Wednesday, December 30, 2009

It's Our Cats' Home


I was watching our cat lying at the entrance of the sliding doors.

He looked sick and tired.

He is our fat black cat with sharp claws, very fierce and always ready to fight against intruders.

He has been wounded many times and there are many evidences of scars.

But he is determined to fight and fight hard.

The urge to fight is always in his blood.....

But now he is lying down quietly and peacefully, stretching and relaxing on a foot mat.

He must have felt really safe and secure there, though his watchful eyes suggest that he will be ready to prowl the moment an enemy approaches.

And so we leave him alone, knowing that he will be healthy and strong again after taking some rest and some nice food and drink, and given some patting and tender loving care.

*******

We have altogether six beautiful cats living with us now.

They don't shit anywhere in the house except the washroom.

Occasionally, they do vomit on the carpet when they are sick....

We started off with a crippled kitty when we first moved into this new home; she was left behind by her mother.

Many generations of cats has since come through her and she was no longer crippled.

Lately she had disappeared and no longer to be found.

We suspected that she had died of old age....

********

We have given away many cats to well caring families.

But we continue to feed stray cats which go about hungry in the housing estate.

Ever since we keep cats, we no longer have leftover food problems.

In fact, sometimes we even buy some small fish and cook some rice specially for them, when we have decided to eat out.

We love our cats... and our dog.

But we don't keep dog anymore... after some men have decided to poison our dog during early July this year... and he died in great pain.

But we still have our home opened for our cats.

It's our cats' home.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Tough Gets Going


I remembered the days when I was a young boy helping my family selling vegetables in the marketplace.

People during those days were simple, straightforward and a lot less quarrelsome.

Sincerity, honesty, integrity, diligence, thrift, humility and harmony meant a great deal during those early years of my life.

We woke up early at 3 a.m, cleaned up, had a hot drink, dared the cold wind and sometimes rain or thunderstorm, and moved fast through the rubber garden to the marketplace.

We walked along the narrow trail; it was a luxury to own a bicycle or a motorbike.

We usually arrived at the marketplace by 3.30 a.m.

Then the daily routine of cutting, peeling and rinsing the vegetables, making sure that they looked really clean, presentable and fresh.

Then we arranged them orderly and nicely on the stall so that transactions could be done more efficiently and effectively.

Business started early and we had to be ready before 5 a.m. when some customers would arrive. During festivals, we had to start business as early as 4 a.m.

Then I started to clean up, had a bath, and put on school uniform.... I had to get ready for school.

Some of us started to entertain our clients... and we took turn to have our breakfast.

We were taught from small the importance of eye contacts, sweet talks, good service, honesty, patience, constant smile etc. to draw the attention of our customers. .... We had ample practices, self-evaluations, and discussions since small.

By 10 minutes to 7 a.m., I had to rush for school.

I loved my studies and I worked hard.

By 1.00 in the afternoon, I was back to the marketplace.

I had my bath and ate my lunch.

Then I did my homework and my revisions while serving my customers.

By 5.00 in the evening, I got ready to go home.....

During weekends, I brought vegetables in bundles and sold them in the nearby villages.

We were taught to earn our own pocket money rather than asking from our parents....

*******

Looking back, I have no regrets and I don't blame fate.

I don't have to compare with others.

I take things as they come, and I am always ready for them.

Like the saying goes, "When the going gets tough, the tough gets going".

I smile heartily and take a sip of my Nescafe.

It is a nice, bright and shiny day out there..........

Friday, December 18, 2009

We Love Our Home


It is an intermediate double storey terrace house unit situated in a lovely and quiet spot.

It is a comfortable house with 4 big rooms for a family of five.

They have lived here for 8 years....

As you come near, you will see some pots of beautiful flower and an awning in front of the house.

It is a rather nice and cool house all day long, though rather cold on rainy days and nights....

******

It was once filled with three lively children running up and down the staircase, and slamming the doors everyday.

They seldom stopped talking, singing, playing, laughing, eating.... you name them...

They had happy and satisfying childhood.... and they often had wonderful times.

There would always be gatherings and parties during festivals and celebrations, when their relatives and friends came... It's really happy hours and they enjoyed them all!

*******

They all have their own room, and the youngest one occupies the master room.

They are entitled to their secrets; their parents have given them their privacy.

They don't come and meddle with their rooms except to clean and to tidy them....

They are also each given a laptop or a desktop.

And the D-Link Wireless N Router DIR-615 offers decent Wireless-N performance to every room.

*******

The oldest is a daughter, now doing computer science in a local university.

The second is a son, now doing International Baccalaureate program.

The youngest is a daughter, just completed her lower secondary education and anxiously waiting for her result.

*******

The house is rather quiet when the children are not around, now that two of them are studying far from home.

Everyday, the father and the mother worry for them.

Though the hand phone is a great help, they always miss the presence of the two older children....

And the house is rather quiet when only the 3 of them are around....

*******

Then comes the year end holidays....

Everyone is back home again.

They are happy, talking, smiling, and laughing together once again.

They treasure every moment, sharing every thought and idea, every emotion and feeling, and every activity and accomplishment....

