My Read of the Month:

Title: For One More Day
Author: Mitch Albom
Published: 2006
Genre: Fictional/inspirational
Ratings: 4.4 out of 5 stars

After reading Mitch’s two earlier best-selling books, The Five people you meet in Heaven and Tuesdays with Morrie, I decided to give this book a chance. And I was not left disappointed.

The story of this book started off very slowly with the introduction of its main character Chick Benetto and I nearly wanted to quit reading. But once the story got off, I could not put it down. I finished the book within a week.

The story mainly drives at loving and appreciating your loved ones while they are alive, and the setting was that of a divorced family (something that I could identify). The author managed to tell this story in such a poetic manner that tugged many of my heart strings and left me sobbing. Yes I cried.

A homage to all mothers, Mitch does an awesome job with this book. Do pick this up if you are in some nostalgic mood. And don’t say I didn’t warn you, please have some tissue while reading.

Who should read it: Anyone who loves a good sentimental story.

Looking Onwards, Moving Forward

The Message:

Then another said, “I’m ready to follow you, Master, but first excuse me while I get things straightened out at home.”

Jesus said, “No procrastination. No backward looks. You can’t put God’s kingdom off till tomorrow. Seize the day.”

New International Version:

Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say good-by to my family.”

Jesus replied, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”

Luke 9:61-62

Crossing the Line of Faith

Its been almost a month since my faith decision to transplant myself to another church.

The entire phase from the point of God’s revelation and to where He has led me now is almost unreal.

I would be lying if I said it was an easy process. In fact, it was one of the most difficult decision I had to face.

God matters to me

The opinion of others mattered a lot to me, but the will of God mattered too. God’s opinion had to count for more.

After six months, I finally yielded to Him and made the decision. God’s vision and call was just too loud to shut out or ignore.

At the Asia Conference, God provided more confirmations of that decision and provided glimpses of where His Church was heading.

Now I can only say that the road ahead looks promising and exciting in spite of the challenges that are tied to it.

You matter to me

Looking back, the process of making this decision was mostly a lonely and emotionally-bearing experience.  But I’m blessed that my experience was made more enduring with the love and understanding of some of the brothers and sisters who believed in me.

To those that I may have disappointed, please forgive me. I can only explain my decision with this underlining truth that each of us have our God-given race to run, and I’m obeying God in running mine.

The lessons learnt from this experience are ones that I will not forget. One day, I hope to pen down this experience in a book when this faith decision bears fruit.

Cos I believe that there will be many others who will go through a similar cross-road situation at one point or another, and I hope my personal experience will help them make a prayerful, calculated, balanced and biblical decision.

Impetus of the Contemporary Church Movement

During the Asia Conference, a well-known pastor called the leader of a local mega-church a driving force for the transition of the Asian Church from a traditional model to a contemporary one.

By Edmond Chan

When the pastor asked Pringle about how the Asian Church can transit from a traditional church to a contemporary one, the latter replied, “Two words: Kong Hee.”

Kong, who founded the mega-church 19 years ago, is known for his emphasis on fulfilling the Cultural Mandate – a movement by which the Church attempts to penetrate society and transform it.

The pastor, who leads his church with his personality and gift of preaching, believes that the key to church growth lies in the importance of the leadership of the pastor. A pastor, according to him, needs to be effective in communicating the vision of the church to its members, and in motivating members through his or her messages.

Evangelism is also high on the agenda of the 44-year old church leader, who believes in mobilising his masses to spread the Gospel where they are based in the workplace and even in closed groups normally inaccessible to ordinary people.

He adapted this concept of “3rd Space” from author Erwin McManus, which explains Christianity in terms of space and how we need to connect with people in their space and help them to experience God.

Read the full article here>>>

The New Era of His Church in Asia

Wow… I am still reeling with the Spirit’s fire from last week’s smashing Asia Conference.

It was an awesome privileged to be part of this historical 5-day event and to be imparted by some of the world’s servant leaders of God.

Their sessions (including the controversial Benny Hinn’s) really expanded my paradigm of God’s word and God at work. 

