#crossequalslove Calvary covers it all

The Savior alone carried the cross
For all of my debts
He paid the cost.
Salvation complete,

Now forever I’m free.
Calvary covers it all

Calvary covers it all
My sin and shame don’t count anymore
All praise to the One who has ransomed my soul
Calvary covers it all

No power on earth, not even the grave
can separate us from mercy and grace
He is faithful to save
Oh, His blood never fails
Calvary covers it all

Calvary covers it all
My sin and shame don’t count anymore
All praise to the One who has ransomed my soul
Calvary covers it all

No one but Jesus
Can make us pure as snow
We stand in your freedom
Calvary covers it all

I’m eternally grateful to you, Lord. I can never fathom just how much, how much you love me… that You chose the nails, You opened my arms wide and hung on the cross. Thank You, Jesus…

Israel Trip: Day 2

It’s the second day and we are gonna cross the Sea of Galilee! The Sea of Galilee lies at about 180 metres below sea level and violent storms sometimes rush down from the surrounding mountains which lead to very rough waters. Here’s a fun fact for you – do you know that the Sea of Galilee provides 30% of the drinking water in Israel? :)

Anyways, the day started off looking slightly overcast and at this point, I was thinking in my heart, “How cool it would be if the sea got rough and we get to experience how the disciples felt when they were tossed by the waves”. Haha! I know I’m crazy for thinking that but we are in the land of the Bible and I just wish to experience it all. By the way, the boat we were on is in the design of a traditional fishing boat from the first century.


Before we departed, we had a flag-raising ceremony and I must say that was a very nice touch.


Israel and Singapore flags flying high!

On board, the boat operator sang worship songs in both English and Hebrew, and he even taught us to sing a worship song in Hebrew! How can we not have our own worship session and sharing of the Word when this is the place where Jesus rebuked the winds and the sea, taught on Peter’s boat and walked on water?

- Excerpt from my notebook -
Put your trust in the Lord!
This is still the same Sea of Galilee, He is the still same Jesus.When you are distracted by the waves, you sink because your eyes are off Jesus. When your eyes are on Jesus, you can do the impossible.

So it was, as the multitude pressed about Him to hear the word of God, that He stood by the Lake of Gennesaret, and saw two boats standing by the lake; but the fishermen had gone from them and were washing their nets. Then He got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat. When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”
But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!”
For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish which they had taken; 10 and so also were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid. From now on you will catch men.” 11 So when they had brought their boats to land, they forsook all and followed Him. - Luke 5:1-11

When you depend on self-effort, you’ll end up with little or even nothing. When Jesus is in your boat, He will bless you. Jesus is a gentleman. When you serve Him, He will set you up for a blessing because you are so precious to Him.


I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth.- Genesis 9:13

Although I had petitioned to Daddy God to see a rainbow in Israel, I was still blown away when I saw it and I burst out crying. This was a sign to me that He loves me dearly and He hears my heart’s desires. :’)


One of our members packed some bread from breakfast and she shared with us to feed the seagulls, and there were a lot of them!


The sun is out and the place is just so picturesque :)

When we got to the dock, we hopped off to visit the Ancient Boat Museum, to check out a boat that was dated to the first century based on carbon dating. It was discovered by two brothers who were fishermen during a drought.

 

This video below will speak a thousand words, and it’s about 8 minutes long.

The boat was well preserved because it was covered with mud and that prevented decomposition. From what was shared, the moment the boat was exposed to the air, the wood was really fragile and a light poke can cause a dent in the wood. Special effort had to be taken to excavate and preserve the boat. There was also evidence of repeated repairs on the boat as they found different types of wood used in the replacing of certain parts, and there were up to 12 different types of wood identified from the remains.

Next stop, Mount Arbel!


This is the view on route to Mount Arbel, and tell me how is this not just awe-inspiring.


Mount Arbel is located at the lower Galilee region and the view from the top of the mountain is just spectacular. This is the place where Jesus goes to to pray and spend time alone.


The weather was just beautiful for hiking. :)


I thought since wildflowers were aplenty, it wouldn’t hurt to get a bunch of them! :D I can’t believe wildflowers can be that pretty. Why don’t we have nicer looking wildflowers in Singapore?! :(


On our way to lunch, we saw an area undergoing excavation. This is supposed to be Magdala, where Mary Magdalene came from.


We are having St Peter’s fish today! The St. Peter’s fish is actually the tilapia.


I spy someone eyeing my food…


On the road, we saw an Israeli army tank! How often does one get to come across such a sight?


