Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Walking on a Tight Rope

Often times in our lives we have to juggle several things at one time, a balancing act between careers and families, work and recreation, or even catching enough sleep. I almost cancelled my trip to Perth last week because of what I knew would face me when I got back. This is my 3rd consecutive day of teaching and there are two days to go after today. In fact, I would have loved to rest for a few days since I hardly had 4 hours sleep a day in Perth over six days. The weather took a turn for worse the first day of the Conference and lo and behold from a hot and humid Singapore, I landed in a cold and wet Perth.

As the Conference's sessions were exciting for me in most parts, it kept me going on adrenalin at times. Meeting Professors from America and Europe for the first time kept me enthused like a school boy seeking autographs from his idol. It was an exciting and most fruitful of Conferences, indeed the most worthwhile of recent Conferences which I attended.

So this morning I got up at 5am to prepare for my class tomorrow on the Gospel of Matthew and now I am writing on NT interpretation of Paul's letters for today's 9am class. For a whole day last Tuesday, the Asia-Pacific Liaison committee of the SNTS met with 11 Asian scholars, perhaps wondering why most Asian scholars could not get their publication track going. I will tell you why - if I teach less and if I preach less, then 1 or 2 monographs within 5 years would not be much of a problem for me as the case with most Western scholars. But I rather teach and I will still preach because God's voice through His Word must be heard by all, while many monographs collect dust on shelves. I am not being pessimistic or cynical because I have met 3 or 4 scholars of Revelation (all of them were most friendly and chatted with me) during the Conference, but none of them have read my book published in 2005, while since 2005 until now, thousands upon thousands have heard the preaching of God's Word through his servant and are blessed. So am I going to give up preaching just to write a book which no one may even read except for a review or two in some unknown journal articles?

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