Just casually checking in….. exams are over! I’ve turned 21! Immediately surprised by how exuberant I constantly sound on social media/here when I don’t feel like that in my head at all!
Here’s wishing you all a very belated happy new year – how are the new year’s resolutions this year going, dear reader? I’m going to share a bit more about my journey the past few months, how last year’s resolutions went, 2015’s resolutions, and what God has in store over the next few months.
One of the most significant moments of breakthrough in 2014 (and indeed, in my whole spiritual life) was at my church’s prayer and worship/Holy Spirit Encounter type event, called Empowered Night. So much happened, too much to share here, but here are some excerpts from an email I sent to close friends sharing what happened there.
“when this second wave (of the Holy Spirit) came and the speaker described how people might be feeling it I was like uh-oh that’s DEFINITELY me! He said it was a specific word, but lots of people went up, so he said it might be for the church, and I do sense that this church has this gifting quite strongly. I started to cry (was already crying a bit during worship) and then suddenly I was WEEPING and he talked about having compassion in our hearts, for this city, for London, an overflowing compassion. And I couldn’t control the weeping at all – he said it was like a symbol of how Jesus wept, and how much He loves this city. Felt the love God has for this world just pouring out on me. I’m just a jar of clay.”
“And while I was there, just soaking and being all ‘okay God, what now’, this lady comes up to pray for me. And she starts talking about how she sees all these muscles, (kinda apt as a medic I guess hahaha) and she really just senses strength! God is gonna strengthen me, give me strength. And she prayed for a fire in my heart, and got this sense of something special I was made for, and this restlessness she received which I feel too – I want now more, God, I want our adventure now! So it was just a confirmation of all these things I wasn’t aware I was thinking?”
“Then she started breaking lies the devil has told me and that’s where I really lost it! That’s something I’ve been struggling so much with, these past two weeks in particular, but I honestly didn’t go there tonight thinking that would be dealt with. Thought it was something I had to quietly deal with over time, while also desperately wanting that crazy breakthrough. And I also realised that I’ve been telling myself that the lies came from me, that I accepted them – all the while forgetting that satan is the liar and deceiver. She kept breaking it over me again and again, all the lies and bondage placed over me that’s holding me back. Insane.”
“God moved even in the really little things, like how people always forget my name, and at one point she hesitated a lot and called me daughter and a fleeting thought was ‘oh she confirm forgot my name already’ (sic hehe Singlish) and then she said ‘your daughter, N’ and it was God saying to me ‘I know you by name, you are mine’ just wow wow yeah. And she prayed for joy and it’s such an unspeakable joy that won’t go away. She said she’s so excited to see where God takes me and she knows it’ll be something big, and I got excited too! I know the journey isn’t over and won’t be smooth but honestly I received breakthrough tonight like I’ve not had in years. Really felt a shift in my spirit, in my mindset.”
It’s an email I’ve gone back to a few times now, to remember that God once moved so powerfully and mightily, and He’ll do it again. It’s just so great to remember the things the Lord has done for us in the past! Like that whole section in Hebrews that just talks about the wonderful things God has done and the honour roll of the faithful.
Psalm 77:11 (what a nice number!) – I will remember the works of the LORD: surely I will remember your wonders of old.
Psalm 143:5 – I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done.
That said, while I wish I could remain on that high and bask in it forever, I still had (and still do) have tough days, hard days, days where God feels distant or the light at the end of the tunnel seems unfathomably far away. Over Christmas break I had one such day – I was getting incredibly bummed out spending every night studying, instead of really, truly relaxing over this “holiday” period. I was getting frustrated with the workload, the content, obviously choosing to focus on the short term pain instead of the long term gain (read: i forgot that I actually want to be a doctor and that means learning all the theory first before getting to work with real people!.
Anyway, I was having an extremely bad day, dealing with that and really negative thoughts about pretty much EVERYTHING. Something (probably the Holy Spirit hahaha) prompted me to look through my journal (that is often like taking a trip down the rabbit hole. There’s nothing like reading through pages and pages of your past thoughts for entertainment.) so I randomly flipped it open and it fell to my entry written right when 2014 started. It laid out 10 resolutions that OBVIOUSLY had completely slipped my mind (I do tend to set resolutions and goals multiple times a year, like for the period of summer back home, or for the new academic year etc) and to my amazement I completed all of it, and all seriously through God. Even stupid things like ‘exercise vigorously once a week’. Even more amazingly, I had written (out of prayer and waiting on God) a few other things and had also promptly forgotten about this hahaha.
