mardi, janvier 31, 2006

blinding headache. i can't deal. i want to vomit. time for bed. the earliest i can't even remember when.

haha insane day today. i'm glad i stayed at the library till 11 last night to study...because there was NO time in the day today!! let me share with you, because i know y'all are just SO fascinated.

10:30 leave house
11:00 meet Christine and Robyn to plan Valentine's Day outreach
11:45-12:50 project Challenge--speaking at Johnny's DG about projects
1:00-2:00 prayer meeting
2:00-2:15 go to library to book a study room
2:30-3:15 project Challenge--speaking at Christine's DG about projects and Valentine's Day outreach
3:30-5 discipleship time with Camille
5:00-6:30 Discipleship group
arrive home 7:00.

insanity. haha it was go-go-go all day. now its time to study.

lundi, janvier 30, 2006

its hard to acknowledge that i can't do everything, when i expect myself TO do all that needs to be done.
no wonder i have difficulty showing grace. for goodness' sake, i don't even know how to show myself grace.

i think my discipler thinks i'm a total emotional nutcase. *sigh* good thing she had keenex.

now, after a 13 hour day on campus, i'm going to stop blogging and get more work done.

dimanche, janvier 29, 2006

i was walking home from campus today (ended up going to my group meeting for the tail end of it), and the air was so refreshing. gorgeous. drizzly and grey, but beautiful weather. lovely for walking and contemplating things.

as i was walking home, i realized that i love the place where i'm at. its been a long time getting to this place--almost 2 years of dissatisfaction with singlehood (though i would have never admitted it) and many knotty periods of time with respect to the foreign gender.
of course, there have been periods of time when i've adamantly declared that being single is amazing..but it has never been like this before. i really can't describe it. the freedom to be someone's sister and impart advice with no other motive other than loving my brothers is amazing. the freedom from expectations and hopes other than those i have in Christ is so terrifyingly beautiful. the ability to invest my time wholly in serving God and serving those around me is humbling. the opportunities to serve in my singlehood are endless, limitless and resplendent.

the best thing is knowing that if someone asked me to enter into a relationship today, i would be able to say NO and not regret it whatsoever. there will be a day in the future (Lord willing) when i'll enter into a different stage of my life--one where i will serve and glorify God as a wife, mother and married woman.
But that day has not come yet. So until then, i resolve to thoroughly enjoy this place where i am at, making wise and solid investments with my time, my life and my love as a single child of God.

[edit: i should've studied harder tonight, but i just had an awesome time talking on the phone with sara dub and shelly. so wonderful. i love my girlfriends. some of my best friends featured below!]

i have a skill. a skill that involves something not unlike that of fried rice. ha. amazing! yum fried rice.
pri and i have the ability to take over the world with my fried rice ability and her curry and roti making ability.

yes!!! huzzah.

samedi, janvier 28, 2006

at the beginning of this semester, i resolved to keep the sabbath day free of any school work or ministry planning. And, to my surprise, i've actually been able to keep it that way thus far. So when my group for Peace and Conflict Studies proposed an all day planning meeting for tomorrow, i e-mailed them right away and told them i would not be able to make it seeing as it is the sabbath day.
at the same time that i was firing off that e-mail, i realized that my group is going to think that i'm just lazy (there have been comments flying around) and when it comes time for peer evaluation i am going to score low on that. And thus, i began to doubt if what i did was a good move.

But as i sit here, i realize this: i made a commitment to GOD to keep the sabbath day free! To use every sunday as a day where i can really dedicate some quality time to Him. Why should i feel guilty about that? My group members ought to respect my religious beliefs--they would if i followed Islam or Judaism or any other religion. And even if they don't, why should i care? What does a mark on a peer evaluation matter in light of eternity? It doesn't really.

anyways what do y'all think?

dimanche, janvier 22, 2006

today was a bit of a frustrating day for me--partly because of my pride, but mostly because i was just disappointed.

in sunday school and in conversing with different people i came to the realization that we, as Christians, so often allow what the world thinks to influence what WE think. We use thoughts from the secular world and then attempt to mould thoughts from the Bible TO those thoughts. i admit that i do this all the time, without even realizing it. i came to the conclusion today that so often i put my trust in what the World tells me before putting my trust in what God has told me.

