Friday, December 31, 2010

thoughts from the man born in Hippo.. bout Love.

"Love, and do what you will. If you keep silence, do it out of love. If you cry out, do it out of love. If you refrain from punishing, do it out of love."

— St. Augustine of Hippo

"What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like."


— St. Augustine of Hippo

"Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being "in love" which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two."


— St. Augustine of Hippo

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Trust in God...

Y so downcast o my soul.. put ur hope in God.... BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Don't like to say bye


Thank God for Haagen Dazs at the airport.
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Monday, December 13, 2010

a year of transitions...

feeling early in thinking through my 2010. Looked at past entries and I think the word for this year is change. from moving home to moving continent. My family is over with me and it has been an intense period. The problem with merging worlds is that it will never be the same again... it makes it harder to strike equlibrium with increasing number of variables... heart will be turned the other way with missing their presence, the nagging, questions, and even "blurness"... :( Can a person really have 2 places that they can call home, and not feel torn all the time...

To make sense of changes without being hardened. I wonder how God and his people do it.... Something that has been making me happy is the love of my little friend. She is processing my being around more and has become more attached. Sweet but yet scary. I worry I cannot live up to the expectations and the trust bestowed.... But nevertheless very sweet. On some days, she has been the sweetest thing that has happened when everything else Deutsch feels scary and overwhelming...

There might never be a tomorrow, yesterday my father was talking about what family members say to their deceased family member lying in the coffin. What the last words sound like and how we should act on the "shoulds" before it is too late.... my thought at that time was "I should be with you when you are leaving this world".. and I worry that this is something I cannot accomplish while treading in 2 worlds... Hmm.

Discernment. I ask for HEAPS of wisdom on this... Only with that can I work through the different parts of life. No what ifs, and thinking of the better way. I need to learn contentment and see God in different parts of life. So help me God.

Monday, December 06, 2010

the otherway round...

previously, saying bye to the frog at airports was no fun.

Now, i know that saying bye to the family will also be tough.

It is always a choice...

:(

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Ruth Graham In Her Own Words



a woman example... I thank God for the faithful that have gone before us who remind us that it is possible.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Thoughts from train ride...

Hello from the train back from Berlin. I am scheduled to reach home only after midnight.. Yawn… I am already tired ( at least I have my mobile internet however intermittent it is) Back from a weekend trip to Berlin, a friend was there for a “lung health” conference and I thought that it might be a good reason to catch up as well as check out the capital. I have never been to Berlin before…

I must say that all visitors to Germany should visit Berlin if they want to understand the Germans a little more. I was humbled, inspired, moved, more than in many other places in Germans (still like the dreamy Neuschwanstein though)

To be honest, I have been feeling rather frustrated with the Germans for how many rules/guidelines they have and how religious they are in following these rules… this from reading instructions of household machines in great detail(xx watt for xx type of food), the “type of soap powder to use (colored/non-colored, wool/cotton/polyester), the type of tool to use to clean ( normal rag/special rag, special tool, special mop depending on surface of floor, special pail for the special mop etc), application to school’s library ( it is not enough to be a member of the school) and the public transport schedule…These are the day to day ones, without us even going to taxes ( where each individual has a tax advisor), the language (where depending on the article of the noun, the type of verb, the clauses changes and the endings of each word changes), as well as the laws….

Suffice to say, I was dreaming about going back to the “haven” called Singapore… or to my beloved developing countries where issues are a lot more basic (we have no electricity today) where I feel more useful as an individual. The “awwww” and “wahhhh” honeymoon phase of being in Germany have passed as I hop here and back for the past 3 years… I was beginning to question if I can truly live in a place like this and if it is possible for me to contribute (make God happy). Was I perhaps just being self indulgent and naïve? Or what people call the foolishness of youth? ( haha, I have been feeling old and weary and scoffing at my own plan…) The thing that has been holding me together was remembering that my God is in control and a darling who tries his very best to deal with this ball of emotions as we deal with issues of adaptation.

I am thankful for this trip to Berlin for providing some perspective. We went for walks around both quarters (east and west), paid mandatory visits to the Mauer (wall), visited very few museums, went for a free walk and checked out flea markets (only 1 out of 3 in the guidebook was operational –keine arnung ( dunno why) ) and just hung around… For me, the highlight of the trip was the free walk! Haha. It was nice to have a glimpse of the history of Germany from its glorious days (Prussian Empire) to the consequences of World War 1 which led to World War 2, the cold war and finally how the city has been coping since the fall of the wall. The dynamism of the city is evident as walking 5 minutes provides evidences of different times in history. I like the contrast of this city, like seeing places that I have read and studied about and especially like how the people have tried to make it work…

During the walk, we came across symbols of power, reign of the Prussian Empire, Memorial of the Holocaust, a carpark lot where Hitler’s bunker lies many feet below, an old building that was built by the Nazis, a war memorial that has a sculpture, the remains of the Cold War and the Berlin Dom that was built with the intention to rival the St Peter’s Basilica. It was interesting to see what and how things were preserved. My friend had a comment about how the memorial of Hitler’s bunker was just a carpark lot with a sign and not anything more. Why did they not want to make more of it? For example, the memorial for the Jews that died cost many millions Euro and took a big plot of land in central Berlin…I had my thoughts on it but I don’t think he agreed with my thinking… I appreciate the thought process that went into these different bits of history and the irony of some of the buildings. (The Nazi building (which is not the favorite building to say the least) that used to be the Nazi’s Airforce headquarters became the Soviet headquarters (only Nazi building not destroyed) and currently houses the tax office in Berlin)

Another highlight of my trip was the Reichstag (parliament house) haha. We waited in the rain for about 1 hr to get into the building. It is architecturally quite interesting ( it was restored with a glass dom above) and also historically and politically interesting. I enjoy learning more about how ingenious the architecture of the dom was ( solar panels, mirrors to reflect natural light into the building, an air vent to let air in but not water/snow etc etc) Quite amazing.. haha.. It is also very interesting symbolically as the floor of the dom is made of glass, which meant that people debating during Parliament can look up and remember who they r doing this for ( the people – albeit most are non German tourists!)

