Sunday, October 28, 2007

Lala Land

I am still in a state of living in Lala Land for the past week, working seems so surreal, working life for me seems to have a180-degree turn from the past too, may it continue to be so... but I cannot further elaborate.

I met a few very interesting people for the last few weeks and cause me thinking. The first was my hair stylist, he finally started out on his own with his wife in a neighbourhood salon. Small and not as posh as where he is working, but there is a sparkle in his eyes when he talks about it, when he is working in it, it is like a dream that he cherished for years has finally come to past, and his joy rubs off on me. I am really happy for him. Though he worked 7 days a week with no rest, yet he said he loves it and is going to at least gives his dream a try while he is still young, I admire his courage.

The next is a gardener I met when I went to site. He was alone watering the roof top garden when I went to take a look. And he told me before I came, he was alone with God, taking care of God's creation, I see a joy in his eyes, insignificant perhaps to many people of the task he is doing, yet he takes pride in it and is happy.

The third person I met a few days ago was an old university schoolmate, I visited his office, where he started out on his own, a one-man office, working 7 days a week, sleeping perhaps 5 hours a day. I asked him if he is tired and why work so hard? Yet, he displayed no tiredness or frustration, but the same sparkle in the eyes appears. He went on to show us his work, his handmade little models, his funny little stories with his clients, again his joy rubs off on me and I am really happy for him.
I saw on TV the making of Rainie's latest album a few days ago. I am not a fan of hers, but I can see the hard work, the long hours put in, but yet they enjoyed it tremendously and the pride they had working on it. I also have a friend who once told me she cannot imagine doing any other thing except what she is doing now and she is very thankful that she is able to do what she likes, despite of little sleep and even rushing over weekends.
So I pondered. Was it our attitude towards what we do that causes us to be joyful, I think I should be quite close to the answer. Perhaps this could be the answer to my frustration in the past, I might not have understood how to enjoy the moment in the past, my everyday endeavour then was always to finish my task, thinking then I would be happy once I finished it, postponing my joy to the future rather than enjoying the moment. I still cannot totally understand why there are people who can be so happy in what they are doing despite working so hard, with such long hours, but I am beginning to see a bit of light. My Shepherd works really long hours too, as He would retreat to the mountain late at night to pray after He sent His disciples and the people off. (Though I still do not like working long hours, haha.) Only my Shepherd can change my attitude towards life, to learn to enjoy the process, enjoy life, enjoy the tasks the Lord has given (with no long hours).
Hope you like the above illustration, this was inspired by the Taiwanese drama "Corner With Love", copied a little of it. Cheers, yes to another lazy week ahead!

Saturday, October 20, 2007


I was awakened by my alarm clock at 7am, and in that twilight zone between consciousness and unconsciousness, I thought it was weekday, time to awake to go to work, before it finally dawned on me it is a Saturday, after I tried recalling what was yesterday. I suddenly realised how ingrained my habit of not being mindful of time must have been as there was no more difference to me between weekdays and weekends for the past 6 months, except perhaps Sunday when I tried to wake up slightly earlier to get ready for Church. Amazing! I was still in unbelief this morning!

Thanks to all the friends and dear family that smsed me or left me emails and messages of encouragement, with prayers for my new day at work. One dear friend even took upon herself to be my alarm clock, sending me a morning call at 7am, thanks dear, so touched! Those are great reminders that I am deeply loved, not just by my Daddy God but family and friends, thanks to you all, you know who you are, and you all are expressions of my Shepherd's love for me. Cheers.

It is good to start work on a Thursday, because before I knew it, here comes Saturday, and I love weekends! It was quite a strange experience for the past 2 days, boss was not around, almost hardly anyone knew I was supposed to be back to work except my team mates (happy to be of low profile, yet a bit "sad" cos the equipments necessary for work was not even in place, but then it also means I don't need to really start working yet, haha, silent laughter). The funniest or almost deja vu thing is, I went back to the exact seat I was seated previously, I could hardly believe it myself till now, even though my boss did briefly mention that to me. It only registered in my mind the moment I sat down, and all those flashes of the past flooded me right before my eyes. (Somehow this blog today sounds very poetic.) Past projects that I left off undone slowly come back visibly before me... Selah... (This pause is extremely important, cos it means time to have a deep conversation with God... ) Fleeting thoughts of those "scary" last few months seemed to reenact right before me. Selah.