sure, there are those who say, "if it is the truth, it will stand up. the Bible isn't necessarily needed to defend the truth." This statement however, seems to me to be rather illogical. i agree, it would be true if we weren't sinners and therefore ALWAYS had the ability to sift truth from lies. But the fact is, we are indeed fallen, we have fallen short of the glory of God, and are therefore imperfect beings, and consequently NEED the working of the Holy Spirit and God's Word to give us guidance. Truth cannot be determined independently of God:

Psalm 111:10 -- the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
Proverbs 1:7 -- the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.
1 Corinthians 2:14-- The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.

it saddens me to think that often times we come to the Bible with a presupposition and then attempt to fit what the Bible says with what our worldy and carnal presuppositions dictate is true. Should it not be the other way round? FIRST we must fear God! THEN comes wisdom, knowledge and understanding. Oh, how often i forget this.

An example of this is evolution and the creation of the world (which we discussed today at church). There are those who believe that the world could be millions of years old, whereas i am (FIRMLY) rooted in the belief in a literal six day, (~24 hour day) creation. who is right (even though i believe that the Bible is pretty clear in a literal 6 day creation--i won't elaborate but if you do have questions feel free to ask), really isn't of super importance--there will be things we shall never understand until Christ returns. What is important is this:

Why would any Christian want to take man’s fallible dating methods and use them to impose an idea on the infallible Word of God? Christians who accept billions of years are in essence saying that man’s word is infallible, but God’s Word is fallible!

This is the crux of the issue. When Christians have agreed with the world that they can accept man’s fallible dating methods to interpret God’s Word, they have agreed with the world that the Bible can’t be trusted. They have essentially sent out the message that man, by himself, independent of revelation, can determine truth and impose this on God’s Word. Once this ‘door’ has been opened regarding Genesis, ultimately it can happen with the rest of the Bible.

You see, if Christian leaders have told the next generation that one can accept the world’s teachings in geology, biology, astronomy, etc., and use these to (re)interpret God’s Word, then the door has been opened for this to happen in every area, including morality.

Yes, one can be a conservative Christian and preach authoritatively from God’s Word from Genesis 12 onwards. But once you have told people to accept man’s dating methods, and thus should not take the first chapters of Genesis as they are written, you have effectively undermined the Bible’s authority! This attitude is destroying the church in America.

So, the issue is not ‘young Earth’ versus ‘old Earth,’ but this: Can fallible, sinful man be in authority over the Word of God?
A ‘young-Earth’ view admittedly receives the scoffing from a majority of the scientists. But Paul warned us in 1 Corinthians 8:2, ‘And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.’ Compared to what God knows, we know ‘next door to nothing!’ This is why we should be so careful to let God speak to us through His Word, and not try to impose our ideas on God’s Word.It’s also interesting to note that this verse is found in the same passage where Paul warns that ‘knowledge puffeth up.’ Academic pride is found throughout our culture. Therefore, many Christian leaders would rather believe the world’s fallible academics, than the simple clear words of the Bible.

(bold= my editing. taken from an article by Ken Ham from Answers in Genesis)

anyways, evolution is just one example of the way in which many Christians have trusted more in what the world dictates than what the Bible says (irregardless of who is right and wrong) but other issues came up in the car ride home, such as abortion, voting etc. These are huge topics, and i don't claim to have all the answers--in fact, i have almost none. Who is right or wrong really isn't of importance. What is important is that we are basing our beliefs on the inerrant Word of God, rather than the fallible thoughts of mankind. it is CRUCIAL that that which we believe is deeply rooted and entrenched in the Word.

[edit: i've transferred over some comments from my xanga where i also posted this because i thought they were interesting ^_^]

vendredi, janvier 20, 2006

the end. (of the fast i mean.)

142 hours during which i really did gain more of Him.

i still have to gather my thoughts. but God is an amazing God.

jeudi, janvier 19, 2006

6 people. for as long as it takes.

the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

oh that i would not forget or give up. let me believe that HE is more committed to His glory than i.


On a somewhat lighter note, in posting those pictures--the earliest of which are my high school grad almost 3 years ago--i was shocked to find that adam could be right. its like i haven't aged or something. the harsh reality: i look like i'm still in high school. maybe thats why everytime i go back to my old high school teachers don't give me a second glance. maybe i should start dressing in business casual attire like the rest of the people in my program dress.

beautiful words.

