BLC's Community Blog - the Gatherings, Life Groups, discipleship, social issues, prayers, worship experiences, insights into the Scripture... no random statements of who we had lunch with and what our dogs ate for breakfast. The place where strangers get to know us as a community, who we are, what we're like, how we function, and to experience what it'll be like to be a part of us.

Monday, February 28, 2005

In and out and in..

blccny

See lah...all this overdue blogging.. Just a few weeks ago, we ushered in a brand new Chinese New Year, and a week ago, we ushered it out. Most of us at BLC are Chinese, and the thing with us Chinese Christians, sometimes we struggle with whether to be Chinese first or Christians first =)

Well, it's not wrong to celebrate anyway, it's our culture anyway. This new year has also seen BLC spawn new friends, new babies (on the way still actually!), new start to our children's ministry and even new bloggers =) Let's just keep praying that God has more exciting stuff in store for us!

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Lifegroup ponderings: The Apostles' Creed 2nd Article

We had a good time yesterday discussing what The Apostles' Creed means, and what it stands for. (This is new to me since I've no idea what it is!) Sivin then led us to a discussion on what Jesus is like and the concept of Trinity, which we find quite challenging.

Here are the notes collected from our ponderings:

What comes to your mind when you hear about Jesus Christ?


Grace: He came to save us; healer, suffers, light, mercy, misunderstood, a curse word for some.

Me: Revolutionary; communist; prince of peace; prophet, miracle worker, lamb, lion, not popular, judge and liberated women.

Rachel : Son of God; our friend; someone who died on the cross, boring to some

Sivin: Rabbi; teacher; son of man; exorcist, king, hope, highly respected, children like him and liberated children.

Chin Hor: lord and savior

Carmen: a leader, risen from the dead

What are the questions do you have when you think of Jesus Christ?

How does He look like?
  • Like a Jew
  • Like Woody Allen
  • Tough and rugged
  • Doubt He looks like Jim Caviezel in the movie Passion of The Christ.
  • Like an Arabian man
  • Hairy, curly hair
Is he really God?
  • Yes because it is prophesized in the Old Testament
  • Yes because He performed miracles.
  • Yes because He was risen from the dead.
Why should we worship Him?
  • He is God so we worship Him.
  • We are grateful for Him saving us even though we are sinful, the concept of grace.
Why are there ‘3 elements’ in the Holy Trinity?
  • Why are there 3 and not 1?
  • 3 distinct personalities of God.
Did He actually think of me when He was crucified on the cross?
  • Yes, God knows all.
Other questions:

  • Could Jesus really see the future? - me: I think so! :)
  • What is His message?
  • If Jesus is God, when He was tortured, did He feel what us as humans feel if we were to be tortured? - He's fully man, so yes, he did feel it.
  • What is Jesus doing now?
  • Did Jesus appear in the past through Old Testament figures?
Why didn’t the old Gospel writers describe Jesus’ features?
It is not important. Satan can disguise himself as Jesus if a description is given. It is more important to write about who He is rather than what He looks like. They don’t encourage idol worship.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Fresh, Focus, Family, Faithful, Full

Here's a quick sweep of one of the LiFE Group meetings last Saturday after the Chinese New year break.


Eric_amy_noah
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.

It's always great to have new people bring freshness to LiFE Groups. Welcome!

the_lees
How does one help everyone in the group focus during our meetings? That's always a challenge. For me, I keep a soft connection with the kid and yet give full attention to what's happening in the group. And indirectly. it helps our young ones learn "focus" too.

theGans
Our desire is to grow as individuals, nuclear families and extended families. This doesn't exclude the singles (just because one is not married it does not mean one is not included), singles are part of the extended family too.

kids_mom2 Faithfulness is key to any long term relationship... and it's always a great feeling when we have full attendance and full participation.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Children are the church of today too!

The about 45minutes spent today with the 8 children (and parents and helpers) was a rewarding one. I was especially touched when during our mini-feast time, when I asked who would like to share biscuit with me (after I had given away all of mine), one of the children immediately offered one for me. Then, there were many little suprises in their response to my "modeling" whether it's walking slowly, talking softly and the use of the "special space" rug that really touched me. I'm not children worker veteran (in fact I never saw myself in that category) but today's "less than perfect and even "fumbling" first "orientation" session was a small and significant win I'd liek tocelebrate and be thankful. All of us wanted to see this work and even with some glitches here and there, overall I came home today feeling wonderful. Because, I sense God's approval and affirmation on what we are trying to do here. And now it's to stick on the track ... there's still so much more to learn and thank God ... there are people cheering us on. At least that's how I felt after having dinner with a veteran children's ministy worker and a intergenerational worship, Christian education and church guru (Many thanks to the host who provided dinner and a listening ear). All in all it's been a pretty good Sunday.
~ for more on the values that motivates me in regards children's (family & intergenerational) ministry read here

He spoke on the subject of Knowing God, with special emphasis on the very Trinity itself.

