Thursday, January 31, 2008

God is Good.

This has been one insane week!! Monday I found out that I will have MORE classes added to my already jam-packed schedule. That brings me to a work schedule that looks like this:

Mon-Fri 8:50 am - 12 (teach); 12-2:30 Lunch and planning/grading; 2:30-4:40 (teach)
Mon: 4:55-6:30 teach
Tues: 4:55-8pm teach
Wed: 4:55-8:10 teach
Thurs: 4:55-8:10 teach
Friday: 5:40-7:25 teach

Ahhh!! Insane craziness!!!

Tuesday, I ended up going to bed late. Last night, my bank called me at 4AM!!! And now, I just got home from work at 10PM on Thursday...
Tomorrow, we have a field trip and then I have to work at night. I'll get home about 8:30pm...I leave for the airport on Saturday at 5AM for China!!! I need Jesus!!!

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. I've come to this place of complete contentment with the way things are...where I am, what I'm doing, where I'm going,'s such an amazing thing! I've finally gotten over this feeling of loneliness...I've had breakthrough with those panic attacks (I haven't had one in over a month)!!

You might ask, "What has caused these changes?" Well, it's nothing that I've done. It's all God. The only thing that I've done is be obedient to His Word.

As you read the Word and do what it says, you'll see changes, too. But remember, it's not because of you...It's all because of our Lord! All glory goes to Him for it.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Friendship Week

This week is friendship week. We made friendship rainbows using the children's hands. My Rainbow class wanted purple after the green...then blue. As a result, when I looked up at theirs while doing Smiles', I put purple before blue! So, yes, I do know that it's ROY G BIV and that blue comes before indigo and violet (purple) in the rainbow. :)


I received a really positive email from a representative at Missions for Unreached Peoples. She told me about the opportunities in Poland and Russia. She also mentioned that I might be interested in Albania...why? Well, because they need a

She didn't send a wealth of information about it because she wasn't sure if I was interested...I told her to send it!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Three Days Until China

I finally got my ticket and visa last night. People have been telling me how cold it is there and someone told me that the Great Wall is dangerous to walk on with sneakers, especially in winter. So, I purchased my first pair of hiking/waterproof shoes. I'm excited about them.

China has lots of snow this time of year! Yippppeeeeeeee!

It Continues to Get Worse

Gunmen kill Kenyan opposition lawmaker

...“We wish to find one, a Kikuyu. ... We will butcher them like a cow,” said David Babgy, 24, who was among 50 young men stopping buses at a roadblock of burned cars and uprooted lamp posts....

City known for flowers becomes a war zone
Naivasha, Kenya’s flower-exporting capital on a freshwater lake inhabited by pink flamingoes, became a war zone Monday where some 2,000 people from rival ethnic groups faced off, taunting each other with machetes and clubs inset with nails.

Each time they approached each other, a handful of police holding a line between them fired live bullets into the air. They retreated, only to regroup.

“We want peace, but we (also) want to fight them,” said Peter Mwangi, 20. “We don’t want Luos here,” he said.

“This is Kikuyu land!” they cried, calling for revenge.

State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Kenya has “gone from bad to worse, in terms of the violence.”

Monday, January 28, 2008

Kenya Update

My former pastor's wife who has contact with the Pallangyo family wrote an email to me about the situation and is as follows

It is a situation gone mad, enflamed by the demonic spirits of violence and revenge. Yes, Naivasha is one of the areas currently in the midst. There are many displaced persons in Jeremiah’s church compound, but no place is safe in the town. Our young friend, Jeremiah’s assistant and his wife and 6 month old baby boy had there home burned around them last night. They miraculously managed to escape and called us in shock from the police station on their cell phone. It isn’t safe there either. She is Kikuyu and he is not. Right now mixed marriages are being seen as treasonous by the tribes. The police aren’t really doing much to help because they are afraid, too. Jeremiah is in Nairobi as part of an attempt by Bishops to help in some way to mediate. Mama is still in N. I am concerned for her safety and the orphans. Prayer is the best thing right now. Thank you for joining with us and the Church for the family there. I have never heard Jeremiah shaken so. It is indeed a land in chaos at the moment and that is so scary.

Please, please, please, keep this family, who is so dear to my heart, these people and this land in prayer. I know that God is sovereign over all. May it all be to His glory.

Pastor Jeremiah, his wife, Beth and their kids.
Pastor and some of the orphans.

Immediate Prayer/Naivasha, Kenya

Some of you may have heard of the current situation in Kenya. Kenya is dear to my heart (it was one place I was considering to move to last year). I know a dear pastor and family who live there, Pastor Jeremiah Pallangyo of Garden of Eden Ministries in Naivasha, Kenya. Please keep them and this country in prayer.

Violence Spreads in Kenya, Killing 19 in Fire

In Desperate Need of Help/Walk for Life 2008

I've been involved with (the English Converstion outreach portion) a ministry in Tainan City. The ministry is called Ray of Hope and they minister to unwed pregnant woman. They help the moms through the adoption process as opposed to abortion. In Taiwan, a country with 22 million people, there are nearly 500,000 abortions a year.
Coupled with that is the ever increasing problem of sexual abuse. Every 27 minutes in Taiwan, a child is sexually abused. Girls in 5th and 6th grades are getting pregnant. Do you think the families are keeping the babies? No, they're aborting the babies.

Taiwan is faced with these issues, but yet, won't talk about them in order to save "face." The mayor of Tainan City said that the two biggest problems the city faces are robbery and sexual abuse. He, himself, admitted that he doesn't know what to do about them. Ray of Hope is holding a walk to create awareness for sexual abuse and to pressure the government to incorportate prevention classes in the public schools, in which children would learn how to protect themselves from sexual abuse, rather than just learning how to use a condom (as that is what is taught in public schools).

Ray of Hope needs your help. If you are in Taiwan, please come walk with us on February 16, 2008. Information can be found at the blog Ray of Hope/Walk for Life 2008 . If you're in the States or Canada, please consider making a donation. The organization does NOT get government funding because it's a Christian organization. Funding is so limited and they are still in need of approximately $2,500 USD.