By faith the people crossed the Red Sea as if on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned. By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.

And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets-- who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated-- of whom the world was not worthy--wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.

~ Hebrews 11:29-40

lundi, janvier 16, 2006

good times.

dimanche, janvier 15, 2006

Today, i examined the character of Tabitha/Dorcas found in Acts 9. If you haven't checked it out, she was also a quality, solid woman ^_^

The first thing we must note in this section of Acts 9 is that her description begins right away with the fact that she was a disciple. This is noteworthy because this verse is the only New Testament occurrence of the feminine version of the Greek word for disciple.

The second thing that must be recognized is that she is addressed by two names: Tabitha and Dorcas. Tabitha was her Aramaic name and Dorcas, her Greek name--this implies that she was known by BOTH Jewish and Greek members of her community.

v. 36(b) also states that she was full of good works and acts of charity--here was a woman committed to "advancing the happiness of others (C. McCulley)" The life she lived and her committment to the community is emphasized even more after she has passed away. Luke details the events after her death--mainly the church in Joppa sending two men who URGED Peter to come back with them, without delay. The church in Joppa loved Tabitha SO much, they sent people to beseech Peter to return with them.

This obviously means that her death was significant to the church there. Dorcas was no ordinary woman. She was a servant of the community, full of good works and acts of charity.

Peter then proceeds to pray and through the power of the Holy Spirit, Tabitha is raised from the dead. This news was heard throughout all Joppa (v. 42) and many believed in the Lord.

From this testimony there are two principles which can be applied to our lives:

1. Tabitha/Dorcas played an important role AS the helper she was designed to be (Gen 2:18) and because of her servant's heart was influential in her community. As a woman, i have been given the task of being "others' oriented"--i should desire to do good works and acts of charity which stem from my love for God and my love for people. oh, that i would embrace who i have been called to be! a helper!
in saying this, i hope that women who read this do not take offense. The role of a helper to men does not mean inequality, and it does not mean we, as women are inferior. Rather, to quote R.C Sproul "helper entails a man's inadequacy, not the woman's inferiority."

2. The second principle is this: the way in which we interact with our communities and show love to those around us will impact how effective our sharing of the gospel is. The hope is that in seeing our lives, and the miracles Christ has done in our hearts, many will believe.

(keep me in prayer! Day 1 of fasting is almost over. Pray that i would resist temptation and grow deeper in my hunger for God ^_^. thanks guys!)

well the week of relaxation before things get crazy is now over. went for a date with God at second cup on friday. was good times.
God has been really good to me, a lot of exciting things are happening ministry wise and in my life. Acknowledging that i've been satiated by that which is ephermeral instead of seeking to be satiated by the enduring and everlasting God was all He needed to start working in my life.

My friend Darren has been fasting for awhile now, and in talking to him on msn, i was really convicted. For the past couple of weeks i've been contemplating fasting for an extended period of time (for me extended period means more than 2 days, since i've never fasted longer than that..i'm thinking 5 days?) but i've shrugged it off, admittedly for no good reason. Ashamedly, the nagging and persistent thought in my mind is--"but...i'll be hungry." i've forgotten that food isn't what satisfies. it may nourish the body, but even that is temporary. Only HE nourishes the soul and ultimately satisfies. He is what SHOULD sustain me, not His creation.
At any rate, talking to Darren challenged me, and so i've decided its time to stop being such a namby pamby and just DO IT! To quote Darren (okay seriously this brother never ceases to inspire me), "I'm not giving up something, but gaining more of Someone."

So i figure, while i give up food i may as well give up the other thing i use a lot--msn. so if y'all don't see me around for the next couple of days, that is why.

aights. keep me in prayer as i start ^_^ i'm looking forward to a renewed perspective on who God is and just spending some quality time getting to know His character more and fall in love with Him more.

vendredi, janvier 13, 2006

I've been taking a brief diversion from Jeremiah to look at characteristics of Biblical femininty by examining different godly women in the Bible and reading and listening to talks by Carolyn McCulley (all you single women out there, her blog is fantastic!). in reading through the Bible, i've never paid much attention to the character of Lydia in Acts 16. After all, this chapter is the only chapter in which she is mentioned and its easy to gloss over her ethos in focusing more on the "more important" characters such as Paul.
But during my date with God today i came to a deeper understanding of who this woman i was named after really was and how i can apply principles in her life to my own. Hopefully it will encourage other women who read this blog and guys too i suppose! if you make it through all of this..props!