As usual, the most engaging discussions happened after the 'official' event. Some would stay back and ask questions, those who are called 'mavens' (I forgot where Sivin got the name), and my, were they tough questions!

Sometimes, as Sivin said, the only thing we can do is be silent in the presence of greatness. God's majesty.

Man can only explain away so much without trying to throw God into a box. What is a Creator whom the creation can fully understand?
~ Thanks to Ben Ong for capturing this moment last Friday, more insights from him and a picture here

Both events had quite a number of "delightful" surprises ... this reminds me that "God indeed is a God of surprises!" I've heard of the phrase Children or youth are the church of tomorrow (in some sense there's some truth in that) but I was encouraged by Dr. Allan Harkness (intergenerational Christian education guru) that we need to see them as the church of today. Then we won't miss God is doing NOW! and we would also be more sentitive in facilitating an enviroment where we could all flow into what God is doing NOW! It's not over yet, it's a mere beginning ...

Monday, February 14, 2005

It's Contagious



Have enjoyed seeing Chin Hor post lots of pics here and on his own blog, and one of the themes he got going on was the sky. Funnily I have been looking at it more since then and whipping out the nikon and pointing it up to take a Gump shot. ( you never know what youre gonna get). I liked this one taken as we walked through the botanical gardens in Penang. These places really remind us of God's presence and the power of his creation. The effect here reminded me of some recent text we have had where God spoke from above.......

Welcome!

Overdue blogging, I can't stand it, can you? Unfortunately, I've fallen victim to this disease for the past couple of months - lots of things I want to blog about, photos to share but no time to get it done! *haha* So here's a disclaimer:

*this blog entry was intended for Sunday, 7 February 2005. The reason why I haven't just simply changed the time and date to the actual date above is because people might miss the entry. Lately, it's been a pleasant surprise to see many new entries! Happy to see DB blog more since he's joined the BLC council ;) Happy to see Messy Christian give her usual dose of shout outs too and we can't leave our Rev. Sivin Kit out can we? Lots of entries mean no room for getting away with overdue blogging!*

Welcome! Welcome Takeshi, our new resident Japanese at BLC. He's been with us for a month now I think, and he's actually doing his Bachelor in Divinity at STM, Seremban. It's part of his training to be with a church and to be guided by a Pastor. Enter - BLC =) We are after all known to not slave-drive our members and are known to be quite foreigner-friendly *haha* He's a really nice guy, arguably the most polite person in BLC! You know how the Japanese customs are ;)Needless to say, he's been pretty much integrated into our BLC customs, style and lifestyle! =)

takeshicross     takeshi

And...Welcome back to BLC Mr. Tan Soo Inn! One of Rev. Sivin's mentors and friends returned to BLC as our guest speaker and preached a fine sermon. Looking forward to listening to him again and am sure those who bought his book are enjoying it now!

sooinn

Welcome to the new 2005 council of BLC! Led by Rev. Sivin Kit, looking majestic in this photograph! Good to see the new council get off to a great start at the AGM, shared with the outgoing members of the previous council.

sivincross     councilpray

newcouncil

davidcommunion

David Berry, one of 4 new council members (James, Hoong Guit, John Cheah are the others), put to 'service' during Holy Communion immediately! ;)

Lastly, we've been having more babies and kids in BLC, and there are just way too many photographs of them from the past 2 years till now to dig up and blog about but I just couldn't resist posting pictures of the little Berrys.

lildeclan

lilberrys

These were recent so it's fresh in my mind - baby Declan is getting cuter and cuter each day and you gotta love the photo of Declan with his big sister Kirsten Berry.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Entering the LENT Season


wilderness
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
Here's a good introduction on what "Lent" is all about from BBC Religion & Ethics - Lent

Lent
Lent is the period of forty days which comes before Easter in the Christian calendar. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday.

For many Christians, Lent is traditionally a period of fasting and repentance in preparation for Easter. However, some churches do not observe Lent significantly.

A time of prayer and penance
The Christian churches that observe Lent today use it as a time for prayer and penance.

Few people nowadays fast for the whole of Lent, although some do still fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and many believers give up certain foods or alcohol as a form of self-discipline.

Many Christians use the time for religious reflection and contemplation.

Why 40 Days?
40 is a significant number in Jewish-Christian scripture:

In Genesis, the flood which destroyed the earth was brought about by 40 days and nights of rain.

The Hebrews spent 40 years in the wilderness before reaching the land promised to them by God.

Moses fasted for 40 days before receiving the ten commandments on Mount Sinai.

Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the wilderness in preparation for his ministry.

Most Christians regard Jesus' time in the wilderness as the key event for the duration of Lent.

Why is it called Lent?
Lent is an old English word meaning to lengthen. Lent is observed in spring, when the days begin to get longer.