Please watch this video and visit their blog. If you'd like to make a tax deductable donation, they can be sent to the following address:

US: Jesus is Alive
c/o Les and Ellen Bergman
3700 214th St. SW
Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043

Canada: Ray of Hope
P.O. Box 1887
Calgary, Alberta T2P 2L8

Sunday, January 27, 2008


I just got off the phone with my mom and asked her if she'd support me (all I was looking for was encouragment as she always tells me to just leave Taiwan and move back home) if I went to Europe for MISSIONS. I told her if I went to Europe for missions that it would be difficult to constantly hear the "come home" speech. She said she would support that decision and that she might help me with some student loans!!! I told her the motivation is missions (which she is always against). Yeah, God!!

Missions to Unreached Peoples

I've sent in an application. I'm praying about it. I'm interested in Russia, Poland, Kazakhstan, and Hungary. I can go as a certified teacher. I know that education is my key to the nations. Please keep this in prayer.

Missions to Unreached Peoples

Saturday, January 26, 2008

His Response Said It All/Why the Modern Gospel Message Doesn't Work

I went to a meeting yesterday and a few of us shared our testimonies on how we became Christians. The testamonies sounded similiar: no one loved us, but some Christians showed us love because God loved them, so we can accept God because He loves us. (And I'm not criticizing their testimonies, not at all). Mine differs in the fact that just flat out HATED God and was openly rebellious against Him. I did have a traumic experience in which I asked God to reveal Himself, which he did.

During the meeting, I asked a young man what he thinks he will happen when he dies. His reply was "that's too serious of a question. I'm too young to think about it. I don't want to think about it." (This is not the first time I've heard this in Taiwan. The same thing was said by the 5 men I witnessed to in the bar at the beginning of the month).

I told him we're not promised tomorrow, and others said that bad things can happen to young people. I chimined with telling him of the deaths of two actors: 25 and 28 (They are the same age as the young man).

Afterwards, I started giving him the Gospel message. He said,

"Well, all of you had problems in your lives and needed something. I don't, so I don't need to think about this now."

I continued to warn him about impending judgement and that he really should be concerned. I gave him a tract and just simply asked him to think about these things.

Later that night, I thought about what happened and what was said. When we present an incomplete, wishy-washy Gospel, this is what you get, "I don't have problems, so I don't need God." It's repentence and faith, so that Jesus becomes the focus and not our needs. Yes, God will supply all our needs, heal us, make us whole, but this is not the motive for becoming a Christian. If this is the motive, it's selfish and not a true conversion!

The focus is Jesus. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus.

My testimony should be one that glorifies Jesus and not about me, me, me.

New Rule

If you leave an anonymous post, you must leave at the very least your first name. Common curtosy, people. Anything left without a name (except from my mom and students because I know you all so well...) won't get posted.

Peace y'all.

Friday, January 25, 2008

A Story of Islam and a New York State Public Schoo/Separation of Church and Statel

When I was 20, I student taught in Upstate New York at two different schools. My second school was in a rural area. At the time I began my placement, the students were studying world religions. The teacher had students work in groups to research various religions (only one group out of every class was assigned Christianity, there were multiple groups in each class reporting on Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Confuciusm, which by the way, isn't even a religion! I was told the the teacher decided this representation).

Anyway, one of the student groups decided they would demonstrate how to pray to allah. The teacher then instructed the class to follow the group's instructions. She did as well. I had five Christian students look at me in horror. They didn't want to do it. I told them not to do it, if they didn't want to. I, for one, was not going to pretend to pray to allah.

The teacher told me I needed to respect the students and Islam and participate in the demonstration. I refused.

Guess who got in trouble. ME!
Not only did I get in trouble for telling professing Christian students they didn't have to do something they didn't want, but I got in trouble because I stood up for what I believe.

Christians are persecuted for what they believe because people HATE God. It has nothing to do with separation of church and state. NOTHING. They HATE God.

Let's take a brief look at separation of church and state:

The First Amendment simply states:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

However, the court system has reinterpreted this as a "law" which supposedly dictates the separation of church and state.
In fact, the first amendment only applies to CONGRESS! Congress shall make no law respecting...Religious matters were left to the individual States. The Supreme Court began to ignore all historical precedents and decided that the Bill of Rights applied to the States based on the 14th Amendment, which then increased the power of the Federal government, which is contrary to the purpose of the Bill of Rights. (See Gitlow v. New York, 1925).

Again, the Supreme Court applied the Bill of Rights to the States in Cantwell v. Connecticut, 1940. The case was a State issue, yet, the Supreme Court applied the Bill of Rights to the States.

Seven years later, the Supreme court once again applied the establishment clause of the 1st Amendment in the content of separation of church and state in Everson v. Board of Education, 1947.

The intentions of the Bill of Rights were to prevent the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT from RESPECTING one religion over another. It had nothing to do with separating religion from the State. In fact, issues of religion were State matters, NOT Federal.


Contrary to what people believe, the government is supposed to support and promote religious communities according to the Bill of Rights.

Funny, the only religion that applied to this at the time was Christianity (Yes, I know Native Americans were there, but the founders did not consider them part of the Nation). The Founders of the USA had no idea that America would look like it does today.

Christianity permeated the US government:
In 1777, with the Revolutionary War threatening the flow of Bibles from England, Congress approved the purchase of 20,000 Bibles from Holland to give to the states.

No fewer than six of the 13 original states had official, state-supported churches – "establishments of religion"! I'll bet you didn't know that. In fact, these states – Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and South Carolina – refused to ratify the new national Constitution unless it included a prohibition of federal meddling with their existing state "establishments of religion."

Still other states required those seeking elected office to be Christians.

The Continental Congress routinely designated days of "fasting and prayer" and other religious observances, appointed government-funded chaplains, and appropriated money to pay for Christian missionaries to convert the Indians.

  • Read the article

  • Therefore, if people want a separation of church and state. It needs to become a law. Right now, it's nothing more than a legal term that has been IMPOSED from the Federal level (which is unconstitutional). According to the US Constitution, there is no such thing as separation of church and state. Stop forcing opinions that don't exist on other people because you don't like it and go read a history book.

    Oh, Shut Up Already!

