His Benefits

2 Praise the Lord, my soul,
and forget not all His benefits—
3 who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
5 who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

~ Psalm 103 ~

Psalms 103 reminds us of God’s benefits to us:

i. He forgives us our sins
ii. He is the one who heals our diseases
iii. He has saved us from the pits in our lives
iv. He crowns us with love & compassion
v. He satisfies our desires with good things
vi. He renews our youth

The past year has been world-shattering but there are still things that I can be thankful for. It can take a lot of effort to get through the pain but I for one can attest that it gets a little easier each day to be thankful and through thanksgiving comes a little more healing. All I can say is that His grace is sufficient.

Amen.

Summer in My Heart

I just read this in today’s Slice of Infinity article and it’s at times like this when I truly appreciate how creative expression can say things that no utterance can fully picture.

I know in whom my soul believes,
I know in whom I trust;
The Holy One, the merciful,
the only wise and just.

I know in whom my soul believes,
and all my fears depart;
For though the winter winds may blow,
’tis summer in my heart.

-Fanny Crosby-

Enduring Sufferings

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? (Hebrews 12:7 NIV)

Hebrews 12:7 in the NIV struck me and comforted me at the same time this morning. I always figured the verse spoke of God disciplining us into maturity through sufferings but this morning the words “endure hardship as discipline” meant a whole lot more. It spoke to me about an attitude we take more than it did about the fact that God disciplines.

An attitude of knowing that God can take our sufferings to purify & mould us is a comforting truth. Learning to endure hardships as discipline isn’t easy but we can start by putting on new attitudes. The Bible tells us we are new creations in Christ and that often means we consciously have to put on new attitudes and views to be new creations and the only way to do that is to apply what God shows us in His Word.

I struggle to put on my new self these days especially with all the pain I have to endure due to a deep betrayal which has cost me to lose many things that are precious to me. Thankfully we do not have to go about this change alone as God has promised us help through the Spirit. Even though we may fail, we can always pick ourselves up with His help. I do want to note that our failures may have bad consequences (sometimes irreversible) and we cannot be presumptuous in thinking that our choices don’t matter. The great comfort I have is that His door is always open to draw us into a deeper relationship with Him if we choose to seek Him out. Amen.

A Tribute to Mummy

Mummy

My beloved mother

It’s Mother’s Day today and I’m not gonna be able to celebrate it with my mom but nevertheless I can still tell the world how much I love her so here goes…

Mummy’s passing last Wednesday was sudden and it was a shock to all of us but in a sense it was not a surprise because in His grace & mercy God gave my family ample time to love her all these 13 years since she got a second lease of life from a kidney transplant. I have no regrets in things with mummy because she knew I loved her and I was able to bless mummy with many chats, meals, movies and many nice things. Mummy also could see in me a love for God which she desired for me and the family because of her own walk with Jesus.

In His grace through a prophecy our family was always aware that God had blessed mummy with 10 years of life from the date of her kidney transplant and amazingly enough in His generosity God gave mummy another extra 3 years. For that I can never thank God enough for His goodness and for the extra 3 years of super good health that mummy enjoyed. In these 3 years mummy has traveled so much and just last year finally managed to visit the U.S. to spend an extended time with my aunt, uncle and cousins there. Even though it was a difficult time for me and I needed my parents’ support at that time I’m glad that mummy could go there. The beauty of it was that mummy & daddy could still support me through the wonder of technology via FaceTime on her iPad and I could see that even though mummy & daddy were in pain as well because of my suffering they truly were blessed with a wonderful time in Boston, New York & Washington D.C. with Auntie Ivy & Uncle Mike.

Mummy, I’ll miss you. I’ll miss having you around. I’ll miss you puttering about doing all kinds of things to love our family. I’ll miss the sound of your voice. I’ll miss calling you on the phone. I’ll miss WhatsApping you. I’ll miss the sight of you sitting on the bed or on the couch with your iPad playing games or just reading articles. I’ll miss the encouraging emails you forward to me and I’ll miss most of all the love that you have showered upon me, daddy and Kit. It is because of you that I have come to know Jesus in such a deep way. Your life had so much of Him and if not for you I would not be able to love the Word of God as much as I do and I would not be holding on so tight to Him in the midst of the great storm of the past year.

