Lovely 30…

7 Nov

Oh I never imagine being 30 can be so lovely! 🙂 🙂

My birthday celebrations ended this week and I’m proud to announce that I’m officially 30 years old!

When I was 20 yrs old, I used to wonder how would I be like when I hit 30?

I thought I would dread graduating from the 20s to the 30s…but when the day actually came, I only have one thought “God’s grace really increases by the year!”

Yes, my heart is full of thankfulness this birthday…

And the greatest birthday gift, is that God actually made me happy at 30 not ‘cos of any of the ‘typical’ blessings I thought a 30-yr old woman should have…

Haha..I’m not happily married with kids at age 30…

…and neither am I very successful or rich at age 30…

BUT I think I’m ‘aging’ gracefully…

with grace that came from a cheerful spirit that is constantly nourished and satisfied by the Lord…

…and that grace from within (spirit) brings about outward grace (physical, tangible blessings)…

As I recount my blessings, God has been so gracious:

1. This year I’m more evidently (truly) happy!

2. In the beginning of the year, Pastor gave me a whole list of prayer topics and God faithfully fulfills a number of them.

3. There’re a few unexpected surprises from God this year….haha…so 女人30还是有魅力的!

4. God has allowed me to reach a “stabilised” stage…where I’m relatively ‘peaceful’ and undisturbed by problems…it somewhat feels like “苦尽甘来”.

1. More evidently (truly) happy!

Hmm I’m NOT saying that I’d been ‘faking’ happiness in the past…of cos there’s abundant grace & love all these years, but somehow there is still some ‘naggy’ residual bondage that makes me “happy but not fully happy”…

So in the beginning of the year, I told my cell members that 2010 is a year that we have to tear down all the gates of the enemy (devil) and make the “Jericho walls” in our lives collapse <Joshua 6>…especially those strongholds/problems that have been bugging us for some time…

And I’m grateful that God answered that prayer for a number of my cell members and me too…I almost forgotten how I was still struggling in Mar 2010…and the year has not even ended, but God has taken away my long-time baggage…so my personal “Jericho wall” was torn down…How I know I’m truly happy? Cos I do not have any more grievance…and can agree truthfully that God has been giving me the best so far!

2. In the beginning of the year, I doubted whether the prayer topics Pastor gave me could be fulfilled, but I have the willing heart to pray at least…I was going through the prayer topics recently and was amazed that God faithfully fulfills:

(a) Individual

(i) Receive God’s customised blueprint for me…to think of some blessed woman in the Bible whom I admired and model after them (e.g. Beautiful Esther with the ‘死就死吧’ faith, or sorrowful Hannah who always ‘poured all her grievances to God’ till she received the ‘分别为圣’ spirit, or blessed Mary who chose to sit by the feet of Jesus to listen to Him speak rather than be distracted by the things of the world)

(ii) Put down all my typicality, just seek to be close to God & be satisfied by Him…absolutely do NOT compare with others and focus my perspective on the right things

(iii) Do not entertain accusations

(iv) Affirm that what God gives me is the best, I’d not received less and I’m not worse off than others

=> This prayer for ‘individual’ is progressively being answered from (i) to (iv)…

=> Pastor has rightly pointed out that this typicality is an enemy in me…my mindset tends to be rather ‘fixated’…I have a typical perception of what happiness should be (e.g. if everyone has, then I also want to have, etc), of what is good (e.g. good job, good man, good blessings, etc), and it is very hard for me to shift out of convention…but God is never typical! He works in ways we cannot imagine…

My problem (unhappiness and discontentment) starts whenever I’m typical again…seeking typical joys and blessings…And it doesn’t mean that turning to Christ will deprive me of typical blessings, but He will give me more than a typical life, typical family, typical career, typical friendships, typical success, typical health, etc…

=> And thus my blog is named “Grace (must) overwhelms typicality”, then I can break away from the little things that Satan always use to distract me from enjoying the fullness of Christ’s love & fulfill His purpose.

(b) Family – Do not stop praying for mum’s salvation and for opportunities to bless sisters..

