Sunday, July 29, 2007

Chow Kit Street Kids

Today in a lunch meeting of our small group leaders, pastors, and elders, a concern came up that we as a church should consider how to focus and mobilize ourselves to meet some social needs in our city -- how to be the hands and feet of Jesus in Kuala Lumpur. A specific example mentioned was the street children of Chow Kit, KL's red light district.

This afternoon later, while browsing news on the internet, I saw a headline, "Helping Malaysia's street children" which linked to the video report below from Al Jazeera. Coincidence? Or God-incident? You tell me.

We will be exploring the possibilities and taking some steps soon, I believe, to follow the Spirit's guidance into the lives of at-risk children in KL. We have the resources. It only remains to be seen whom God will raise up as a leader, and who will follow.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Waxing Nostalgic with "Tammy"

Dear reader, you may think that this is an odd music video for me to link to, but actually it represents an old memory from my childhood -- not the movie, the song. Debbie Reynolds, that icon of Hollywood wholesomeness sings a melancholy love song called, "Tammy". My parents sang it as a lullaby for my sister and me when we very young. Oh, the memories! Back scratches, "Tammy" and "Can I have a glass of water, please?"

The song is from the 1957 movie "Tammy and the Bachelor" starring Debbie Reynolds, Leslie Nielsen, and Walter Brennan. Click here to watch and listen to the song. The lyrics are here.

The picture is of Debbie from the 1950s. And for my younger readers, that is a record player she is sitting next to. [It's for playing music recorded with grooves on double sided vinyl discs -- not for hip-hop groups or DJs to scratch with. :-) ]

Monday, July 16, 2007

Our Current Alpha Group Photo

Click photo for larger view.
Alpha Weekend Away
Awana Resort, Genting Highlands, Malaysia
14-15 April 2007

*Photo credit, Immanuel Dalantau; but actually taken by an unnamed security guard with Immanuel's camera :)

Alpha Weekend Away -- God's Spirit Visits Us

I just returned today from our Alpha Weekend Away in Genting Highlands, Malaysia. In the middle of our eleven-week course, 26 of us went up for a weekend of fellowship, fun, food, and learning. The three teaching sessions were centered on the person and work of the Holy Spirit -- the Spirit of Jesus. And He visited us in wonderful ways today. After the morning session, entitled, “How Can I Be Filled with the Holy Spirit?”, several people made professions of faith in Jesus, and others were convicted by the Word of God causing them to confess and to ask to be forgiven, filled, and empowered by the Spirit of God. And He was faithful to meet with us. There were many tears shed, inner wounds healed, and some prodigals found the love of the Father. Praise His Name!

It was truly an international gathering. Ten countries were represented, including a few from “restricted access” nations. For the sake of their security, I won’t mention names or countries.

I will, however, thank God for our Alpha Team: Derrick (ministry leader), Michelle, Ivy, Chwan Keng, Immanuel, Musa, Ian; and small group leaders/helpers this time: Don, Kurt, Amir, and Mahamoud. Other helpers have been, and were for this weekend, Martin and Irene. Up until recently, our scrumptious dinners were faithfully provided by Wai Song and Christine; now Chris and Winnie are handling the catering. God bless you all!

This is our ninth course in three and a half years. These folks, and others before them, have worked hard and patiently as volunteers for the joy of seeing people come to faith in Jesus and experience the fullness of His Spirit. Several new believers from Alpha have moved on to other countries because of jobs or studies; some have continued to work with us in Alpha as helpers and leaders; and other new believers are serving now at The Bridge in other capacities.

Every time, the weekend away strengthens ties of friendship in the group -- even when some participants do not yet come to faith. We grow closer together, and the Lord keeps working to draw people to Himself. And every Alpha Weekend, He answers our prayers for the pouring out of His Spirit on believers and seekers. What a loving, faithful God we serve!

If you'd like a report on the fun stuff -- the entertainment night -- I bet Immanuel and Musa will have something on their blogs. It was a great time of good, clean fun, MC'd by Mahamoud! :-)

P.S. (16 July) Now Immanuael has a post up, and a photo; but Musa's down with a sore throat. :-( Praying you'll be well soon, brother!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Tagged -- Five Things I Dig about Jesus

I've been tagged by my friend Sugar Jeffcoat...

The rules are simple:

1. Those tagged will share 5 things they dig about Jesus.
2. Those tagged will tag 5 other bloggers.

Five Things I Dig about Jesus...
  1. His intimacy with God: He spoke and acted only according to His Father's directions.
  2. His friends: He hung out with sinners.
  3. His grace: He never shamed anyone who had already been condemned by the religious crowd.
  4. His method: He called and trained very ordinary people as leaders of His movement.
  5. His wisdom: He confounded the Pharisees every time they tried to trip Him and trap Him with a question.
And now I tag...

Amir (hurry up and get a blog!)