Just then, another dear boss whom I also worked with came and welcome me, it was a mixed feeling... on the one hand, I was quite touched, yet on the other, I was at a great dilemma, I was and am still hoping that I can make a clean break with some of those projects I used to do... Yet his kindness towards me may cause me to again of not knowing how to say no... Selah. I need God's wisdom and grace for this. Interestingly, my first 2 days at work seem quite a good start, I knocked off almost exactly on the dot, no need OT, but lots of reading to do... God is faithful.

Despite of it all, and all that I mentioned above, strange to say, I was and am so very at peace, even now as I write, this past 6-month of rest did have a great effect on me afterall. In the past, I might have been deeply troubled, or flared up silently within (oxy-moron scenario). Yet, strange to me now, I was pretty happy, joyful and still laughing at what was going on around me, still in a state of Lala Land. Selah. Thank You Daddy God, for somehow somewhat I knew He is still in control and things will turn around. I have learnt a little since, my provision does not come from the job I hold but from my Daddy God who loves me with an everlasting love, for I neither lack nor hunger for the past 6 months, moreover, I even went for holidays, did quite a bit of shopping (but at a more self-controlled manner), still have good meals, movies etc. Amazing.

As predicted, some still asked me why did I return? I thought perhaps I should settle this once and for all here, I return not because there are no new open doors, my Daddy God has never failed me, I was spoilt for choices. I return cos I just felt like returning in my heart, there is no reason other than that. I am not one who weighs pros and cons, I don't know how to make decision by pros and cons... I made decision in life with how I feel with my heart most of the time, and when moments friends see me indecisive, is because my heart is also unsure and no clear direction is visible, that is why. No reason, just follow my heart, and even if at the end of it all, I may have seemed to make a wrong move, I am still not afraid, He is always with me! Cheers.

Hope you like the above answer to last week illustration, the beloved lamb asleep in His presence, knowing all is well. I like the above illustration more than the one below.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The End Of My Long Vacation

Tomorrow marks the last day of my long vacation. (I have actually extended it for a few more days.) For the last few days, perhaps unconsciously, I was trying to squeeze in as many activities as I can, especially those that I wanted to do before I enter into a normal working life again, and trying to move towards a "nap-less" daily routine slowly. It is not easy though.

I had a few very relaxed days with a friend at a resort, to the extend of almost doing nothing. I had finally today fulfilled my promise to my nephew of a visit to the History Museum. (I am really tired, looking after 2 boys isn't that easy actually...) I am still reading those books I had bought recently, I doubt I can finish them all by tomorrow (a few of them are really good though, can't bear to finish them so fast). Still have a painting I wanted to paint but has yet started... Our Seven By Five website to update but yet to find time... Hoping to bring my mom for a holiday but yet able to get her to agree to go... Many dvds that I bought but yet to watch them... Still, it is time to work, for what I initially wanted to have was a 2-month break but now it has extended to a 6-month long break instead.

I can foresee that it is going to take me quite a while before I can get used to working again, after all, it has been 6 months since I last worked. Perhaps the most challenging part would be to wake up at 7am daily, to have dinner later in the night, to change my routine lunch porridge diet back to rice or noodle, to concentrate in doing one thing for a long period without any nap in between, etc. Next perhaps will be those "does not matter" people who will "bombard" me with endless questions of why I am returning to work, and what I have been doing for the past 6 months... Perhaps I should also come up with a perfect answer now to meet the demand... (just a joke, I pray this will not have to happen.) In fact, this was not in my consideration when I made my decision to return, yet now it has slowly come back to "haunt" me. Anyway, my Shepherd will answer them all. But still, dear friend (you know who you are), why do the firm you join need no OT? That is so unlike architectural firm! Come on, there must be something they are doing right, do let me know, I want to learn and implement... Miracles do happen and will also happen in my case. Selah.

Not sure what to write, cos having quite a mixed feeling now, wanted to rest more yet on the other hand, I do feel a little excited to start working again, and at a slower pace as agreed, praise the Lord!

Guess what the above silhouette is about? Will reveal the truth next week! My Daddy God is so good and my Shepherd, He never leaves me! Cheers!

Monday, October 08, 2007

My Loving Mom

The above illustration is the answer to last week's silhouette. I still prefer the effect of the silhouette, so calm and yet contrasting. I am dreaming of compiling this series of silhouettes and put them one page after another in a book, it sure will be fun... just a thought, just another dream for the future.

I am going for a short retreat with my friend this week, the above illustration has really come to pass, amazing... (Think it will happen, so long as I go and pay up tomorrow, everything will be confirmed...) This would be the first time I am going holiday with my long time friend... We are sure going to have a good time... talking... walking around... reading... fellowship... Praise the Lord! It is good to end this 6-month long break with a retreat... (perhaps 7-month long would be better?)