i urge you to read Acts 16:11-40, but here's a brief synopsis (i hope i get it all right...) Paul had received a vision to preach in Macedonia and so immediately they "sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called [them] to preach the gospel to [the people in Macedonia]" (Acts 16:10). They proceeded to Philippi which was on the Macedonian plateau and was a region that was bustling with activity--a commercial meeting place, so to speak. "It dealt in agricultural produce of the rich plain and gold and silver mined from the surrounding mountains. Philippi had been made a Roman colony so it could serve as a home for retired army veterans after the decisive battle of the second civil war (42 B.C.) and the battle of Actium (31 B.C.). Bearing witness in Philippi was the closest thing to preaching in Rome without actually being there." (IVP New Testament Commentaries)

Knowing Paul, he followed the principle of "the Jew first" and would have expected and sought to speak to those in the synagogues first. However, they saw a group of women who had come together in the place of prayer and seized the opportunity to witness to the women.

One of the women in this group was Lydia and we are told in Acts that she was a "worshipper of God (v.14)" and that "the Lord had opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul." We are also told that she was from the "city of Thyatira [and was] a seller of purple goods." From this we can infer that Lydia was actually quite a successful business woman (during that time, purple dye was extremely expensive and a lucrative business endeavour). She hears what Paul preaches and the greek (this here is secondhand day i'll learn to read biblical greek) in v. 14 does not only mean that she was listening--it is an imperfect verb meaning 'sustained attention'-- she hung on to each word and was baptized, becoming the first european believer! Not only that, but she had such influence (nothing is mentioned about a spouse, so usually the assumption is made that Lydia was a single woman) that her household was baptized as well!

Immediately after her baptism she then invites Paul and company to her house to stay! Presumably this was where the first Church in Philippi began!

There are numerous principles from this testimony that i would like to apply in my life.
Firstly, if i have the right attitude, and my heart is in the right place, He will speak.
Lydia was a worshipper of God and because of this, the Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul.

Secondly, i have the capability to influence those in my sphere, therefore i should take the opportunity to do so.
It is noteworthy that Lydia is baptized and then the rest of her household as well.
" In ancient Greco-Roman society the household was the basic social, economic and religious unit. The typical household was large, including nuclear and extended family, slaves and economic retainers. "Roman households were united in a common religious cult (the Lares) irrespective of age or personal beliefs" (Green 1970:210). The conversion of this female head of a household, who was either single or a widow, has necessary religious and spiritual implications for the other members. And today we must be ever mindful of the strategic importance of social networks for the rapid spread of the gospel, for multi-individual household conversions can snowball into people movements (see Hulbert 1978; 1979)." (IVP New Testament Commentaries)

Thirdly, hospitality is one of the qualities the Proverbs 31 woman has, and so does Lydia. She was ready to use her home to further the gospel. She not only asks Paul to come to her house--it is not merely a flippant invite. She URGES and PREVAILS them to come. Talk about being ready to offer her home to further the gospel--this becomes the place where the first church in Philippi began!!

To me, this is a beautiful picture of what God can and will do through me, as a single woman, but even more importantly as His obedient follower.

mardi, janvier 10, 2006

its all a bit insane. getting back into the swing of things, i mean. i have a feeling God really wants to teach me about discipline this semester. with a full courseload, being on a diet, 2 DGs, coordinating weekly meetings, missions committee at church, worship team and ballet its going to be pretty hectic. Doable but hectic. Which means that i need to stick to the schedule i've prepared for myself. Making sure that i spend time in the Word--drawing my strength from the Holy Spirit and spending time studying instead of lazing around.

The character that really inspires me towards living a disciplined life (aside from Jesus) is Paul who declares in 1 Corinthians 9:27 (ESV), "But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified." What a picture this is! i too do not want to be disqualified from the race. The goal is to win the prize for which we have been called heavenwards in Christ Jesus. i desire to be an effective and wise steward of the time i have been given here on earth, that i may glorify the father.

Speaking of being an effective and wise steward with my time...its time i get back to studying and planning. tata!

