How’d your day go? 😀
My day was super busy today! But it was a good day 🙂 I got the chance to share and have a talk about Jesus to people today. It was so awesome connecting with people. I think the most exciting part of life is well… people. Just interacting, getting to know others and being able to be a part of their life for 10 or 20minutes. It’s a real blessing.
I experienced such joy and after today I realised more than ever how important it is to share my testimony with as many people as I can.
I came from a luke-warm Christian background. There were people around me who believed in God, but they kinda just lived their own lives, except giving grace before meals, and going to church on the odd occasion. They didn’t think much of God, and I guess neither did I. God was just this “big guy” in heaven that I prayed to for help, and when I felt nervous before giving a speech at school – that kind of thing.
It wasn’t until I was 13 that I really came to know Christ. I used to think life was all about getting good grades, being a good citizen and helping others (all of which are important, but not the real purpose of life). I thought, “Surely there must be more to life than this, right?” I felt empty and hollow; like an empty well. I tried filling that hole by doing good things like donating to the needy, working, and meeting up with friends. Nothing worked though. During the next few years I procrastinated quite a bit, and my grades dropped from being good to mediocre. I just didn’t seem to have the motivation anymore. Everything was a bit boring, and all I wanted to do was do my own thing. Until I went to Conference.
Conference was a week-long camp where you learnt about God, spent time in fellowship and stuff. Seriously, I don’t know what it was about the people there… they were humble, kind and had really strong faith… you could literally feel the love of Jesus Christ when they talked to people or patiently answered someone’s questions about Christ. They had the “X-factor”.
Their love for others was so amazing… I wanted to love like them, and rely on God’s energy to love and help others. I’ve helped people using my own energy, but sometimes you run out of energy. Sometimes you become impatient after telling your friend the same advice for the 40th time. Sometimes you feel annoyed, even though you don’t want to, and end up coming across as too forceful. I really wanted to love like Jesus.
That morning we had a talk about finding the treasure of Christ.
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.” – Matthew 13:44
I was in awe about this treasure. I spent the next few days talking to people and asking them why they believed and trusted Christ when so much could go wrong. Each person had a different testimony, but all shared the same faith. Although their lives sounded far from perfect and trouble-free, each person seemed content. They were happy. I knew Jesus, they knew Jesus and yet… they were living different lives to me. These ordinary people you see in everyday life, believing in a God with a faith so intense it would continue burning in the thickest storm. They were literally living, breathing examples of people living by faith… genuinely.
I heard about 6 testimonies during that time, but 3 really stuck out to me (pseudonyms are used below for privacy purposes :)).
The first person I talked to was Bob. His heart wasn’t right with God, so asked Him for help. God answered, and through a gradual process was helped. What was interesting though, was that Bob mentioned finding the same ‘treasure’ we heard about that morning. I remember this part of the conversation so distinctively. It went something like this…
Me: “So what if you had a disease that ran in your family? For example diabetes? Would you still believe in God then?”
Bob: “Yes. Because our material possessions (including our body and life here on earth) are worth nothing compared to knowing Christ. It was like the theme verse for the last conference:
“What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ”
Me: (I was intrigued. How can you do that?!! Maybe the disease wasn’t bad enough. I’ll ask him about another disease, I thought.)
“Okay, what if it was cancer then?”
Bob: “It won’t change anything, I’d still believe in God.”
Me: (really surprised) “What?!!!! But you’ll be suffering and everything.”
(forgot exactly what he said, but he said something along these lines…
Bob: I’d still have the treasure though. To give you an example, let’s say you found a $1000, but then you lose it. If you got given $100 million, would losing that $1000 matter?”
Bob: “No, it wouldn’t because you’ve still got that $100 million.” The treasure of Christ is so precious it’s worth giving everything up for.
Wow, this was serious stuff. What was this treasure that was so precious? I really wanted to ask, but at the same time wanted to find it naturally myself.
By the next day, I still had no clue what this treasure was, so I asked someone else.
Sam: “My parents divorced when I was young, and my dad was murdered. It wasn’t easy, but God supported me through it all and helped me forgive the murderer. He didn’t want me carrying that burden… He really loves us you know. And I think, no matter what happens in the future, I believe He has my best interests at heart and that He’s got a good plan for me.”
I really didn’t know how to respond to Sam’s testimony. I can’t imagine how it’d feel to go through something like that.
As you may have guessed, I was still pretty much as clueless as before (but fascinated) about this ‘treasure’. I guess you could say I was going on a treasure hunt? Hahaha…
Reninta’s story was a bit different. She was only 19 when she had cancer. It was a rare cancer too, in her nose and throat area. Going through chemotherapy and radiotheraphy was hard for her, but God never left her side. He gave her strength. And a year later, she was completely healed. This is what she said:
“I believed that everything works out for our own good in the end and for us to glorify Him
I believe that it was God giving me the chance to really be a witness that even though I was physically weak; I can be spiritually strong. I think it was a test of faith and strength. God said to me “Reninta, if I took away this from you, will you still worship Me and lift up My name?” I continue to do so and to this day, I am being greatly rewarded.”
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” – 2 Corinthians 4:17
When Reninta finished sharing her testimony, I was breathless… how can someone – so young – go through something like that and stay so optimistic? I remember seeing her around camp and thinking she was such a happy character. She’s such a strong person… and I think it’s from God. I really admire her courage. Afterwards I realised… “hey, I want to have that faith too. Who is this God? Why have I never seen this side of Him before?” For the first time, I genuinely wanted to find out who God was, and know Him better.
At conference I saw a new side of God that I’d never felt for myself; a very loving, very caring and patient God. I felt a new unmoving peace in my heart… At first, I still couldn’t trust God with everything; but then after a day, I naturally could… I felt I could trust God with everything. It’s beyond words. It’s not like God took away all my troubles or anything, but he took away the emotional stress and is helping me manage myself. Whatever happens in the future, I know God is by my side and that ultimately He has planned for me to be with Him forever. Nothing can stand in the way of that plan.