Finding Him in Our Midst
By Rev Doh Chuan Ning
July 16, 2023
Pondering the Putonghua Ministry’s experience over the past six months, memories of three soul-touching moments came to mind.
From February 16 onward, our Crown of Grace (Senior) Fellowship added a Thursday online session to the usual fellowship time on Sunday at noon. Every time, a brother or sister would tell their life story. Listening to the seniors share how they have walked the journey of life till today and the hills and valleys they have been through often inspires our respect for life. We are also at awe at God’s leading, keeping and care for each. One senior shared how he believed in Christ when young but strayed from the Lord until one day, feeling bruised and broken, he finally thought about the Lord again. While he was grieving due to a deep sense of sorrow and guilt towards the Lord, he found to his surprise that the Lord “…was there waiting for me, waiting for me with patience and lovingkindness. He gazed at me with profound love, and He stretched out His arms to embrace me. He comforted me and said, ‘My child, it is good that you are back. Everything can start afresh.’” Looking back at the path one has been through often gets back in touch with many wounds and pains. Nevertheless, with the Lord’s gentle invitation, the wounds and pains make our lives more closely connected to Him.
The second moment that deeply touched me was an online prayer meeting. Two to three times every month, we pray to the Lord through hymns and meditation. We learn to listen to Him and notice His presence in our lives. A senior shared that one afternoon, she was tired and fell asleep with the air conditioner directly blowing on her. During her sleep, she suddenly felt that someone tapped her a couple of times, waking her up. She opened her eyes but saw nobody around. Then she realized that it must have been God who woke her up so she would not fall sick again because of the air conditioner blowing on her when she slept. At the prayer meetings, we share our experience of encountering the Lord. That lets us understand thoroughly this: Our Lord is One who is present in our daily lives. If only we take time and pay attention to notice, we will be able to see the footprints of His presence in our lives.
The third moment is a farewell gathering. Close to 100 brothers and sisters came to bid farewell to a couple, the Ng’s (吳家恆伉儷), who were migrating to the UK to join their children. At that moment of separation, a lot of the times that we went through together came back to mind: We saw that they have simple faith in the Lord and were baptized; we saw that one after another senior came to know and grow in the Lord because of them; we saw that they visited different families every day (they were still visiting the day before they left Hong Kong); we saw how they liked to convey care for brothers and sisters by phone… We could see in them deep and selfless love. That day when I was thinking how to express gratitude to them, this came to my mind: “Uncle Ng, Auntie Ng, it is so good that we have been together all this time and be loved and cared for by you…” Indeed, the Ng’s have displayed how Christ loves man, helping the Putonghua congregation become one of love. I earnestly hope that we will be able to learn from them and live out the love of Christ.
May the Lord of the church bless us, enabling us to be a congregation which always “see” His presence and which genuinely love one another.