Sunday, December 27, 2009
I am so thankful for all the Lord has done for me in 2009, and I am exceedingly excited to see more to come in 2010. As we enter the last week of December, I can't help but to look back on 2009, and look forward to a new year ahead.
This Christmas was the first Christmas Deric and I celebrated together as husband and wife, along with my beloved Mum and two of our good friends. We had a restful & relaxing day rejoicing in the Lord, amidst cooking and reflecting on the real meaning of Christmas - the birth of Jesus.
On Boxing Day we went to our church's outreach activity where there was a BBQ organised for people in the community. I got talking to a homeless guy and learned so much from him. That really reminded me that presence is just as important, if not more important than presents during Christmas and in our daily lives.
I am interested to know what the Lord has done for you in 2009? Also, if you have any thoughts and visions for 2010 I would love for you to share them in the comments. I'd love to pray for you and with you.
God bless you all right now & in this coming year of 2010
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Three weeks ago a good friend of mine from the US asked me the above question. I had no idea what Advent Conspiracy (AC) was. She told me about it, and invited me to join the movement. (If you don't know what it is, you can find out more through their website on http://www.adventconspiracy.org/). I was so touched by the principles and concepts behind AC, but quickly forgot about it due to busyness. Tonight I was reminded of AC from the video at church, and decided to spread the word.
Christmas has the power to change the world. So, what happened? What was once a time to celebrate the birth of a savior has somehow turned into a season of stress, traffic jams and shopping lists.
And when it's all over, many of us are left with presents to return, looming debt that will take months to pay off, and this empty feeling of missed purpose. Is this what we really want out of Christmas?
What if Christmas became a world-changing event again?
My new family has a 'no-gift' policy - all money for "Christmas shopping" will go to meaningful causes instead. Like one of the ethos of AC, we prefer giving presence over giving presents, for the sake of it. And we are determined to celebrate the reason for the season - Jesus Christ our Saviour! We vote compassion over consumption!
I want to encourage you to join this movement, and I pray that the Lord will use it mightily for HIS glory.
Wishing you all a blessed & joy-filled Christmas, as you celebrate the birth of our Lord, spend time with loved ones, and reflect on the glorious gospel and the wonderful news of Immanuel - God with us!
Tuesday, December 01, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
There are many crises of our times in all areas — family, economic, religious, moral, societal and political. There is an unprecedented need for spiritual renewal all over the world. If there is still the opportunity for radical transformation, we desperately need a way forward, a Godly strategy that will set forth the principles we need to follow.
Since becoming part of the Transforming Melbourne movement, I have been reading and reflecting on the subject of transformation. C. S. Lewis once argued, every culture has its own blind spots, its own outlook. It is good at "seeing certain truths and especially liable to make certain mistakes." C. S. Lewis placed great value on seeing through other people's eyes. He said, "My own eyes are not enough for me, I will see through those of others."
In this context we desperately need community, the church, so that we are stimulated to love and good deeds. The church, as Paul said to Timothy, was intended to be "the pillar and foundation of the truth" that transforms. We can hope for victory not because of our own strength but because the battle is the Lord's. We can trust in the character and purposes of our Lord. We need to intervene in the conflict, but we also need to maintain our strength through intercession. Even if we lose personally, our God wins in the end. That is our sure and certain hope.
Several concluding observations can be made related to transformation as a unifying mission for the Church at the beginning of the twenty-first century. A three-year World Inquiry related to the mission of God has shown that “the patterns of the past are showing ‘wear’ and are in need of repair.” A new paradigm that helps us interpret and organize our approach to mission for the future has emerged. God is on a mission of transformation and is calling out servants to act as catalysts in mobilizing the whole body of Christ to bless the nations through the transformation of people, churches and culture.
Are you willing to take part in that?
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Last night, I was feeling weary & weak. I had an early night and rested for most of today and now I am feeling better. Does that mean I am healthy and well?