I guess by and large, I am mostly wowed at the tenacity of the city, nation as a whole. Yes, this is an old nation and I see some merits/wisdom of its age. I am inspired at how they try to use what they have to do what they can. Even though I think that they are still a little weird, they have used their weirdness as their competitive advantage. (think German precision) At this point in time, they r one of the most stable/growing economies in Europe (perhaps even the world) and it is not something that comes cheap or easy.

I guess it is nice to be schooled by a university system that has produced thinkers that were prominent to the western world (which like it or not, influences most of the rest of the world) While I do not understand much and often feel small or intimidated that I might not be smart enough; I am currently inspired to try again…

Perhaps one day, I will be able to speak the German language fluently, but even if that doesn’t happen, I need to not be fearful and “blocked” but to just go with the flow… however convoluted the “German flow” is. To enjoy the process and not be upset with the people who tried to build the tower of Babel.

So, as I end this post (which managed to take 2.5 hrs of my time – which leave me with 2.5 more); I will try to learn from the Germans and be tenacious. As a German saying goes, everything has an end, except a sausage which has 2 ( I dun understand how its relevant but here goes)… To find a sense of humour in things that go wrong and to always be thankful.

2.5 weeks to family coming! Need to be more “put- together”. To a nice week ahead!

(Ps: the trip took longer than 5 hrs since we were stuck for some reason for 1 hour... Long train rides, not very fun... perhaps the biggest downer of the trip.. )

Thursday, November 04, 2010

of reality and fairy tales...


This is THE fav cartoon of mine.... few days ago, random friend says she will never ever let her kid watch cartoons as they instill in us the need for a prince in shining armor... Random Friend, for the record, this DVD cover does not have Prince Eric on it!!! :) It has instead a lobster and a flounder!.. I think its good to go! :)

I am at the moment in life again asking questions:
" What does it mean to love somebody u no longer trust"
" What is trust and how do you decide who to trust/not trust?"
"What does it mean to love your neighbour as yourself?" 
"How does one live confident in spite of the uncertainties that we face?"

I think perhaps the idea of growing up/maturing/aging is that we find nuances that helps us make sense of these questions... My model answer doesn't fit the mold exactly and I need to figure out what to do. It is much easier to not deal and just be sad/angry/emo/apathetic.. but i am of the mind it will come haunt me again, so better to sort it out now.

At this point in time, I am trying to not discard the fairy tales (happily ever after) and yet be a idealistic realist... Somewhere somehow, I will need to remember that His strength is made perfect in my weakness...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

perhaps...

happiness and sadness are not the end products... its not something to pursue  or something to consider how to get out of...  they r by products and by obsessing, we loose the moment of happiness and dwell in the sadness. it doesnt make it anybetter.

I need to be more task oriented like my mother, and my frog... paint the walls of the corridor, throw out the junk and start life proper here. no procrastinating and emo-ing ard...

Monday, October 25, 2010

money...

hello from student peirong.

Sigh. i am trying to not be traumatized at my finanical state. Starting up requires all my money and that has not been fun to say the least. :(

i hope that things will become better and in the meantime, to trust and not fret... becos fretting only leads to evil. :(

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The difference between peirong n germany....

Hello from the train to meet a bestie. Currently feelin bummed as I missed my train n will henceforth b one hr late:(

I start my 4 week here in germs today n it has been a struggle. Haha I m recently told I see the disaster before the silver lining.... True but if it is my disposition, I can only accept n try to not let it rule me. Good luck...

Anyway struggle primarily becos we r very different in make up hahaha. Some obvious one for now

Germs are the epitome of order n I m sorry to say not... From readin intently the instructions when operating the microwave to the specific articles used to describe objects which permeates through the whole entire language. There is a way of doing things that one needs to follow else face dire consequences... Improvisation is not Something to be appreciated.

Timeliness. To say the least I m not one who does very well with flowing the clock to the dot and this has got me into too much trouble . Like today I didn't know that trams from my apartment which usually leaves every 10 mins leave twice on Sundays... :( this has caused me to be 1 hr late or to spend 59 sgd more to catch a faster train.... Sighhhhh

Haha the list continues with thoughts on directness vs indirectness, pushiness vs passive aggression. How do I stay me in the good beautiful that god created n not feel so culturally different. I need to change becos this age old machine of order will not change for me. To pick the desirable traits n to not those just to fit in....

I have now made q habit o smiling at ppl who r curious bat me. It's fun to see their reaction....
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Sunday, October 10, 2010

identity.

for a while now, i have been thinking about the idea of "identity" and its role to an individual. in fact, my dissertation revolves around the idea of identity and its role to the wider organization....

i know that the identity that will remain with me forever and ever is " a child of God". Everything else pales in comparison. During this time of transition, while not understanding the language, feeling abandoned by my work etc,... I want to remember that as a Child of God, I am blessed with others who dearly love me... I am blessed with the solid stone on which I stand... as so because of this. I will not need to fear...

Thank you for all the admin work that I had to do in the first week... To a better 2nd week in Germany. Cheers!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

heartbroken

to really love people is to make self vulnerable... which leaves the likely possibility of hearbroken-ness

I still feel blindsided and unfairly treated. I need all the grace and joy to do the right thing.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

To be thankful

i m eternally thankful for my earthly father who has been very sweet hearing my cries and pains these weeks. This has been one of the few highlights of a week filled with cares, anxieties and just separation blues.