It is also a moment of solace and comfort for all of them.

And they enjoy every bit of it.

*******

But they know that this is not for long....

Life is a journey of adventures and they have to live with it....

Their two older children will soon leave them, explore the world and seek their own life....

******

It is a big and spacious house for the five of them.

It is always a nice and comfortable house.

But more importantly, it is a home with love, care, and affection.

And they just love their home.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Clearing Away The Dead Tree Branches


Driving along the road in a housing estate, I saw some workers busy pruning and clearing the dead branches off some trees.

I slowed down and examined properly.

The tall and dense trees were obstructing and interfering with the power and telephone lines and poles.

It was a tedious and dangerous task.

They did it slowly, quietly and carefully.

It was normal routine for them, nevertheless it must not be taken for granted.

Many had lost their lives and limbs due to electric shock.

I love plants, flowers, bushes and trees.

They add beauty to the surroundings.

But I believe the local council must tend them carefully and regularly.

The idea of leaving them tall and dense, and disturbing the power and telecommunication lines is beyond my comprehension.

And imagine watching frequently the heavy and long vehicles moving freely in the housing estate....

And imagine driving along the uneven and narrow road with its many potholes and loose gravel....

It is really disheartening and frustrating at times, especially when you know that some of the officers and workers of the local council are staying in the same housing estate.

When something untoward happened, the local residents start to scream and shout, then the local council meets, planning and administering some possible action plans... after much delay and red tape...

But no monitoring, supervision, enforcement or any other precaution measures were done before that.

Once, I was surprised to see a broken power line lying on a road when I was on my way home. It was still alive. No untoward accident happened that day but the heavy and long vehicle that had knocked the power cable was no way to be found. Praise the LORD it was not raining..........

The workers had finally cleared all the dead branches off the trees on my returning journey.

They were sitting under the shades, relaxing and smiling to themselves.

These are the unknown and the unseen heroes who make life better for everyone.

But who care? It was just another normal day....Isn't it?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Be Flexible And Calm


Nature reminds us to live in harmony and be at peace with one another.

The leaves on the trees move when a slight breeze blows.They rustle with fury as the wind becomes stronger. Then they stay still again.......

The trees are flexible; they bend in the breeze. They move elegantly and smoothly to every wind of change. But they will stand firm and still again, given the opportunities.......

Then the time comes for the leaves to get old; they die and fall off.......

But the new leaves will emerge from the buds, bursting forth upon the trees again.......

Then the new leaves will brave the rain and the wind again.

And so are all the twigs, boughs, and branches.

And they do so gracefully and cheerfully.......

*******

Thinking back, I wonder why humans are so fussy and picky...

...so emotional and upset...

...so worrisome and vulnerable...

...so rude, pushy, and aggressive...

Time for us to take things as they come...

...and accept things if they don't...

... and always keep smiling.

If only I were more flexible and calm no matter what happens... Sigh....

Friday, November 27, 2009

Finding A Better Rhythm In Life


I read about some tips on living a longer and healthier life. I wonder whether you would agree.

Basically there are three things that we must do slowly...

We must eat slowly and chew well, so that our body will receive the necessary nutrients for everyday activities. We must relax and enjoy our food peacefully, with no mental and emotional worry.

We must be slow to get angry. We must learn not to lose our cool easily. Short-tempered people always do foolish things. We must learn to forgive others and seek to calm down ourselves as soon as we can.

We must always be at ease and let our heart beats slowly. Is that how and why the giant tortoise has a much longer life span?

And there are four things that we must do fast....

We must walk fast to increase our body metabolism and increase the body energy level. We must walk fast to decrease our body fat percentage and the risk of diseases.

We must react fast to various stimuli and senses. Our flexibility and adaptation to changes will determine our survival and ensure future prosperity.

We must have smooth and fast bowel movement – We must not have constipation and digestion problems.

We must be fast asleep. And our sleep must be well and deep.

Interesting article...make sense to me.

What do you think?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

People Respect Us Because We Respect Them


People respect us because we are dedicated and committed to what we say and do everyday.

They respect us because of our talents, knowledge, vision and principle.

They respect us because of our determination, tenacity, resilience and assertiveness.

They respect us for the superior quality of our services and products.

*******

People also respect us because of what we have gone through and what we have ended up with.

They respect us for what we have dealt with in our past.

They respect us for our strong mind, stout heart, and iron will.

*******

People also respect us for our manners, kindness and conduct.

They admire our honesty, fairness and integrity.

They welcome us because we always try to avoid confrontation, and always seek to address issues in a positive and constructive way.

*******

People also respect us for our differences.

They respect us for our different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, and different dreams.

They respect us for our ability to make everything and everyone look so good.

*******

But most of all, People respect us because we respect them.

We can only earn our respect from others by respecting them.

Do you agree with me?

Good day.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Rambling Thoughts On Love


God said "Love your neighbor like yourself".

This is a commandment of God and we must keep it.

But too many of us treat this commandment as negative.

And we keep the commandment to the very minimum....

God said "Love your enemy".

This is a commandment of God and we can have no other option.

But many of us see this commandment as too demanding....no way...

