Tuesday, June 30, 2015. Sometimes life can just be good to you. I have been visitor in Asia over the past three days - visiting Hong Kong. And my host has just been great! Why not praise good things or people - and praise God for them, since he is the one who is behind all, what has been created?
The Four Noble Ones …
You could call it Asian hospitality. And it can be fantastic. We had lunch with the family of my host. I had some time to walk along the bay and to visit the Art Museum - with exhibitions from traditional Chinese art to modern installations with videos. Thank you, artist. Thank you, God!
Going into an exhibition is usually very inspiring to me. This time, I was confronted with “the four Gentlemen” or “four noble ones” - Chinese painting from around 970-1200 AD. It refers to the orchid, the bamboo, the chrysanthemum, and the plum blossom, and they stand for noble character features as well as for the four seasons of the year. For me, it was great to think about what noble character features I have, and where I lack these features and should start to change and further develop.
We all know that the New Testament also asks us to develop noble behaviour patterns. But in the New Testament these things do not come out of us, but they come from the Holy Spirit who will, if we live with him, change us and guide us. The Holy Spirit is developing our character, and our whole personality is a part of it, with our daily decisions as well as our habits, feelings and all we say and do.
Somehow God has clarified to me that it is mainly my own responsibility to do well. I cannot give this to others. I need to evolve, to change, to improve. But I do not need to do it alone, and I cannot succeed if I just search my own strength. It is him, the Lord, who can achieve what is needed. His Holy Spirit can help, and his power can do so much! We can say thank you for every step, which he helps us to go. This is expressed by the praise psalms, for example by Psalm 100:
1 A Psalm for giving thanks. Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! 2 Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into his presence with singing! 3 Know that the Lord, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his;1 we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name! 5 For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations. (Psalm 100)
I received a lot of friendliness over the past days. That is good and worth some praise. Lord, you give us challenges, but you also give us rest. I was desperately searching for true rest last week, now I found it. Thank you, Lord! Thank you so much. (RWEP) ... more texts