Let’s wine about it.

I WANT TO WHINE ALL DAY. I hate people who whine, need attention, who are unclear of what they wanna do, yet that’s who I am at this present. I am sitting typing this because I don’t know what else to do. Correction: I know exactly what I should be doing but I am avoiding it because I lack sense of responsibility or discipline.

The reason why I am here typing instead of verbally bitching to my colleagues is because I want to train to shut myself up when I feel like complaining which is proving to be a very difficult task. Workplace complaint is bad for your environment because it easily becomes a habit. Even if you don’t really hate what you complaint about, you will eventually come to hate it because you’ve manipulated yourself to hate it. So the next time you feel an urge to bitch about something, catch that thought and flush it down the toilet. Unless you know it’s a legit issue that should be highlighted to your boss then by all means give that constructive contribution.

I’m very easily distracted as you can probably tell from the way I structured my paragraphs. I get bored quicker than average human. I remember getting bored eating a bowl of prawn noodle because there’s only one taste to it (did I really expect the flavor to change halfway through the meal?! I surprise myself sometimes). So I’ve been trying to focus at work from 9 am till now which explains why at 5pm my brain left the premise and I stared at the screen wondering why I can no longer concentrate on whatever I was doing.

This probably is a messy post to read, but it’s my way of gathering my thoughts without complaining to an actual person in front of my face (I’ve instead blogged and complained to billions of human with access to internet).

So yes, time to get back to work. I have 30 minutes left before the bell rings.

372a6c2117178e230df219f361e01db1--friday-meme-thursday-friday

Cheers,
Mel.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Life Series

Rejecting what is wrong.

I was doing my morning devotion when I read a verse in Psalm 36, “…Even on his bed he plots evil; he commits himself to a sinful course and does not reject what is wrong.

The last phrase (in bold) puzzled me. Why didn’t the bible say “he commits himself to a sinful course and does what is evil”?

It is because the act of not rejecting what is wrong is as evil as the act of doing it. When you’re not rejecting it, you’re participating in it.

I’ve read many news that outraged me recently but I’m a silent person. I don’t like rocking the boat or disrupting social media feed by posting my thought on current affairs while most of my friends post about their lives, food or babies.* When I read about the unrest in Charlottesville, I wanted to speak up but I started thinking Charlottesville is so far away from where I am. I’ve never even heard about that city until now. It seems whatever is happening there is none of my business and not going to affect my livelihood in this peaceful nation.

That’s exactly how the devil wants us to think. He wants us to turn a blind eye on world issues and continue to live our insulated life while the other part of the world wages war against evil.

We have to speak up when we see something reprehensible. You don’t have to be a Christian to condemn what the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists stand for but as a Christian, it is our mandate to reject it.

Sign off,
Mel.

*disclaimer: I love life, food and babies.  

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Life Series

Changing the world one word at a time.

I’ve been trying to write a new post for a while but I keep falling into the same cycle – “I’m going to write something today!” then I open my laptop, create a new draft, stare at the blank page for couple of minutes, surf the net for inspiration, stumble upon a cat video, forget what I was doing. When I realise time has been lost, I’d think “Man! Maybe I’ve lost that vision to be a writer. Maybe I’m not meant to write.”

Humans are capable of turning the simplest thing into full season of Emmy-winning drama. We like to be in control and feel like we’re making a difference with what we do.  I love writing but it’s not enough to put words into paper, I need to make the words come to life and crawl into your deepest, darkest heart, plant a seed and grow into an age-old tree and bear fruits to your next generations. I put so much burden into every word no wonder I ended up not typing anything.

I know people who are very intentional with the things they do and I admire them for it. But if you’re like me, a little scattered and easily distracted (basically an ENFP), don’t beat yourself up if you can’t think of a life changing action to take or story to tell. Start small and build up from there. Our approach to life shouldn’t be that complicated. While we strive to do our best we need to know that no one expects us to be perfect right away except our pride/ insecurities/ competitiveness/ Asian parents, maybe.

