I never thought I’d see my dad going to church again but today, I was so amazed that he’s feeling well enough to go to church and to want to go for service. You see, my dad had a bad bout with osteoporosis. All those years doing his favourite activity (sweeping the garden) has caused him to have a bad back. And yet, he still strives to sweep the garden. He has to wear braces to support his back for long term and there have been days when he was stubborn and did what he wasn’t supposed to do; which brought him greater pain. There was a time when he was beginning to feel negative and didn’t want to listen to the Chinese sermons I got for him. However, praise God that he is up and about and is well enough to go to church.
Some friends have told me that they don’t know how I was able endure throughout the year 2012. It’s not like I never had bouts of depression because I did. And yet, I’m thankful for the friends and pastors who stood by me. Looking back, I wonder if the workout and the quest to be fit and have a beautiful figure became my idol at some point. It’s dangerous when you start wanting to be someone else, which perhaps, at one time, I did try to be someone else. I worked really hard in my workouts. I can’t recall when wanting to be healthy and fit became wanting to look good.
Then of course,when I had to stop my exercises and was housebound for 1 month, I was locked in with my parents and just a few friends who came to visit me to pray for me and just to support me. Most importantly, I had all the time in the world to read the Bible. I had time to paint and somehow whenever I paint, I’m reminded of God. And I had to stop trying to be someone else because He reminded me that He didn’t create me to be that someone whom I was trying to be. He created me unique, with the talents and gifts etc…
To those who thought I was always strong throughout last year, I’m afraid they’re wrong. It’s just that I had a Rock to lean on. And the LORD is good.
Psalm 73:26 My mind and body may fail; but God is the rock for my mind and my portion forever. (CJB)
2 Samuel 22:3 the God who is my Rock, in whom I find shelter, my shield, the power that saves me, my stronghold and my refuge. My savior, you have saved me from violence.
There’s so much I don’t know about tomorrow. I will be returning to the office tomorrow but as I had been informed, there’s a group of us who would be reporting to a different manager. I’m not sure when that would come into effect. I’m not sure how the changes would affect my work. Perhaps having a new portfolio wouldn’t be too bad.
The best news I have for today is that I feel much better when I walk down the stairs. Less pain. However, my legs feel weak because of the weakened quadriceps muscles, I reckon. I pray that God would give me the strength and grace to face tomorrow and every day. No doubt, I feel the pressure at times when I see the worry in my father’s face. I wish, I can heal much faster so that I can take that worry of his face. But even my mom says that it will take time. The quadriceps muscles need to be retrained. It’s not only patience being tested but perseverance.
Meanwhile, here’s one of my favourite worship songs. I learned it from a friend and it had stuck with me since then.
Lately I’ve started running quite a bit for cardio training. And as I run, I listen to music but I also meditate on the Word of God. This morning, when I started running, I kept looking at the time on the machine. Suddenly a verse came to my mind.
Hebrews 12:1-2 (TNIV)
1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For a while, I asked myself what it meant for me personally. Throw off everything? What exactly would I be throwing off? As I looked up and straight towards the horizon, I imagined myself running on the tracks in the field. The word “focus” came to me. It reminded me how I should stay focused as I run this race. The race I am mentioning here is my personal walk with God as I continue to grow, while holding on to His promises.
I have spoken to a few friends who run in marathons and I know that in order to finish well, you need to run carrying as little weight as possible. I realized that this is so true, even in life. In my opinion, in order to run well, we must keep our eyes focused on what is ahead – our goal, or prize.
1 Cor 9:24 (TNIV)
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.
Sometimes I wish God would give us spiritual blinders to prevent us from being distracted by what goes on along the race. Horses wear blinders to prevent them from being distracted. Many a time, I think I need a pair too. To me, throwing off everything means letting go of the past and moving on. It means that no matter how alone I feel when I am being misunderstood, I will keep on keeping on to finish this race and reach my destiny.
When I ran this morning, I sensed God speaking to my spirit that He is running with me and therefore, I will reach my destination.
Why did I embed this video? Because I find Eric Liddell such an inspiration. And indeed, God honours those who honours Him.