Friday, April 28, 2017

You Carry Us

Lord, You carry our pain
Our sorrow
Our broken lives
Our anguish
Our heartaches
Pour Your mercy
Pour Your grace
Touch our heart
Renew
Refresh
And restore us

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Persevering Love

God's love gives us the strength to persevere.  When everything seems to be falling apart.  The Lord offers His undying hope.  He has called us to Himself.  A people redeemed by His grace.  A people consecrated to Him.  A people whose sole desire is to see His purposes fulfilled in us.  We are not crushed.  We are not beaten and down trodden.  We have a living hope, we have a future in God.  We persevere out of the pure grace that God has poured into our broken lives.

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Our Only Hope and Desire

This glorious Saturday day brings us new strength and hope. Flood our hearts with Your Your divine grace and love. As we align our lives according to Your purposes and plan. We pray for You to pour Your mercy and grace on us. We have set our hearts on pilgrimage. Burn Your deep desire in us. Keep the flame of Your love burning brighter and stronger. For You are our only hope and desire.

Friday, April 07, 2017

We would have Despaired

We would have despaired
Had it not been for Your tender mercy
We would have despaired
Had it not been for Your loving kindness
We would have despaired
Had it not been for Your unfailing love
We would have despaired
Had it not been for Your undying hope
We would have despaired
Had it not been Your abiding presence
We rise with strength
We rise with hope
We rise with courage
We call our to You
For You are eternal God
You are our portion forever
You are the strength of our heart

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Our Eternal Hope

This morning, my heart is overwhelmed by God's indescribable love.  Monte and I has tasted the grace of God so amazingly.  We could never have survived has it not for God's sustaining power.  I cannot describe the many crises and challenges we have faced for years.  It is no wonder that only fools would say that there is no God.  God is not a figment of our imagination.  He reveals Himself to us in our darkest hour; when all we could do is to cry out to Him to rescue and deliver us.  He has never once failed us.  He shows us His sufficiency.  He assures us for His undying love.  He floods our hearts with peace that passes understanding.  God is no man's debtor.  He pours His grace on us as we acknowledge His sovereignty and greatness.  We are powerless and He is all powerful.  We are weak and He is strong.  We are helpless and He is our eternal hope.

Great in Glory

Great in glory
Great in power
Great in strengh
Great is the Lord
And greatly to be praised
You spoke this world into existence
And You have made us
Your dwelling place
To declare Your power
To show Your glory
To display Your splendour

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

We Declare Your Majesty

Each day as we are awakened by Your love, we come humbly before You.  You are Lord of our life. You are our source and our strength.  You are our hiding place and we find shelter under the shadow of Your wings. You spoke this world into existence and You know each of us by name. For You have made us and You have sustained us by Your power.  Nothing in this world can replace You and we extol Your most high name.  We declare Your majesty and glory.  We proclaim You are our everlasting God and King.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

The Fire of His Love

Serving God brings Monte and I tremendous joy and fulfillment.  God's call has brought us to an amazing journey to His heart.  We hear His heart beat and follow Him with no reservation. There is no higher calling than to worship and honour the Kings of kings and the Lord of lords.  His love compels to love and serve Him and His people. He graces us to be a witness to the people who are loss without His love.

Faith and adventure are pathways of the Lord. We can only go as far as the Lord leads. There are seasons of abundance and seasons of lack. We lean on Him and allow Him to see us through every season. We continue to soldier on in full assurance of His goodness and greatness. We depend completely on the Lord's care, love and providence. Our Redeemer lives!

We experience the fire of God's love.  This fire burns brighter and stronger as the day goes by.  The Lord sets our heart ablazed with His love.  For the sake of knowing Christ, we stepped into the great unknown with full assurance that God is all we need.  He is ever faithful.  Calvary's love propels us to take another step; to walk another mile.  We see hope and possibilities in face of the daunting challenges and hardship.  God pours His mercy and grace and opens our eyes to see His love at work.  The ministry that God has entrusted to us is never a burden.  It is a delight.  It is a joy.  It is an honour to serve the living God.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Hope

Thank you, Lord
For a glimmer of hope
A sure hope
A living hope
Your hope brings life
Your hope brings comfort
Your hope brings release
Rebuild our broken lives
Rebuild our broken dreams
Rebuild our broken ruins
For our hope is in You

Friday, March 24, 2017

Awakened

Awakened by Your love
Awakened by Your hope
Awakened by Your grace
Each day is a gift from You
We love because You first loved us
We are consumed by You
We are possessed by You
We are drawn into Your presence
To be fully awake and alive
In Your awesome presence
Beholding Your beauty and glory

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Heal Us, Lord

Lord, have mercy on us
Pour Your grace on us
Touch and heal us
Let Your healing power flow
Let it flow through 
Every cell
Every tissue
Every fibre
Let it flow through our veins
Through our arteries
Flood our hearts with faith
As we cry out to You
Heal our broken bodies, Lord
The balm of Gilead
Our only hope
Let faith arise
To receive Your healing touch

Monday, March 20, 2017

God is so Good

Monte and I were married on 20 March 1999.  We thank God for blessing us with eighteen years of marriage.  We are grateful to the Lord for bringing us together and holding us in His loving hands all these years.  Monte is a wonderful and loving husband who constantly loves, cares, believes and supports me.  He sacrificed and gave of his best to me.  I am blessed.

