Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Year 2.17

Year 2.17 ended with nostalgia for Doris. On Monday I had lunch with leader D and wife lending support to him in his year old position. He is a confident, positive and caring person. The lunch at Lion was good. I can't wait to take coworkers there. I bought ten kunming roses for Doris, but they do not look sprightly.

Day 2 I received a big surprise. A manuscript I had sent two years ago for editing before Doris' loss arrived in the box. An editor had previously asked if I have written anything on  Kings or Chronicles because there is a lack of materials on that historical period. I  patched together 18 chapters but did not think much about it because it was not a priority for publisher or me. Even so two years is a long time but I am not fussy. Rather I am thankful I have three unpublished books with Doris in stock. In the morning I read a coworkers sermon and at night had men's fellowship, which had dropped in attendance now that school has started.

On Wednesday I received a positive reply from the book editor regarding copyright that galvanized me to work: 不同作者不同合作也有不同的, 而一些有年期一些冇年期. At this time in my life I want to free the books, not freeze it.

Day 4 After checking with the editor the previous day I worked on my morning off today and after work on the book till 1am checking minor odds and ends. It is a beauty, no doubt. My place was to finish it in two days.

On Friday I met with good USA friend Michael for lunch. Poor guy, he lost weight. Later I was so excited that I have finished working on the content part of the book with the morning off due noon work today. Also I checked on another coworkers sermon due this Sunday. Near evening I quickly send off the book to attend anniversary night celebrations.

Day 6 it was a busy day. Fellowship prestudy group had lunch followed by two hours of preparation and another hour of  fellowship study. Another good friend from USA came by for dinner, this time eating teochew hand having coffee and even buying clothes. I was pampered for a change and longed for old friends.

Sunday started on the right track. My coworker preached an outstanding sermon. AGM was an emotional affair for me. I could only think of Doris in my tearful outburst with the song 恩典够用 https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vYiodNJcFN4
at AGM. I also remember how proud and delighted Doris was of our coworkers the one year she attended when I was out of town.

September 19, 2017

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Year 2.16

Year 2.16 was filled with activities. On Monday I woke up at 840am, later than I have done for a long time. The ordination the night before took a lot more from me than I expected. At lunch I met up with Luen and Wallace at Kwai Fong S Life and had dessert at McDonald's. At night I had dinner with a new friend from USA and his wife. After dinner I remembered to go to the gym at night.

Day 2 was better but I still woke at 650am, later than my usual 630am. After my coworkers ordination I felt fresh the first day at work, as if a whole chapter has begun for me.

Wednesday was leaders meeting where a new division is approved probably with my involvement. I will think about what to do if and when it comes. My buddies attended with me.

Day 4 I have moved my hand treatment from Saturday morning to Thursday 5pm to accommodate the brother who does it. A pastor friend called me late at night. He was persuaded to leave his post (assistant department leader) to take a similar role in a new department. I encouraged him to leave but to retain his option to pick up or not his new responsibility.

On Friday the friend stated his position. Following my lead he asked for the opportunity to lead new branch in the future and his wife to join as staff. Miraculously his request was heeded. I also listened to a new coworkers message and realized I got to start afresh with new workers. One ordained but many more yet to work on, so no rest for me.

Day 6 My work day began with lunch for six people and department meeting. After the meeting ended another department rep brainstormed with me how to restructure his new work. It was a very good day for me as the pth fellowship completed the last 24th chapter of the book同作門徒. All have nothing but compliments for the book. At night my village neighbor treated my tennis elbow two days in a row.

Sunday was a tiring day with HK prayer and house gathering till 10pm. The host sang some opera songs for us and we join in for the few songs we know. I used Doris' tote bag to carry a T-shirt I can change to before heading to the family's house for the gathering.

September 12, 2017

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Year 2.15

Year 2.15 was bittersweet week. On Monday I met an old denomination friend and his wife for lunch. He suffered from cancer and has lost weight but thankfully he has years to live because the cancer is not an aggressive one. On my bus I heard a boy and his father bargain for an ocean park ticket in exchange for good grades and taking care of younger brother.

Day 2 was coworkers family day and I was assigned to yuen Long and we had a blast sharing till 5pm. At night I had dinner with Malaysian traveller and asked him to share gospel with my brother. At night I slept well for the first time this summer without turning on the AC unit.

