Another Year

SG51. It’s almost one week since the National Day Parade and I’ve been somewhat affected by the patriotic fervour. Can’t blame myself, I volunteered to be deployed for the celebrations. Was at the National Stadium earlier than the rest and left later than everyone else.

I love the old national day songs, Count on Me Singapore, Stand Up for Singapore, etc. They invoke the patriotic feelings and make me proud to be a Singaporean. The recent pop/rock genre songs have lacked the ‘feels’ if you put it that way.

Well, IMHO, the earlier NDP celebrations were about nation-building, a celebration to spur patriotism and nationalistic feelings, national unity, how we can contribute more to the growth of our nation.

After 50 years, the NDP has become a party. A time of excess and revelry, a celebration to just live it up. Well, the mentality is that we’ve worked so hard to make this great nation, now’s the time to enjoy. That’s what most of our younger generation has learnt. They have learnt to take for granted the toil and travail of our nation’s first citizens, as life has become easier and easier.

Everywhere, calls are being made, not to train the character and build our youth to be resilient and work through obstacles, but to tailor everything to their needs. To cater to each and every person whims and fancies. Gone are the good old days when hard work was the norm. The younger generation are taught to wait around a pursue that dream job. They are taught that they deserve better. When they don’t accomplish, the system is blamed. Teachers and schools are faulted. Government is faulted. Everyone and everything else is the problem. Selfishness reigns.

It’s just a random thought, and it won’t go a long way in solving the problem, but
#I wish Hugh Harrison would come back and start writing our NDP songs to have everyone singing the same anthem again.

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My Church is 7!

7 years as a mission, 7 years as an independent church. Ambassador Baptist Church, the church I have grown up with and grown to love. 

Thank you, my church, for the friendships made through you. The opportunities for service that you have afforded me. The hardships, the toils, the distresses, the problems, that you have given to me and my family. Truly, you have made me grow up fast. You have been used of God to make me mature in the faith. 

But dear church, you are still young, and I hear and see that as churches grow older, they tend to be attracted to the world and go down the path of destruction. My church, be forewarned, the path ahead is treacherous, but by God’s grace, you will grow more and more into the pure and spotless bride that Christ wants you to be. And may I, also, grow more and more into the likeness of Christ with thee! 

Blessed 7th Anniversary! 

0213hrs

It’s 0213hrs. I’m dead tired. It’s been a long day of work that started at 6:20 AM the day before. In between, I’ve only had time to have a 20 minute breakfast, an hour’s worth of break, and time for a one hour dinner. I’ve spoken to the old, I’ve spoken to the young. I made an arrest, done proactive checks and patrols. It’s late now. I’m going to sleep. Thank you Lord, for seeing me through and granting me opportunity to make an impact on the lives of the young people. Goodnight Singapore, the country that I belong to, and the homeland I defend. 

Revamp

Retaining an the old title and tagline, I decided to redesign my cluttered blog theme. I decided to opt a a simplistic, stripped down design, that would allow me to blog on the move and update it more regularly. Hope you all will like the new designs and layout!

I’m still serving my National Service in the Singapore Police Force, and just waiting to run out my service in December. Due to enter as a University freshman next year August, I’m praying for God’s will to be done in my life as I walk closer to Him. Hope to be blogging more regularly here and on my sister blog:

http://www.nationalchristianacademy.wordpress.com

Farewell!

Home Sweet Home

Well, I’m back to blogging on my home blog again. After a year of inactivity, I have learned to treasure the year I spent just gaining experiences and in general, doing the things I loved, blogging, sharing my life experiences, teaching in school, working with kids, serving in church. Those were the days. Yep, those were the days when I was active on my three blogs, Facebook, and Instagram. Haha.

Wow, Jeremiah, you never leave home ar. Homeschool, and then to Home Team, Always at home ar, you?