I will not trade him for anything and will miss him when i am many thousand miles away. He has made it easier for me to understand the love of my heavenly father.

When I was younger, only 3 things will get me into trouble: being rude, not sitting properly and lying. This meant I do not get into trouble often with him and end up with more time of just bonding....

In the midst of the turmoil in my lil life, I will remember that like my earthly father who will not give me a snake when I ask for bread (unless it is a high fibre snake), so will my heavenly father be there and give me good gifts.

Trust and Obey.

Monday, September 20, 2010

love in action

What is love in an organization

How do u love people in salaries, titles, while trying to be just. m i really being just

How do i do justice to all?

I need wisdom and peace and strength so I wont crumble.. :(

Saturday, September 18, 2010

note to self...

This was taken while on a "retreat" to Thailand a few years back.. I read somewhere about sunflowers outside of Bangkok during December and wanted to go check it out.. We were stationed in Ayutthaya and took a bus to a place that I had thot the sunflowers were at.... after what was a very long bus ride, we found out that the flowers were actually outside the town and would cost $$ if we would want to go to it via taxi/tuk tuk.... this after I drew my version of the sunflower since they had no clue what I was going on about. we were told that we could take the train to a neighboring town and hope for better luck there. :) Of course, the train ride to the station took twice as long and that meant only 1 hr left to see the flowers before heading back to "home"...

A man came up to us while we were at the train station and asked us where we wanted to go. I showed him my map and negotiated for the price . My friend, I and the motorcycle driver took off to this place where he thought I had wanted to go... Of course, his bike stalled in the middle of a big road and I prayed so hard to stay safe.. After taking a few wrong turns, he realised where we wanted to go and laughed at our sheer silliness. This girl has gone around the world looking for this!?! He did not believe that tourists would pay money to see a "crop" grown for $$. When we finally reached there, I had time to snap only a few photos before having to come back to start my very looong ride baack.

When did i lose this sense of adventure and fun? When was the fastest way to the destination more important than enjoying the ride. Sometime between yesterday and today, I grew up and became immersed in paperwork and the efficient thing to do... I want to remember to spend the effort just because it makes me happy. I want to remember that Nature is beautiful and not something to be taken for granted... Finally, I want to not feel old but to be thankful for each and every experience in my life.

Amen and good night world!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What i want to do...


Make God smile! Tired hippo i feel like.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

learning to be still

I went for a walk today and sat by the nature reserve to "paint". i wanted a legitimate reason to be out in nature to soak in the breeze, the blue skies, green trees and just be out there....

This has been a very difficult week. I think the reality of going to germany is becoming real, yet at the same time, work has been intensely stressful. I dun think it has been this stressful in work for a while. This together is a very trying time. I spend my waking hours working and due to the emotional upheaval of leaving, doing work takes a lot longer... the 2 together makes a powerful concoction... I have found myself in tears too many times this week and also "short' in temperment.... This in turn makes me feel more frustrated with myself and lead others to get upset with me which of course makes me feel even worst...  ( ok, I think u get the point of the downward spiral....did I say i was also trying very hard to not fall sick again?)

I need to remember a few facts in this time and to cling very tight to them.

1) God is faithful and beautiful. Nature is the evidence of the beauty of his work and also his faithfulness.

2) He will not give me more than I can bear... Yes it is overwhelming but I will overcome becos his strength is made perfect in my weakness.. (good i am weak now :))

3) If this is what he wants me to do, he has gone before me and has prepared it for me...

4) He who began a good work is faithful and just to complete it.

Reminds me a little of what I was looking at while "painting".. Ripples and a stone. The ripples come and go but the stone anchored deep will not be moved by the ripples and can continue to stay put. haha. a long shot but a reminder for me.

this is but a season and this to shall pass... stay calm o my soul. the Lord my God is in control.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

in peirong's world


- People will not wear shoes... if they dont want too. I find it hard to find a pair of shoes i like that is not too small, too pricey or matches with anything else. someone just stole a pair of shoes from outside my door!

- People will be sincere .. I dont want to deal with flaky people who pretend to be nice just to keep up appearances

- Love will prevail, instead of financial budgets, politics, reasoning, or pure spite... What does this thing called love look like?

- there will be no administration to be done. I am really quite crap at it. :( Still figuring this out for Germany.

- people are nice... not malicious, mean, or just angry.

but this is not peirong's world.. so need all the grace and patience...

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

a way to end my break...

A picture to remind me to do what i like to do. To not be worried about perfection but to just do it .. just because it makes me happy.

A picture to remind me that the God who made the heavens and the earth in all its glories, had time to make it beautiful... for me.

A picture to remind me that I am His beloved in this big bad world.. (ok, not big and bad but fallen) . The only thing i can do is to be me and to remember that i am loved.

Good night world and with this i end my small break and begin the final lap to my move to Deustchland... ( my dear lil sis, pls love me still?)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Psalm 121


Psalm 121

A song of ascents.

I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD watches over you— the LORD is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

even in my darkest night.. my life will shine for you.

Song on repeat as I try to sleep. Hopefully the Big Friendly Giant (from Roald Dahl) will be visiting tonight to send me a very good dream.

Good night world. I am thankful today for virtual friends from around the world that remind me that I am loved and not alone....

Monday, August 16, 2010

5 years...

Just crossed the 5 yr mark in my work place. I am SO PROUD OF MYSELF! haha. :) Though i am probably somebody that needs a lot of push to make a move.. But anyway. Proud of self and pats back!

