Becoming Better Bible Readers

From a young adults retreat organised by my church in May 2017.

Why is there a need to read the Bible well?

#1 There is a right way to read the Bible.

2 Tim 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved,3 a worker bwho has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.

#2 When we read the Bible rightly, we gain life and immortality.

2 Tim 1:10 and which now has ybeen manifested through zthe appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus,awho abolished death and bbrought life and cimmortality to light through the gospel, Continue reading “Becoming Better Bible Readers”

The Stories Behind the Histories We Tell

#SingaporePlatformForEastWestDialogue

How sensitive are we to the contexts in which we use ideas and words?

Recently began attending a series of discussions organised by Para Limes on “East-West” issues. This one (held on 14 June 2017) was with Vernie Oliveiro, Senior Assistant Director (Policy Strategy) with the Strategy Management Unit of the Ministry of National Development, who’s trained in history and has a strong interest in the Singaporean identity.

Continue reading “The Stories Behind the Histories We Tell”

Multi-lingualism & Social Identities

#SingaporePlatformForEastWestDialogue

“What role can Singapore play in enriching the dialogue between East and West?” – Dr. Helena Gao

Recently began attending a series of discussions organised by Para Limes on “East-West” issues, the first of which was chaired by Dr. Helena Gao, linguistics researcher and director of NTU’s Bilingual Development Lab, and held on 11 May 2017.

Continue reading “Multi-lingualism & Social Identities”

Vultures of Culture

The commodification of culture doesn’t always kill culture; one could point to many examples of culture thriving for its own intrinsic value while also producing (yes, in the language of production) transactional value.

Some then say, “Be careful! Lest you kill the golden goose,” thinking they’re stewarding this culture in question. Yet, perhaps it is the very conceptualisation of this “golden goose” that drags culture into “being”, instead of its continuous “becoming”, and that bestows culture with form – a discrete manifestation. 

Vultures gather, bearing gifts, unaware they’re exacerbating the dying. At times, perhaps when fortunate, this goose bleeds slowly on and passes peacefully into oblivion. But, mostly (I say this for effect and with a tinge of truth), it limps on hollow, without a soul.

Perhaps we only truly own something when we give it away. Perhaps, too, what we didn’t struggle for, we can merely seek to behold, never to own nor to hold.

《拓荒者·摆渡人》(300317)

“由此岸踏入河川,从彼岸走向城镇。由此岸……,从彼岸……”
少年涉水时,反复地嘀咕着。

少年后来才知道,走向城镇的他经过了天上来的河水的洗礼,已非踏入河川的他。

走过河时,少年一度不断回头眺望。渡口、渔家、绿林、山脉,而后,不过河上丝丝的雨,稠稠的雾。

大头大头,下雨不愁;你有雨伞,我有大头!
大头里的影像处理器非常on cue地重现儿时母亲逗趣的小歌谣。
Continue reading “《拓荒者·摆渡人》(300317)”

The stars have long gone.

The stars have long gone.
Homebound, two million light years in emptiness.

Night has fallen, for while now, her solace freely given.
“This city never sleeps.”
To those who find the silence too quiet, or tremble in the dark.
“…woooOOOSHHHhhh…” The sound of wheels and wet streets.

The wind’s been at it for a month, or two;
an East Wind, it enters my abode undeterred, cleanses my soul.

Next Stop: Oei (WEE) Tiong Ham Building

In September 2015, I dropped NUS OCA an email regarding the potential mispronunciation of Oei Tiong Ham Building. The recording read it as “Oi” instead of “Wee”. They promised to look into it and change it. I think somewhere along the way, it was changed but I simply didn’t notice because it was no longer mispronounced. But today I heard it!

“Next stop: Weeeee Tiong Ham Building.”

Oh, how sweet…

Baptism Testimony

Do work on your testimony, about half an A4 page, based on the 2 questions:
1. Why do you want to get baptised?
2. How has Christ impacted your life?

1. I want to be baptised because it is instructed of those who believe in Jesus.

2. In the past, I thought I could live without God (or gods, for the matter). After all, what if there weren’t any of these things? Wouldn’t my life then misguided? When I tried to lead a life that was essentially god-less, I realised two things about myself. Continue reading “Baptism Testimony”

城市人的孤单(履历单)

2016年10月21日:

城市人的孤单
不过是薪水单 病假单
业绩单 报销单 水电单 房贷单……诸如此类很多很多单。

2016年11月21日:

聘人手法日新月异,最近最奇怪的事某某人问了一句:“请问你当领导的时候有得到什么样的反馈吗?”

  1. 你酱问,我说什么都算喔?
  2. 没有耶……
  3. (哪里好意思自己夸自己?那么……就说说该进步的地方好了。)
  4. 你还问:“还有呢?”这……人人爱我怎么说得出口呢……(我说笑的。)
  5. 且慢,这问题的用意到底是……?

2016年12月11日:

11月头星展银行一通电话让我误以为就业在握。上周星展银行另一通电话却让我意识到自己的单纯(又或痴愚)。

城市人的孤单其实还包括那履历单。

在寻觅这第一份工作的路途中,理想与抱负渐渐烟消。时而过于浪漫,时而不够矜持。闭门羹吃多了,泊油路似乎也走尽了。

这就业市场讲究的,来来去去,不过就是——令人质疑这一家家机构是否严重人格分裂的——那几样。

  • 创新精神,但必须走过既定的求学道路。
  • 领导能力,但请切记:要你领导的不是族群,更不是改革,而是华丽大型活动的主办团队。
  • 团队精神,但说真的,要如何表现团队精神呢?不如让申报者毛遂自荐似的自我报上如何使得团队运作无误?“啊!这便是团队精神!”是吧?

说话有些刻薄,其实只不过为了凸显间中许许多多矛盾之处。总觉得寻职者就如此让各个机构玩弄五指间。当然,旁观者清,这一切其实不过是我吃不到葡萄的缘故。

你争我夺的就业市场,厌倦了还是得插一脚么?

是呀,因为履历单铺的不是什么康庄大道,咱走的是不平等待遇、关系横行的懵懂小路。

在不完美的精英制度下,少了这一番磨练、反思,又哪来动力使这国家继续前进?