Yan's Corner - In Touch

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

From blogspot to wordpress ...

I have finally decided to move to wordpress ....following dobbs. Thanks, dobbs, for the free tutorials.

Visit me at wordpress. See you there!

Some Good Humour in School?

While I have read one heart-warming story in Guidepost early morning, I also read a not-so-nice story in The Borneo Post today.

But, first start from a story from home.

Chris (my 10-year-old son) goes to a government-aided Chinese Primary School. The School was formerly a mission school. Therefore, the image of it being a Christian (Methodist) school is still being maintained in that the Board Members are selected from members of Methodist Churches. The school also accepted the participation of the students in Christian Fellowship as one of the extra-curriculum activities of the students. However, this year, the Christian Fellowship is being replaced by moral class. That's not a big issue because I believe home teaching on Christian values and faith does equally good job. Besides, our children go to Sunday School on Sunday.

What is horrifying is the horror stories that the teachers tell our children in school. It's Ching Ming season now. Chris came home last Friday relating to me the "ghost" stories told by his Life Skills' teacher. The teacher told the class that one of the teachers' husband met in a road accident because it's the season that "ghosts" roam around harming people. The teacher "warned" the children that it is not a business of being supersitious, it is real. Then he went on to relate how recently in one burial grounds in Sibu someone who had died for tens of years yet the body is sitll not decomposed. How the dead talked to the living that "she" was being submerged in water ...

Being grounded firmly in Christian faith, Chris took such horror stories as stories only. However, he remarked, "Mummy, that teacher says he is a Christian."

Back to The Borneo Post's story...

Donkeys more loyal than wives: Textbook

New Delhi: Housewives and donkeys are much the same except that the beasts of burden are better companions, complain less and are more loyal, according to a school textbook used in India's western state of Rajasthan.

"A donkey is like a housewife. In fact, the donkey is a shade better, for while the housewife may sometimes complain and walk off to her parents' home, you'll never catch the donkey being disloyal to his master," yesterday's Times of India quoted the Hindi-language book as saying.

The book, for 14 year-olds, was approved by the State's Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party administration but has sparked protests from its women's unit, the report said.

Shimla Prasher, chief of the party's women's wing, has threatened protests if the "objectionable sections" are not deleted. The state education department however noted that women were not singled out - politicians also were rated.

"The same chapter also compares the donkey to politicians, calling the animal thick-skinned," a state education offcial was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

Another state education offcial said the textbook was just an attempt at making school lessons humourous.

"The comparison was made in good humour. However, the protests have been taken note of and the education board is in the process of removing it," A.R. Khan, a state education officer, told the newspaper. Rajasthan state, known for its conservative attitude towards women, has a ratio of 886 females to 1,000 males, according to the 2001 national censes. - AFP

Aha, Desi, more HoLYwood Script writers in the making! What do you want? Horror stories or humour stories? You ask for it!

The Magic of Three Days

Guideposts was one of the magazines that I read during my school days. It was introduced to us by one of my sixth form teachers. I read that in school library during those days. Many years later, when I married my husband, I read Guidepost again. My mother-in-law has a good collection of Guideposts and Readers' Digest.

Now, I read part of Guidepost online! I am always warmed by the stories in the magazine. Here is one on Good Friday and Easter on the "Chinese Ching Ming Festival" -

It was a beautiful spring day, and a sense of peace stayed with me as I left the cathedral on Easter Monday morning. I paused for a moment on top of the steps leading to the avenue, now crowded with people rushing to their jobs.

Sitting in her usual place inside a small archway was the old flower lady. At her feet corsages and boutonnieres were parading on top of a spread-open newspaper.

The flower lady was smiling, her wrinkled old face alive with some inner joy. I started down the stairs—then, on an impulse, turned and picked out a flower.

As I put it in my lapel, I said, “You look happy this morning.”

“Why not? Everything is good.”

She was dressed so shabbily and seemed so very old that her reply startled me.

“You’ve been sitting here for many years now, haven’t you? And always smiling. You wear your troubles well.”

“You can’t reach my age and not have troubles,” she replied. “Only it’s like Jesus and Good Friday . . . ” She paused for a moment.

“Yes?” I prompted.

“Well, when Jesus was crucified on Good Friday, that was the worst day for the whole world. And when I get troubles I remember that, and then I think of what happened only three days later—Easter and our Lord arising. So when I get troubles, I’ve learned to wait three days . . . somehow everything gets all right again.”

And she smiled good-bye. Her words still follow me whenever I think I have troubles. Give God a chance to help . . . wait three days.

Here is the link to the story.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

First Things First

Three of my Pioneer girls in Girls’ Brigade are going for JPA scholarship interview today. They have obtained straight As in their SPM Examination. These girls have been with me in the GB’s Pioneer Venture Program for the past two years. They, together with other 11 girls, have been very conscientious and showed much qualities of leadership.

If you listen to teens long enough, you will notice that they are looking for help in the mind-bogging major decisions of life. They are asking questions like –

Career: Should I take up medicine or engineering or law? Should I follow my parents’ wish or my own interest? Should I ….
Friendships: Am I supposed to stay with the girl who is always on her handphone at the camp or the girl who is always on her i-pod nano?
BGR: Is he the one God prepares for me to be my life partner?

I always use one of Stephen Covey’s seven habits – First Things First. Seek His Kingdom first, and all these things shall be added unto you.

Trust God. Trust Christ as Saviour and Lord.

Surrender All. Submit to God totally.

Share All. Share your faith, not just only extras of your food.

Obey. Obey your parents.

When you have First Things First – all other things will follow….

God Bless you, Jia Jing, Yu Xuan and Ivy.

Monday, April 03, 2006

A Prayer for Hard Times

Entering April. It has been pretty quiet here. Some comforting news. Some bad news. Comforting because Yek's husband who has been in ICU shows signs of God's works. She said in a SMS this morning that reads,

Thank God that he is recovering. Please continue to pray.

Another SMS came in late last night. Another dear friend in Girls' Brigade has a relapse of cancer treated twelve years ago.

Last night, little Chris sew a T-Shirt and a sweater for this soft toy to keep it warm. He used his old school socks, some buttons and the T-shirt even bear a little cross. He said, I quote here -

This little care bear to keep us near to God. Just like I cloth the little care bear, God cares for us.

Meet God the Habakkuk's way today -

I have heard all about you, Lord, and I am filled with awe by the amazing things you have done.
In this time of our deep need, begin again to help us, as you did in years gone by.
Show us your power to save us.
And in your anger, remember your mercy ....
Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vine;
even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren;
even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salavation.
Habakkuk 3:2, 17-18