And we wouldn't do anything, not even a smile or a greeting.

But over years, as we delve into God's Word, we find many wonderful truths in these commandments.

The commandment to love our neighbor and enemy makes us realized just how careless and negligent we live our life.

Many of us don't even keep a record of our daily activities.

Many of us still have a lot of bad habits.

Many of us have poor attitude.

And this command to love others means we must learn to love ourselves.

We can never love others if we don't love ourselves.

Look at the way we patronize every conversation.

Look at how possessive we play games.

Look at our commanding attitudes and actions.

Time to change and correct ourselves.

Yeah, love others as ourselves.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

These People Don't Always Bite You



Once I used to get very mad at those who habitually spoke behind people's back.

I just didn't like their petty and trash talk about others.

Those insinuating and offensive words about others often caused me upset and made me angry.

Those bombastic and ironic words could often penetrate the deepest heart, torment the thoughtful mind, and dampen the desire and enthusiasm of others to thrive and develop.

And I always wondered just what type of man they are, wasting so much time and energy meddling into the affairs of others.

And they were always so arrogant and self-righteous.

... and so quick to marginalize and ostracize others.

... and so rude and bad mouthed.

It was really horrible....horrible...

And they continue to haunt me today, bringing me daydreams and nightmares.

Nevertheless.......

... I will try my very best to avoid them

... I will try my best to escape if I am caught in a backbiting session.

But sometimes I am stuck... and have to hear them talking bad about relatives, friends, and colleagues.......

Oh..... those foul mouths.

Oh..... I really have a lot of bad remarks about them.

But lately, my friend came up with a good idea.....

They love to talk bad about us......

... because we are beautiful.

... because we are more clever.

... because we are more happy.

... because we have more friends.

... because we are ........and have ........

So the next time if others are talking behind your back....

Believe me.... they maybe praising you.

But don't come near them...

... because they maybe feel shy.

Smile and have a positive outlook always.

These people don't always bite you...

Saturday, October 31, 2009

When The Floor Collapsed


I was enjoying myself sipping a mug of hot tea.

It was 4.30 in the afternoon.

It was still drizzling.

The rain was very heavy for the past 2 hours.

The thunders were loud and the lightnings flashed incessantly.

The workers opposite my house had finished their works.

Apparently the floors were sinking and cracking.

I was told that this was a swampy area before.

Could it be a water bogging area? I was not sure.

Could it be a construction fault? I was not sure either.

It had been raining every afternoon for almost a week already.

I was sorry and worried for my neighbor who had to bear the misfortune.

It would be very costly to repair the whole thing.

It could be quite a strain on his family though husband and wife were working.

Many neighbors were also feeling terrible about the collapsed floor.

Could it adversely affect the nearby houses?

Everyone examined the floor with raised eyebrows.

With the present economic crisis and the high cost of living, news of the collapsed floor was rather unwelcoming.

But looking at the terrible natural disasters in various parts of the world... we had to consider ourselves fortunate.

....... Hopefully everything would be okay.... Sighs....

Monday, October 26, 2009

Rebellious Students


A fellow teacher related to me his agony in marking students' test papers.

He seemed very depressed. The exam papers had given him much headache and heartache.

I had known him for many years.

He was a very hardworking and inspiring teacher.

He was a high achiever, producing excellent result every year.

He was very experienced, and could always pinpoint the students' mistakes and correct them in time.

But this year he had a hard time with a particular class of students.

The didn't listen to him most of the time.

Some of them even escaped his class.

Some of them loved to make fun about his teaching and guidance.

Many of them didn't treasure his effort, desire, and persistence in helping them.

Then came the outcome of the exam.

He saw the same errors committed all over again by most of the students in the class.

He was brought to tears.

His heart was rent.

He was sighing deeply.

And he had a hard time relating his grievances.

It was not easy to behold the same mistakes over and again.

No one should commit the same mistakes twice.

I sympathized with him.

But I pitied those students more... for they didn't know they had a very good teacher.

Monday, October 19, 2009

An Unseen Story


He was carrying his sick daughter on his back.

He was walking along the dark and stony road.

It was middle of the night.

The wind was very cold and the rain was imminent.

There wasn't any vehicle around.

He was wearing a short and didn't put on any shirt.

They must be shivering cold.

He pressed on...

He must have been worn out...

But he must rush to the closest village clinic....

It was 10km from his home.....

There was no time to wait.....

His daughter was having a very high fever.....

Tears flew naturally from his eyes.....

But he gritted his teeth and pushed on.....

It was his youngest daughter.....

And she meant so much to him.....

He almost fell down and cried.....

.....But no, he must continue on.....

*******

Sad stories like this have always happened in quiet places....

Not many realized it.....

They just happened.....

They just died and gone.....

And this is always the price of development...

It seldom reaches the country home...

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Real Man


I have always aspired to be a real man.

From small, I was told that a real man is a real leader who knows just what to do.

Sometimes he delegates the tasks at hand to others according to their abilities. Sometimes he just quietly does everything himself.

Everyone respects him and many look up to him for advices and assistances.

To me, a real man is a real hero....

