Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Ageing Trusting in God

David Parker's chapter on "The Sayings on Marriage and Divorce" in his The Living Text of the Gospels was God-sent. I read that in Woodlands Regional Library. I am preparing a sermon on Mark 10:2-12 on Jesus' teaching on marriage, divorce and the possibility of re-marriage. I thought I just got over preaching 4 sermons during the Day of Prayer last month, but in 2 weeks' time I shall be preaching again in Chapel. It's my turn, once a year which means it is unlikely I will preach in Chapel in the next Semester. Whew!

This morning I shared a 12-minute devotion with TTC staff on "Ageing trusting in God" based on Isaiah 46:3-4 and Psalm 71:7-8 and vv. 17-18. I shared how we humans worry about so many things, especially when we are getting older; whether we can sustain our current standard of living once retired and also worried about our health. I shared how the Isa 46 text meant for me even as a young man in my late 20s when I gave up everything to follow God. I shared how I served among the indigenous peoples of Borneo for 14 years with low pay. How was that possible? Because of God's promise that even in my gray hairs He will carry me and God will not forsake us. I shared how as we age we do not become irrelevant because God still wants to use us "to proclaim his strength to the next generation".  I shared about my preaching last Sunday where I spoke to many youths in the 2nd service and felt I was not touching them in their needs. We need to understand our generation Y better and minister to them. I shared that as a Christian there is no such thing as retirement as we will serve God until it's time the Lord calls us home. I sensed many of the staff were blessed and praised be the name of the Lord.

And later tonight I shall be sharing a 20-minute devotion on prayers. I was just looking with envy on Mike Bird who got his PhD about the same time as I got mine but he is way ahead (30 publications or so) with his writing and publications. Mike is going to serve at Ridley College, Melbourne next year and may he prosper there in the Lord. I have not published anything since 2005. I have written about 5 essays that need polishing up (footnotes). But I have been preaching non-stop in the past 4 years. One sermon takes about 20 hours, 100 sermons take 2,000 hours - with that kind of time you can write 2 or 3 full-length monographs. Lord, shall I stop preaching and write? There is a time for everything, says the Lord!

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