Carmen, Hoong Guit and Rachel did great to welcome us at the door around 10am yesterday. But just looking at this picture reminds me how “women” play such an important role in BLC’s story thus far … whether it’s ministries related to worship, learning, children or leadership … they have truly contributed much energy as well as insight!
With our worship catalyst having a nice holiday in Hawaii 🙂 I found myself being the liturgist and lead worshipper for the Christmas gathering. Wai Kin (who’s liturgies always brings freshness in BLC) and another long time worship leader in BLC Siew Poh managed some simple harmonies and laughter here and there!
We had a good mix of older and newer songs (I think) but I also REALLY desired to see how all of us both young and old could be drawn …
– to participate fully (the kids helped give out some Stars),
– ponder holistically (with ideas adapted from here)
– as well as “pause” this season (we used the stars to help us write down some of our thoughts and responses)
– to connect with Christ and his reign (in whatever way possible)!
one of our guitarist just got discharged from hospital last Thursday, nice to have Leigh (in the blue shirt) stepping in last minute to fill in the “vacancy”. His wife Sarah (with the violin) always adds flavour and excitment to the mix whenever we play together and Joanne (a faithful long time musician) moved from the djembe and then to the keyboard.
I’m glad Moh Foong agreed to do an adapted version of the “Christmas Cookery” skit – she is not just my part time assistant but also one of BLC’s fantastic chef. She managed to get Paul and Joanne (who are preparing to get married next year!) to be Mary and Joseph!
Su Shen & John read the scriptures – from Hebrews 1:1-4, (5-12) – to orient us to God’s message for us. There’s was a good interplay of the female and male voice and at climatic points a unison that seeks to allow the seeds of truth to sink in.
I then read from the Gospel of John 1:1-14, highlighting the theme of “adoption” and us being given the right to be “children of God” through Jesus Chirst. At one point after showing a DVD clip to illustrate this somewhat I just couldn’t contain some emotion in me and choked up a little … I always feel embarressed by moments like these – but nowadays, I find myself so easily “moved” by moments of genuine grace, compassion, and love shown through others because it especially becomes a sign and window for me to connect with God’s love and grace towards us in a REAL way.
There’s more moments (which I don’t have the photos yet) with the kids doing a simple dance with the song “Forever”, and then people being given a chance to share one thing they sense God is reminding them or they are discovering to one another (kind of like a 5 minute meeting to share with each other), and a great sending after the benediction by a guest from Argentina who lead us in “Feliz Navidad” – original spanish flavor to end huh? I’m also thank ful that we had a small number Europeans (Germany), North Americans (USA), South Americans (Argentina) and Australians (*grin*) joining us Asians (Malaysians) celebrating Christmas in the Father’s House (we missed the Africans huh?) – but we’re all together because of Christ and being part of his family!
Of course, Families eat together! 🙂 I’m glad I managed to get quite a few pieces of lamb …
Apart form conversations around the tables, some just enjoyed having fun!