The colour purple
Purple is the symbolic colour used in some churches throughout Lent, for drapes and altar frontals.

Purple is used for two reasons: firstly because it is associated with mourning and so anticipates the pain and suffering of the crucifixion, and secondly because purple is the colour associated with royalty, and celebrates Christ’s resurrection and sovereignty.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Open the Eyes of My Heart


sunburst_cross
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
Moh Foong shared on a special moment about God's Shining Presence during last Sunday's Worship Gathering. A comment remarked, "You noticed the light because you have open eyes and an open heart..." May this be our prayer and posture every Sunday, every day, every moment. :-)

*this photo was taken around 5pm at the Father's House one of the week days in 2004*

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Looking back


Looking back
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
Time really flies ... all the people in this picture represents the 5 "batches" of people that has come to become part of the BLC family since the year 2000. It's so "rewarding" to see them grow, participate and serve in the life of BLC. I enjoyed the giggles when they were comparing how some of us have "changed" in terms of hair style, body size, and various outward observations. In a world that has little historical consciousness, to pause and "look back" with gratitude and thankfulness (plus fun!) is a needed practice. We also stop to see how our story has progressed so far.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Shrove Tuesday

The period of Lent starts right on the Eve of Chinese New Year...
Tomorrow is Shrove Tuesday: "Shrove Tuesday is the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent. It's a day of penitence, to clean the soul, and a day of celebration as the last chance to feast before Lent begins."
Refer to http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/holydays/shrovetuesday.shtml

I know the day traditionally by the pancake feast!

I am trying to get my head around to celebrating CNY whilst still feeling called to fast this Lenten period. Can I celebrate CNY and then forego the break of fasts on Sundays to still make up for the 40-day period? What are your thoughts...

Sigrun

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Eating out at Bangsar Village



Sivin clicks away with his camera while Takeshi gets ready to enjoy his food. John (the hands) gets ready too!

Some of us - The Berrys, Su-Shen, John, Calvin (I hope I didn't get his name wrong!), our Japanese friend Takeshi, Chin Hor, Sivin and me went out for lunch at Bangsar Village. Created a very small photo album for that, so do have a look.

Had a great time! Can't believe that by the time I left the place it was nearly 4pm. :) Satisfied my curiosity about Macs by visiting the Apple Centre there and fell in love with pristine iBook. Now, if only I could afford it now ... oh, and I posted about the day here. :)

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Treasure Hunt


sharing_scripture
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.


Looking for Gold
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
I enjoyed watching people get "into" the Scriptures with questions and all. Because that's how one begins the adventure of finding the treasures there. Like all adventures, having a team makes a load of difference. Everyone plays their part. Some initiate to get things going, others might slow the team down for more thought, every one actively contributes. Bible open ... someone taking notes ... laughter ... some silence .. conversation .. . and the Spirit is working in the midst of all this. That's what I believe. God wants us to find the treasures of truths most surely, it's applies to us and cause us to act (of course), and most of all we're drawn to the TRUTH - himself.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Side Affects of a LiFE Group Meeting


Post LG Effects
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
It's good to have both "old" & "new" people in a LiFe Group. There are new dynamics and interesting chemistry that happens. This photo tries to capture the post LiFE Group meeting affects after some fried mee, a good dose of interacting with the Scriptures, conversing with humans and sincere prayer support.

More pictures on the way.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Malaysian Manna


Malaysian Manna
Originally uploaded by sivinkit.
When all else fails then the Wednesday James LiFE Group resorts to the bare necessities .. which is good enough for fellowship.

LiFE Group Happenings .. A good start!

"I believed that everyone in the LG should be a participator in some way and serving in the group in small ways is a good start. It’ll help us not to be too comfortable or to have a consumer mindset when coming to LG or church."
- For more go to Our LG and 1st LiFE Group Meeting

"Last night, the passage of Joshua 22 caught our attention during our LG. Temper, anger and tension flared when the 9 ½ tribes of Israel heard that the 2 ½ tribes had built an altar, assuming it to be for idol worship"
~ for more go to Misunderstanding
"the 10 commandments actually has 2 parts, the first 3 commandments is about God and the rest are about people. I remember someone asking why is there only 3 commandments about God and so many about us......and I think Joey is the one who came up with the answer, 1 GOD and 6 billion people, that's why! ! hehe"

~ for more go to 10 Commandments

A Good LG Experience!!

Yesterday night, Giving Tree had, to me, another great LIFE Group experience..... we had full attendance again, yay!

Everything was so exciting.... dinner, prayer, worship singing, reading & discussion of the Word, the fellowship throughout.....

We covered the second half of the Book of Joshua and we learnt the following:

1. Unity among family is important to maintain;
2. Giving people the benefit of a doubt, especially our Christian family....
3. We need to examine ourselves always to ensure that our motives are always in line with that of our Lord......

That's all for now...