God sustains us daily.  Each day, we are reminded that the Lord is in control and we can rely on Him completely.  We have tasted God's goodness and grace.  We have seen wonders and miracles.  The Lord shows us that there is absolutely nothing He cannot do.  We have experienced His miraculous provision.  We have experienced His abiding presence in the midst of raging storms.  Even at this moment, we are not out of the woods.  What keeps us going on is God's hand of love, His faithfulness and sustaining grace.  We desire to live in the center of His will.  As we posture our hearts to seek the Lord, we find strength for each new day. He is the reason for our being.  God unfolds His plans and purposes and fill our hearts with faith and hope.  We would not have made it apart from His mercy and grace.  We bow in humble adoration at the foot of the cross and declare that He is Lord.

We are thankful for family and friends who have journeyed with us all these years.  Many people have stood by us and encouraged us in our journey.  We appreciate each of you and pray for God's abundant blessings on you.



Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Living in Your Promises

Your promise of unfailing love
Your promise of undying hope
Your promise of divine strength
Your promise of unspeakable joy
Your promise of fearless courage
How can we live without You
Living in Your promises
Makes everything comes alive
Living in Your promises
Opens our eyes to see You
In Your glory 
And Your grace



Thursday, March 09, 2017

Shower us with Your Mercy and Grace

The miracle of God’s love
The miracle of God’s power
The miracle of God’s grace
Lord, have mercy of us
Shower us with Your mighty love
Your awesome power
And Your amazing grace
All honour, glory and praise
Be unto You
Our God and King
Everlasting Father
And the great I am

Monday, March 06, 2017

You Are More Than Enough

As long as You are with us
As long as Your hand of love is on us
As long as Your Spirit leads us
That is all we ask, Lord
For You are more than enough
All we ever needed is found in You
We cry out to You in despearation
We call on Your mighty name
We proclaim Your majesty

Saturday, March 04, 2017

Faithful God

As Monte leaves for the States, this morning.  Our hearts are overflowing with God's goodness and faithfulness.  His miraculous provision blew our minds.  We serve a God who has endless supply and resources.  We know that there is absolutely nothing He cannot do.

Monte's first stop after transit in LAX is Nashville, Tennessee, where he will spend a few days with Ekaputra Tupamahu (PhD student at Vanderbilt University) and his wife Jenny and kids. Then he and Ekaputra will drive up to St Louis, Missouri, to again participate and present a paper in the annual conference of the Society for Pentecostal Studies (9 -11 March).  We are grateful to God that He has orchestrated Monte's involvement in this global impacting conference for six consecutive years.  On 12 March, Monte will be off to California (Clovis/Fresno; central California) to visit our beloved family.

We would like to express our deepest appreciation for family and friends who have made this trip possible.  Some have blessed us financially,  others have encouraged and prayed for us. We pray for God's bountiful blessings on each one of you.

We journey with the Lord with joy, hope and expectancy.  We know we cannot do anything apart from the Lord.  He is boundless, limitless and matchless.  God is ever faithful, merciful and gracious.  We see the miraculous, life, hope and endless possibilities in Christ.

Thursday, March 02, 2017

We Rest in You

This glorious morning beams with hope and optimism. How can we ever live without You. You are the reason for our being. You are why our heart is beating. We lean not on our own understanding. We rest in Your amazing love.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Pour Your Spirit on Us

Lord, reach out to the inner recesses of our heart.  Purify us from deep within.  Do a deep and a lasting work in us.  Lead us to Your heart. Shine Your light on our paths as Your Spirit leads us. Shine down Your light and pour forth Your Spirit.  Consume us with Your fire. Cleanse us with Your water. Light our path and show us the way forward.  We lean not on our understanding and rest in Your abiding presence.  We rest in Your unfailing love.  We long to touch Your throne of grace.  We long for Your courts.