On Wednesday night a bunch of us had dinner with our coworker T who returned from. USA. His wife will return later, resting from a successful cancer treatment. The dinner and dessert lasted three and a half hours. None wanted, but had to leave.

Day 4 I woke to a dream of a coworker informing me to beware of a leader who's been mocking my crying, very strange. On my morning day off I finally finished the whole forty chapter series book on Lent, of which I am very thankful I could complete what Doris had started. At the end of the day I got together with my neighbor family for dinner. The new school year begins for one of their two boys.

On Friday noon a USA classmate came by for a lunch visit. He is no longer in the pastoral ministry but goes to missions three times a year. I wish he could do both but he does not have heart for church ministry anymore.

Day 6 was a busy day with two fellowships. The prestudy was pleasant and relaxing. The night fellowship had sports, but I stayed for dinner with two members after taking a short nap. I also had to prepare a song for them the last minute for the ordination tomorrow.

My Sunday sermon was well received. I had to rest before the ordination, later the reception and then the dinner. At both dinner and reception I joined in singing. Finally my coworker Bon's ordination speech thanking me brought tears of joy to my heart as I  thought of Doris.我多謝給我机會發夢的葉福成牧师 因為他對我的信任 對我的教導 冇放棄 我不可以忘記 雖然好多人知道他過得不容易 但他在事奉上的坚持給我 返到教會再發夢 再多謝葉牧师.

Sept 4, 2017

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Year 2.14

Year 12.4 is a devastating typhoon Hato and Hurricane Harvey week. On Monday it was so hot that my invitation to walk outside Tsingyi mall was politely declined by my friend after lunch. The mainland friend dragged on about remarriage before aging sets in. At late noon a buddy gave me a bald cut before the monthly anniversary loss of Doris tomorrow.

Day 2 I put on my Hawaiian shirt Doris wore for her first post surgery body comfort. The special noon meeting with leaders was a long three hours with QnA. It was quite transparent and thorough although I was quite provoked with a coworker's habitual incessant out of turn talk. After that we had our own drinks talk.

On Wednesday the first  typhoon struck HK for a full work day. After lunch I enjoyed a nap because I have not had one lying down for a long time, not after lunch at least. I did writing in the morning at our block's lobby lounge. After lunch I watched an hour's online video. When more writing after the nap got nowhere I watched another hour before I got down to the pier shortly before the typhoon died down for a snack and a drink from a vending machine. I was surprised the vending machine offered hot food團飯. I sat on the only bench with some cover for one and a half hours to sample the drizzling rain and the blowing wind.

Day 4 I had lunch with a new friend and worked on an interns sermon. I also continued my sermon preparation on 2 Thess 1 that began this week. When my coworker knew that I had  Vietnamese food for lunch, he asked me take him for dinner at KF, even for dessert at McDonald's.

For Friday breakfast I met with a new believer who is in a spot over dividing family property. My advice is to deal with it positively, collectively and proactively. I am no expert nor wanted involvement. After lunch I helped a co-worker in her putonghua to get ready for her sermon on Sunday.

Day 6 I prayed for a couple at fellowship who are emigrating to Canada for the man's poor health reason. After night fellowship I asked a few for coffee, saying, There might be no worship tomorrow due typhoon. At least one considered my statement incredulous. At night I briefed my coworker how to use FB live if the typhoon comes tomorrow.

On Sunday I got up at 6 am and figured out the typhoon would last half day till noon, cancelling all worship but for our live FB worship that worked again. I slept and woke before 2pm to buy flowers for Doris and have tea with a USA friend, looking at his new quarters before buying BBQ to join a neighbor for dinner.

Aug 29, 2015

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Year 2.13

Year 2.13 was the occasion of my birthday week and with it memories of Doris. I finished what I thought was my last message to my Lent series entitled NO BETTER SACRIFICE (JOHN 10:11-18) but later found out there is one more must-have passage:
1. Be Acquainted with the Shepherd (11-13)
2. Be Added to the Saved (14-16)
3. Be Assured of the Safeguarding (17-18)
Before the morning ended I went to the gym for the first time to strengthen my weak biceps and thighs.

