About Me

I have done a lot of things in my life and have also worked in many different jobs to make a living and to experience life. This blog is just some of my musings, sometimes funny, sometimes inspirational, sometimes sad, sometimes angry, sometimes simple but all the time, it's just me.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Christmas in January, Happy Birthday and Happy New Year

When You bless the day
I just drift away
All my worries die
I know that I'm alive
I get wings to fly
I'm alive ... Yeah
When You call on me
When I hear You breathe
I get wings to fly
I feel that I'm alive
When You look at me
I can touch the sky
I know that I'm alive
When You bless the day
I just drift away
All my worries die
I'm glad that I'm alive
You've set my heart on fire
Filled me with love
Made me a soul on clouds above
I couldn't get much higher
My spirit takes flight
'Cause I am alive
God, You know that I'm alive
~ Celine Dion slightly modified by Nil

Today, I end my 30 day journey of living a life of no-regrets. And it feels like it's Christmas, New Year and Birthday combined.

I have received my extraordinary gift, my life and I have an exceptional calling to be the very best God has created me to be. And I am unwrapping my gift. I will love God and I will love others, I will be grateful and I will forgive.

One thing I have taken and would like for you to take if you have been following my journey is this - Ignite and restore passion in your life.

Enjoy every single moment, it is a precious gift. Nothing ever happens without passion, it is the driving force behind all art, music, literature, drama, movie, architecture and thus life.

Do not loose passion over the stresses and pressures of life. Don't let pressure and stresses steal and kill your passion for your family, friends and even careers. Don't let them kill your passion for life.
In order to keep our passion alive and thriving, we need four key ingredients.

1. Love
This is the foundation of a passionate and purposeful life. The fuel that fires the passion in a relationship is love, it is the fuel that fires productivity at work. And love is the fuel that keeps us growing in our relationship with God.

2. Integrity
Integrity is simply uniting what we say we believe and the way we live. Lack of integrity means you say one thing and live another way. This will kill passion in your life. Our hearts become divided and we loose focus in our passionate life.

3. Forgiveness
I have spoken a lot of forgiveness in the last month. Nothing drains passion quicker than an unresolved conflict. Resentment is the great passion killer. Resentment and bitterness are corrosion agents that will corrode our lives. The people who hurt us do not suffer the consequences, we do. So forgive, forgive the hurt and bitterness and bring passion back.

4. Enthusiasm
A lot of English words derive from Greek words like enthusiasm. It comes from En and Theos. In and God. Literally meaning God within. If you want to live passionately, focus on your relationship with God, have a passionate and enthusiastic relationship with God.

Love. Integrity. Forgiveness. Enthusiasm. Passionate Life.

My goal in this journey is for me to live intentionally so that I will have no regrets. I pray that when I reach my last day on Earth, I will know that I have lived completely the life I was planned to live.

I have changed in this one month and my hope to you is that maybe some of my writing has began the thought process for you to start changing, to start thinking.

How about you? Is your mission on Earth fulfilled, finished? Are you sure? Here's a test to find whether your mission on Earth is finished:
Are you are reading this carefully? If you are, means you are alive. And if you are alive, your mission is not finished.

God bless you all and infinite love and gratitude. Please forgive me if I have cause you any hurt or suffering.

Take care and be well.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Constantly 100 Percent Statistics

Why am I fighting to live if I 'm just living to fight?
Why am I trying to see when there ain't nothing in sight?
Why am I trying to give when no one gives me a try?
Why am I dying to live if I'm just living to die?

Yeah, you know I used to weave my words into confusion.
And so I hope you'll understand me when I 'm through
You know I used to live my life as an illusion,
But reality will make my dreams come true.

So I'll keep fighting to live till there's no reason to fight
And I'll keep trying to see until the end is in sight
You know I'm trying to give so c'mon give me a try
You know I'm dying to live until I'm ready
~ Edgar Winter Group

When it comes to the game of life, just like any other game be it the Super Bowl, World Cup, NBA Finals - the final buzzer will sound and it's game over.

Statistics in fact show that the human death rate is 100 percent, nobody can go around it or cheat your way out of it. Everyone of us will die and you will experience a moment at the end of your life when the final buzzer will sound.

Everyone of us get reminders of our mortality, whether it is a cold or a grey hair or an ache or pain. How do you feel when you get these reminders? Do you think you should change your life? When and what will it take to start changing your life today?

Tomorrow, I end my 30 day journey to change my life and there have already been so many changes in my life the last 30 days.

And as I have said before, your soul is eternal, my soul is eternal, but this life, this body - it will end. One day we may stop breathing but we won't stop living, our soul will continue living eternally.

It is therefore wise to approach life with an end in mind as it is the foolish who will ignore the inevitable. This will help us live a more intentional life and make every moment count.

God could have created us all as robots, programmed us to love Him and obey Him, serve Him and follow Him - but he did not do that. He tool the greatest risk and created us with free will and He lets us choose whether we love Him, whether we trust Him and whether we desire to be with Him for all eternity.

You will not be ready to live until you are ready to die and experience something beyond life but to live each moment here on earth and prepare for eternity.

Right now, you can pray to God and ask Him to come to your life and forgive your past guilt and sins and give you a future in a great afterlife. We do not have to fear eternity, God loves us all.

Once you are prepared for eternity, you want to invest in what will last forever as well and your perspective shifts.

Imagine going for a vacation for a few weeks. Then you go to you hotel room, you don't like it, so you hire a contractor and change the wallpaper, you change the bed and pillows, get a flat panel television, you change the bathroom fittings. Then you don't like what you see outside, you you hire a landscaper to change the plants and trees and grass. You keep making changes, and then few weeks are up and you go home.

Many of us are exactly doing this on earth, we act as if we are going to be here forever and concentrate on things that seem really important but do not last.

Our focus needs to shift to things that will stand the test of time and there are only two things - God's words/guidance and People.

Learning values from God's word and applying them lasts forever. And souls live forever in eternity, as such, when you make a difference in one life, in one person, it will also last forever. That is why relationship with people are the most important thing in your life.

God has decided to keep me in this world, on this earth, in this life, just yet. It has not come time for me just yet. And when the day comes, I will see you all soon enough, in eternity. If I have made a difference in your life through my words, through my actions or in any other way, I will see you again in eternity.

God bless you all and infinite love and gratitude to all of you.

