Adventures Wherever He leads.

Shanghai, Hong Kong, and beyond… immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine

Glimpses of hope September 26, 2014

Filed under: faith,life in HK — chinabean @ 5:12 pm

Cause I loved you before you knew it was love
And I saw it all, still I chose the cross
And you were the one that I was thinking of
When I rose from the grave

IMG_9322.JPG

More of the lyrics below:
You’re safe here with Me
There’s no need to cover
What I already see

You’ve got your reasons
But I hold your peace
You’ve been on lockdown
And I hold the key

‘Cause I loved you before you knew it was love
And I saw it all, still I chose the cross
And you were the one that I was thinking of
When I rose from the grave

 

God’s Role in suffering May 7, 2014

Filed under: faith,life in HK — chinabean @ 1:46 am

What an encouraging article on Miltinnie Yih’s son who has autism.

http://www.dts.edu/read/gods-role-in-my-sons-autism/

God’s Role in My Son’s Autism

by Miltinnie Yih on July 3, 2013 in Articles

As a follower of Christ, I find my deepest questions are about God’s role in our son David’s autism. When our pastor asked if David’s condition could be due to unconfessed sin in our lives, the cause shifted from the physical to the spiritual. Anxious to find the cause in order to find the cure, we examined ourselves, just in case. What would we not do to get David healed? If only it were as simple as making confessions or promises or bargains with God. “But is this really what it is about?” I wondered. “Is David’s autism a punishment from God for past sin?”

If God wanted to deal with me according to my sin, I deserved far worse. But God does not deal with us as we deserve, because while we were helpless, sinners, and enemies of God, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:6–10). Jesus received what I deserved, and I received what I did not deserve: blood-bought forgiveness. While we do suffer the consequences for our sins, suffering isn’t always the result of sin. God has reasons for allowing trials that we cannot fathom in this life.

Searching for Answers

Another Christian friend asked us if David might be under a curse. She informed me that a generational curse could be passed down from ancestors who might have dedicated future descendants to idols or cursed them by their own sins. She pointed me to the second of the Ten Commandments: “You shall not bow down to them [idols] or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me” (Exod. 20:5).

Her solution was to delve into the root of that sin, confess it on behalf of the ancestor, and receive forgiveness for it. Many people believe in generational curses and spend an enormous amount of energy on researching the possible sins of their ancestors. But, I thought, wouldn’t this fall into the same category as God’s giving David autism because of our sins, except that this was even more indirect and remote? As I pondered these possibilities, my eyes slipped down to the next verse: “but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments” (v. 6).

Would He who forgives my sins still hold ancestral sins against me? Salvation in one generation can change an entire lineage’s destiny from cursed to blessed. Our family already experienced this gracious reversal through our conversion to Christ.

When a famous healer who specialized in deliverance, or exorcism, came to town, people urged us to invite him to pray for David. Could David have a demon? If Satan was the cause, our son was under demonic dominion, requiring us to use every resource to deliver him. Parents in the Bible sought Jesus to deliver their children from demonic control. If we had the opportunity, we reasoned, shouldn’t we consider this as well? We invited this healer to pray for our son. Though nothing happened, the disconcerting thought that autism might be caused by a demon unearthed new questions.

Lessons from the Bible

At the heart of the problem lay the underlying questions: Who made this happen? Who is in charge? Was Satan the cause of this autism in my child, or was God responsible? These crucial questions determined the proper route to take in search of answers.

While demonic oppression is a reality in the world, if some other cause was behind our son’s autism, were we misdirecting our time and resources by trying to oppose Satan? What if God was behind it, and we were fighting God?

Job was a righteous man whom God gave Satan permission to strip of every blessing. Nevertheless, Job continually identified God as the one responsible for his suffering (Job 13:15). Never once did Job attribute responsibility to Satan, though Scripture clearly states that Job’s suffering came directly from Satan’s hands (2:3). But Job knew that God was in control of even Satan. And what Job believed is still true today. God is ultimately in control, so we focus on the Lord, fearing only Him (Luke 12:5).

In John 9, we read that Jesus’s disciples met a blind man, and asked Jesus, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?”

“Jesus answered, ‘It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him’” (John 9:2–3, NASB).

I began to look for how God would display His work in our son. I stopped asking “Why?” because I knew the answer to “Who?” God, not the devil, was and is in charge. God did not look away when our child was born. He did not make a mistake, nor was He punishing us. Nothing comes into a believer’s life without first coming through the hands of our loving heavenly Father.

