Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A christian father's chronicle (2011 Read through the New Testament)

For those dads who are preparing their families to read through the Bible, here is my little contribution for 2011. It is a plan for reading through the New Testament in the entire year of 2011 (minus off weekends, so only 1 chapter a day on weekdays).

You can use it as you deem fit.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Nicodemus (Dr. John Piper)

John wrote some very beautiful poems, and I am drawing some extractions here:

O that your beauty, sharp and clear,
Would penetrate our darkness here.
Make windows in the things of earth:
This is the joy of second birth. 

(Nicodemus, Part 1, 2 December 2007)

“He came to Jesus, Father, hands
Outstretched, and pleaded that he come
And heal his son. For just a crumb,
That’s all he asked. But Jesus stayed
Away. Instead he spoke, and made
The child completely well. With one
Mere mighty word, ‘Go now; your son
Will live,’ the deed was done. The boy
Is free. I saw him, and the joy
Of his whole house. It was the voice,
My father, just the mighty choice
Of Jesus, and the boy was free. 


And, Father, that
Was when it happened. Not the bread;
It was the whisper. I was dead,
And Jesus breathed on me his word,
That I might feed on what I heard
And be set free. And, Father, I
Am free. I’m not afraid to die,
Or live, or take a stand for him. 


And now as we set candle two
In place, dear Lord, please come and do
This miracle of grace. Pour out
On us this life, and end the drought
Of anxious thirst for human praise.
Undo this fear of man and raise
Us from the dead. And we will then
Exult that we are born again. 

(Nicodemus, Part 2, 9 December 2007)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Grails Acegi plugin and Spring Security Core Plugin

As you might have suspected it: I am writing again on technical subject simply because I want to save some hours for you folks out there in the wild.

Yup, I was trying to read the instructions found here in Grails.org for using Acegi plugin.

If you are in a rush, then just read this line: The above tutorial is very outdated and you should probably not waste your life following it anymore.

OK, here is what I did (removed some path information to protect some privacy) :

# grails install-plugin acegi
Welcome to Grails 1.3.5 - http://grails.org/
Licensed under Apache Standard License 2.0
Grails home is set to: \tools\grails-1.3.5

Base Directory: test3
Resolving dependencies...
Dependencies resolved in 1094ms.
Running script \tools\grails-1.3.5\scripts\InstallPlugin.groovy
Environment set to development
Resolving plugin acegi. Please wait...

:: problems summary ::
                [NOT FOUND  ] org.grails.plugins#acegi;0.6!acegi.zip (219ms)

        ==== grailsCentral: tried



                ::              FAILED DOWNLOADS            ::

                :: ^ see resolution messages for details  ^ ::


                :: org.grails.plugins#acegi;0.6!acegi.zip


Error resolving plugin [name:acegi, group:org.grails.plugins, version:latest.int
Plugin not found for name [acegi] and version [not specified]

As you can see, I cannot download the plugin. Heh, no problem especially after you have read this article and have some inspiration? We download the latest version from codehause (at this point of writing, I can find the best candidate to be here).

Guess what? Installation was great. But when you try to create-auth-domains, there are no domain classes created. It is all empty!

OK, now the right way. The right way is to move to Spring Security Core Plugin! The reference document can be found here and for those who just want to jump into it, please go straight to here.

I really wished that the article/blogs/whatever authors of acegi would just help the village to update their materials and point to Spring Security Core Plugin as it is already stated in Grails Acegi site that "You're encouraged to use the new Spring Security Core plugin instead which is the official Grails security plugin and will be actively maintained."

Have fun!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Somewhere over the rainbow....

I have been having this tune in my mind since last night and the best one that I came across in YouTube is here.

I am also embedding here. I like it to be sung a cappella, rather than with all the instruments destroying the clear voice tone. It is the second time when Connie sang the phrase 'Somewhere over the rainbow...' that will tug your heart strings...

Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high,
There's a land that I heard of
Once in a lullaby.

Somewhere over the rainbow
Skies are blue,
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true.

Someday I'll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far
Behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That's where you'll find me.

Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly.
Birds fly over the rainbow.
Why then, oh why can't I?

If happy little bluebirds fly
Beyond the rainbow
Why, oh why can't I?

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Quite a fun read

I have been wandering on YouTube and came across the fine playing of Hilary Hahn.

And yes, also enjoyed some bits of her amusing writings on What to Do with Your Instrument When You're Bored.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

A father's chronicle (One of my favourite shot)

This was taken on 11 June 2010. I still like it very much.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

21km Army Half Marathon

I am running again....

Here is the route marked in blue...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A father's chronicle (Hair for Hope)

I wanted to do something different this year. One of my wish list came true today. I went for the Hair for Hope event and supported Children's Cancer Foundation.

As I was not able to register online, I was one of the walk-in shavees. I arrived before 10 am, just in case I missed the chance to do this meaning activity.

(Extracted from a form of HFH 2010)

The shaving of heads represents each child's ordeal and fight against cancer, as treatment of cancer, including chemotheraphy, can cause hair loss. Through this symbolic gesture, CCF aims to achieve the following objectives:

1. Create awareness of childhood cancer in Singapore
2. Demostrate to children with cancer and their families that they are not alone in their fight against cancer
3. Boost the self-esteem of children with hair lose by sending the message that there is nothing wrong with losing their hair or being bald
4. Raise funds to help children with cancer and their families
5. Build a community of support for children with cancer and their families

Here are some shots that I took.

That's me.... before...

That's me... after...

I was walking with Theophilus... and here is a snaplet of our conversation.

