Go the the Main Page
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In its most general sense, discipline refers to systematic instruction given to a disciple. This sense also preserves the origin of the word, which is Latin disciplina, "instruction."
To discipline thus means to instruct a person or animal to follow a particular code of conduct, or to adhere to a certain "order," or to adopt a particular pattern of behaviour. So for example, to discipline a child to wash its hands before meals. Here, 'washing hands before meals' is a particular pattern of behaviour, and the child is being disciplined to adopt that pattern.
Who needs discipline? Everybody does. I need one, too. I need to discipline myself to sleep early so that I can wake up early and be fresh the next day. However, as I still have a baby who wakes up at night for feeding, sleeping early to wake up fresh is still a challenge.
On child discipline. My children need discipline. I know. There are so many books that offer a range of advise on how to discipline kids. James Dobson's are the ones that are very popular, at least in Christian community. To discipline a child, you have to get to know him/her very well. You have to know their personalities and characteristic.s Not only that, you have to know the different stages of children's life to fully understand how they behave and why they behave that way.
A screaming child does not necessarily imply a negative behaviour. Do we straight away spank or scold our child because he screams? I don't think so. We have to find the underlying reasons why he screams. This can be a baby's way of letting his needs known or this can be an expression of frustration. For my son, screaming is his way of letting his stresses out. Once he's in an uncomfortable situation, he screams. He also screams when there's too much around him. He was displaying this behaviour from newborn until he could communicate his feelings well. Now, he does too, sometimes, especially when he's imitating his baby sister. Only then we tell him not to scream. Now he listens and obeys us everytime we tell him not to scream. Tell a baby who still doesn't understand or who still incapable of letting his needs known, and you will end up frustrated.
Discipline is one of the most challenging thing one could do as a parent or guardian. It takes effort, consisteny, respect, and above all, love.
1. Effort: Sometimes, it's so easy to just let the negative behaviour pass. No stress, no explanation needed. However, it does take an effort to do discipline. My son was bitten twice. As parents, of course, we felt that biting was not a joke and must not be taken lightly. So when he did that to his sister at one point, my hubby and I agreed to never allow him to do that again. Ever. So we imposed a classic stand-in-the-corner discipline on him for the first time. He disliked the punishment so much he never did it again.
2. Consistency. This is another challenge. You can teach a child in one day and he would obey... but due to his short-term memory at a young stage, he could easily forget about it and do it again the next day. So we have to remind him time and time again. Consistency is very important. It tells a child you really are serious about it.
3. Respect. We need to respect them as we discipline them. If we scold our child in public, it may hurt his ego, resulting to insecurities and such. I really try not to scold/discipline him in public. Let others think I don't discipline my child. His confidence is more important to me than impressing people or showing others I really discipline him. When he exhibits negative behaviour, I pull him out of the situation, take him to a private place and talk to him. He listens this way. It's good ot do this way. Not only you preserve his integrity, you preserve his self confidence as well.
4. Above all, Love. We can read a lot of books on how to discipline a child with love. To spare the rod, or not, it really depends on the personality of the child. Or depends on our principles and beliefs. I believe in using the rod for my child. But if one uses the rod, one has to be sure it's not out of anger but rod a child with love. Hard to do coz sometimes, we only use the rod when we couldn't take it anymore. That means, when we're already so stressful and angry.
I may have left out a lot more on what it takes to discipline. But I am very willing to learn from others who have tried and succeeded.
I have another book given to me by my brother-in-law and sister-in-law about disciplining a child. It's called Making Children Mind without Losing Yours by Dr. Kevin Leman. I haven't started reading yet. But I had looked thru it. One thing that caught my eyes were these verses, taken from the Bible, Ephesians 6:1-4
Children, obey your parents; this is the right thing to do because God has placed them in authority over you. Honor your father and mother. This is the first of God's Ten Commandments that ends with a promise. And this is the promise: that if you honor your father and mother, yours will be a long life, full of blessings.
And now, a word to you parents. Don't keep on scolding and nagging your children, making them angry and resentful. Rather, bring them up with the loving discipline the Lord Himself approves, with suggestions and Godly advise.
Pray, tell me, who can skip such best advise on raring kids?
Archive for 2007
Go the the Main Page
posted by Jan on relationships
Finally, after years of waiting for Ramesh to find the "love of his life", he finally found her. It was a few months back when a friend introduced both of them thru a blind date. They met at Secret Recipe (my favorite shop for cakes). Sparks flew. Chemistry present. They talked and talked for hours. The rest was history. I'm not gonna tell you the juicy details... not sure whether they want me to share it here (respect privacy, that is).
And so, to make the long story short, they got engaged. At the same time and place where they first met each other. Ramesh managed to get Dewi to wear the same clothes she was wearing the first time they met and also they were at the exact table where they ate the first time. Dewi somehow felt there was some kind of weird thing going on but she never thought it was the day Ramesh would propose to her. Oh so romantic. Reminded me on how romantic my engagement was with Peter 5 years ago. Ramesh bought her a nice diamond ring which cost like $$$!!! My eyes were like popping out in disbelief at how much the ring was.
posted by Jan
|What Your Handwriting Says About You|
You are a fairly energetic person. You know how do pace yourself, and you deal well with stress.
You are somewhat outgoing, but you're not a natural extrovert. You think first before you act. You tend to be independent, rational, and logical.
You are balanced and grounded. You know how to get along well with others.
You need a bit of space in your life, but you're not a recluse. You expect people to give you a small amount of privacy, and you respect their privacy as well.
You are somewhat traditional, but you are also open to change. You listen to your head and your heart.
You are a decent communicator. You eventually get your point across, but sometimes you leave things a bit ambiguous.
posted by Jan
10:48pm, Monday, October 01, 2007
We do things and live our lives according to what God has planned for us. We raise our family not because of other people’s decision. We have kids not because a friend we know have already one. One time, I was telling a friend I was pregnant again. It so happened that one of our couple friends had two kids already. He asked me nonchalantly, “Are you guys competing?” I was baffled, befuddled. Speechless. Didn’t know how to respond. Didn’t know what to say. So I asked him back, is having kids a competition? I couldn’t forget that day when he asked me about competing to have kids.