As you can see, I’m starting to write even when I don’t have the sentences in my head. But I know every post published will not be in vain because while it might not change the World, at least it brings clarity to myself and that’s good enough.

Quotefancy-470776-3840x2160

X,
Mel.

Leave a comment

Filed under Life Series

In response to: “Kami Cinta Indonesia. Tapi Buat Apa Kami Pulang Ke Indonesia?”

Indonesia, Asia’s sleeping giant, has recently been woken up by a man on a quest to clean up Jakarta with his straight-talk and no-corruption movement. What he is doing is unheard of in Indonesia where corruption has become part of our cultural identity, one that I abhor but at the same time benefit from.

This man, Pak Ahok, truly has the heart for the nation. He should be hailed as National Hero because he is unafraid of the “elite” gangsters and working his best to help the citizens who are unable to return him any favour. But instead he is put behind bars for deliberate blasphemy. While I can see why a Muslim can take offence of what he said but anyone should be able to tell the context of what he said was that voters should not be deceived by politicians hiding behind the religious veil and using that to manipulate people. It wasn’t a deliberate blasphemy. Besides, if someone said something negative about the bible I would defend it but I wouldn’t demand that person be locked up or cry for blood. We can have differing opinion and still co-exist that’s the whole point of democracy. Anyone with clarity of mind should be able to tell Pak Ahok has no ill-intention to the Muslim community. It’s just unfortunate that he was a marked man and his opponents were looking for reason to throw a grenade and they did.

For Ahok’s supporter, I can understand your disappointment, anger, or sadness. His sentencing to 2 years in prison is clearly a political play. How could the sentence be harsher than what the prosecutor demand for? I find the whole case just ridiculous. After the verdict, my Facebook timeline was flooded with posts expressing my friends’ disappointment and how some of them are ready to abandon their Indonesian passport or move to another country. Then I read an article of a letter by a student in Australia asking “Kami Cinta Indonesia, Tapi Buat Apa Kami Pulang Ke Indonesia?” (translate: We love Indonesia, but what for we come back to Indonesia?)

I grew up in Singapore and I’ve spent most of my life abroad. Every time someone asked if I have any intention to come back, I would say “what for?” or “not really”. I’m much more comfortable living in Singapore where rules are observed and values are sustained. In Indonesia everything is malleable. My friends say that what makes Indonesia creative and filled with opportunities but I find it just too much hassle. I like to keep my hands clean and enjoy the advantages of earning dollars, spending rupiah. Yes, I’m one of those hypocrites but if there’s anything that Ahok has stirred within me is the desire to come back to Jakarta.

Since Ahok came along I see how the nationalism towards Jakarta has improved among Indonesians around me. He brings glimmer of hope that Jakarta can be improved and become a city we are proud of, or willing to come back to. I always thought the slogan for Indonesia should be “Money is Power” but Ahok has a vision to help the less fortunate. As an idealist, I think that’s more important than thinking of how I can earn more for myself while watching the depressing news everyday and reading about the poor dying because they are denied of basic health care.

Now that Ahok is locked behind bars, the first thing that came to my mind was “Man. Jakarta need more people like Ahok to continue the fight!” We have an obligation to come back if we truly love the country. Honestly I don’t know if I love the country enough to leave the comfort of Singapore and if that’s what my calling at this point. Even if I come back I don’t know what good can I do to the country. Will I be joining a political party? If yes I need to be active? Am I willing to be active? Okay, this indecisiveness is my problem. Let’s leave it at that but I’m considering returning for good.

Ahok said “Kalian semua bisa memenjarakan Ahok, tapi kalian tidak bisa memenjarakan ide-ide saya.” (translate: You can put Ahok behind bars, but you can’t put my ideas behind bars.) Ahok may be in jail but we still have more people with his ideas. We need to rise up. We need to continue the fight. It’s time to stop mourning for Ahok’s sentence. The war is not lost. It has only started.

18402567_1450360101693813_342099833571588109_n.jpg

X,
Mel.