Theophilus: Dad, I will do what you did when I grow up.
Dad: Why only when you grow up? You are afraid of being tease at in school?
Theophilus: Yup, I think so.
Dad: It's OK. When you grow up, you can make your own decision and you can do the same when you really want to do it, OK?

I know he has been thinking a lot of what I have done today.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

A christian father's chronicle (The Sorrows of Fathers and Sons)

Just read this. I think it has a ring of truth: it reveals a kind of bond between fathers and sons that is the foundation of pain, not its removal.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Preparing for a journey this year (A father's chronicle)

There were many things that I wanted to do when I was young. I wanted to do research. More specifically, I wanted to do computer simulation of drug effectiveness to Leukaemia - and only for children.

I do not think I can do that now. There was once, I wrote to a local university and they just drop the idea of having me to do my PhD. I am "too old".

Anyhow, I want to prepare for another journey this year. I want to embark on a journey with my family (especially with Theophilus). I wanted to volunteer in Children's Cancer Foundation. I wanted to bring joy and laughter to children who are suffering from cancer.

Yan is so wonderful. She passed me a pamplet from CCF (Children's Cancer Foundation) tonight knowing my heart's desire to embark on it this year. I am delighted. Thank you so much, Yan!

I wrote in to inquire tonight... I hope they will respond favourably and that I will do what my heart is drawn to do. To open a new window for Theophilus - the world is more than just earning money, studying hard and getting all the good things in life.

We can love. We are fully capable to love people.

When he was young, I have already taught him: Don't love things. Love people. Now, we are going to move from internalization to externalization.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A father's chronicle (Letter received)

I posted the snail mail yesterday, and Theophilus received it today.

He was so happy. Came into my room and gave me a big hug. I noticed that he wrote a message at the bottom of the mail - "Me 2!"

Yes, my last sentence....

Remember always - I love you the way you are.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A book

I have just completed a book over the holiday. OK, I took quite a while since it was a good book to reflect on so many things within. A very thin book.


This is really a book worth reading. I have been reading many of such genre.  Old man sharing about life. But this one is good. I can identify with so many of the things that he wrote. I wished everybody will read it.

I have highlighted many parts of this book. There is one in the chapter 'Being "Productive"' that I want to share:

We live in a world that seems to be lacking kindness and compassion..... How many people in the audience bring pleasure to the lives of another living being every day? ... So what does it mean to be productive? ... But what if we just sit with someone and show compassion? ... I don't need to change the world. But the day is better when I am able to share an intimate moment with someone, listen in a way someone has not been listened to before, or tell a story that gets someone thinking differently. Then I feel my day is productive, and I feel grateful for having lived it.... When you show compassion - and when you receive it - you are being productive. I hope no one will be able to convince you otherwise.

We ought to read and think about these words.

Monday, February 15, 2010

A father's chronicle (A tradition to be handled down)

Today is the second day of the Lunar New Year. It marks a milestone for me. I am beginning a tradition. A tradition of writing. Writing from a father to his son. Not the electronic form, but the old-fashioned hand written letter. Posted. Snail mail.

I have been wanting to write to Theophilus for quite some time now. Like what I wrote in my letter to him:

I think it is a strange thing to have a father writing to his son when all he needs to do is called out his son's name. But, I think writing is a very precious thing. Our writing shows our inner character and thoughts. Even the strength of our hand writing protrays or betrays our many emotions.

So, I have started on a new journey. A journey of words. A journey with my son. And hopefully, from this point forth, he will hand this tradition down to our sons to come. Letters between father and son. To share on our thoughts, our world view on so many topics. Of our struggles. Our failures and success. Our hopes and our prayers.

Today, I started a tradition.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

A christian father's chronicle (Proverbs 12:1)

Last night Yan was reading Proverbs to the children.

Proverbs 12:1 (New International Version)

1 Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
       but he who hates correction is stupid.

The last word caught Gracia's attention. She has been disobedient the whole day and when the word was read, she cried! Literally, she could not contain it. She does not want to be stupid. She wants to clever. A clever girl. And she wonders whether she will be 'not stupid anymore'.

We prayed together as a family and seek God's wisdom to love discipline. When we love the discipline that God place in our lives, we love Him. Not that we will enjoy the discipline while we go through it, but we have the safe assurance that He does it for our good and it will turn out that way in the end.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

A father's chronicle (Joining a club)

Last week, Theophilus went for an assessment. I guess it must be very popular to join the Robotics club that's why they need the children to go through an assessment.

Anyhow, he went through the test and I must say that he came home quite devastated.

They said very plainly that since there are limited number of places in the club, those who didn't pass the test should "get lost". That hit him quite hard and I guess were really quite a cruel word tool to other children as well. He cried when he reached home recalling quite a few of those questions he was unable to do.

I sat there quietly as Yan relate the incident to me. I guess those questions must have needed his spatial imagination quite a lot. Anyway, we comforted him and assured him that if he is serious about it, we could always do Robotics on our own (yes, we do have Lego Mindstorm and I even developed an IDE for him so that he can program the brick). Furthermore, we could even sign up as independent contestant to compete with his school too. It all depends on how determine he is on this learning.

This evening, I received a suprise message on my mobile.

Dad, igot accepted in2 robotics.

A short SMS. He wanted to share with me his joy. I rejoiced too. It is what he wanted.

Just before he sleeps, I asked him

So, you want to learn computer programming?

And he said 'yes'.

Being in the IT line, I really do not like the idea that my kids end up in this line too. Then again, I wonder whether I should block the way entirely and not leave it to his heart's desire.

Congras, son. I am happy for you.