Take care and be well.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Going Green : My Soul's Spiritual Footprint

What is spiritual legacy?
What is soul's spiritual footprint?
This is my mother's
Generosity and gratitude
Feeding every hungry person who asked for food
Trusting God and daily prayers
Loving her children like a dog does, unconditionally
Infinite love and Eternal live
I do not remember her words of wisdom,
I am sure she had some along the years.
I also do not remember her good advice given.
However, etched in my mind forever
is a permanent picture of who she was
and how she lived before me.
My legacy is to be decided yet
But following the footprints left behind
By my mother and many before her
Following footprints left behind
By Mahavir, Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, Muhammad and others
Following footprints of God
Who carries me when I can walk no longer
And leaving footprints
for others to follow.
~ Nil

A lot of us are into going green, becoming more environmentally conscious, reducing our carbon footprint in this world. But a few of us think about another footprint, the soul's or spiritual footprint and increasing our spiritual footprint. To do this we need to make a most positive and lasting imprint on lives of others.

We need to make a small impact everyday because the smallest of impact makes a difference.

We do not need to become world missionaries, we do not need to be super rich, nor do we need to quit our jobs.

All we simply need to do is love and trust God, serve others, and give from what we have been given. Contribute to our unique spiritual footprint but the way we treat others.

Just like we control environmental pollution we must also control the soul's pollution, we must deal with the clutter that accumulates in our souls.

We all have hurt the ones we love most and we may try to cover up the garbage in our soul, ignore it and even pretend it is not there. We judges others. We all have sinned. But not matter how deep the stains of our sins, God can remove it and make us as clean as freshly fallen snow. God will forgive us but we must begin by acknowledging our personal need for forgiveness.

Once that is done, we must recycle God's grace and forgiveness and forgive others. There is a reciprocal relationship with the forgiveness we experience and the forgiveness we extend.

Recycling grace is giving generously what we have received from God.

God gives us forgiveness, we give shall also forgive tohers. God gives us infinite unconditional love, and we shall to give infinite unconditional love to others.

God loves us just they way we are but He loves us a lot more than to let us remain just the way we are. We are to live transformed lives, I am living a transformed life.

Grace accepts me where I am, but grace also gives me the power to change. Grace is not a little prayer I say before a meal, grace is the way I live.

Take care and be well.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Power of One

I am only one,
but still I am one.
I cannot do everything,
but still I can do something;
And because
I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse
to do something that I can do.
~ Hellen Keller

Have you heard the story of the starfish? It's a 16 page essay originally written by Loren Eiseley called the Star Thrower but I will just simply put the YouTube version below.

Most of us think that we as one single person in this world cannot make a difference to the larger problems or issues of the world. Recently, there was a video of a toy poddle being abused that became viral. Some people would think that they cannot make a difference alone.

But if we have aligned or realigned our view to God's perspective, we can make a difference, 1 starfish at a time, 1 dog at a time.

I am not just preaching but I know I have made a difference. I have made a difference in my life, at least to those who are close to me and I have definitely made a difference in Al E's life as much as he has made a difference in mine. But last year, I also made a difference in another dog's life, if you care to read, click on these links: Coco my friend and Coco's Gratitude.

If we touch one life, we can make a difference between life and death, both physical and spiritual, for another soul.

The world population is ever increasing and soon we will be hitting 7 billion population. Are you aware that more than half of these people, that is more than 3,500,000,000 live with less than MYR7 a day (US$ 2).

This statement is not to make anyone feel guilty but to say that we all have lost our perspective, our ability to see beyond our homes mainly because of our desires to control our own safe and comfortable world as well as the current culture where we are driven to acquire more rather than give more.

It is okay to have nice things, to enjoy blessings in our lives, to drink a MYR10 Starbucks latte, to buy a thousand dollar watch. But only if we long for something substantial to leave behind and we wake up and realize become mature. It is our maturity that will move us beyond ourselves and our desires.

One of the most important ways we can start to provide to the poor and opressed around the world is through prayers and through sharing God's infinite love with them.

If we want to experience the full adventure that our loves are intended to e, then we have to be willing to take action and serve those in need with God's infinite love.

Our greatest gifts of time, talents and treasures are essential to maturing and building a legacy.

I have already discussed how we can and we should use our time, talents in treaures. We all can make a difference, whether you are a teacher or a burger flipper, whether you are a PhD or a high scholl drop-out, whether you are a mother or a father, even if you are blind like Hellen Keller - we all can make a difference.

I am blessed, there are many miracles in my life and in lives that surround me, I will share some of these miracles in my blog posts next month.

I am grateful, for all the guidance and love that God has bestowed upon me.

I am filled with infinite love and I give infinite love. I am on my way to live this life passionately, to love everyone completely, to learn humbly all the lessons God has to teach me and when my time is up as when God decides, I will leave boldly.

One person can make a difference. I am making a difference. Will you?

Take care and be well.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Keeping on the path when life crashes

Who will cry when I die?
When I was born at a hefty 8 pounds 2 ounces,
I was crying,
while everyone around me was happy.
As I was growing up,
going to school
having to always look up to someone,
being the youngest of four,
I was struggling.
I studied hard, got a job,
Worked hard and become busy in the rat race,
Until all my hair turned grey,
I was lost and I lost myself.
I have been living this life and taking this journey
so that when I die,
God will be smiling, together with me,
and everyone around me will be crying.
Who will cry when I die?
~ Nil

The tragedy of life is not death. Death is inevitable and your soul will live on eternally. But the tragedy of life is what we let die inside of us while we are still living.

We smash, bang, crash our lives with busyness and we keep doing it over and over. When life crashes occur, our lives are not Lego blocks which we could keep putting the pieces together again and again.

But sometimes we will get off the path or off the track and we may get on a collision course and don't know how to apply the brakes.

Our schedule gets overloaded, our expenses get too high, we feel overwhelmed and feel the walls closing on us and everything starts to collide and we run out of time. Kaboom! Crash! Boom! Bang!

To leave an enduring legacy, we have to first get on the right road with the Master Driver, God.

And next we need to find the cause of the collision.

The first cause is collision of values. Our actions sometimes do not follow our values.

Some people will say their health is important, but never exercise nor eat right. Some may say family is important, but work often takes precedence over family and you end up in the office until late at night. Some may even say God is important but he usually just gets leftovers in time, talent and finances.

Good news is that we can look at these and realign our course right now before kaboom, crash, boom, bang.

We can begin to realign our priorities with our performance right now and the best way to do that is to examine a more serious collision.

Collision of wills. Our will colliding with God's will.

God created us and the earth and the Universe. He created 24 hours in a day. And if we still struggle to get things done in a 24 hour period, we are not doing things according to his will. God has given us enough time to get things done including rest, work, eat, pray, love and everything you plan to do.