As I grew up, I have discovered that it is not that simple – A real man who knows what to do must teach others how to do.

A real man must be very meticulous and careful to impart knowledge and skills to others.

He must be very helpful and kind to guide and teach others every living skill he has learned and know.

And he must be very patience and must try to explain in length essential skills to those who are badly in need of them.

To me, a real man is a good teacher and not just a hero.

Then I discovered that a real man is compassionate but always bring everything under control.

He is emotionally strong, stable and reliable.

He will make sure that everything is in place and nothing goes wrong.

And he will minister to the needs of others first and make sure that they are okay.

He may break down and cry once in a while; he is still a human being. But he will recover soon enough.

He may join with the crowd, laugh and joke freely, and enjoy the moment of fun and joy. But he will getting very serious when there is a situation.

To me, a real man is compassionate, teachable and always dependable.

...............

It takes a life time to learn to be a real man.

It takes many toils and labors.

It takes many considerations before we are mature.

As I ponder, I discover.... and discover....

A real man is really a man who wants to be real... Eager to please the Almighty God and to love his fellow beings.

And so I believe that everyone of us can be a real man if we want to.

....Yeah, a real man.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Crying Silently Without Tears


It must be very heartbreaking to hold lifeless bodies in our arms. But that are what the surviving victims of the recent tsunamis do to their family, relatives, and friends. They shriek and scream and cry....

They are all gone....

They are all gone....

It must be very heartbreaking to behold the home blown to pieces right in front of our eyes, despite the efforts to secure the roof and strengthen its foundation. But that are what the surviving victims of the recent typhoons do. They sink to their knees and fall... They mourn and wail and cry....

No more roof for shelter....

No more roof for shelter....

It must be very heartbreaking not to be able to behold our loved ones who are buried alive during the recent earthquakes. The tall buildings have collapsed suddenly and they are all trapped. We can still hear them scream and cry through the phone...But how are we to rescue them with our bare hands.... We scream and mourn and cry....

All is gone....

All is gone....

We cry and cry....

We scream and scream....

We have all lost our voice...

Now, we are crying silently without tears...everywhere...every time...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Human Being Don't Bark


In the midst of a dog fight, some dogs will join in while others will stay at the side, wagging their tails. Then there will be multi dogs barks and multi dogs bites. The large and ferocious dogs win most of the time. But sometimes it is the small dogs that stay united and that can withstand the pains that ultimately triumph.

When dogs fight, most people will stand by the side, talking, smiling, and laughing. The dog owners may show some concerns, but few will react by pouring buckets of cold water to disperse them.

In the midst of human quarrels and fights, some of us may join in and take side. Some will just stand at the side. Sometimes the sharp mouths and those who can shout and scream win the race. Sometimes it is those who remain calm and silent.

When people quarrel and fight, some of us will just stand by the side, watching and talking. The family members may react by pulling them away, and bringing them elsewhere.

Human being just don't simply bark at one another; we reason with one another and we reason well.

But what if some decide to bark at others? Then let them bark. We don't have to bark them. After all we are not dogs that like to bark. Just stay calm and continue to do our works.

What if they use abusive and intimidating language? Then let them wallow in their anger and hurt themselves. We don't have to get angry because others are angry.

What if they are inclined to harm us? Just excuse ourselves and walk away.

We don't have to bark back or get angry at an angry dog that cannot stops barking.

We human being reason and we reason well. We don't bark at one another.

Happy reasoning.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I Thought I Love You


I was always confused about the words "love" and "like". I thought I loved somebody when actually I was obsessed with her. Because of that, I had many wasted years and many waiting dreams.

Once I thought I loved a girl because of her beautiful long hair, her quiet and gentle spirit, and her beautiful face and smile, only to discover that she was not for me and I was not ready for her.

She had her many dreams and visions, and I had mine too. But we didn't have common understandings, goals and values.

We eventually parted ways, not because we didn't like one another (we actually yearned for one another) but because we discovered that our future was not tied together; we would not be happy together forever.

It hurt so much to be separated, especially after we thought we were deeply in love.

It took me so long to discover that what I had for her was infatuation and lust. It was not real love.

It took me so long to discover that I liked her so much that I thought I was deeply in love with her.

It took me so long to realize that love was not so much an obsession and a possession. It was the ability to share, to love and to cherish, and to put someone in the very first place of our life.

It was her who had suggested the separation. And she was wiser and smarter than me... It took me 20 years to discover that love was not what we like, but what we could share with one another for life. It was love for life.... and not only love at first sight.

Thank to her, I finally found my true love... and we are happy together.

And I prayed that she had found hers too... I hadn't seen her after that day.

Sorry dear... I thought I love you...

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

When I Don't Know What To Do


What to do when I don't know what to do?

.......When I don't know what to do, I try to keep myself busy.

I will just smile or laugh, take a relaxing shower, and stretch out to enjoy the day.

I will do some house works and start to move around.

I will listen to music, play some instruments or computer games, read books and comics, or solve some math problems.

I will eat and drink and play and sleep.

I will go for a walk to calm down and get my thoughts together.

Yeah, I will keep on doing what I know how to do......

