April 29, 2009

Unwelcome Guest

"To flush or not to flush?" That's the big question first thing in the morning. I woke up and saw a R-A-T (that's how my mom calls it, and for some reason she must spell the word not wanting it to know she is talking about it) swimming in the toilet bowl! This is the first time I saw one in my house. But this is the second time I'm confronted with "to kill or not to kill" question. Last year, in my other house, I saw a little mouse swimming on my laundry bucket. It looked so cute and everyone in the house felt bad for it as it struggled to get out of the water. I couldn't decide what to do so I let my children have their way....set it free!

This time, I was alone with the cat. Timmy, our cat, also didn't know what to do with it! We are both too kind to implement our judgment on this unwelcome guest. Honestly, I hate being in this situation. I once wanted to become a lawyer but never a judge. Too fainthearted for the job! But there are times in our lives where we have to be brave and firm. Kill the unwelcome guest like the sin that lurks around the dark corners in our lives! Don't just shoo it away or it comes back another day. Well, it came back! I mean the rat! And I'm not yet that brave to make my decision. Was glad my son came down to the rescue. I let him face my problem. He scooped it out with a fish net and freed it out the gate!

Because lesson still not learned, you think there will be a third time?

Warning: This video is not for fainthearted. I don't even think this is appropriate for "Daily Divine" theme. But as I said, anything that happens in our day is worth noting and there are lessons to learn. So here it is!

April 27, 2009

Canopy of Blessing

The sky in Songkla, South Thailand is blue.

The sky in Kanchanaburi, South Thailand is blue.

The sky in Penang, Malaysia is blue.

The sky in Ipoh, Malaysia is blue.

The sky in the city where I live now is blue.

"Lan, lan tian" or blue, blue sky. I could not believe that my friend hasn't seen a blue sky in her entire life! "Is it true that the sky in your country is blue?" my friend asked. "Of course!" I cluelessly jumped with my answer. "Oh, lan,lan tian...." She wishfully sighed.

Not long after living in that side of the world, I came to realize that many people in that city have not seen a blue sky. All they have seen is a gray sky, a dark gray sky, a grayish sky, and a black sky. If a blue sky is a reflection of the sea, that place, being the world's farthest city away from the sea, would have a slim chance enjoying a blue sky.

Blue sky...... Such blessing often ignored!

I'm blessed indeed, The world is mine; Oh, God, forgive me when I whine.
Red Foley, from Found in a Book

Photos: Naomi & Ruth 2009

Weight-lifter leaf

Another nature's surprise for me this year is this massive water lily leaf (or lily-pad) that can hold 30 kilos of anything! It is said that water lilies grow best in calm water, like this one in the picture which was taken when we visited an ancient site last month.They look more beautiful with their flowers (see the buds coming out?) Nobody wanted to try stepping on a leaf so we put the heaviest bag on one, and guess what? We didn't see any movement at all, it never showed any sway and even the water kept still. Wow! The leaf looks so thin but it is unbelievably strong! The word "immovable and steadfast" came to mind. This is how one should look like when heavily laden....I pray to be like one.

Doubts and mistrust are the mere panic of timid imagination, which the steadfast heart will conquer, and the large mind transcend.

Helen Keller quotes (American Author and Educator who was blind and deaf. 1880-1968)

International Standard Version (©2008)
Therefore, my dear brothers, be steadfast, unmovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that the work that you do for the Lord isn't wasted. 1 Corinthians 15:58

Photo: ZRM Feb 2009

April 26, 2009

Called to Fruitfulness

I have a small vegetable garden in my backyard. I grow veggies and spices: basil, rosemary, lemon grass, spring onions, ginger and pandan leaves. My favorite ones are those that bear fruit: bitter gourd, bell pepper, hot chili, and tomato. My yard is also blessed with some fruit bearing trees: banana, rose apple (macopa), and mango.

My goal for each of my plant is to bloom and/or bear fruit. That's it! I don't plant to see it die. Same with our Maker. He is after the fruit of our lives. We don't live just to be alive. We are called to fruitfulness.

