first things first

i always feel i should apologize for not writing here but is there a need to if no one even reads it. maybe the one i should apologize to is myself –

on to the post.

November went past in a blur. Busy days, lazy days, happy days, not so happy days. December began. wanted to blog about VBS but curse my lazy fingers, i never got around to doing so. last week was youth camp (theme was First things first: Consider Your Ways, Haggai 1:6-7) and it was fUN. and now it’s almost Christmas, and i thought i should really get to posting something on me blog, mainly for myself, so i’ll never forget the many happy things that has happened.

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FIRST THINGS FIRST this photo makes me so happy. #Protosinmyheart  < i came up with this hashtag on my ig photos but i doubt anyone got the double meaning . Protos was my team name and the first meaning is that my team is in my heart. Protos is also the Greek word for First, so it means #(First)inmyheart. yay im so clever right. joanna. who cares HA.

 

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9/10 of Protos
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3/5 of senior girls
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Ally. made so many jabs at each other for all the time we’ve known each other. but i’m glad we’re friends, and maybe something even more. something like family.

 

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’99 girls with legit the best assistant camp master. 

IM SO SURE he wanted to sleep after finale night but cos we were being a nuisance no we weren’t he took us out for pRATA @ 2AM so touching also cos we weren’t allowed to play games at night on the campsite blah i love my youth leaders cos they care for us spiritually AND outwardly, in the things they do for us, even if it means giving up precious sleep to take us out for prata. best people.

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heart shape heart shape heart shape

best people ever.

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Protos and Rishon!!!!

so much love for yall. This camp was so smooth and peaceful, no fights no crying no arguments no clashes. I think that was the highlight for me; even though there were two teams, the rivalry wasn’t as intense as previous years. and I LIKE. i really truly enjoyed myself those 5 short days.

decisions made, commitments shared. I’m so grateful for HANNAH at the final sharing before we left camp. i’m so glad we were paired up, the considering of our ways, mutual understanding and encouragement. bomb. I love her sm.

i learned so much this year. from devotions, i really learned alot in the small senior girls group. and even from the morning exercise. even though i almost fainted after the first day’s exercise HAHA
sure the exercises were tough but i know they were for my good and it would make me strong. No pain, no gain.

2 more days to Christmas. 8 days to new year and of course. my birthday yas. 17 cycles of 365 days is coming to an end. time to do some emo reflections.

 

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was blind but now i see

Some things ‘happened’ and having time to reflect and re-focus my view on my Christian life changed me, a rebel, to lay down my arms, to follow Christ, to desire to be changed into Christ-likeness. 

I have changed.

I want to live in a way that just by my behaviour and manner of life, people will take note that I have been with Jesus. I want to live to bring glory to my Saviour in everything I do.
I want to daily pursue the One who loved me and gave Himself for me.

My new journey has just begun but already I feel lonely.

like I am alone in all that I think and feel now.

The ones I called my closest friends and the ones that I felt I loved best ridicule me. To a certain extent, they think I’m crazy. They pity me for choosing this boring path of life. Maybe they even dislike me now.

I don’t want to be in the company of friends that have no fear of God. I no longer wish to spend time with people that claim to know God but whose actions deny Him. // Titus 1:16

It’s not that I dislike my friends. In fact, I now wish to spend time with them but to talk to them about the things of God.

And if I don’t want to hang with them, it’s just that there are no common interests/ factors anymore.
I am not cool like them anymore. I no longer listen to the rock music i used to, I made a decision to stop swearing. I purposed to dress in a modest way, to love God and I want my life to only show surrender to Him. But all my old friends are continuing in the old way of living, an ungodly walk. // Amos 3:3 //

Before I told some of my friends of the change in me, I told God that my friendships are all His, He could do whatever He wanted to do with my friendships. But I see now that it is not a one-time decision but rather a day by day constant prayerful yielding and surrendering. I constantly find myself struggling, having fallen in the erroneous prideful thinking that I may reach a form of perfection, or quench the sinfulness in me. But at the same time knowing my error, I have discovered the peace and joy, realizing the genuineness that I am weak but thank God, He is strong.

It is my weakness that will allow God to use His power to change and work in me. A strong person needs no help. A weak person does. And I am so weak. His strength is made perfect in my weakness. “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 KJV

 // how strangely wonderful it is to acknowledge my weakness; the very quality in which I despise myself so often for is the same channel in which God chose for His strength to do a perfecting work in my life, if I will let Him //

I have decided to follow Jesus and though none go with me still I will follow.

I am confident that to leave my life in the Hands that bled to save it,

are the safest Hands to keep it.