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that’s was a comment made by one of my friends back in Home Team Academy. Somehow, God has led me all the way down the path less traveled, but it has been for the greater good. I’ve had a different educational background for the past 18 years, growing up in homeschool, and had big reservations about heading to the NS, which I thought meant joining the army. Instead, fast forward 1 year. Instead of being in green, I belong to the select few in Singapore who haven’t fired a SAR, never gone on field camp, and never dug a shell-scrape. Haha. (It’s not because I’m PES C or have some sort of injury.) ‘

Well, you see, my pink letter (enlistment letter) came, I sorrowfully opened it with a heavy heart, and I saw the Singapore Police Crest on the paper, and orders to report to Home Team Academy in Choa Chu Kang. Instantly, my outlook on NS changed. Not that I was really looking forward to it, but I really wanted to know what kind of experience it would be. And it mean’t I didn’t need to leave home ground for the off-shore Pulau Tekong, and I would be a member of the Home Team, as a police officer in the Singapore Police Force.

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Well, 3rd February, 2015, I enlisted, and joined the police force. Training was real long. I graduated in May from the Basic Course, and thanks be to God, got selected to be a patrol officer, which meant another stint of training at Home Team Academy. Graduation got postponed twice due to our extremely packed schedule. SG50 year, so it was.

Well, once in a lifetime experiences, so they say, and I worked at the 28th SEA Games, SG50 weekend celebrations, GE2015, and Para-SEAgames. Real tiring, but in retrospect, real fun. God has been good, and in the course of my police training, I was also sponsored with a driving licence, a monument of God’s grace.

Well, now, I’m policing my neighbourhood, and I’ve been getting so many real life experiences few people have. I’ve been seeing the worse side of society, really dealing with thugs and broken people. I guess I wasn’t able to experience or see any of it when I was home-schooled, but now I’m kinda immersed in it. Still I much value the experiences in the police force compared to the army, where I’m allowed to stay out and maintain my ministries in church, and follow-up bible studies. When I travel to work, and see all the children and people going about their daily life, I know that the work I’m doing has direct impact on their safety and livelihood. It all adds up to a meaningful experience.

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It hasn’t been all that nice and rosy though. NS was expected to be my baptism of fire, to be an acid-test of my Christian faith. Well, it has done the part of being a real test. I have realized how easily habits of Bible reading and prayer can be lost in the busy-ness of life.

At the start, I was very hostile towards my environment. Entering training camp, I kept to a strict regimen of Bible reading and prayer, and really kept myself separate from worldly friends. People at first disliked me, but as I did my best in daily tasks, physical training and law studies, they gradually understood my stance and accepted me. By God’s grace, I led one friend to Christ and spurred Christians in camp to open their Bibles and read. I was frequently caught in discussions on faith and Christianity, and often called upon to debate/discuss with those of other religions. It was a so called high point in my Christian life. God was really good to me, oversaw my safety and gave me good supervisors.

Upon completion of my training, I was posted out to a patrol unit. I was very eager to join the patrol team and wanted to feel part of them, knowing the rest of my NS life would be spent there and as a result, my mental guard was dropped. Team members were nice to me, which helped my integration, but my guard was really lowered and I allowed many worldly influences to slip in, not because I wanted to, but I was exposed to them day in and day out. This was especially dangerous especially since I was really in the deep dark world of crime, exposed to the dark side of humanity. Compound it with my long shift-work hours, resistance to sin and temptation fell drastically.

Well, it was a time of spiritual decline in my personal life, and I was fighting tooth and nail to keep whatever remnants of it I had. After failing my driving test thrice, I was thoroughly chastened by God, and sought help to turn back. I realized that I had been allowing subtle influences to change my life and I needed to get my heart and life right with God once again.

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So upon entering 2016, I have resolved to walk closer to God, and target to be closer to another Home. My heavenly home. 🙂 Really want to become a better Christian after all these experiences and grow more in Christ!

This is but a brief summary of my past year. I hope to be able to have a chance somewhere in the near future to share my experiences with the homeschooling young men, just to share what I have gained, and that they may mentally prepare themselves for the challenges in the NS.

It is not an easy road, but God has been leading and guiding me. This year is ORD year! Yeah!

 

 

 

 

Living on Borrowed Time

Time. What a precious resource.

If only we all realized we’re living on time borrowed from our almighty Creator God.

The value of time has struck me in the recent months. If not for God’s providence, today, I would probably be in TRACOM (Police Training Command), beginning my physical training phase of my mandatory 2 years of National Service.

