Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Needed at outlet after reading Judges.

Judges is so sad to read. The continual unfaithfulness of Israel. God provides appointed Judges to deliver Israel in righteousness, but they are full of faults. God is supremely faithful, Israel continues to be superbly unfaithful. This is what happens what everyone does what is right in his own eyes (Judges 17:6; Judges 21:25).

Israel needs a truly righteous human King. 

I am just like the Israelites. I am continually unfaithful. I need a truly righteous human King. And I need to stop doing what is right in my own eyes, but in that of God. Thank goodness I have a truly righteous divine human King. I need Jesus.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Thankful For...

Making a record of things I am truly thankful for... because there really are so many things to be thankful for.

Today: Activities I Enjoy

1) Batting Cages
The whole experience of swinging the baseball bat and making contact (...okay... sometimes making contact) is exhilarating. Such a fun, stress-relieving, thought-provoking or even thought-clearing, endorphin-releasing, enjoyable activity. I love it.
Very thankful for hand-eye coordination (the little that I have), able body & arms that swing, and the fun I can have doing this even when alone.

2) Jogging (...that being no more than 5 miles).
What?! Really?! Jogging in nice weather is amazing. Nice weather like tonight beckons me to run. Of course... at my own pace... with plenty of breaks.... with nice music or a good sermon. Nothing makes me more thankful for my legs and able body than jogging. I know that one day I won't be able to run as I do now. Trying to enjoy it now while I can. Feels so free and relaxing (except for when your side aches). Feels good.

3) Eating
Need I say more?! I may have no sense of smell, but my my am I thankful for tastebuds and a big belly that can hold large quantities of delicious food. I am not promoting gluttony... I am just promoting good food... the heavy eating and savoring of food that makes your tastebuds extremely happy. Wow.

4) Reading
Trying to get back into fiction books (working slowly but surely). But the genre of choice for me has definitely been biographies (of people and events). Boring you say?? No way! I don't know whose lives and stories you've been reading about...but the lives and stories of people I've read have been absolutely fascinating. There are lots to learn from these people who have passed. The life of Jim Elliot, Charles Spurgeon, Corrie Ten Boom, Denver Moore & Ron Hall (much less known), Chris McCandless... endless list.
Thankful that I can learn from these lives. Thankful that I have eyes (small as they are) that see words on pages. Thankful for a brain that takes in information and processes it and learns from it.

There is much to be thankful for.

Monday, April 2, 2012


Healthy bones. Good muscle movement. Legs that work. Arms that lift. Hands that write. Fingers that type. Knees that bend. Toes that keep me balanced. Shoulders that carry weight. Back that doesn't give out. Eyes that see clearly. Brain that works sharply. Mind that thinks often. Heart that's still teachable. God-given inner-drive.

Better use them now while I still have them. Such great gifts of youth. Not wasting them. Thanks God.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sunday take-aways

Mark 10:42-50
(verse 42)
You are either steering someone towards Christ, or steering someone away. Those are the only two options.

(verse 43, 45, 47, 48)
A doctor doesn't hesitate to cut off or amputate a limb if it means saving his patient's life. He doesn't think twice if he knows it will save from destruction.

(verse 49-50)
The way to avoid steering others away from Christ to the fires of hell is to salt yourself and set yourself ablaze on fire as a living sacrifice of service to the king and to each other.

Very blessed by the baptism testimonies.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Lessons from Fridays

Today is the last Friday I will ever experience in the normal Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm working world. It's the last Friday I will have in this cozy office of mine which I must start cleaning out soon. And it's the last Friday that can teach me lessons about... well... life.

Fridays are often looked upon with a lot of excitement and joy. Everyone wants to end a boisterously busy workweek to start a perfectly peaceful weekend. Offices everywhere have at least one person saying, "TGIF" to a co-worker at least once every Friday. At my work, I am that person. 