Having kids is not a competition. It is to our own convenience (or inconvenience). It’s according to our life’s situation, our finances, our principles and beliefs, and most of all, according to what God had planned for us.
Before getting married, Peter and I talked and considered having 4 kids when we get married. Also, we decided to wait for 2 years before having our first. But God had a different plan for us. After we got married, the great desire to have kids set in our hearts. We also realized we were not that young to wait for one year, what more with two. So after two months of marriage, we decided to stop our birth control plan and started making our first baby. I got pregnant straight away!
When Peter told one of his friends, she was surprised. She said, you’re barely a husband and you’re becoming a father already?” Once again, I was befuddled. Why… tell me… do you stop being a husband when you become a father already?
After our fist baby came out, I had a hard time transitioning from not having a baby to having one; from going out with my hubby a lot to staying at home coz I had a baby to think of. So I thought probably one was enough. I tell you, every time I saw pregnant women, I would tell myself or Peter what a hard future they’re going to have! They didn’t know what they’d go through once the baby came out! Can you believe that? But when Schenker (my first one) turned one year old, the desire to have another baby came in again. So Peter and I talked about it, planned when to have our second. We thought two years of age gap would be fine.
There are of course pros and cons of different age gaps. But then again, it is according to one’s situation, financially and availability wise. I didn’t want to give birth to babies and give the responsibility to others to raise them. Of course, we have different priorities. Others have to work to provide finances for the family to thrive.
Too many principles, too many reasons… This I know for sure, that when we raise our family, when we decide how many kids we have and what age gaps they should have, we do it suit our situation. We don’t get pregnant just because our friend or someone we know is pregnant!
Life is not a competition.
posted by Jan
My son has been showing potty readiness this past one week! Hurray! It has been a long time since I wanted to potty train him, but he seemed not ready yet until at least early this week. He told me he wanted to wee-wee in the bathroom. That’s a real good sign that he’s all ready to be trained!
I actually planned to train him last year, when he was turning 2 coz I thought he was old enough to do so. But his pediatrician told me to delay the training coz I was pregnant and gonna give birth that time. She said that if I started training him, when the new baby comes, there’s a risk that we were going to start the process all over again.
I’m glad I listened. Otherwise, I’ll just get frustrated.
So, when actually is the right time to potty train them kids? Our oldies would say that we can start potty training even as young as 6 months!Age is one factor to consider to start potty training. However, age is not enough to consider. According to this source there’s physiological, psychological and physical factors to be considered.
Phsysiological readiness means the child can control his bladder. I noticed that today, when my son asked me to go with him to the bathroom coz he wanna wee-wee, i saw that the nappy was still dry. And the last time I changed his nappy was like more than 2 hours ago already.
This also means that a child must be willing! Willing to sit on the potty - when we bought our son’s potty, and we told him it was going to be his potty and he was going to do his “job” there, he refused to sit on it. Let alone touch it!
Psychological readiness means the child is able to recognize that he’s doing it (wee-wee or void). I think the fact that he asked me he wanted to wee-wee was a sign that he’s ready psychologically. Also, if the child is aware that he’s doing it, then he’s ready. My boy used to not care even if he has done it already. Let mommy smell it and it’s good enough! Now, he complains when he did it already. “Mommy, I wanna change nappy.”
Physical readiness means the child can walk to and out of the bathroom, can sit, and pull his pants up and down. Now, I wonder how mothers can train a child who’s not physically ready yet. I’m sure they had a very tough time, they had to carry and do everything for the child. Maybe, if I was willing to do all this for my son when he was not walking yet, probably I would have one difficult time, with my bulging tummy and all that! Kudos to mothers who sacrificially do all these for their kids!
Things to remember when we start training our kids to potty is never to push them to do it. The more we push, the more they resist, and all the more it will be so frustrating for mothers. Also, when they show readiness and tell you they wanna do it, acknowledge it and give him praises. This way, it will encourage him more to tell us when he’s ready to go. Also, we need ot be really consistent and patient in the process.
Last but not the least, when it comes to potty, we not only check whether our child is ready or not, we also check ourselves whether we are ready or not because if we’re not ready, we’ll just contribute to the stress in the process. Both child and the mother (or whoever is training the child), must be ready. This way, we will be assured of smooth and successful result!
I hope I’ll be patient and consistent enough to go through this with him. It will be a lot of help if he is potty trained already, at least financially wise… no need to add the nappy cost in the budget!
posted by Jan
I am a stay at home mom (by choice) and I am proud of it. :) I used to work back when I was single, and loved it. But I told myself, once I get married, I wanna stay at home. There are many reasons why:
- i can personally take care of my kids. it's great to be able to follow (with my own two eyes) their developments and milestones and not just make an assumption that they can do this and that. also, nowadays, it's difficult to leave your kids in the care of other people. they will be influenced according to how that nanny lives her lifestyle. also, if there are other kids around, the kids can get naughty faster. i see a lot of kids they haven't even reached the age of two yet but they are already on the terrible-two age. that's very sad. moms who work at this stage can just close their eyes in that kind of situation coz they have no other choice but to send their kids to other people's care.
- i can personally take care of my hubby. :)
- never mind about the finances... as long as we have enough to live day by day... it's alright. We never go hungry anyway, unless we choose not to eat coz we wanna diet. and besides, God is taking care of our daily needs... and our wants from time to time. :P
- i wanna be the best mother to my kids and the best wife to my hubby. if i work, then my attention will be divided being at work and being with my family. that's what we call "family comes first."
- less stress. you only serve the husband and kids.
- it's not only an old thing to stay at home. i know a lot of friends now, once they give birth, they quit their work just to take care of the baby. i admire them for that. it really takes sacrifice to do that. sacrifice their own career, sacrifice their own ambition just for the kids. now that's what i call real "mothers."
- it has been proved: breastfmilk is best for babies.. and the longer you breasfeed, the better. if i work out of the house, probably the longest time I could breastfeed would be six months... knowing it's hard to maintain breastmilk supply when you only pump at day time and breastfeed at night time. breastfeeding is also a sacrifice. the clothes you wear are limited. cannot just wear anything you like. it must be comfortable to be able to breastfeed anytime, anywhere. this is just one of the cons being a SAHM.