Day 2 was the eve of my birthday with a dinner planned at night. At 515pm the optometrist finally called me to say my uneven圆方glasses was ready. I picked up the 3k glasses for dinner with Doris' sisters and my friends. It was a wonderful dinner, something Doris previously insisted for me to have. This is almost my family in HK. Since the debut of my glasses I often have to answer why. My answer is that my life has been uneven (1) without Doris, (2) I am neither here nor there, not fully of Malaysia, USA or HK (3) and I gotta learn to draw square with left hand and circle with right the 周伯通 way because there is much workload. A deacon's spouse, however, asked, Can pastors wear those (my glasses)?

Wednesday was another eating and spending day. The morning began with early 7am breakfast with my neighbor Raymond 1 before my 830am 華福 devotion, followed by drinks with Raymond 2. Lunch was with a few coworkers and so was tea, and after that a few small cakes by lady coworkers, then dinner and another cake from interns. I counted six occasions. When pressed on my birthday wish, I answered,  同工同心. Best of all I bought myself Asus Zen Zoom that gave me 40 hours battery life with 10% battery life left. Tears welled up my eyes for Doris without a doubt today

Day 4 Lunch was with Calvin, a former college student I got to know in USA student. After lunch I bought mini roses for Doris. At night there was a wedding rehearsal for Saturday's wedding.

Friday morning was a staff meeting. I included a new item "health and help" for future regular staff meetings. Meeting ended with a birthday lunch. At midnoon was interns farewell sharing and at night I had dinner with Doris' sister and her husband before fellowship.

Day 6 2pm was wedding day, so I excused myself from two hours pre-prestudy and one hour prestudy. The wedding song *盟約*
 https://m.youtube.com/watch from Songs 8:6-7 (Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm...Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it) was hard on me, so I apologized blowing my nose before leading the couple to say their wedding vows. Surprisingly those present applauded. Later I joined two ladies for an early dinner.

Sunday morning was early breakfast with young B who got me a birthday present from Japan. I also met Glory and talked 20 minutes with him about current affairs. Next up was baptism. After joining youth fellowship for lunch and baptism candidates for pictures I left, taking a rest and doing laundry before dinner with a Malaysian traveller and an intern, walking from Shum shui Po to Mongkok to shed the weight after. Praise God E gave a good first sermon that day.  A also did well but I cried a tear knowing how neglected workers are.

August 16, 2017

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Year 2.12

Year 2.12 was a blessed week. On Monday morning I alerted others my disciple book was on sale for rmb$20 at taobao instead of it's HK$110 price. The response was hilarious. Some were furious, others were fine saying I am famous or others can benefit. At lunch with Doris' friends I asked her lawyer friend what guarantees do HK churches have if 一地兩檢 passed. The answer was none because law will be reinterpreted to governments wishes. Our churches must start diversifying her assets and properties.

Day 2 was men's fellowship. The attendance was encouraging, now at 13 studying Moses (Num 12), more young men than old. It was the fourth in our men series after Adam, Abraham and Jacob. 

Wednesday was the last of this year's preaching class. The coworkers wanted to study ot to complement nt study. They were good by now at grammar. Before class I spent half an hour to help E prepare to preach ten days later for the first time as a minister.

Day 4 I went to an optometrist to make an uneven pair of glasses. Rev Leung from Texas and I had dinner. I had ran out of schedule slots, but impromptu worked. He is always so considerate thinking of visiting me.

I woke to a dream of Doris on Friday, her gift to me less than a week to my birthday. In the dream I asked where was Doris when a small fire occurred in the small cottage across street where she was at that time. A member Michelle said she left by herself. When we met later she said she left because she had made an appointment with two girls who were bothered  by demon objects or voices. I started working on my CCOWE discipleship devotion. Unfortunately I stepped on my present pair of glasses before fellowship, so I wore an old pair that was out of focus.

Day 6 i decided to see if my glasses can be fixed because today was a wild day, attending a major concert, my first in HK, eight rows from front. Praise God it was fixed. A song 鐵塔凌雲 made me realized I am more local now.

On Sunday tears welled up every time the chorus was sung:
But I know whom I have believed
And am persuaded that He is able
To keep that which I've committed unto Him against that day.
At night I joined an intern for home made dinner, talking till 11pm.

Aug 15, 2017

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Year 2.11

Year 2.11 was one, of my fondest weeks, in which Monday was the best. For the first time I dreamed of Doris not once or twice, but thrice in a night. In the first dream she laughed, having solved a problem for all. I said, It'll be great to have a mind like yours. In the second dream she wanted to be the car driver but her sisters objected. In the third dream I turned around to pick her up after barely dropping her off at a dilapidated neighborhood which she insisted was ok, but I could not find her nor the right neighborhood later. At 3pm I met with old friend Ben to see if we want to the Old Testament Grammar Bible. We were willing to try on the Pentateuch and Psalms.

