Who Do You Serve?

Everywhere you go, there is aways a crowd pf people serving different interests.

Some live to serve their family. They spend so much effort and time improving their living standard. They emphasize the welfare and benefits of their family. To them, family comes first; all others can wait.

Some live to serve their career needs and interests. They strive and struggle to perfect their skills and enrich their knowledge and understanding of their core business. Successful career means so much to them. To them, work comes first; all others can wait.

Some live to serve their hobbies and interests. They are so engrossed and involved in adding their collections and study them. They live to enjoy their leisure. To them, leisure means everything; all others can wait.

Some live to serve their God. They delve deep into the understanding of the holy book and practices. They live a holy life and constantly eager to share their beliefs. To them, God is everything; all others can wait.

Some live to serve themselves. Their family, their work, their hobbies and interests, and their God mean nothing to them when they interfere with their life. To them, their needs and wants come first; all others can wait.

Some realize their mistakes and seek to change courses. Those workaholics tend to be more homely. Those home makers start to work to make ends meet. Those who spend so much time enjoying themselves want to have a family and a steady income. And those who are worldly start to seek God.

Ultimately, the whole argument boils down to this: Who do we serve, God or man?

We are the masters of our choice. But a wrong move can have great implications on our lives.

Who Do You Serve?

Resting Under The Dense and Tall Tree

It was scorching hot, so resting under the shade of a tree is especially pleasing and satisfying. There I use to stay for a long while before I continue my work and my journey.

Under the shade of a dense and tall tree I use to sit down, enjoying the gentle and cool breeze, hearing the chirping of the birds and the humming insects, watching the sweet smiling flowers and the beautiful landscape, and not forgetting to take a long and deep breath. It is so refreshing as the sweat slowly cools and dries out.

Under the shade of a dense and tall tree I use to read books, newspapers and magazines. Sometimes I write articles and essays as my thought is carry away by the sound of the rushing stream and the sight of the various cloud formations in the clear blue sky.

Under the shade of a dense and tall tree I once used to play guitar and sang along with friends. We looked at one another with love and tender loving care. It was just fantastic and I could still remember our secret hiding place and our precious moments.

Now under the shade of a dense and tall tree I start to chew the green and tender grass slowly and allow its juice to go down the throat. It is bitter sweet and just suit me as I keep the tree company.

Oh dense and tall trees, how you have quietly blessed so many...

Mineral Water

We were in the middle of a feast when somebody discovered a bottle of mineral water couldn't be opened. He went ahead with a few more attempts until his face turned red hot. Everyone on the some table was smiling and laughing away.

Feeling slightly ashamed, the man passed the bottle to a good friend who looked more macho. You could see the strong and powerful muscle, and his confident smile. He tried with good posture, trying to twist open the bottle cover with as little strength as possible. Everyone paid extra attentions to him, holding their breath. Few tables nearby started to turn around showing much interest. Few minutes later, the man too was sweating away and breathing heavily. He finally gave up.

Everyone was laughing heartily and jeering at one another. The bottle was then passed around to nearby tables but apparently no one could open it.

Feeling rather ashamed at the crazy bottle, we decided to put it aside and concentrated on the programs at hand. Few people who were still not satisfied with their performances continued to try. Nonetheless, brutal strength was not the answer.

Then we discussed the various techniques and angles to open it, when out of no way a non-teaching staff came forward to receive his prize. He was a groundsman tending the beautiful gardens of the school. In one breath he opened the bottle cover with a broad smile; not even a sweat!

Everyone was amazed at his skill and started to clap their hands. It must be a wonderful moment for our friend, who just smiled away humbly and sheepishly.

As I think back the whole episode over and again, I realize that his ability is not just a coincidence, but is indeed a talent that must have taken him much time and effort to perfect.

God has bestowed us with various great talents. But when our talents are not developed and utilized, they slowly disappeared... Imagine.... we cannot even opened the cover of a mineral water bottle.

Much will be lost if we continue to take things for granted and live as we like, without any serious consideration of what we can do with our talents to contribute towards the well being of the world.

He Asks When He Doesn't Know

A week ago, my son went for his matriculation course. This was the first time he left home for study. We were worry for him, as he seldom assisted in doing house chores. Nevertheless, he seemed confident to stand on his own using his skills. So we just smiled and bid him goodbye.

The first night, he slept with some friend in a hotel. Nothing much happened except complaining that the trip was tiring.

