Sermon Reflections: Preparing the Way

Image credit: Unsplash.com

It has been a while since I’ve done one of these. Looking back, it’s actually been an entire 6mo. I’ve had this one half complete for that long, and I’m trying to figure out why. It may just be a case of laziness, but more so I think it’s a degree of pressure I’ve given myself by putting a specific format on these reflections that has cornered me into doing it a certain way.

It also meant that I spent 3-4hrs per session, carefully going through all my notes and adding new notes as I listened to the sermon again, then crafting out a response for my blog reflections. Unsurprisingly, it turned into a bit of a chore. So, I wonder if I change up the format, would it help?

It’s a new year, so let me see how it goes. Thanks for your patience in bearing with me as I figure this out, and may it be led by His Spirit, as I desire to spend more time in His Word and internalising what I have heard, according to the will of God.

These are now genuinely going to be some immediate reflections as I listen (back) on sermons from CBCWLA. It’s a brain-dump and won’t necessarily be cohesive or coherent, most certainly won’t be exhaustive of all important parts, but will be personal to me.

Here are the questions I’ll attempt to answer with each sermon I review:

  1. What sermon did I listen to today? Title/Link.
  2. Summarise the key points in 1-2 sentences.
  3. What stuck out to me, listening to it this time?
  4. How can I respond to this truth? What practical applications can I take from it?

1. What sermon did I listen to? Title/Link.

Preparing the Way – p. Nick Hsieh. Passage: Mark 1:1-13.

2. What were the key points of this sermon?

Per the sermon notes:
The way for Jesus is prepared through a high view of God and of his Christ. The humility of Jesus as the suffering servant is seen in his baptism and testing. Identify with Jesus Christ by drawing near to God’s throne of grace in humble confidence.

Read More

Monthly Resolution: Check In #2

Image credit: Unsplash.com

It’s been another week since I decided that I’d start doing mini-resolutions every month and aim to read Romans 8 once per day in January. From 10th – 16th January, I have read it every day, usually first thing in the morning, or at least before lunch. It’s been great to start my day in God’s Word, especially in the book of Romans.

I have found myself committing more of it to memory just naturally and have even tried to simply recite parts of it. This week I started to read it with verse numbers to help me with remembering it. Currently, as long as I get the starting words of the next verse, I can pretty much recite the entire verse.

It’s easier to remember what comes next if I memorise it based on the verse itself so we’ll see how I get on in the following week. However, I’m confident that if I set aside even just one hour at the end of this month, I’ll be able to memorise it all, if I haven’t more or less memorised it already :)

This is great! I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but if I am able to memorise the whole of Romans 8 by the end of the month I’d like to aim for Romans 12 next, God willing.

Blessings,

Crystina

Monthly Resolution: Check In #1

Image credit: Unsplash.com

It’s been a week since I decided that I’d start doing mini-resolutions every month and aim to read Romans 8 once per day in January. So, it makes sense for me to do a mini check-in every now and again during the month to track how I’m doing.

From 3rd – 9th January, I have read it every day except on the 7th. I was planning to read it before bed but after writing my blog post that day I got too tired and fell asleep (though I found myself reciting parts of it in my head as I was lying in bed before I slept heh). Thereafter, I decided that it would be best for me to read first thing in the morning after I wake up, rather than trying to find time during the day or reading it before bed.

This week I suddenly found myself working again so I had less spare time / brain power throughout the day as well, so aiming to read as soon as possible after waking will probably remain best. I did manage to read in the morning yesterday and noticed a big difference in my actual processing and absorption of the text.

There are definitely passages that are starting to stick in my mind – even if not word for word, I know the general gist of most of it by now. I’m pretty sure that if I do continue to read it daily, at one point I would have read it enough to memorise it. Let’s see how long it takes :)

Blessings,

Crystina

Personal: A New Season

Image credit: Unsplash.com

Sometimes, things happen and I am just… in awe. The way that God continues to lead me is just beyond my wildest imaginations. After my previous job and wedding planning, I was entirely burnt out and in need of a long season of rest. I wasn’t even sure when I’d be ready to start going again, or even what I wanted to do, but it seems like that season of rest has suddenly come to a close without me even trying… and it looks like I’m ready.

I’ve always held the mentality that, “If God wants me to have a job, He’ll drop one into my lap.” My parents didn’t take well to that one when I was in my final year of University with no job offer lined up… but by the time I was graduating I was in the middle of an internship-turning-full-time-opportunity with an offer from another company on the table, both of which had found me.

The most incredible thing is, despite having applied for quite a few jobs the second time round, again I ended up accepting an offer from a company that had found me. Not to mention, getting consulting opportunities from companies that, again, found me.

And now, as of yesterday, I have officially started helping out another company in a role that I never searched for. (My sister’s about to graduate and when I asked about her job hunt, my parents are now like, “Yeah God will give her a job if He wants.” LOL.)

I’m not saying that being a Christian means God promises a job – not by any means, please don’t get me wrong. But it does mean that I have a lot less stress or anxiety from a search than what I hear the majority of people have.

Read More

2020 Reflections: There’s So Much Beauty Here

Image credit: Unsplash.com

It’s been a really difficult year, I know, for so many people. But for me, looking back on 2020, I have nothing but gratitude. There has been a lot that has gone wrong, but focusing on the negative and dwelling on the disappointments will not change the outcome and might only cause me to fall into despair. So, instead, I just want to take time to give thanks for the year that we’ve had.

During Sunday School, our pastor gave us a few prompts to consider and reflect upon. We were encouraged to come up with 1-3 top things for each. I enjoyed this activity a lot, feel free to try it for yourself as well! :)

What are some things you celebrated or found joy in this year?

  1. My wedding!
  2. Exercising and improving my health/time of rest
  3. Extended honeymoon period/spending a lot more time with hubs due to Jacky working from home

What are some significant things you learned or ways you grew?

  1. I really lack self-discipline and that is one of the major ways I’d like to grow in
  2. Not take basic necessities for granted – i.e. toilet paper, milk, eggs, canned foods
Read More