Thursday, Zishan came round and we played some duets on our guitars for 40 min. Then, Patrick came and we had our first one-to-one meeting.. very official 🙂
Friday, Risa, her parents and sister came round for a bit and Jens, Tab and Ruth joined us. It was good to see them all again (Photos here). I then had to rush off to the weekend away that I was helping out with. It took us 3 hours to get to Wickham (south-east London) when it should usually take one and a half hours. We took two cars and one minibus – about 24 people in total. We had a nice meal with Liz (kairos worker)’s parents and were then dispatched to our various host families. I was in a nice family – the parents were Bill and Dawn and they had two children; Howard and Louise. Cheng-shi and I stayed with them and they looked after us very well.
On Saturday, we started the day with a Bible study on John 4 (the Samaritan woman by the well) which I lead. Later on in the day, Lisa lead a Bible study on John 10 (the gate and the Good shepherd). Our Bible study group consisted of people from Taiwan, China, Korea and Japan. There was a Japanese lady who was very eager to ask questions and also a Chinese lady who was very interested in engaging with the passages. Most people in the group seemed to understand well, which was something of a relief as these are quite difficult passages. We focused on how Jesus provides us with satisfaction – life to the full.
After the Bible study in the morning, we went on a short walk, had lunch and then went on a long and slightly muddy walk through some nearby forest (I didn’t know such existed within the M25). We then had the second Bible study and a meal. After this, we played various games (Jenga and I taught a Polish girl Othello). We were then taught various Greek dances by Tim, one of the Kairos workers for this year.
On Sunday morning, we went to the local church and were given a very friendly welcome. We watched some bell-ringing and joined in the service. We went for a short walk (20 min) afterwards and I chatted to a guy from Taiwan who has been looking seriously at Christianity for 6 months who said he was ready to become a Christian! I remember the first time I met him, he was not at all interested but then we got talking and I explained that I studied the Bible somewhat scientifically. I drew him a few ways of representing the trinity, and it seems from then on that even though I didn’t see him much, he went to one of the churches in Cambridge and discovered that the Bible actually makes sense scientifically. Praise God!
Cheng-shi and I went to another house for some Sunday lunch before setting off and finally returning home about quarter past six.
Photos from the weekend can be found here
Yesterday evening we all went out for a meal to celebrate Tabitha’s 22nd birthday. We went to a Singaporian restruant near to the Catholic church by Parker’s Piece. The food was very good and filling, but the waitresses were very unfriendly. We had asked for the party room upstairs but they said it was unavailable as there had been a party there the previous day and they couldn’t be bothered to clear it up.
Had a very busy day today – 4 lectures and 3 and a half hours of sitting in the library reading. The lectures were all good, and I’m really enjoying the 4 lectures I have about the history of the Jews between 200BC and 200 AD. I had my first Greek language paper which was really quite difficult. Basically the lecturer just read through the Greek of Mark, giving us a translation. He threw out notes about various grammatical constructions at such a speed that even if I had understood what he was talking about, I wouldn’t have been able to write half of them down. I met up with Anna during lectures and then went back to hers to have some lunch.
I then came home and was about to go to bed when I got a call from Tabs saying that Yumi had just come in from Norwich, so I went round to see her. She then phoned Ruth and we all met up and went back round to mine. Anna then came round and I cooked some egg fried rice with sweet and sour chicken. It was good to see all those guys again 🙂
After this, I went to CU where there were perhaps 10 people. We’ve started to study 1 Peter which is quite a fun book. After this, I decided to do my first laundry load of term and realised that I hadn’t got any more washing powder. I nipped over the road to Sainsburys and bought some, but when I came back I could not turn the lock on the black iron gate which guards the entrance to my staircase. I tried reaching behind to turn the lock, as I always do and finally tried putting the code in and kicking it. Eventually I got the porter to try to open it but he could not manage, and so he called out maintenance. After about 30 minutes they managed to open the gate by removing the lock… How strange.
It’s been a busy few days but I’ve not really been able to do much work! Yesterday I messed around quite a bit. In the evening I had a Bible study with Cheng-Shi which was very exciting and we ate togeather. After that, I met up with Ruth, Felicity, Serena and Jonathan from Emma and went to the Henry Martyn Trust meeting where we met other people who’d been away in far-flung places over the summer.
Today I had Greek Bible Study in the morning and then three lectures. The same lecturer gave all three so he must have thought I’d been stalking him, especially as one is meant for second years! In the afternoon I slept and read a little before going to Jesus’ Chapel to hear Patrick do a short talk – very good explanation of heaven and hell.
I’ve been asked to help lead on a weekend away for international students this weekend which should be good fun!
Here are some fun links I’ve seen the past few days: The Sacrament of Coffee. Also How to Become a Bishop.