The rising of His Church

For certain, God is rising His Church to a whole new dimension of anointing that many of us have not seen  or experience before. The kind of anointing that we only read in the book of Acts and only heard about at the Azusa Street in the early 1900’s.

The era is coming where the Church will no longer be regarded as an out-of-touch or irrelevant religious white elephant that has been confined to the ‘back of the room’ of society for too long.  

The Church will come in such power in the coming times that our world will start to pay attention to what She will have to say pertaining to every matters in the arena of government, education, business, arts & entertainment and mass media. 

Getting ready for this rise

What our governments of Asia have failed to do, the Church will succeed; in uniting Asia as one. In time to come, Asia will be one people with one mandate. Through that mandate, economies and political borders will be flattened.

The question for many of us is to what part do we want to play in this? Or will we let this slip through our fingers and leave it for the next generation to take responsibility.

I for one aspire to do my part and fulfill my responsibilities of His mandate in my generation. I do not think there is always an opportunity where we can be part of something great which will leave a mark in the history of mankind for His glory.

Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.

Isiah 54:2

Brace yourselves and get ready to catch the next wave of the Holy Spirit’s wind.

My Doodling:

I’ll be taking a short break from here to focus on the ASIA CONFERENCE over these couple of days. Will be back next week with more to share. Btw, the first day of the conference has not been disappointing and certain to only get better! Catch the latest trailer here>>>

With Authority Comes Great Responsibility

We have heard the Great Commission from Matthew 28:18-20 being preached many times and often the final line, “Go and make disciples” is emphasized.

Without a doubt, that’s the mandate for Christians- to extend the frontiers of the kingdom through discipleship!

However, the problem of giving this charge is that we often overlook the process of getting there. And this process denotes that we need to be a true disciples ourselves first before becoming a disciple-maker.

Creating more value in discipleship

Discipleship is a process of reproducing more disciples. In doing so, we are reproducing more of ourselves and it is safe to say that a disciple can only get as strong as his mentor.

No offence to anyone but can a person with a highest education of PSLE be an educator for a university? Or can a person who doesn’t know how to swim coach others in swimming? Imagine the consequences.

High likely, the university students would not be adequately equipped and enter the workforce poorly informed and unable to perform to the market’s demands. In the case of swimming, chances are that those students would not be top swimmers or worse, some might even drown.

Similarly, if we truly want to participant in the Great Commission and make true disciples, then we should first resolute to be a credible disciple of Jesus as we embark on being a disciple-maker; one that walks the talk in obeying all of God’s commands in our lives before teaching others to do so.

Qualities for value-add

Albeit discipleship is a tall order,  we need not be perfect before we can start discipling others. Cos we can never be fully perfect, but we can work towards perfection in our obedience and faith in God.

In working towards being a disciple-maker for Christ,  we should exhibit some minimal qualities as a disciple below:

  • A unwavering passion for God, His Church and the lost
  • Good knowledge and understanding of His word
  • A healthy self-esteem in God to lead and serve
  • Having some basic counselling skills
  • A sound and balanced worldview 
  • Ever-learning and desiring to grow
  • Good basic inter-personal skills

Responsible discipleship

Discipleship is God’s business and is a serious business cos it concerns lives of people that God had redeemed. Their destiny and future are many of times shaped by what we teach (or don’t teach) on important areas such as marriage life or BGR matters, our careers, finances, ministry etc…

For that reason, I believe the responsibility rests on our shoulders as a disciple of Jesus to develop and train ourselves fully towards being a relevant and value-added disciple-maker in our lifetime.

Let’s aim to be a ‘springboard’ and a platform high enough for others to take their growth to the next level. If not, we will become a ‘stumbling block’ or a ‘glass ceiling’ in stunning their potential and growth.

My Doodling:

If you have not heard about it, there will be a huge event happening next week from 19-23 November 2008. The ASIA CONFERENCE, the first-ever of its kind will be held in Singapore to touch Asia to transform the world and it is incredibly FOC for all.

A Reputation that Matters

“Guilt is banished through love and truth;
   Fear-of-God deflects evil. 

When God approves of your life,
   even your enemies will end up shaking your hand.

Far better to be right and poor
   than to be wrong and rich.

Proverbs 16:6-8 (The Message)