Monday, February 27, 2017

Hear Our Cry

Drive us to our knees, Lord
Drive us into Your presence
To seek You
To love You
To know You
Touch our hearts
Touch our minds
Touch our souls
You meet our deepest desire
You hear the cries of our heart
You fill our deepest longing

Monday, February 20, 2017

Moment

Moment of pain
Moment of despair
Moment of anguish
God lives in these moments
He dwells in our hearts
He dwells in our thoughts
All that we do not understand
Every unanswered question
God reveals Himself to us
In these moments
Precious moments
Moments of complete release
Moments of sweet surrender
Moments of endless hope
He speaks life
He speaks wholeness
He speaks strength
He speaks hope

Friday, February 10, 2017

Happy Birthday, Monte!

Today is Monte's birthday. I thank God for him. He loves and cares for me deeply. He looks into my well being and does everything he can to ensure that I reach my fullest potential in every aspect of my life.

I pray for God to pour His spirit on Monte. I pray for God to lead and guide Him daily. That God will empower and release Him to venture into the things that He has in-stored in the coming years.

We have journeyed together as a couple since March 1999. God has brought us to the highest heights and the deepest depths. He has brought us so much joy. He shows us that He is boundless, limitless and endless. He has blessed us beyond our wildest imagination. We can only bow in humble adoration at His feet.

We pray for God to continue to work in and through us. We pray for His sustaining grace and strength for each new day. All we want is His hand of love on us. He is all we ever needed. God is the strength of our heart. He satisfies our deepest longings. We pray for God to deepen our love for each other. We cherish each moment we share together.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

In the Shelter of Your Wings

Feed us, Lord
Clothe us
Comfort us
Restore us
Heal us
Strengthen us
Empower us
We hide in the shelter of Your wings
We drink from Your well
We linger in Your abiding presence
Hope of all eternity
We call on You
And rest in Your love



Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Looking to the Lord

I am raising funds for Monte's PHD studies through my vocal training.  Last September, a sister in Christ, G responded and I had four wonderful sessions of training with her.  She was so kind to agree to have her testimony on my vocal training website:

"Jee Fong is a very passionate vocal coach, always going the extra mile to clarify any doubts, questions or issues I have. Her passion flows through her coaching and ignites passion in me to reach higher to excel in singing. Jee Fong's knowledge of singing techniques and vocal care are rich and sound and she's able to demonstrate it and guide me to try and experience what the techniques can do. Her coaching also addressed my misconceptions about singing and enabled me to sing with less constraints and more confidence. I highly recommend Jee Fong if you're looking for an effective vocal coach." 




The following is some details of Monte's PHD aspiration:

"Dear Friends, and Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Through the Spirit of God who proclaims the healing of Jesus to all creation— grace, peace, and joy be yours in increasing fullness! 

MOVING FORWARD 2017

·         March 2017 USA trip for SPS paper presentation.

·         PhD proposal approved / invitation to application process

PhD proposal approved for Centre of Pentecostal & Charismatic Studies (Bangor University, Wales) / Invitation to application process / Aspiring to start in 2017.

·         Prayer requests / how you can help.

·         My vision and passion.

·         Conclusion. 

As most of you may be thinking, this email is marking a yearly pattern.  To those who have prayed or generously helped over the past few years, please know again: Jee Fong and I are indebted to you. Once again let me say: at the very least, what we seek is from a posture of gratefulness before God and you who have helped us in the past— faithfulness to His Word over us.  Faithfulness to God’s Word, as we discern His will, moving forward from now to the future.

So again I write that I may enlist your prayer and involvement via however God prompts you— for the up-building of the Church, the coming Kingdom, and the greater glory of God.



MARCH 2017 USA TRIP FOR SPS PAPER PRESENTATION

2017 Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS) Meeting (9–11 March)

Please read this point in context of the following discussion (Bangor PhD programme).  SPS has again approved my paper proposal for the 2017 SPS conference.  This meeting will be held at Urshan College / Urshan Graduate School of Theology, St. Louis, Missouri, USA.  You can learn more about this by visiting the SPS website (http://www.sps-usa.org). 

As next year’s theme is “Pentecostalism and Culture,” my topic is, “Towards a Pentecostal Conscientizing Praxis of Mass Culture Engagement.”  Recognising the role Pentecostalism plays towards shaping culture, I will be suggesting from the wells of pentecostal theology, constructive ways for doing so, in dialogue with Roman Catholic approaches.  God willing, this will be my fifth presented paper in six consecutive SPS annual meetings.  Through four points, let me further share on the aims of my role in the 2016 SPS meeting:

Through four points, let me share the aims of my role in the 2016 SPS meeting:

1.    Shaping world Pentecostal theology and spirituality

Through this global-influencing platform, I am again participating in the shaping of world Pentecostal theology.  

2.    Ecumenical dialogue on relations between Pentecostalism and culture

This will be my third year of involvement with the Ecumenical Interest Group, which involves representatives from varied Christian traditions, including Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and other Protestant traditions.  These conversations help foster bridge building between Pentecostalism and other traditions.