I love Fridays. And even greater are the Friday Holidays I don't have to go to work (Cesar Chavez Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving-...I know you keep track too). But as much as I look forward to this day, the reality of it is that good old fun Friday will always come to an end... in 24 hours. Fun Fridays become Fleeting Fridays. And so before this Friday fleets away, I want to celebrate my last Friday by posting some lessons this day of the week taught me about life. So... here we go.

Lessons from Fridays
1) There are always good/better days ahead.
We've all had tough workweeks (if not, where do you work?!) - the kind that gets you tired, exhausted, and pondering why you even do what you do. But no matter how badly busy and seriously stressful it gets, there is a glimmer of hope that shines through your eyes (even if they are super small like mine) when you think about Friday. The thing about Friday is that even if you're having a bad Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, you know Friday is coming with promise of rest. Fridays never fail you - it has and will always show up. And so Fridays teach me that there are always good days ahead. Of course we have bad days and times of hardship and busyness... but trials will end, rest will be provided, and relaxing days are sure to come. It might take a while, but it always shows up. Fridays teach you that there are always better days ahead and that's surely something to keep you going and enduring.

2) Press the brakes and take some breaks.
Fridays teach me that it's okay to take breaks. You always have something to take care of, something to accomplish, somewhere to be, but you also need to press the brakes and take some breaks. Rest is not forbidden - it is allowed and encouraged. Breaks will refresh you and help you to be much more productive when you go back to tackle your work. Can you imagine how ineffective you would be if you worked every single day - 7 days a week? Take a break. Enjoy family and friends and take care of other things. Take a breather, enjoy what you have and the people around - it's okay.

3) Finish Strong.
The biggest temptation when I see the end nigh is to slow down, be slothful, and finish weak. But friends, you don't finish your week by finishing weak (I'm getting really punny around here). Fridays teach me to discipline myself to finish strong. Fridays are unique in that though it marks the beginning of much needed rest, it still contains 8 hours of work. So, just because it's Friday does not mean you get to rest. Don't press the brakes until it's time to take the breaks (punny punny). Finish your work strong - it'll make your time of rest feel much more deserved and you'll start it off feeling accomplished and able.

Well... there are more but I must do my last work meeting ever soon so we'll just end here. Working life Fridays - it has been a good two years. Thank you for all your lessons.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Lessons from Mondays

Today is the last Monday I will ever experience in the normal Mon-Fri; 8am-5pm working world. It's the last Monday I have in this cozy office of mine which is like a 2nd home by now. And it's the last Monday that can teach me lessons about... well... life.

Mondays are often looked upon with a lot of grief and dread. No one wants to end a perfectly peaceful weekend (does that even exist?) to resume a boisterously busy workweek (definitely exists). But the reality of it is that good old mean Monday, with the exception of Holidays (Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day - ...I know you keep track too), will always come. And though sometimes I do dread the menace Mondays bring, I am thankful for the lessons that Mondays teach.

I've been journaling what Mondays have been teaching me about life and such and want to celebrate my last Monday by posting some of those lessons here on my entry-deprived blog. So... here we go.

Lessons from Mondays
1) You can't outrun your responsibilities.
I'm sure I'm not the only one who has thought on Friday: it's the end of the week and I'll just hold off on this one! I've done that a lot in my short 2 years of working here. But the first thing Mondays teach me every morning when I sit down on my office chair is that I cannot run away from my problems and my responsibilities. It's always waiting for me when I return.... I'm going to have to take care it eventually. So... take care of it. Or else it's like the tortoise and the hare story - you are the hare and your work is the tortoise (spoiler: the tortoise wins the race).

2) You have responsibilities.
Mondays teach me that I have things I need to take care of. That I do need to get up and get somewhere or accomplish some task. That though the weekend was a time of needed rest, I have duties, responsibilities, and actual things I'm entrusted to do. It reminds me to get to work and be active rather than to be slothful and lazy. I need that boost and reminder... or else I would be accomplishing very little. Rain or shine, you must still rise. For this lesson, I am thankful.