Day 2 was prayer and meeting day, but there  too much talking disrupted everything. I was still not making too much headway in sermon preparation but there is no pressing need because I have plenty in stock. At night I had dinner back at the island with a new overseas coworker.

Wednesday was a slow day. It has been like this on summer days with a lack of sermon assignments. Even my August date is cancelled. The preaching class after lunch was one of the best class with new coworkers and summer interns. They truly enjoyed the class, including the new coworker with two classes left. 

Day 4 Morning was my day off. I called a neighbor to enjoy buy one, free one coffee locally. In return I was given a small, pointed physio rubber ball by a neighbor to help me with my tennis elbow. At night met a missionary friend for dinner but he overslept from the jet lag. 

On Friday I had a short breakfast with a missionary, followed by a staff meeting and birthday lunch for a coworker. Our two interns joined us, adding new energy to the team. After lunch I gave an hour's interview to the missionary to complete his doctoral dissertation.

Day 6 After my hand treatment in the morning I got flowers in Prince Edward to get ready for home visits tomorrow from Doris' Vancouver friend and her USA sister. Two prestudy lessons were awaiting me, but I gave one hour to the newer coworkers, who did a commendable job.

On Sunday staff had lunch with a few volunteers who felt neglected. It went well, but complaints are complaints. At 3pm Doris' Kingston friends came by to pay respects to her with her favorite lilies, so did Doris' eldest sister from San Diego on her way to two months missions in Thailand. The family had dinner together in Sheung Wan at one of Doris' favorite restaurants, ordering Doris' beloved winter melon soup to end the day.

August 8, 2017

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Year 2.10

Year 2.10 Ten weeks into Doris' second year loss had already gotten underway. On Monday I went to Doris friend's office to get a certified copy of her will to complete another USA estate task. Her family on the USA side has been patiently doing all the paperwork for me. Lunch was with a buddy, who is a big flower guy. Besides lilies for Doris, he also bought a dozen roses for himself. One bunch was more than enough for me. At 5pm I sat more than an hour and a half at the pier bench to remember the love of Doris for the spot.

Day 2 was a busy day. A departing USA friend wanted to have breakfast together, followed by September sermon group at 11am on Matt 7, and more meeting at 2pm. Dinner was with neighbor and son over spaghetti , with prayer walk for compensation.

On Wednesday I sent the estate papers, hopefully the last I have to file. Shortly before I left office I was told my on and off language work offer is on again with some explanation given. I had no feelings for it. The night ended with the culmination of the Lent series as I finished the last sermon, on Mary Magdalene entitled THE FAIREST OF THEM ALL JOHN 20):
1. Be Poised to Persist (vv 11-13)
2. Be Prepared to Persuade (vv 14-15)
3. Be Passionate to Proclaim (vv 16-18)

Day 4 I prayed that I did not have to lead the language work. The morning was with friend Justin over a cup of coffee after our failed Habitu breakfast. It was a good break for me on Thursday after the Lent series. If not most Thursday mornings I work on sermons. At night I met with Doris' Kingston friends for dinner because a Canadian alum was in HK. The Singapore food at Mira was ordinary.

Friday was an unmotivated day, so I did my sermon preparation café style at the pantry. Surpringly I did quite well even with a lot of foot traffic. There was a break  from fellowship at night, so I left early for prayer walk.

Day 6 was lunch with couples staff. It was all good until controversial subjects surfaced. Late noon was spent with buddy at the fruit market. My under pressure friend lightened up at the sight of various fruits. We had dinner together before I left.

Sundays song 耶穌我愛你 https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=G6XewDvplVc
really touched me with its lyrics: 我一生要尋求祢 and 我願意一生不要離開你. After worship a senior lady wanted to recommend a lady to me with her photo on her we chat app! Later I enjoyed the singing talent show at church. I retire to bed early because of the sweltering heat.

