February Resolution: Check In #1

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I decided to read Romans 12 after all :) It’s a shorter chapter than 8, so it works out well that I have fewer days to read it in for memorisation. I did my reading of it 4 times this week: I did not read on Friday and Sunday as previously decided, but unfortunately also missed reading it on Tuesday.

It was my bad for not prioritising it. It is a wonderful chapter that I am not as familiar with as I’d like to be, so I’m glad I have a chance to read it more this month.

This week I managed to get a lot of my to-do list complete, which I’m thanking God for. But I do notice that a lot of my faith-related to-do’s (i.e. record and upload, reading, evangelism) remain incomplete. There are some reasons for this – most relate to being really tired and working more, but I really could have gotten them done if I wanted to. It shouldn’t be a comparison, but a lot of personal things that I wanted to do were also neglected due to lack of time or energy.

That said, Jacky and I discussed some of the things that were eating into my time that was also causing me to become more tired than usual, and we’ve already made changes to combat this, for which I am very grateful.

Next week, I shall make it a priority, as it should be.

Blessings,

Crystina

January Resolution: Check In #4

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It is the end of January and thus the final of my January check-ins. My January mini-resolution was to read Romans 8 once per day. This check-in will be for the 25th – 31st January. Goodness, this month flew by, didn’t it?

I didn’t read daily this week – actually I skipped 3 days: Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. I’m not sure why I skipped Wednesday, but Friday we did have Bible Study, and Saturday honestly I have no excuse – we didn’t even have our usual Bible Study with my family because I woke up so late and exhausted. But to be honest, I don’t have an excuse for skipping my reading on any of those days.

I noticed this week that I was no longer as serious about reading it as I had been before. Perhaps it’s because I’d seen the same text day after day that I’d begun to get bored? Or, at least, the words weren’t sinking in properly anymore. Reading the passage daily almost became a chore.

However, today, after taking a couple days’ break from reading, I really enjoyed reading it again. In fact, I realised that I’d been able to recite more of the passage than I had before, and was able to commit more to memory than I had done in the past as well.

Perhaps with anything else in life: there are days when you need a bit of a break before getting back into it with more vigour. The Word of God should never be taken that way, of course; I am not saying it’s a good idea to take days off from spending time with God in devotion, meditation on the Word and prayer.

But since this is a specific resolution to read the same passage daily, perhaps it does help to give my brain some rest so it can retain some of what it’s read and not get tired of the repetition.

For February, I still haven’t quite figured out what I’d like to read. I haven’t sat down to devote time to memorise Romans 8 fully, though I can recite 80% of it by now. Still, I think I would like to put it aside for a little while and then come back to it.

Shall I move on to Romans 12? Or perhaps one of the Psalms… I’ll pray about it a little more, and will put up a new update post once I decide. I will, however, take 2 days’ rest per week from reading the passage: Fridays (fellowship) and Sundays (sabbath), to hopefully allow more time for the passage to sink in to my brain and avoid repetition fatigue.

Blessings,

Crystina

January Resolution: Check In #3

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I wanted to post this on Saturday, then Sunday… but it’s been a while since I’ve had such a busy weekend. Time really does start to fly when you start working again heh. That said, I guess it is rather appropriate for me to put up this update today, since there are still 7 days left of this mini-resolution from today. This update will be for the past 8 days: from 17th – 24th January.

My January mini-resolution was to read Romans 8 once per day. I admit it wasn’t as easy during this period. There were days I started my day with my reading, but also days where I slid it in right before I slept. Last night, I was so exhausted (and unwell) I resorted to listening to it read via my Bible app while trying to follow along according to memory.

Jacky tested me on it one evening and I realised there’s still a lot that I don’t remember in terms of how the verses come together and specific words that were used. I realise that in ancient Middle-Eastern culture, they would not have been required to quote verbatim, but it’s still my aim to quote it according to ESV.

I still think that it will be entirely possible for me to spend a few hours at the end of the month and have it committed to memory. I’ll keep you posted!

Blessings,

Crystina

Sermon Reflections: Preparing the Way

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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.

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January Resolution: Check In #2

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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