- when you stay at home, there's some kind of rewarding feeling... especially when you see your kids grow up.
- the first 3 years is the formative years. a lot of interaction is needed to be able to cultivate young kids so that they can be the best that they can be. i am happy that i am the one who interacts with them daily...
well, SAHM also needs a break. coz too much spending time at home could very well effect the person. that's why i am going back to my family in the Philippines!!! Wooo hooo! I can finally take a rest there, knowing that even if i leave my kids to my family, i know that they are well taken care of. :)
so these are merely my opinion now. i might wanna go back to work once the kids are grown up already. when they do, it's another story. :)
i know it's not easy to be one, but congratulations to all SAHM
posted by Jan
He's a tease, a charmer
Very friendly, can make one feel comfortable easily
People are drawn to him
Who's this guy?
I met him eye to eye
He took us to dinner
No chemistry, nothing special
I was intrigued, Who was this guy?
I went back home
Sent him a message
Thanked him for everything
Sure, you're welcome, he said.
Who was this guy, I wanted to know
He used to tease, and yet aloof
I teased him back
He opened up.
We became friends
Shared goals, shared jokes
Until we found out,
We share the same birthdate!
That triggered "it"
Common things discovered
The more we shared, the more we felt
From friendship, love blossomed.
We became one
Now we're four.
Who is this guy?
Shankar, my love, no other.
posted by Jan
My 2 year 9 month old son just asked me: "Mommy, what happened to you?" I said why? What happened to me? "Your leg broke?" I looked at my legs. They looked the same. I asked him: Show me where? And he pointed to my ankle bone... and the callous there.
Sigh... my son has finally noticed it. I wonder... if my son has... other people would have noticed as well. Shame. I wonder how to get rid of it.
posted by Jan
“Do not desire crosses, unless you have borne well those laid on you; it is an abuse to long after martyrdom while unable to bear an insult patiently.”
—Fran篩s de Sales
Oh well... what a good reminder since i've been impatient lately with a direct insult. And an obvious attack.
posted by Jan
Peter is going to Phuket next month, for 4 days. Then 5 days after that, he'll go to Brunei, Sarawak, then to Kalimantan (for 10 days). All of which will be his trip alone... we're not going with him.
Hmmm... I thought (out loud), maybe I go back to the Philippines, spend time there since I'm missing home so much already. Peter said yes straight away. Shock!!??!!?? Hehehe. That was unexpected.
Anyways, I'm thinking.. to go or not to go? We're actually planning to visit Philippines next year for Christmas. That way, I'll have time to save and time for Samantha to grow some more. She will be 2 years old then. That means she'll enjoy the trip more. And not to mention ME... since Samantha is already big enough, we can go jalan jalan (go around) more. I can spend time with my friends. Every time I go back to the Philippines, my friend Grace would organize a reunion party for us.
Last time I went, Schenker boy was only 5 months so I couldn't join them much. And some had regretted it in fact, esp the singles ones (still didn't understand how it was to be a mom).
Anyways... now... I'm thinking should I... or shouldn't I go?
posted by Jan
I just discovered that there's one Filipino living in our neighbourhood. She's been here for 1+ years already, been working two houses away from our house. I remember one time when I was hanging my laundry at the back of our house, I saw her hanging some clothes too. I smiled at her, she smiled back. Today, we saw each other again... and smiled at each other again, and continued with our work: hanging clothes. Then suddenly, she said, "Filipina ka?" which means, "Are you Filpino?" She said she heard somebody speaking Bisaya in our house a few times. So I told her I have Filipino friends that come and stay with us.
Then she asked me whether I like bagoong (Filipino version of shrimp paste) which I said yes straight away... although I don't feel like eating it now. :)
Glad to know there's at least one Pinay (that I know) who lives nearby. :)
posted by Jan
|The Keys to Your Heart|
In love, you feel the most alive when your partner is patient and never willing to give up on you.
You'd like to your lover to think you are optimistic and happy.
You would be forced to break up with someone who was emotional, moody, and difficult to please.
Your ideal relationship is open. Both of you can talk about everything... no secrets.
Your risk of cheating is zero. You care about society and morality. You would never break a commitment.
You think of marriage as something precious. You'll treasure marriage and treat it as sacred.
In this moment, you think of love as commitment. Love only works when both people are totally devoted.
posted by Jan
I got an encouragement today from the children's missions coordinator in the church that we conducted the kids' seminar. It's nice to know that we, as a family, can be a good testimony to others.
Here's her email:
> Hi Bro Peter & Sis Janet,
>>> On behalf of the Mission Committee & Children Ministry, a big thank you
> for giving your time in ministering to our Sonshine K.I.D.S children,
> oikoses and teachers too during our Missions Fest. I pray that these
> children will continue to make God as the treasure of their lives and will
> always turn to Him, move with Him, worship Him and seek Him in prayer.
> Whatever they had learned will not be in vain but will be remembered and
> put into practice.
>> Do you know that my teachers/leaders were so encouraged to see a young
> couple like you giving your life for Mission? I believe it had made a
> great impact into their lives. Pray that these teachers/leaders will not
> only be encouraged but the fire of God's Missions heart will spark into
> they hearts and they be filled with excitement to pray, give and go for
> Missions whether locally or abroad.
>> May His anointing, abundance blessings and protection be upon you and
> family as you touch and spread the fire of God's heart for Missions into
> the lives of people.
>> God bless.
>> Anita Lee
> Mission Coordinator
> Children Ministry
God is good. Glory to Him!
posted by Jan
He was lying down on the bed... his hands and his feet were tied up to the bed. His body trembled. He was in a delirious state... He uttered his supposed to be "last few words." Then he (his soul) started soaring, and saw his body strapped down on the bed, with all the tubes connected to the different parts of his body.
