Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Prayers from the heart

Effective prayers come from the heart. At least that's what I learnt last weekend. I was translating a short English prayer into Malay for my friend who has been assigned to say it for their church international night. It was a beautifully worded prayer, one that will surely touch many hearts.

Then a friend's mom asked to look at it, and she started copying down the words. She is a Muslim. Surprised I ask her "why are you copying that?" She said the words are so beautiful she surely can learn something from it. Stupidly I asked again, "but don't you have to pray in Arabic?" She said, "We do, but that's one kind of prayers. The other is from your heart, one that you learn from good sources, then you say from your heart with all your feelings poured into it".

It was a valuable lesson to me. Prayers are universal. And the most effective ones come from the heart. They are beyond religions, they are between you and your God and no one else.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Why Women Cry -(and this remains a fav of mine :-))

Upon opening my inbox today, I saw this forward from my cousin T. I know I've read it many times and yet it always does something good to my mood.

A little boy asked his mother, "Why are you crying?" "Because I'm a woman, " she told him. "I don't understand, " he said. His Mom just hugged him and said , "And you never will." Later the little boy asked his father, "Why does mother seem to cry for no reason?" "All women cry for no reason, " was all his dad could say.

The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry...

Finally he put in a call to God. When God got on the phone, he asked , "God, why do women cry so easily?"

God said

"When I made the woman she had to be special.

I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world, yet gentle enough to give comfort.

I gave her an inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times comes from her children.

I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going when everyone else gives up, and take care of her family through sickness and fatigue without complaining.

I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances, even when her child has hurt her very badly.

I gave her strength to carry her husband through his faults and fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart.

I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife , but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly.

And finally, I gave her a tear to shed. This is hers exclusively to use whenever it is needed."

"You see my son, " said God, "the beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears , the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair.

The beauty of a woman must be seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart - the place where love resides."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Time is His

I'd expect this words to be written by someone who truly believes in God :-) Yes, I am one such person. (I understand that not everyone does and I respect their rights not to though). Believing in God, to me, is something very personal. It might be something one learns from one's religion, but most of all, it is something that accumulates through the years, from one's life experiences. Perhaps it's a gift...who knows.

Anyway, a very dear friend wrote the phrase in an email to me not so long ago. That, after I whined to her about how slow my plans are to materialize. About how many times my plans have gone off at a tangent, and about how out of control do I feel about my life at present. What an apt reminder. It got me reflecting, and accepting.

We don't plan our birth or death- those must be the biggest evidence that time is His. We can only try our best at achieving our goals. Whether or not we manage to do it on time, i.e our time, we can't really tell. But believing that time is His helps in overcoming the frustration should the worst happen...

Monday, September 14, 2009

Dwindling fire

It's been two months that the weight has decided to remain stagnant. The most I lost in the two month period was 0.5kg, then I gained it again. It is indeed very frustrating. There's still so much to get rid of. I can feel the flabs and the bulges that I've yet to lose (eeuw...), and yet I can't make myself work any harder to achieve the goal. Oh dear, dwindling fire... I can barely remember the motivation that I started off with in Feb. How I used to be so motivated! I guess what happened gradually between February and now have been:
1. addiction to baking - I feel like I'm missing out on the good things in life if I don't learn to bake properly (sigh). Now it's at least a baking session per week.
2. too little time- and not necessarily spent on doing my real 'work'. Could also be on playing scrabble online (It hurts to admit this but scrabble has taken precedence over my exercise time)
3. winter- what a lame excuse. But it does get me hungry all the time, thus the calorie intake exceeded the recommendation.

At least the good thing that still remains is my calorie consciousness. I try to take food from the empty-cal group when I'm hungry- fruits etc.

I really need to reignite the fire.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Special sunday

Last sunday was really special to the family. For one thing, it was father's day and it was also my second daughter A's 9th birthday. I can't believe it has been 9 years since I first cradled her in my arms, all sleepy and sweet. This year she decorated her own cupcakes with fondant icing. I have never used fondant icing before but with some tips from youtube, she and I decided to be brave and give it a try. Well who says cupcake decorations have to be perfect anyway? We had loads of fun to make up for the lack of expertise. The final products were superb, I think :). They really reflect a kid's creativity, from a kid to other kids:

And A and her friends had fun eating them all.

There was no father's day cake this time, but we presented Dad with little goodies and lots of love. So much it was impossible to fit them in the card we gave him!

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