Sunday, July 17, 2011

Journey of an 'ex-bracesed' kid

I recalled the first day I went for an appointment with the dentist regarding fixing a pair of braces for me. It was in June 2003. I went back home disappointed because the dentist said my jaw was too small to have braces and I had to wait for another year.

I had bad teeth. Whenever I looked at myself in the mirror or in pictures, my teeth would always stand out somehow. One of my maxillary central incisors protruded out and my two canine teeth looked dracula-ish. Whenever I tried to lick my teeth with my tongue, I couldn't reach that particular tooth which was way too front. I looked at my brother's teeth and honestly, jealousy gripped me as he could smile with so much confidence, and he looked really nice in pictures. I too gave my best smile in pics, but in the end I felt my smiles weren't so appealing. Due to the disorderly arrangement of my teeth, food often got stuck in between them. I had so much trouble dealing with them.

So in August 2004, I managed to get myself registered in the government hospital to fix my braces. Only then I knew that I wouldn't get them straight away as there was a long list of other poor people like me who had bad teeth and wanted to get braces too. And so I waited and endured this crooked teeth for another 4.5 years. After SPM, I finally put on my braces.

This journey of wearing braces have been bittersweet. I miss those moments of showing off my coloured bands, enduring the come-and-go and come-and-go-again pains, brushing teeth almost after every meal, 'toothpicking' food stuck in teeth (esp green leafy veges, hate it) and many more. Well, as much as how I miss them, I would not want to go through it all over again. I prefer them to remain as memories treasured in my heart.

I'm thankful to God for giving me the opportunity to experience ugly teeth. Only then, I got to experience what it was like wearing metals for 2.5 years. And only then it reinforced in me the interest to do dentistry. It was all planned so beautifully. Like a piece of Sonatina, the ups and downs of life helped me perceive life a different way. I'm now all ready to India!

(Nevertheless, beauty is skin deep. I still hold on to the belief that physical appearance isn't as important as our inner beauty)

QUIZ: WHO HAS THE BEST SMILE???Yup, you guessed it right!

Yea, you guessed it right again! LOL

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Apostles' Creed

I've heard of the Apostles' Creed, but my church doesn't practice reciting it. Because of that, I didn't take the trouble to memorise the whole creed, but just the first few lines.

Until I attended a Methodist church service last year, I finally read it out aloud at the end of the service.

I believe in God the Father Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth;
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord:
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead, and buried;
the third day he rose from the dead;
he ascended into heaven,
and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.

After the service, I was rather confused, or you can say troubled at a statement in the creed. I wonder whether some of you had the same doubt as me.

Thanks to dad and the book "Hope Again", I finally understood what it meant.

My deepest concern was the statement "I believe in the holy catholic church." I knew Methodist believers are not Roman Catholics, so how could they say they believe in the holy catholic church?

Later I realized that "catholic" (small alphabet c) meant "universal", so what they were really saying was "I believe in the universal church." So no contradiction.

Lastly, I hope our belief goes beyond any creed...FAITH. Without faith, it's still just a creed. It is a statement of our faith!

The question is, do I believe the truth of that statement? Do you believe it? If yes, there is hope for you beyond the creeds. And that hope is a heavenly home reserved for you and I. :)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

She's a blessed woman indeed

It's mum's birthday today.

Thanks for everything, not because I don't know what to say, but because it's everything!

You are blessed like Mary for these 3 reasons:

1) For having 3 obedient, not to mention good-looking sons.

2) For having the opportunity to eat your favourite Vietnamese cuisine.

3) For getting the chance to indulge in all time favourite Chocolate Banana cake.

And the list goes on and on...

The conclusion is, Happy 52nd Birthday Mum! We love you!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

A song for everyone

When some of you read this, maybe you'll go 'Oh goodness this holy guy preaching again!'.

If I'm afraid being labeled names like 'Pious Preacher' or 'Holy Boy'(a sarcastic one), you wouldn't get to read this post of mine.

I guess most of you know I am very particular with the things I do, the songs I hear and the words I utter. But please remember, I'm not imposing a rule for you to follow, nor I mean to offend anybody here. It also doesn't mean you don't befriend me if you like to sing Lady Gaga's "Judas" or even you're homosexual/bisexual. I may not agree with your stands but doesn't mean we can't be friends. For God loves each and everyone of us, who am I to judge you?

Sometimes when I'm angry, though I would say some not-so-nice words, but I always try not to curse or speak foul language. Because I know my tongue cannot be used to praise God and at the same time, curse and swear. I always remember in Campus Revo, Esther shared the verse “In your anger do not sin” Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. (Ephesians 4:26-27)

So here's a song which I love, not much about the tune of the song, but more on the message it is trying to deliver. May this song remind us to live our lives not for ourselves, but live it in such a way that Christ's death was worth the cost.

Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking