We were supposed to have started our ride at 7.30am. But it rained and so the Brompton Pastors Club had breakfast in my home. A leisurely breakfast. By the time we finally rode off it was 9am. The weather was superbly cool. We rode to the Chinese and Japanese Garden because Then Chee Min came all the way from the east. At the least he should ride through the gardens. Then we were on the PCN to the Little Guilin. The west is where I live, so I guided the group. At Little Guilin the rain fell and we adjourned to a Malay kopitiam for an early lunch and fellowship (and theological discussion abut generational curse) till the rain stopped. Then we headed to the former granite quarry at Bukit Batok Park and from there proceeded to the PCN that links the Bukit Batok to the Ulu Pandan PCN. Our original plan was to do the Ulu Pandan PCN to Ghim Moh for lunch but rain altered our plans and we called it quits after we did the lovely Teban Garden overhead steel bridge. We reached my home by 12.15pm. A wonderful splendid lovely morning with pastors! God’s way is always better – the rain forced us pastors to spend as much time time seated around the table of fellowship as on our Brompton foldies; and it cooled the day which otherwise would likely have been direct sun on us by mid-morning.
What a blessing it is to carry my grandchild and look at her lovely face. She moves her mouth, or looks around with searching eyes, and charming smiles. Children are a gift from the Lord to be celebrated, to praise God for. I went to Toowoomba, Queensland to spend some time with family, to see Claire the newborn, and to play with my other livelier four year old grand-daughter, Chloe. Chloe hardly spoke any English sentence when we visited her in April 2016. Now she cannot stop chatting in Australian English. Full of movement, giggles, energy and ideas, she is such a pleasure to play with. But I do get worn out after two hours of non-stop action with her.
I stayed about eight days but before I arrived, my wife had already been there three weeks to help out in my daughter in law’s recovery after childbirth. After I have left, my wife will continue to help till the end of September when the Korean mother in law will stay with them for about ten days. Its impossible to get domestic helpers in Australia. My wife’s routine is to help prepare meals, do some housework, bring Chloe to play school at about 9am, and she does shopping for groceries, and later drive Chloe home from school at about 5pm, and finally have fun with Chloe. Not exactly easy but what a privilege to bless, to help and to serve!
During my stay there we drove around town visiting parks, shopping areas, cafes and walking around the neighbourhood. Temperatures vary between 10C to 18C with windchill. While we were there, we were able to shop for some hiking jackets and clothing for our next hike in Jeju Island. The prices were reasonable with sale discounts of about 40%.
We were very thankful to God for the relaxed and joyful time with family and moving around at a much slower pace. It was therapeutic.
This is a very late post. Like three years late. After James Creasman went back to the US, I wanted to post my appreciation but I never got around to it. Today, Seng Chor and I had lunch with him and we updated each other on what has been happening in our lives in the past three years since James closed the chapter of his ministry in Singapore and move back to the States. It was so good to re-connect with James.
I got to know James through Church Resource Ministries, Singapore (CRMS). I signed up for a Focused Leaders Network that he was leading together with Seng Chor and How Beng. I benefitted a great deal from the sessions together with others and from my personal mentoring sessions with James. Later I continued with the facilitators’ training and together with others led a few Focused Leaders network groups. Later I was invited to join the CRMS exco and served with other godly leaders for several years.
James was like a paraclete (one called alongside to strengthen, encourage, guide). He loved God and was devoted to the word of God. Gentle, encouraging, gracious, humble, and a good listener, he was easy to relate to and confide in. He never misused his office and he was a wise and discerning mentor. He led and encouraged the expansion of the CRMS into Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam and China. He inspired and mobilised the exco and other facilitators to lead networks in these countries. He excelled in networking and building friendships. Near the end of his time in Singapore, he sought for a few years to seek locals to take over CRMS, and finally succeeded in doing so, as CRMS is now run by local pastors and marketplace leaders. He has advanced the cause of mentoring in the church. Now the main concentration of his ministry is in Vietnam but he is based in Los Angeles as both his and his wife’s aging parents are in need of help. Missionaries like him are a rare breed but the Singapore church was blessed to have him and his ministry based here for all those years.