And yet many of us keep saying there is not enough time, I wish I had more time, I need more time. Bullshit!

We get to choose the path, we can follow God or we can make our own path or you can also follow Satan of you want. So, what do you choose?

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight," Proverb 3:5.

"If there is a will, there is a way; So work hard, have willpower and you will find your way," wrote my primary school headmaster Mr Anthony in mu autograph book. Yes, it was the time of the century when we went around with autograph books to get everyone to sign and say something.

Willpower is having the will and power to stay in the middle of God's will. Trust the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in God and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit to God, trust Him and He will do this.

Trust, trust God, obey Him rather than follow your own desires.

And many of us have a control issue, we want to be in control of the vehicle and we try to wrestle the steering wheel away from God, we think we can drive better than Him. We're always telling Him how to drive and where to go.

We must learn to relax, not get nervous, let go of the wheel, relinquish control to the Master Driver. We need to trust Him even when we do not know what He may be doing or where He may be going.

When we trust completely, we live passionately, we love completely, we learn humbly and we will leave boldly. God aligns our paths and directs us to His purpose for our lives.

Next is delight yourself in the Lord, enjoy yourself, enjoy your conversations with God, enjoy your discussions with Him.

When we delight in God, our hearts desires will often change, we no longer will have our way but we will want to follow His way.

So trust, delight and finally commit. Commit your way to God and He will do this. Trust, delight and commit. Start giving God first consideration in every decision, let Him take the wheel and watch your life be transformed. Mine did.

Our time in this life is limited. If we truly want to ensure that we've fulfilled our purpose when it's out time to go, then we must stay in God's will, trusting, delighting and committing to The Path as He is the only one who can rebuild our lives and redirect us when we are on a collision course. I have done so and continue to put God first.

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Building an eternal bridge

Close my eyes, give me Your hand, God
Do You feel my heart beating, do You understand?
Do You feel the same, am I only dreaming?
Am I burning an eternal flame?

I believe it's meant to be, Lord
You watch me when I'm am sleeping, I belong to You
Do you feel the same, am I only dreaming
Or am I burning an eternal flame?

Say His name, sun shines through the rain
A whole life so lonely, and then He comes and eases the pain
I don't want to lose this feeling
~ The Bangles modified by Nil

So much in this world feels temporary, fragile, finite. Our bodies are also temporary, fragile and finite, but we are souls and that is eternal, infinite.

It took minutes for terrorist to level the New York twin towers. It took minutes for the tsunami to level the whole city of Banda Aceh and destroy many other places around the world.

We are all building bridges in our lives, but where are they leading? Are we building eternal bridges or bridges to nowhere?

All our possessions in this earth will be washed away someday, but we will last forever because our souls are eternal beings.

Even things we do daily do not last more than a day, we make the bed in the morning and it is undone at night; we wash dishes and they get dirty again - even little accomplishments do not last more than a day. So how do we build eternal bridges?

If any man builds on the foundation of God, his work will be shown for what it is and the day will bring it to light. Everyday, we choose the material of how we build our lives either temporary materials or eternal materials. And if we want to ensure a legacy that outlasts us, that can withstand the ultimate fire, we need three building materials.

Our conviction - what we stand for. Convictions taken from God's core values are eternal and never change. It is solid and secure, it has been the truth from the beginning until now and will remain for a long time.

Next is character. We will not take anything with us except our character when we die. And what is our character? If we have our convictions with God, then He will be the master sculptor and just chip away until He builds our core character, to be like Him.

God helps us to build character through our problems. Every problem has a purpose. He also gives us pressure to smooth the edges, we learn patience under pressure. We all endure tremendous stress and responsibility and He is with us through it all, as long as we have conviction.

Then He uses other people in our life to build character. Everyone has people in their lives that are hard to love and prevents us from loving them - but God wants for us to love everyone infinitely as much as He loves us eternally.

God is making our life a work of art, if we allow Him to through our convictions, He will build our character.

Finally, you cannot build a bridge alone, so we need a community of like minded people to help us to build this eternal bridge. Be it a church group or a meditation group or a group of friends that meet regularly and have the same convictions as us.

If we build our lives on convictions, character and community - we will have established an eternal memorial that will benefit countless lives for infinite generations. A bridge that ultimately leads others to God and there is no more satisfying legacy then this.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
'Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
and Grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me.
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

When we've been here ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise
Than when we've first begun.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sowing the seeds

(Sowing the seeds of love) anything is possible
(Seeds of love) when you're sowing the seeds of love
(Sowing the seeds of love)
(Sowing the seeds of love) anything is possible
(Seeds of love) sowing the seeds of love (Sowing the seeds)

I spy tears in their eyes
They look to the skies for some kind of divine intervention
Food goes to waste, so nice to eat, so nice to taste

Feel the pain, talk about it, if you're a worried man then shout about it
Open hearts, feel about it, open minds, think about it
Everyone read about it, everyone scream about it

Time to eat all your words, swallow your pride, open your eyes
High time we made a stand (time to eat all your words)
And shook up the views of the common man (swallow your pride)

(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love)
We're sowing the seeds (sowing the seeds of love)
Sowing the seeds of love, we're sowing the seeds (seeds of love)
Sowing the seeds, an end to need, and the politics of greed with love
(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love, sowing the seeds of love)
(Sowing the seeds, an end to need, and the politics of greed with love)
(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love, sowing the seeds of love)
(Sowing the seeds of love, seeds of love)
~ Tears for Fears

Faith is to believe what you do not see. You do not see God and you do not see His miracles and His love but when you have faith, you believe.
And the reward for your believe in this faith is to see what you believe.
Generation after generation stands in awe of God's work; each one tells stories of His mighty acts.
When I was in California, I went to areas where giant Oak trees were planted more than a hundred years ago. When they were planted some 150-200 years ago, the people who planted them knew that they will not have the opportunity in their lifetime to see the tree mature. Yet they planted these trees so that many generations after them would enjoy the shade of these giant oaks.
Just like that, we need to also plant giant spiritual oaks in our life to leave a legacy, we need to sow the seeds of love now even if we are never to see the tree mature in our lifetime. To do this, we need to know what we are planting, where we are planting and why.
Every day, every moment, with every action, we are planting something. But what exactly are we planting? What is the effect of our words, actions and intentions on those around us and those ahead of us? What harvest will be reaped?
When we plant seeds of love and seeds of faith, then we are planting something that will grow.
Sometimes, when you look at a seed and a pebble, there is not much physical difference but of course they are vastly different. A pebble has not life but in that one little seed, it is full of life.
Yet, some of us plant pebbles or have big impressive rock gardens - a big bank account, a big reputation, a big house, a fancy car. If all you are doing and accumulating is things to try to impress people, the moment you are dead, your influence dies with you.
The seed has to go into the ground, and in silence, die and in death, open up and bring forth a new life. We need to die to ourselves - to our selfish desires, goals and dreams - and plant an unselfish seed.
Invest in people's life and our legacy becomes like the giant oak providing life for generations to come.