Regional Student Convention 2015: Day 5 😭

Opened my eyes and wondered why the sun was already up, instead of the past few mornings where we got up before the sun did. I looked at my watch and jumped up in shock. 7am. Our roommate who was supposed to collect breakfast didn’t wake up. As the eldest student in that room, I got dressed and went to get breakfast for the room in her place and woke the rest up. we were slightly late for the last rally. During the rally time, it was awards after awards after awards. The results of the mixed quartet event were out and our names were called up: Ethan, Janelle, Jireh, and Joanna. And to our greatest surprise, we placed 2nd! Jan and I were screaming hahaha literally shocked cus we didn’t expect to be placed that high even after our stumbles.

   

 Our supervisor was at the other end of the stage waiting for us and Jan and I jumped into her hug as she told us how proud she was of us. 2nd place! We were thrilled, exhilarated, blessed. 

I was really eager about the photography awards because I knew the scenic photo I had entered was one of the finalists but I didn’t know which spot I had secured myself. When the results were finally read out, I found that I was the first place winner for the senior color-scenic category! The RSC experience couldn’t have closed better for me, winning a first place medal.

 this was my scenic picture, taken with my iPhone 4 😂
When the Reverend finally announced RSC 2015 officially closed, I felt a twinge of sadness, I was super gonna miss all of this. When rally was over, I took a few pictures with some new friends I had made over the 5 days but sadly, I didn’t manage to find all of them.

Nicole from LAP

Isabelle from LAP with Jan and I

Head prefect of All Saints AA, Jensen

Gem from LAP

We had to rush to change out of our uniforms, eat our lunch and then get our bags and luggages down to the lobby because our coach would leave at 1.15pm. I managed to make one last new friend at the last minute haha after bringing down our luggages and haversacks, we waited at the hotel lobby and this kid and I just struck up a conversation.

 Joshua from All Saints AA
We were all reluctant about leaving so early. why must the coach leave at 1.15? Can’t it be at 3 or 6pm? Man I’m gonna miss this all. Are you going for the next RSC? Hope to see you next year! 

The coach ride back to SG seemed really fast compared to when we were on the way to KL.

 We made one stop between KL and SG. And it was only 4.45pm when we stopped. Asking the guide how long more we were going to take before reaching SG, she replied much to our dismay, roughly one and a half hours more. Despite our disappointment, we still had to settle dinner. We went to the toilets first though, forewarned of the consequences of not answering nature’s call earlier in the bus with one of our guys having to jump around the coach trying to hold in his pee. Bumped into another RSC School contingent otw back to SG at the dinner stop. Made us feel better knowing we weren’t alone haha.

All too soon, we hit the customs and found ourselves back at SG. One of our guys thought he had lost his passport after leaving the SG customs but thankfully, he found it under his seat.

Most of us alighted at khatib mrt at about 7.30pm, back at where we first gathered to go to RSC. We said our goodbyes and sadly made our own separate ways to our separate destinations.

Personally, I felt sad cus after all this months of going to school and developing friendships, this was sort of the end of wearing the school uniform and seeing my school mates regularly, I mean, till the next time I participate in RSC again. In retrospect, I’m thankful to God for all the new experiences I had (this being my first RSC), meeting new friends that were super awesome, all the wins we made as individual students and as the whole school contingent. The messages were rather doctrinally sound though worship time wasn’t. And for all the ups, I’m also grateful for all the downs, when we got on each other’s goat when the pressure started building up, snapping at each other and the mistakes made during the process of preparing for this rather major event and during the RSC itself. Though I didn’t achieve what I wanted in some areas, I guess it’s not important what I have lost, but rather what I have gained. Although I got pretty exhausted and on the verge of crying at some points, I had loads of crazy fun those 5 days and I’m looking forward and starting to countdown to next year’s RSC!


   #RSC2016

Pre-Regional Student Convention: Sunday, 23rd August, 2015

Had church in the morning, my mind was all over the place, the excitement all building up.We boarded the coach at aroundd 1.20pm and began our approximately 6 hour journey.


  When we passed the SG and M’sia customs, we ran to the toilets (we were needing to pee so badly  just kidding I don’t know why we even ran but lol) and I didn’t know my bag was unzipped and my pencil case fell out. It was only after I boarded the coach again, one of our guys handed me my stationery bag and asked if it was mine. I was like 😱 yes where did you even find it. He said it dropped from your bag when we were running to the toilet. My heart skipped a beat. My bag unzipped. And my Passport. My. Passport. Was. Inside. I checked frantically and fortunately, thank God, it didn’t fall out. We stopped once for a short toilet break and another time for dinner. We had burgers at Burger King.