Our next stop is Bethsaida, or rather a site where people believe is Bethsaida. Bethsaida means “Fisherman’s House” in Hebrew and it is the birthplace of Peter. Jesus also did many miracles here too. There’s much debate whether if this is the spot because why would this be a fishing village if it’s so far from the sea and if this was the spot that would mean Capernaum would be underwater.


When Pastor Prince shared that when the sick were lined up in the street and they were healed when Jesus walked past them, it was seriously a tad hard to imagine because in my head, I’m thinking the street is as wide as the pavement of Orchard Road. But when I’m here, I totally get it now. :)


A lot of places are still under excavation and I hope the next time I come by, there will be new sharing by the tour guide about these places!


This is the second rainbow we came across as we visited Capernaum. :) Double promise, double restoration I claim in Jesus’ name!

We saw the house of Peter where Jesus stayed with him and healed his mother-in-law of fever (which now has a church built above it), and this is the place where the paralytic man was let down through the roof to be healed by Jesus.


Ruins of a synagogue. In the past, synagogues function somewhat like a community centre and everyone would come together. People would also come to discuss about portions of text from the Torah. The ladies would be on the second floor, segregated from the men on the first floor to prevent.. distraction, heh.

The last stop of the day was the Church of St. Peter’s Primacy. This is where Jesus showed Himself to His disciples in His resurrected form while they were out fishing. Jesus also restored Peter and commissioned him to look after His sheep.


We had a short praise and worship session and broke bread together.


Then we were kinda ‘chased’ out as it was past the opening hours. =(


And here’s one glorious sunset picture to end the day :)

 

Israel trip: Day 1

It’s been on my heart to visit Israel, to walk the paths that Jesus had taken and have personal revelations of His love for me in the holy land and this year, I finally made the trip. :)

We went with a tour group and we met up at Changi Airport for a briefing and prayer session first before we all dispersed to do our own things prior to embarkation. We transited at Bangkok and we had to go through strict security control (loads of questioning from El Al’s staff) before we could finally board the plane that would take us to Israel. We were supposed to be boarding at about 10pm++ but by the time we boarded it was way past midnight and I fell asleep in my seat even before the plane took off. After 11+hours, we finally arrived!


The first thing we did was to get some food in our tummies, and we did so at Caesarea Maritima, our first stop of the day.

Oh yes, I feel that we have been blessed with the best tour guide and bus driver for this trip. Coincidentally, both the tour guide and bus driver are named Avi. :) Throughout the whole trip, we were constantly bombarded with tons of biblical, historical and geographical knowledge regarding Israel by our tour guide (and he really knows his stuff) while our bus driver had been expertly navigating the narrow roads on the mountains (sometimes with another bus coming from the other direction!) and taking care of members who are unable to go on the trails. He’s not supposed to do that, but he went the extra mile. Anyway, I’ll stop side-tracking!


View from the cafe where we had our breakfast

Caesarea Maritima is where Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius’ household and they were among the first Gentile believers. It is also the place where apostle Paul was imprisoned for 2 years before he was taken to Rome to stand trial.


Walking part the hippodome where horseraces, events and games are held in this arena.


Ruins


We also saw the remains of an ancient theatre where performances were put up for the pleasure of the citizens. Pastor Prince had also preached there previously! :)


The aqueduct that brings water into the city.

Next stop, Mount Carmel!


At Mount Carmel. Pictures don’t do the place justice.

Israel was engaged in idolatry and Elijah proposes a test of the powers of Baal and God. Two altars were built, one for God and the other for Baal and to see which god will answer by fire. Mount Carmel is where Elijah called down fire and God consumed the sacrifice (and even the altar!), defeating the Baal prophets.

Next, we proceeded to Megiddo. Megiddo is an ancient fortress/city and it is also identified as Armageddon in the book of Revelation, the site of the world’s last great battle.


We came across an altar, where they would conduct sacrifices on.


This is a public granary where people use one stairway down and another up to deposit their grains.


There’s also an underground water system and it’s pretty cool. 183 stairs down and walking through the 80m tunnel (where it’s really cooling underground), the people of the day could get access to the spring located outside the city without being seen by enemies outside the city walls.

Last but not least, we went to Mount of Precipice, where the Gospel of Luke shared that Jesus was rejected by His fellow Nazarenes after He had preached in the synagogue and they wanted to throw him over the cliff.


View from Mount of Precipice.