Matthew is still suffering from cancer. He's still undergoing chemotherapy. Please join me in prayer for Him. That during this time of treatment, God will continue to strengthen him. He mentioned once that everytime he goes for chemo it is so painful and what makes it worse is he has to be under chemo for 24 hours! For 24 hours he'd be in pain. Please let's lift him up to the Lord. Also, let's pray that God will use this life-changing experience to touch other people's lives... that whoever hears his testimony will repent in his carnal ways and turn to God. Life is short. Heaven is eternal.
posted by Jan
what a joker day.
we went to church to sunday morning. i had a very good morning coz i slept early the night before. once again, appreciated the morning breeze. really relaxing and invigorating.
went inside the cradle roll class room, smiled and talked to mommies and their babies. the guitar man was strumming his guitar, practising for the morning songs. suddenly, i heared the song he was playing... quite familair, i thought. then it hit me... he was playing the "anak" song by freddie aguilar! hahahha! he must be trying to guess which nationality i was... so when he played that music, i looked at him and gave him the special smile. he smiled back. but i couldn't really look at him... coz tears wanna roll down my eyes already. (i didn't realize i missed home this much). so i looked in another direction, pretending not to care. then he stopped strumming. he probably thought i wasn't that interested when he played that one.
anyways, after the service, i took peter out for brunch (i got a love gift and everytime i do, i make sure i celebrate with my family -thanksgiving to God for His provision) in Summit. We went to Swiss Gourmet. Heard from the Besters they had a good food. When we were about to enter the cafe, i heard the same tune again. the song was in english version and this time, my eyes got really red again. of course, i didn't want peter to notice it.. so i just went inside and sat on the chair quietly. the waitress came and asked us what we wanna order. while she was talking i noticed the accent sounded familiar! and guess what... she's a Filipino. Hahaha! I had a little chitchat with her, asking how long she has been here... blah blah... and she left.
the next thing i heard, the song was playing again.. and this time, in tagalog version already!
hmmmm... what's it all about ah? how come i have to hear this same music over and over again on the same day?
anyways... probably i am already very excited because we plan to go back to the Philippines next year for a visit...
ok lah.. need to write a story. good night!
posted by Jan
We had a very interesting weekend. Attended a wedding on Saturday, and a memorial service tonight, Sunday.
Both event brought tears to my eyes. Both events made me reflect on my own life. In one event, 2 persons had to leave their own families to be together as one . In another event, one has left his own family to be toegether with his loved One. Two different events... and yet both were very emotional. Sad, and yet happy. Leaving other people behind, and yet meeting the one (The One) who's very important.
Weddings always make me very emotional. Every time I see a bride walking down the aisle, I can't help but tears will just roll down from my eyes. I dunno why... but for me, this is the most special part in weddings (not that the broom-can-kiss-his-bride part is not important). The part in which the father takes the bride to her groom, turning her over to him... and the broom in turn takes the bride and the vows begin. I think in all weddings that I have gone to... whenever the bride started walking the aisle... I get very teary eyed. Probably because I am a one romantic person and I think this is the most romantic part in a relationship... that finally, both people in love begin a life journey together as one. And every thing changes. You're no longer twain but one.
Good thing I didn't get emotional on my own wedding. Hehehe. Well, I couldn't see myself walking down the aisle that's why... and that's a good thing. Hahaha. But mind you, every time I see my wedding video... that part where I was walking down the aisle with y papa... although I have seen the video for like 50,000 times, I would still get very emotional.
And so, the latest one I saw was Ben's and Kat's wedding (in Holiday Villa, Subang Jaya). Ben is Ptr Donald's oldest son. He was so dashingly handsome... and during the reception, he surprised his bride by singing "I Will Be Here". Once again I got teary eyed. Sigghhhh. Also, his sister Beth sang... her voice was so lovely... and awesome. I said this to her after she sang... and I'm gonna say it here again. Her singing made my hair rose. Hehehe. Really true. She's a fantastic singer. The husband, Andrew, played the guitar. Lovely couple.
Twas Samantha's first time to attend a wedding (will write it in her online journal later).
Then tonight, we attended a memorial service.
It was very emotional (that's understandable and I think I don't have to explain why). Dr. Koh died in his old age... and I could say... he had truly left a legacy. He was one (of the two) founders of FGA (Full Gospel Assembly), the church where we go to. They started the fellowship in his house on 1979. Little did he know that... that small fellowship would grow into a huge church (of 8,000+ members) today. I was so blessed by his humility in his service to the Lord. Although I really dunno him that much... but I could see him in church every Sunday.
There were things said during his eoulogy to describe what and who he was. All I could remember were: he had a gift of hospitaly, he's got an un-assuming (this is a one hard work to achieve - to be un assuming) and unpretentious personality, and have a great humility. A role model to everybody...
Hmmmm.. that helped me to thinking... I wonder what will people say in my eulogy. Hahaha...
In my previous blog, I wrote something about me being perfected by His grace and love in His time and all I could say that now, I'm far from being perfect. Way too far. Soooo imperfect. But of course, I know that I am still in the mold... and He's got a lot of work to do still.
I remember once in our weekly devotions (led by Peter) and our topic was... " what would people say about us on our funeral". such tricky and very reflective question. Others answered and told everybody about their qualities... and when my turn came... I couldn't say anything about me... and I remember saying... maybe people would say something like this: "truly... God's grace was on her." Oh well...
posted by Jan
We're all like clouds, that move across the sky... we change forms right right before our very own eyes... jmc
I was reminded of this song when I was cloud gazing on the way to Damai Laut for our family holiday.
I have indeed changed. I've been to a few places. My father was in the army so we had to move places from time to time. A few years here... a few years there.
When I graduated from college, I thought I could be stable... staying where I was, working... making my own family in a stable place.
But God took me some where else... and when I thought I was home, He took me again to some other place.
I met people along the way... some had impacted my life... some had left marks... some had wounded me... got healed... but there are scars that are still obvious til now.
Life's a constant change... we take one step forward and unknowingly, that simple step has taken us to a million miles. .. taken us to places...That simple step has changed us, moulded us, prodded us forward even more.