But I will continue to gather information, and do it anyway.

To me, when I don't know what to do, the best thing to do is just to sit down and start to do.

.......When I don't know what to do, I will seek helps from my family, friends and relatives.

I will run to them for reassurance and support.

I will consult them for guidance and inspiration.

Then I understand the problems better and have many possible and plausible answers.

And I have many useful advices and suggestions to know what to do.

And I am ready to do what to do.

.......When I don't know what to do, I will desire to reach God.

I will pray to God and ask for His wisdom to direct my life.

I will meditate and reflect on God's Word.

I will sing praises and thanksgiving to God.

I will attend church worship and services.

I will seek to please God, and do His bidding.

.......When I don't know what to do, I will not run and hide.

I will not grumble, and go on rebelling.

I will not end up blaming anyone.

Instead, I will keep myself busy.

I will learn to relax.

I will continue to do what I can do.

Then I will start doing what I don't know how to do.

And I will seek for helps....

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Going Up An Escalator



I was watching a family as they went up an escalator in a shopping mall.

They didn't look like people from the city.

The children were talking to one another, pointing at the things they saw.

They looked very excited and happy.

The mother was following behind, walking with style.

There was no sign of the father, probably parking the car.

The children went up first.

Then the mother.

Then I saw an old woman walking unsteadily with difficulty, far behind.

She was most probably in her late 60s or early 70s.

The children waved at their grandmother from above, giggling and laughing.

The daughter didn't even turn her head.

The old woman waved back at her grandchildren.

Then she stopped at the escalator, hesitated to go up as it was a moving staircase.

She had difficulty to take the first step.

She looked at her family but no one seemed to turned back to help her.

Her daughter and her grandchildren had already reached the floor above.

She trembled and was scared.

She tried to take her first step.

Her face was pale.

And she was shaking her head.

The daughter pointed at her mother and grumbled, shouting at her.

A lot of people were watching. They had become the center of attraction.

Then her daughter came down angrily, using the down escalator.

She scolded her mother harshly.

Then she dragged her mother's hand up the escalator.

Her mother almost fell.

Some people were shaking their heads and talking softly to their family or friends.

Then everything was back to normal.

No one seemed to remember what had happened.

I was watching at the staircase not far from the up escalator.

The daughter could have walk up the staircase with her mother.

And I looked around.

Not many were using the staircase.

It was left dirty and filled with rubbish.

This was not my first time seeing the younger generation ill-treated their parents.

I shook my head. I just couldn't understand why.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Always Hungry For Food


Babies are always hungry for milk.

We then introduce them to solid food (cereal)in later months.

Children are growing fast and need lots of calories. They are always hungry and eats whatever is sent their way.

And so are we adults. Some of us always seem to be hungry.

Every time we go out with friends, there must be food involved.

Every time after a hard day's work, we must go for a heavy meal.

And some of us just cannot stop eating, before, during, and after every activity.

Now, this is funny. Some of us are still hungry even after a big meal. Some of us are still hungry after eating 2 triple cheeseburgers, large fries, chicken salad, large soda, ... Some of us are still hungry after two or three or four helpings.

Those of us who are overweight always claim that we cannot lose body fat because we are always hungry. This may not be true. It can always be our lack of willpower to control eating.

And it is really difficult to stop thinking about food when we are on a diet.

Are we overeating because we are always hungry? Has our appetite increased, causing excessive hunger?

There may be a medical explanation as to why we are always hungry.

What is hunger? It is the bodies search for minerals. If we eat high mineral food, we become full and satisfied a lot easier because our cells have what they need to work. We are then able to have high energy levels and are not too stuffed and lethargic to get on with our day.

Doctors explain that fruits, vegetables and grains burn off in 2 hours or less, but meat will sustain for longer periods of time.

If meal time is like trying to fill a bottomless pit, we may need to look at what we are fueling your body with.

Overeating is the main cause of obesity.

Oh, how I wish that I am not that hungry....

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Stolen Purse


It was one of that late mornings when everyone was busy doing their own works.

One of my school colleagues was organizing a motivational talk for one of the examination classes.

She was one of school counselors.

And she was diligent and dedicated to her works.

A speaker had been invited from other school.

It had been her routine to leave her purse in the beg together with many other things.

It had also been her routine to take out her purse from the beg in front of the students

And we all knew that students were observant.

They might have discussed among themselves about the teacher's belongings.

Some students must have taken notice of her negligence,

Some students might have planned to steal her purse and other belongings.

And it happened today.

Her purse was stolen.

As usual, she left her beg on a table in front of the room and went elsewhere to take care of other businesses.

When she returned, she discovered that her purse was stolen.

It was smart of her to inform other teachers immediately about the stolen purse.

A thorough search for the stolen purse was carried out.

An interrogation among the students in the class was carried out fast.

After much probing, it was discovered that one of the boys had stolen her purse and left the room.

The boy was later caught by one of the teachers at the school gate but the purse was not with him.

Later the boy met the teacher and returned her purse.

He claimed that he had found her purse dropped down under the table.

He had picked it up and kept the purse for her; he was scared that other students might want to steal it.

The teacher was happy with her recovered purse.