I’ve not done any work for the past two days. Saturday was spent seeing friends – in the morning, I went to see Mary and her friend Zoe at Queens. I was in China with Mary so it was good to catch up with her again. On the way out I had a nice chat to my friend Andy Grenfelt who I’ve not seen for a while. I was then going to go on to a day about Christianity in France, but didn’t for a number of reasons. Instead, I went home and messed around until the Sidney/New Hall/Fitz international tea party at 3.
The tea-party was good fun, we had 3 people come, all from Sidney. I think it was the first time I’ve met a person from Lithuania – he’s a first year mathmo/compsci and seems very keen! After this, about 8 of us went out to see Pride and Prejudice at the cinema. I thought this new adaptation was quite well done especially for the modern audience, with whom the love vs. money dilemma is not as clear as to the original readers. We had dinner at Burger King because it was raining outside and none of us had bought our coats. Even having dinner did not stop the rain, so we got soaked as we walked home. Once we had dried off and changed etc, Tabs and I went to see Zishan and we had a good evening with him playing a strange Indian game (can’t remember the name) which is kind of a cross between pool and tiddlywinks but using draughts pieces. It was quite good fun, even though I was not very good at it.
Sunday morning I went to see my friend Toby get baptised at City church. When I arrived I discovered Alistare from Sidney was also getting baptised too, so that was good. I stayed around afterwards seeing loads of friends and then myself and Patrick stayed for the student meal. I went home and messed around for a few hours and then went to the Holy Trinity International Tea-party at a really nice house on Park Parade, overlooking Jesus Green. Cheng-shi came along to this and I also met a really nice Ugandan pastor called Kenneth and caught up with Min from Korea who I’ve not seen for ages.
After this, I went to Eden for the evening service where there was a Mexican dude speaking about the work his Christian charity does amongst street kids in poor places in Mexico. It sounded very good, although he did speak for quite a long time – he’s obviously very passionate!
Term started on Thursday, so I managed to spend about 7h on work – 6 of those in bed with my laptop and a pile of books; making notes and doing research etc. The other hour was running around the UL collecting books – I took my first 4 out which make me feel like a real 3rd year!
In the evening, I went to the Barn and met a really nice guy from Taiwan called Cheng-Shi. We chatted for the whole time about the Bible and he was very full of questions about Jesus and Christianity. About half-way through, Frank, a fellow taiwanese guy with whom I had spoken at some length about 6 months ago came in and helped explain some things in Chinese! He’s been going to some Bible Studies at StAG and seems to know a lot now. It was all very exciting. I also met lots of people I’d not seen in ages and Pablo, a Christian from Mexico, whom I had met at Eden (my church) on Sunday also came along. We had ‘International Dance’ evening which was really good fun and then we advertised Harry’s.
After the Barn had finished, we went to the 11pm showing at the ADC of the footlights’ latest production “Under the blue, blue moon”. Footlights is the Cambridge comedy society which has produced the likes of the Monty Python crew. There were some quite funny bits eg “Are you the man who’s stuck in the water pipe?”, but I don’t generally find things like that particularly funny and I was quite tired anyway.
Today, I spent most of the day in bed again, doing more research. I’ve discovered that the exact area I was going to do my dissertation on has already been covered by several people including one 300-page PhD thesis… D’oh. I also had a meeting about my Judaism and Helenism paper which sounds quite exciting. Even though it’s coursework, the topic areas are very broad and it covers a period from 200BC to 200AD.
In the afternoon, I went to the first Harry’s of term and spent the whole two hours talking to Cheng-Shi again! We’ll be meeting up to do some Bible study on Monday I think – he’s so full of questions! After Harry’s, 11 people came back to mine and we had some pizza 🙂
Finally got the internet in my room.. 🙂 There goes any hope of doing work this term…
Had quite a busy day today; I went out with Tabs from 10 until about 11:30 and we visited language schools to advertise Harry’s as it’s starting again this Friday. I then bought some standing lamps from Argos to make my room brighter and headed to the CU evangelistic event at 12. Left that early as there was a Harry’s prayer meeting in my room from 1 until 2. I then went down to Sidgewick and tried to get the various people to sign my dissertation form and renewed the library books etc. Then got back and Zishan came round. Probably go to the CU tonight and maybe a film afterwards…
Sitting in my room and listening to the competing cries of the Big Issue seller (“Buy my Big Issue to show I don’t smell”) and the Poster Crier (“Turn your delapodated room into a Cistine chapel”), I managed to do some work on my dissertation this afternoon. I arose at 6:30 this morning to have Greek Bible study with Patrick and Angela. We then had a large breakfast in hall, and then I mostly messed around with paper work and putting the final touches to my wonderful, large room. I also wrote a short article about china for my college.
Yesterday was spent visiting more people that I havn’t seen in ages and generally messing around on my guitar and so on. In the evening, I went out for a Harry’s team meal where we discussed what we would do this term.
I’ve also just discovered my new timetable for this term, which is really good – I have 5 lectures spread between Tuesday and Wednesday! Wooo! 5 day weekend… something like that at any rate 🙂