Good thing He was there. And He's still here... to guide me... to speak to me when I think nobody's around to talk to... encourages me when I think everything seems hopeless and I am feeling really helpless... walks with me when i think i am alone trodding my path... guides me... and constantly molding me into something that can be used... that can be a vessel. and if He thinks I'm not fit for a certain mold, He'd break me... again and again... to form a new one... more beautiful... more fit. I am changing... to the sole purpose of His glory... changing.. and yet the same. Same plans... same purposes... same meaning... same janet... and yet... inwardly... outwardly... He keeps molding me... sometimes it hursts especially when he softens the rough spots, sometimes it feels wonderful when the smooth surface shines...
Thank God... that through this journey of constant change.. He's there... always the same... never changing... never leaving... never stopped loving.
I am in His hands... and I pray I'll always be... until one day... that special day when He comes again... and bring me to His place... and will say in my presence... that I don't need to change... I don't need any more breaking...coz in His grace and in His love, He has prefected me. At last!
posted by Jan on family travels
This is the continuation of my story about our holiday in Damai Laut, at Swiss Garden Hotel.
When we woke up the next day (which was very late), both of us smelled so creamy... hahaha! Actually we smelled like babies. And we were so hesitant to shower coz we wanted to relish our body scent. But we showered anyway.
Then we went to the pool.
read the rest of the entry here:
posted by Jan on family travels
Damai Laut is a 3-hour drive from KL. The drive was very smooth.
Schenker and Samantha were asleep almost all of the time… Thank God we have 2 car seats now. I can at least rest and take photos in the car while traveling.
(The happy and comfy travellers)
read the rest of the story here:
posted by Jan
I subscribed to this devotions for women... So I get a daily dose of encouragement...and it really helps me through the day.
"For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11
God's plan is the expression of His love. Never in our lives will God ever express His plan except as an expression of His perfect love. God always has our best interests at heart. He'll take any situation a person is going through, even if it is a terrible one, and will use it for a good, overall purpose in one's life.
It's good to be reminded once again about His purposes and plans. There are certain times that we forget about it... like when we're at our busiest, lowest, highest or in whatever situation that keeps us away from remembering His purposes in our lives.
Hmmm... got me to thinking... what really is His purposes for me? What are His plans? Sometimes, when I take a look at myself... busy with the kids, with all the housework in mind... and not forgetting that my husband would be coming home soon and i haven't cooked dinner yet... i get to thinking... Do I exist just because of them kids? Do I exist just to do housework and just be a wife?... a tag along during grocery shopping time? When all these come to my mind... and when there's no reassurance, I feel really down... and feel like I'm running around like a headless chicken... no direction, no goal.
But God, in His awesome faithfulness, reminds me... over and over again... like today...that... He has a purpose for me... plans... to give me life and a hope... His purpose that I would mother my kids. I have two great kids... imagine God giving me the chance to raise two future great people for the Lord! Imagine being a wife to a "great man" in the Lord!!! ... Imagine keeping a house where "great people" of the Lord come for rest, comfort and prayer!
Suddenly LIFE comes back to me... with hope, with meaning, with a purpose... to be a blessing to my kids, to my husband, friends, and nations! Isn't that awesome?
Thank you God for getting me excited again... thank you God for bringing me back to you. Thank you for today's encouragement. Looking forward to hearing from you tomorrow, Lord. Good night!
posted by Jan on family travels
read the rest of the entry here:
posted by Jan
Peter led the devotions today. He talked about "giants" in our lives... especially us, workers.
Giant is an allegory of something that distracts us from being effective in serving God. He gave the example of King David in 2 Samuel 21:15-17
(2Sa 21:15) And again the Philistines warred with Israel. And David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines. And David became faint
(2Sa 21:16) And Ishbi-benob, who was of the sons of the giant, the weight of whose spear was three hundred shekels of bronze in weight. And he being girded with a new sword thought to kill David.
(2Sa 21:17) But Abishai the son of Zeruiah came to his aid, and struck the Philistine, and killed him. Then the men of David swore to him, saying, You shall not go out to battle with us any more, so that you do not put out the light of Israel.
Observations were made:
Two things were different …..
1.David was an older man, without the robust strength of his youth.(In the midst of the fighting, David became exhausted. -Gone were the days when he was so strong and robust!)
2. A Philistine giant, Ishbi-Benob was out to get David.(It would seem like Ishbi-Benob had been waiting for such a moment – when David was the most vulnerable, in order to make his move).
Known as on of the heroes among David’s men. A fearless and willing volunteer, fiercely loyal to David. Abishai comes to David’s aid... smites the giant and kills him. They won the battle!
Howevere, David’s valiant men gather around him and make him swear that he will never go into battle again.
Why? Is it for David's own safety?
Hmmmm...Something more important is at stake: “ In order that the lamp of God might not go out “... meaning...David, as king, was like a lamp that reflected the character and purposes of God to Israel and the surrounding peoples.
To extinguish this witness would be an assault on God’s redemptive purposes for the nations.
We are lamps to team members, family, ministry colleagues, UPGs,etc
As with David, the forces of darkness seek to prey on our vulnerabilities in order to diminish the intensity of our lights to the UPGs, family, friends, etc .
Watching Over Our Hearts
(Pro 4:23) Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it.
Pro 4:23 - Heart - Thy thoughts, will, and affections. For - From thence proceed all the actions, as of the natural, so of the spiritual life, which lead to eternal life.
We need to look for opportunities to reassess personal strengths and weaknesses.
Like David and his men, we must rise to the challenge and search deep within our hearts and take a closer look at our own giants and vulnerabilities.
What are our vulnerabilities?
2 Keys for personal growth & ministry effectiveness :
1. Self Reflection
“A bitter truth is better than a sweet lie”
Looking within is not easy, but it is far better than ignorance & denial.
Take time to get quiet, and reflect. Listen & wait upon the Lord. Speak to a friend.
Speak to a counselor.
As I reflect today's devotions... I came to ponder upon this:
It does hurt sometimes when friends correct/admonish us... but according to the scripture: Open rebuke is better than secret love.
When we allow people (leaders, friends, counselors, pastors, etc.) to speak to our lives... only then can we experience a total change of heart and of mind and true love will manifest in it's greatest form... to love and serve (effectively) HIM.
