BLOGGER



Youngest kid of six with an inferiority and black sheep complex, but determined that God saves not just his soul to heaven but the remainder of his manic-depressive life, so others won't say he became a Christian and remained a jerk.


MAIN THEMES

On identity
i won't be transparent before i'm opaque. and you'll get to know me starting from the small things: who my favourite bands are. what kind of movies i like. who are my heroes.

On Christianity
I’m convinced that when confronted with sincere, real love, the Jesus factor will become obvious. But let’s not plant the cross before we carry it. I’m not trying to con you.

On dreams
Some dreams are meant to be achieved. I know that. But maybe other dreams are meant to drive us, privately. Never known to anyone but ourselves.


OTHER THEMES

On melancholy
It is a sadness that, when choosing between crying and sighing, will choose sighing. I'd almost say that melancholy is being sad about sadness itself.

On memory and nostalgia
It saddens me when life moves forward and people decide that certain things are worth forgetting.

On language
I've learnt that the word irregardless is filed as a non-standard word in the English language. That's a lexicographer's way of saying it's not a real word.

On politics
Crowds are fickle things. So when we stand in the thousands and cry against the present government, do we know who we're actually crying for?

On society
People always want the best for themselves. But I want to sometimes take second or third or fourth best, just so that the loser down the road doesn't always have to come in last. It must feel like shit to always come in last.

On growing old
Leasehold property make me feel sad. It doesn't matter how old the family photos are that you put on your wall. It's your family but it's not really your wall.

On philosophy
I ask you, if God loves everyone, and if God is also incapable of loving evil, how can there be such a thing as an evil man?

On a daily basis
One line quips, like this.


CHAT





Tuesday, May 30, 2006

I've never dared to sing those worship songs with lyrics like "I will go to the ends of the earth for You". I just never had the guts to sing them.

*

It's black as the blackest night is black. We're in a jungle, hiking downhill. The ground is muddy and rocky and covered with plants. There's lalang all around us, up to our necks. The only guide we have is a footpath wide enough for one and the faint torch lights of the person in front. It is hailing rain like nothing before. I had lost confidence in my shoes to grip the earth so i'd done away with them. There in the thick of night in a Malaysian bushland, hiking downhill in the rain barefoot, was my moment of moments.

This is between kampung Regang and kampung Jangkap. I spent this past weekend on a mission training trip in Raub - what the maps tell you is that Raub is a quiet town along the main road. The trip actually takes place along these hostile terrains, in villages so small they're about a hundred strong in all. Three days before our trip, we were asked what we expected of it. thinking that the excursion into the mountainside was going to offer solitude and silence, i said i expected to quieten my spirit. how wrong it had turned out to be.

Between four hours of truck ride going through massive holes on an already cracking terrain, four hours of hiking up a sloshy mountain, literally ploughing through lalang and mud for over an hour back and forth from the two kampungs above, attending a blitz of three services in 16 hours plus sleep, and tending to the prayer needs of the orang asli in bahasa melayu, there was definitely no room for my urbacentric mind to "quieten my spirit".

I've always wanted to pack in the whole city life and go live in the country. i get so tired of the jams and the buildings and how ugly the city looks sometimes. i just want to leave it all behind and live in a farm somewhere in the middle of nowhere.

Having spent one weekend - just one - in what can only be accurately called the Malaysian wilderness, i am absolutely floored and humbled. i know now that the country and life there desereves a lot more respect than what i sometimes give it. cos when you're there, everything is absolutely real. the kind of food you're limited to eat for days and days on end is real. the limited toilet facilities is real. the sheer volume of mosquitoes and the impracticability of safeguarding against them all is absolutely real. the sun and the certainty of sunburn is absolutely real. the muddy terrain is absolutely real. sometimes, you can be cognisant about these things, and still make callous comments about wanting to leave the city life, because it hasn't become real to you yet.

Now, i won't say that this trip has weakened my desire to pack in the city life - nor has it strengthened it. it's just made me realise that the whole idea of living in the country deserves more respect than just saying it. the next time i mouth-off about how much i hate the city, i really have a flesh and bones alternative in my book of experiences to go by, and i know now that it cannot be taken lightly. it is a thoroughly, skin bitingly real experience that must be encountered first-hand before you can either appreciate it's difficulty, or even fully understand what it means to be involved in missions - in any way - even in finances.

Yes, i'm convinced now. i'm convinced that even people who want to contribute to missions from the comforts of the city - nothing wrong with that - should go through a short trip like this, because there is nothing like knowing where your contribution is going, to whom, to meet what needs, under what conditions, because you have a slice of idea what it was like for you across two days, as it is for these missionaries across many months, if not years.

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Genusfrog [ 8:52 am ]

2 Comments:

  • heyz.. first experience at raub eh.. we (1-800united) went there a few week before you and yea.. an experience for alot of us.. ;o)

    oh.. many of us are still itching from the bug bites and skin peeling.. sudah 1 month, man! haha

    By Anonymous eshnah, at 10:19 am  

  • ya man. those bugs are damn vicious! i dunno what kind of super-tahan lasak mosquitoes they have there, the marks and itch last for weeks!

    By Anonymous Fergs, at 2:44 pm  

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