On the way to our hotel in Tiberias back, we passed by Nazareth (which is now occupied by mostly Muslims) and Cana. The thing about tour trips, we end the day quite early at about 6pm and so we would get enough rest for the next day’s activities since we had to get up early. :)

Will blog more again!

Ines de la Fressange x Uniqlo

A former muse to Karl Lagerfeld and a fashion model in the 80s, Ines de la Fressange is undoubtedly one of my style icons (love her Parisian Chic book!). There’s a certain je ne sais quoi about the way the French dress, and the whole world’s trying to emulate that elusive style. Now, when I heard that she’s collaborating with Uniqlo, I knew I had to lay my hands on the items the moment it was available on March 28! Kevin (who’s on leave) and I trooped down to the Suntec City Mall to score the much coveted pieces of Parisian style and there were many like-minded individuals like us, already putting item after item into their shopping baskets.

So… here I went home with these pieces (too lazy to do a haul picture!):

Update: I bought two more items over the weekend, the shirt dress in black and a cap!

They are adding new items periodically as there’s apparently two more collections that would be released in late April and late May, so we’ll watch and see… I have a feeling there’s more damage to my wallet in the months to come.

 

Upon His shoulders

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… “Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between his shoulders.”  –Deuteronomy 33:12

When we were in Israel, it’s as if I’ve been sensitised to hear Daddy God’s whispers. One day while we were walking on the streets, I happened to see a father carrying his kid on his shoulders and He spoke, “See, I’ve placed you on My shoulders. You can rest in the knowledge of My strength. When you are high and lifted up, you can see from a much higher perspective than you can when you are on your own two feet. “

While I was wheeling from what He said, the father and child walked past me and I was like, damn, there goes my faith picture to remind me of what Daddy God said! He heard me and sent me another father who carried his son upon his shoulders some days later and I wasted no time in snapping it (framing of shot and all that stuff goes out the window)! I tried being observant for the next few days to see if it was a coincidence but I didn’t see any. What can I say, this is wholly God-planned. ;)

Daddy God, thank you for reminding me that I’m the one You love and placed upon Your strong shoulders. Sometimes I may come to you all tired and heavy laden, but I know nothing is too heavy for you to carry. :)

Back from Israel!

Hello! I’ve gotten back from Israel and boy, what a trip it was.

We went with a group of strangers and came back as one big, caring and loving family. This is one blessing that I’ve never expected since it’s been eons since I last went overseas with a tour group. :)

There’s so many things I want to record down, in much greater detail, so that I can always have something to refer to when I need reminders of how thankful I am to Daddy God for all He has done and showed me during this trip.

For starters, I asked for a rainbow and I got not 1, not 2 but a total of 4 rainbows on this trip. I just felt so, so, so loved. :’) The pastor who came along on the trip said that she had never seen a rainbow before on the Israel trips she had led previously so this is not a coincidence, it is a God-incident.

Many more things I want to share but first, I need to upload all those pictures I’ve taken onto my laptop. It’s getting late and I should attempt to sleep early in order to get my body clock adjusted back to SG time. Laters!

For a wedding by the sea

I didn’t expect for our wedding to be featured in Shangri-La’s Rasa Sentosa Resort & Spa’s advertorial, so this is really a nice surprise. :) Now gotta lay my hands on a copy of Style:Weddings!

If anyone’s looking for an outdoor wedding venue, I would personally recommend Rasa Sentosa. Why? It’s not just about the location, but the overall experience. When you organise your wedding, you could really do without an uncooperative, unresponsive and incompetent events manager who shirks responsibilities. Therefore I’m really thankful that the team had worked extremely well together with us and our event stylist to execute the vision we had for our wedding. The whole process was relatively stress and drama-free (with several meetings at various stages to make sure everyone is on the same page). Not only that, the staff were all really attentive to our needs.  We wanted a whimsical feel to our wedding so we needed our table centrepieces to be as colourful as possible. It was different from the various themes that were available, but they were able to accommodate to our request to make it happen. Another case in point – When I was walking down the aisle for the Holy Matrimony ceremony on wedding day, my tears were threatening to spill out from my eyes and the staff quickly passed me tissue to dab away the tears before my eye makeup was ruined. :) There were many other instances but I shall just stop here.

So you may want to check out Weddings by the Sea happening on 29 March, 4pm to 9pm and enjoy the showcase of beautiful bridal gowns as you evaluate the venue.

TICKET PRICE: $38 nett per couple

To register for this event, log on to http://MediaCorp.sg/entertains and the ticket price is $38 per couple (goodie bag guaranteed!).