• Christ and Church Life and Building Spirit and Bride

    基督與召會
    生命與建造
    那靈與新婦



    As a lover of Christ and a pursuer of truth, I write down my joys, memories and reflections.

    May God lead us all into the secret of His presence, and build us into the oneness of His body in love.
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Feeling thankful at the end of 2015

Thank you Lord Jesus for year 2015. Indeed you are gracious and beyond my praises.

I thank you for giving us a healthy baby.

I thank you for healing of my aunt from her illness.

I thank you for the marriage of my sister.

I thank you for giving me a new job.

Lord Jesus, I thank you for who You are and for everything you have given and provided to us. Amen.

Stanford Medical School Graduation 2012

Yesterday I had the privilege to attend the commencement of Stanford Medical School. Having been a college student, I know how difficult and selective to get into medical school, and not to mention medical school of Stanford University. As witnessing the graduating class walking into the site, I saw laughters and tears, and heard cheers and claps. This group of people are among the most talented young people in the world, and they earned this degree by many years of hard working and dedication. Their  accomplishment is truly phenomenal, and a bright future awaits them. I truly admire and respect this group of remarkable people. As the they walked into the site, I felt there is distinct line between them and me; our paths have parted and maybe I will never graduate from Stanford Medical School.

As I compare the Stanford Medical School and the Kingdom of God, the former is highly selective and hard to get in, the latter is free to get in and all welcoming; the former requires hard work during the process, the latter is all by grace, no work but all enjoyment.

Romans 4:4-5
Now to the one who works, his wages are not accounted according to grace, but according to what is due. But to the one who does not work, but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted as righteousness.

Romans 11:6
But if by grace, it is no longer out of works; otherwise grace is no longer grace.

Ephesians 2:8-9
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; Not of works that no one should boast.

If it were up to you, what would you choose?

Royal wedding: the form of solemnization of matrimony

As billions of people in the world watched the recent royal wedding between Prince Williams and Miss Catherine, I was actually touched by solid truth embedded in the ceremonial scripts. After some researching, I found out that the scripts were not original creation but rigid recital based on the Anglican (Church of England) traditions called the “Form of Solemnization of Matrimony,” whose original script  can be found at The Wedding ceremony from the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. It has apparently remained almost entirely unchanged from 1662 to the present. I was impressed by 3 things:

Firstly, Even at this chaotic and worldly age, my Lord, as shown by the hymns, messages, and vows, was clearly the Center for this royal wedding.

Secondly, I was impressed by the rigidness of the British as a historic nation. As I compare the ceremony script to the “Form of Solemnization of Matrimony,” I found that they followed the entire process, including steps and words almost to the letter.

Lastly, Though not fond of Anglicanism, which is a denomination set up for political reasons, I was impressed by the truth in the script, especially by their quotes and and histories from the Bible concerning the church as the mystical body and bride of Christ.

Anyway, below I append the exact script that was spoken at the wedding.


The Welcome and Introduction (John Hall, Dean of Westminster Abbey)

Dearly beloved, we are gathered together here in the sight of God, and in the face of this congregation, to join together this Man and this Woman in holy Matrimony; which is an honourable estate, instituted of God in the time of man’s innocency, signifying unto us the mystical union that is betwixt Christ and his Church; which holy estate Christ adorned and beautified with his presence, and first miracle that he wrought, in Cana of Galilee; and is commended of Saint Paul to be honourable among all men: and therefore is not by any to be enterprised, nor taken in hand, unadvisedly, lightly, or wantonly, to satisfy men’s carnal lusts and appetites, like brute beasts that have no understanding; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, soberly, and in the fear of God; duly considering the causes for which Matrimony was ordained.

First, It was ordained for the increase of mankind according to the will of God, and that children might be brought up in the fear and nurture of the Lord, and to the praise of his holy name.