The truth is, if we are able to eat, sleep and work, it does NOT necessarily mean that we are healthy. Health is holistic. According to World Health Organisation (WHO), "health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity."
Holistic view of health is a view in medical practice upholding that all aspects of people's needs, psychological, physical and social, should be taken into account and seen as a whole. Disease is a result of physical, emotional, spiritual, social and environmental imbalance. We need to develop a much more holistic and well-rounded view of what it means to be healthy.
There are three areas to each person:
(1) Our Body (the physical nature)
(2) Our Soul (the mind, will, emotional & intellectual nature), and
(3) Our Spirit (the part of us that transcends this world and communes with God).
Even though our body may not be 'diseased', we do need to make sure that our soul & spirit are healthy too.
How do you ensure that you're healthy and well all round? Please leave your comments below to share with me!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Australia. Although it is almost over, the fight for a cure isn't!
There are so many ways to help. Clicking at The Breast Cancer Site is one way to benefit the cause. Go to TheBreastCancerSite.com and click on the pink button that says "Click Here To Give - It's Free!" For every click, the sponsors donate funds to the National Breast Cancer Foundation to provide free mammograms for women in need. It's easy and it works: Over 20,000 women have been helped so far!
All of us can take action for the cause now, and I think it's important to make the fight against breast cancer a priority in October and beyond!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
It's been a while since I wrote this blog. I have been really busy since my wedding 5months ago and the recent postponed honeymoon in Malaysia. Along with my ministry with Transforming Melbourne, I have officially started writing the manuscript of a new book about transformation, as well as pursuing the idea for an online interactive learning environment (ILE) and I am very excited about it all!
I have started the program of building the website for this virtual online training about dating and relationships. With fear and trepidation I embark on this new venture so I can be even more equipped to help people in transforming their lives and achieving their dreams. Pray for me friends. I need to dive into the major world of e-learning, book writing and in depth research. Exciting and challenging so far!
Thursday, September 03, 2009
During the 40 hour famine last weekend, I went beneath the water, let the world above go on, and gave up talking. The experience was both enriching yet challenging! I spent a fair bit of time praying, as I believe that prayer could be like a canvas of silence, and on it we paint sparely, with no word or sound. Instead of 'talking' to God like I usually do during prayer, I simply spent time with Him, and realised that silence can really be a symphony bathing my ears with God's Presence. No wonder it's been said that silence is golden.
On the other hand, as I looked into the silence, at times I battled with a sea of mutes, which led me to begin thinking about those who don't have a voice in our society. There are so many injustice issues in our world, so many without a voice: the hungry kids in extreme poverty, the women that are trafficked victims, the refugees that have experienced war, the homeless people on the street.
The Father heart of God breaks over His voiceless children. What would our city look like if the voiceless children of God are cared for?
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
1. Recall you are in the Presence of God
2. Look at your day with Gratitude
3. Ask for help from the God as you Review Your Day
4. Review your Day
5. Reconcile and Resolve
I think this will be helpful for me, and I'll try to use this exercise regularly.
Friday, March 20, 2009
But God spoke to me, which really comforted and helped me. He said:
" I am here. Fear not. Can you really trust Me? I am a God of Power, as well as a Man of Love, so human, yet so divine.
Just trust. I cannot, and I will not fail you. All is well. Many are praying for you.
Such wonderful things are coming to you: Joy - Peace - Assurance - Security - Health - Happiness - Laughter - COURAGE!!"
Praise you Lord!