Something that I have been thinking about as we go through the struggles at work, I have been thinking about this looks like in an organization.
"Love must be sincere, Hate what is evil, cling to what is good."  Romans 12:9
Perhaps working in a Christian NGO whose aim is in the welfare of Children makes the expectations to love higher and with that, the realities of failure. With restructuring, decision making, etc; how is one supposed to love? With sincerity? Difficult to hate the evil and love the person... and with all that to be sincere.

Many thoughts, many struggles. I want to love.... hope to have wisdom on what this means.

Happy 5 yrs of working :)

Monday, August 09, 2010

My Singapore My Home

It's Singapore's Birthday... Watching the National Day Parade with my dad. Having fun.. :) This reminds me of how it was like when I was young, sitting down together as a family watching the parade...


Hehe. I think, with my travels around... I am more grateful to my little country. It has provided me with opportunities that I would not otherwise have... hehe. I remember "hating" NJ's National day fanfare... i think people need to appreciate for themselves the beauty of our country, being "forced" to learn National Education is not going to make me Patriotic... :) Many more thoughts but Happy Birthday Singapore.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

things working out...

Little by little one step at a time.. i think they are! woot! off to the embassy tomorrow again! :)

Sunday, August 01, 2010

the best gift...

Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.     Matthew 13:45-46
A few years ago, while I was visiting a church during my travel, there was a pastor who was giving a sermon on this with a Children's bible.. she challenged us to think about whether we did indeed view God as something that is worth everything else...

Yesterday, I assisted in an interview and the candidate was one who would have a significant paycut if she decided to take up the job. She talked about praying about it and deciding to continue with the recruitment process since every good thing has a price. And if believed that this was from God, there would be a price tag involved...

A cost attached to everything. Today I felt like I came into contact again with this cost, abeit in a strange way. Met a friend from a past life while having lunch with my family. It was interesting as it took a split second before recognition. Not sure why I am affected. Perhaps because it was a little awkward, perhaps because I could be having a kid. (HAH) or perhaps i miss the me of yesterdays...

Whatever happened to the once-upon-a-time innocence, sweet young thing... I remember the day i made the decision, and remember being challenged as to what was more important to me....I remember telling the big creator my cares and parking my worries with him. Today, while feeling a little cognitive dissonance with the costs involved, I need to remember that my worries were unfounded. He is happy now and has what he always wanted. I need to remember that there is a faithful creator out there whose kingdom is like a pearl, and that all costs, is worth the amount.

I pray for continued courage to not look back at what ifs, and wonder about decisions made.. instead to focus on the present and the future, to remember that the creator makes everything beautiful in his time.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Lost in translation.


Had moments which reminded me of this movie...

Monday, July 26, 2010

thinking in chinese.

觉得感慨万端。 要会感恩,知足。

Decisions Decisions Decisions

Needing to make decisions soon. I still dunno what I will decide. Praying for wisdom and discernment...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Kampuchea...

Back from Cambodia. Feel proud about the progress that they have made. To conclude my trip, I went to what was my favorite cafe the last time I was there. Again feeling thankful for the experiences that I am afforded... Thank you Jesus.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

remedy from the mean reds


instead of looking out at the tiffany's window, I shall do what class 95 says, think of 3 things that make you smile.

1) Taking a tuk tuk with big boxes during peak hour traffic, transporting material from office to hotel

2) A colleague who took the extra mile to bring me to collect my luggage before sending me back to my hotel.

3) Having drinks with my friends, just laughing at cross cultural differences and to not be on guard...

keeping fingers crossed for tomorrow!

ps: dialogue regarding meanreds:



Holly Golightly: You know those days when you get the mean reds?

Paul Varjak: The mean reds. You mean like the blues?

Holly Golightly: No. The blues are because you're getting fat, and maybe it's been raining too long. You're just sad, that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid, and you don't know what you're afraid of. Do you ever get that feeling?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

GLEE - Season Finale Performance - "Over the Rainbow"

:) starting to appreciate glee...

A tribute to a special friend...

There are days when you know you are touched by one of God's soldier, somebody who has faith, courage, and deep love in her heart. I met one such person when I was in Myanmar... Today was her last day of work, a short post as a tribute to her...


Sisi, a girl my age if not slightly younger. I first met her when I was in the Philippines and she was the representative of WV Myanmar to this course. A quiet and sweet girl...

In my last trip to Myanmar, i have grown to have a new found respect for her. From the way she deals with difficult situations, to her family situation. I am in awe that she still knows that God has a plan for her. that He is sovereign.

I am thankful for being provided with the opportunity to pray with her, to be a friend to her and for her genuine love. May God continue to pray and keep her, and to honor her in all that does.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Unwavering Intensity of Desire

I am haunted by the stories of people who make the summit of Everest. Such incredible devotion is required, such total focus of body, soul, and spirit. Reaching the top of the world's tallest mountain becomes for those who try the central driving force of their lives. The goal is so remarkable and the journey so uncertain. Many climbers have been lost on the mountain. Those who reach the summit and return safely are among a rare and elite group of mountaineers in the world. Why do they do it? How do they do it?

John Krakauer recounted the desperate tale of the ill-fated '96 expedition in his book Into Thin Air: "There were many, many fine reasons not to go, but attempting to climb Everest is an intrinsically irrational act-a triumph of desire over sensibility." It is a feat begun in desire that can be accomplished only through desire. Krakauer explained how one of his climbing partners attained the summit: "Yasuko had been propelled up the mountain by the unwavering intensity of her desire.
Desire-it's the only way you will ever make it. Take marriage, for instance. Or singleness. Either makes for a far more difficult and arduous ascent than Everest, in large part because it does not seem so. The struggles are not heightened and focused into one month of do or die; rather, they stretch on across a lifetime. So it is with any act of faith or of hope-anything, in other words, that makes a life worth living. How can we possibly sustain such an intrinsically irrational act as love if we've killed our desire?
excerpt from Devotions of Ransomed Heart ministries

Thursday, July 08, 2010

NDP 2010 Theme Song - Song for Singapore (MTV)



:) Almost as good as "this is my country, this is my flag".. an ode to Singapore :)

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Being Happy

to wear mismatched clothes, swing as high as possible and enjoy the ride....
to always be child like and to shrug off the old hag at the back of my shoulder!!!

ps: this was taken during my birthday this year,.. and frog thinks i look mentally disabled in this foto.. sigh. :s

Monday, July 05, 2010

Pre Monday blues...

