Tuesday, April 17, 2007


A further search on Google revealed the following:

Our Deepest Fear
by Marianne Williamson

from A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

The Dude....

I've always liked Samuel L. Jackson, the actor. There's always an intensity and a high degree of masochist grit to each of the roles that he portrays (save for that cheesy character of Jedi Master Mace Windu).

So I reached home tonight a little after 9, flicked the tube on, and there he was on HBO; the Dude himself. This time he was Coach Carter, a high school basketball coach with unorthodox means. I hadn't caught this one when it was released way back then; though I did have some inkling that it was based upon an actual person who lived on the other side of the planet. So I planted myself comfortably down on the sofa to be entertained for the next 90 minutes or so (minus the soda, the popcorn and the potato crisps coz hey, this isn't TGV, you know?).

Now, here's the twist for me. At the end of the show, though stellar as Sammy's performance was, I think another character nicked the best lines to the movie. That would probably explain why my thoughts kept wandering back to this one particular scene. It involved what one of his charges in the movie had recited, and I simply couldn't resist the urge to Google it. It goes like this....

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.

Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking,
so that other people won't feel insecure around you.

We were all meant to shine, as children do.
It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others."

Now, how's that for a super dose of self-empowerment. Or as a pastor well known to me recently said, "Cowabunga!" ;)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Animals go to heaven too....

An address in the Lord's kingdom

24 hours ago, in some kopitiam somewhere, a group of Christ followers sat down with a Reverend for supper (or was that dinner? NVM.) To some, this will probably sound even a little irreverent but somewhere in the midst of sharing, someone had said that animals go to heaven too when their time in this temporal world is done. Yes, yes, I know. I can hear it all the way from here too. The sound of a bobtailed zealot Christian going "What the f***??"

Anyway, "Yo bro', peace be with you too!" (not that I'd give a toss about what you think) but for those who likes animals like me-self, it gladdened my heart when I heard that statement. Coincidentally, only just a few days ago, I had gone into a Christian bookstore when I inadvertently caught a glimpse of something that caused me to backtrack 2 steps for a second look. It was a bookmark. Printed on it was a picture of 2 demure looking cats; one of which looked very similar to my beloved late Millemeow (darn, I miss that cat so much). It was just one look and I don't know what moved inside of me but I found myself uttering the words "Oooo..he's made it to heaven." And you know what? Forgive me for my self-indulgence but I felt comforted in that instance. Very, very.

So, call me "mou liu" or "sot plug" but as I sat down tonight reflecting on those 2 coincidences, I could not help but think of how kind God has been by creating this therapeutic space for me; by allowing these thoughts to form and to take shape so that I will have some means of closure. Thank you, Father.

By the way, the bookmark somehow found its way to the cashier's till and into Zhie Zhie's care, Mille. Maybe now she may find peace and be "complete" with her loss of you too. And if she did as I pray that she would, a blessed Easter this will certainly be indeed.


Monday, April 09, 2007

The Easter bunny gift.....

Last Sunday marked the beginning of the joyous Easter season. You can sense an air of festivity about it, and yours truly was very much in a gay mood over it; and with good reasons too.

The first was that I had reached my 1st year milestone as a reborn Christian; though not unscathed. Carrying the invisible mark of the cross on my forehead throughout that year, I was "roughed" up a little during the 1st half of the year but then as God's grace would have it, I was also allowed to be "polished" up a little as well in the latter stages. Hmmm... All in all, it's not been a bad year at all for a newbie Christ follower. Thank you Abba, for all the lessons that you have taught me and will continue to teach me. :)

But then I digressed; for the intention of today's article was not meant for self-celebration. Instead, most notably, it's meant to illuminate the rebirth of my 2 new Godsisters, Choo Ki and Parri; for whom I am certain that God will be please with. And how apt that they were chosen to be baptised on the same day as the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

"And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." - Romans 8:28

*Thanks Bob, for unknowingly providing me with this perfect chapter and verse a half hour ago. ;) The Lord is good and He provides for me. Amen.