Only when we have a total change of heart can we minister effectively to our "neighbours".
Only when we're refreshed can we refresh others.
Only when we're willing to submit can we serve others.
Only when we recognize our strength and weaknesses can we have a total change of attitude towards our walk in the Lord.
God has indeed spoken to my heart.
posted by Jan
My Reflections on LOTR
My friend asked me last week what my favorite movie was... and I told her it's the LOTR (The Lord of the Rings) Trilogy. That movie has really impacted me... I have watched it 50,000 times and I could watch it 50,000 times again. Hehehe. Actually, when she asked me about it, I remembered I wrote my review and reflections on the story. I opened my mail box (coz I sent it to friends for encouragement like ages ago) and found a copy. I started reading... and once again, it has encouraged me. I decided to post it here, hoping that as you read... you'd be encouraged as well. Skip my grammatical errors though... or better yet, contact me for corrections. Thanks!
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy – Janet’s Review & Reflection
I had the chance of seeing these 3 movies, the part 1 of which was the first movie Peter and I watched two years ago (the second part was the first movie we saw together after we got engaged and the third part was the first movie we saw after we got married). After seeing the first part, I was urged to read the books as I was excited to see how the ring was going to be destroyed. I got a friend of mine from the US to send me the books and to my surprise, I got four of ‘em!!! The other book, entitled The Hobbits, is, I think the introduction of the trilogy, of how Bilbo got the ring & of how Smeagol, who later became Gollum took the ring forcefully from his cousin Deagol. He wanted the ring so much that he killed his cousin.
I love the story. True enough the story revolves around “good wins over evil.” And yet it’s not as simple as that… There’s something deeper, more meaningful. In fact, you could draw out a million themes from the story, e.g. the ring as a symbol of sin; Frodo and Sam - great friendship; team work, etc. I wanna write more on “ team work “ as one of the themes for the Lord of the Rings. The story itself teaches how a team can achieve its mission through working together in unity in spite of the differences.
However, for those of you who haven’t read the books, or even watched the movies, I would like to share with you how the story goes, otherwise, you may skip this part to go straight to my reflection.
Somewhere, some time, extremely long ago the evil prince Sauron forged a golden ring. The ring enabled its bearer to rule, and made him evil, if by chance he was not evil from the beginning. One Human being, Isildür, cut Sauron´s hand in a battle and took his ring. Isildür, who originally was a noble king, of course became intoxicated by his desire for power – so he lost the ring, his gold and his life.
In the course of numerous vicissitudes the ring fell into the hands of a troglodyte, Gollum, who became so possessed by his possession that he withered into a tiny monster, sitting in his cave, patting his ring all day long. One day, several thousand years later, he lost his ring. By accident it fell into the tiny hands of Bilbo the hobbit, a peaceful homunculus with hairy feet and dirty nails. Frodo, Bilbo´s even smaller nephew, of all impossible personalities, finally got the sacred mission of bringing the ring in security. It had became necessary to do so, because by then (i.e. about the end of the 14th Century A.D?) the Sauronic ring had begun to activate itself, attracting the attention of the evil prince (still going strong on his dim mountain) who had begun to mobilize his black, mounted ring-ghosts to track it in order to carry it back to its maker. If they had succeeded in doing so the ring would have enabled him eternally to rule over Middle Earth, the homeland of elves, hobbits, humans, and of all decent creatures.
Frodo is given due briefing by Gandalf, the wizard. Around the tiny hobbit a brotherhood of eight is formed: a couple of exiled human kings, a fierce dwarf, an elf archer and a couple of fellow hobbits. They take off on a long quest in order to throw the ring back into the Crack of Doom from which it was originally forged, because that is the only way to destroy its evil power for good.
However, Sauron´s new proselyte, Sarumon the wizard by now is breeding a new race of evil, dark warriors – the orchs – out of the infernal swamp. With their assistance and by means of Balrog, a giant monster, some huge trolls, and innumerable ugly monsters he tries to frustrate the quest of our small peace corps. The story goes on and on…
After seeing the three movies, I was awed by how each character was able to reach the mission (which I wasn’t able to see while reading the books as I was interpreting the story literally)! I would very much like to relate the Lord of the Rings trilogy to “m work.”
First, let’s get to Gandalf, the wizard. He goes here and there, trying to make friends with every creature. He goes to the Shire to visit his Hobbit friend, Bilbo Baggins, and realizes later that the ring was in his possession and later on turned over to Bilbo’s nephew, Frodo. He believes that Frodo would be the one who would go to Mordor to destroy its power. He then goes to Saruman to tell him about the ring but to his dismay Saruman has joined forces with Sauron, the enemy. The whole movie, it was Gandalf who goes to all the leaders of the different groups of people just to awaken them to join forces against the forthcoming war.
Gandalf represents a “m mobilizer”. It’s like he’s going from church to church just to see the churches joining together to finish the “remaining task”, to reach the Unreached!
Second, Frodo and Sam represent the “frontliners”. In the Bible, as Jesus sent them two by two, this, too, happened in the story. Although at first, Merry and Pippin were with Frodo and Sam, somewhere along the way, they had to let go (unwillingly) of the two and join others to fight in the war. There is so much to learn from this. Frodo and Sam represent Paul and Barnabas, Frodo being Paul and Sam being Barnabas. Frodo was quite a weak person (but bold and courageous) and Sam was there to encourage him. The two had their own role and they didn’t forget that. Along the way, towards the “crack of doom”, nearing the fire to which Frodo is supposed to destroy the ring… Frodo became so weak due to the heavy burden. Sam, always remembering his role as a companion to Frodo didn’t take the ring himself. Instead, he carried Frodo to the gates of fire so Frodo could throw away the ring by himself. I remember Sam when he said: “I can’t carry the ring, Frodo, but I can carry you.”
That, I think was a neat representation of how partners can work together as a team. Each knew their own role, not overstepping each other, not envying of the roles that was given to the other. And yet, both are going towards one goal!
There was one time when Gollum tried to talk Frodo against Sam. Frodo, as weak, tired, and burdened as he was, believed Gollum. He then told Sam to go back home.