Once you are the seed, remember to plant it in the right soil. All seeds have potential but if planted in bad soil, there will be no life.

People who are not interested in spiritual things are just living for themselves and planting selfish seeds. The impact of them is like footprints on the beach, here today, gone tomorrow.

Next soil is comfortable life - people who commit to God but that's it, not going or growing any deeper in their relationship with Him. When problems arrive, they give up.

Having a Life with God is not about comfort, it is about character. God grows our character when we plant seeds of faith.

Yet another seed is crowded life. This seed begins to grow and then nobody takes care, so the thorns and weeds run rampant and the young plant is choked out in the crowded life. Most of us are like this. Our days are crowded with so many things, many may be good, but soon the busyness chokes our most valuable resource out and we don't have tome for our relationship with God.

Final soil is the rich fertile soil - the God's soil of truth. These people will receive God's truth and plant it deeply in their lives like I have. And yield an impact that is hopefully felt for generations.

Finally why are we planting? What is our purpose or goal in life?

A man reaps what he sows. If you plant temporary things, you'll harvest temporary things. If you plant eternal seeds, you get eternal fruit. If you plant generosity, you will reap generosity. If you give grace and compassion, you will reap grace and compassion.

You reap what you sow, but you reap a lot more than what you sow. If you plant an apple seed, you get a tree full of apples.

When we commit to God and commit to loving others selflessly, we will get a bumper crop of blessings in our lives. We will shelter future generations and leave a timeless legacy. Sow the seeds of love, God's love.

Take care and be well.

Monday, January 24, 2011

I'll huff and puff and blow your house down

Once upon a time there were three little pigs and the time came for them to leave home and seek their fortunes.
Before they left, their mother told them "Whatever you do , do it the best that you can because that's the way to get along in the world."
The first little pig built his house out of straw because it was the easiest thing to do.
The second little pig built his house out of sticks. This was a little bit stronger than a straw house.
The third little pig built his house out of bricks.
One night the big bad wolf, who dearly loved to eat fat little piggies, came along and saw the first little pig in his house of straw. He said "Let me in, Let me in, little pig or I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down!"
"Not by the hair of my chinny chin chin", said the little pig.
But of course the wolf did blow the house in and ate the first little pig.
The wolf then came to the house of sticks.
"Let me in ,Let me in little pig or I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down"
"Not by the hair of my chinny chin chin", said the little pig. But the wolf blew that house in too, and ate the second little pig.
The wolf then came to the house of bricks.
"Let me in , let me in" cried the wolf.
"Or I'll huff and I'll puff till I blow your house down"
"Not by the hair of my chinny chin chin" said the third lil pig.
Well, the wolf huffed and puffed but he could not blow down that brick house down.
But the wolf was a sly old wolf and he climbed up on the roof to look for a way into the brick house.
The little pig saw the wolf climb up on the roof and lit a roaring fire in the fireplace and placed on it a large kettle of water.
When the wolf finally found the hole in the chimney he crawled down and KERSPLASH right into that kettle of water and that was the end of his troubles with the big bad wolf.
The next day the little pig invited his mother over . She said "You see it is just as I told you. The way to get along in the world is to do things as well as you can."
Fortunately for that little pig, he learned that lesson. And he just lived happily ever after!

Anyone heard the story above before? I am sure most of you have. Simple lesson, simple story ... the way to get along in the world is to do things as well as you can.

And yet many of us still build stray and stick houses or sandcastles. We work non-stop, ever so busy with an overbooked schedule and in the end it leaves no legacy and will be blown away by a huff and a puff or a tide that washes away the sandcastles built.

As I begin on this final section of my journey, so appropriately after the miracle of God yesterday, the focus will be on leaving boldly. It is important to understand what it means to leave boldly and leave a lasting legacy before it is too late.

The best way to create a lasting legacy and maybe the only way is to pour your most valuable resources into investments with the greatest returns. This are not financial resources nor financial returns. I am talking about time - your most valuable resource and invest it into people.

How many of us are truly building a brick house, a solid foundation to leaving a lasting legacy so that you can leave boldly? We need to look beyond our homes and investment portfolios. We need to do an on-site inspection of our current lives. We must ensure our foundation is built with concrete rather than sand or straw or sticks.

Rather than writing our name in sand, live with the name of God and only what we do for God, how we fulfill the purpose for which He made us will remain.

Don't worry when you are not recognized, but strive to be worthy of recognition.

Next is having sand dollars. There is nothing wrong with having resources and wealth as long as we realize that all material things are also just like sandcastles or straw houses. We should enjoy the material things we have but never get too attached to them.

The only way to pass the affluence is by giving, we must learn how to be givers rather than takers so we can make all the difference. If we earn and earn and do not give to others, all we will have are sand dollars and straw dollars. You can say all the chinny chin chin you want but it will be blown away.

And last of all is the obedience exam. As the mother pig said, do things as well as you can.

"Be careful how you live, not as fools but as those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity for doing good in these evil days. Don't act thoughtlessly, but try to understand what the Lord wants you to do," Ephesians 5.

Obey God because He gives you enough time to do everything you need to do, you have to spend time with Him, listen to Him and then obey Him.

When you use your influence and affluence to obey God, He will enable you to leave behind a permanent inheritance.

I am today grateful to God to have this life and I want to leave boldly. Today is my first step.

Take care and be well.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Experiencing a Personal Miracle

If magic is all we've ever know
Then it's easy to miss what really goes on
But I've seen miracles in every way
And I see miracles everyday
Oceans spanning beyond my sight
And a million stars way above em at night
We don't have to be high to look in the sky
And know that's a miracle opened wide
Look at the mountains, trees, the seven seas
And everything chilling underwater, please
Hot lava, snow, rain and fog
Long neck giraffes, and pet cats and dogs
And I've seen eighty-five thousand people
All in one room, together as equals
Pure magic is the birth of my kids
I've seen stuff that'll shock your eyelids
The sun and the moon, and even Mars
The Milky Way and flying shooting stars
UFOs, a river flows
Plant a little seed and nature grows
Niagara falls and the pyramids
Everything you believed in as kids
Colorful rainbows after it rains
there's enough miracles here to blow your brains
I fed a fish to a pelican at Frisco bay
It tried to eat my cell phone, he ran away
And music is miracle, pure and clean
You can feel it and hear it but it can't be seen.
~Insane Clown Posse

God is definitely in the miracle business. It takes only God's miracle for me to be writing this blog today. Throughout the years, God has showed me many miracles in my life and even today, a major miracle in my life (which I will share publicly another time but those close to me know what this is).