Jan, Kat, Naomi and me!

 waiting to board the coach after dinner

  Reached Shaftsbury Serviced Suites at about 7.30pm.

 My roommates, Naomi, Kat, and Jan, were all keen on going for a swim but we had to settle some admin stuff with our supervisor. Okay I’ll admit we were horrible and rushed our rather stressed out supervisor with all the admin stuff we had left undone so that we could go for a swim. We finished it up in like 20 minutes and headed to the pool. We weren’t rly sure if the other schools participating in the RSC were there already so we were pretty grateful for the darkness of the night that partially hid our faces from any curious onlooker peering at a group of laughing girls splashing and jumping into the pool. After the swim, we went back to the room (not before discovering how inconvenient it was because each room was only given one key card that allowed access to the lift lobby, to press the level you wanted to go to, and to open your room door. ONE CARD for a room of 6 people. If you didn’t have the card, you had to run ard and find the person. If the person who had the card was upstairs in the room and you were at the lobby, the person had to come down and pick you up with the key card cus you have no way to press the lift level without the tapping the key card on the card reader.) and we had a shower. Had a brief run through of the next day’s programme with our supervisor and we all slept rather early that night because we all knew the next day was gonna be the Beginning of everything.


    all the girls and female sponsors and supervisors!! 😍

Church Camp 2015

here I am, finally, in this more than a week long neglected space. 

Been catching up with sleep and laying in bed, day dreaming and thinking about church camp 😂   

I had a rlly great time at church camp, the theme was “The Godly Family”. The icebreakers were hilarious at times (the icebreaker master was the hilarious one actly), the games interesting, the fellowship was the best 😂 it was rly nice to spend time with 3 other teenaged girls at camp, we shared one room, and we got to know each other better, laughing together abt every crazy thing and just having a great great time.    

        Leandra, me, JY, and Han  super fail jumpshot cus the sand was too soft 😂   I think the best part of the resort’s facilities was okay I’m not trying to be silly the toilet paper. Super soft okay. Macham like silk toilet paper. 

The coach ride to and fro was rather smooth it was only towards the beach area that the road became rather bumpy. But other than that, it was a super memorable camp. 😉

Can’t believe church camp is over already 😭 so looking forward to the next one! 
  

  Little red riding hood      
   
     

Weekend updates

Last Saturday, my YG had our second quarterly youth outing. 

 We went cycling, something which I haven’t done for quite awhile, at Punggol Park. It was super fun especially so cus my one of my closest friends joined the outing  

This was taken about halfway through the ride. We three and a few others were always ways ahead of the others so we had to stop to wait for the others to catch up. 😂

 It was super hot that day, and there was not much shelter around the park.  Das me at the left, middle is my big bro with his NS hairstyle, and on the right, my awesome Youth Leader with his cool shades

We cycled for about an hour and a half including the frequent stops we had to make to wait for the rest to catchup it was blazing hot and fortunately there was this small water park which I believe was built for days like last Saturday and a few of us walked through the water and got ourselves wet which we found out was a very good idea cus when we began to cycle again, the water in our clothes made the wind we felt cool. It took us about another 20 minutes from the water park to reach the place where we had lunch. First time ever I finished my drink that my brother up-sized for me Clap for me please thank you   

Selfie while queuing to place food orders cus we’re awesome. 

Youth leader’s wife came while we were having our lunch at KFC. She brought with her a cake cus it was one of our guys birthday (: sang happy birthday gobbled down our lunch and the cake cus we had to hurry back to return the bicycles. We rented them for 3 hours, started from 10.15 and had to get back by 1.15. Where we were having lunch would take us about 30 minutes ride to get back to the bike rental place and we only finished lunch at about 1pm 😂

we reached back slightly late but haha it was good enough, super fun racing with my doppelgänger and being able to cycle with my friends. 

It was super hot and after we returned the bicycles, some of us went to get drinks from the supermarket beside the bike rental place. Here’s us, pretending to buy soya milk, but really, we were just trying to cool ourselves off in the refrigerator.

Cooled off near a pond where we saw turtles and on of them was planking or maybe dying from being frozen by the sunFortunately for the poor turtle, he was saved from drying up in the sun my friend sprayed water on him, saving his life

After that we caught the bus to the interchange And took another bus from the interchange to home. 

The cool kid beside me came to my place, tried out my piano for a few minutes and then we left house to  play badminton cus we booked a court  at ace the place. Played from 3.30-5.30, came home, took a bath and this happened: It hurt quite abit on Sunday but it’s bearable now. It’s not so red anymore and I’d say the pain and the tan was worth the fun I had with the people around me. 

Here’s to looking forward to more of such good days ahead 😉