    MSNBC has reported that an English teacher is under fire for passing out a poem, "Why Jesus is Better than Santa Claus."

    "Parents in Irasburg said a teacher crossed the line between church and state when he gave out a handout entitled "Why Jesus is Better than Santa Claus." Parents also said that the handout is reflective of a pattern of religious-themed material being given by language arts teacher Wally Rogers."

    He also got in trouble for a poster of the Ten Commandments and some "religious-themed" books on the shelves.

    Oh, please! You know what. Evolution is a religion (and a false one at that). Which, the government funds and supports this teaching in science classes. Hmmm...seems to me that there is a violation of separation of church and state. And yes, you can call the body of believers in evolution a "church."

    But yet, few back up Christians when they complain or bring up issues of evolution in the classroom. These things just make me angry...

    You know what, I applaud this teacher. Good for you for telling those kids the truth! As a teacher, myself, I can't lie to my students. I told my students this year that Santa doesn't exist. I'm not going to lie to them.

    One of the issues happens to be that religious beliefs are NOT to be taught in the classroom. Why is it that as a social studies teacher, I am mandated from the State to teach about the tenents of Islam? But yet, if I talk about Jesus or the Bible, I can get fired.

    Oh...I'm buring up! I'll be praying for this teacher.
    Read the story here...

    No Way!!!!!

    So many of you know how bad I want to be on the Amazing Race. Cindy told me that the Amazing Race was in Tainan City!!!!!

    I'm sooooooooooo sad!!!!!! I didn't know it!!!!

    Oh, well, I guess I can delight in the fact that my life is an "amazing...uh, race." Seven more days until China!!

    My Comments from Choi's Facebook.

    It seems as if my friend had been getting a lot of negative comments because he probably will vote for Huckabee based on the fact that he's a pastor. Some people didn't like this. They also made several comments about how "good" Joel Olsteen is. And several said that they didn't want a pastor shouting at them they are going to hell if they are sinning. I tried to lay it in 3 posts. It is as follows below...back to work!

    Choi, I see you're getting a lot of flack for this. So here's some help. Here's the difference between Huckabee and Olsteen:

    Huckabee will admit publically that Jesus Christ is the only way to get to heaven. Olsteen will not. Olsteen will not even have a cross in his church because he doesn't want to offend people who come. (These are his words, not mine...I can find the interview for you, if you'd like...I believe it was with Larry King?)
    When repentence and faith is left out of the Gospel message it is NOT the Gospel. By telling people only of God's grace, it only creates false converts. It's telling people that Jesus Christ will give you something that's missing in your life (as Olsteen, Hybels, Bell, and other emergents preach). There is no understanding of sin and repentence.
    My question is, is what is this "renewed hope" that people have as a result of their messages? According, to Olsteen, it is "having your BEST life now." Have these preachers ever read the NT?

    What is comes down to is Olsteen and those of like mind are afraid of offending people. That is not love. To truly love one is to tell them the true. People don't go to hell because they don't "accept Jesus into their hearts" (by the way...what Bible verse is that?!?) They go to hell because they never repented from sin and put their trust in Jesus.

    Do you consider yourself a good person? Do you think you will go to heaven because you accept Christ into your heart and you are now good? Have you ever told a lie, even just one. Have you ever stolen anything, it doesn't matter what it is. Have you ever looked with lust at another person? Jesus said that if you've looked with lust, you committed adultery in your heart. The Bible says that all liars will have their part in the lake of fire. We are going to be judged and will be found guilty if we've broken God's law (sinned even once). We can't pay the fine and THAT'S why we NEED a Savior!

    Not because we have "a God size hole in our heart." A good and loving judge won't let you go if you've committed a crime. He will punish you. And God is a good and loving judge. And when one understands this, then Jesus becomes precious to him or her. Jesus' scarificial act becomes precious. And when trials and tribulations come, a Christian clings to God and His Word because he knows that everything is for the Glory of God.
    Unlike those who "accept Christ" because he can give me something, they backslide. When times are rough, instead of running to the Cross, they run away....and you know what, it's because they have never slidden forward in the first place.

    Some video to watch:

    Also look up "True and False Conversion" on YouTube. Watch these, then reply.

    Thursday, January 24, 2008

    Countdown Begins...


    I have a personal tour guide (just him and I). My prayer that he is a Christian and will help me out...or...he's not a Christian and repents and puts his trust in the Savior!

    ooooo...I'm excited!


    So, I shared one of my SOBE lessons with someone today and he said that refering to hell as a "lake of fire" is wrong. We shouldn't be telling people this. He threw out the Hebrew and Greek for "hell" and said that King James Version has it wrong. Basically, he sounded as if hell as presented in KJV doesn't exist. He continued talking about how when we die, we're dead, our soul is dead. He said that death really means sleep. So when we die, our soul just kind of goes to sleep and we don't know anything...until judgement.

    So, this made me think...(and I actually disagree...). My next few posts will be a little word study on hell, lake of fire, and death.
    Today's topic: Hell

    Matthew 5:29
    Transliteration: Geenna (Root G1067)
    1) Hell is the place of the future punishment call "Gehenna" or "Gehenna of fire". This was originally the valley of Hinnom, south of Jerusalem, where the filth and dead animals of the city were cast out and burned; a fit symbol of the wicked and their future destruction.