Four road signs from God has helped me to transform my journey and various forks on the road to a miraculous journey.

Sometimes I feel like I am on a one-way street and desperate for a miracle. There are two one-way streets I needed to go on to get a miraculous result. The first one-way street is to admit a need and the second one-way street is going to God as only he can lead me back to the right direction thorough his miracles.

Admit your needs, and go to God.

Stop! Look and Listen!

Stop and access what you already have before you ask for what you need. God will always ask us to work from where we are and with what we have. Then he will ask us to stop worrying and start looking. Once you take everything you have and give it to Him, your time, talent, resources, energy - then this willingness and surrender will activate God's intervention and blessings. This is when you listen and go with God.

If you want God to help you, to provide a miracle as he has provided to me today, we all need to follow the third sign and make a U-turn from negative direction to positive direction. Most people including myself tend to be negative when something bad happens, declare everything bad, nothing is good and there is no hope. But for the miracle today, my first reaction was of love and gratitude for God for the miracle he bestowed upon us.

Shift in direction, to make the U-turn requires faith and discovery. We often stifle His ability to provide the miracle even as we are praying for it because we become fixated on negative words, blame others and worry. These are not conducive to faith or shift of perspective.

I certainly have taken a U-turn today and vow to follow it through.

The final sign to follow for a miracle is Yield. You cannot achieve a miracle if you do not follow the other signs and do not follow this sign.

Yielding is giving way, allowing others to pass. It is essential that we begin serving others with God's blessings.

Most of us will want to fulfill our needs and will not be able to focus on anyone else's needs and we won't have time for anyone else because we are so overwhelmed to take care of ourselves. We are blinded by our own problems that we fail to give to others no matter how small it is.

God asks us to consider others before ourselves and to trust Him to take care of our needs and be used by Him to take care of needs of others.

It's sort of a paradox. You take care of other's needs without questioning God and some other's will take care of you. It will be a miracle. A miracles that stranger's will just stop and be willing to help out of genuine concern rather than wanting anything in return.

God wants to see this, He wants to see if we are willing to step out and serve others in need even when we have our own needs. If you want miracles in life, help others.

As Kerry and Chris say, "Somehow, someway, God works through our expectations. He works in our lives about as much as we expect Him to work in our lives. All things are possible with God.

I am grateful to all those who helped us when we were in deep need today and I am forever grateful to God for this because first thing that went through my head was, God please help us. And He did, miraculously.

I end my journey of learning humbly today and will move on to leaving boldly before ending my one-month journey. And the lesson I learned today, I am humbled by God's miracle.

Recently, more people have been reading this blog as well as commenting and I am forever grateful for this. And I would like to end with this quote for today from Haruki Murakami :
I didn't want to be a writer, but I became one. And now I have many readers, in many countries. I think that's a miracle. So I think I have to be humble regarding this ability. I'm proud of it and I enjoy it, and it is strange to say it this way, but I respect it.

Take care and be well.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Integrity - complete love, complete courage, complete truth.

Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.

A scoundrel and villain, who goes about with a corrupt mouth,who winks with his eye, signals with his feet and motions with his fingers,who plots evil with deceit in his heart— he always stirs up dissension. Therefore disaster will overtake him in an instant; he will suddenly be destroyed—without remedy.
There are six things the LORD hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes,a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood,a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers.
The man of integrity walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out.
The LORD abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight. The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.

Integrity is derived from the word integer which basically means whole numbers and not fractions. Integrity as you know is an adherence to moral principles; honesty; the quality of being unimpaired; soundness; unity; wholeness.

How many of us truly have integrity? Nobody will admit that they do not have integrity, that they live a fragmented life.

So let me admit, I do not live a life of integrity, not yet, but I am on the journey and in the process of doing so.

Most of us act one way with friends, another way with your spouse, another way with your parents, another way at work and likely another way at work.

It is not easy to live with integrity many of us would say, it is not easy to be whole and consistent through and through.

But integrity in life will fill life with peace, passion and purpose.

When I was young, we were told many stories and I loved to read Amar Chitra Katha comic books. Among my many readings, I now remember a story about an emperor and seeds.

The emperor who had nobody to take over from him called all the children in his empire and gave them all a seed and said in one year, the child that has taken care of the seed the most will be the next emperor.

All the children were surprised and went about their duties of taking care of the seed, planting it, watering it etc.

One year later, all the children brought back plants, flowers, saplings etc for the emperor but one. The one boy brought back the seed as it was given to him.

Then the emperor went to the boy and declared him the next emperor and told the rest of the crowd that he had given them all boiled seeds that would not grow. While the rest of them tried to grow the seeds and when that failed, replaced the seed with another seed. It was only this boy, who tried and nothing grew, so he took care of the seed and brought it back to the emperor as it was.

That is integrity.

And when you have integrity, the Kingdom of God will await you.

If we want to live live in an undivided, unbroken state of strength and peace, we must be complete, we must work to integrate core values and beliefs into all we do not just parts of what we do.

We have to be true to ourselves and God in every area. We do not need a policy, we just need to do out best everyday as Honest Abe Lincoln would say.

Many of us compartmentalize our lives and we tend to have many super duper excuses for our inconsistencies.

There is this story I heard that a honest man returned about ten thousand dollars he was wrongly given in his take away bag from a restaurant. The money was the to be sent by the manager to the bank next day but in a rush, the doggy bags got mixed up. The manager was relieved when the money was returned. And wanted to call the local press to tell the story but the man refused ~ it was found out later that it was because the "date" that he was on was someone else's wife.

When you play with your natural strengths and compensate for some of our weaknesses, we are true to ourself. Problem is we are always trying to impress others, we trying to do things different, trying to show off.

When we are performing to keep up an image for others, it requires a lot of effort and energy and it will divert us from our passion and God given purpose, it will rob us from our personal peace.

The secret of passion is being true to God's design for us. Rather than impressing someone, we have to influence people.

To influence people, I will need to be real, take of my mask and admit some of my faults and failures.

