So amazing ^.^ An oldie but still good :P
*Metal Gear Solid 4*
Akiba and Meryl — How Romantic ^.^
My first time going to such a big event where thousands of people gather in the name of Jesus. It was simply amazing and breath-taking to see the number of people who publicly walked down to commit their lives to Jesus. Each of these individuals (~2600 on that Friday night) all possess their own experiences and reasons for walking onto their field (whether it be for their first time believing that Jesus is the way or recommitting the importance of Jesus in their lives). I’d imagine each and everyone’s story to be unique and inspiring, capable of touching at least one other person on this earth.
But instead people get to read this:
Ok so I know I shouldn’t just really express my love for my dad on only one day of the year but the past few weeks and especially today’s sermon at Creekside really got me thinking about my relationship with my dad… so much so that today I actually cried at church for the first time 0.o
I don’t think my relationship with my dad is that bad. In fact I feel like i’ve grown to appreciate him a lot more lately. My mom tells me how hard working he was when my parents first got married and started a family with regards to all the schooling and work he had to do to succeed and really provide for the family. Even now (30 some years in the industry) my dad is a successful engineering working as a manager (recent promotion) at Broadcom… being able to solely provide for my family of 6. If there’s one amazing individual who really provided me with the sense of responsibility and drive for my education it would definitely be my dad.
However, I don’t know if this is customary among asian families, but one thing that i’ve begun to notice is how my dad never actually says “I Love you” or maybe about how proud he is of me. I’m sure its all implied through his actions and I have no doubt that he does however recently I’ve been just watching movies which kinda brings up the relation between father and son (cartoons actually… two of which are “how to train your dragon” and “cloudy with a chance of meatballs”) Granted the latter was a terrible movie overall and wasn’t very much like the book I remember being read growing up however in both movies towards the end the father express his love and approval of the son and both times i teared up because I personally don’t recall any sort of response from my dad (like when i graduated from undergrad/ grad school/ got into law school, etc…) but I know he does love me … just never says it i guess?
But today at church, oh man, I wasn’t expecting the reaction that I would’ve had. Overall the sermon was talking about the parable of the prodigal son from the bible… how the son chose to go off from home (with half of the father’s inheritance) and live his own life. However later the son realizes he was stupid (after squandering his inheritance) and decides to go home hoping to at least work as one of his father’s slaves (believing himself not worthy to be called his son any more). However instead of the thought of scenario that the son was about to propose, the father came running out and celebrated the return of the son (a response probably surprising to the son and probably unorthodox even in today’s world). This parable was used to express the love that God our Father has for us, how His heart is always directed to us, no matter if we go astray through sin and our own dealings, when we choose to return to Him… God will be like the father… running to us so happy to have us back.
I guess I only brought this up because its not like God really says “I Love you” to me on a daily basis (that or I don’t really hear him saying it). But through his grace and mercy (and the thought that He gave up his son Jesus to save us from Sin and death) just are signs that he does love us so very much. I guess I realized that in a way my dad really does love me too and maybe I don’t really need to hear it from him. However what I do know is despite my own personal choices that i’ve undertaken which may not really be in the same line as what my dad believes to be good/bad for me… I really do look up to him and love him so much.
So even though father’s day shouldn’t really be just one day in the year… I just wanna at least practice saying this:
I LOVE YOU DAD :)
There is no hurt God can’t heal.– Kingdom Living (part 3) regarding the Sermon on the Mount
No sin God can’t forgive.
I heard a story on Kwave a few days ago and just been thinking about it since. It was talking about faith with the context of a kite.
The story involved this young kid who was flying a kite. The kite flew up into the air so high, above the clouds, that the kid could not see the actual kite any more. The only thing anyone could see was the kid holding onto a string going up into the sky. Sometime later another individual came up to the kid and asked what the kid was doing. The kid responded that he was flying his kite. The person looked up and didn’t see anything and asked the kid, how he knew the kite was still up there and whether or not he was sure. Even though he is not able to see the kite at this moment the kid still feels the tug on the string upwards produced by the kite and just knows that the kite is up there somewhere in the sky.
I guess in the same way our relationship with God is the same way (from what I remember from the sermon). We know He exists somewhere up there (in heaven)… we just don’t see Him (like how the kid wasn’t able to see the kite). However there are ways to know that He exists and is around (like the string) that constantly is pulling us to follow Him.
I know i have a tendency to want empirical proof before believing. Maybe that’s the science and law background talking and even my patron saint (that I chose for Confirmation), the Apostle Thomas aka doubting Thomas, is alluding to this general “want” for proof that I’ve always had. The Apostle Thomas had wanted to touch Jesus’ wounds to make sure that Jesus had in fact risen from the dead. Only after receiving the proof, did Thoma believe Jesus had risen and in some ways there is a part of me that kind of wants some king of sign to tell me what I’ve been doing these past few months have been pleasing to Him.
I guess i’m just going to end with a quote to what Jesus had said to the Apostle Thomas :
“Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.”