Secondly, It was ordained in order that the natural instincts and affections, implanted by God, should be hallowed and directed aright; that those who are called of God to this holy estate, should continue therein in pureness of living. (slightly modified from the original)

Thirdly, It was ordained for the mutual society, help, and comfort, that the one ought to have of the other, both in prosperity and adversity. Into which holy estate these two persons present come now to be joined.

Therefore if any man can shew any just cause why they may not lawfully be joined together, let him now speak, or else hereafter forever hold his peace.

The Archbishop of Canterbury (Dr. Rowan Williams) said

I require and charge you both, as ye will answer at the dreadful day of judgement when the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed, that if either of you know any impediment, why ye may not be lawfully joined together in Matrimony, ye do now confess it. For be ye well assured, that so many as are coupled together otherwise than God’s Word doth allow are not joined together by God; neither is their Matrimony lawful.

Archbishop to Prince William:

William Arthur Philip Louis, wilt thou have this woman to thy wedded wife, to live together according to God’s law in the holy estate of matrimony?

Wilt thou love her, comfort her, honour and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all other, keep thee only unto her, so long as ye both shall live?

He answered: I will.

Archbishop to Catherine:

Catherine Elizabeth, wilt thou have this man to thy wedded husband, to live together according to God’s law in the holy estate of matrimony? Wilt thou love him, comfort him, honour and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all other, keep thee only unto him, so long as ye both shall live?

She answered: I will.

Prince William received Catherine’s hand from her father, and said after the Archbishop:

I, William Arthur Philip Louis, take thee, Catherine Elizabeth to my wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse: for richer, for poorer; in sickness and in health; to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God’s holy law; and thereto I give thee my troth.

Catherine said after the Archbishop:

I, Catherine Elizabeth, take thee, William Arthur Philip Louis, to my wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse: for richer, for poorer; in sickness and in health; to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God’s holy law; and thereto I give thee my troth.

The Archbishop blessed the ring:

Bless, O Lord, this ring, and grant that he who gives it and she who shall wear it may remain faithful to each other, and abide in thy peace and favour, and live together in love until their lives’ end. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prince William placed the ring upon the fourth finger of Catherine’s left hand, and said after the Archbishop:

With this ring I thee wed; with my body I thee honour; and all my worldly goods with thee I share: in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.


The congregation stood and sang as the couple kneels.

The Archbishop said: Let us pray.

O Eternal God, Creator and Preserver of all mankind, giver of all spiritual grace, the author of everlasting life: send thy blessing upon these thy servants, this man and this woman, whom we bless in thy name; that, living faithfully together, they may surely perform and keep the vow and covenant betwixt them made, whereof this ring given and received is a token and pledge; and may ever remain in perfect love and peace together, and live according to thy laws; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Archbishop addressed the congregation:

Forasmuch as William and Catherine have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, and thereto have given and pledged their troth either to other, and have declared the same by giving and receiving of a ring, and by joining of hands; I pronounce that they be man and wife together, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

The Archbishop blessed the couple:

God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost, bless, preserve, and keep you; the Lord mercifully with his favour look upon you; and so fill you with all spiritual benediction and grace, that ye may so live together in this life, that in the world to come ye may have life everlasting. Amen.

The  royal wedding vows

The Wedding ceremony from the Anglican Book of Common Prayer


Thank you, Grandma Liu

I am very sorrowful when hearing Grandma Liu’s this tragic and sudden passing away. It seemed that her genuine smile was just before my face.

I have always been enjoying and touched by Grandma’s shadings in the Lord’s Table meeting. Every time she spoke, she spoke with a strong and exercised spirit. She always dispense life to all the saints instead of knowledge.

Grandma Liu always brings really good food for every love feast, expressing her genuine love toward the saints. She also like people to enjoy them. I always saw a big smile from her face when she saw us taking and eating her food.

Personally speaking, I also appreciate her care for me. Though I have not been in Davis often, every time I met her, she always warmly greets me, asking me how I am doing and telling me that she has been praying for me. She never hesitate to express her love and care toward people, and she is probably one of the most genuine people I have met.

