Monday, April 17, 2006

Lessons From the Dessert

I spent the holy week alone.

At first I was consumed with loneliness and grief that I hated myself and regretted my decision of not going home. I realized how badly I wanted to spend my time with my family. But after much thought, I realized my original intention of not going home. I wanted to spend that time for some serious solitary reflection. And in the end, I proved to myself that I made a right decision after all. The holy week had opened me to some realizations, that has enabled me now to appreciate the journey of life even more.

Allow me to indulge myself in sharing you one of my favorite reflections:

“The Lord Your God will lead you, and He will fight for you, just as you saw Him do in Egypt, and in the dessert…He went in front of them in a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day.” (Deuteronomy 1:30-31; 33b)

I like this verse very much. It talks about God’s guidance, protection, power and provision. Right from the beginning the Lord has never left the Israelites. In fact He was the One who led them along the journey. God designed everything from their exit to Egypt up to their final destination. Everything was perfect in accordance to His will. Everything – including the Israelite’s hardships under pharaoh. In fact, God Himself hardened the pharaoh’s heart - so that God would be able to make His power and glory known to all men. Nevertheless, God provided a way out for them.

Along their journey, God was with them. He led, fed and protected them. Despite their nomadic lifestyle, God made their living conditions comfortable. The pillar of light provided the people with adequate warmth and light. While the pillar of cloud protected them from the heat and other harsh elements. Not to mention of course the manna and sparrows which literally came from heaven.

Yet despite all these blessings the Israelites still remain ungrateful, always complaining, doubtful, and to some extent hard headed. As I read along, I always ask in unbelief … Why? … How come? … How could they?

As I sought for answers, I realized that I am no different from these Israelites. Looking at my life – I can see how God has blessed me. How those abounding goodness could not be possible without God. Truly, my past is a life worth living again. (That at times, I find myself wishing to go back to that life)

But like the Israelites, I must move on or else I would not reach the place where God destined me to be. Which I know is far better than my past.

And like the Israelites, I have become ungrateful, always complaining, doubtful and hard headed. In the corner of my room, in the stillness of the night, I secretly slip into a world of melancholy, loneliness, and hopelessness. I have failed to remember how God has blessed me before and how He can still bless me now and forever.

This realization made me see God’s light upon my present bleak feeling. The road to the Promised Land was never a paradise. But God made a way. He did not make a miraculous exhibition by turning the dessert into a garden. But in His own loving supervision He still provided something sufficient, but wonderful as well. Moreover, the pharaoh’s hardened heart was also an instrument in revealing God’s presence. There is such a thing as blessing in disguise. Indeed, all things work for good to those who love God. No matter how bad a situation may feel, beyond it lies God’s will who intended things to be that way for His greater glory.

This brings me to entrusting the Lord with my life. That no matter how things will be, I will remain in faith. Believing that He will be my Protector, Defender, Healer, Provider and Savior. His grace is sufficient for me.

May God always bless me and protect me from any harm. May I enter the promised land victorious.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Fresh Hot Summer Kiss

As I entered the parking lot, I have noticed how few the cars were. Entering the lobby, the office felt so gloomy. Silence greeted me as I went out from the elevator. As I sat on my desk, little by little, I felt the room temperature going down.

Most of my officemates are on vacation. With few people around, I literally feel so cold. It feels like a slow Monday morning for me. My lazy bones seem to dominate majority of my body. I feel so envious of those who are on their advance holidays right now. As my mind drifted outside the cold office building and into the hot summer sun, I felt guilty, as if I committed adultery, to my company for not exerting the effort I should be giving right now with my work.

Perhaps the silence and coolness of the room froze those hardworking cells in my body. Plus the idea of a fast approaching holiday prompted these wandering imaginations to activate and soar far from where I am sitting right now.

With eyes wide open, I stared pass through the office walls. I see a cool pool of blue-colored water. The expanse so wide, it has an infinite stretch, until the water meets the sky - forming a beautiful horizon. A calm peaceful view. I dream of the Mediterranean Sea. As I look up the fluffy Cumulus clouds forming like white cotton candies amidst the cool blue background, I smell serenity.

Before my thoughts could go any farther, and before I can even guess the shapes of the clouds, my phone rang. A business contact is coming over to meet with me. I looked at my watch. I must prepare for our meeting.

There goes my two-minute vacation - a vacation that took me to the silence of my mind; to the soul of my heart; and to the serenity of my spirit.

Now, I am back to work. Energized this time around. Ready to face the challenges for the day, with the glow of summer already in my heart!

Friday, April 07, 2006

WOOOF!!!

Ok here's my first taste of an on-line self quiz ... I do not know how this works yet. With fingers...err paws crossed, I wish this be posted successfully:

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Rhyanne, you're a Cocker Spaniel!

No bones about it, you're a perky, loving Cocker Spaniel. (Think Lady from Lady Tramp.) Playful and energetic, you're a real people person — er, dog. People can't help but fall hook, line, and sinker for your friendly, well-rounded personality and natural charm. It's a subtle thing, though — being outgoing and flirtatious, not showy, is the name of your game. Friends, co-workers, and potential dates can't help liking you. How could they not? Your winning-yet-humble ways make you popular, admired, and a joy to be around.


Take this test at Tickle

You're a Cocker Spaniel!

What Breed of Dog Are You?
Brought to you by Tickle

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Of Vegetable Salad and Mystery


With my “carrot” out of sight, out of touch, my friend kid me by telling me that there will be some other guys out there. He may not be in the form of a carrot, but probably a cabbage, or a string bean, or a celery and so forth… Hahaha! She never fails to make me smile with her astute comments.

Seriously, she may have a point. Indeed, there are lots of guys out there. And if I really am desperate for a boyfriend, well I can easily get myself one right now. There are cabbages, string beans, celeries, and all other kinds. Choices are so plenty that I can feast on a vegetable salad anytime I want to… But it’s my choice not to.

In as much as I do not want to get hurt, I also do not want to toy on someone else’s feelings. Neither would I settle for anyone – just for the sake of having one. Must I engage in some emotional connection, it should be with someone I am truly, deeply in to – and vice versa. Someone I respect, someone I care for, someone I love, and someone who feels the same for me.

I do not believe in flings. Anything less than a mad passionate love is a waste of time. I choose to reserve my emotions, my heart, my soul for the real thing - for that special someone – whoever, wherever he may be. They say love moves in mysterious ways. I do believe it’s true because up until now, my man is still a mystery!