Why must my weekend end?

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Thoughts when dealing with my "ailing body"

Body is not happy :( Between tummy pains, feeling weak and fevers...

I am reminded that. I am weak, a vessel, cannot do everything.... and yes, His strength is made perfect in my weakness.

So, will try to just let his strength work through...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

changing skin. staying true.

Just discovered the "designer template" function on blogger and been playing with it. I find it a scary task to find something that represents me.I have kept this blog relatively low key becos this is how i want to keep myself accountable...not worrying about offending anybody while thinking through my thoughts. Anyway. something is better than nthg. Here is to my new blog skin!

Back from Myanmar. This has been quite an experience. I continue to feel humbled about how I am provided the opportunity to this exposure. Myanmar is quite interesting. It used to be the most developed country in South East Asia and rumor has it that our Minister Mentor had wanted to study there. Now, I hear stories of the university being moved out of Yangon, at least a bridge away to prevent student rebellion. The computer science department is by Paddy Fields... :) very strategic indeed.

It is difficult to see a country regress. I am always a little negative about how our govt is cut throat with Singapore's progress. Perhaps becos of the neighboring states, the idea of progress becomes a lot more important.. is the opposite of regression, progress? (sounds logical). When does progress becomes bad and when is it okie to just be content.

Many more thoughts but processed on my plane flight back on a "bag for vomit". haha. I dunno wat that is called. the air sickness bag.. :)

Glad to be home. taking a break b4 work calleth again. I feel like a dwarf in Snow White... hai hoo hai hoo. its off to work we go. :)

Monday, June 21, 2010

back at home...

Back from Myanmar. :)

Not feeling tip top.

But yes, will talk more soon. In the meantime. Hello World...

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Carrie Underwood - I'll Stand by You (American Idol Finale)



Feeling blue. Almost letting the emotions get the better of me. Why so downcast my soul. My God is victorious and he loves me for me.

:( Sitting in the office, crying and reviewing policies. Macht kein spass.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

only a pawn in his game... (Bob Dylan)

Back in Singapore. (only for 4 nights) I started the unpacking in my new place but no, its no way near done. haha. I don't like this pack/unpack... but this is to be done. my sister was sweet today and tried to mother me. quite funny.

I am back from Dhaka after a 9 day stint.While there, life is very intense and revolves pretty much around work, sleep, eat, sleep, work, eat, sleep, work. well, you get the point. I hope that what I do brings some value to the people there, and I will not just be one of the many that comes and goes and nothing comes out of it.

Some thoughts as I wait for my hair to dry and then sleep.

As per my post below, I have been feeling pretty much like a "pawn". Seeing the "evil", "ugly", the "mgmt decisions" in different things and feeling weary that I am just a little thing that cannot influence but rather the one who does it, the overwhelming feeling of too much. I think that God was good in a very sweet way. Gentle and sweet. Ravi (HR director in Bangladesh I worked with) brought me to a pentecostal service in one of Dhaka's oldest church building,the Armenian Church.

This was quite an interesting building, probably one of the oldest in Dhaka. We drove through traffic and suddenly, went into a side street and we arrived! haha, it was quite interesting as it was definitely not situated in a "safe expat" area. We were welcomed by the overwhelming smell of the stagnant drain. When entering the hall, it was interesting with the mix of Bangla and the Christian culture around the altar.

The Ecumenical Church of Dhaka had invited the Taize Brothers to lead us in singing of some choruses. The choruses are somewhat like gregorian chants, not very much melody and they repeat themselves many (many) times. "eg: Let us wait upon the Lord, for his good, let us wait upon the Lord, for he is God" (x5) At one point in time,while we were singing, the muslim prayers suddenly blasted from the loudspeakers of the mosque just beside us. Quite funny, as though we were both competing for attention from the Gods! To add to this symphony, the swallows around us started to "sing" as well. It was a very interesting service. I very much enjoyed the "life"...

The preacher began his sermon with the Bob Dylan Song's, "Only a pawn in his game" and how we can sometimes feel like that. He ends the sermon telling us that, no we are not pawns, and yes, God is sovereign. Not some other evil force out there. That was a good timely reminder.

During the small group meeting on another occasion, the devotions was taken from possibly the most well known verse in Micah. about our requirement " to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God". It was an interesting perspective I have not considered, looking at the verbs, "Act, Love and Walk".

We are not called to love the ideal of Justice, but rather to do it. In the face of great injustice, to not give up but to keep at acting justly.

While acting justly, we are called to not become bitter of those who receive mercy, but rather to love mercy, the mercy/grace that results in what might be undeserved, if the benchmark was in justice.
.....
and finally to remember that we are not going to always do the right thing, and it is only with walking with our God humbly do we stand a chance.

Thank you Lord for this reminder. You know how much I wish to hear from you.while it is easier to hear/feel the ground shaking, mountain top -esque type of experince,it is through these quiet whispers that reminds me of your presence. Thank you for reminding me that it is ok to be the little person. however little, you are here n u make all things beautiful.

good night world. God loves.. very much.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

bein christian

I visited the Vatican a few weeks ago, saw the Pieta carved by Michaengelo, something I have been wanting to do. There is something about how that speaks to the soul, reminds me of the extent of his suffering, and what he did for me. The wonder of His love. There is a flip side to that as well. Walking around Rome and within the Vatican city, there were so many statues monuments funded by the pope (look for the crown and the keys) There were many of such. Granted that there has been many popes, the excessive statues, paintings, works,… I can understand how that leads to the reformation.