One lie leads to another and another and soon the lie is so big it s difficult to maintain appearances and there is no truth anymore. At some point, all the lies will escape and the cover is blown and it will wound you and sting others in the process.

When you tell the truth, it should be done lovingly, not undermine or tear down another person. Don't be Simon Cowell. You share the truth not to hurt another person but to build trust level and strength in the relationship.

Lying is the easy route, a selfish convenience and we do it because we don't love enough. Taking the easy road. The more you love, the more you have the courage to tell the truth. And to admit the truth about ourselves, to acknowledged our failures and ask for forgiveness.

Earlier in my journey, I had talked about talking to God, guardians and confessions. Be true to yourself and to God and when you have lied, seek forgiveness. God simply loves us and He will be the source of integrated life that we crave, a life of integrity, the one we are made for.

Take care and be well.  

Friday, January 21, 2011

Shelter from the Storm

'T was in another lifetime, one of toil and blood
When blackness was a virtue and the road was full of mud
I came in from the wilderness, a creature void of form
"Come in," God said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

And if I pass this way again, you can rest assured
I'll always do my best for Him, on that I give my word
In a world of steel-eyed death, and men who are fighting to be warm
"Come in," Baba said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

Not a word was spoke between us, there was little risk involved
Everything up to that point had been left unresolved
Try imagining a place where it's always safe and warm
"Come in," Amma said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

I was burned out from exhaustion, buried in the hail
Poisoned in the bushes an' blown out on the trail
Hunted like a crocodile, ravaged in the corn
"Come in," Mahavir said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

Suddenly I turned around and he was standin' there
With silver bracelets on his wrists and flowers in his hair
He walked up to me so gracefully and took His crown of thorns
"Come in," Jesus said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

Now there's a wall between us, somethin' there's been lost
I took too much for granted, got my signals crossed
Just to think that it all began on a long-forgotten morn
"Come in," Shiva said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

Well, the deputy walks on hard nails and the preacher rides a mount
But nothing really matters much, it's doom alone that counts
And the one-eyed undertaker, he blows a futile horn
"Come in," Buddha said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

I've heard newborn babies wailin' like a mournin' dove
And old men with broken teeth stranded without love
Do I understand your question, man, is it hopeless and forlorn?
"Come in," Krishna said, "I'll give you shelter from the storm"

In a little hilltop village, they gambled for my clothes
I bargained for salvation an' they gave me a lethal dose
I offered up my innocence and got repaid with scorn
"Come in," They said, "We'll give you shelter from the storm"

Well, I'm livin' in a foreign country but I'm bound to cross the line
Beauty walks a razor's edge, someday I'll make it mine
If I could only turn back the clock to when God and They were born
"Come in," the Lord said, "We'll give you shelter from the storm"
Bob Dylan, modified by Nil

OK, so I modified Bob Dylan's lyrics a little,  but all for the better.  But the point is clear, God and your guardians, whoever they may be, will always give you shelter from the storm. But yet, many of us rather remain in the storm and go into the shelter.

More than 10 years ago, my mom passed away in her sleep of a massive heart attack. I had spoken to her the afternoon before and she had just returned from seeing a doctor for severe abdominal pains which the doctor put as stomach ache and gas and duly provided her medicine for that. My mom was never a heart patient but she was a diabetic and any half baked doctor with a half baked degree would have considered to check for any heart issues, but none did.

My mom was very pious, meditating and praying every morning for two hours and most evening for another 2 hours. She exercised, she ate well, she loved all her children to all her might.

So when she died suddenly, I blamed the doctor and I blamed God to some extent. I accepted her death but after that, things with me and God were not quite the same. When my mom was around, I would make it a habit to pray in the morning and especially when I travelled somewhere. I prayed most evenings prior to going to bed. All that stopped.

Despite all this sorrow and anguish that I had for this imperfect world, God never abandoned me, my guardian always waited in the wings.

You see, in all likelihood, my rock solid foundation was mom and when she died, I did not have any foundation anymore. At least, I felt I did not have that rock solid foundation to withstand "the rain that came down, the streams that rose, and the winds that blew."

But my foundation that I have built now is rock solid, the solid center in my life .... Love God with all my heart.

With this solid center, I expect to have a solid life because without a solid core, my life will surely break apart as it has before.

I have put God first in everything I do and I have faith that he will direct me and crown my efforts with success.

Apart from a strong foundation that I have and continue to build now with God and my guardian, another primary practice for securing my foundation is having a community that cares, a human support system.

For a long time, I lacked a human support system. Wife is always there to support. But I needed a team of people around me who loved me for who I was and not what I did or how much I earned or how many times I spent on them. I needed friends who would walk into my life when everyone else walks out.

Real friends will rush in during an earthquake and catch you when times get tough. Acquaintances will be there always and while you may consider them friends, they will take off as soon as the tremors begin and leave you standing alone in the rubble.

I have nearly 500 "friends" on FacebookFacebook.

But in reality, out of these 1,000 or so, I think maybe 10 or 20 will be walking in to save me. And I am truly grateful for these 20 or so individuals. S, K, S, M, B, S, Y, P, Y, B, H, S, .... 12 and counting. And I will surely walk into their lives when other's are leaving.

Two are better than one, if one falls down, the other can help you up. Pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up.

Today's blog and journey comes at a really appropriate moment for me because of the earthquake and storm I am going through in my life.  But I am glad now I have the information that I require, which is that I have a shelter from the storm.

Come in and I'll give you shelter from the storm and surely God has.

Many a times in the past, I will try to solve all my problems and only at a last resort when all things fail, I used to pray and when prayers are not answered, I could blame God.

But that formula was backward; now in the current storm I am facing, my first response was seek God's and my guardian's advice.

When I know I start worrying, I know God been pushed out of 1st place. So, to stop worrying, stop more grey hairs in my head, stop my palpitations, stop my anger and frustration, stop my vertigo ... God is first.

After all, He says he will give me shelter from the storm, so why stay out in the storm and expose myself to all the negative elements above and shake my strong foundation that I have built.

I'm coming in cause I know You'll give me shelter from the storm. I'm coming in. The storm has got me a little drenched but I'm coming in and in the shelter I will dry up and recuperate to go back out when the storm is settled.

There are no magic buttons or instant solutions, but I am going into the shelter and I know He is going to hold me and He is going to walk me through to solid ground and He will be with me when the earth shakes and most of all He is with me when all is well.

God and my guardian has already given me His greatest gift, He knows the challenges I face, He understands how I feel, He cries with me in my heartaches and He has the power to turn this life of mine around.

Come in, He'll give you shelter from the storm.