3) You must get enough sleep.
My brave friend used to say that 'Sleep is weakness entering the body. I'll sleep when I'm dead.' That same friend once stayed up for 3-4 days straight and then suddenly knocked out for a full 24 hours. He has never repeated his statement since.
Mondays are probably the most sleep-deprived day of the workweek because Sundays are the hardest days to discipline yourself to sleep. This is probably due to many reasons like late Friday nights, which lead to Saturday sleep-ins and Saturday sleep-lates, which lead to the post-church nap (I can't be the only post-church napper), which lead to not tired Sunday nights, which lead to the Sunday stay-ups which lead to tired Mondays. Tiresome Mondays are not fun, especially with much to do. So Mondays teach me the importance of sleep and to discipline myself to sleep. I need it and am dependent on it because I am a weak creature. Therefore I have to discipline myself to sleep because 'sleep is strength entering the body' so that I can face Mondays.

4) Coffee works magic.
Mondays teach me that you will fail Monday lesson #3 very often. But, not to worry, there is an alternative solution called, 'coffee.' Absolutely amazing. I will let a comic strip I made do the talking for me here.

5) Work is a Grace Gift.
Yes, in all honesty, sometimes I absolutely dread coming into work on Mondays. But I think the biggest thing Monday mornings teach me is to chill, take a breath, and realize what I have. Every single Monday (no matter how stressful or dreadful) reminds me that I have a job with which I can support myself, pay the bills, and even save. It reminds me that my employment is a privilege and a grace gift. I do not deserve it at all and I am absolutely thankful that I have it. I have an amazing office that I love (full-loaded with a sling-shot and stress target), amazing co-workers who are fun and hard-working, and an amazing sick/vacation time and benefits package. It has been a good 2 years. Work has truly been a privilege.

Well... Working life Mondays - it has been a good two years. Thank you for all your lessons.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

If He does not exist, then Pity me


I've been pondering the life of Paul as I study his dying words in the epistle of 2Timothy. I can't believe the adventures Paul has been through by the time he writes this letter - from Persecuting Pharisee to the Appointed Apostle, Paul's life has had its fill of hardships. And after recapping his 2Corinthians11 list of troublesome journeys, he is finally near his end... awaiting his execution in a jail.

And thus this is perhaps why I don't understand when people say, 'Believe in Jesus, because if He exists and is God then you are going to heaven. But, if He does not exist, at least you've lived a good life.' Ever heard that before? I'm sure I'm not the only one. All I can say to that with all my heart's passion is, 'No.'

At the end of Paul's life as he reflects as a lonely man in his cold uncomfortable prison, jailed for the gospel, he can confidently say that it was all worth it. He can reflect on his life and say, 2Tim4:7 - 'I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.' (Amen brother Paul). What you do not find him saying is, 'Well, when I die I'll go to heaven and if I don't, then at least I've lived a good life.'

Are you kidding me? That is the last thing Paul would say. I cannot imagine Paul even coming close to saying such a statement. I cannot imagine Paul saying - 'If Christ does not exist, if He did not rise from the dead, at least I've lived a good moral life.' To the contrary, what I do clearly remember him declaring is, 'If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.' (1 Cor 15:19).

If it was just about morals... if it's just about following Christ's teaching in this life, but He never died nor rose from the dead, then pity me beyond anyone else. I have lived my life for nothing and for no cause.

Christians cannot adopt the saying above ('if He does not exist at least we've lived a good life'). We cannot adopt it because it is not true and because it is not about morals. It is about Christ. This isn't some easy road we're all on. This is a road filled with hardships and persecutions (2Tim 3:12), of self-dying and self-sacrificing for the sake of Christ. This is a hard long-endured long-fought life where family members become persecutors, friends become foes, and giftings become 'a waste of talent'.

There is no option 2 for the true believer. Believe in Christ because He is God. He is the way, the truth, and the life. He did die for your sins. He did rise from the dead 3 days later. And He does work in you and cause your heart to repent and turn to Him. Believe because He is.

I'm sold out. The gospel is true. That's why I believe. If I am wrong - then for goodness sakes this was not the good life. There is no safe way out for me. If I am wrong - then pity me for I am of all people most to be pitied.

But save your pity... God's Word is never wrong.