Over dinner in a pizzeria, we were discussing European history as well as Church History. I find it difficult that church history was strongly intertwined with politics, and how power was sometimes the reason to do things….

I am currently in Bangladesh. One of the things I am doing, interviewing for a senior position.

Interview “How do u maintain spirituality in your leadership and day to day life”
Candidate “It all starts with Sunday School, I remember the lessons, also I pray, do family prayer and serve in Church”

I almost cannot hear answers like these anymore. When in the developing field like Bangladesh where more than 90% are Muslims, this gives the 10% Christian a sense of entitlement that they should get jobs from Christian agencies. Working in YMCA, Christian Development Aid, etc and because of that, they want to work for world vision becos of our Christian identity.

When asked about their professional experience, they say that they are happy to learn. No mention about their past experiences/qualifications etc. Coupled to my angst with this is that people who say that they like working in a Christian organization, believes in God etc, are the same people who do really mean, evil things, and yet on the surface act completely angelic.

My mother said once that working in a church/Christian context gives u a faith crisis, ie one needs to have a strong faith. It is very easy to get disappointed with people and not see the hand of God involved. I am currently struggling with being proud of my faith. Not becos I am ashamed of my God, but more becos of the “evil” it has seem to have done.

My sovereign God. I think He has way more faith in mankind that I do have for mankind. Worried bout my future, my boss still thinks I am ruining my life… I know that the only way things r going to happen is through his plan… teach me Lord to trust n obey…

Saturday, May 22, 2010

some days when I want to hide



I need to pack. Need to leave the country in bout 6 hrs but I have not packed! I am exhausted and I just want to hide away from the world. The equivalent of the security blanket/sucking my thumb would be to close my room door, have some time of my own, hug my hippo and sleep. Not care about emotions of anybody and just sleep. I wished I was a bit more like my packing friend who packs when she is stress. I just pretend it doesnt exist... bleah.

I spent an enjoyable time with the girls at crystal jade. Reminded of the need for some constancy. Enjoyed friends that stay during seasons of life. Today somebody was talking bout how she feels that some of her friends r only for that season and then, it will be somebody else. While I agree to a certain point, I like the concept of being here for you all the time, the type of love that never leaves nor forsakes. A constancy.

Spent the last week in 4 different beds. Ironic but I will be spending the most time on a bed in Bangladesh. Hmmm... :) Regarding beds, my mother just bought new beds for all! ... Now to make some time to sleep on it.

I am ever so thankful for God being the consistency in my life of change...

Bye Singapore, off to Dhaka for a weeek!

Friday, May 21, 2010

note to self

pretending the work doesnt exist doesnt make it go away

sigh... doing payback time now :(

Thursday, May 20, 2010

thank u lord.

I need to learn to be thankful. To remember that my big God is watching my ways, that he has got my back. Back from Europe. Many different thoughts. Easy to lose sight of the big picture in light of many distractions.

Putting an email i received to remind me to be thankful.

Dear Mrs. Pei Rong,

I just received your documents from the Chairmann of the Doctoral Committee. You are accepted as a doctoral student.

To make everything ready I need to now which is you forename und which is your surname.

Thank you for your replay.

Best wishes

Saturday, May 08, 2010

good night world

there are days when the only little act of rebellion that can be done is in not sleeping at the right time. yes i will surely regret it tmr.

1. I had a nice birthday. thank u to all who wished me

2. I passed my exam. i completely freaked out but said a prayer while enroute. its nice to feel passionate bout the subject discussed " can u somehow try to link Niebuhr's theology to Paul???"

3. Thinking about the future. I need to continue to remember that my big big God holds my future. I am a little scared. of everything really. haha. yes thats me when i am not trying. To be brave and bold

4. I really dont want to start work!!! :)

5. Good night world. I know God loves!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Being Stewards of our lives

I wonder what that means. Perhaps if I knew, I could write a book and earn heaps of money. A self help book with that as the title.

Yes, with the death of somebody, we are always reminded to live better, fuller lives. I always think that when I am a grandmother, I need to have stories to tell my grandkids, to inspire them to live their lives, that they will listen and not be too bored. :) So with such an attitude, i have lived the past years of my life but gradually realised that I am not going to be a grandmother in the next 2 years. There is no point in killing myself and I should learn to live each day for itself...

Anyway, some rambles as I refuse to work or study...

2 of my closer friends have tied the knot. 1 I helped out in,almost cried when I saw walking towards the altar... The other, I know married a man who will love her forever, whom she will take care of for the rest of their lives! hehe. I am very proud of them both for being married.... though I have been over thinking what marriage means. I sometimes think that gone are the days when people marry each other becos they are in love. Suddenly, it is about many things. Or maybe because I made it so. I like the idea of God having told us what to do, tho i know that he has given us free will too. All this makes it very complicated!

I wonder what makes a man worth marrying and if it is ok if I marry one because I love him. I love that he and I have common interests in development work, and I do not have to defend my life choices to him. But I have not had the other things sorted out. does this then make me not a good steward??

I went to a meeting with an insurance agent a few days ago and it has been very interesting. The idea of financial responsibility, the idea of risk and what my level of risk is. I am still thinking about how this links to God having my future in His hand.

Insurance girl asks "So, when you are sick, how much do you think you need everymonth to keep your lifestyle? What is your risk appetite,you need to think about permanent Disability, Term Life, Medical Bills etc etc."