    Transliteration: gay’
    H1516 1) valley, a steep valley, narrow gorge

    Transliteration: Hinnom (H2011)
    Hinnom = "lamentation"
    1)a valley (deep and narrow ravine) with steep, rocky sides located southwest of Jerusalem, separating Mount Zion to the north from the hill of evil counsel' and the sloping rocky plateau of the 'plain of Rephaim' to the south

    Acts 2:27
    Transliteration: Hades (G86)
    1) name Hades or Pluto, the god of the lower regions
    2) Orcus, the nether world, the realm of the dead
    3) later use of this word: the grave, death, hell
    In Biblical Greek it is associated with Orcus, the infernal regions, a dark and dismal place in the very depths of the earth, the common receptacle of disembodied spirits. Usually Hades is just the abode of the wicked, Luk 16:23, Rev 20:13, 14; a very uncomfortable place. (TDNT)

    2 Peter 2:4
    Transliteration: tartaroo (G5020)
    1) the name of the subterranean region, doleful and dark, regarded by the ancient Greeks as the abode of the wicked dead, where they suffer punishment for their evil deeds; it answers to Gehenna of the Jews
    2) to thrust down to Tartarus, to hold captive in Tartarus

    Now, for "lake of fire," found in Revelation:

    G3041 Transliteration: limnē (from root: G3040)
    through the idea of nearness of shore
    G3040: a harbour, haven

    4442 Transliteration: pur

    So, how can we describe hell:
    The English word hell is used to describe the future punishment of those who do not repent and put their trust in Jesus Christ. It is a place where the filth and the dead are cast out and burned. Physically, it is a deep, narrow revine or valley (elsewhere in the Bible it is described as a bottomless pit, a deep valley is a good description because we don't know how "deep" is "deep"). Hell also refers to the lower regions (The Word says that the unregenerent will be cast DOWN to hell) and the releam of the dead (this then would refer to spiritual death). Hell is the abode of the wicked. It is not a pleasant place to be.

    Having been described as a valley, one can stretch that to the image of a lake. If you were to drain lakes, they would be valleys!

    So, having given the image of "Gehenna" and a valley, one can say that "lake of fire" is an accurate description of hell. do you consider yourself a good person? :)

    Wednesday, January 23, 2008

    Answers to Atheist

    This comes from SOBE Lesson 72. The questions come from a Hollywood atheist organization. I thought I'd share them...What do you think?

    1) How would you define God, and why are you so convinced that there is one?
    God is the Creator, Upholder, and the Sustainer of the universe. He revealed Himself to Moses as the one and only true God.

    2) If everything needs a creator, then who or what created God?
    No person or thing created God. He created “time,” and because we dwell in the dimension of time, reason demands that all things have a beginning and an end. God, however, dwells outside of the dimension of time. He moves through time as we flip through the pages of a history book; this can be proved by simple study of the prophecies of Matthew 24, Luke 21, and 2 Timothy 3. He dwells in “eternity,” having no beginning or end. This is a dimension in which all humanity will dwell when God withdraws time.

    3) How can something that cannot be described be said to exist?
    The color blue cannot be accurately described to a man who was born blind. Just because it cannot be described doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. There is plant life on the bottom of the deepest oceans that has never been seen by man, let alone described by him. Despite this, it still exists. Does the (unseen) far side of a planet fail to exist merely because man cannot describe it?

    4) Since countless religions in the world today claim to be the one true reli-
    gion, why do you think yours is truer than theirs?
    No religion is “truer” than another. “Religion” is man’s futile effort to tryto find peace with God. The Christian doesn’t strive to have peace with his Creator. It was given to him in the person of the Savior. The uniqueness of Jesus of Nazareth is His statement, “The Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins.” No religion of man can do that. Christianity is not a manmade “religion,” but a personal relationship with the one true God.

    5) Can more than one of these religions be right?
    In one sweeping statement, Jesus discards all other religions as a means of finding forgiveness of sins. Jesus, who claimed to be God, said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). The Bible says about Jesus, “There is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5) and, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). See also Answer #4.

    6) If you feel in your heart that your religion is the right one, how do you answer those of other faiths who claim the same thing?
    Christians don’t base their faith on feelings; their feelings are irrelevant to truth. If I am flying from Los Angeles to New York, my feelings about whether I am going in the right direction have nothing to do with that fact. We can know with our intellect that Christianity is true, regardless of our feelings. The Bible’s thousands of fulfilled prophecies, historical accuracy, and many infallible proofs attest to its reliability.

    7) How do you settle the debate and find out which of these religions, if any, is the right one?
    Jesus promises that He and the Father will reveal themselves to all who love and obey Him. This is the ultimate challenge to any skeptic. If you repent and place your faith in Jesus Christ, He will give you eternal life and you can know that your eternity is secure.

    8) Why does God allow all these false religions to exist?
    Because God wants mankind to worship and love Him, He gave Adam and Eve the free will to choose whether to obey or disobey Him. People
    have chosen to reject God’s way and instead seek to establish their own righteousness through works-based religions.
    God allows these false religions and atheism to exist for the same reason He allows sinful humans to exist. The Bible tells us that God is not willing that any should perish (regardless of whether they are religious or profess atheism), but that they all come to repentance.

    9) Is the bloody history of Christianity consistent with what is supposed to be a religion of love, or does it simply illustrate the consequences of abandoning reason for faith?
    The Bible commands Christians to love their enemies and do good to those who spitefully use them. The terrorists in the World Trade Center tragedy carried out their agenda in the name of Allah (their god). This is nothing new. The Crusaders and others who have committed atrocities in the name of Christianity were also evil men who were carrying out their depraved agendas. A thinking person can distinguish between those who use the Christian faith for their own political or “religious” ends and those who are true followers of Jesus. In other words, just because someone claims to be a Christian doesn’t mean that he is. He could be what is commonly known as a hypocrite, or an impostor.

    10) If everything is the product of a “grand design” by an omniscient, benevolent designer, why is the history of life a record of horrible suffering, blundering waste, and miserable failures?
    Why does this God go through billions of years of such carnage without yet arriving at His goal? God’s original creation was “good,” but because of mankind’s sin we now live in a “fallen” creation. Before sin entered the world there was no suffering, disease, decay, or death. The Bible’s explanation of suffering actually substantiates the truth of Scripture.

    11)Why did God intervene so many times in human affairs during antiquity (according to the Bible) and yet not do anything during the Holocaust of the Second World War?
    No human can claim to know whether or not God intervened in the affairs of humanity at any time between 1939 and 1945. However, the Old
    Testament makes it very clear that there were times when God didn’t intervene in the affairs of His people. He purposefully allowed their enemies to overpower them so that they would turn back to Him.

    12) Why should one’s inner convictions about the existence of God indicate that He/She/They/It exists outside of that person’s mind?
    The Bible says that God has placed eternity in the hearts of men and given all people everywhere an awareness of Him so that they are without excuse. He created us to know Him. Throughout history and throughout the world, all cultures acknowledge the existence of God.
    Besides, why should one’s inner convictions about the non-existence of God indicate that He doesn’t exist outside of that person’s mind? Our personal convictions and beliefs do not affect reality. God simply is.