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Lesson 1: I learnt not to procrastinate. I knew my NAPFA (National Physical Fitness Award) test was to be taken this year, and the date of my medical showed I was likely to enlist end of the year. I knew that if I would pass the NAPFA, my enlistment would be postponed to next year as my NS would be cut to 1 year and 10 months.

Quick overview of NAPFA:
You need a silver award to defer, and the criteria is such:

1. Sit Ups: 42 and above

2. Pull Ups: 5 and above

3. Standing Broad Jump: 222 cm and above

4. Sit and Reach: 37 cm and above

5. Shuttle Run: 10.6-10.7 secs and below

6. 2.4 km Run: 12:30 and below

Well, I started off well…training myself…and slowly fizzled out. Lesson 2: When training, get a partner, it often helps to be accountable to someone. Well, I planned to pass by June, but June passed, and so did July, and August…and when September came, I got anxious as I planned to pass before my birthday so the standards would be lower. (My birthday is in October) I booked my NAPFA test date, and I asked my officer church friend for help in training….It was some sort of last ditch thing, 2-3 weeks left only 0 chin ups. (I needed 5 to pass.)

I tried for two weeks of training and I realized, before my birthday is NOT a realistic timeframe. Canceled the NAPFA. My enlistment letter came, 9 DEC. (equals have to pass two weeks before last test date is 19th Nov) I decided to book: 29th October. I gave myself 1 month! I need to pass by then!

Trained hard and 29th October was approaching. Absolutely no confidence as my chin ups weren’t even proper and I couldn’t clock 5 in. 29th October came and it was my first attempt. I passed all but one of my stations, (including a standing broad jump that hit a personal best of 225 that was just enough to pass) the last station was my pull up station, and I failed with 0. It was demoralizing, but I was spurred on as I thought to myself, I can’t do in early for two months just because I can’t do 5 pull ups!!!

During this time, I was also praying. I told God, King Hezekiah asked You for longer life and You gave him 15 years. I am just asking for 8 more weeks! I wanted to properly hand over my ministries, as well as continue to follow up some children that I had just started Bible study with. Lesson 3: Pray and learn to trust God. I claimed this verse as my promise:

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

The expected end. For me, the expected end was 8 weeks more of civilian life, but I also knew God has His ways and prepared to submit to it. BUT, it did not mean I would stop trying. I trained for my chin ups morning, noon, and night. I installed a chin up bar in my house. I wouldn’t call it a feat, only a miracle of God, but in two weeks, my chin ups went from 0 to 5. I booked my next two test dates: 12 November, and 19th November. 19th is my deadline. I went to take my NAPFA on the 12th, going in God’s confidence. (My self-confidence is very low…even my friends and family have more confidence in me than I do of myself. :P)

It was miracle day on 12 November, and I passed with flying colours.

1. Sit Ups: 42 and above RESULT: 43

2. Pull Ups: 5 and above RESULT :5

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3. Standing Broad Jump: 222 cm and above RESULT: 231 (Personal Best)

4. Sit and Reach: 37 cm and above RESULT: 52

5. Shuttle Run: 10.6-10.7 secs and below RESULT: 9.6 secs (Personal Best)

6. 2.4 km Run: 12:30 and below RESULT: 11:32 (Personal Best)

Well thank God. Starting from today, I’m living on God given time. I pray to use these 8 weeks wisely to glorify God. King Hezekiah used his 15 years to bring the Babylonian ambassadors in and bring upon Judah the Babylonian captivity. I pray I will not fall into the same trap.

God always gives His best to those who continue serving Him. During my training, I trained hard, but I purposed never, never to give up or cut down on my Bible study with my church Sunday School kids, outreach efforts, and ministry. Lesson 4: No matter what, stay faithful to God and His work. I believe God honored that. God has been faithful to me, to us. May we be faithful to Him. 🙂

I also want to thank my family who has been so supportive throughout my training, Bro. Song Leng, my trainer. 😛 :D, my youth leader, Bro. Desmond, who came to support me on the day of the test, (the photos are all taken by him) and my whole church family who was behind me with prayer throughout my training. Thank you all! 🙂