3.    Linking our local setting to important global conversations

I am linking my setting (here in Singapore and Southeast Asia), to conversations occurring amongst this international fellowship of ministry leaders, pastors, theologians, and scholars, on the role of Pentecostalism towards shaping local and global culture.

4.    Meeting the doctoral supervisor for beginning the targeted 2017 PhD programme.

Let me clarify this in the next section.


PhD PROPOSAL APPROVED / INVITATION TO APPLICATION PROCESS

PhD proposal approved for Centre of Pentecostal & Charismatic Studies (Bangor University, Wales)

Last July through prayer, discerning confirmation, and encouraging counsel to resolutely move forward— I formally proposed a PhD research proposal to Rev Dr. Frank Macchia, one of the Directors for the Centre of Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies at Bangor University School of Theology and Religious Studies (Wales, UK).  I did so, stating I am to begin in 2017. 

As some of you may know, Dr Macchia is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God (USA), based at Vanguard University in Southern California, and respectfully known across Christian traditions as a world-class Pentecostal theologian.  Many recognise his past work as evidencing a deep passion towards fusing grassroots pentecostal experience, worship, mission, and theologising— into one seamlessly practiced way of life.

After several email exchanges and revisions to the draft, on 23 August Dr Macchia approved the proposal.  He added, “this proposal is good. . . . I believe that you can make a worthy contribution to pentecostal scholarship.”  So to those who prayed for me as I worked on the draft, let me say, thank you.  I have titled the proposal, “Towards a Pentecostal Theological-Aesthetic and Practice of Sacred Time.”  The project will research how “sacred time” is understood, practiced, and being theologically developed within pentecostal spirituality.  So the project will focus on worship and liturgy, recognising that pentecostal liturgy is foremost oral rather than print-based, and that is crucial to its giftedness as a Christian tradition. 

Invitation to application process / Aspiring to start in 2017.

On 25 August I received an email from Dr Eryl W Davies, head of the Bangor, School of Philosophy and Religion.  He mentioned that Dr Macchia had been in touch with him about me, and advised me to now start the application process and forms.  This will be a five year doctoral programme.  Yet as a supervisor-directed pure research programme (no course work), it can be pursued anywhere in the world.  It only requires an on-site meeting with my supervisor (Dr Macchia) once year.  Moving forward, this meeting now becomes a key purpose to my ongoing involvement with the annual SPS conference, at least for the next several years.  What I understand is that this would coincide with the annual SPS meetings, probably with a batch of other Bangor PhD students.  God willing, presuming that the PhD programme miraculously begins, meeting Dr Macchia at the SPS meeting next March will comprise a key purpose to my trip.


PRAYER REQUESTS / HOW YOU CAN HELP

1.    March 2017 USA trip for SPS paper presentation

As in these past years, my attendance next March depends on coming to God in prayer for all necessary expenses (plane fare, hotel accommodations, conference fees, etc).  It remains a big faith venture, wholly dependent on God’s miraculous provision for that which is beyond our present capacity.

Please note the following time-expedient items:

Conference registration fees. 

By 1 November, conference participants are required to have their registration and membership fees covered (which can be done after 1 October).

Airfare. 

It would be best if I could secure airfare soon as possible (September-November), to avoid rising costs/limited seat challenges as we move closer to March 2017.

Your prayer towards these items is appreciated.  And if you are able to financially help, just let me know and we can arrange in ways that get the funds directly to these items.  I do immediately need help in meeting the conference registration fees.


2.    Bangor application process, final approval, and long-term funding.

Application process. 

First, please pray for God’s hand on the application process. 

Long-term tuition funding: Concerning the long-term costs involved, that would take a real big miracle.  Please pray for that miracle. The cost is far beyond our social-economic reach.  So this is the only way it can happen.

Meeting the yearly tuition costs

The basic tuition costs would be about US$8,000 per year; so, about US$40,000 over five years.  This would require access to things like scholarships, grants, and just plain miraculous funding.  A stronger family income would also help.  Several months ago, I was linked up to a local scholarship foundation who expressed interest in my potential programme.  They advised that once I have an “official acceptance letter” from Bangor, that I should apply for their scholarship.   So once that happens, I will follow through with that.

As I shall stress below, we recognise that to moving forward towards these aims, requires readiness to go forward wherever this may take us, to maximise their purpose and potential outcomes for the good of the global Pentecostal tradition, and the worldwide Church of God.  Therefore, also pray towards:

1. Funding that can initiate this PhD venture.

2. Long-term strategies for meeting the yearly PhD expenses.

3. Any new ministerial, church, organisational, or collaborative relations that may also help towards the short or long-term funding of this venture.