She made up her mind not to probe further.

Instead she thanked the boy for his kind gesture.

She checked her purse in front of the boy and was happy to discover that nothing was stolen.

The boy grinned.

And the teacher heaved a sigh of relief.

It was a good lesson for her and for all of us not to leave our personal belongings behind while doing our bidding elsewhere.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Aging Parents



I wonder how many of us do visit our aging parents.

Some of us live far away and hardly ever visit them. Some of us always expect other family members to take care of them. Some of us only phone them once in a while. And some of us need frequent reminders to visit them.

And I wonder how many of us do talk to our aging parents.

Some of us never really try to spend time talking to them. And some of us never take the initiative to talk to them first.

It is funny to think just how much we can tell them if we want to. We can talk to them about the current issues. We can talk about what is going on in our lives. We can talk about our problems and seek collective wisdom. We can talk about pregnancy and parenting......

And I wonder how many of us do bring our aging parents along wherever we go.

I wonder how many of us do bring them to live in with us, though I do know of friends who bring their parents to live with them for their own selfish reasons.

I wonder how many of us do bring them for traveling, shopping trips, family holidays and for just walking around the neighborhood.

I wonder how many of us do bring them into our family and our children's life.

I wonder how many of us do bring them to the church.

I wonder how many of us do help our parents to deal with their concerns.

I wonder how many of us do help them to live comfortably.

I wonder how many of us do help them to better their lifestyles.

I wonder how many of us do support their desire to live independently just as we do.

I wonder how many of us do help them to relax and enjoy during their stay with us.

I wonder how many of us do support their well-established values and beliefs.

I, for one, have failed them so much...

And I miss them now...now that they are gone.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Distant Love



The flight is delayed.

It seems common among budget commercial airlines to wait for "a little while" for more passengers to go aboard.

With the worldwide economic crisis, commercial airlines are facing tougher and stiffer competitions.

To survive, many airlines resort to price war, coupled with various other incentives and benefits.

The general public are happy with these measures.

And cheaper airfare seems to be the major consideration of most passengers today.

Now everyone can fly.

And I am waiting faithfully for my daughter to arrive.

*******

Waiting for our loved ones to arrive is not going to be easy.

There are so many uncertainties.

Deep inside we pray that the flight will arrive safely in time.

Deep inside we yearn to see them and hold them in our arms, though it may just be for a week.

Deep inside we hope that they are healthier and stronger, and that all is well with them.

Deep inside we hope that our love for one another will live on forever, going deeper and stronger.

Deep inside we hope to cherish and care for one another more and more.

*******

It is announced that the flight will arrived at 5.30 p.m.

My heart leaps and pounds.

10 more minutes...

It is a great feeling when I know that it will be soon.

*******

Here comes my daughter, smiling and waving at us.

She is coming home for her one week holiday.

And she is coming back alone on a distant trip.

We hug one another.

It feels so nice to see one another again...

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Timber Trucks



Every time when I drive pass a timber truck, my heart will be throbbing fast. My face becomes pale and my breathing extraordinary fast.

Most timber trucks never really slow down on a long straight rural road, especially when there are no enforcement officers around.

I am scared that the long and heavy logs may just fall loose from the truck, and crash on me and my family.

I frequently dwell on this possibility that it has eventually become my daydreams and my nightmares.

Sometimes I am anxious to know whether the truck drivers are well qualified. Some of them look really young, possibly fresh school leavers. Many are very careless and reckless in driving.

I used to meet with timber trucks after office hours and during the weekends.

It is common to see them overloaded with logs of all sizes.

It is common to see them swaying from side to side.

It is common to see them overtaking many vehicles.

I wonder just how safe our journey can be with so many timber trucks around.

Will we be the next victims?

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Sacrificial Love



Two boys are dividing their colorful marbles.

The older boy says, "This is mine, this is yours, this is mine, this is yours, this is mine. This is mine, this is yours, this is mine, this is yours, this is mine. This is mine, this is yours, this is mine, this is yours, this is mine....."

The younger boy is nodding his head and smiling happily.

The older boy is secretly laughing away.

Then the elder boy continues, "This is mine, this is yours, this is mine. This is mine, this is yours, this is mine. This is mine, this is yours, this is mine....."

The younger boy starts to feel suspicious when he sees his older brother smiling mischievously.

He looks at their shares, and suddenly realizes that the older boy has more marbles.

The younger boy stamps his foot and screams, "You cheat!"

The quarrel begins.......

Does this sound familiar?

*******

Human is by nature selfish.

All of us will naturally seek our own self-interest in every possible way.

All of us are born to be defensive, always ready to protect ourselves.

All of us are motivated to do what is best for ourselves.

********

Confucius said, "Don't do to others what you don't want others do to you."

Rabbi Manis Friedman Hillel said, "What is hateful to you, don't do to others."

Everything starts with oneself.

Even the Bible said, "Love your neighbors as yourself."

********

Some of us are so self-pleasing and arrogant that they have no rooms for others in their lives.

Some of us do sacrifice for our family members.

Some go further; they will do everything for their relatives and friends.