OURS: Taylor Swift

pi5ey8RrTPeople ask, why do you know about Pop culture? Why do you research? My take: I’m concerned for the young people out there who are eating garbage without knowing it! My heart is to warn and encourage them to stay off the path of sin. A collection of over 500 Christian songs is available to anyone who would have them. PM me at: myfather’sbusiness@outlook.comWell, I wrote this post two years back at the height of Taylor Swift’s popularity. She still is very popular, along with Music band 1 Direction. This song…is almost everything the pop culture stands for. Let’s look at the analysis:

Elevator buttons and morning air
Strangers’ silence makes me wanna take the stairs
If you were here we’d laugh about their vacant stares
But right now, my time is theirs

Seems like there’s always someone who disapproves
They’ll judge it like they know about me and you
And the verdict comes from those with nothing else to do
The jury’s out, but my choice is you

So don’t you worry your pretty little mind
People throw rocks at things that shine
And life makes love look hard
The stakes are high
The water’s rough
But this love is ours….

Many of you know this song by heart… (yep Taylor Swift is popular with the teens isn’t she? I hear she’s won 17 out of the 23 nominations for the teen choice awards)

What does her song really mean?

Elevator buttons and morning air
Strangers’ silence makes me wanna take the stairs
If you were here we’d laugh about their vacant stares
But right now, my time is theirs
You guys know the background, if you don’t, hear, (I am sorry) here it is. Taylor Swift is off to work, but her mind is already on her boyfriend. What a way most teenagers start their day. Instead of thanking God who gave them life and breath, and praying for the people around them, she’ll rather be alone taking the stairs. (Psalms 69:34 Let the heaven and earth praise him, the seas, and every thing that moveth therein.) Where is the effort and focus that God wants us to put in our work? (Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; forthere is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.)  This ‘out of this world’ mindset has taken many youth by storm. I know you easily identify with Taylor Swift, why? She’s in the flesh, and often, we Christians are in the flesh too. (Please read on, even if you disagree or don’t feel like it. I welcome your comments or feedback. If you wish to contact me, direct your emails to myfather’sbusiness@outlook.com)
 