This too, can happen to us. When we get so weak, so burdened, so burnt out, instead of trusting and believing our partners, we tend to listen to the lies of the enemy. We tend to get discouraged and become distrustful. But the story doesn’t end here coz Frodo realizes later that it is not Sam, but Gollum who is trying to break them apart, it is Gollum who is trying to deceive them so they would not complete their mission.
Third, here comes Aragorn (the last heir of the line of the kings), Legolas (the elf) and Gimli (the dwarf). These three come from three different races. Legolas and Gimli know so well that Aragorn is the king. They both submit to him. They both listen to his instructions. Legolas and Gimli have different personalities and sometimes they clash. And yet, when it comes to work, they are united, forgetting their differences. The goal is to fight the enemy and not each other!
Wonderful! In a team, there are always different personalities because everyone comes from different backgrounds, different family values, different cultures, etc. Yet, to achieve the team’s goal, one has to forget the differences and focus on the work and not on the other person’s weaknesses and differences. One conversation between Legolas and Gimli hit me the most (this was when they went to Mordor, to the black gate to take away Sauron’s eye from Frodo and Sam). It goes something like this;
Gimli the dwarf: I wouldn’t want to die side by side with an Elf.
Legolas the elf: Then let’s die side by side as friends.
Fourth - the strategy of taking the eye(attention) of Sauron from Frodo and Sam. The team went to the black gate courageously, hoping to stray Sauron’s eyes from looking towards Frodo and Sam. Although they didn’t know where Frodo and Sam were & they didn’t have a report from the two and yet they believed that the two were just there, somewhere, going towards their mission, to destroy the ring. They were too few, being outnumbered but they had courage to go there and call the enemy’s attention away from the two. They had courage. They fought. They hoped. This is like supporters back home… constantly hoping… praying… and interceding for the workers!
Yes indeed. The story is about good winning over evil. And yet in our work, we have to remember that to be able to win the race, it takes unity... submission… acceptance… it takes trust… it takes believing that we are there for a reason, no matter how different we are from the rest. It takes courage amid hopelessness. It takes devotion and commitment that we will never give up until we see hope… until we see light… until we see victory… until we see our efforts are not being wasted… until we see that the remaining task is finished…. Until we see Him glorified by all tongues, all tribes, all nations… Until we see Him Eye to eye!!!
I pray that this reflection of mine would encourage my co-workers to go on with the work that is entrusted to us. God does not see our weaknesses alone, nor does He see our strength alone. He sees beyond that. He sees our hearts, our willingness to obey, and above all, our commitment. Let's continue to run the race!
posted by Jan
Last night was aweful.
Peter and I were invited for dinner by friends last night. they wanted to take us for Chinese food. But since my tummy and chinese food don't go along well together, Peter suggested Black Canyon - nice Thai food they have. So we went there. Ordered some nice Thai food and black mocha something.
Peter sent us home after dinner... he had a meeting to attend with. The wife came with me since the husband was also going to attend the meeting. The wife is Filipino by the way, married to Malaysian Chinese. The wife speaks English to me even when we're alone together... which I find very awkward. I understand if we're with our husbands. It would be rude to speak in our own language and other people who don't understand it are listening... but to think that we're speaking English with each other while alone... sounded very awkward to me. Last time, I tried speaking to her in Cebuano/Tagalog coz she's from Davao... but she kept talking to me in English. So I started talking to her in English too. But I haven't gotten used to it yet. It really felt so awkward.
Anyways, while driving home, Schenker fell asleep in the car. So we had to carry him in. He didn't wake up until one hour later. But the moment he woke up, he started looking for his daddy. I want to see daddy, mommy. I told him we don't have to car to go to the office coz daddy is using the car... and besides, even if we have a car, mommy won't be able to drive. But he kept insisting on seeing his daddy... and cried and screamed and cried and screamed. because of this, samantha got the spirit too... and started crying... and screaming. It has stressed me so much, knowing that I have a guest in the house. I tried keeping my cool... but the stress was there.
I started feeling sick in my tummy. I didn't whether it's because of the food or the stress in hearing the two kids cry at the same time. This situation was really hard. I think this was the hardest so far in having two kids. There's no consolation for Schenker and Samantha cried coz her brother was crying. I cannot carry two babies. The boy was asking me to carry him and everytime I put samantha down, she would stop crying and start screaming! Awful night indeed.
I went upstairs... carried two of them while sitting on the bed... the sick feeling was getting intensed so i started praying for God's grace and strength. Comfort and peace for our boy... I almost cried. But after praying, Samantha calmed down a bit. And when I put her back in her cot, she doidn't cry... and she went to sleep straight away. Thank God!
I carried the boy downstairs and just when I couldn't hold the sick feeling anymore... Peter arrived home!
I went to the bathroom and threw up everything I ate. It felt really awful. Anyways... it always does me good every time I throw up when I feel sick.
In times like this... when I turn to God.. He doesn't fail me. He's always there to answer my prayer and comfort me... giving me strength. I admit... I fail so many times... dunno what to do... feeling very weak and helpless... but everytime i turn to Him... He's always by my side. I can only depend and trust in Him who gives me strength and wisdom... and loves me unconditionally.
Awful night indeed but in times like this... this is when I experience His grace and mercy... and love.
posted by Jan
Auntie Karen led the team devotions today at the office. The topic was on encouraging others. It has reminded me once again that there is importance in encouraging others. I used to do it.... sent emails once in a while just to encourage friends. But I guess due to the busyness in life... i got no chance to do it continuously.
According to her... there are two kinds of encouragement. One is affirming others of what they do - expressing gratitude, acknowledging them, and communicating our appreciation for their efforts (whether succesful or not). The other one is affirming others of who they are.
Ways to encourage others include: spoken word, written word, and actions.
Also there are five ground rules for being a Good Encourager:
1. Base your encouraging on obeying God, not on your feelings.
2. Be sensitive to cultural differences.
3. Avoid flattery and too many compliments.
4. Begin with your family.
5. Find out what encourages the other person.
few things in life enables us to flourish as much as encouragement. It empowers us, motivates us, strengthens us, cheers us on, builds us up, and gives us courage. All these results come from such a small investment of time and energy.