Events over the past few days have really got me re-evaluating what a “friend” is; what constitutes being a friend; how you know when someone is your friend. I’m still relatively new still, maybe 3 years or so, relearning (or in many aspects learning for the first tie) what it is meant to be a friend or to see someone as being a friend because of my exposure to MCIA. I feel like the terms like bff, “friend,” “buddy,” “bro,” “pal,” etc… can thrown around so much and with little thought that the meaning can taken for granted (and i know i do this frequently). It’s really hard, for me anyways, to understand what it really means to be a friend when some individuals start questioning whether or not you’ve been a good “friend”. All I know so far for sure is that friendship, like any other relationship, requires hard work to maintain. What is a “friend” is so vague and probably variant among anyone I will ask (very much how “love” can also be defined so differently). So if you guys have any input please let me know … would be really helpful :)
So to end this i guess… How would you define a “friend”?
Today’s sermon at Creekside was really thought-provoking because it touched on an aspect that virtually all of us deal with. This came as a continuation on a series dealing with the Sermon on the Mount.
Of all the possible sins that Jesus talks about, anger is the first. Almost all sin/ wrongdoing is rooted in anger. Anger can be perceived as a first spontaneous response to a personal wrong; that initial reaction towards the other for some violation of trust for example. However initially this form of anger is not sin. It is possibly a necessary reaction . Jesus himself was also susceptible to anger (this was raised in the context of His reaction when He found moneychangers and other merchants within the temple and drove them out).
What was raised in the sermon is the “anger” that exists beyond that initial reaction. When that emotion/feeling becomes and transforms into contempt or becoming a grudge of sorts. When this anger manifests it could be the basis for deep resentment of others, dismisses the competency of others or attacks the values of others. This form of anger is damaging because it separates, divides and perverts the concept of Love that God wishes to promote. How many of us would be willing to go up and hang out with people who you know are short fuses or those who are likely to yell and take out their anger on you?
This message (regarding the sermon on the mount) wanted to go beyond the original commandment regarding murder and equated that anger was of the same sort of magnitude in relation to sin. Just because individuals do not actually kill, the anger building up within someone; that resentment being bottled up inside… the effect of the two (committing murder and nurturing anger towards an individual) still provides the same end result to the heart. This was something that Jesus wanted to address i suppose?
I guess what really got to me was how anger can manifest or be expressed. Personally I consider myself really tolerant; capable of taking alot and not really expressing any sort of dissatisfaction. I only know off the top of my head a handful of instances in my life when I actually “exploded” or felt like I needed to express my anger at that moment. However the sermon really got me thinking because anger can also manifest in other ways such as in emotional withdrawal.
For me I thought withdrawal was just a natural reaction (to protect myself I guess from further hurt?) I never really thought or perceived it as an anger issue but after reflecting on a recent turn of events I guess the “anger” just will always exist until the problem is resolved. However upon hearing this part of the sermon my mind immediately jumped back to a conversation I had a few days ago with someone from my law school. I had liked her for a while and thought we were doing well (just hanging out and studying). However after one of our hangouts during winter break, she stopped talking to me. I had tried to talk to her after a few times but it was always the same excuse… “sorry i got work… i’m busy… school.” Story of my life really… whenever something starts to look good, it will have a tendency to sour super quick. So in response I kind of just moved on (and chose not to pursue her) and thought if she really wanted to talk again she’d make the effort because I had tried and got nothing out of it. So this whole semester we didn’t really talk, which was weird because of the amount of time we had spent prior and the fact she was in a lot of my classes. I ended up meeting other people and studying with a new group of individuals. There were a few times when we’d see each other in the hallway and exchange hi’s but nothing substantial was done. To me I guess this was an all too frequent reality that I had to overcome and something I thought I could get over like others in the past.
However a few nights ago I wanted to just say hi, see how things were going but instead of the usual hi and ok… she remarked something along the line of why would I care? Almost seemed to be accusing me of ignoring her … that the lack of communication was my fault? That I didn’t want to talk to her or study with her? That this was all my fault?
What now disappoints me is how i responded to the situation… instead of asking why she thought that I left the conversation as is and talked to another friend about it… (which … as discussed in the sermon just further fuels the anger instead of really solving anything). Even now my thoughts are being brought up again and the hurt and the “anger” (i guess) still exists… something I will need to resolve now somehow.
I guess this post was just getting my thoughts down and identifying that even though I’m not really expressive about my anger that is noticeable by others… anger still exists… just in another form. And with this knowledge that I learned today I further realize how much harder it is to actually live according to what God will is. It is so difficult not to sin :/
I pray that God provides me strength and wisdom because I so need help right now not only in this situation but other not yet resolved issues as well.
On a side note… i love how every week I learn something new which makes me feel great that I understand something else that we could do to better improve our lives (change our beliefs that could better influence our actions) to make our lives more pleasing to God. However on the same coin I feel that knowledge also further builds the expectation of what God wants from us and the eventual feeling of failure as I further realize how hard it is to actually keep base on what God’s will is versus how easy it is to sin. This whole journey definitely a spiritual rollercoaster 0.o