** Ooops...left out a word of thanks to big Al-"bert" for supplying the pics. Sorry ar. Hehe... :)

End of Lent.....

Lent has ended. Whoopee!!!

Huh??? Whoopee??? This ought to confound the diehard Christians a little. Hehe... ;)

Not that I've fasted or held any indulgence in abeyance over the last 40 days (though I did try to curb my dependency on tobacco; for which, I'm sad to report that I've failed miserably again for the umpteenth time), but Lent is not exactly a period of "easy living", especially when church sermons and/or the diehard bunch keeps "quietly" reminding one about it; or worse, it becomes ingrained into one's subconsciousness. Akin a pesky fly swirling over decomposing flesh. Eeewww... yucks!

As an aside, that last metaphor reminded me of the Monkey God swotting away the fly scene from a Stephen Chow movie titled "A Chinese Odyssey Part One: Pandora's Box". An absolute riot that movie was. Hehe... :D

I know, I know. I've a warped sense of humour. So please indulge this sinner and go with my flow. If not, you may deem this as a nonsensical piece and stop reading it.


So as I was afore implying, Lent is not the easiest of period within the Christian calendar year for a Christian to be living in. Don't do this, can't do that, refrain, abstain, dll. As a reborn yearling, I'm half clueless about the key answers to this. An absolute donkey, I am, I admit. Maybe it's time to engage in more theological studies. Delve into "intellectual masturbation" (IM), so said my pal Al (sorry dude, I just can't help dragging your name into this but this terminology is far too descriptive and to much of a hoot to be left out.) :D

But seriously folks, would more reading and learning help? Far too often for someone like me, the greater the overload of information attained from devouring "deep" books, the more inane (or insane) I become. Thoughts become clouded, choices irrational and judgment erratic. I'll choke. The thing is I'll probably become far too embroiled in the "fluff" of the philosophy than to embrace the more important aspect of practising it. Worse, I may not even possess the required rudimentary foundation for grasping it in the first place. And so what happens next due to this unwarranted overzealouness is that I fall over the edge, plant a seed within myself to develop a 1st class skill for ranting, and eventually "de-church" myself and enrol into the darkside of the realm of Darth Vaders (or in this case, the pinky Hello Kitty Darths).

Ok, ok. This is not a pretty picture....and the pink is a very scary thought for a piece of macho skybalonhead like me. So with that, we can safely scratch this option off.

Ok. What next then? What are the alternatives for me and those like me? Well, this is what I think is open and available. For starters, let's begin by believing in ourselves. That we do not need to be armed by reading tons of literature to adequately fortify ourselves before we can start the simple task (yes, it's very simple actually) of spreading the Good News for others. Believe it or not but a long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there existed a school of thought that we begin best by beginning from where we are now and who we are now. That one need not be equipped by a vast ocean of God speak in order to touch the life of another and leave it better than when we found it. So, let's not give ourselves reasons that we can use to bind and stop ourselves. Let's not presume that without formal training or an overdose of theology, that we are handicapped from answering the Lord's calling. The Lord God has His reasons for everything that happens in each of everyone's lifetime. Who we are is just His instrument for making it happen; to bear and deliver His message.

Oh, by the way, when I made mention about a long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, I was making reference to a period in time from the past that is slightly more than 2k years ago. Back then, there was this bloke called Jesus, who by tapping the "source" of love that is within His heart, started a ministry where He miraculously touched the lives of countless many. Not too bad for someone with no formal training, huh? ;)

Enough said. Tap your source. Go touch someone's life.

Happy Easter, everyone.

Warmly yours,
An IM-less donkey

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Sure has been a long time...

As the title implies, I have been absent for a while now. I'm not a quintessential blogger anyway. I only write when I'm inspired, and these days, very, very few things inspire me.....except God and.....ermm....??? Okay. Maybe I should leave this part out.

I scooted off to Camerons with my pastor and another couple of church friends a week ago for a visit to an Orang Asli (OA) village. Returned the next day and a few days later, the Reverend sent me mail asking for my thoughts regarding the trip. So this posting is just to share a little about the trip. Anyway, this was how I replied.