MY VISION AND PASSION

As I have stressed in previous updates, let me again frame these endeavours within the vision and passion that I find defining my greater sense of mission as an ecumenically minded Pentecostal: to preach the Gospel for all creation, fostering pentecostal spirituality and its theological tradition worldwide— for the unifying renewal of the global Church.

Let me also again stress, I am pursuing both the March 2017 SPS trip and the Bangor PhD programme, in ecumenical service to the greater global Church.  And as best both my wife Jee Fong and I discern, we are pursuing this with full openness to God and His whole world, willing to go wherever the Lord may send us in convergence to this project’s purpose and outcomes for:

·            The global renewing of pentecostal spirituality.

·            The growing renaissance of this tradition’s theological tradition.

·            In ecumenical service for the unifying renewal of the Church of God worldwide and the greater glory of God.



CONCLUSION

Believing God has both impassions and wills us towards this journey, both Jee Fong and I pray that you may find motive towards aiding these endeavours.  This may be through intentional prayer, financial support, involved strategic planing or networking, or facilitating new ministerial platforms in convergence to this venture. 

May God guide your involvement in these ventures.  May the Lord prosper you with renewed passion for God’s coming kingdom, good health, and overflowing abundance.

The peace of Christ be yours through the power of God’s Spirit,

Monte


monteleerice.wordpress.com
sg.linkedin.com/in/monterice
academia.edu/MonteRice


Curricular Vitae: https://app.box.com/files/0/f/57952994/1/f_554694150
Ministry Profile: https://app.box.com/files/0/f/57952994/1/f_554691848

monterice@gmail.com


For the healing of our Father’s world,
May we of many tongues
Through Pentecost—
Be made one
In Christ.

Before God: Practice mercy, cause justice, heal the world.
Let us tarry for Heaven's surprises
Where in waiting hearts
Hope surprises with
More than enough
Love to pass
On the way
Of faith.


Society News | Home | Society for Pentecostal Studies
The 46th Annual Meeting of the Society for Pentecostal Studies will be held at Urshan College / Urshan Graduate School of Theology in Florissant (St. Louis), MO, March 9-11, 2017. More Information >
SPS-USA.ORG"


I would like to testify that God has sovereignly provided for Monte's SPS conference.  We stand amazed at His miraculously provision.  We continue to pray and ask the Lord to guide us in the PHD aspiration.  He leads and guide us every step of the way.









Monday, January 23, 2017

The Glory of Your Presence

Oh! The glory of Your presence. The place where we find peace, hope, comfort, joy and wholeness. The things of this world is temporal. Only what comes from You is eternal and last forever. Our wealth, prestige, status and social standing cannot replace the rightful place reserved for You. You are irreplaceable.
Saturate us with Your presence. Come and wash over us with Your water. Cover us with Your love. Draw us by Your Spirit. We are not satisfied with the knee deep water; we want to swim in the river of Your Spirit. We want to go where You desire us to venture. You satisfy our longing. You hear our deepest cry. Show us Your awesome glory, Lord. We want to see You high and lifted up. Be magnified, O Lord!

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Purify Us Lord

The pure in heart shall see the Lord.  The pure in heart shall hear His clarion call.  The pure in heart knows the heart cry of the Lord.  Purify and sanctify us, we pray.  Open the eyes of our heart that we may know You.  Unfold Your purposes and plans to us.  Lead us on to pursue You without reservation.

Remove every hindrance.  Remove vindictiveness, rage, anger, jealousy, malice and every form of evil.  Perform a surgery on our heart this day.  Let the searchlight of Your Holy Spirit shine in every nook and corner of our hearts.  Remove the heart of stone and grant us a heart of flesh.  Grant us a heart that beats for You.  Consume our lives and set us free to worship You all the days of our lives.


Friday, January 20, 2017

Our Spiritual Parents

Monte and I are deeply indebted to our spiritual parents, Dad Everett and mum Evelyn.  We went back to the year 2000. We were then at Asia Pacific Theological Seminary. Our paths crossed and our relationship deepened over these many years.

They are AG missionaries on the field. Despite of a few health challenges, obstacles and trails. They persevered and pressed on to love and serve the Lord wholeheartedly. Age did not stop them from staying in the field. Some would have stopped and retired if they were in their predicaments. They soldier on with love.

When Monte was contemplating on his first Society of Pentecostal Studies conference in 2012, it was tough and Dad Everett and Mum Evelyn encouraged us to trust God. They used their air mileage to get Monte an air ticket. The rest is history. That day, God planted a seed of faith that continues to grow today.
They are God's precious servants who sacrificed and love God dearly. They have poured out their lives and touched many in many countries.