Seems like there’s always someone who disapproves
Well who’s she talking about? Parents? Others? God?
(Proverbs 18:17 He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him.) 
They’ll judge it like they know about me and you
God knows everything. Others, Parents, judge based on the best ability of their knowledge. But if you are in a Christian family, your parents judge based on God’s Word. (Hebrews 4:12  the Word of God…is a discerner of thethoughts and intents of the heart.)
And the verdict comes from those with nothing else to do
Judging is a holy command from God. (John 7:24 …judge righteous judgment.)
The jury’s out, but my choice is you
The jury’s out, BUT my choice is you. The I don’t care what others say, I am going my on sinful way. Israel was in trouble because of this sin.
(1 Kings 11:33 Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in mine eyes, and to keep my statutes and my judgments, as did David his father.) 
So don’t you worry your pretty little mind
People throw rocks at things that shine
(Isaiah 5:20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!) Suddenly, sin becomes things that shine. Satan is directly appealing to the youth here: “Don’t you worry about what others say, you know why? You are always right and they are wrong.” Sounds like what he said in the Garden of Eden. (2 Corinthians 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.)
 And life makes love look hard
This statement comes from a warped, disgusting definition of love. What is love? See (I Corinthians 13) Love is hard. You have to give, you have to sacrifice, you have to die.  (John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.) If dying for your friend is easy, then love is easy.
The stakes are high
The water’s rough
Taylor Swift here in this two lines demonstrates she knows the consequences of sin. THE STAKES ARE HIGH. But what is at stake? Morality. Obedience. Submission. God gave Israel high stakes and rough waters too.  (1 Kings 9:6-9But if ye shall at all turn from following me, ye or your children, and will not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods, and worship them: Then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have hallowed for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people: And at this house, which is high, every one that passeth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss; and they shall say, Why hath the LORD done thus unto this land, and to this house? And they shall answer, Because they forsook the LORD their God, who brought forth their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and have taken hold upon other gods, and have worshipped them, and served them: therefore hath the LORD brought upon them all this evil. )
But this love is ours
BUT. How sad. The word but has been used twice already.  (Ecclesiastes 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; BUT they have sought out many inventions. ) Taylor Swift and many of our youth are seeking other inventions.
You never know what people have up their sleeves
Ghosts from your past gonna jump out at me
Lurking in the shadows with their lip gloss smiles
But I don’t care, cause right now you’re mine
Seriously, what kind of nonsense is she talking about? Its tough just to understand these words.The only fact is, she doesn’t care, she’s got a boy, and that’s all that matters.
And it’s not theirs to speculate
Oh is it? But we just saw that God’s Word commands us to judge righteous judgment.
If it’s wrong and your hands are tough but they are where mine belong and
Its always “I know its wrong…but.” (Ecclesiastes 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright;BUT they have sought out many inventions. ) Taylor Swift and many of our youth are seeking other inventions.
I’ll fight their doubt and give you faith with this song for you
Who exactly is she fighting? God’s Word says,  2 Timothy 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; Who she’s opposing? Herself. Sin destroys. I sure pity her, and many of the youths who have fallen into the same trap.
Cause I love the gap between your teeth
And I love the riddles that you speak
I know, guys. She’s just describing the boyfriend that she’s got. I don’t care what his name is. But he’s not her boyfriend anymore. Where’s her LOVE?
And any snide remarks from my father about your tattoos will be ignored
Wow. Snide remarks from her father about his tatoos will be ignored…. God’s Word has more ‘snide remarks’ :  (Leviticus 19:28 Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, NOR PRINT ANY MARKS UPON YOU: I am the LORD.)  I guess her father’s sound advice turns out to be ‘snide remarks.’ Methinks most youth will say what I am writing is ‘snide remarks.’
Cause my heart is yours
Who does her heart belong to?  (Proverbs 23:26 My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways.) It applies to daughters too.
Teenagers, I am not trying to be a spoilsport. I am a teenager myself, a 16 year old who wants to have fun too. But I am a Christian first. And I can’t have fun outside of God’s boundaries. As of now, I am living the abundant life. I have my struggles, as do you. But I have Christ, my heart is His. It belongs to no one else. If you listen to this music I plead with you to seriously consider the error of your ways. It is time to repent dear youth. I love you in the Lord. There are many other ways to enjoy life. Taylor Swift’s music, can I say, is the music from hell. It smells of rebellion, and every foul and evil thing. This is only an analysis of the lyrics. I haven’t even got into the music, which is a separate message. I beg of you to repent, if the following paragraph below is your response, God help you. I will pray and hope God will show you the error of your ways.
Seems like there’s always someone who disapproves
They’ll judge it like they know about me and you
And the verdict comes from those with nothing else to do
The jury’s out, but my choice is you
So don’t you worry your pretty little mind
People throw rocks at things that shine
And life makes love look hard
The stakes are high
The water’s rough
But this love is ours
Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you. 
Hosea 10:12 
DISCLAIMER:
I DID NOT WATCH TAYLOR SWIFT PERFORM OR HEAR HER ALBUMS. I MERELY DID A CRITIQUE OF HER LYRICS WHICH ARE SO FREELY AVAILABLE.

It’s been a long time…

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me and dad photo from my recent study trip to Thailand. more on that in another post!

Oh yes, It’s been a long time since I’ve posted on Standing for the Faith. My activities for a good part of this year have been on Christian education, and I’ve been more active on my other blog: www.nationalchristianacademy.wordpress.com.

Just would like to share this song which was the theme for our recent Vacation Bible School:

Build It Well:

We are building every day,
In a good or evil way,
And the structure as it grows,
Will our inmost self disclose,

Chorus:
Build it well! (Build it well!)
Whate’er you do; (Whate’er you do;)
Build it straight! (Build it straight!)
And strong and true. (And strong and true.)
Build it clean! (Build it clean!)
And high and broad; (And high and broad;)
Build it for (Build it for)the eye of God!(the eye of God!)

Till in every arch and line,
All our faults and failings shine,
It may grow a castle grand,
Or a wreck upon the sand.
Do you ask what building this,
That can show both pain and bliss,
That can be both dark and fair?
Lo, its name is character.

Its a wonderful song, actually a very old hymn. I unearthed it when I was looking for the theme song for the VBS.

The score is here: http://www.hymnary.org/hymn/OU21900/page/60 (I like Hymnary.org! Great place to get scores!)
Audio: https://app.box.com/s/sxquwqac8ilhg9ys4sj2
(The audio was a informal duet done by me and my dad so the VBS workers could learn the song. 🙂 )