August 1, 2017

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Year 2.9

Year 2.9 was far better than the uneasy previous week. On Monday a friend 關 and I took Paul Lai and wife to 黃石碼頭 and Geopark, a place few locals knew about. On the day when it was raining like no tomorrow I was grateful to see sunshine twice, at Sai Kung for breakfast and after the 黃石碼頭 boat trip. We scraped afternoon plans because of the downpour and went to Kwan's place for high tea. Without him the day was wasted. Early dinner was with a buddy ruminating over work tensions.

Day 2 morning was with Paul and wife again but this time with pastor. The rest of the day was study, meeting and chat. The tensions were lowered but shimmering below the surface.

Wednesday was a packed day. I went through with a coworker his sermon coming Sunday, followed by preaching class after lunch. As soon as class was over, I visited the funeral parlor to pay respects to a group leader's mother. At night meeting I asked "Did all parties know," but was checked by a neutral "We work very closely" answer. On the way home a disgruntled person texted I was unfair to him, so we set up a meeting tomorrow.

Day 4 was a busy day. The morning study on John 20 made little headway. I was invited by interns for lunch and waited for my crunch talk at 3pm. It turned out to be a friendly and brotherly talk. I can only offer to pray for him daily as we settled matters. Next I talked to a grad who decided his calling is at TST. At night I treated a neighbor friend and his boy to homemade spaghetti.

Friday meetings began with pth staff. We are a very cohesive bunch, so the meeting was an hour short. After lunch I had a haircut from a coworker to remember Doris' loss one year two months the next day and then began in earnest for night devotion on Acts 4:32. Praise God it touched hearts and the day was over with prayer walk.

Day 6 was hand treatment followed by couples staff lunch. We are really gelling together for service. The afternoon was blurry and the night ended with splitting time between two pth couples groups.

Sunday was a shocker. There was a crowd waiting for the supermarket to open. A typhoon warning was in effect when I was swimming. I returned home to more than one hundred messages on coworkers chat group. All worship meetings were cancelled. On the pth side a young adult moaned, “Why in this hi-tech world can't we broadcast worship?” I asked a coworker if it was possible to do Facebook live. When he said yes I hurried to church before the weather was in effect. At church I bought breakfast for two, opened a departed coworker guitar case to practice and look for suitable songs to lead. In the meantime my coworker and speaker that day got  Facebook live ready. At 11am I led worship songs, my coworker spoke and the worship ended with Lord's Prayer. All applauded our effort. At night I had dinner with neighbor and son because I got home earlier than usual over cancelled activities. 

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.

July 25, 2017

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Year 2.8

Year 2.8 ended with a big relief. On Monday I met last minute with a leader to talk more about his recent retirement, vacation and leadership experience near where I got flowers for Doris that day. It was so hard to find time to get together except on my day off but I have appointments the next two Mondays.

Day 2 I finally finished my second last sermon to my Lent series entitled WHO'S IN CHARGE? ( MATT 26:57-68)
1. Defend Yourself Without Apology or Arguing (57-61)
2. Disclose Yourself Without Ambiguity or Arrogance (62-64)
3. Dignify Yourself Without Animosity or Anger (65-68)
My couples team had lunch with an intern and her friend. Noon meeting did not reap much. At night we had men's fellowship, where we have 12 men studying on Jacob. For the first time the younger ones outnumbered the adults.

On Wednesday I woke to a dream of buying something from a convenience store and losing my small cart along the way, tricked by vendors who persuaded me to accept a laundry basket in exchange. The worst part was that when I realized Doris was alone at home, I remembered Doris had passed away. I also had slight coughing. My preaching class was a breakthrough. At least the students could speak in bits and pieces. At night I found a popular cable drama series with bahasa subtitles.

Day 4 collective meeting was frank, direct and tensed. Many were given opportunities to say or write their opinion. I had to reschedule a seminarian appointment because of the four hour long meeting. At night I bought dinner for an USA friend who brought me a DTS T-shirt.

Friday was a busy day with pth meeting before lunc with seminarians. Later in the afternoon we had a two hour 預prestudy due the busy day tomorrow. I was so tired after the meeting that I slept, waking 15 minutes late for dinner with sister in-law before fellowship.

Day 6 The town hall turnout won over a lot of folks. The explanations were generally acceptable. The gaps were narrowed. The response from pth was good. After a drink I joined fellowship.

Sunday was a good day. Paul Lai blessed us with a wondrous message and later I attended a small group to support a leader who gave much of his service to the church. By the time I got home I was so tired that I napped half hour before dinner.

July 18, 2017