Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Frailty of Life

Can you imagine what it would be like to kiss your partner good night and then to wake up and find that he/she has passed away? This is exactly what happened to a friend. His wife was awakened in the wee hours of the morning when she heard him groan, as if in a bad dream. By the time she had put their baby aside and turned back to him, he had already passed out. When the parademics came, he was pronounced dead - just like that. A husband and father's life was cut short, in his prime.

Job 14:1-2 says "Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble. He springs up like a flower and withers away; like a fleeting shadow, he does not endure." All of us have to die one day. That is a sure thing. We'll never understand why God chose to bring this man, well-loved by all, back to heaven. But we do know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

At our friend's wake last night, all who gave an eulogy spoke of his gentle spirit, his willing heart and his ever-ready smile. That's exactly, how J & I remember him. He was a man who lived his life on this earth well - serving the Lord with joy and gladness. And now, He is in a much better place with his heavenly Father. Whilst we rejoice in that knowledge, we regret the lost years and mourn this temporary separation. But we know we will see him again one day. God bless you, Kumar.

Romans 14:8
"If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord."

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Home Makeover

It's wonderful living in tropical country, especially when I read about the below freezing temperatures that the Northern Hemisphere countries are experiencing at the moment. Brr....

But the constant sunshine, coupled with heavy rainfall extracts its price on one's home. Cracks and greenish mold appear on the outside walls. J & I decided that it was time our home got a makeover for the new year. Nothing drastic - a couple of fresh coats of paint and remedial works. Fortunately, our friends had just completed renovation on their new home and we were able to secure the services of her contractor.

Day 1 of construction (I finally get to say this line which I hear ever so often on Restaurant Makeover) is prep work. As with all things, starting off on a clean slate is important. Dirt, sediments and peeling paint needs to be stripped off before applying new paint, otherwise the new paint doesn't last. Fortunately, we had bright sunny weather in the morning as the painters cleaned the walls and surfaces with the aid of a heavy duty water pump.

The painters have absolutely no fear of heights.

Kess can't resist checking out the water pump machine.

In the late afternoon, it rained cats and dogs. Fortunately, they had finished with cleaning the walls. The painters move inside to prep the interior walls, skimming over cracks and holes.

My bright orange feature wall now resembles a modern art painting.

At the end of Day 1, I'm exhausted - between supervising the painters, supervising Kess (so that she doesn't disturb the painters), working on a project and cleaning up after the workers leave.

Day 2 of construction - the workers are here bright and early. Taking advantage of the sunshine, they continue with the outdoor work - fixing the cracked cement edges on the roof and applying a layer of sealent on the exterior walls.

Like clockwork the heavens open up and rain falls down in the late afternoon. Hopefully, the sealant had time to dry. Again, the workers are forced to do work indoors. It disrupts their work pattern, but Mother Nature often has different plans to ours and it's up to us to adapt.

End of Day 2 - My home resembles a construction site with paint cans, ladders and a muddied garden! When the workers leave, it's time to clean up again. Sigh...

It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home. ~Author Unknown