Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Standing Up For Your Beliefs

Warning: This post contains personal rantings related to my faith. They are my views and my views alone, so if you have a problem with it, I recommend that you just don't read it.

It was already past 1.00 am. I was driving back home with my two younger friends after going out for drinks at the mamak.

Dang my rotten luck! As we were driving back, we encountered a police checkpoint at a normally busy intersection with a traffic light.

The second officer signalled me to pull up next to the road. I showed my driving license. However, he didn't seem satisfied and kept looking around at my two friends and inside the car, presumably to find fault. As fate would have it, my friend seated next to me had his seat belt double looped around his hand (I have no idea why, your guess is as good as mine). So the officer queried him. My friend kept whining and sweet talking. At one point, he said there was a problem with the safety belt. Shit, I was so infuriated.

Anyway, the officer asked my friend to get down, leaving me and the other friend in the car. He still had my driving license and for a moment, I thought maybe the license had expired so I started digging in my wallet. (OK, I thought maybe the license had a second copy to show the expiry date. Again, don't ask why... probably an OCD moment.)

Then another officer showed up and asked, 'Kenapa? Tak ada lesen kah?' meaning 'Why? No license'. I told him that wasn't it. Anyway, I grew impatient and I went down to see what was happening between my friend and the earlier officer.

They were seated at this tiny makeshift table at the roadside. My friend was still trying to explain himself and asking for leniency. The officer looked at him and kept saying 'Apa macam?' repeatedly meaning 'So how?' When the officer saw that I had come down, he kept looking at me. I'm sure you all know what was happening.

In my heart, I was very troubled. I never want to be caught in this kind of situation and I said a quick prayer to God to get me out of it without compromising myself. Then the officer asked my friend, 'Ini abang you keh?' meaning 'Is this fellow your brother?' to which my friend replied 'Bukan, ini kawan saya dari gereja.' meaning 'This is my friend from church'.

After a while, the officer eased up and just wrote down my friend's name and address. Then we left. I think the clincher was when he said that I was from church.

Every moment, we are confronted with situations that tempt us to compromise on our faith and principles. When I was still a Buddhist, I was handed down a system of beliefs consisting of Do's and Don'ts, and how you should live your life in harmony with everyone else. When I accepted Christ, I was given the Bible and the responsibility of living up to the faith I had embraced; both in the eyes of the church and the eyes of the world.

It's not an easy journey. People judge you and lump you together with 'other Christians'. They seem to think that we are all cast in the same mould when we wear a cross. You are confronted with situations where you have given only two choices between following Christ or taking the easy way out. I grow weary and I sometimes want to give up. But when such thoughts assail my mind, the other voice in my heart says,

Will you choose to obey me or live for yourself?


Kok Hon said...

I've met those situations a few times before. Usually I'll just admit my fault and say that I deserve a summon ticket. And those policemen are usually graceful and let me off!

Las montañas said...

Hmm... what do they mean by saying "apa macam?". they waiting for something?

kok hon, thats a nice tip! look sorry, silly, and cute like you and be let off!

But if you like me, drive S plate car (no, not sukom), then surely wont be let off. :(

Las montañas said...

road blocks I have encountered quite often too.

Once, we were in a van to mersing. kena stopped. I was in the front passenger seat somemore! We might have looked/behaved singaporean, maybe not. Can they tell? hehe. so just flash a nice smile at the officer, and he just waved us off. :)

Annie said...

FUGITIVES *pointing finger* - you're all a bunch of fugitives. Bah!

Another example of discrimination? On behalf of cops however, they've only got a handful of things to base their judgement.. come across a car with a hanging cross from the mirror or a lacy garter or women's lacy undies hanging from the mirror? Gives cops an idea of whether or not to move on to more REAL criminals I guess.

ME? I think I'm going to the store and buying all this camouflage like "Baby on Board" for the car window, a metal fish stuck to the back of my bumper. A "Support Our Troops" sticker on the door and another baby car seat to compliment the "look"... If that doesn't give a woman leniency, I don't know what will.

Jonzz said...

kok hon: Wah, you have such charm! LOL!

LM: Don't try to act innocent! What? It's not acting, LOL! Wah, you have a tactical group. Assign some lenglui to smile, tsk tsk tsk

Annie: What does a metal fish stuck to the back of your bumper imply?

FireHorse said...

Like kok hon, I've been stopped a few times and have never given in to the "apa macam"s, I just tell them that they are the authorities here and upholding the law is a very important job, go ahead issue me the ticket you are just doing your job and I respect you for that. I get off every single time. But I do get your frustration. Over here no more lidat ady, over here we kena flirt with polis officer and bat eyes to get off, show some cleavage if got any.

Las montañas said...

"show some cleavage if got any. "

Wait got the public behaviour/religious officer there as well!! hohoho

poohbearee said...

Jonzz: Pretend u all r mute nx time.

Annie said...

Metal FISH - whatdaya mean you don't know what a FISH sign on a bumper means.. mmmm. well, that's interesting. Anyone who has a fish sign means they're Christian.

Cleavage.. BAH! What if it's a female cop?

Answer me that church boy!

Jonzz said...

firehorse: Wow... *speechless*

LM: Yeah, firehorse, listen to the mountain man, lol!

Poohbearie: Silence means consent. You think I'm nuts. ha ha ha

Annie Oooh, using names now are we... err... err.. er.. OK, I'll let you win for today since it's Valentine's Day when the world is all filled with love, candy, sugar and spice and everybody tries their best to be nice. And peace on Earth and all that. MUA HA HA HA HA HA In your dreams, er er er... sigh brain not working..

me said...

ooooo, touchy subject. but i still have to ask, cos i'm confused. do you mean christians can't bribe? is it against the faith? maybe if u see it as expediating the progress of efficiency?

Jonzz said...

Actually, there are many references and warnings given in the Bible against bribery because it corrupts people and perverts justice. Even without the Bible, any person would know that. Anyway, here are two verses from the Old Testament:

1. Exodus 23:8 - Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds those who see and twists the words of the righteous.

2. Deuteronomy 16: 19 - Do not pervert justice or show partiality. Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eye of the wise and twists the words of the righteous.

kyels said...

If I did something wrong, I would admit it. I would not try to avoid those mistakes.

Annie said...

OMG! Jonzz! I'm serious. I'm not calling you names! LOL! Here, I'll google and image and post it for ya.

Fish = Christian

Jonzz said...

kyels: Yup I think that is the best way, but sometimes depending on the situation, people can be sorely tempted to do otherwise.

Annie: You called me 'Church boy'. GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! LOL!