Thursday, June 20, 2013

People to grow old with

The past weeks have been filled with visitors. People from home that have known me forever and whom I suspect will continue to stay in my life for a long time... Some pictures and  thoughts....

On a wonderful walk with my aunt around the city, one of the rare days where the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming...

Jiamin came to visit on her way back home!  she thought 1 week would be too long... but time flew by, with those 5am sleeping times and 9 in the morning classes. This photo was taken on a trip where I cajoled (more like coerced) her and the darling to a Jazz concert..I thought that it was fun to watch the buildings turn red! Jiamin thought that the band was ok, being spoilt by the wonderful band at her church... :)... I was happy to be out "so late"... 

Mari, who calls me her oldest friend... this sounds strange to me.. So I will call her my first(life long) friend :) (defined as first friend I met when I was 9 but still keep in contact with) We went roaming around Brussels, Holland shopping, getting lost/stuck in traffic, looking for cafes, checking out pretty old buildings...

I love how different we are. While starting at similar situations, we have turned out quite differently..  from the jobs we choose to the men we marry. I am amazed at how through it all, there is genuine love and concern between us.

My parents who visited for 2 days and left for the UK. This was a photo of them eating ice cream (shared via watsapp). I love that they look happy with their ice cream. I am happy that my parents have the opportunity to do stuff together at this stage of life. My mother has taught me to be proactive in going for what I want. I think she is before her time... and my dad, his sweet (sometimes blur) nature to be with the mother and care for her... Apparently, my mother thinks that they are good friends now so that's nice... 

Little mumu who is not here,but is in many of my iphone photos. He is growing very quickly.. and looking more like Sue Anne! :) I think that my love for technology has increased tremendously since being here. I love being able to connect to show love, pray for and think about and ask how they are at any time I want...

So many different thoughts, but I think the main one is... it takes work and effort to keep relationships...  we need to do life together, in flesh or virtually. I hope that all you special people know how much you mean to me (EVEN IF YOU ARE NOT FEATURED HERE!) ... that I hope that we will continue to love and be there for each other as life continues to unfolds...

A virtual Pass it On Card... :) I love you all very much.. and I know God has you all in his palm as well. With love and happy happy thoughts!

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Devotional from Rick Warren

“Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of — infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes.” (Ephesians 3:20 LB)
Faith is like a muscle: It can be strengthened. It can be weak or it can be strong, depending on how much you use it.
How does God build your faith? He uses a very predictable pattern. If you understand it, you can cooperate with him in developing greater faith. It’s like when the father, seeking help from Jesus for his son, said, “Have pity on us and help us, if you possibly can!” (Mark 9:22 TEV)
Jesus replied, “What do you mean, ‘If I can’? ... Anything is possible if a person believes” (Mark 9:23 NLT).
The first thing God does to build your faith is give you a dream. When God wants to work in your life, he always gives you a dream — about yourself, about what he wants you to do, about how he’s going to use your life to impact the world. 
There are many examples in the Bible of this:
  • God gave Noah the dream of building an ark.
  • God gave Abraham the dream of being the father of a great nation.
  • God gave Joseph the dream of being a leader that would save his people.
  • God gave Nehemiah the dream of building the wall around Jerusalem.
How do you know when a dream is from God or when it’s just something you’ve thought up yourself? The Bible tells us that God “by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of — infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes” (Ephesians 3:20 LB).
In other words, if a dream comes from God, it will be so big in your life that you can’t do it on your own. If you could do it on your own, you wouldn’t need faith. And if you don’t have faith, you’re not pleasing God, because the Bible says whatever is not of faith is sin (Romans 14:23).
God starts to build your faith by giving you a dream. He may be speaking to you now, but you just don’t recognize it for what it is. That dream you have, the idea or concept you’ve been thinking about doing that would be of real benefit to other people — where do you think that idea came from?
God will never tell you to do something that contradicts his truth. In other words, he won’t give you a dream of leaving your family and kids and moving to Hollywood to be a movie star. If you have that dream, then you can know it is not from God.
God starts with a dream as he works within your life to build faith.

Talk About It
  • What is it that you’ve been dreaming of doing?
  • If you believe this dream is from God, what should you do with it?

Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional © 2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.