Unfamiliar

New Lifegroup, new challenge, new season. Got to learn to love a whole new bunch of people. Yeah, what a venture to settle in a totally unfamiliar ground when I had the choice to go anywhere.

*deep breath* Hope this goes well.

This bunch though, seems to love hanging out for extended period. I’m at this point in life where I’m selfishly guarding my time and personal space like never before – not kidding. Guess this is where love has to come in, where I have to learn to give, even at the expense of my comfort.

I honestly don’t know what I can offer, because I’m already feeling rather drained and emptied and anything can just break (that kinda stuff) at this point. But. Shall see.

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Unfamiliar

Community Crisis

Either I’m still very tired, or something has changed on the inside. Attended a wedding in the morning and I realised that I’m no longer excited to meet people from church even after not seeing them for a long time.

This observation, unfortunately, doesn’t apply to people in general. I like my colleagues, and I looked forward to seeing them after not being back in office for two weeks. I came back from that same “trip” realising I didn’t miss seeing anyone from church.

Community has got to be one of the tougher trials on earth. I’ve seen so many, including my mom, walking out of church because of the community. Is there anyone, who has walked out of church because of the community and came back later, whom I can hear from? I would love to hear how you got past it, really.

“If you love me, feed my sheep.”
“Whoever loves God must also love his brother.”
I know.

Community Crisis

Reminder of God’s Faithfulness

For the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling rather left alone, somewhat forgotten. Kept asking God, where are You.

But today, I set aside my lunch and dinner time to meet with two ladies. One from work, and one from church. With Pris at lunch, we took time to get to know each other as fellow Christians and prayed for the organisation together. With Yvonne at dinner, we shared about where we are with God, in particular how it has been trying to keep our faith as working adults.

For one, I appreciate the vulnerability in the time of sharing. Such an exchange is very much needed. I feel like I’m running so low on quality time like that, so much so that I have been feeling a lack of support in my spiritual walk.

In my conversation with Yvonne in particular, I shared about how God has been hearing my prayers since I started work here. From praying for Christian support, praying against divisional changes, to praying about my work relationship with my superior, God has been answering my prayers. It was then that I said, “I realise God has actually been quite present in my work place.” To which Yvonne affirmed and reminded me that it is often such times when we look back on what God has done that we realise that God has been here with us.

Struggling with community, but this is also a good reminder of the importance of community in spurring each other on. Today’s a good day, though tiring.

Reminder of God’s Faithfulness

Training Leaders

If our leaders are indeed an asset, equip them. While courage and patriotism are admirable traits in a warrior, we can’t expect them to win a war just because they have good heart motives. Having the right heart posture is important, but so are getting their hands trained and bodies built.

We can therefore do more than just occasionally reminding our leaders to love their people as Christ does. We need to give them tools, so that they can be effective. We need to watch the way they live out their lives, because the people are watching and learning from them. We need to drive them towards discipline, so that they can disciple. We need to build them up to be role models of what the Church should stand for, because they are the key to building up the body of Christ. An effective warrior has not just an admirable heart attitude, but his hands and body are geared up for war.

If Christlikeness is what we strive for in our time on earth, those who lead got to be already on their way towards it. They need to be ahead of the people in order to point the way. If we rely on leaders to build our people deeper, we need to invest our resources in them.

It may take a lifetime to do so simply because we are not perfect afterall, but at least we strive to go beyond just positioning their hearts right. At the end of the day, isn’t this what striving for Christlikeness is about as well? It’s not that we think we will ever attain perfection by our own efforts, but we give our very best to live our lives unto our Lord nonetheless.

Equip our leaders with tools, so that they can pass these on to the next generation. Our leaders are important.

Training Leaders

Burnout

Met ST for dinner the other night. Amongst the things we talked about was our faith journey. She left church about 2-3 years ago. There I was, hoping to be a channel that brings her back and yet at the same time, sharing my own struggles. I wanted to be real, I wanted to let her know that I feel her.

Ironically, she ended up being the one encouraging me to take precaution against burnout. She explained that that was what happened to her, and she’s finding it difficult to get back. Move on to another group if you have to, take a break if you have to.

This struggle is taking longer than expected. I’ve lost track of how long it’s been since the first time I struggled over whether I should turn up in church the next morning. I still do.

Man, I don’t know what’s going on anymore. I don’t know what I can do to help myself. God is still real to me, but community is… I’m doubting that.

Community is important. And a recent reflection I did about what matters to me most is still people. The things I enjoy most is because of people.

But that’s the thing – I don’t find that I’m in a community. I feel more like I’m just fulfilling an obligation rather than relating.

Maybe it’s me, too. What shall I do to change it?

Burnout

Progress

Progresses in relationships are fulfilling. After about a year, finally made some progress with the mentee. Went out last night, talked about stuff in our lives. I was surprised that she opened up both her past and her present.

It’s also been a long time since I took an aimless walk around a mall with a friend. You know those kind where you aren’t actually shopping but just want to talk while walking? That kind. AMK Hub happened to mean a lot to us both too, though for different reasons.

Marking the night of fellowship with this post :) Also found someone to spend my birthday leave with, in Ubin wheeee!

Progress