How strange I started off this week with "Monday Blues" despite of the fact that I have yet started work. My mind is again working extra hard... worrying... I am again procrastinating, perhaps I should rest and play for another 2 weeks? (Even to the extent of pushing it till next year...) I am just a step away from asking for permission to do that when I voiced my idea to my mom this morning, and for the first time, she actually said the longer I rest, the lazier I would become... Despite the fact that she is always very supportive of me... I guess she cannot stand it anymore, thinking that I have rested enough? Sigh... She is going to miss cooking and having lunch with me for sure... very soon...

For the last 6 months, I am really thankful to Daddy God that I have finally spent some quality time with my mom, we have breakfast, lunch and dinner almost everyday of my long vacation (actually about 75% of the time). I know her daily routine so well now. I know when she will be back from market, what time she will prepare lunch and dinner, what is her favourite afternoon TV programmes, what time she goes to church every Wednesday. I see her thriftiness on herself, but spoiling me with wonderful breakfast, delicious home cooked lunch, and prepared-with-love salad dinner. I see her always concerned about the wet clothes not able to dry if there is a weather change, what she has been reading in the bible recently, what she would use to carry the grocery from the supermarket, her red trolley... etc etc...

A Mother's love, is always amazing, and is expressed through the little actions and thoughts... always selfless, and all for the children... Our Daddy God's love's the same...actually much more!

Monday, October 01, 2007


I am ending my 6 months long vacation in 2 weeks’ time, how fast time flies! I can’t remember the last time I had such a long rest since I started going to school. I had not even dare to dream of taking a 3 months break before, not to mention half a year, and yet, unknowingly, I have done so, and enjoyed it greatly.

There were occasional fear, housing loan, bills, my love for shopping, etc that will crept in suddenly and caught me worrying in the past few months. Yet all this while, I lack nothing. Occasional voices of self-condemned will arise, asking myself what I am doing, drawing, resting, reading, holidaying, sleeping… every such activity in itself is without fault, but when one is not strong, one may fall into condemnation, seeing oneself as not being responsible, and short of an answer to give those who asked me what I am doing. Yet, thanks to Daddy God, this did not happen very often, for this much needed rest is so so GOOD! Even now I am already procrastinating on the date I set to start work!

I did things I did not have time in the past for and enjoyed myself so much, yet if one is to ask me what I have accomplished, I have nothing to boast, as I can’t really put a clear list up, though one thing I know, I finally saw my priority in life, it takes me so long to discover, and only discovered it recently, at the end of this long vacation… I thought I knew it along, but little did I know, I only know it in the head and not in my heart. I relished and cherished every waking moments these days, nothing matters more than the one thing, enjoy my Shepherd. I have 2 weeks left, and I have already laid out plans on how to use them… perhaps the BESTEST thing I ever did this 6 months, read, read, read! I had so much fun the last 2 weeks doing just that!

Today, I read a wonderful article by Yeomans, “He Giveth His beloved Sleep”. When I was working, I hardly find time to catch naps in the afternoon, not even during weekend, as I considered it very wasteful to be spent on such “inactivity” activity. There were also times I felt terrible about napping during a precious weekend, in short, I am a person who does not know how to rest. During these 6 months, I napped quite a bit in between activities, yet there are still occasional moments I felt bad for “wasting” time like this. However, one thing I know, I hardly have problem sleeping, except a few months back when I was worried about my work. Indeed, I am very blessed always with good sleep.

Why did I mention that article then? It cast a ray of light suddenly on me today, not that I never read and study this verse before “He giveth His beloved sleep”, just that I never saw it in this light before. His sleep is a gift to one who is His beloved, and the fact that one can sleep is a sign that that person is His beloved, the one whom He loved dearly. I just woke up from a quick nap after a morning of reading, and I continued with my reading with this beautiful chapter by Yeomans, and suddenly, I am caught by the fact that I must be so loved, cos I can sleep so easily and I had just received a gift of sleep a while ago… got my drift? (Of course, everything need a balance, I do not mean you sleep all day and do nothing, as Solomon said, a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands …so shall your poverty…)

Anyway, He giveth His beloved sleep! I pray that everyday as you awake from your sweet sleep in the morning, know that you have just received a gift from your Shepherd, and with this gift, He is telling you that you are His beloved, cheers!

(PS. I love the contrast in the silhouette, I love the beautiful sunset, I like this illustration, hope you too!)