Take care and be well.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Metamorphosis - Changing from inside out

Nature often holds up a mirror so we can see more clearly the ongoing processes of growth, renewal, and transformation from within; Metamorphosis.

Motion and commotion steal the soul; stillness restores it.

There are many doctors that you can go see if your body has a fever, or a flu or some sickness or an ailment. But what are you going to do when your soul is sick? How do you diagnose soul disease?? And what is the cure for soul disease?

We all feel the urgency to make the most of life but often distract ourselves with busyness and focus on the wrong things that will never fulfill our desires. This restlessness manifests a the dis-ease of the soul, a growing discontent with our lives. We have more things than our grandparents ever did but most of us are not any happier. We do not know how to connect with ourselves, let alone connect to those we love or even connect to God.

Our schedules are always rushed, everything is always urgent and due to this, we suffer from motion sickness or vertigo of the soul. And what do we do, we just move faster and faster and faster.

The only place to remedy the soul is from the inside, to slow down and allow time for the vertigo to stop and the motion sickness to cure.

A butterfly starts itself as an egg, which becomes a caterpillar which become a pupa which ten chrysalis and begin to metamorphose itself into the beautiful butterfly. It doesn't wait for something in the outside world to change it. It changes from inside out, becoming all that it has been created to be.

Humans, we too often wait for something or someone to change us, we blame spouses for not fulfilling us, we blame parents for not a whole bunch of things, we blame our job or workplace, we even blame the place of worship and God when we are not fulfilled spiritually.

But it is time for me to take responsibility and to be still cause spiritual growth and transformation will never occur until we finally get still and stop moving and fix attention on God. This is how the vertigo dis-ease of the soul will heal.

The caterpillar does not go into the pupa chrysalis and keep moving until it becomes a butterfly. It becomes still and emerges after some struggles as a butterfly.

The next soul dis-ease is the desire to be in control. We all have become control freaks. We try to control our problems, we try to control our pain, we try to control our spouse and our children, we try to control our emotions.

Only if we could control everything will we be happier, will our soul be at ease .... but the world does not work that way. Many things are beyond your control, and that is why the soul is dis-ease.

The cure for being a control freak is again to experience some solitude, time alone to be silent with ourselves, and our monkey chatters and super ego men. And to go with God in silence. And when we go to Him in silence, when we remove our distractions, he begins to restore our souls.

Next soul dis-ease being suffered in this household and definitely many other households is the comparison compulsive disorder. Our soul is facing this dis-ease because we are so compelled to compare ourselves to everyone and to measure our worth with all around us.

When we use status symbols to determine our worth and identity relative to others, our souls will dry up. Nothing wrong with dreaming big and hoping for better things in life, but do not compare with others. I want to have a bigger house than so and so; I wish my salary was as high as so and so; so on and so forth.

Changing from inside out, metamorphosis. When  we get real with God and others, and become transparent and be what God created us to be rather than trying to pretend to be someone else, then our distinct beauty as individuals will emerge and the soul will be at ease.

The opposite of metamorphosis is metaschematizo meaning changing the outward appearance. This word is also the origin of the word masquerade. When we stop wearing masks and change from inside, we will truly metamorphosis.

When you give yourself to others, when you provide a service, when you teach a skill to someone without any expectation of a return, you will cut through all the boundaries an connect fully. You will move from comparison to compassion.

The next dis-ease of the soul is the comfort zone virus. We all have a comfort zone where we insulate ourselves from pain, suffering, inconvenience or discomfort. But this comfort zone virus is what will steal our happiness and shrink the soul.

We cannot avoid the problems or the hurricanes or the twisters in our lives, we will all have trials in our lives. It is during our struggles that our strength will grow when we lean towards God.

God allows trials in our lives because the only antidote to the comfort zone is suffering. Buddha's Four Noble Truths teaches us about suffering and how to overcome suffering.

1. Life means suffering.
To live means to suffer, because the human nature is not perfect and neither is the world we live in. During our lifetime, we inevitably have to endure physical suffering such as pain, sickness, injury, tiredness, old age, and eventually death; and we have to endure psychological suffering like sadness, fear, frustration, disappointment, and depression. Although there are different degrees of suffering and there are also positive experiences in life that we perceive as the opposite of suffering, such as ease, comfort and happiness, life in its totality is imperfect and incomplete, because our world is subject to impermanence. This means we are never able to keep permanently what we strive for, and just as happy moments pass by, we ourselves and our loved ones will pass away one day, too.

2. The origin of suffering is attachment.
The origin of suffering is attachment to transient things and the ignorance thereof. Transient things do not only include the physical objects that surround us, but also ideas, and -in a greater sense- all objects of our perception. Ignorance is the lack of understanding of how our mind is attached to impermanent things. The reasons for suffering are desire, passion, ardour, pursuit of wealth and prestige, striving for fame and popularity, or in short: craving and clinging. Because the objects of our attachment are transient, their loss is inevitable, thus suffering will necessarily follow. Objects of attachment also include the idea of a "self" which is a delusion, because there is no abiding self. What we call "self" is just an imagined entity, and we are merely a part of the ceaseless becoming of the universe.

3. The cessation of suffering is attainable.
The cessation of suffering can be attained through nirodha. Nirodha means the unmaking of sensual craving and conceptual attachment. The third noble truth expresses the idea that suffering can be ended by attaining dispassion. Nirodha extinguishes all forms of clinging and attachment. This means that suffering can be overcome through human activity, simply by removing the cause of suffering.

4. The path to the cessation of suffering.
There is a path to the end of suffering - a gradual path of self-improvement, which is described more detailed in the Eightfold Path. It is the middle way between the two extremes of excessive self-indulgence (hedonism) and excessive self-mortification (asceticism); and it leads to the end of the cycle of rebirth. The latter quality discerns it from other paths which are merely "wandering on the wheel of becoming", because these do not have a final object.

By following the path that God has laid out. God does not want us to waste a hurt, or waste a tear or even waste a sorrow. He wants to endure suffering with grace.

Grace is the power to change. When we become still and silent, when we start serving and when we embrace suffering in our lives, then we facilitate real spiritual transformation.

Metamorphosis comes only through grace and I have started to alleviate my soul's dis-ease by grace and in the healing hand of God's grace.

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

To Everything There is a Season

To every thing there is a season,
and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.
He hath made every thing beautiful in his time:
also he hath set the world in their heart,
for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.
And also that every man should eat and drink,
and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.

Turn, turn,turn. Change, Change, Change. Change is the only thing that remains constant.