=> I always think family members are the hardest to bless cos it’s awkward…Perhaps my mum’s ‘timetable’ is not up yet, but the ‘silly’ things she does (like praying increasingly to idols) sometimes do remind me to pray more for her…and God created especially more opportunities this year for me to talk more deeply with my sister through her relationship and work/studies issues…

(c) Work – Pray for at least one person’s spirit

=> While this is a standard prayer every year, doors are not always opened…just as it’s challenging to reach out to family members, it is the same for colleagues…This year, when I prayed about this, frankly I wasn’t expecting much…But God still works in His time..I did not actively seek out the 2 colleagues I brought to church this year…but when God provided the opportunities, I merely reacted according to the Spirit’s guidance…I think God is making me learn to break away from this timidity to share with non-believers who are close to me, like my family, colleagues and friends…

=> Work wise, this year, God also unexpectedly gave me new role, new growth and of cos manifold grace that comes along with it…

=> Oh, and of cos, this year, God also sent a brother to work together with me in same company…so wonderful! Hmm…I always thought it’s a pity that we can’t start a mini prayer group though we are in same company…but maybe before I leave the company, we can really start one, if John ends up in HQ together with me soon 🙂

(d) Ministry – Link up with brethren from other regions & start gospel blog

=> Blog was started & I actually do not find it a chore to maintain…in fact, whether or not it benefited others, it has certainly helped me structure some of my thoughts and count my blessings…I believe God will use it to bless others too…

=> During June church camp, was able to network with more bro/sis from Malaysia, China and USA…and continue to keep in touch with some of them…

=> I didn’t imagine I would have chance to go Beijing this year and link up with the local church there..

=> My ‘passion’ for world evangelism has always been rather low (oops..), but through these meet-ups, I think God’s starting to give me more ‘interest’ in this…

It’s amazing how prayers can bring wonders!

I never imagined any of the above could be possible before prayers…but indeed, if we truly believe, we pray and we will see!

Without real faith and prayers, we can forget about a miracle suddenly taking place in a vacuum!

Ok, while I give thanks that God made me come to a ‘stable’ stage, I also know that reaching a ‘stabilised’ stage also means a new chapter is beginning, with new ‘push’ of growth by God…

Some people asked me what’re my prayer topics or birthday wishes?

Well, some things have to be kept between me & God…

But broadly, these are some things I have to pray about:

1. Boldness to take on new challenges and plans set by God

Recently I’m thinking that there are 2 kinds of problems we can face…one kind is those that will bring about the empathy of others…u know, those real obvious problems, like some family, financial, relationship issues etc…but there’s another kind that is more ‘hidden’, not obvious ‘problems’…people will not only not empathise, but they may even ‘add onto the problem’ by their judgemental views…One e.g. could involve people’s expectations and whether one can live up to those standards…when we can’t meet, it takes courage to face people’s judgemental views and misunderstandings…and this is the kind of ‘problem’ that has to be carried ‘silently’, cos perhaps even the one who love you are the ones ‘causing the problem’ or they do not understand…

Pastor mentioned before that being a shepherd is sometimes the loneliest cos many a times, there are things that cannot be explained when the time is not right, there are secrets to be kept to protect the bro/sis involved, there are things to be pointed out no matter how unpleasant they sound to the listener, there are times when we need to appear ‘harsh’ in order to love, and of cos shepherds also make mistakes as we are also humans…but people usually expects more from a pastor and is less tolerant of his weaknesses…

Somehow, I think God is shifting me from the first kind of problems to the second kind…that’s why maybe outwardly, I do not appear to have any problem anymore…

Sometimes when I think of my current state and the desired state, the gaps and my weaknesses, it does make me abit scared to take on higher role from God…

Being born a woman, who tends to be more relational (we can get real upset if we find out that someone dislikes us), and more susceptible to ‘loneliness (especially in the spirit)’, I’m not sure how ready I am to carry that ‘silent’ problem… I mean, even if we really face serious problems, as long as there are people with us, support us, understand us, the problem will be bearable no matter what…but if there comes a point where no one understands and thus no support, no empathy, but lots of expectations and judgments instead, that kind of loneliness and burden will require strength and more prayers to bear…