Leave a comment

Filed under Culture, Life Series

Are you open for Jesus Monday to Sunday?

You’ve heard about Sunday Christians. You see them on Sundays. They don’t get too involved with the church and if you bump into them on a weekday, they behave like a different person. You’ve also seen Devout Christians – people who follow God wholeheartedly and the familiar faces who show up at almost every church events.

Then there are Christians like me who are a little harder to distinguish. I attend service and small group, serve in church, read bible, and do whatever I can to inch closer to God. Yet when my leader texted if I’m coming to the church’s monthly Prayer Meeting on that very day, I hesitated. I’ve always thought Prayer Meetings are for the holiest members of the congregation because the people who attend are usually the devout and it falls on a Wednesday night. The latter might not sound like a solid reason but you see, I’ve planned God’s activities to be on Sunday and Friday – the days I attend church and small group.

So I started having a mental debate whether I should come to the meeting. The argument centred on the questions if I don’t go to church tonight, how will I spend my evening? Will it be more useful or meaningful? I’d spend time with my family at home which is a strong case because I don’t spend enough time at home, and I would be reading this book called Evidence for God: 50 Arguments for Faith from the Bible, History, Philosophy, and Science. Then I began to see the irony. I was about to choose to stay home and read about the evidence for God when I could be in church experiencing the evidence for God. I decided if I can get off work on time, I will make my way to church. And yes, God made it happen.

SURRENDER MY DAYS

Standing in the church hall that night made me feel out of place. I was not used to worshiping God in church among the “stronger” Christians on a Wednesday night. Sure I listen to sermon at home on weekdays but it’s not the same to seek God on your own time and comfort versus rearranging your schedule to be at His altar. I clapped and lifted up my hands during praise and worship like I usually do on weekends but deep down I was wondering if the awkwardness of being in God’s presence that night will go away. Finally I did what I need to do. I prayed and invited Jesus to be Lord over my life Monday to Sunday.

LIVE ON GOD’S TERMS

I wake up to pray and listen to sermon every morning, read a Christian book on my way to work, and read the bible at night. On the surface it seems like I have my spiritual life figured out. I even prayed for God to enter every room of my life but I didn’t realize I only hand Him the keys on Sundays and Fridays.

Is God a guest or is He the owner of your life? When we choose to live for God it means He holds the keys and has access to every room in your life. Matthew 16:24 says “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”  It doesn’t say to follow Him on a specific day because following Jesus is a 24/7 commitment. Jesus is not a counsellor or therapist whom you schedule your time with. He is the leader of our lives and He has the privilege to rearrange our schedule. We live under His terms and not the other way around.

OPEN WHEN HE KNOCKS

If I had said ‘no’ when my leader asked me to come to the meeting I wouldn’t be writing this. It wasn’t the first time my leader asked me to a church event, few of which I declined but there’s one thing I learn – I can keep saying ‘no’ to man, but I can’t say ‘no’ to Holy Spirit forever. Every time you say ‘no’ to God, you’re distancing yourself from Him and disobedience will eventually dull your spiritual senses. Unless you’re ready to live without God, don’t let yourself slips into a place where you’re no longer bothered by Holy Spirit’s prompting. The fact that you’ve read my writing to this point, I hope means that you have the desire to live out the life that God calls us to have and so let your heart be open to Him 24/7.

13bca418be643005a9b2f8ee72d391c2

Put up this sign for God. Photo Credit: Pinterest, Etsy.com

X,

Mel.

Leave a comment

Filed under Culture, Life Series, Spiritual Journey

The Conversation

Conversation is a window to the World different from mine. It changes my perspectives and there’s always something to learn from the different characters we meet. The past few weeks I am privileged to be able to have conversations with friends whom I haven’t met for a while, new acquaintances I come to admire, and people of higher position than I am who opened up themselves.