    13) Can a God who would abandon His children when they needed Him the most still be considered “all good”?
    One of humanity’s great errors is to misunderstand the meaning of “good.” A “good” judge will pronounce a stiff sentence on a vicious murderer. A “loving” judge who dismisses a case against a vicious killer because he loves him is not a good judge. Justice and goodness are inseparable. Many times God chastened Israel (gave them their just dessert) because of His goodness. He wanted them to turn back to Him for their own good.

    14) If the God of the Bible is “all good,” why does He Himself say that He created evil (Isaiah 45:7)?
    The word translated “evil” in that verse (“I make peace, and create evil”) means “calamity” or “suffering”—God uses both good and bad events in our lives to bring us into a right relationship with Him. However, because God is sovereign over all events, He did allow evil to come into being.
    God gave mankind a choice to have a loving relationship with Him. The original sin was when Adam and Eve chose to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Once man knew both good and evil, he had to choose between the two. Because God wants people to worship Him freely out of love and enjoy His incredible blessings, He tells each one of us: “See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil...,
    therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live” (Deuteronomy 30:15,19).

    15) If something is not rational, should it be believed anyway?
    At one time, the concept of a thousand-ton aircraft flying through the air seemed irrational and absurd. But after man studied the laws of physics, it was discovered to be quite rational and believable. If one studies God’s Word and understands His Law, Christianity is seen to be infinitely rational and believable. Atheism, on the other hand, rejects logic and evidence and is the epitome of irrationalism. It should be abandoned by any rational person as being foolishness.

    16) Is there a better way than reason to acquire knowledge and truth?
    No. That’s why the Bible says, “‘Come now, and let us reason together,’ says the LORD.” That’s why when the apostle Paul spoke “the words of truth and reason,” King Agrippa said, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.” That’s why Paul “reasoned” with Felix (the governor) about “righteousness, self-control, and judgment to come.” And that’s why Felix “was afraid.”

    17) If you would answer #16 with “faith,” then why are there so many contradictory faiths in the world?
    There are many faiths because all nations recognize that there is a Creator. However, in their ignorance they worship the moon, the sun, or an idol. No one has ever found an atheistic tribe, because people are not that ignorant. God has given light to every man.

    18) Is comfort more important to you than intellectual integrity?
    No, it’s not. That’s why I am a Christian.

    19) If you believe, as many do, that all religions worship the same God under different names, how do you explain the existence of religions which have more than one god, or Buddhism, which, in its pure form, has no god?
    All religions do not worship the same God. People who reject the one true God of the Bible can find any number of gods, of any type, to suit their tastes. They may choose to worship a small wooden god that asks only for shelf space, one that promises paradise in exchange for a certain number of daily prayers, or one that demands specific offerings or good deeds. People who reject the one true God have always been able to devise a replacement.

    20) What would it take to convince you that you are wrong?
    I have already been convinced that I was wrong. I was wrong for my 22 years of unconverted life. Conversion to Christianity is when a fallible human being admits that he is wrong and that the infallible Creator is right.

    21) If nothing can convince you that you are wrong, then why should your faith be considered anything other than a cult?
    A cult is defined as “a system of religious worship and ritual,” which would seem to describe every manmade religion. Christianity, on the other hand, is not a strict adherence to ritual, but a personal relationship with a living God. When a person repents of his sin and places his trust in Jesus, God fills him with His Spirit—the person becomes spiritually alive. He has moved out of the realm of belief into the realm of experience. Once he knows the truth, nothing can convince him otherwise.
    Besides, why should adherence to the truth be a determining factor in whether a belief is valid? I believe in gravity and nothing can convince me that I am wrong—but my belief is still true.

    22) If an atheist lives a decent, moral life, why should a loving, compassionate God care whether or not we believe in Him/Her/It?
    No matter how decent and moral we think we are, we have all sinned by violating God’s holy Laws. To see how you fare against God’s standard, review the Ten Commandments (given in Exodus chapter 20). God’s concern isn’t whether or not we believe in Him; the Bible says that even the demons believe—and tremble. God commands that we repent of our sins and trust Jesus Christ alone for our salvation. If we refuse do that, we will be given justice on the Day of Judgment and we will perish.

    23) Should any religion that demands we elevate faith over reason be trusted?
    Never elevate faith over reason. Exercise faith because of reason. A man who has to jump 25,000 feet out of a plane exercises faith in a parachute because he reasons that he will perish without it.

    24) How can the same God who, according to the Old Testament, killed everybody on Earth except for eight people be considered as anything other than evil?
    Look at the lifestyle of those people—they deserved death because of their evil actions. That’s what happens when men reject God. We will all die because God, the Judge of the universe, has pronounced the death sentence upon us: “The soul who sins shall die.” Criminals rarely speak well of the judge. To them, he is “evil.”

    25) Must we hate our families and ourselves in order to be good Christians (Luke 14:26)?
    No. Luke 14:26 is what is known as “hyperbole”—a statement of extremes, contrasting love with hate for the sake of emphasis. Jesus tells us that the first and greatest Commandment is to love God with all of our heart, soul, and mind (Matthew 22:37,38). As much as we treasure our spouse and family, and even our own life, there should be no one whom we love and value more than God, no one who takes precedence in our life. To place love for another (including ourself) above God is idolatry.

    26) Since the ancient world abounded with tales of resurrected Savior-Gods that were supposed to have returned from the dead to save humanity, why is the Jesus myth any more reliable than all the others?
    I have never heard of any such “tales of resurrected Savior-Gods.” Any myths there have been have died out for lack of proof. The “Jesus myth,” however, has endured through the ages in cultures all around the world because it is true and provable. Simply read John 14:21 and then try it ...if you dare. If you place your trust in Jesus Christ for your salvation, He will come into your life and reveal Himself to you.