But the LORD Jesus Christ forgave even His enemies, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34).

*******

We may all be selfish because of our sinful nature.

But we can changed for the better.

The LORD Jesus Christ has said, "Love your neighbors as yourself."

Let us starts by loving our loved ones more.

And in due time, we may love our friends and neighbors, our societies and communities, our nation and the world at large.

Sacrificial love is not easy and it is often not immediately rewarding.

But it is the one and only way to turn the selfish world around.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Does winning really matter?


Does winning really matter to you?

Some quarrel until the whole family is involved in the conflict.

Some argue until they are blue in the face, keep on insisting that they are right.

Some scream and shout until the local community is well aware of the situation.

Some use very abusive language and made ridiculous accusations and very serious threats.

Some dig out past stories and blow the whole issue way out of proportion.

Some get up and push and pull one another until some fall down and are beaten.

Reputations are destroyed, and all the money in the world can't buy them back.

Properties are destroyed and windows and doors are shattered.

Relationships are left devastated and forever changed.

And all because of selfish interests and motives.

And all because of personal reasons or interests.

And all because of jealousy and business rivalries.

And all because of big mouth, big ego, and bad judgments.

And all because of competition and fighting for attention.

Does winning really matter to you?

When you are in the field, winning is the only thing.

It is when you leave the field that you begin to feel that the price to win is too high.

I prefer friendship than enemies.

And I will make sure that I win friends always.

Life is too short to have too many enemiies on our journey.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Sun And Rain


It had not been raining for the past two weeks.

Everyday the weather was scorching hot and humid.

The haze was thick and visibility was poor with the indiscriminate burning.

Many were having cough and fever.

Work had become slow and arduous.

Many people were not in the mood to talk, to joke and to sing.

The working environment became difficult and stressful with the many datelines due back to back .

Trees and plants dried up and wilted with the lack of water.

A few fish in my pond had just died when the water became shallow and contaminated.

The river nearby narrowed considerably and few children were seen bathing in it.

The night was stuffy and humid.

The fans were at full blast. Many still tossing and turning all night.

So sleep didn't come easy.

*******

Then the heavy rain came and it lifted up everyone's mood.

Many people were seen talking happily, joking, singing and laughing.

The children had cheerfully rushed to the river enjoying their swims and dives.

The trees and plants were again refreshed and revived in the soaking rain.

The fish in the pond were seen happily consumed the feed provided.

The air was stale and musty initially. But the caress of the cool breeze slowly refreshed the body, the mind and the spirit.

The weather was cool and windy again.

The rain was most pleasant and welcoming.

*******

Then the rain stopped.

Everyone was then back to normal routine at work, at school, in life and so on.

No one seemed to thank the LORD God for the sun and rain.

What matter most was their themselves.

What is lacking in men is always the same – thanksgiving and gratitude.

How sad.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

We Belong Together



"Do what is right."

This is the recurring thought that always comes into my mind every time I have unsolved problems.

Often time life can be very stressful and frustrating when the surrounding people always bend on backstabbing and fault finding.

Often time life can be very boring and monotonous when day in day out we have to keep tight on our daily routines.

Often time life can be very disheartening and lonely when all around are people who love challenges and competitions.

But I believe we can make a difference if we do what is right by listening to the heart.

We may have to adapt to the system. But once in a while, we must not be afraid to be different.

Learning to work and have fun with the people around do help to rise our spirit and cheer us up.

Sometimes I learn to count on my blessings more than looking deep into my problems, and this helps to calm me down and make me feel more thankful.

Sometimes I learn to put all my heart into the things I do, and I start to enjoy my day.

Sometimes I speak to myself quietly, encouraging myself to go on despite the troubles ahead.

Sometimes I learn not to expect too much from my subordinates, I learn to believe that they have done their best.

I learn not to voice my anger, scream aloud and insulting others on things that cannot be corrected and improved. I learn to be forgiving and forgetting.

I learn to analyze and evaluate my works so as to improve my skills and my talents.

I learn not to anticipate earthly rewards and recognitions, when I learn that God the Father will not forget my good deeds.

I learn to exercise the power of team work, for I know "Together Everyone Achieves More".

And I learn to share all I am and all I have.

It is not difficult after all when we realize that we belong together.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Can You Tell Me What Is Love?


They said when you have someone always in your mind and you share many common thoughts and interests, you belong to one another. Then you should come together. My answer is "Slow down." You may not feel for one another and be willing to commit yourselves.

They said when you have fallen for someone deeply and you share many common concerns and cares, you are made for one another. Then you should be in the same love boat, ready for lifetime adventure. My answer is "Slow down." Try to be more rational than emotional, your feelings for one another may be short-lived and you may regret your decision later.

They said when you have found someone whom you care and who can also take good care of you, you are destined to get married. My answer is "Slow down". Love is not acting in a movie; it is a real life adventure with many feelings and thoughts.

Love is not just thoughts. It needs real and everlasting concerns and cares for one another in every aspect of our lives. And it is also the outpouring of our thoughts and feelings.

Love is not just feelings. It needs sincere thoughts and wishes for one another. And it requires real actions to bring out that feelings.