One of them is my couple-friends who are moving out of the country next month. They have 2 beautiful kids and they shared how they might someday adopt a child because they, especially the wife, just can’t see a child suffers and not do anything about it. After she became a mother she sees every child as her own. I’ve heard mothers said that before but I could sense how heart breaking it is for her to even talk about deprived children. I know adoption is common now but I come from a typical Chinese family where adoption is taboo and the only reason one would adopt is because they are unable to bear biological child. It’s heart-warming to see a couple with such openness and genuineness about adoption.

Another interesting conversation I had was with a couple who owns a sound studio I met through work. The husband had to concentrate on the actual work so I didn’t get to talk much with him but while waiting for him to complete the task, his convivial wife kept me fascinated with stories of what they do. I know zilch about audio and as I listened to the wife sharing the process of composing and orchestrating a song for advertisement, it’s like walking into a Narnia wardrobe. It’s my first time being exposed to the audio world, and I began to understand why there are so many audiophiles around. Also, I’ve never met anyone who loves watching movies as much as this lady-boss. Even I, a self-proclaimed film buff, will gladly pass my crown.

And last week, I was at the right place where I met someone senior who shared briefly about how he arrived at his current position, and the choices he made along the way. It makes me see under the layer of titles, people are quite the same. Yes, some people are pretty much born-leaders (I met them too) but even born-leaders went through a period a grilling and reshaping. I’m just very humbled to hear about their vulnerabilities.

There are more conversations I have been blessed to have, and the more I speak to people the more I realised the importance of a conversation. You gain knowledge, understanding and relationship at the cost of nothing (or the price of coffee). When I was in New Zealand, people – strangers just like to greet one another and talk. I was always very fascinated with that. It’s a shame we don’t have that culture here but no matter where we are I’m sure conversations can happen. When it does be sure to listen.

X,

Mel.

Leave a comment

Filed under Life Series

2017 New Year Resolution

In a true Popcornaday tradition (one that I invented just a sec ago as I’m typing), let me post my New Year Resolution for 2017 before the first month comes to an end!

1. Go on vacations and keep expenses within budget.
Kick the habit of treating foreign bills like monopoly money when on holiday.

2. Be healthy.
Limiting myself to eating 24x junk food/year, having tea without sugar, and aiming to walk 10,000 steps each day.

Strapped and ready to track

3. Learn a new skill.
Driving and/or cooking a proper dish.

4. Cross 1 thing off my bucket list.
I have 100 things to choose from. Anything from sky-diving to spotting a whale.screen-shot-2017-01-26-at-11-26-12-pm

5. Become a Morning Person.
Setting alarm clock at 7 a.m. daily. (With 15 minutes snooze allowance.)

6. Be involved in a community.
There are 2 communities in mind; Cell Group and Toastmaster Club.

7. Better financial planning.
At least 30% of my monthly earning shall go to savings.

8. Try out 24 new restaurants this year.
It’s a conservative number since I tried about 50 new restaurants last year. But because I’m resolved to have better financial planning, I should reduce my eating-out frequency too.

9. Set aside time for things that matters. 
Being intentional in meeting up with people I want to invest my time in. Prioritising Time Alone With God over my Netflix addiction. Setting aside 6 hours of sleep.

10. Volunteer.
I usually donate to a cause I believe in. This year I want to go beyond and put in physical effort to help others or cats.

12. Read 24 books.
Currently reading my 2nd book of the year. I have to finish it this week to meet the timeline.

14. Read the old testaments.
I’ve read the New Testaments last year. Now onward (or backward) to the heavy duty stuff.

15. Buy 1 thing that will make my life more efficient. 
A new laptop would be good.

16. Hold on to my personal mission for the year. 
Matthew 5: 14-16. Light of the World. City on the hill cannot be hidden.

I sense 2017 will be an awesome year, one of breakthroughs and expansion. January is ending and we have 11 months to go. Let’s make them count!

X,
Mel.

P.S: For this year’s resolution I actually refer to an article in a magazine I recently subscribed to. It’s the only magazine that I read cover to cover.

Leave a comment

Filed under Life Series, Spiritual Journey