We know that they cover us with precious prayer. We are thankful for them. We pray for God's richest blessings on them and their family. We pray for God to touch and strengthen them.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Speak Lord

God speaks to us.  Our chief shepherd calls out to us and speaks life into our crisis and circumstances. He speaks strength, wholeness and healing into our battled bodies.  He is not a figment of our imagination.  He is alive.  He speaks hope and restoration in our despair and disarray.  He speaks to broken people.  He speaks those who are vulnerable.  He speaks to our broken hearts and bruised ego.

Speak, Lord.  We long to hear Your voice.  For we are Your sheep and we need You desperately.  Call out to us and we will respond in love and submission.

Miraculous Provision

Monte and I have been praying for God’s supernatural supply for his upcoming 2017 Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS) Meeting (9–11 March) This meeting will be held at Urshan College / Urshan Graduate School of Theology, St. Louis, Missouri, USA. The theme is “Pentecostalism and Culture,” my topic is, “Towards a Pentecostal Conscientizing Praxis of Mass Culture Engagement.” Recognizing the role Pentecostalism plays towards shaping culture, he will be suggesting from the wells of pentecostal theology, constructive ways for doing so, in dialogue with Roman Catholic approaches. This will be his fifth presented paper in six consecutive SPS annual meetings.

Last night, Monte bought his air ticket. We thank God for His miraculous provision. We marvel at His greatness and goodness. His has endless supply. We find our sufficiency in Christ. We purpose in our hearts to pursue Him at all cost.
Our hearts go out to our family and friends who have supported us financially towards this ministry. We appreciate many who have prayed for us. Many have also encouraged us in this journey.
Our God is a prayer answering God. When we cry to Him, He extends His hand of love to us in His mercy and grace. He pours His blessings on all who call on His great name. We the redeemed stand amazed in His presence. We declare our everlasting love for Him. We bow in humble adoration at His throne of grace.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Fall Afresh on us

Lord, grant us a fresh impartation of faith. We want to see through Your eyes, we want to hear through Your ears. We want to feel Your heart cry. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on us this day. Let Your anointing fall on us as we pray in faith believing You for the many miracles we need. Extend Your hand of mercy and love. Teach us to walk by faith and not by sight. Flood our hearts with Your sure hope and assurance. Pour Your grace on us as we reach out to You with our desperate plea. Do a deep and a lasting work in us. We desire to live in Your will. Unfold Your purposes to us as we seek Your face. Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on us.


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Great is Your Faithfulness

Monte and I are deeply indebted to the Lord for journeying with us for this past 16 years.  We pray for God to do whatever He desires to do.  We are ready to go anywhere He wants us to go.  When we offer our lives to our loving Father, He directs and leads us to places that we have never ever imagined going.  Trials, testing and challenges open our eyes to see the wonder of our great God.  He is not bound by circumstances, time and space.  He is limitless and matchless.  Our hearts well up with joy and thanksgiving for His faithfulness and grace.  His unfailing love captivates us daily.

This journey to the heart of God gets better because God is in complete control in the midst of our fiercest storm.  There is nothing our God cannot do.  He spoke the world into existence and yet He speaks to us individually.  He makes us His habitation and shines His glorious light through us. 

All glory and honour belong to Him.  We proclaim His majesty.  We can only bow in His awesome presence and extol Him as our supreme and mighty God and King.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Dream Maker

By the power of God’s spirit, dreams are born in our hearts. God does not only birth dreams in us, He brings them to pass in His time. When God consumes us totally, He speaks into our heart and spirit. We learn to lean on Him completely. We step out in faith. We hearken unto His voice and follow hard after our maker and redeemer. God displays His awesome power and strength through our weakness and vulnerability. He is alive; He comes into our chaotic world and brings peace that passes understanding. He brings hope in our utter despair. He is our miracle working and prayer answering God. How great is our God!

The dreams that God birthed in our hearts speak of His awesome goodness and greatness. He abides in us. He brings renewed strength, purpose and hope. All we need is in Christ alone. He who began the good work in us will complete what He has set out to do; to bring wholeness, healing and strength to our beaten bodies.
Lord, we call out to You, this day. Come Holy Spirit, come in Your might, come and abide in us. Let Your glory fill the earth as the water covers the sea.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Miracle Working God

Monte and I have been serving the Lord together since 1999.  God has been faithfully leading and guiding us to love and serve Him in ways that we could never imagined.  God has place the PHD aspiration in Monte's heart for the past three decades.  

The following is a write up on this aspiration:
"Dear Friends, and Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Through the Spirit of God who proclaims the healing of Jesus to all creation— grace, peace, and joy be yours in increasing fullness! 

MOVING FORWARD 2017
 ·         March 2017 USA trip for SPS paper presentation.
·         PhD proposal approved / invitation to application process

PhD proposal approved for Centre of Pentecostal & Charismatic Studies (Bangor University, Wales) / Invitation to application process / Aspiring to start in 2017.
·         Prayer requests / how you can help.
·         My vision and passion.
·         Conclusion. 

