hmmmmm. about five years ago, i've vaguely noticed a few university students at the English service, with the Campus Alive! (their uni outreach programme).
when Aunty Pauline started attending Chinese service, i also heard that she came because her daughter was one of those uni students. however, that famed "daughter" was also at Germany studying, so i didn't give it much thought.
Those were all vague memories lah. then last month, Helen came back from Germany, on a 6-week break. she was doing her degree in Engineering on full scholarship (fuah) there.
very interesting to hear her testimony. Basically her life was kinda broken because her parents were too busy with work to care about her, and her childhood had some horrible experiences. to the extent that she just built a wall around herself and used studies as an escape. no friends, no nothing. just festering wounds in her heart.
finally, when her unbelievable results got her full scholarships and she entered uni, a friend invited her to Campus Alive where she got to know Jesus for the first time. during praise and worship sessions, she somehow felt that her burdens were lifted away and cried for hours. it felt so good that she began to start attending in earnest, trying to know more about this God who gave her life meaning and joy.
ah. so that's how her life was changed, and also got a lot other miracles in her life. that's basically her story of knowing God.
so she spent six weeks in Malaysia, and we had a farewell dinner for her.
in these 6 weeks, she attended every single seminar and bible class and outing that she could.
every single one.
there were so many things i learnt from her.
the eagerness to know more, the incredible humility, the obedience to His words, the joy and peace in her, the genuine kindness from her smile.
basically, the very example of good soil.
"3 Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: “Behold, a sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. 7 And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. 8 But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”"- Matthew 13:3-9
ever since i was a kid, being a (conceivably) second-generation Christian, i had my share of bible stories and verses in Sunday School. read this parable again and again. and like every kid, i wanted to be the best one.
the good ground. where there are crops pleasing to the eye.
Helen's "farewell speech". not only that, her life in this 6 weeks at Malaysia. reminded me of so many things:
1. the importance of a hundred percent obedience.
99% obedience equals 100% disobedience. i knew perfectly well that He has planned everything for me. yet there are still fear and doubts in my heart.
God works in ways that we humans can never comprehend. with Helen's life, God also changed the life of her mother, and through Aunty Pauline, who also heard the word and acted on it, changed the lives of many many single mothers.
her work in the single mom ministry is seriously impressive. and it's amazing to see kids from broken families being able to smile again. who would have seen this happening?
2. the heart. is what God looks at.
3. depend on Him. wholeheartedly.
for when He is for us, who can be against us? His work is the only worthwhile job in our whole lives. something with eternal value.
4. never think that you're good enough.
hahah this is not some perfectionist statement. it's just that, sometimes my pride eats me up from within. i thought that i knew it all, seen it all, heard it all. but the way Helen drank up everything she could get her hands on, to bring back and bless her church and friends at Germany. bam!
there're so many people lost in this world today. the anti-christ trend everywhere, the tendency for people to drown themselves in basically anything available so that they don't have to face the question deep down in their hearts--- where do we go after death?
that day, when we passed by the junction to Mist Club, a billboard proclaimed "500 meters to happiness" with an arrow pointing to Mist.
seriously? a night at the club, drinking yourself senseless to forget everything.
is that real happiness?
i'm at an age, where crossroads in life were inevitable.
choices choices choices.
work, study, travel, exercise, health, family, wealth.
all very important factors in one's life. but seriously, can you bring any of these with you when you leave this world?
anyway. the pic above reminded me so much of Helen. her everlasting optimism, which came from depending on God.
Joyce Koh Yin Shi! trust on God! be joyful! stop being anxious!
goodbye, Helen. you're the first Helen that i've ever met. good luck in your future. :D