    27) If the Bible is the inerrant word of God, why does it contain so many factual errors, such as the two contradictory accounts of creation in Genesis?
    There are not two accounts of creation in Genesis. Chapter 1 gives the account of creation; chapter 2 gives details of the same creation. I have been reading the Bible every day for thirty years (without fail) and I am not aware of any “factual errors.”

    28) Why isn’t the Bible written in a straightforward way that leaves no doubt about what it means?
    The Bible is very clear to those who obey God. It says of itself that it is spiritually understood, and that the “natural” man cannot receive the things of God. To someone who hasn’t been born spiritually, “they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). However, we can all understand enough to realize that we have sinned against a holy God and need to repent. Once we do that, God gives us the ability to understand His Word.

    29) The last time Christianity attained total power, it resulted in the Dark Ages, so why should we expect anything different from Christian fundamentalists today?
    It was not Christianity but the Roman Catholic church that had power during the Dark Ages. The doctrines of the Roman Catholic church and the Bible are opposed to one another. It was the Roman Catholic church that opposed Galileo, was responsible for the Inquisition, and refused the common people access to the Bible during the Dark Ages. The Christian Church isn’t seeking “total power.” Its agenda is not political.

    30) Has anyone ever been killed in the name of atheism?
    Yes. Atheistic Communist regimes have slaughtered 100 million people. In China an incredible 72 million were murdered, in the Soviet Union 20 million, Cambodia 2.3 million, North Korea 2 million, Africa 1.7 million, Afghanistan 1.5 million, Vietnam 1 million, Eastern Europe 1 million, Latin America 150,000.

    Tuesday, January 22, 2008

    Yet, Another Young "Star" Found Dead.

    Heath Ledger. 28. Apparent drug overdose. Possible suicide.

    How incredibly sad and selfish. And people say the world has better things to offer than Christ...The world offers us nothing but death. You still can't convince me of anything else.

    Monday, January 21, 2008

    I Think I Figured It Out...

    Why is the church allowed to flourish virtually unchecked in the Republic of China? Argument of who controls the ROC aside, why is it that the church is so persecuted and illegal in China and not in Taiwan?

    I think it's because the church in Taiwan doesn't pose a "threat" to the way of life. The church here sticks to itself. It exists in its own little Christian "world." The church in Taiwan is dry and stale. The church is too busy with the fluff messages of Olsteen, Warren, and those of like minds. No one (non-believers) cares about the Christian church because the message is that of a purpose-filled, abundant, best life, prosperity message. It is NOT the Gospel of Jesus Christ!!! There is little evidence that the church is alive and thriving in Taiwan.

    Yet, in China, Christianity will turn the country upside down (or right-side up). The government knows that. Although, China's government attempts to put forth a different face, it still hates Christianity, and therefore, it's still illegal and people are beaten, put in jail and killed because of their belief in Christ.

    Can you imagine the impact that a true revival in Taiwan would bring to Asian countries? Taiwanese people have an amazing opportunity to preach the Gospel and win souls for the Kingdom.

    But yet, it's so sad that they don't want to offend anyone and distort the truth of the Gospel. Remember, you gain eternal life through repentence and trust in Jesus Christ alone...only then will you become a new creation and be changed from glory to glory!

    Sunday, January 20, 2008

    What the *@(*#(@#)@!!!!!

    It's now 1 AM on Monday morning and the noise still has not stopped!!!!!

    I'm going to scream!!

    Inconsiderate of Others?

    I don't know how it is in other parts of Taiwan, but the people in my city have to be the most inconsiderate people I've never met. Every Sunday, the bomb like fireworks begin at 6 AM, waking me up and scaring the fur off my cat! Then the horrid music begins: a klezmer type with 4 or 5 different melodies going on at the same time. Then the drums are added...huge, loud bass drums. In the midst of this noise, a ton of firecrackers and fireworks are set off. This goes on for hours and hours...

    It's now 10:35 PM. It hasn't stopped yet! 16 1/2 hours...yet, another Sunday night with a migraine. And you can't call the police to complain, they are all protecting the event...

    Now, I know for a fact that everyone is not at this event all day long. How inconsiderate of the neighbors. The stuff is so loud! The event is two blocks away, but it sounds as if it's right outside my window. When the bomb like fireworks go off, my apartment shakes!!

    Who gives permits to these people to do this?!?!?

    I'm done with my complaint until next Sunday. I'm going to read my Bible and pray for these people. I don't know if it's wrong to ask God to send some kind of really bad rainstorm in hopes that they will stop. I don't want anyone to get hurt. I just want them to stop the noise!

    The Wedding!! Early Morning at the Groom's Home

    My friend Eric had invited me to his friend's wedding. The married couple were so gracious to let me come along for the whole day. Normally, people just go to the banquet at night. I tried my best to stay out of the way. The fact that I didn't know the couple made it a little strange, but it was a such a great experience to see what happens before the banquet. So, thank you so much Mr. and Mrs. Newlyweds and congratulations.
    Eric and Ray (the two best men) picked me up at 8am on Saturday morning! We took a ride to the groom's home. We took a bunch of pictures and the boys helped the groom prepare a bit. The groom went out to get some make-up (and glitter) put in his hair!!! Eric was in charge of firecrackers. As we rode to the bride's home, he had to light them and throw them out of the car. I was sitting behind him in the car and prayed the whole way to her home!! Praise God, we made it there alive! :)

    Arrival at the Bride's Home

    We arrived at the bride's home. When we got there, everyone started yelling, "He's here!! He's here!!" The mothers met each other and the groom's mom gave the bride's mom a gift. The bridesmaids then refused to let the bride come down. The groom started to yell up to her, "I love you..." It was so precious!! Then the bridesmaids played a trick on the groom. They gave him a board with a lot of lipstick kisses on it. He had to guess which one was the bride's. If he guessed correctly, he could go upstairs and take his bride away. He guessed wrong, but finally, he was allowed upstairs.

    The Bride Finally Came Down

    The groom finally got the bride to come down. They bowed to the ancestor idol in the home and then her mother and grandmother gave her a talk about how to be a good wife and daughter-in-law. She will live with the groom's parents. The last picture is the kissing board from the trick the bridesmaids played on the groom.