I feel a bit like this entry is too long and has no pictures to sustain people’s attentions so here have an excerpt straight out of my own journal.
(ps +12983874 points if you know which book that is) Uhm I also didn’t think it through and the picture is too blur so yes I wrote
THINGS I BELIEVE GOD IS DOING IN 2014
Leading me into deeper waters where my trust is without borders. Deeper relationships with the Trinity; deeper delving into the word, deeper healing. I believe God is restoring things to His Holy standard and to their heavenly destinies and purposes. I really want to do more with church/ministry… I believe God will imprint Himself on my identity more and reveal who I am. God, reveal my calling and Your purpose. Pour more love and passion.
The friend I quoted from my previous post (let’s just call him Frodo) said something like ‘WOW WOW so true’ and how he was so excited to hear about God’s healing in my life because it’s just going to lead me on to bigger and more exciting adventures. I mean, God really brought me to the end of myself (and He still is). I had to 1000% trust in Him because I couldn’t go on by myself. Yeah basically I could expound on each one of those things I wrote there but I am getting sleepy.
So, moving on from there. What do I believe God is doing in 2015?
First, a picture of a dog bc you are a star for reading this far.
(Dougie the shih tzu, the CUTEST dog alive whose instagram I stalk everyday while squealing and simultaneously whining about the fact that I DON’T HAVE A DOG)
Actually, have two: he’s so cute I couldn’t pick just one.
So right, back to what God is doing in 2015! He’s definitely going to do way WAY way more but here are three things I received while praying about this season.
Transformation, inside and out, heart and mind. He really jumped straight into this. I feel so free, so able to run towards Him with all that I’ve got.
That the above transformation will come through His truth. His truth that breaks every chain and replaces every lie. The Truth that sets us free.
Aside: a combination of points one and two is something I’ve been trying to press in on these first 2 weeks of January: renewing my mind to be like the mind of Christ. I’ve been writing down verses, memorising, taking thoughts captive, catching the negative thoughts. Repeated thoughts = habits (in short, of course. Neuroscience is coincidentally what I’m doing now hahaha). Knowing God’s truth in my heart and mind WILL bring about transformation.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 – Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Philipians 1:6 – For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
3) My last point was “taste and see that the Lord is good”
I tell ya I love the vagueness of this. IT CAN BE APPLIED TO EVERYTHING. Studies? Life? Friendships? Family? YAY.
And here are a few of 2015’s resolutions:
More evangelism, more community (make an effort!!), exercise more, pray and study the bible for an hour everyday, no complaining and comparing, try new things and challenge myself more, read 40 books, restore relationships, travel more, and consistently study as a form of worship.
So, how has 2015 been so far? It’s been good! Really good, actually. I’m getting to serve more in church and the other opportunities they give to serve this city. I’m feeling more comfortable in my connect group, and I’ve been more intentional in building relationships and deepening them. I’ve (somehow?!) exercised more in the last 2 weeks than I used to in 3 months back in College (yet I was skinnier then, why?!). I’ve been trying to go deep into the word by focusing on one or two verses a day and picking at them. Somehow even though as a lit student I could extrapolate and find enough points from one sentence to write a whole paragraph, my experience of reading the bible has always been ‘oh ok. Cool! That happened.’ or ‘waaaah beautiful turn of phrase’. I never understood why I couldn’t reaaaally dig deep into His word. But as usual, God grants the desires of my heart (when they are genuine desires most often to do with getting closer to Him/experiencing Him more. I’m still waiting on that desire for a dog). The bible has truly come alive and it’s like ARGH not enough time to read it and study it and breathe it in. And miraculously, I’ve been pretty consistent in my studying! Every morning I try to start my day with prayer. I pray (lol mostly for myself at first) over the day’s tasks, over the city, over family and friends etc etc. I’ve found the days where I declared focus and attention over myself for the following lectures, I’ve really been able to concentrate a lot more and understand. ^_^
I really should go now, but one last thing, is that I am so so so thankful to God for the strong female relationships He has placed in my life. I really really believe that women have so much in store for them, and we are meant to edify, encourage and help each other! Each and every single woman/girl/aunt/grandma etc in my life is truly an inspiration. I’ve got so much to learn from them all. (Hahaha my SSC essay this year is on the lack of female leadership in medicine (indeed, in ALL careers) (yes, all careers 😉 ) so I guess all my reading and research is getting my femme feelings worked up.)
And I thank God for all of you, who check here regularly. Comment more! I’d love to know who reads this 🙂 I really hope my words and honesty (???) encourage you or at the very least, entertain you hahahaha.
Be good eggs,