Growth: Uncertain belief still counts as knowledge…


So Insensitive…
May 28, 2006, 4:32 am
Filed under: Life in general, Prayer, Relationships, Worship

I've realized, I've just been highly insensitive, unsenstive, and etc as of late…  How does God show me the error of my ways?  He brings back the past to show me what I need learn to deal with…  it seems the past always has a way of catching up.

"Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.

Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain."

– Philippians 2:12-17

I'm not doing things selflessly right now…  I'm just questioning things…  In my internship search, in my relationship with mon, in whatever…  I'm just questioning (not in a good way, in a selfish way). 

Today's worship during Toby Tam's wedding (lol) really showed me the err of my ways.  I miss worshiping God and lifting of Jesus with all my heart…  now I hope that it will accompany my body and strength and mind as well…  I need to hold fast to the word of God which is my life.

Like on my msn name as of recent says, "Worshipful heart requires self-control"…  I pray the HS works His good fruit of self-control in me… 

Oh God, may Your grace truly abide in me…



Donald Miller on “love as a commodity”
May 23, 2006, 8:24 pm
Filed under: Church, Emerging

I ran across Steve K. McCoy's blog "The reformissionary" and I just loved this quote he got from Donald Miller (Author of "Blue Like Jazz" and etc) in an interview with the "Out of Ur" blog:

You've said that the church "uses love as a commodity." What do you mean?

Miller: We sometimes take a Darwinian approach with love—if we are against somebody's ideas, we starve them out. If we disagree with somebody's political ideas, or sexual identity, we just don't "pay" them. We refuse to "condone the behavior" by offering any love. This approach has created a Christian culture that is completely unaware what the greater culture thinks of us. We don't interact with people who don't validate our ideas. There is nothing revolutionary here. This mindset is hardly a breath of fresh air to a world that uses the exact same kinds of techniques.

Man, I think he hits it RIGHT on the money.  Like even though I hear a prominent theologian like Al Mohler say something similar, he doesn't go further in OFFERING love but I feel sometimes although we are to live by the truth of the Bible, the conservative slant never talks about the "HOW" to love…  Cultural engagement is needed to be realized and I hope we dive in with both feet.



What to do about families?
May 22, 2006, 5:45 pm
Filed under: Life in general, Prayer, Relationships

Recently some close people in my life have expressed that they are having internal family issues.  It's been tough to hear of dreaded family issues that tear people apart and directly affect the people I know…  It's like a helpless feeling y'know?  Like you want to do something but you can't?  You want to comfort your friends, but they sometimes don't need solutions but just support?

Sensitivity and grieving have never been a strong suit of mine…  When I think about serving my brothers and sisters I always feel there needs to be a "DOING" factor, some kind of action involved on my part to make the situation better…  but that only gets you so far.

Prayer.  Praying has always been something that has been taught in the church.  Pray for your struggles, pray for someone else's struggle, pray for blessing, pray for…  But really, how POWERFUL has prayer been lately?  Has God been answering your prayers immediately?  Something interesting I've been thinking about is if prayers is not so much a means to get what YOU want versus returning back to close personal relationship with the Lord Most High…

Dear God,

Please keep the families of my friends in your hands.  You are the God who is unchanging and always in control.  We are sinful people who do sinful things and affect others with that sin, but please let your justice flow, your grace abound and your mercy endure forever in our lives.  Please comfort the broken, love the hurting and help my will be changed and aligned to Your will Father God.

In Jesus name I pray for all of us,

Shu



Who are you God?
May 19, 2006, 9:50 pm
Filed under: Worship

Michael Gungor – Ancient Skies

You have never changed your love is endless and your mercy has remained, through all the ages you shine so bright. Nothing can compare you made the heavens, and your glory fills the earth. Through all the ages you ride the ancient skies.

And you ride the Ancient Skies, You're amazing.
Creation cries and so will I, You're amazing.

You have never changed, Your love is endless, and Your mercy has remained, through all the ages you shine so bright. Nothing can compare you made the heavens and your glory fills the air, through all the ages you ride the ancient skies.

And you ride the Ancient Skies, You're amazing.
Creation cries and so will I, You're amazing.