    Arrival Back at the Groom's Home

    We left the bride's home and arrived back at the groom's parent's home, which will now be her home as well. The bride stepped over a little fire when she entered the home for good luck. The parents sprinkled some kind of pink power over her and over the house as she came in to represent love. We then went up to their bedroom. (Actually, Eric had left and I was wondering if I was allowed to be there!! But no one kicked me out). No one, not even the bride and groom were allowed to touch the bed until the bride and groom at a special soup. They were so cute and fed each other.

    The Groom' Hometown in Tainan County

    Next, we traveled out of the city to the groom's hometown. The couple had to go to a temple to let the ancestors know they were getting married. Then the couple went around the town to give out candies. One little girl was quite greedy. She took a lot of candies. She took off on her bike and dropped the candies. She quickly dropped her bike to pick up the candies and a truck stopped within inches of hitting her. It scared me, but it makes me think how much we are like that in sin. We stop to do the things we want or like, even if they are ungodly. However, we're completely unaware of the danger and death that will come to us. So, we sin because we like it, but eventually, we will get hit by the truck.

    Side note: I did not take part in ancestor worship. I just watched and asked a lot of questions. Don't worry. Jesus is too precious to me to even consider.

    The Reception

    I had a good time at the reception and a dog even crashed the party at the end!!! I was able to help set up for the banquet a bit. I loved the bride's choice of dresses for the night. I loved her taste! Very elegant. Anyway, I was EXHAUSTED by 9pm and went home with Eric's former classmates. I got home and crashed on the bed...

    Not Funny.

    The Devil's Beatitudes

    If the Devil were to write his Beatitudes, they would probably look like this:

    Blessed are those who are too tired, too busy, too distracted to spend an hour or two once a week with their fellow Christians in Church - they are my best workers.

    Blessed are those Christians who wait to be asked and expect to be thanked - I can use them.

    Blessed are the touchy, with a bit of luck they may stop going to church - they are my missionaries.

    Blessed are those who are very religious but get on everyone's nerves - they are mine forever.

    Blessed are the troublemakers - they shall be called my children.

    Blessed are those who have no time to pray - they are easy prey for me.

    Blessed are the gossipers - for they are my secret agents.

    Blessed are those critical of church leadership - for they shall inherit a place with me in my fate.

    Blessed are the complainers - I'm all ears for them.

    Blessed are you when you read this and think it is about other people and not yourself - I've got you.

    Author Unknown

    How to Know If Your Church is Alive.

    Does your church define itself as alive because you clap, jump, sing, dance, and have "joy."


    Does it look like the church in Acts 2:41-47.

    Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added [unto them] about three thousand souls.
    Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
    Acts 2:43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
    Acts 2:44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
    Acts 2:45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all [men], as every man had need.
    Acts 2:46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
    Acts 2:47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.

    So, how to tell if your church is alive? Is it soundly teaching the Word? (And the best way would be verse by verse). Just it teach GOD'S truth? or man's? Does your church encourage fellowship with other believers? Do you share meals together? Does your church pray together on a consistant basis? Are people being soundly converted? Are they growing in holiness, righteousness, joy and love? Do they reverence and fear God?

    Just a few things I was thinking about today. Don't get me wrong. I like churches that are more upbeat. There's nothing wrong with it. HOWEVER, just because your church is upbeat, doesn't mean it's alive. All it shows is that people know how to act stupid.

    Saturday, January 19, 2008

    A Real Wedding

    Yesterday, Eric and I went to his friend's wedding. Eric was the best man and this friends were so gracious to let me tag along for the whole day!! I'll write more and share lots of pictures. My favorite part was when the groom went to the bride's house early in the morning to call on her. The bridesmaids were there and wouldn't let the groom "have" their friend. Finally, they played a game on him and he was allowed to "take her away." It was really precious!! The groom kept calling to his bride, "I love you...I've come for you!"

    *insert awws here.*

    Eric and I at 8:30am...before all the fun began!

    Friday, January 18, 2008

    My Mom is Awesome!!

    Man, I'm so blessed to have my mom. I asked her if I could borrow the money for my China trip because it's more expensive than I thought it was. I have to pay it on my credit card and I didn't want the money collecting interest for 3 months before I send the money home to pay the bill (I send money ever couple of months rather than every month).

    She said when I send money home next time, only send her half of the cost of the trip! She said she wanted to give me the other half as a gift!

    Thanks, mom!

    I Finally Found Out!!!!!

    I'm NOT allergic to fish!!!! wooohoooo!!! (I can't wait to eat tuna salad again)!!

    Some of you know that I had an allergic reaction to some fish I ate about 4 or 5 years ago. I didn't have health insurance and couldn't afford to get tested, so I just never ate it. You have no idea what it's been like living for the past few years thinking that you could die if you ate fish. *whew...* Anyway, this means that I'm allergic to something that the fish ate!

    And I know that I'm allergic to certain bugs.

    However, I found out that I'm slightly allergic to CORN and PORK (and housedust)!!! The doctor said that I can still eat it because it's not a serious allergy. He said that I will probably just end up with a stuffy nose or itchy skin. Hmm...I would have never made the connection!! I'm going to deliberately eat pork and corn and see what happens...

    One great thing I found out was that most people are allergic to mites...The doctor was very surprised to find out that I'm NOT! :) Praise Jesus.

    Thursday, January 17, 2008

    Infiltrating the Enemy's Camp

    As many of you know, I have a deep love for mormons. It stems from when mormons "witnessed" to me as a toubled teen and grew later as I began to witness to them.

    I've seen so many mormon missionaries here and have tried to strike up conversations with them. Often, they look lost (in more ways than one), so I pull over and ask if they need help. And so far, my attempts have failed. They reply, "No." And then ignore me.

    I mentioned this to a friend of mine (an ex-mormon) and he gave me a FABULOUS idea...

    Why not go to the mormon church, walk in, look bewildered and start asking questions...use that as a platform to witness to some mormons!

    Although, he suggested that I not go alone (which I agree with). Now, I need someone to go with me...any takers?

    I think I'm going to try this after I return from China...but Mr. Brian, I need a bit of coaching! :)

    Tuesday, January 15, 2008

    So, So, So Sad.