And love is not just actions. It is actions that are the results of careful thoughts and feelings for one another.

Adam yearned for a helper and he found his perfect mate in Eve. Adam called Eve "bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh."

Love is a total sacrifice for one another. It requires complete surrender.

Love is a full responsibility for one another. It requires total commitment.

Love is a genuine concern for one another. It requires sincerity and truth.

And love is unconditional.

And love is forever.

And sometimes love is unthinkable, unreasonable, very emotional, and action-packed.

So what is love? Now I am confused.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Oh Doggie, We Cry For You


Someone has poisoned our dog.

Doggie joined our family two years ago. It was a cute little dog and always ready with its many tricks and moves. Doggie filled our family with much thrills and excitements.

Doggie didn't like noise. He would bark at the sound of firecracker or people talking loudly in the vicinity.

But doggie recognized familiar faces and it would wagged its tail and greeted them with his familiar tricks and moves.

Dogie had mood too. Sometimes, he refused to take bath or played with you when he was not in the mood.

We didn't castrate doggie but we didn't allow him to mix freely with other dogs.

Doggie lived under a set of rules.

Doggie always shitted at his usual place and it would not go near the place again until the place was thoroughly cleaned.

Doggie had to rush out of the house to urinate. He would howled and barked until someone brought him outside the house.

Sometimes doggie needed a stroll and he would bring his chain to you.

Doggie enjoyed playing with insects and little kitten, but not bigger animals.

Doggie was very protective and he would not tolerate strangers peeping outside the house. He would rush to them and frightened them off.

But doggie listened to everyone of us. And he would always do our biddings.

But someone had poisoned doggie.

Doggie suffered more than a week, vomitting and shitting uncontrollably. He slowly became weak. We didn't have animal doctor around town and we had no experience with sick animal.

Doggie didn't want to eat for a week. It resorted to plain water which we put plenty around him.

Doggie coughed in pains and couldn't move anymore. But we were not around to take care of him because we were sending our children off by air to their respective college and university.

Doggie breathed its last. He died at about 11 a.m. yesterday morning.

Thank you doggie for filling our lives with so much joy and laughter. Thank you for accompanying us when we were sad and bogged down by problems.

Doggie, rest in peace...

Oh doggie, you will be our last dog... for we can't tolerate and accept the fact that someone will be that cruel as to poison our dog.

Oh doggie, we cry for you

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Leave Them To God



This week my wife and I were to send our son and daughter to their respective college and university.

It was a hectic week in view of the heavy workload and the tight schedule. we were indeed busy and hardly had time to breathe.

But it must be done. It concerned the future of our children. They are excellent in their studies and they deserved to further their studies in their field of interest.

They are great kids and we are very proud of them. Our son is doing medic and our daughter is dong computer science.

On Monday, we were to send our son. We put up a night in the airport. It must be quite sometime since I went without sleep for a day or two. But it was worth it and indeed a great day to remember. All of us finally did doze off automatically despite our will and determination to stay alert.

Bringing our son for his registration made us proud. All Parents greeted one another with smiles and laughter. We had many things to share for we were all very proud of our children.

Helping our son to clean up his room and buying the necessary daily supplies were also great moment of delight. Finally, we realized that our family members were so close and we had so much in common.

Parting with our son was not easy especially for me. My wife took it calmly but I was secretly in tears. Our son looked okay and he told us that he was confident to do well.

We said goodbye to our son. He looked calm and we believed he would be okay.

That evening we were on our journey home, leaving our hearts with our son.

It was not easy for us since our daughter would be leaving us for her university.

But We leave them to God, knowing that the LORD God will take good of care of them, much much better than what we can do.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Love Others As Ourselves



The Bible says "love your neighbor as yourself" and "do unto others as you would have others do unto you.". And Confucius says "What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others."

So I believe it is a known fact that we love ourselves and we will do everything just for our own good.

But what about those who love to punish and torture themselves? Some say it is to purify sins and to save souls. Some say it is to discipline oneself and to rectify one's faults. So I believe they do that because they love themselves.

But what about those who often think of committing suicide? They claim that they are not willing to bear the pains and sufferings anymore. They are telling that they cannot endure the nightmare and the dark dreams any longer. But I still think they do that because they love themselves.

We look into the mirror everyday but we never claim that we are ugly. We pose and smile in front of the mirror. We comb our hair, we shave, we put on makeup, we tighten our tie, and we do everything... and still we slowly and carefully admiring ourselves in front of the mirror. So I declare the old sayings are still true: we do love ourselves.

All of us take good care of ourselves, our loved ones, our properties and everything that we have and desire to have. And we all know that we do all this because we love ourselves.

But the frightening fact nowadays is that many just do not know they love themselves. They continue to do wrong and hurt others until something happens to them. They only regret their actions after they have wounded or hurt someone. They only show remorse after they have murdered or raped someone. They only repent sincerely when the whole family is broken up or when the friendship is beyond repair. Doing things indiscriminately at the spur of a moment always cause much harm and hatred.

If only we know we love ourselves, we would be more careful in our speech, our writings, our actions and our behavior...

If only we love ourselves, we would love others as ourselves.