Lydia's winter schedule

10-11 Class
11-1 Quiet time and Devotions
1-2 Cru Prayer
3-4:30 Discipleship with Janette
4:30-6 Leaders' DG
6-9 Class
10-12 Quiet Time and Devotions
1-2 Cru Prayer
3:30-5 Discipleship time with Camille
5-6:30 Girls' DG
Wednesdays (not really planned out thus far)
Class 10-11; 12-3; 6-8
10-12 Quiet Time and Devotions
1-3 Class
6-8:30/9 Weekly Meeting
10-11 Class
11-1 Quiet time and Devotions
1-2:30 New Christian DG
8-12 Worship Practice and prayer meeting at church (Quiet times and Devotions on the 2 hour ride to and from church)
2:15-3:45 Ballet
Quiet time and Devo at night.
the goal is to keep the sabbath free of any work. we'll see how that goes. Yikes.
afternoon: nap time and Quiet time/Devos

[edit: oh man, i forgot in planning my schedule that i didn't stick time in for going and doing randoms.i'll have to add that in.]

dimanche, janvier 08, 2006

have YOU registered to vote?

if not. do it. NOW.

(i'm pretty excited. going to get my special ballot tomorrow. it'll be my first time voting!! wex.)

vendredi, janvier 06, 2006

this new year is beginning to hurtle by at wondrous speeds. can it truly be? the first week of 2006 has almost come and gone, leaving me at the roadside pondering the age old question, "where has the time gone?"
Every 365 days at the beginning of the new year i am forced to think about the way in which the year has been spent--has my life been profoundly and deeply changed? Or is it nothing more than the banal? Indeed, it is horrific the amount of times i have grieved, for i feel as though i have wasted my year. This is partly why i no longer make new years' resolutions--i hate to see myself as a failure. And yet, with or without the resolutions, my mind returns to the past each year, and i feel disappointed. As though during the year something miraculous should have happened, some sort of tangible transformation.
This year is no different. In perusing through old blogs, i not only feel as though i have changed, i feel as though atrophy has occurred. Have i prodigalized? Perhaps.
Or perhaps, as the bar raises each year, i am brought to a deeper understanding of how my sin inflicted His wounds. As i draw closer to Him and see His magnificence, i am forced to realize my own depravity. Perhaps it is a little of both. The humanity in my bones dictates that i will stumble a great deal; my finite being has the capability to forget. It is a good thing that the infinite God calls me back. He awaits me. Delights in me. Oh, i am the prodigal son indeed.

Someday the miraculous year shall come. Behold, it shall be the year in which an enormous tangible transformation will occur. the year when i shall be given a new name. Until then, i'll have to make do with what i have, knowing when i do stumble, there is hope and faith in future grace.

mardi, janvier 03, 2006

haha quote of the day:

"hey i found your ancestors in the Bible today. Isaiah 66:19"~ N. Onifrichuk.

haha, i was confused. when i read my version it said nothing about the Lydians. Had to go back to the NIV to find it. but it gave me a good chuckle.


in other news. WHY THE HECK IS DIETING SO HARD? stupid doctor who told me i have to go on a diet. YARGH. anyone want to be my gym buddy?

dieting just gets me on this cycle of believing i'm fat and ugly.. as though, if i lost 10 pounds i'd suddenly become hot or something. sheesh.

lundi, janvier 02, 2006


a new year.

after the clock hit 12, i cried bitterly. tears of frustration at this heart of stone. of my wasted year spent satisfying myself with mud pies and raking leaves instead of feasting on His Word and digging for diamonds.
His silence has been frustrating, and life has been tautological. Because of my satisfaction with mediocre, i haven't been able to hear His voice as clearly as i should, and because of His silence, i haven't desired to do more than the mediocre...creating this circle of frustration.

But today, as i spent time dwelling in His Word, i was reminded of His promises:

Jeremiah 32:39
i will give them one heart and one way that they may fear me always."

Deuteronomy 20:6
and the Lord your God will circumcize your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, that you may live.

Ezekiel 11:19-20
and I will give them one heart and a new Spirit I will put within them. I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in my statutes and keep my rules and obey them. And they shall be my people, and I will be their God.

Jeremiah 32:41
and I will rejoice over them to do them good and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul.

what a sweet assurance. that He desires with ALL His heart and ALL His soul to give us hearts of flesh.