I love you mummy and in these few days I have seen just how much you have loved others by the presence of all the people who came for your wake and for your funeral. I can accept that you have gone Home to be with Jesus and I know that you are in a much better place. John 14:2-4 gives me that assurance that I will see my mummy again one day and in His grace when the passage was read on Thursday morning by Pr. Paul Christie an image of mummy sitting by a the sunlight in a beautiful white room flashed in my mind’s eye. Mummy looked up at me and she smiled.

My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”

Indeed we know where mummy is now and the Bible gives us that assurance time and time again. Mummy had to suffer for many years because of sickness and now she is in a place free of sickness, tears & suffering. She is home and one day daddy, Kit, Hoon and myself will be reunited with her when we too go the way of the earth.

Good-bye Mummy. I’ll see you again one day in that City on a Hill in the Presence of our Saviour; where all will be made right and all the pain that we have experienced here on this earth would be lost in the sea of His great love.

On Eagles Wings

Isaiah 40 talks about God’s comfort to His people and it heralds His coming. God is exalted in all His ways and Isaiah gives us a glimpse as to who God is:

1) God’s comfort (v1)
2) God’s justice (v2b)
3) God’s glory (v5)
4) God’s strength (v10)
5) God’s reward (v10)
6) God’s provision (v11)
7) God’s incomparable greatness (v15-18)
8) God’s grace (v29)

Isaiah 40 closes off with these words:

“But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.”

As we wait upon the Lord, we experience Him in all the 8 characteristics that Isaiah writes about. In God we truly can rise on wings like eagles. In God we can truly run and not grow faint. Why? Because He is my all in all much as He is yours.

Total Recall (Movie Review)

Total Recall

Total Recall

Hello true believers, Len Wiseman’s remake of Total Recall is slick and has great production values but somehow it just doesn’t have the provoke the same kind of excitement that the older movie had. The biggest thing that’s missing is the whole Mars spiel which sorta dials down the stakes that are presented in the plot.

Kate Beckinsale really shines as Lori Quaid in this one and I just “hated” her character which is quite an achievement especially as most of her roles sees her on the side of the angels. As usual she’s smokin’ hot and she’s more than just a pretty face with all her fast kicks & lightning fast action scenes. Colin Farrell & Jessica Biel aren’t as great in this one and if it weren’t for Kate Beckinsale I think the movie would’ve been super flat.

My memories of the original Total Recall are fuzzy but the thing that pulled this movie down for me was this; the critical plot twist is exactly the same in this one and if you can still remember stuff from the original then I’d suggest that you don’t bother with this one Discarding the entire backdrop of Mars didn’t help too. Anyways, I give Total Recall a so-so 2 out of 5. If you really don’t have anything else to catch as the summer blockbusters come to a trickle then I guess it’s worth it just for Kate Beckinsale.

The Dark Knight Rises (Movie Review)

The Dark Knight Rises

The Dark Knight Rises

Ka-Pow! Christopher Nolan’s highly anticipated closure to his Batman saga is a great one but personally it wasn’t as mind-blowing for me because I couldn’t help but reference Heath Ledger’s performance in the last movie. The cast does a stellar job here but not one of them could stand up to the The Joker; who is hands down one of the greatest villains to grace the silver screen.

The Dark Knight Rises is still a great watch nevertheless because the events of the movie are pretty epic and it raises a lot of questions about morality & sacrifice. Unlike The Amazing Spider-Man, the latest Batman flick is a thinking man’s superhero movie and a whole lot more realistic in its setting which I didn’t enjoy as much cos’ it kinda depressed me a little.

The entire cast holds their own here. Christian Bale does a decent third outing as Bruce Wayne but I felt that his supporting cast really outshone him throughout most of the movie. Tom Hardy makes for a super-menacing Bane whilst Anne Hathaway really stole the show in exquisite manner as Catwoman. Joseph Gordon-Levitt deserves a special mention too as rookie cop John Blake.

Christopher Nolan has given us a satisfying ending to his trilogy of Batman movies and I’m pretty sure most fans will not be disappointed by this one.

I give The Dark Knight Rises a back-breaking 4.5 out of 5.