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Single Life Homework

This morning, as I was walking into the school building, a colleague reminded me about a meeting to which I had been invited without context.  I asked this colleague for some context for my surprise invitation to this meeting from a learning management system provider, and she called me "a programmer" and "technical." I replied that I was not a programmer and I was not "technical." I am an investigator and a researcher, and my conclusion about our school's many system implementation problems is that we operate with weak and ambiguous policies, a statement to which she agreed. To this colleague, I experienced no problem in saying no to her labeling to me.

However, this morning and yesterday, I am experiencing difficulty denying myself from doing another person's work, specifically, the vice-principal's work. The vice principals and I met yesterday to decide on some routines to develop our information system and our report cards. The vice princi…
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Single Life Accountability and Breakthrough

I have gone on a healing journey these two weeks: God has revealed to me the extent to which my thesis experience has damaged my inner man over the past four years; and how my work experience has damaged me this year. 
God provides an image of an open casket in which my shame has been placed: I must acknowledge it exists; it is lifeless; it is set apart from me. 
God has used nonbelievers in the past 24 hours to bring honor and healing into my life.
My colleague and her husband have taught first themselves and now me to say "Be kind to…" When we feel shame. This reminds me of the "pain! pain! pain!" strategy in Daring Greatly. 
Last night, God used my training partner to demonstrate one of the great acts of mercy, grace and honor in my life, while I was drunk, no less: my partner offered to read and to review my thesis, for free!
And my seven years, no one has ever volunteered themselves to help me in this way; these months, I've only found paid help at $300 a…

Shaming

Three outsize shame variables this year are my thesis, my job duties at work, and most broadly and ominously, my society, since the people in my school and involved in my thesis come from our mainstream society.

I had already written about my prolonged thesis journey being a source of shame and now I realize people's well-intentioned questions about "next steps" are subtly shaming and definitely not caring about me in a way that I can understand: next steps are performance comments when I tell everyone that I haven't demonstrated being able to plan my life for the past three years, I cannot change my mind well to realize this is merely humiliating and not shaming me. What would really help me is explicit offers to help me in any way, and that offer opens the other person up, and makes them vulnerable! How rare is this in a shaming society! Even how rare is this in the church!

The nature of my work, to be the face for information systems and these days, accurate data…

Shame

Shame is a death spiral. It is a black hole. It is a crocodile death roll. It is a whirlpool. It is a failure history. It is a carousel, spinning endlessly round and round.

And my life has been spiraling out from shame, a circular route with stops at hunger, anger and aggression, loneliness and lust, and exhaustion. It also stops at knowledge which puffs up, be it objectivism or subjectivism, positivism or interpretivism.

I realize my prolonged thesis journey has been deeply shaming and deeply damaging to my inner man, and I think this damage has increased since 2014, when I was originally scheduled to submit my thesis. Unsurprisingly, I believe the power and presence of God has also increased in my life since 2014.

While I'll always struggle with shame in this world, my temptation is to believe I'll never recover from the shame from this journey. I don't know if and how honor and elevation can co-exist with shame.

Father is speaking to me lots and in new ways by His Spir…

Single Life Homework

Thank God that the woman I was going to take to church today called in sick. She perhaps experience the same cold that I did. Well, she didn't pass the church test. 
I did ask another bagel, my former church sister, to dinner sometime this week. Catching up with her would be a blessing, not least to praise God for her growth, and mine, and our renewed friendship.
(ON and I met for cake last night at her home and workplace. She and I were time flexible, thank God. We were also open and vulnerable with each other, so that I could listen and understand her growing in Christ in her new church; and  God would use her to inspire me to consider her church; that she could receive my acts of service and words of affirmation well; and we could stare deeply into each other's eyes; that I would confess my thesis shame to her and she would offer to read my thesis too! She and I know her mother shaming, and her public speaking fear. We know she likes fries, and is unfamiliar with sweet po…

The Move

I am moving house for the final time in Hong Kong, I expect, and God has answered my prayers. Praise God. He is good and faithful no matter my circumstances.
I am moving to the most convenient place in my Hong Kong life, Causeway Bay. I had never moved to such a central location, and realized why it was central, since I do work in Tai Po, ministry in Tuen Mun and life in Happy Valley, Aberdeen, HKU and Central; at the same time, I had overcome my stinginess to pay $6,500 for a room -- the most I have paid in monthly rent in HK; I had only recently lived in LOHAS park, endured murderous commutes , and learned that $6,000 was very reasonable rent given the opportunity to reduce commute times everywhere, drastically. $6,500 seems to be extremely reasonable in Causeway.
God planted me in another family. A man, and a wife, and the child. A mixed race family, between Ireland and Indonesia. The child speaks Cantonese, which the parents do not speak, and attends the prestigious and in my heart …

A&E

I woke up at 00:30 with red, swollen, tender, irritated and possibly infected eyes.
I could no longer sleep, so painful we're closing my eyes that I walked to the hospital. Thank God, I had moved and could walk to the hospital.
Last night, I had worn contacts that were likely dirty and expired. I had thought I had lost this pair of contacts and had switched to a new pair. However, when I found the case on the floor by my chair in the office, today, I eagerly picked them up them up to reuse them!
Other changed variables tonight: first time in the new flat; sleeping with fan and air conditioner on my face; a home cooked dinner from the generous, landlord's wife; and new water on my face and in my body; a typhoon 8! In general, I was very stressed and not rested today. In the evening, I had wanted to run, hence the contacts, but stayed in to work on my thesis instead.
After this morning's emergency room adventure and suffering and eye infection, I realize I have to take better ca…