Years ago May Chin and I got lost in a place called Dart Moor in England during our honeymoon. We had a simple map, but maybe a wrong turn took us to the wrong direction. It was scary. We pushed further and further away from the fields into the forest. When we arrived looking down at the stream , we knew we were REALLY lost. But, then a spark of insight came to me, and I suggested to my new bride that we need to somehow get down to the stream and the waters should happily flowing to somewhere, and lead us back to the town.
So, we skid and stumbled down the slope through the leaves reaching the stream. Our jeans were tainted with dirt and mud while we were avoiding our backpacks from falling off while we were sliding down at times 🙂 At the end, we got across the stream and found a walking path. Some joggers passed us by with an intrigued look at two lost Malaysians trying to find their way back to "civilization".
It worked. The stream led us back where we needed to be, so we could get back on our journey. That’s what happens when the Word of God coming through the Bible, and specifically through the voice of Jesus does for us as well as the whisper of the Spirit. Streams of living water leading us back to the path of we were supposed to be walking. We were once lost but now we’ve found a way back.
(Note: Check out the streams here –> Help Reading the Bible)
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Nourishing one’s soul is so important these days. But this practice is not often given due attention. What has often demanded our attentions are that which is urgent , surface and immediate. Our time tables are driven by the agendas of others, and it’s so easy to get caught in the "flow". We could survive of "reserves" for awhile … but in the long run, we are sucked dry and if not careful border on being burnt out. The stress whether good stress which energizes us, or bad stress which tires us will always be there. But when our inner core is empty, we need to STOP and make amends … beginning now. Sure, once upon a time we had a good rhythm of prayer, work and rest. Maybe we plan to do it next week or next month when we have "time". But we can’t live merely in the past or in the future, what we have before us is today. And today is a good time to nourish our souls.. One good practice I do now is, whenever the thought of giving some attention to my soul occurs, I just stop for 2 minutes and pray, reflect or pause for a moment of silence while contemplating on the presence of God. Try it. And see what happens.. .. of course, slowing down your breathing helps. 🙂
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It’s been a while since my last visit to what can be called "squatters". And this one is so close to where our church is located. Originally, I was hoping to meet some of the victims of a recent fire at a nearby Stadium, somehow the agenda shifted to paying a visit to the original squatters. I was challenged again to see first the gap between many of us and those who are living in the squatters. Second, because of the tragedy of the fire, issues of relocation, communities working together, dealing with the authorities all come into play. On a broader view, one would ask, ""How can you see God in such an event?"
But as we were in conversation with the local folk which included a mix of different ages and gender, what was immediately important was what is next? Speculative discussions didn’t dominate. And as a person of faith, I was reminded of allowing a healthy faith keep my focus. That’s where the energy comes from in dealing with suffering and tragedy.
"Faith in God is dynamic rather than static – that is, God works with us. In times when we are complacent and self-centered, we can completely miss God’s dynamic work in our lives and thereby lose the meaning of being created in God’s image."
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These harmonics vibrated from July 21- July 23, 2008