    I read this and it broke my heart. I spent the whole summer before high school hanging out with this guy and others from the movie, "Sleepers." Although I never had contact with him again, it still feels like some I knew died and the circumstances around his death are sad. See, we never know when our lives will end. What will happen to you when you die?

    Troubled Actor Brad Renfro Dies at 25
    Jan. 15, 2008, 9:33 PM EST
    Actor Brad Renfro, whose career began promisingly with a childhood role in "The Client" but rapidly faded as he struggled with drugs and alcohol, was found dead Tuesday in his home. He was 25.

    Paramedics pronounced him dead at 9 a.m., said Craig Harvey, chief investigator for the Los Angeles County coroner's office. The cause of death was not immediately determined, Harvey said, but an autopsy could be conducted as early as Wednesday.

    Renfro had reportedly been drinking with friends the evening before his death, Harvey said.

    Renfro's lawyer, Richard Kaplan, said he did not know whether the death was connected to any problems with addiction.

    "He was working hard on his sobriety," Kaplan said. "He was doing well. He was a nice person."

    Renfro recently completed a role in "The Informers," a film adaptation of a Bret Easton Ellis novel that stars Winona Ryder, Brandon Routh and Billy Bob Thornton.

    "Brad was an exceptionally talented young actor and our time spent with him was thoroughly enjoyable," Marco Weber, president of the film's production house, Senator Entertainment, said in a statement.

    The actor served 10 days in jail in May 2006 after pleading no contest to driving while intoxicated and guilty to attempted possession of heroin.

    The latter charge stemmed from his arrest in Los Angeles' Skid Row area, when he attempted to buy heroin from an undercover officer in 2005.

    For several years he was better known for that drug bust and the resulting criminal case than for acting.

    After one court appearance, he talked to reporters about drug rehabilitation, saying he was "tired of paying the consequences" for drinking and drug use and eager to get clean.

    "It's definitely been an eye-opener," he said of his rehabilitation program.

    Other run-ins with the law included a 1998 charge of cocaine and marijuana possession, for which he avoided jail time in a plea deal. He was also placed on probation in January 2001 and ordered to pay $4,000 for repairs to a 45-foot yacht he and a friend tried to steal in Florida in August 2000.

    He was arrested again in May 2001 and charged with underage drinking, violating the terms of his probation, and was ordered into alcohol rehabilitation the following March.

    A native of Knoxville, Tenn., Renfro's film career began when he was 12, acting opposite Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones in "The Client." His other credits included "Sleepers," "Deuces Wild," "Apt Pupil" and "The Jacket."

    Monday, January 14, 2008

    Ms. Chen's End of the Year Gala (Part One)

    We had a formal "end of the year" dinner party at a swanky hotel. It was fun.

    Ms. Chen's End of the Year Gala (Part Duex)

    Looking at Jesus.

    I've been hearing the phrase "keeping a single focus on only Jesus." Meaning that we should not look at "Jesus and religion" or "Jesus and the world." But the one that made me think was we should look at "Jesus and the Law."

    Well, I understand the idea behind looking solely at Jesus...but...if we never look at the Law, how will we know that Jesus came to fulfill it? How will we ever know why Jesus came? We will never see ourselves as God sees us: filthy, wretched beings that are deserving of punishment in hell.

    The Law and Jesus go together. The Law is a reminder that we NOT good people, but Jesus makes us righteous in the eyes of the Father. I think it's important to return to the Law every now and then, so that we never lose sight of why Jesus we never lose sight of the Cross...and just how precious Jesus is to us.

    Sunday, January 13, 2008

    Prosperity Preaching

    Bitter Believer Over "Prosperity" Preaching

    Please read the above article. Prosperity preaching bothers me on sooo many different levels. This is just one of them. While, it is ultimately a person's business to give money to a ministry, the ministers have a great responsibility to not deceive people or give them false hopes. If you do this, you are a false teacher.

    Pastors be very careful what you tell a congregation about giving money. If your church needs money to complete a task, just tell the people. Be honest with them. Don't tack on "God will give you special favor or blessing if you support this financially." OR "God is speaking to (enter number here) to give (X amount of dollars)." Pastor friend, be very careful about what you claim is a "word" from God. Do not manipulate scripture to your (or your church's) advantage.

    Take a look at Acts 8:

    Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, saying, “Give this authority to me as well, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! You have no part or portion in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart may be forgiven you. For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of iniquity.”

    In fact, we are told we are sinning if we think we can get something (be it a house, car, blessings, favor, etc) from God by giving money. We already have Divine favor because we are children of God.

    Pastor friend, remember, you will be held accountable for your words (just as much as I will be). But you have a greater responsibility because you are leading people...

    Saturday, January 12, 2008

    Pub Witnessing.

    After our staff dinner, everyone went to this pub for a drink. I went to be social, but what does one do at a pub when they don't drink...they find some fish!!!

    I saw these 5 guys sitting in a room, drinking and smoking. I said hi to them and introduced myself. About 10 minutes later, I told my co-worker that I want to go share the Gospel with them. She's a Christian, but is very shy and was hesitant. I convinced 4 others to go with me as well. (Really, just to be safe, although there was a huge window and everyone could see me...and for translation purposes).

    I took the boys through the Law and Grace. At first, they make a huge joke about it. They said they were just living for the moment and enjoying themselves. They said that I was asking very serious questions. They were gracious and gave me some time to talk to them about repentence, sin, death, and eternal life. The boy second from the left was the most vocal. It was all a joke to him until he knew he was in trouble. The boy was very solemn and began to cry. I told them that I wasn't here to ruin their night, but we are not promised tomorrow. They said they would think about the things I said and I gave them some Gospel tracks. Please pray for these boys. Two of them were very receptive, but their friends were there. If it were one-on-one, it would have been different. However, I had to tell them!!! I couldn't wait to see if I could get them each alone.

    Please pray for Dustin, Ian, Cody, Push, and one who doesn't have an English name, but God knows his name...

    Also, my non-Christian co-worker said she learned a lot from that encounter. I said, well you heard what I talked about and does it concern you? She said no. I put a Gospel tract in her purse before she left and told her to read it later.