I guess the reason I ask is because I know that I am making a decision that is not financially wise, at least for now. I still do not know what I will do for money once school starts, and how I can fly back here and there. My boss thinks I am nuts still and is currently asking me what about Mongolia? :)

What does it mean to be a good steward? To know that much has been given to me, hence much is expected. I have been thinking about faith recently. What that means and how there is an element of RISK. Does this coincide with my thoughts? I just hope I am not risking for the wrong things....

Ok, may all who come behind us find us faithful...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Scatter Brain


Help me Lord becos I have a million thoughts and I cannot do the task ahead of me.

Thinking of.

- The wonder of his love. In the context of Marriage, and how Christ is the groom and the church, his bride. Feels quite amazing, i cannot comprehend. How he uses the model of 2 separate individuals to express his love. Not finished thinking about it so it lingers to bug me.

- The purpose of a family. Saddened this week by a family member. Cannot sleep. Feels dumb to be this upset. over a seemingly small issue. What is a family unit? For support, for admonition, for the best and worst of a person.

- Dynamics at work. I am trying to produce a document that is supposed to make people happy. happy to apprpove something that feels a lot. I dunno, I feel very stuck thinking bout the politics involved. I don't know what the best thing to do is. I need to focus. instead of spacing out non stop!

- My studies. I hope i am not messing up my life! haha. so drama. :( I am going for an exam soon and hopes to do fine. need to study, need to focus. but soo scattered. need to consolidate.

-Life, death, and everything in between.

- And every other random thought that shoots through my mind. Love, what ifs, what nots...

sigh. I need to focus... Need toooooo

Will try again!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The will to make it so...

Our vision for every child, life in all its fullness
Our prayer for every heart, the will to make it so


This is the vision statement for WV, place where I am working. For the longest time, I understood the first part of it, but never quite understand the 2nd part. "the will to make it so.. how and why do we need to pray for it?

I think this is perhaps one of the biggest lessons in real life. That knowing all the textbook knowledge, being good at what one does, etc, sometimes is not enough, there is a BIG political mountain to be pushed and it is very important to be able to influence this process.

Watching the passing of the health care bill has been fascinating. I know there are no real consequences to me but the amount of politics involved to get to this point has been staggering. The "stick", "carrot", emotional blackmail, logical arguments... for everyone person who wants this, at least another would be against it...

How hard it is to stick to a course of action. So much easier to pander and let it slide. When a supervisor shoots down an idea, or when the senior management asks for reworking the 20th time... It takes a lot of will to want to look at it again,to mke the necessary changes. It almost feels like hitting one's head on the wall...

I am reminded about Romans and how suffering produces perseverance, which produces character and finaly the will of God. I am also reminded about God not being slow in keeping his promises.

The will to make it so, while it is much easier to give up on life, give up on the difficult things around, i pray that i will continue to have the tenacity to make things happen..

(Blogging in the midst of studying for exams, packing my little room and working... all this while being sick!)

Monday, March 15, 2010

these three remain

And now these three remain, faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love...

Faith in the almighty - leading to having hope for the future - allowing me to love the people ard. Difficult to keep the flow of this going. to translate my faith to hope and finally to love.

The past weeks have seen me struggling to keep my hope alive. Hope in a good future, hope in the people around me, in the circumstances. With an eeyore personality, it is much easier to be despondent and to give up. much harder to cling to hope. to the good and to believe in a good future.

But that I must fight to do. Because without hope, I cannot love. Without hope, I have not really believed in my God. I do not have the faith in what he called me to do. I do not have the strength or the audacity to love: To put myself out on the line again or to be vulnerable; To accept the consequences of love and not become resentful.

I need your love to help my unbelief, so that I can love you with all my soul,strength, mind.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Loving Those Who Hate

This is in memory of the 5 Pakistani WV staff who were shot while in their line of duty. The excerpt below is taken from the president of WV US. The biggest donor to the WV partnership.

I still struggle to understand what kind of twisted worldview allows for the casual killing of so many innocent people for any reason. Ironically, on Tuesday, just as these attacks were occurring, I was making my final report for the President’s Council on Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships in Washington, D.C., to administration officials. In describing the NGO community I noted that “not insignificant is the reality that each year, our community of aid workers loses staff members to violence”—something very few other non-profits ever face. The next day, after the tragedy became public, President Barack Obama has also passed along his condolences to us through his senior staffers.

I returned to Seattle Wednesday and immediately walked into our weekly chapel, which had been quickly re-purposed as a prayer meeting for our staff in Pakistan and the families of our fallen coworkers. Words do not express the shock and horror of what happened. We live in perilous times, and yet all of us at World Vision believe that our work offers a powerful alternative to violence and hatred. Jesus’ simple command to “love our neighbors as ourselves,” continues to motivate us. In the end, love will win more battles than violence, and so we continue our work to love our neighbors—even those who choose to hate us.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

The Lord of My emotions

My mother has been very interested in this deliverance and healing arean since we were rather young. She saw how that was very real, the spiritual realm and how decisions made in life had real life consequences. I remember going for seminars about these, she wanted us to know more and felt that the best way forward was for us to attend these seminars. In one of these events, we were introduced to the Lordship prayer. It basically affirmed God as the Lord of the spirit, mind and soul (all different parts that make up a person)

One of the things that was always difficult but yet I try very hard to mean what I say is asking God to be the Lord of my emotions. Yes, I am a very emotional young lady. Some people don't believe when I tell them I have a melancholic side even... The emotions is what I think is my Achilles heel, but even more. something that can be great because I can feel people's emotions. But also really bad when it gets to me. Some people think that it can be turned off, or that it is a point of weakness or an indulgence that should not be considered. but i think that if I dont face up to it, I cannot be the whole me. But will always be a part of me, since it is me.