As most of you may be thinking, this email is marking a yearly pattern.  To those who have prayed or generously helped over the past few years, please know again: Jee Fong and I are indebted to you.  Once again let me say: at the very least, what we seek is from a posture of gratefulness before God and you who have helped us in the past— faithfulness to His Word over us.  Faithfulness to God’s Word, as we discern His will, moving forward from now to the future.
So again I write that I may enlist your prayer and involvement via however God prompts you— for the up-building of the Church, the coming Kingdom, and the greater glory of God.

MARCH 2017 USA TRIP FOR SPS PAPER PRESENTATION

2017 Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS) Meeting (9–11 March)
Please read this point in context of the following discussion (Bangor PhD programme).  SPS has again approved my paper proposal for the 2017 SPS conference.  This meeting will be held at Urshan College / Urshan Graduate School of Theology, St. Louis, Missouri, USA.  You can learn more about this by visiting the SPS website (http://www.sps-usa.org). 
As next year’s theme is “Pentecostalism and Culture,” my topic is, “Towards a Pentecostal Conscientizing Praxis of Mass Culture Engagement.”  Recognising the role Pentecostalism plays towards shaping culture, I will be suggesting from the wells of pentecostal theology, constructive ways for doing so, in dialogue with Roman Catholic approaches.  God willing, this will be my fifth presented paper in six consecutive SPS annual meetings.  Through four points, let me further share on the aims of my role in the 2016 SPS meeting:

Through four points, let me share the aims of my role in the 2016 SPS meeting:

1.    Shaping world Pentecostal theology and spirituality
Through this global-influencing platform, I am again participating in the shaping of world Pentecostal theology.  

2.    Ecumenical dialogue on relations between Pentecostalism and culture
This will be my third year of involvement with the Ecumenical Interest Group, which involves representatives from varied Christian traditions, including Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and other Protestant traditions.  These conversations help foster bridge building between Pentecostalism and other traditions.

3.    Linking our local setting to important global conversations
I am linking my setting (here in Singapore and Southeast Asia), to conversations occurring amongst this international fellowship of ministry leaders, pastors, theologians, and scholars, on the role of Pentecostalism towards shaping local and global culture.

4.    Meeting the doctoral supervisor for beginning the targeted 2017 PhD programme.
Let me clarify this in the next section.

PhD PROPOSAL APPROVED / INVITATION TO APPLICATION PROCESS

PhD proposal approved for Centre of Pentecostal & Charismatic Studies (Bangor University, Wales)
Last July through prayer, discerning confirmation, and encouraging counsel to resolutely move forward— I formally proposed a PhD research proposal to Rev Dr. Frank Macchia, one of the Directors for the Centre of Pentecostal and Charismatic Studies at Bangor University School of Theology and Religious Studies (Wales, UK).  I did so, stating I am to begin in 2017. 

As some of you may know, Dr Macchia is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God (USA), based at Vanguard University in Southern California, and respectfully known across Christian traditions as a world-class Pentecostal theologian.  Many recognise his past work as evidencing a deep passion towards fusing grassroots pentecostal experience, worship, mission, and theologising— into one seamlessly practiced way of life.

After several email exchanges and revisions to the draft, on 23 August Dr Macchia approved the proposal.  He added, “this proposal is good. . . . I believe that you can make a worthy contribution to pentecostal scholarship.”  So to those who prayed for me as I worked on the draft, let me say, thank you.  I have titled the proposal, “Towards a Pentecostal Theological-Aesthetic and Practice of Sacred Time.”  The project will research how “sacred time” is understood, practiced, and being theologically developed within pentecostal spirituality.  So the project will focus on worship and liturgy, recognising that pentecostal liturgy is foremost oral rather than print-based, and that is crucial to its giftedness as a Christian tradition. 

Invitation to application process / Aspiring to start in 2017.

On 25 August I received an email from Dr Eryl W Davies, head of the Bangor, School of Philosophy and Religion.  He mentioned that Dr Macchia had been in touch with him about me, and advised me to now start the application process and forms.  This will be a five year doctoral programme.  Yet as a supervisor-directed pure research programme (no course work), it can be pursued anywhere in the world.  It only requires an on-site meeting with my supervisor (Dr Macchia) once year.  Moving forward, this meeting now becomes a key purpose to my ongoing involvement with the annual SPS conference, at least for the next several years.  What I understand is that this would coincide with the annual SPS meetings, probably with a batch of other Bangor PhD students.  God willing, presuming that the PhD programme miraculously begins, meeting Dr Macchia at the SPS meeting next March will comprise a key purpose to my trip.