Ok, my pessimism seems to be setting in again…haha maybe I need to realise the intensity of the challenge then I can see the need to pray more….Anyway, God has always surprised my fixated mind…thus far, things are never as bad as I imagined before prayers…so of cos I know if He wants me to go through something, He will provide the way too…In any case, at least I know besides God, I will still always have the support of Pastor and my ‘travelmates’….hmm, it’s easy to find many “friends” in life…but it is a miracle to find someone who can understand and connect with our spirits deeply…

Oh and I need to qualify…though by right pastors may feel loneliest, yet if that pastor often meets God in His spirit, the inner strength he receives will surpass what he can receive from man! If I really want to walk the path God wants me to take as a shepherd, then I cannot be afraid to receive hurts and misunderstandings…

2. Ability not to be distracted by typical things again…even when there’s no change in outward circumstances, have to train to live by faith, not by sight <2 Cor 5>…When we believe, then we will see…

3. Transitions at work – New boss, new teammates, new office dynamics…Though I tend to resist changes, I know the God who showered me with grace at work all these years will continue His faithfulness…

Well, so before I face the new challenges of the 30s, God has graciously given me a “graduation” tour (as I graduated from the 20s into the 30s)…heh I’d always thought I will reserve this romantic Europe trip for my future honeymoon…haha but who knows God is so kind…no “hubby” but I still get the “honeymoon”…I did not plan any holiday trip this year..but this one happened so suddenly and smoothly…the holiday invite, the matching schedule of me & friend, tour vacancy, good pricing, the leave approval, these were all settled in just 2 hours! Hmm, counting this trip, I have at least 30 days of celebration for my 30th birthday! 🙂


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8 Responses to “Lovely 30…”

  1. suyun2710 November 7, 2010 at 10:12 pm #

    It’s really great to see the things God has done in your life. Praise our Lord for your breakthroughs this year!

    Your post also sounds like you are wrapping up this year and ready to move on to 2011.

  2. huijun1910 November 7, 2010 at 11:11 pm #

    haha..our birthdays are already close to year end le ma…anyway, by the time I come bk from Europe is already nearing Dec too le..

    Recollecting the grace in advance so I wun be arrowed for year-end sharing…heh though I know this year-end wun be me too la…

    • suyun2710 November 7, 2010 at 11:19 pm #

      ya ya… got such thing one meh. how you know you won’t get arrowed?

      By the way, welcome back to blogging. Write more leh. Write on when you are back from your Europe trip!

      • huijun1910 November 7, 2010 at 11:35 pm #

        Ha I thot I already wrote “alot” cos pple are all saying my blog entries v long..heh so I write once a mth, u all pretend it’s 4 weekly entries ba..

        Ya by the time I blog abt Europe, shld be dec le..heh, n it’s likely to be a pic blog 🙂 hope I can hv meaningful blessed conversations with my non-C fren though..let’s keep each other in prayers..I will try to minus 7 hrs to rem wat u all r doing in spore 🙂

  3. Orange November 8, 2010 at 1:11 pm #

    Long overdue post! Thought u wanted a more creative title. Anyway, enjoy your ‘honeymoon’ and be sure to blog abt it.

  4. sophia November 8, 2010 at 3:57 pm #

    I’m so proud of you. I’ve always admired your life: not just because you’re wonderful, but because God does so many wonderful things TO you, and THROUGH you. Here’s to another year of all-flowing blessings, both in and out!

    Happy belated birthday! 😀

    • huijun1910 November 8, 2010 at 8:34 pm #

      Hey Sophia, was surprised u saw my blog entry so fast though I hadn’t been active for so long…tks for following the blog…

      the last i read ur blog, there’s just more & more yummy food & desserts…reading ur blog always makes me hungry even if it’s immediately after dinner!

      btw, i’m glad u manage to start the Bible study with mimi, whom u have been praying so long for 🙂

  5. overcomethecurse November 11, 2010 at 3:21 pm #

    Sis I love this post! Your post seem to bless not only yourself but others..reading it makes me feel more hopeful for the future..
    Have fun in Europe!

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