Wednesday, June 19, 2024

10 Days

I spent exactly 14 days in New Zealand before returning to Sabah at the end of May 2023. I spent the time with my son who was working at home (started the day I arrived until I left - how convenient by God's grace). I thought I needed to spend some time with him before he embarked on his wedding planned at the end of 2023. Everything went according to plan, and as a dad I had done my duty, so my good friend noted in Singapore now that my son is independent and working in Auckland and supporting a wife as well who should find work after she gets her driver's licence. And now I have 10 days left in my apartment and I do not want to leave on the last day, giving a few days' breathing space. By this Friday I should finish marking my papers.

Last Legs

My legs are still holding up. I have been carrying many boxes of books and stuff. Almost 20 boxes on my last count to pack my stuff back home from my College's residence. Soon it won't be my College but former College. It is also the shortest time I have served anywhere unless I count my one-year stay in Melangkap in the beginning of my "career" in Christ as a lecturer in an interior Bible College before being elected Treasurer-General. It comes a full circle. Even my short pastorate in Ranau was one year and three months before I concentrated full-time to serve at the SIB College in Namaus, about 20 mins from Ranau town.

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

The Last Good-byes

I thought three weeks ago, the faculty photo would be my last photo before I leave this place for good. But today there was a group of visitors and I joined them for lunch entering in the hall a few minutes before the event ended. As we walked out of the auditorium after taking a photo with the visiting Seminarians (35 or 36 Professors from PUTS), I happened to walk beside one Professor and with my usual cheerful self, I introduced myself and we chatted as we walked for lunch. I was told that his PhD was from a German University and his thesis is published in German. I thought I should give him a couple of books since the only OT commentary in English that I wrote is in the Song of Solomon so I gave him a copy of that and also Departure Points.

Monday, June 10, 2024

Preaching on Sunday (Micah 5:5)

I preached on Sunday for about 50 minutes. The praise and worship did not begin until 9.40am after a 9am start. Only at about 10.20am I was called up to the pulpit and preached a sermon titled, "True Wisdom" or in Malay "Hikmat yang benar" from James 3:13-17.  I did not expound on the whole passage because I wanted to speak on another three passages from other parts of the Bible. First, I spoke about what true wisdom entails according to the apostle James. Then, I expounded on James 3 and said that true wisdom, a wisdom from heaven is proven by the life we live according the fruits thereof. It is just words but actions or deeds of wisdom in gentleness. I explained what heavenly wisdom is, peaceful, easy to appease, not raucous, not jealous or self-seeking because where there is envy and self-interest, there is disorder or disunity and every kind of evil (James 3;17).

School Reunion in Sandakan

Our reunion ended two days ago on Saturday night and we had a time of our lives in the town of my birth. On Saturday I met my best friend in St Mary’s Primary and Sec school. I sat in his Mercedes Benz. I told him in the past fortnight I sat in two Mercedes Benzes, first with a pastor in KL who took me to Sepang in his Mercedes and on Saturday I spent more two hours with my good friend whom I had not met for nearly 40 years. We conversed like old buddies as if we never separated.

Saturday, June 8, 2024

Sandakan’s Places of Interest

It is already the third and final day of our School reunion. We are about to visit our former School, St Mary’s Secondary School in Labuk mile 2 from Sandakan town centre. Yesterday we had a full day of activities. But lunch I was feeling the effects of touring the research centre of Sepilok centre where more than 100 researchers do their work on forestry, woods, insects, rainfall stations and conservation. After 90 mins’ tour we went to see the Sun bear conservation centre where we saw 6 sun bears being nourished by conservationists.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Moving On

First time in eight years I am going for a holidays, though I am still preaching on Sunday. The divine necessity that I preach whether it is holiday or not is upon me as it a holy calling. More than two years ago, some of my school mates and I talked about organising a reunion. In fact, it was supposed to be last year in June 2023, but postponed to today a year later. I am in the airport with my wife and we shall be flying shortly to Sandakan. Then it will be three days' reunion meetings, mostly lunches and dinners.

Monday, June 3, 2024

Moving House (5)

This is my second last trip back home with my books and with one more trip all my books will be back home to where they belong. It is only 13kms from the Seminary to my house but it is carrying the boxes of books that is my burden literally and metaphorically. How did I collect so many books? I just realized I sold more than half of 500 copies of Tuhan Tritunggal printed and it is special when a church member told me yesterday that he was really blessed by my books. As the music was loud I could not carry on a conversation even if I had wanted to. It is incredible this moving house business and I don’t fancy doing that past 60 years old. Per chance it will be my last time, God willing for He knows our frame and our frailty. Here am I Lord. Send me.

Saturday, June 1, 2024

Moving House (4)

I thought I was going to rest today but I needed to keep up the momentum of moving house. It was morning exercise once more carry four boxes of my books from the Seminary to my home. On my way I stopped by for a drink to replenish my energy. In less than 6 days I shall be going for my school reunion and am glad more than half of books are back home and after my Sandakan trip it will be more household items to bring home. I may even do a garage sale like I did in Auckland when notified of my appointment less than three weeks before the start.

Friday, May 31, 2024

Moving House (3)

I do not know whether I am making any good progress. I think I have moved out half my books from my office, about 10 boxes in all. Soon I may give myself this title “scholar on the move” because I lost count of the number of times that I had to carry my books from one place to another. More than 4 years ago I went to Singapore in the midst of an epidemic to collect my 300 books. Surely now I will buy less books and I resisted the temptation of going into a bookstore in Singapore last Monday as my luggage was already overweight.

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Moving House (2)

 It may be the second round of my house moving process that could take at least 2 weeks or longer. I have a reunion to attend and that would be my last and only vacation in the past five years. I don't think I have gone anywhere out of my city for a holiday. Plenty of book writing and preaching in the past couple of years, no doubt and my experience in STS is bitter sweet. Sweet because I got paid reasonably well compared to my previous appointments in Sabah. But much is bitter and the less said the better. But I am now in earnest moving house. Yesterday two boxes of my books started the ball rolling. Today another two boxes with three suitcases of clothes.