Note: Karen attended the "Sharpening Your Interpersonal Skills" seminar and this was one of the topics.
I really hope to be able to encourage friends again...
posted by Jan
Samantha was dedicated to God today! Woke up at 5:00am to prepare for church coz we're attending the first service for Babies' Dedication Program. Left the house at 6:45 am. I realized I haven't been out of the house so early for a long long time. It was actually nice to see the dawn again. I said dawn coz here in Malaysia, 6am is like 4am in the Philippines. And everyting starts/opens at 9am here so waking up so early is quite unusual unless you're a morning person... which I'm not. And am glad that Peter is not, too. We're both nocturnals... and our kids are getting there too. Anyways... like what I've said we woke up quite early. I loved the morning breeze... It felt very relaxing... and cooling...The church wasn't so packed compared to the 2nd serive time. It was full alright but not to the point of cramping or something like that.
Peter was amazed to see a couple of couple friends. One couple had 4 kids and the youngest was Samantha's age. The other couple had one (her age, too). And the girl was sooo pretty. It was nice to see Peter's friends.
Before the service started, we went to our cradle roll class room and took some photos and listen to the instructions for the last time. When we went inside the church, there were seats reserved just for us. There were 9 babies who were going to be dedicated.
The dedication was very simple... we said our oaths and prayer of dedication to God. It was sweet and simple.
We didn'd finish the service coz Peter had to go somewhere else for a speaking engagement. (This was the reason why we didn't join the dedication at the 2nd service. We usually go to the 2nd service which starts at 11.00am but have to go early also coz Samantha's cradle roll class starts at 10:30am.) Peter sent us back home and headed to another church.
While waiting for him... I washed the cushion/couch covers. I've been planning to do so for a long time now and I only got to do it today.
When Peter came home, I had a quick nap. Appreciated the rest. I haven't been taking a good nap since Samantha came.
I told Peter that I pity our kids. He asked why. Coz I said Baby Dedication here is so simple... no parties... no godparents.. no gifts! Hahahha. So he took the family out for a good dinner. Went to TGI Friday. Hmm. I just loved their barbecue beef with Jack Daniel sauce. The good thing in TGIF is when you order a meal, you get a free meal for kids too. So our Schenker Boy had chicken tenders and chips - for free. AFter our dinner, went to jalan jalan some more. Saw a few clothes a liked... but no money to buy. this month, we're a bit tight.
Anyways... back to our girl...I thank God that we have dedicated her at 6 months. Last time with Schenker boy, we missed the mid-year dedication program because we weren't able to attend the briefing - we were out of town then. So had to wait for another half a year for him to be dedicated and he was almost one year old already.
Being a parent is really no joke... have to really be careful... especially on the formative years. Coz this is the time where you set a foundation... THE foundation. Must really ask God's wisdom to be able to do our part in being parents. I said this coz when we were reading our oaths... we promised to really be responsible... to train up the child in the way he/she should go... and lots more... cannot play play one. (i sound like chinese already - he he). SO help me God!
posted by Jan
I met a Chinese lady in church today. Met her when Peter and I decided to have something to eat in the hospitality room coz we didn't have breakfast and we're all feeling hungry. Peter talked to her first. After eating, we went to Samantha's cradle roll class (Sunday School for infants aged 0-18 months). After her class... Peter and Schenker Boy went straight to the boy's Toddler's Sunday School class.
Every Sunday, while waiting for Peter and Schenker to finish the sunday school, i'd sit in the library and watch the Sunday Service from there (on tv). On my way to the library, I met the same Chinese lady and she started talking to me... no... actually, started asking me questions... like... what do we do.. where do we live. And when I told her where we leave... she said... ahhh USJ 18 ah? the one with big houses? ... I proudly said... hmm yeah... then she asked me this: how can you you live in such a big house? Ahhh.. eeerrrr.... I got speechless for awhile... and started asking myself... yeah... how could I live in such a big house? I thought for awhile... squezzing my mind for an answer and finally I remembered why. And I had to explain why we had to live in a big house. I said we used to live in a small apartment but we had so many people coming over and staying with us that our apartment became too small for us. And we prayed for a big house and God has answered our prayer.
Then she gave me lots of advises and comments on what and what-not-to-do in taking care of kids. And I just kept quiet and nodded my head coz I thought she was basing on her own experience. After listening for a while, I asked her how many kids she had. She said none! And I thought she was giving me all sorts of advises because she was a mom herself. Sigh... some people just love giving advises even when it's not asked... All I can say is... pls don't do that lah... especially when you haven't experienced it hands-on.. or if you're not an expert. Of course, I still love hearing advises from people about raising up kids and stuff like that... but if one is not a mom herself (or an expert)... I would say... who are you to give that piece. You wouldn't know how it is like until you become one! Duh!
One more thing, she asked me my house address... and I happily gave her. Uh-oh... have I made a mistake? She said she was going to visit me and asked me what time is the best time to come. I said in the afternoon, like 4pm.. she could come. And she asked me why not in the morning. Coz we're too busy in the mornings? She started getting into my nerves... and to think that it was a Sunday... and I was on my way to listening to the sermon.
Hmmm... I wonder whether she really meant to come and see me. She scared me lah. I felt that she was too direct (and too rude?) with all her questions. Perhaps she's just being friendly? One wouldn't know.
Oh yeah. later, when I asked Peter who she was... he said she's the wife of one of the leaders in the church. :(>
posted by Jan
I feel very accomplished today. I cleaned up our garage... swept those dried leaves that has been left in front of the gate. Gosh.. took me a long time to clean it up. Actually, when my mother-in-law came to visit us last week, she cleaned up the garage and my little garden. I didn't know what happened but the leaves were left in front of the gate. And I kept telling myself I had to clean it up... and I'd do it later. And ended up forgetting about it. So today, when I was in a cleaning up mood, I took the broom and swept them clean. I'm so glad to see the front of my house tidy again.
Kudos to me!
posted by Jan on Me
So... this is about me, my kids, my husband... and what has been happening in my life. My journey as a mother, wife, friend, etc.