What were your immediate thoughts and impressions after the visit?
Personally, this had been quite a revealing trip. Maybe it was catalyze by the company (read: fellowship) of you 3 other guys that kept me in the spiritual mode; and for that, I am very thankful.

Revisiting the OA village a second time, I learnt a lot more about myself as I learnt more about the former as individuals, as a group and as a community. Although much was not voiced out by them during conversations, I do sense some of their worries flowing undercurrent. I cannot know for certain what it may be. Could be it may be partly caused by the fact that their village population is beginning to dwindle (afterall, they are down to only 12 families living there now); maybe they are partly concerned over what the future holds for their next generation? Maybe other stuff, etc?

I very much enjoyed the overnight discussion we had at Lakeview. Certainly I must have savored it, for if not, I don’t think I could be kept awake till 5 o’clock in the morning. Besides, how often does one get to keep the company and pick the brain of his church pastor for some spiritual guidance and wisdom? Hehehe… ;)

Where did you "see" or "sense" God at work at Batu 20?
Maybe because I’m a “kaypoh” by nature, I think I was the first among us who walked to the back of the village where the church was located. And boy, was I surprised by the sight before me. Back from when I first visited the camp during BLC’s Aug/Sep ’06 Camerons retreat; back from when the church was nothing more than a zinc roof over four stilts with an earthen floor; I was stunned by what stood in front of me. Fui-yoo! My fellow BLC-ians should see it again now. God’s finished article.

Notwithstanding the visual impact, there were other instances. For one, how can one not remember to mention Pastor Timah for her dedication and commitment to the Lord’s calling? This lady’s ministry actually involve administering to 3 different churches in Cameron Highlands. Oh by the way, that’s the least of the things that she does that one should be impressed by. Wanna know how she moves around all 3 sites? Sites from which distance is not measured by the few hundred yards but by miles? No car. No motorbike. Just the pair of feet that she was born with. Personally, I can’t help but be awed as I watched her walked home after we bade our goodbyes. And yet, townfolks like us b**** about having to climb a few flights of stairs. Sigh….

How has this trip impacted you in anyway?
A recurring question kept popping up whenever I reflected over this trip…and it made me remorseful (and yet, grateful) in a certain way. The question is not important. What’s important is the realization to what that was asked, and that was “Why do we keep asking God for more when we already have so much?” Coincidentally, I read a friend’s (and soon to be God sister-in-Christ) blog posting today titled “My Poor God” (www.minishorts.net). A part of what she had written probably reflects upon the said question. So, I’ll just copy and paste it here. You guys can think about it and come to your own conclusions.

“Many folk-religionists I know are a strange lot, because their version of God is rooted in modern-day materialistic tendencies. 'If you burn enough paper gold coins, God will be very happy with you. For Pai-Thee-Kong, for example, you can never burn lesser gold than you prepared for last year. You really don't want to make God angry and unhappy.' Pardon me but it sounds more like bribing some heavenly kingdom God to take care of you. I suppose it's probably a very M'sian culture, with money, anything can. Even making God happy can be done by paying money. Oh and it seems to be that when God is happy, you will get more money. Religious piety is represented by the exterior blessings God provides, if you strike lottery, for instance, God has cast His favour upon you. Fall sick, or get into an accident, for example, and the rationale is probably that you displeased the Gods.”

What do you "hear" God saying to you and to us?

“Can we do more?” Did God say that? I think so.

On the one hand, the OAs are a blessed lot in the sense that because they are free of luxury items, expectations for more does not exist for them. However, on a social platform, they are quite deprived of basic amenities. I was very, very encouraged when I learnt that the church hall doubles up as a school classroom for the young ones; the OAs’ hope for tomorrow. But I was saddened when I discovered that these kids have no proper furniture or materials to aid them. They don’t even have a blackboard. And I’m naturally assuming that they are learning to read and write by sitting on the floor of the church hall. Imagine having to crouch over just to practice how to write.

Once again Abba Father, forgive me….but I feel ashamed for asking and wanting more.