Year-end Thoughts

year-end thoughts
Wow! What a year it was! It’s December 31, 2012 and it’s a year-end, the last day of this year! And these past few days, I’ve been thinking and looking back at my blog posts. (I have just transferred my blog from Joomla! to WordPress) What a year it was! I now can see the value of a blog.

It used to be that diaries were used to record one’s thoughts, activities and whatever—and it was a private thing that you do. With the advent of the internet, what used to be written in diaries are now in blogs—and it can been read by everyone if you wish to to make it public. This year-end gave me the time to do just that.

Looking Back at Year-end

As I read my past blogs (many of those posts sounded “theological“—sorry about that hehe…), I can’t help but thank the Lord for helping me and guiding me all the way through my ups and downs in life. I started this blog right after my retirement from full-time ministry in February 2009. And from reading and looking back at all those years, all the thoughts and emotions during those turbulent years of my life came back. I thank the Lord for helping me out through those years.

This year has been a challenging year—filled with joy as well as sorrow. For example, on March 1, I had my first experience of what it was like to have a very high blood pressure which made me dizzy—the whole world turning around in front of me—as I was driving at high speed at the expressway!

It made me realize I’m no longer young and I’m no longer able to do things which I was able to do so easily during my younger days. I’m no longer as healthy as I used to be. Life is so fleeting—“here today and gone tomorrow” as the saying goes. This year also, a fellow pastor and dear friend who was a pilot passed away so suddenly—just like that—and he’s gone. But life goes on and those of us who are left behind have to carry on with life and live it to the fullest. It will be interesting as I become a senior citizen in a couple of years—God willing.

Looking Forward at Year-end

Life has always been filled with challenges. We have our triumphs as well as our trials. But we don’t give up. We’re filled with hope. We have hope in Jesus Christ. He gave us his assurance. He is preparing a place for us. Life can be tough but he will never leave us nor forsake. No one—no, nothing whatsoever—can separate us from God’s love. We will be with him when the time comes (Second Coming) or when our time comes (when we die)—whichever comes first.

And what is even more reassuring is that even right now—in our present life—we can already enjoy, participate and fellowship in the loving relationship of our Triune God through our Lord Jesus Christ. He is already with us right now. Despite our trials and challenges, we can have inner joy all the time even in this our lifetime.

This year, I hope to write more often and more openly about my thoughts and feelings as a Christian going through life and love in Jesus Christ.

Thank you Lord for the past year. Looking forward to another wonderful year. Happy new year to all!

Will God Really Forgive Me?

Will God Forgive Me?Over a week or so ago, a plumber was at home to fix a plumbing fixture. The landlady normally calls for him to fix whatever problems we may have with our rented apartment.

After he had checked the plumbing problem, I was surprised that he lingered a little bit more and was not in a hurry to leave. I thought that was a bit odd and I was getting a bit impatient as we both stood at the door engaging in conversation. I was hoping he would leave soon ’cause I had other things to do. I was “busy.”

Will God Forgive Me of My Past Sins

But then he asked, “Pastor, will God really forgive me of my past sins?” That surprised me because I thought he didn’t know that I was once a full-time pastor. Word gets out fast in the neighborhood I would suppose. He asked me about forgiveness. Anyway, to make a long story short, I assured him that God loves him and that all his past sins have already been forgiven. He need not worry about it. The burden of trying to appease an angry God surely was on his mind. I told him that God loves him so much and that his sins were already forgiven. He felt so relieved to have been given such an assurance. He said his past sins bothered him for many years knowing that he really did something that was really, really bad. He wasn’t sure about God’s forgiveness. Will God forgive him? Will he not enter heaven? These thoughts bothered him.

I saw the joy on his face very much relieved having been given the assurance that God has really forgiven him of his past sins. He finally went out the door very much a happy man knowing what God’s forgiveness truly is all about. I was joyful myself that God has used me in such an unexpected way to share the good news to a man who was conscience-stricken all his life because of his past sins. His face brimmed with joy as he walked out the door.

Truly, knowing the truth does make a man free—free of guilt, sin and shame. Free of living a fearful life wondering all his life if he could enter heaven. God through Jesus Christ gives us the assurance. God loves us and he has already forgiven us. Through Christ, it’s already a reality. The only question that remains is, will you accept this love and forgiveness from a loving God or will you reject it? Will you repent and believe this good news? I’d say accept it and enjoy life forever more.

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