After Galveston, Texas was hit with a massive hurricane in 1900, they made radical changes. They built high sea walls to protect the area prone to be hit, the also elevated the entire city by several feet. When another hurricane hit a few years later, there was minimal impact and damage.

In life, when the seasons turn and we are suddenly caught in a hurricane, we must choose how we respond and how we change to prevent the hurricanes of the future blowing into our lives, relationships, families, marriages.

If no changes are made, the winds of change will just knock you down time and again.

Change is frightening, uncertain and threatening but if we don't learn to adapt, we will never enjoy life.

Just today, I was frustrated and holding on to something although the seasons have changed. An old house I sold for a small profit of about 15% would now within five years made me about 85% - in just 5 years and I was regretting selling the house until I decided to let go after what my wife told me. Seasons change, and I need to let go.

Sometimes we think of happy times from the past and wish we were back in it. Why can't we be like when were were 15 years ago?

What do you consider the happiest season/time of your life? Do you often wish you were back in those times? How does your present life compare to it?

Having fond memories of good times is wonderful but also be aware if nostalgia is causing you to miss out on present opportunities.

I wish I was still working there? I wish I was still doing this? I wish I had kept that house? I wish I had travelled when I was younger? I wished I had left this country?

Dreaming and wishing for the future is great but don't let your wish to be something of the past to hold you back from the opportunities of today, of the present.

When you do get hit by a hurricane, if you feel like you are going through hell, keep moving ... eventually you will come out. If remember sometimes, go with the flow. If you cannot go through the hurricane, you are in a brink of losing hope because you cannot see anything through the storm and nothing can help you to get your bearings and you are about to give up, don't!

We tend to look at immediate problems and current collateral damage rather than any potential positive outcomes. We become negative, depressed and desperate to escape from the pain and discomfort of the hurricane rather than looking beyond the hurricane.

Remain calm, God does not cause painful changes in our lives, He uses them and brings good out of them.

When our ship is hit by a hurricane, we immediately start throwing our cargo. Cargo which we normally consider fragile and precious just gets thrown overboard because of our fear of the hurricane. We need to re-evaluate and not change our priorities when seasons change and we are hit by hurricane. What cargo would you throw overboard first and what would you keep and continue sailing?

We must learn to ride out the storms in our lives. And we must also learn when it is time to drop the anchor.

But with God as our Navigator, we will know when to ride with the storm and when to drop anchor and stand firm. Just as Lord Krishna was Pandav Prince Arjuna navigator and guided him to a victory despite facing a stronger storm of an army.

What storms are you facing in your life today? Are they making you stronger or blowing you apart? Remember, you don't get to choose the storms but you get to choose your response to these storms in your life. Choose wisely, to everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Do you need directions? Are you following your GPS?

Krishna showing Arjuna the way in Bhagawad Gita
In the Bhagawad Gita, in a very clear and wonderful way, Krishna describes the science of self-realization and the exact process by which a human being can establish their eternal relationship with God. The Gita is pretty much a conversation with Krishna and Arjun. It is part of the larger epic Mahabharata.

The Bhagavad Gita begins before the start of the climactic battle at Kurukshetra, with the Pandava prince Arjuna becoming filled with doubt on the battlefield. Realizing that his enemies are his own relatives, beloved friends, and revered teachers, he turns to his charioteer and guide, Krishna, for advice.

On their return from banishment the Pandavas demanded the return of their legitimate kingdom. Duryodhana, who had consolidated his power by many alliances, refused to restore their legal and moral rights. Attempts by elders and Krishna, who was a friend of the Pandavas and also a well wisher of the Kauravas, to resolve the issue failed. Nothing would satisfy Duryodhana's inordinate greed.

When war became inevitable. Both Duryodhana and Arjuna requested Krishna to support them in the war, since he possessed the strongest army, and was revered as the wisest teacher and the greatest yogi. Krishna offered to give his vast army to one of them and to become a charioteer and counselor for the other, but he would not touch any weapon nor participate in the battle in any manner.While Duryodhana chose Krishna's vast army, Arjuna preferred to have Krishna as his charioteer.

Krishna counsels Arjuna on the greater idea of dharma, or universal harmony and duty. He begins with the tenet that the soul (Atman) is eternal and immortal.

I am generally good with directions and in Klang Valley and pretty much most of Malaysia, I do not need a GPS. But when I was in Europe, I bought myself a nice Garmin that did marvelously at guiding me to the right direction. Sometimes signals will be lost or certain roads are closed and the automated voice and the GPS will recalculate and lead you to the right way.

Arjuna had Krishna as his GPS, to guide him the right way.

In life we need a clear signal from God so we can discover our position and place in the world. Until we discover our place, our niche, our purpose in life, we will always feel lost even when we are in a familiar place. It is okay to be lost or loose direction every now and then, but we must discover back, recalculate back our purpose.

What is my purpose? I have activated the GPS that God has installed in me and to go through the many circumstances, choices and forks in the road in my life, I have started and will continue to use three crucial resources from God.

Start using our GPS: Our Gifts, our Passions and our Struggles.

We are lavished with a galaxy of gifts. Some are natural talent one is born with, some are spiritual gifts when you commit your live to loving.

We are all experts at something and nobody excels at everything. Be honest with yourself about what you do well and how effectively you use that gift. How often you exercise your gifts often depends on what your passions are.

When we do things we are passionate about, we do things enthusiastically. Enthusiasm and passion come from God within us.

God has given us gifts because he wants us to use them, not for any other purpose. When you pursue the passions He has placed in your heart, He simply loves it. God finds so much joy in your living out your gifts and being who He created you to be. We will feel both fulfilled and sense God's pleasure as well when we live our passions.

Struggles are as important as gifts and passions, it completes our GPS, God positioning system. Because of struggles, problems and difficulties, we depend on God for guidance and love. We learn our limits and are reminded to look for Him when we are stuck.

If never had struggles or problems, we would never depend on God and we will miss out in understanding His love and His power in our lives.

In my journey today, I have written five different gifts that I possess and I plan to ask three close family members and friends to list five gifts they see in me. I am sure it will be a surprise to see similarities and differences.

I have also thought about how passionate I am about my current job and career field and I am making a list of obstacles preventing me from doing what I am more passionate about. I will share with my guardian and God my obstacles and in prayer ask for them to be removed.

I will also share my struggles I have faced in life with someone this week as a means of encouraging and motivating that person.

Today, as I start to use my GPS, I end my blog with words from my favorite children's books author, Dr Seuss.

Today you are You, that is truer than true.
There is no one alive who is Youer than You.
Be who you are and say what you feel
because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.

Take care and be well.