working on. I tried to meditate it everyday for a week. I seldom get the exact words right, often having the (bad) habit to substitute with synonyms of sort. I wasn't quite happy with that obviously, because it could potentially dilute an intended meaning. But I would keep trying, every word that God spoke, I wrote and kept it in my heart. I would try and try again as I would to keep the words to its original translation.

It is hard work truly. But the word of God, through considerable practice can be felt so gentle yet so powerfully working in our spirit. That is when we know and we know that his word is made ALIVE in us. HIS words carry the power when we speak. We become the vessel who can bring life to others, and those who hears us.

This is power living.

I was not contented with living a comfortable life. A life that consist of food to eat, clothes to wear, a roof over my head and perhaps in the modern terms, holidaying in exotic places. I wanted a life infused with the power of the living God in me.

Is a comfortable life without storms? Many people strive for comfort and sadly Christ followers too stay stuck in a comfortable life. John 10:10 "Abundant life" has too often been misunderstood as a comfortable life. An abundant life is a life that exceeds mere happiness.

Bible Commenter
and that they might have it more abundantly; or, as the Syriac version reads, "something more abundant"; that is, than life; meaning not merely than the life of wicked men, whose blessings are curses to them; or than their own life, only in the present state of things; or than long life promised under the law to the observers of it; but even than the life Adam had in innocence, which was but a natural and moral, not a spiritual life, or that life which is hid with Christ in God; and also than that which angels live in heaven, which is the life of servants, and not of sons: or else the sense is, that Christ came that his people might have eternal life, with more abundant evidence of it than was under the former dispensation, and have stronger faith in it, and a more lively hope of it: or, as the words may be rendered, "and that they might have an abundance": besides life, might have an abundance of grace from Christ, all spiritual blessings in him now, and all fullness of joy, glory, and happiness hereafter.

A powerful life is not one without storms as evidence in Paul's life. I admire him. Seriously, I don't think I have his kind of guts. Check out his 5-star sea holiday package (Acts 27). But I sure admire his total abandonment in Jesus, hence his life although endangered was worth less than life itself. (Acts 20:24 For I do not count my life of any value to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the good news of God's grace.)

But life as it would present itself to be fraught with some highs and some lows, inevidently, some mountain top experiences and some valley lows. There is no exclusion. People everywhere desire to preserve comfort, they want to stay forever in their comfort zone. Even Kings have bad days, and beggers under the bridge would have their share of good days.

God can work through you and me in ways that are exceeding abundantly ABOVE all that we ask and think. “exceeding abundantly” is the Greek “huper-ek-perissos” which means superabundantly. More than we need. More than we can even think or dream about. (Vines Dictionary)

The word “exceeding” comes from the Greek preposition #5228 “huper” which means over and beyond, superior to, and more than is required. It is used in compound words throughout the New Testament to express God’s excessive benevolence towards His children.

I like what I discover. But happier than that, is that these are lavished upon us. It is ours. :)

Do you like to enter a room with gifts filled from the floor to the ceiling and know that they are yours? Do you like to know that someone has prepared a spread of gourmet food, or a huge garden full of flowers all for you to enjoy?

Excessive is defined as that which goes far beyond the usual, to be extraordinary, exorbitant, extravagant, overabundant, and too much.

The word “power” comes from the Greek #1411 “dunamis” which means inherent power and ability, and consistently refers to the miraculous power and anointing that flowed in Jesus ministry.

God fuels our lives through his word, visions & dreams. I was worshipping him one day when I saw a vision of his holiness among his worshippers. I asked his glory to touch my mouth. I was having ulcers and immediately the next day, I sensed healing.

I could no longer confine God to move in the ordinary spheres of mankind. The work that I do parenting, mentoring, organising activities, music - these are but natural skills sanctified. But God is a powerful God that moves where he likes... to heal (physical, emotional, mental), to restore (relationships, finances, destinies etc) to raise the dead, to make people powerful though him.

In Powerful living there is no striving. There is a sense of freedom and liberation that comes with power living. It is the anointing that God sets upon his people. And it is a gift to be received just like how we have first received God into our lives the day we made him our King, our leader and our saviour.

Have we stopped receiving him into our lives?

I don't mean to stop giving ourselves to honing our skills, but to give a semblance of godliness without its power is something we need recognise. We need to know that this is all men and none of God. We cannot give praise to God, for which that does not begin with him. So many of us doers, want more, bigger, fancier, more sophisticated stuff, being well motivated and encouraged with results, we forgot that God is the miracle worker at the front-of-stage and not at the back-stage.

We become so self-conscious, we lost our God-consciousness. We become so familiar with the workings of men, that we cannot recognise God when he does something different. Woe to us, we cannot even recognise Jesus when he is walking beside us at the road of Emmaus. Believers can be caught in such a situation! (Luke 24:13-35)

We cannot give, that which we have not received. God wants to give us exceeding, abundantly, above all that we think or ask. Have we stopped receiving?

We cannot pretend darkness is not present.

Ephesians 6:
12 - For our struggles is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against rulers, against authorities, against cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
Like it or not, we all struggle to varying degrees. Be it an irresponsibility on our part or something outside of our influence, we can and must take up the offense against which does not come from God! Do we have undue or irrational sadness, anger, fear, worries, dislike, critical, agitation, sickness, fatigue, stress? Fear can set on on in so many ways - fear of being out of control, fear of people, fear of others' opinion on us, fear of not fitting in etc. We live in a nation of fear.

Buy gold, not fear. God has something much better.