PRAYER REQUESTS / HOW YOU CAN HELP

1.    March 2017 USA trip for SPS paper presentation
As in these past years, my attendance next March depends on coming to God in prayer for all necessary expenses (plane fare, hotel accommodations, conference fees, etc).  It remains a big faith venture, wholly dependent on God’s miraculous provision for that which is beyond our present capacity.
Please note the following time-expedient items:
Conference registration fees. 

By 1 November, conference participants are required to have their registration and membership fees covered (which can be done after 1 October).
Airfare. 

It would be best if I could secure airfare soon as possible (September-November), to avoid rising costs/limited seat challenges as we move closer to March 2017.
Your prayer towards these items is appreciated.  And if you are able to financially help, just let me know and we can arrange in ways that get the funds directly to these items.  I do immediately need help in meeting the conference registration fees.

2.    Bangor application process, final approval, and long-term funding.
Application process. 

First, please pray for God’s hand on the application process. 
Long-term tuition funding: Concerning the long-term costs involved, that would take a real big miracle.  Please pray for that miracle. The cost is far beyond our social-economic reach.  So this is the only way it can happen.
Meeting the yearly tuition costs

The basic tuition costs would be about US$8,000 per year; so, about US$40,000 over five years.  This would require access to things like scholarships, grants, and just plain miraculous funding.  A stronger family income would also help. Several months ago, I was linked up to a local scholarship foundation who expressed interest in my potential programme. They advised that once I have an “official acceptance letter” from Bangor, that I should apply for their scholarship.   So once that happens, I will follow through with that.

As I shall stress below, we recognise that to moving forward towards these aims, requires readiness to go forward wherever this may take us, to maximise their purpose and potential outcomes for the good of the global Pentecostal tradition, and the worldwide Church of God.  Therefore, also pray towards:
1. Funding that can initiate this PhD venture.

2. Long-term strategies for meeting the yearly PhD expenses.
3. Any new ministerial, church, organisational, or collaborative relations that may also help towards the short or long-term funding of this venture.

MY VISION AND PASSION
As I have stressed in previous updates, let me again frame these endeavours within the vision and passion that I find defining my greater sense of mission as an ecumenically minded Pentecostal: to preach the Gospel for all creation, fostering pentecostal spirituality and its theological tradition worldwide— for the unifying renewal of the global Church.
Let me also again stress, I am pursuing both the March 2017 SPS trip and the Bangor PhD programme, in ecumenical service to the greater global Church.  And as best both my wife Jee Fong and I discern, we are pursuing this with full openness to God and His whole world, willing to go wherever the Lord may send us in convergence to this project’s purpose and outcomes for:

·            The global renewing of pentecostal spirituality.
·            The growing renaissance of this tradition’s theological tradition.
·            In ecumenical service for the unifying renewal of the Church of God worldwide and the greater glory of God.

CONCLUSION
Believing God has both impassions and wills us towards this journey, both Jee Fong and I pray that you may find motive towards aiding these endeavours.  This may be through intentional prayer, financial support, involved strategic planing or networking, or facilitating new ministerial platforms in convergence to this venture. 

May God guide your involvement in these ventures.  May the Lord prosper you with renewed passion for God’s coming kingdom, good health, and overflowing abundance.

The peace of Christ be yours through the power of God’s Spirit,
Monte

monteleerice.wordpress.com
sg.linkedin.com/in/monterice
academia.edu/MonteRice

Curricular Vitae: https://app.box.com/files/0/f/57952994/1/f_554694150
Ministry Profile: https://app.box.com/files/0/f/57952994/1/f_554691848
monterice@gmail.com

For the healing of our Father’s world,
May we of many tongues
Through Pentecost—
Be made one
In Christ.
Before God: Practice mercy, cause justice, heal the world.
Let us tarry for Heaven's surprises
Where in waiting hearts
Hope surprises with
More than enough
Love to pass
On the way
Of faith."

We are thankful for the opportunity for Monte to serve through this platform that the Lord had sovereignly opened. On the other hand, we do not have the funds to do this. Over dinner this evening, I told Monte that God is going to provide for the upcoming SPS conference. God has challenged us to believe even when we do not see with our natural eyes. He has performed one miracle after another. He shows us that nothing is impossible for Him. This trip is not possible in the natural but God will do a supernatural work.

We marvel at His greatness and providence. As we step out in faith to believe, the Lord reminds us that all we have to offer Him is our five loaves and two fishes and He will multiply. He has blown our minds so many times that our hearts would leap with joy. We serve a mighty God. He knows no bounds. He is limitless, matchless and awesome. As God begins to work, we see our vulnerability and frailty in the light of His greatness. The Lord is greatly to be praised.


God has shown us that there is absolutely nothing He cannot do.  We step out in faith only to find out that He has paved the way for us way in advance.  He is a miracle working God.  We can only bow in humble adoration for He is greatly to be praised and worshiped.