Sunday, March 15, 2009
The smile of God is the goal of life. Since pleasing God is the first purpose of your life, your most important task is to discover how to do that. The Bible says, "Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it" (Ephesians 5:10 MSG). Fortunately, the Bible gives us a clear example of a life that gives pleasure to God in the story of Noah. In Noah's day, the entire world had become morally bankrupt. Everyone lived for their own pleasure, not God's. God couldn't find anyone on earth interested in pleasing him, so he was grieved and regretted making man. God became so disgusted with the human race that he considered wiping it out.But there was one man who made God smile. The Bible says, "Noah was a pleasure to the Lord" (Genesis 6:8 LB).God said, "This guy brings me pleasure. He makes me smile. I'll start over with his family." Because Noah brought pleasure to God, you and I are alive today.Over the next few days, we will learn from Noah's life the five acts of worship that make God smile. Here is the first one:God smiles when we love him supremely. Noah loved God more than anything else in the world, even when no one else did! The Bible tells us Noah "consistently followed God's will and enjoyed a close relationship with him" (Genesis 6:9 NLT).This is what God wants most from you: a relationship! It's the most astounding truth in the universe: our Creator wants to fellowship with us. God made you to love you, and he longs for you to love him back. He says, "I don't want your sacrifices—I want your love; I don't want your offerings—I want you to know me" (Hosea 6:6 LB).Can you sense God's passion for you in this verse? God deeply loves you and desires your love in return. He longs for you to know him and spend time with him. This is why learning to love God and to be loved by him should be the greatest objective of your life.Nothing else comes close in importance. Jesus called it the greatest commandment. He said, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment" (Matthew 22:37-38 NIV).
Let us all pursue this worthwhile goal of putting a smile on God's face :)
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
The prayer coordinator Sue Tinworth from TM said she had felt Jesus’ invitation to love 'the Church’ for Him. The Church (His bride) that He loves so much. (Ephesians 5:25-27). This dear woman whom He entrusts to His son to take to His home. (John 19:26-27). He entrusts His bride to us, friends of the bride groom, while she is waiting for Him. John 3:29 Before he left Shepherd entrusted His lambs to those who truly, truly, truly love Him, saying, Take care of my sheep. (John 21:15,16,17). Do we see the Church as lovingly as Jesus does?
I resonate with Sue's reflections on being one with Jesus, and I long for that quiet rest, satisfaction and delight in Him. I desire to focus on who Jesus is in these weeks of prayer and fasting, and beyond.....I am committed to loving Jesus with all my heart, soul, mind and strength. I must admit the idea of Jesus' invitation to seeing and responding to what He shows me about the Church and loving ‘her’ for Him is quite surprising, if not foreign.
Lord, please help me to truly see the Church as lovingly as you do.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Although a single painting by Van Gogh "Stary stary night" would become one of the most paintings in histroy, in his lifetime Van Gogh sold only one painting, four months prior to his death.
Before developing his theory of relativity, Albert Einstein encountered academic failure. He was expelled from school and another teacher predicted that he would never amount to anything. Einstein even failed his entrance exam into college.
Failure didn't stop Vincent Van Gogh from painting, or Albert Einstein from theorizing, but it has paralyzed countless leaders and prevented them from reaching their potential.
At some point, all great achievers are tempted to believe they are failures. But in spite of that, they persevere. In the face of adversity, shortcomings, and rejection, they hold onto self-believe and refuse to see themselves as failures. Here are seven abilities of achievers that enable them to rebound from failure and keep moving forward.
Friday, February 13, 2009
But God sits on His throne above all these things, and He overrules even the most evil purpose and uses even those fallen, evil or senseless things to accomplish His good purpose in our lives. That means we can embrace any circumstance we find ourselves in (good or bad) as God's opportunity for us to grow and to minister in His name to others.
**inspired by John North**
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Red - love, excitement, warmth
Pink - romantic, affection, sensuality
White - purity, peace, perfection
Blue - sky, water, travel, freedom, truth
Purple - royalty, dignity
Black - space, night, authority
Green - money, calm, envy, greed
Yellow - light, purity, understanding
Orange - autumn, youthfulness, fire
Brown - wood, comfort, strength
What do you think?
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
As Paul tells us in Philippians 3:14 - "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Let us each press on toward the goal! At the moment, I am up to the readings in Exodus with the Plagues, the Passover, the Exodus, the Crossing of the Red Sea, and Manna from Heaven! Matthew brings several incredible Parables, Palm Sunday, The Great Commandment and the Seven Woes!