New International Version (©1984)
Rev 3:18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

1. The word "counsel" means to take counsel together, give advice, deliberate. There is only one market from which you can buy the goods Jesus offers –"from Me." The Laodiceans do not have to run to the malls of wealth in Laodicea to obtain satisfaction.
Jesus wants to do business with the Laodiceans. First, He counsels them "to buy" a certain kind of "gold," a "refined" gold of character that comes from the fires of testing. This is not a monetary transaction but a spiritual transaction, a spiritual transaction in exchange for a quality of life.

. Secondly, Jesus not only wants the Laodiceans to buy gold but He wants them to purchase "white garments" from Him. If they do this, they will not expose their nakedness to others and they will not be ashamed. Laodiceans were famous for their glossy black goat’s wool. Ignominy always comes from sin. We will not disgrace ourselves with our sin if we enter into transaction with the Lord Jesus. With clothes that Jesus gives them, they will carry a sense of modesty. This will save us a lot of pain from our disgraceful acts, from exposure while sinning. Jesus saves from behavior that brings embarrassment. These Christians will not hide their face in shame.

.The third thing that Jesus wants the church to buy is an "eye salve" that allows us to see spiritually. There was a famous medical school at Laodicea. This "eye salve" was a Phygian powder used by oculists at the temple of Asclepius. They did not need to go to occultists; they only need to go to Jesus. If we use Jesus’ salve, we will acquire true knowledge of our spiritual condition and we will see the claims of Christ to correct that condition. We need to open our eyes to spiritual truth.
(source: verse by verse commentary)

Issiah 55:1 "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.

Power living is available to those who hunger and thirst.

Sensing Power

New International Version (©1984)
Matt 22:37 Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'

Many of us sense and feel worldly sensation. We cry at Korean dramas, and laugh at comedies, yet so few of us cry when God's love overcome us or laugh when God gives us a treat.

We feel injustice when kittens are tortured but do not speak kindly when the world needs us to be salt and light.

We fall sick and sense our weakness overbearing on us physically and emotionally, but do not even recognise the power of God living and active within us.

When will we ever wake up to the fact that we have turned our sensuality over to the world?

Some of us love God with our mind, neglecting our soul. Some of us love God with our soul, neglecting our heart. Neither is complete.

God wants all of our heart, our mind and our soul.

Today, let God open our spiritual senses. Let us be so consumed by him that we are infused by him, spirit, soul, mind and our heart. Choose to live powerful lives.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011


Sometimes through so much busyness in life, we forget why we are doing what we are doing.

It is nice to slow down ... I am thankful I am never in a big rush to complete a deadline or feel compelled to 'keep busy'. This could be the deadliest trap to keep us from allowing God into our lives. God's voice is a small still voice. We've gotto let him have free reign over our lives.

Someone asked me why I have time to blog or prepare so much educational materials for my boys, or take my boys for outings, or attends conference or most recently organise contest and give freebies away! (My husband says I am spending too much time on fun things!)

Why I do what I do? My simple answer is that I am created to be a blessing. In whatever and however limitation or abundance that I have, I give because He (God) first gave. I enjoy my life immensely.

My interest however is varied. It is too trivial to list it all out. I enjoy challenges and I am not for status quo. I like to follow where the holy spirit goes, because one day in the house is better than a thousand elsewhere. I also enjoy peace and friendship, a cuppa anytime and a prayer for someone for breakthroughs. I love rejoicing where Christ has gain victory.

What I love?
I love people. God uses people to accomplish his Kingdom mission. God love people so much he restores us to our destiny. Being a SAHM gives me time to meet with people when my kids nap, or nap when my kids nap. :) I also meet people online. Who says I have no social life! haha .. ;)

I love praise & worship Sometimes I share a song I love, sometimes I share how a song changes or ministered to me. I love God's music.

I also love parenting - 4 years ago, I would have just blogged about life in general. Today, parenting topics takes up a major bulk of my blog posts. I see many parallel being a parent and a disciple-maker. Also I saw how the ideologies of the world seeped into families to rob people of the original blessing of a family, so I want to be part of the restoration work. A builder, perhaps.

I also love to move in the supernatural. No, this is no hocus pocus fairy dust I am talking about. I yearn to move like the twelve apostles, spreading the gospel, healing the sick, raising the dead, casting out demons. And like anything we are new in, there is fear. But herewith, we have to step out and exercise our faith. The time has come for such a time as this. Indeed, when we do, then we will see breakthroughs. I yearn to live powerful lives together with my family. Naturally, supernatural.

Where does my husband fit in?
My husband is the head of the household, I exist to be a helpmate (hopefully, despite my shortcomings!). He love the word of God. He may not like it if I call him a walking Bible, but he is to me. I have such short memory. I had to memorise the word by writing lines! My husband just reads it and he got it all in there. He supports all that I do, and I support him. We both move in different giftings.

So what shipwrecked situations can I share?
Surely I do! I hate getting sick! After giving birth to my second boy, my body become weak. Each year I gave birth, I would be admitted to the hospital for some reason.

The first was a surgery to remove my ovary because a cyst broke in there.

The second was for bronchitis and penuemonia resulting in Asthma. I like it that I have a choice to believe the doctor's report or the report book of the word of God. Similarly, my elder boy would also had the tendency to fall sick often, that is why I battle in prayer. Often I battle inside my prayer closet and perhaps that is where it all started. I still hate falling sick. I hate sickness. And I hate how sickness has crippled others.

We have a choice to turn a shipwrecked situation for God's glory or be sunken with the ship.

I do appreciate ...
a helping hand anytime... anyone committed to the work of restoration work, moving in power, not just in works

I don't have time for ...
slanderers, apathy , pity-parties

What I am not good at ...
well, my grammer on the blog is atrocious!! Even I can't stand it! can't cook, can't bake (anyone willing to teach me?), scared to drive (live to be driven?), can't jog (have web feet), can't stop talking (somebody stop me!!!!)