Thank you, Grandma Liu.
For all the touching and encouraging words you spoke to us.
For all good food and countless meals you have prepared.
For all your pure love and faithful service toward the saints.

In the end, though I can’t help but ask the Lord why this would happen,
I do submit to the Lord’s sovereign arrangements.

“Because we do not regard the things which are seen but the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

This essay was written in memorial of the late Grandma Liu, a beloved elderly sister whom I have known and be cared by for over 10 years.

爺爺, 珍重再見

最後這一滴淚,帶有千萬的不捨;
路終那一閉眼,卸下一生的重擔。

多少記憶, 如幻燈片閃過腦海;
多少慈愛, 如泉水般湧上心頭。

我是爺爺的長孫。自從我出生,他對我有很高的期望, 也有很多的慈愛。

爺爺的愛表達在日常的事上:他親自寫信給我們; 他採摘並準備水果給我們吃; 他也常買了一些東西給我們, 向我們表達他的愛和關心。

爺爺有很多人性的美德。他一再提醒我要有愛心,要謙虛,要節儉,而不貪婪, 他也身體力行。有時候我令他失望或不服從他,但他從來沒有嚴肅地責備或罵過我,也沒有苛責的語氣, 總是用愛心和耐心提醒或鼓勵我。

最近爺爺告訴我很多關於他以前的事和他在高雄煉油廠的職場生活。最後他告訴我,他過了充實的一生,他對主, 對召會, 和對世人都沒有任何遺憾。

當我與他在一起的時候, 我常問他關於基督或召會的生活,他總能從真理和他的經歷中, 給我很好並平衡的答案。雖然我不總是跟他想的一樣,但我裡面有一個深刻的認識和感覺,就是他從他長期與主深的經歷中, 真正的認識主, 也知道很多關於追求主, 事奉主,和事奉召會的事。另一方面,他也很少告訴我明確的教條或知識,總是在生命上供應我。

有一次我問他是否認為自己已經成熟,他謙虛地告訴我,只有主知道。他永遠無法推測,甚至是否只有10%,他都不知道。有時候我會好奇地問他關於召會中負面的東西。他總是拒絕,告訴我他不願意說任何得罪神的事,也不願意讓我知道任何負面的事情。

對我來說,爺爺是一個平易近人的長者,我從來沒有不敢問他的問題。但是我後來發現, 對一些其他的弟兄來說,他是一個受人尊敬的年長弟兄。有時當我與其他年長弟兄交通的時候,我意識到爺爺贏得很多人深處的敬意,而我也對爺爺是什麼樣的弟兄, 和他屬靈的分量, 有很深刻的印象。

爺爺,

我感謝,
你是我的爺爺。
你從心深處愛了我,
也真誠地以我為榮。
你用你的所是教導了我許多寶貴的事物。
的確,主給了我最好的爺爺。
為此,我永遠感激。

我後悔,
我沒有每次都聽您的話。
我沒有每次都仔細地讀您的來信。
我沒有花更多的時間與您在一起。
我沒有請教你更多關於基督的問題。
我沒有遵守承諾讀經給您聽。
我也沒有每次都接受你在愛中的禮物。
為這些,我也永遠懊悔。

爺爺,最後我從心深處說,
你那愛與事奉一生的主, 如今也是我的主。
我願意像您一樣愛祂事奉祂。
請為我禱告,使我忠信地跑到路終。

爺爺, 我愛你, 我深深地想念你。
我答應你,我會好好地照顧自己。

孫 敬筆 2010.8.19

爺爺, 珍重再見

羅馬書 8:38-39
因為我深信,無論是死,是生,是天使,是掌權的,是現今的事,是要來的事,是有能的,是高,是深,或是別的受造之物,都不能叫我們與神的愛隔絕,這愛是在我們的主基督耶穌裡的。