The next day started his college registration. He arrived early and managed to secure a good room. Then he went around, started making friends and getting comfortable with the surroundings. He only phoned us in the evening. And so began his first problem, "Mom, how do I wash my clothes?" My wife laughed and all of us bursted into laughter, imagining how my bright son who scored straight A1 in his public examination was not able to wash his own clothes. My wife was patient enough to teach him slowly, laughing quietly.

The next few days were okay. He slowly adapting himself to the college life.

Every night he called, complaining about the hot weather.

On the fifth night, he complained to the mother that his body felt very itchy and more pimples popping up on his face. We believed the orientation programs were too packed that he didn't give himself a decent bath. So we advised him to take proper bath and bought himself some suitable lotion and facial cream.

Then today, he again gave us a surprised call, "Mom, how to use the washing machine?" Everyone was again laughing with tears.

But we are proud of our son, he asks when he doesn't know.

Chasing My Dreams

I don't chase after butterflies and bugs. I chase after my dreams.

To me, life is filled with dreams. And I am to turn my dreams into realities. I don't believe only in dreaming; to me, dreams are realities in making.

I am determined to put my heart into my dreams, plan them out properly and carefully, carry them out diligently and monitoring them all the time. It sounds simple but I know much time and effort is needed in realizing my dreams.

I was born into a family of a vegetable seller. My daily routine was to make sure that my potential clients loved me and wanted to buy vegetables from my stall. I had to put on a cheerful face with sweet smiles all the time. And I had to provide helpful advices and services to my clients in order to coerce them to buy more from my stall.

I had little time to study my book and to do my exercises. But nothing was to stop me from achieving my dream to further my study in higher institution. I was not outstanding in my study, but I was determined to work hard. I did not have the luxury of a cozy home, or a tuition center, or the quiet and conducive study place. But I have a full heart to turn all my free times into study opportunities.

I loved to walk in the rain, soaking my body all over. I dared the rainstorm and the thunderstorm with determination. Sometimes I did cry in silence, pitying myself for my misfortune. But nothing could bog me down. God knew I was ready to face challenges to fulfill my dreams.

Yeah, a good academic qualification will make me the right start; it will give me good standing in the society. A good education can also help to broaden my horizon to see life in a wider, deeper, and fuller perspective.

From then on, I was determined to chasing after my dreams.

Now, as I look back, I am pleased with all my dreams in reality. But I am not going to stop here...

More is to come, and I am set to realize them all...

I Just Love To Win

When I was younger, I loved to think fast and speak fast. I was ever ready with my best answers even before questions were being asked. I was trained from small to anticipate different probabilities in every situation.

When you are in an ever changing business world, winning is not just a game, it is the battle for survival. You have to outwit your customers and you have to outplay your competitors.

If you cannot beat your competitors, join them for the time being and learn to play their games. But the moment you don't see any more strong challenges from them, you must show no mercy and beat them to a point of no return.

And so you build your empire by pushing many people around. You will have very few true friends as that is the price you pay. Worse nightmares happen when your "true" friends turn against you and left you to rot.

I see no future for a life like that. You may gain the whole world but still remain poor in many important areas of your life.

There are those who live a solitary life with no family members and friends to rely upon.

There are those who have left behind many bad feelings and memories that they are no longer welcome in the communities.

And the worst thing is when the inclination to win has become a thorn in the flesh; you just refuse to lose to others in any and every situation.

And so lately I learn to be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry (James 1:19). It is not an easy task as I fail often, but I will persevere... at least trying to save my own world before it is too late.

Forgive Us For Worrying Too Much For You

Some of us do not want our children to be influenced by the world.

From very early in their lives, we have reminded them often our list of dos and don'ts.

We punish them when they don't do what we want them to do. And we also punish them when they do what they are not supposed to do.

We think we can control and contain our children, until all hell breaks lose. Our children retaliate in anger against us and refuse to speak honestly with us anymore or decide to leave home often.

Separation from the world is never a good solution to bringing up our children...

But our heart is often very heavy each time our children leave us...

When they are with their friends, we are worried about their relationships.

When they study far away, we are worried about their livelihood.

When they are driving a car or riding a motorbike, we are worried about their safety.

We talk to them through the phone, sometimes all too often, making them tired of us.

We give advices and reminders, sometimes all too often, making them really bored.

We follow them and watch them closely from afar. Oh no, we are not trusting our children. What if they discover our present?


Children, forgive us for worrying too much about you. You are too precious to us...

We do want to know your whereabout...
We do have good advices for you that we have learned through painful experiences...
We do watch from afar...
And we do pray for you often.

Children, you have our blessings always, though our heart refuses to let go...

Forgive us for worrying too much for you