I have set some big goals and resolutions for 2009 and amongst that, I know that ultimately my life is in a very good place because I am moving forward with my relationship with God. Reading and studying God’s Word regularly is a high priority. How about you? Do you agree that reading from God’s Word each day and growing in your relationship with God is a priority and very important in your life?
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Forgiveness and Forgetfulness are sitting, holding hands,
out on their verandah hearing songs of old jazz bands.
Forgiveness has lost all her teeth, Forgetfulness is blind.
Forgetfulness forgets the words, Forgiveness doesn't mind.
He only sees her youthful face from all those years ago
and even though he's lost his sighther touch he'll always know.
She asks "Do you recall past pains?"He answers "No I don't"
He turns and asks "And you my Love?"She smiles and says "I won't".
They weren't always this happy. This couple that you see
They once lived in a townhouse in a town called Misery.
He'd write, all night by candlelight, His face a solemn frown,
Recalling every single wrong and writing them all down.
She wasn't that much better,With her face a furrowed pout
All day long she'd wash her clothesher stains never came out.
Her head down and teeth gritted. Her deep cries left unheard.
His mind forever in the dark. He never spoke a word.
Both of them had wounded heartsone hard, the other broken.
Both together, yet apart. No words of grace were spoken.
Until one day the house caught fire. There was noone to blame.
They ran out and watched all they owned, get swallowed up in flame.
She lost all of her wardrobe all those clothes covered with stains.
He lost his precious journals full of all his precious pains.
So hand in hand they walked away, And left it all behind.
Her jaw unlocked, her teeth fell out!In daylight, he went blind!
Their new house is called Happy,it makes noises through the day,
The floorboards creak but they’d not have itany other way.
So if you asked what he once wrote. That he would not recall.
And if you ask her what she needs, She’d say “I have it all”.
He can't remember what they lost. She knows how much she has.
We watch them both sit back and smileand listen to old jazz.
Now Is that not the life you want. The story you’d be living?
The joy and peace that could be found, Forgetting and Forgiving…
“An Eye for eye and tooth for tooth”This worldly law is ruthless.
But Forgiveness and Forgetfulnessare quite happy… blind and toothless.
By John Englezos
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
A 3-year project of Transforming Melbourne "ALL MELBOURNE MATTERS" has been completed. It's a research of the Church to reach the city. The vision of the project is the systematic research of the demographics of Greater Melbourne and the size, locations and vitality of all churches across the City to enable and encourage the whole Church to develop a common vision and coordinated strategies for ministry and intentional mission to our city.
Feel free to go over to the "TM Blog" and read the articles.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Love sits at a tables lowly smashing china plates.
Wondering whatever happenedto those canceled dinner dates.
Joy is a red head girl he wants to ask to dance
her friends come past and then she leave she never gets the chance.
Peace is a baker in furious passion he bakes
but noone comes into his shop to try his bread and cakes.
Patience is a foster mum, her house shrinks and grows
she tidies up the children's mess and on and on it goes...
Kindness will work overtime at no extra cost
but noone compliments her dress or how much weight she's lost.
Goodness opens wide his doors, he shares a meal with ease,
but when he goes into his lounge they've taken his cd's.
Faithful coughs and sneezes he stands shivering in the rain,
she said "I'll just be back in five"but didn't come back again.
Gentleness eats alone in a quiet place she'll cry
she wants to go and talk to him but won't because she's shy.
Self control is a werewolfby day he hums a tune by night
he sits upon the roof and howls up at the moon.
For those of you who hear and know it is of Fruit I speak,
perhaps I'm just too cynicalor maybe getting weak.
But as we slowly turn to grey I fear this world's blind eyes
It seems these godly qualities Noone will recognise...
So take the time to look and see and show people you know
You'll be watering God's garden then sit back and watch it grow...
*******"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.Against such things there is no law. "Galatians 5:22-23*******
(POEM BY JOHN ENGLEZOS)