啟示錄 21:4
神要從他們眼中擦去一切的眼淚,不再有死亡,也不再有悲哀、哭號、疼痛,因為先前的事都過去了。

最後這一滴淚,帶有千萬的不捨;
路終那一閉眼,卸下一生的重擔

多少記憶, 如幻燈片閃過腦海;
多少慈愛, 如泉水般湧上心頭

今日, 你跑盡當跑的賽程
將魂交與信實的救主;
那日, 祂要賞賜公義的冠冕
在祂預備的城, 歡喜迎接

爺爺, 一路保重
我們, 聖城再見

Some spiritual reflections in May

These past month has been one of the most interesting months in my life. Here is a just a brief summary of what I have learned and been enlightened through my experiences.

1. The Lord’s sovereign arrangements

Before my trip to Atlanta for my cousin’s graduation, I had many questions concerning the problems in the church and issues in my personal life. In Atlanta, I had the opportunity to have a close and intimate fellowship with one senior brother.

This brother, though clearly a leading and responsible brother, was quite humble and empty. When speaking, he spoke in the spirit, not in the flesh. He quickly earned my inner respect, and while he shared many things from his heart, I also shared some of my questions and problems with him. Skipping the details, one precious thing he helped me to realize is that all things, people, and events that happened around and upon us are all under the Lord’s sovereign arrangements. Even for something that is so impossible, unimaginable, or evil, it is still under His arrangements or permission for our growth and benefits. If we failed to see that, we would suffer much yet in vain. Eventually the Lord would still arrange other situations to force us to turn to Him. Speaking of my own experiences, I now realize that the Lord does use and arrange all the situations to force us to turn to Him in a genuine, desperate, and deeper way, not just to show us that He is the sovereign Lord and we need Him, but to help us to grow in life.

2. The church is the church

This point seems so ordinary and mundane, but it actually requires some spiritual revelation and seeing to understand this precious fact that regardless how degraded the church or how fleshly and unkindly the saints appear to be, the church is the church, and all the saints are part of the one church from now on unto New Jerusalem.

I actually understand and even prophesied concerning this point myself before, but sometimes the vision does become dimmed. This time, while I went to the Lord and  questioned Him some of the “unthinkable” and “unreasonable” things and people in the church, He reminded and refreshed me once again that the church is the church. He has committed Himself to her according to His eternal covenant. And whatever the conditions the saints are at, they are my brothers and sisters from now on unto eternity in the kingdom and in the New Jerusalem. A lot of times I would try to imagine an ideal and perfect church and church life. But this time the Lord helped me to see that the church is not something ideal and perfect in the heaven, but the touchable and tangible saints to and with whom I talk and interact; I am a small member, or even  a lowly servant of the household of God. The right is not given to me to judge and condemn anyone, or to measure the status of the church. All I can do is to love my brothers and sisters, to build up the church and with one another. Praise the Lord for the glorious church!

3. Walk by faith

Like I said earlier, the past month has probably been the most hectic and crazy week of my life. The story began with my company got sold, all the major executives and senior engineers left, the stressful employer-employee negotiation, my team launched a major project we have been working on for months, I got a couple pending job offers, and then ended with my resignation. While struggling with all these chaotic events, I must admit that I was quite suffering and confused, not knowing what to do or act. Yet I did keep turning to the Lord, so I may maintain my composure.

Anyway, during all these chaotic and dark hours, I think I learned experientially for the first time on what is walking by faith. On the one hand, right around the time I was gonna submit my resignation, the Lord dealt with me in an intensified way, exposing my true conditions, asking my confessions and corrections. On the other hand, the Lord encouraged me to trust Him, seemingly asking me to walk forward with my eyes closed. While imagining that a mature Christian would be able to walk long and far by faith like Abraham did, now I realize that I am still a young and immature Christian, just beginning to learn and experience one of the most basic and foremost trait and character of a genuine Christian.

May the Lord continue to lead and make straight my paths which He set before me, and I shall walk by faith thoughout my earthly journey and run the race with His abundant supply and grace.

Amen.

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