Parenting by Faith

God gave David to us, and He will also give us everything we need to love and care for him. Yearning to know the “whys” of David’s autism is an unproductive line of thinking. Why did I want God to give me the reasons? Would they bring me satisfaction or simply put me in a position to judge God? Could I really understand the workings of God? Job continually asked, “Why?” to which God only answered by asking, “Who?” (Job 38:2–11).

The sooner we recognize that God is ultimately and fully sovereign, the sooner we can trust Him in our problems. Paul reminds us, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28).

By faith I believe that my child is not a burden, but a special gift from God. God is in control and has my best interests at heart. God did not give us this child to ruin our lives, for God promises to work all things for good. And though it is not always easy and we cannot always see “the good,” and though David is still autistic and mentally handicapped, yet by faith we trust that God is working all things for good. This is how David is not our tragedy, but God’s triumph—not a punishment, but God’s “good and perfect gift” (James 1:17). He’s still working.

 

Sovereign April 8, 2014

Filed under: faith — chinabean @ 10:09 am

Sovereign in the mountain air
Sovereign on the ocean floor
With me in the calm
With me in the storm

Sovereign in my greatest joy
Sovereign in my deepest cry
With me in the dark
With me at the dawn

::chorus::

In your everlasting arms
All the pieces of my life
From beginning to the end
I can trust you

In your never failing love
You work everything for good
God whatever comes my way
I will trust you

::bridge::

All my hopes
All I need
Held in your hands

All my life
All of me
Held in your hands

All my fears
All my dreams
Held in your hands

 

special needs woes March 14, 2014

Filed under: faith,Teaching — chinabean @ 3:14 am

There’s so many things that I don’t understand.

Special Needs is one of them.

I haven’t shared much about this with many. Most, if i’m honest actually. I think I am embarrassed and utterly humbled by the fact that I am at my end with them…

In joining ICA, one of the hardest things about my time here in addition to the many many difficult things I face is my special needs students.I have a class of 25 six year olds. 13 girls 12 boys.. 6 of which my boys have a special need. 2 autistic, 2 adhd, one aspergers and one kleinfelter syndrome + some EAL girls.

It’s hard. I face the frustrations, questions and feelings of I AM NOT A SPECIAL NEEDS TEACHER. I am not trained. I didn’t want to be one. I dont know what to do. I can barely handle my other 19 students… WHY GOD? WHY? WHY would you give me this lot? It’s more than I can handle.

God reminds me that, “It’s not for you to handle. It’s for me to use you to embrace and love and learn to love these kids, like I do.”

Through these past 7 months at my school here in HK, I’ve learned a lot… but still have so far to go.
Pray for me if you remember.It’s a hard journey to be on… but great is His love for me and them.

For with Him, nothing is impossible. nothing.

My friend, ST, shared a book, The Reason I Jump, by Naoki Higashida, with me recently that has made my heart break. This Japanese teenage author, who has autistic tendencies shared very poignant and honest responses to his teacher’s questions.

One of my favourites thus far: Question 22.

the reason i jump  Q22

may our hearts break for the things and people that break God’s heart more and more each day.

 

A tribute to Baby Janie August 23, 2013

Filed under: faith — chinabean @ 5:16 am

Baby Janie was so smiley and so lovely. She went to be with the Lord forever this afternoon.

Image

We love you and miss you, Janie!

God, Thank you for Janie’s life and that she is with you, Jesus, forever!

Dear Father God, please comfort Alan Gong and Daisy Chan Gong!

Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. John 16:22

http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/gong.

Last Entry from their blog:

Janie: “Why are there visitors here?”
Us (looking behind us): “There are no visitors Janie.”
Janie: “Why is there a feather?”
Us: “A feather?”
Janie: “White feathers.”

– A conversation with Janie the day before she went to be with God forever at 2:04pm, August 22, 2013

 

I have decided to follow Jesus August 14, 2013

Filed under: faith,life in HK — chinabean @ 1:45 pm

It’s one of those days that you think your life at some other stage would be better than right now… Then this song runs through your mind and heart… And you think… It’s gonna be worth it.

I have decided to follow Jesus
No turning back.

Though none go with me,
still I will follow.
No turning back.

The cross before me,
The world behind me.
No turning back.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in his wonderful face…

He who is greater then he who is in the world will carry me through.

 

Praise be to Gd! :) April 22, 2013

Filed under: faith,life in SH — chinabean @ 11:25 am

Truly TRULY amazed by our Gd.

His timing. His ways. His plans. His purpose. His relentlessnes.

He never gives up on us. never.

Romans 10: 9-13

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of alland richly blesses all who call on him,  for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Image

Happy Baptism Day, Lor! Praise be to Gd! 🙂