Haha, ok, back to the point... Lord being the Lord of my emotions. Some observations:

1) He doesnt take away the sucky parts. He still allows me to feel intense pain, emos etc. However, I know that this too shall pass and that feeling sad doesnt mean I do not have a God who loves me.

2) He continues to make me emotional - I dont think I have become less emotional since asking him to be Lord. I think that I have a slightly better grip instead of dwelling in these emotions....

So yup. A process to make me a better person. Help me to remember that you are faithful even when I am not. Thank you for being my God.

Monday, March 01, 2010

a constant reminder of my motivation.... so help me Lord.

The deeds of men are only discerned by the root of charity. For many things may be done that have a good appearance, and yet proceed not from the root of charity. For thorns also have flowers: some actions truly seem rough, seem savage; howbeit they are done for discipline at the bidding of charity.

Once for all, then, a short precept is given thee: Love, and do what thou wilt: whether thou hold thy peace, through love hold thy peace; whether thou cry out, through love cry out; whether thou correct, through love correct; whether thou spare, through love do thou spare: let the root of love be within, of this root can nothing spring but what is good.”

(Homily VII, paragraph 8 St Augustine)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

sentiments

creeping age

running time

to make the best of every minute given... it is a gift.

Friday, February 19, 2010

a little melting pot

Had dinner at Bedok food centre, sat in a table with a an australian and a singaporean. Went to do a manicure below a Hdb and the lady helping me was from Vietnam. On my way home on a train, I was surrounded by Indians, chinese, and a language I don't understand.

Is this the reason why we need to have more babies in Singapore? I almost feel like half the ppl ard me arent from singapore anymore. We are already a very smalll island, with this extensive immigration, I am not sure if we will have an identity that is Singaporean, that is uniquely singaporean....

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

extended haiku (after watching bout Geishas)

a song, a location, an action
a reminder of what could have been,what was before.

A new adventure, with some trepidiation
an in between before it begins.

To let one grow up, not hinder development,
Yet love, support, and to focus not on myself.

The year of the tiger, a new year awaits,
to shriek off the despair, to welcome the hope.

131am, i need to sleep,
to release to my God my wishes, regrets and desires.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

There must be a point to this.

26 years plus,moved around the little island. From Lower Delta to Bukit Batok to Choa Chu Kang, to Dairy Farm to Pine Grove and now to Hillview. The move is going to happen again and I am honestly dreading it. Not so much the type of home, or the state of the home, but the uncertainty that lies with it as well as the inconvenience of learning the environment all over again.

From thinking i am too old to be getting this affected, to being angry that there is no security..Perhaps it was my babyhood (less than 5) when I was passed on from one care giver to the other that makes me dread the change of environment... Yes, I am too old to blame my childhood for any of the woes in my life, I am grown and I make my own choices now. But I am trying to understand why this affects me greatly...

There must be a point, a point to this change, a point to a life of uncertainty. Surely it brings home the point that this life is a journey and not an end point, the want to do the Singaporean thing, buy a HDB, start a family in a new place is not the most alluring idea. Also, I am reminded that this world is not my home. One day, I will move to my eternal home and know that this is it....

I need your grace right now. Grace to not blame people in my life or seek the easy way out. Grace to learn from it and to come out of it stronger....

The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Five Loaves and Two Fishes - Corrinne May (Illustrated)

Dear Lord, I need a plan now. :) I know its your timing not mine,.. just trying my luck,

Talk to me soon, love, your child.

complete family

Yay. my brother just came home. Sis came home last week. We are one complete family again. :)

I am thinking.. that my brother is now a constant male in my life... he buys me toys/things that I dont need to "dispose" off when we are no longer best friends... I can still "enjoy" it. :)

This is getting more special as I grow older! Happy he is back!

ps: I am totally amused with my jet lagged sister, she is keeping regular hours!!! :)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

reflections

I just made a family friend's wife for the very first time.

She just reminded me that my mother is very supportive. This is very true. She has given me the strength to do the craziest things while still loving me.

Granted she nags me to pack my room, is always energetic for the next adventure, highly practical and sees thiings through black and white... and yes, is looking for us to move again...

I need to remember that she is one amazing Mommy! Without her, we might still be staying in a one room flat in Lower delta! ;)

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Happy New Year.

The LORD is my light and my salvation--whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life--of whom shall I be afraid? Ps 27:1

Its a new year. a new decade. With the coming of each year, what more a new decade!!! I tend to be afraid, very afraid... "gifted" with the sprit of perfectionism, I fear that I might do bad with the year, not live up to everything and you know, the normal doom and gloom ;)

So doing what most people do, I m in denial, pretending that the new year is not yet here and yes, be in general refusal of anything that signifies a new year... My bubble was just burst by a rejection from something I was looking forward to. The fear was worsened by my manager telling me bout how I can do better at work... So yes, with this post I intentionally begin my new year. With this post, I declare that I choose to live this year.

I will not make any resolutions this year, since I don't ever keep any. rather, learning from my mistakes and keeping to God's promises...

this year.

1) I want to remember that God is good. He is indefinitely good. And he is not just generally good. but he is good to me.

2) God is sovereign. He knows yesterday and tomorrow and what I will do today. I will not need to fear because He is big and He is looking out for me.

3) I want to learn to trust more and lean not on my understanding. Because I have a finite understanding and he is an infinite God. So, yes, to trust God..

4)Life is good. Life is meant to honor God. Meant to be happy. It is a blessing from God. To learn to smile more :)

5) to continue to love Him more than anything else in my life. to be content in Him and not seek my validation anywhere else.

So may I glorify His name in 2010, and cheers to a new year. Whatever the future holds, I'm in His Hands!!!