When I was doing my artwork last night, I paused to look at one of my brushes. It was old, quite worn out and the bristles were short. I contemplated throwing it away but a thought entered my mind. “It can still be used.” Then I was reminded how this is so much like the reasons (excuses?) some people use when they shy away from serving.
You may be getting old but it doesn’t mean that you can no longer serve God. Maybe you feel like you’ve done many wrongs in the past but it doesn’t mean you’re beyond redemption.
Ephesians 2:4-5 New International Version (NIV)
4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.
Maybe you feel you’re getting older and somehow just don’t quite blend in when the younger generation worshippers dances on stage and you just don’t/can’t dance (…like me), so… there are always other areas to serve. Smile and say hello to a new member of the church. Encourage one another. Pray and/or encourage your pastors.
1 Samuel 16:7 New International Version (NIV)
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
2 Timothy 2:20-21 New King James Version (NKJV)
20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.
So, I took a short break and went to KL for Joshua Bell’s concert. It has been several years since he last performed with the Malaysian Philharmonic. Instead of taking the budget airlines, I decided to take the bus, and the train. I quite enjoyed the journey by bus but not so much on the train back. If you’re planning to take the bus / train – please take a jacket. It can get really cold. The train (ETS) was especially cold. (Even colder than the times when I was on a long flight.
I suppose you kinda get what you pay for. The bus was nice because I had the option to sit alone. Arriving at KL Sentral, I had to walk to Nu Sentral to hop on the monorail to Bukit Nanas. I’ve been on the monorail before – a few months ago but definitely did not expect it to be so packed. (Like sardines in a can.) You’d think that the passengers outside can tell how packed it is and would wait for the next train – but that’s not usually the case. I wonder if anyone kissed the window of the monorail.
Stayed in TheBed KLCC for the first night, and the room was also cold. It was clean but I think I seem to have the tendency to end up staying in the room next to someone loud – or drunk that closed the door so loudly (if not – slammed the door). Breakfast was at 5am (Yay!) I headed to Level 1 and I guess everyone else was still sleeping. My second night was at Traders as I wanted to be close to where the concert would be held (Dewan Filharmonik). So relieved that my room was ready at 9ish. Traders was/is wonderful. Stayed at Traders before. Loved it. Still love it. The bed was especially comfortable.
Meeting My Muse – so after the long anticipation, I was finally at the hall, – at the balcony. I was almost in tears because I’ve waited so long to hear him play again. There was a meet and greet session during interval (my guess was that he didn’t want to stay back for the second half). It’s too bad that we were not allowed to get a photo taken with him, but I managed to get his autograph. He looked tired but genuine nonetheless, he said “Thank you.” and I think I must’ve floated back to Traders. Suddenly I forgot my feet and leg muscles were so tired and painful. I had so much to say but I was in a long queue, and we were being rushed. 😦
On my way back to Penang, I almost froze in the train. It was very very cold. After arriving at Penang Sentral, I had to take a shuttle bus to the ferry stop. Another sardine experience.
I don’t think I want to eat sardines for a while.
Yesterday was a bad bad day. I’m glad that it’s over but I’m not sure if there are residues. I’m just hanging on to God while my world is spinning. Dementia is a terrible disease and it affects not only the person who is sick but the caregivers. It requires being able to tolerate mean things said. It gets even worse when what is said attacks the very core of you.
Today is one of those days that I want to disappear and ask God to hide me from the world. Life is so crazy and hectic, I just want to stop everything and run to Jesus and hide.
Guess what! I’m traveling again soon. I’m so looking forward to the trip but at the same time a bit nervous. Just need to remind myself to get my plans written down.
I can at least, dream of seeing Il Divo in my trip. It would definitely make my day (or year..)
I wouldn’t want to get off the gondola if the gondolier is anything like Carlos Marin. In my head, I’d probably be saying, “Sing,…my angel of music.”
I was introduced to this song when I was at the Current for Women retreat/conference.
I’ve never enjoyed waiting. One of the worst waiting time was when I was waiting for my turn to go to the OT (operation theatre). I was sitting in a room with a few people and I remember one kid who went before me. It was supposed to be my turn but she was getting nervous so I decided to let her go first. It would only get worse when one’s waiting time is extended. Oh how the mind will play tricks on you. Then worry and fear begins. That waiting room was short but it wasn’t pleasant. (Waiting is never pleasant, eh?)
I’m in another waiting room in my life. In fact, I’ve been in this waiting room for what seems like forever. During the retreat, I realized that I never really trusted God ~ if I am completely truthful. It’s still a struggle to let go because I do sometimes wonder – what if what God wants is not what I want? And how long must I struggle in this waiting room? If I am to reflect God in this waiting room, it feels more like I’m looking more and more like mud and clay.
It’s always easier to sing songs about trusting God but when it comes to trusting Him in the darkness, it takes faith (because the surrounding is pitch black and you don’t know where you’re going) and courage (because you still need to carry on) while choosing to trust Him (although you have absolutely no idea why He allowed you to enter this mess.
But….note to self,…. Hang in there. “Big Brother” is there.
1 Peter 1:3-9 The Message (MSG)
A New Life
3-5 What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now! God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have it all—life healed and whole.
6-7 I know how great this makes you feel, even though you have to put up with every kind of aggravation in the meantime. Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine. When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold, that God will have on display as evidence of his victory.
8-9 You never saw him, yet you love him. You still don’t see him, yet you trust him—with laughter and singing. Because you kept on believing, you’ll get what you’re looking forward to: total salvation.
Whatever you call it, you need it. I know I needed it. I had been running around so much, getting so busy with work (no – I’m not a workaholic) and trying to desperately to find time to pursue my passion in art, and yet still need to carve out time to spend with the Lord. Needless to say, it has been difficult because I found myself adding yet another thing in this plate. I had to find something else in order to escape my busy-ness. After a while, I decided to take a selah moment. Yes. Stop. Pause and spend time with God.
I recently attended Current for Women which was something like a conference but not really. To me, it felt more like a retreat because I needed time with God. I needed a place where I can pause to reflect and worship God. I liked how they had different stations with little booklets to guide you in your reflection. I totally enjoyed the sessions and found other ways of connecting to God. It provided a safe space for me to be myself and worship the Lord.