Now we stand amazed. And we will sing the word they sang in ancient days. A single word that's flowing in this praise… hallelujah

I'm thinking of starting up a little series of blogs here and there about my thoughts on who God is.  This is something that has just randomly sparked at me just now in the empty confines of my room and in the redundancy of school break… until I get an internship or job 😉

I'm currently listening to Michael Gungor's new EP cd called "Ancient Skies".  Just some background information, he co-wrote "Friend of God" with Israel Houghton, he has a jazz/classical guitar background in his academic studies, has a wife with a crazy voice, and he's pretty much fresh off his tour as "Acquire The Fire: Battle Cry" worship leader.

 Since listening to his music, I've always been fascinated with Gungor's musical ability and his spiritual thoughts through his website.  His lyrics have this way to make me think and his musicianship is in my opinion quite comparable to John Mayer or Lincoln Brewster…  vocally that's another story 😉

Anyways, back to "Ancient Skies", I searched biblegateway for a reference for "ancient skies" and I found it in Psalm 68:33:

"…to him who rides the ancient skies above, 
who thunders with mighty voice."

(sidenote)…With all my critical thinking development from York and from Seminary, I've developed quite an open eye to things that could be polemics against God who has revealed Himself in the Bible and through Jesus.  For those not familiar with the word "polemic" please take the time to drop by dictionary.com and look up the word polemic  I felt like at first the words "ancient skies" could be a weird twist on the Greek God Zeus as he rides the clouds and strikes lightning/thunder on people :p (end sidenote)

Reading the psalm more closely, I started realizing what Gungor was singing about.  David wrote this Psalm and it's a pretty long one, it bounces along different themes such as asking God to be warrior and do justice against the enemies of God.  It shows that God is always the ruler of all the earth and He will triumph.  I read a commentary about this and the title the author gave this psalm was "God is a Father to the Oppressed".  In my own opinion, I've found it quite interesting how David, as a mighty ruler of the Kingdom of Israel, could've easily put himself on a pedestal, but instead chose to sing of the high Lord of the kingdoms of earth.  If you read the psalm and specifically vs.32-35 it's such an elegant use of words to declare who God is:

– A God who created and rides the ancient skies, which implies He has full control over the skies which have been there forever and is STILL HERE TODAY! 

– How His mighty voice THUNDERS and His power is in those always present (and ancient) skies. 

– Praise is given to the One who gives Justice, shows mercy and is the power and strength of His people. 

– We stand amazed at the creator and join in with voices from the ancient days and sing "Praise be to God" or Hallelujah!



Time to “shut dee mouth!”
May 18, 2006, 3:27 am
Filed under: Church

I was talking with mon and I think I'm in dire need to be silent on some topics due to church and my opinions…  I'm a person that wants to give my opinion a lot and speak truthfully from the word but more and more I've come to realize I'm not a great communicator (at least for now) and I need to spend more time in silence.

I think I learn best from Ken in terms of his silence and thoughtfulness.  Sometimes you just can't convince someone, I will just pray God will do His thing…

Time to shut my mouth and practice my thoughts :p



Sem Student in Transition…
May 17, 2006, 6:46 am
Filed under: Church, Life in general, Relationships, Worship

Well, I'm in the process of transferring to Tyndale Seminary in Toronto and it should be going smoothly.  My biggest concern right now is to apply for an internship in a church for this summer.

For now, I am applying to certain chinese churches in Toronto through some personal connections and I hope to be able to intern in terms of helping with a worship ministry.  I think one of the hardest things is to intern at a chinese church and not expect to be a "jack-of-all-trades" for them.  I know a lot of churches that have a lot of needs that need fulfilling…  but to be honest, I'm not sure I want intern in terms of helping with VBS, youth ministry, short-term mission trips, and etc…

Worshiping God (especially in service or through music) has always been a big part of my life and with my past year of seminary training in worship, I hope to be able to share some more of what I've learned with my fellow bros and sis…  but alas, only God knows.

Anyways, on a side note, re-integrating back in to Toronto is going to be a little bigger of a challenge than I thought…  I think I want to really invest my life into a church and for now, I don't want to just go back to TCBC to just "drop by" and leave just as quickly if I can get a position elsewhere…  But ya, I hope the Lord will provide opportunities for me to glorify Him the way He intends for me to in Toronto.

…and btw, friends, call me if you want to talk and get a coffee 😉  I'm a little chubbier I'm told :p

 Peace!