Life without love is like a tree without blossoms or fruit.
Khalil Gibran

Photos by: Rose

April 25, 2009

Flowers in My Garden

These are the few of the many flowers I have in my garden. Everyday I wonder of their beauty and uniqueness. One cannot be compared with the other.
Even the ones of the same variety, though they seem to look alike, each of them differ from one another in size, in shade of color, the petal arrangement, and the length of stems.
I don't know all them by name but surely their Maker does. I'm sure He knows, too, the number of petals and leaves as much as He knows the number of my hair.
He is mindful of His creation. Not one sparrow falls down on the ground without His knowledge and I wonder how it is with flowers.
Does He feel sad as I do each time I see a dying plant in my garden? Does He rejoice seeing new buds or when seedlings spring up from the ground?
My mind wanders when I'm in the garden......There are questions left unanswered.....but that does not matter.....
Gardening gives me power over life. I make life happen. I rise above all other created things!

Where flowers bloom so does hope.
Lady Bird Johnson, Public Roads: Where Flowers Bloom

Earth laughs in flowers. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Hamatreya"

Photos:N & Z, Summer 2009

Gardening My Heart

Gardening is one of my favorite chores. I visit my garden after feeding all the pets and before preparing breakfast for the family. This means I really have to be up before everybody else does to have enough time to say "good morning" to all my plants. I have different varieties of them. Some need low maintenance which require only daily watering. Some need high maintenance which require fertilizer, exact amount of shed or sunlight, and occasional tilling of soil around them. And in this time of the year, where temperature reaches to 40+ degree celcius, my plants need extra more water and care. That's a lot of work to do but I don't mind because I just love gardening.

Recently, I came to realize that I do gardening in my heart, too! I grow flowers in my garden as well as I grow love in my heart. My heart needs my daily attention (weeding, tilling, watering, cultivating...) because love don't just grow by itself.

"Show me your garden and I shall tell you who you are." Alfred Austin

In my garden there is a large place for sentiment. My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams. The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful.
quote / saying by Abram L. Urban

">Photo: by RSM 4-25-09, my garden in bkk

April 22, 2009

Emptiness Aches Every Heart

Like this empty jar, lonely, parched and dry, so are the hearts of many.... rich or poor, young and old, man's heart aches to be filled. It does not hurt to share a drop or two even if we are not filled to the brim. A few drops will make a difference in an empty jar.

When one begins to purposefully perform acts of kindness, the spirit changes and soon doing good deeds becomes a focal point for our life; doing good begins to be the same as feeling good. The periods of emptiness when we search for the "meaning of it all" begin to fill with acts of kindness.

Gary Ryan Blair quotes (Motivational speaker and author)

Photo: by RSM, 4-11-09, Ancient City

Smiling Heaven

My son went out to catch a breeze one warm night on the first quarter of this year. Awed of what he saw, he came back to grab the camera to capture a big smile heaven gave him. The universe has its way of surprise, big and small. This one is my biggest his year: a quarter moon, Jupiter and an unknown star formed a happy face.

What really interests me is whether God had any choice in the creation of the world. Albert Einstein

"Life gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars."
Henry Van Dyke

Photo: Ben

Looking Down to Reach Heaven

I took this picture when I visited a religious site yesterday. This tower is just one among many. Some are plated gold or silver and some are meticulously decorated with ceramic tiles and precious stones. Men who made them spent not just money but time and sweat, as well. Piece by piece, rain or shine.... the work must be done. Why so high? To reach what? Don't we know that looking down we see dirty, cupped hands. It is when we bend down to them that we reach heaven.

"Let your light shine before men so that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven."
- Matthew 5:16
"I still say a church steeple with a lightening rod on top shows a lack of confidence."
- Doug McLeod

"God enters by a private door into every individual."
- Ralph Waldo

>Photo: by RSM, 4-21-09,BKK

Up, we look up. Down, we look down

Those up there stiffed-neck looking up to reach high....
soul pains with cravings and discontent.

While others below are weighed down in their sorrow....
drowning deep feeling low.

Fame is a vapor, popularity an accident, and riches take wings. Only one thing endures and that is character.
Horace Greeley

Don't worry so much about your self-esteem. Worry more about your character. Integrity is its own reward.

Similar Quotes. About: Ethics quotes, Self-esteem quotes.
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