In December 2017, God’s conviction and calling of me to serve Him long-term gave me so much peace that I left my secular job of 10-years, to pursue God and to live a life to honor and glorify Him. During that time, I did not have any plan for the near future (when I returned from my mission trip). I left Singapore with a prayer for my Lord Jesus to teach me His Way and His Truth and how I can follow Him in my life (John 14:6).
The Backpack That Was Lost and Found
OMF was really great to arrange a vision trip for me to Thailand so that I could understand God’s work, the people He had created, the culture of Thailand and the life of the full-time workers.
The first day I arrived in Chiang Mai, God gave me the first surprise – my backpack, full of clothes, was left at Bangkok during transit. I was scheduled to travel to another small town the next day, and without my backpack, I wondered how I would get through.
I prayed and asked for prayer support from my family in Christ, that God would send my backpack to me that night. I was thankful that after waiting for a few hours, my backpack was sent to me – in one piece and dirty.
Asking God “Why?”
During the month in North Thailand, I visited many ministries (Diaspora, AIDS Care, Christmas Outreach etc.). I stayed with missionaries and experienced what their life is like as a single-lady, family, and a couple without children.
It was arranged for me to attend a conference to understand more about the Buddhist culture of Thailand and the rituals they practiced, and how contextualization can be done. It was really a journey where a huge part involved cross-culture shock.
I still remembered I asked God, “Why did you send me to Thailand?” and “What are you showing me?”. These questions came when I felt that I was not experiencing the things as I had expected, and I became impatient. I experienced loneliness, uncertainties, discomfort of moving around every few days.
Launch into Mission
In the second month, I was thankful to join the Launch Course which was organized by OMF for Serve Asia Workers. The participants came from 7 different countries, they were mainly young and really devoted to reach people and bring the good news of God’s grace to different parts of the world.
The course included classroom lessons on cross-cultural work, different religions, biblical aspect of mission, self-care on the field and also a field trip to understand missional business.
I really appreciated how this course was conducted, I learned a lot from these young participants. Launch also provided a real-life experience of working with people from all around the world, how different cultures behave and work with one another, how conflict and dispute is to be managed.
Overall, the greatest lesson God wants us to learn is – LOVE (1 Cor 13), and loving Him above all, and the neighbors He sends to our midst (Matt 22:37-39), because the motivation for all we do is to love Him for who He is and bring glory and honor to Him.
Just when I was adapting and adjusting to the culture, people, environment and feeling comfortable, I needed to leave to another place in Thailand, where the culture and people group is totally different.
During the preparation for my final presentation at Launch Course, I researched the next place I would be going. I was caught by the greatest shock and fear, I thought of the bible verse from Luke 10:3 “Go! I am sending you out like lambs among the wolves.”.
New Love and Compassion
Over the next few days, I visited many places and spoke to many locals. There are 3 common questions that the locals ask a foreigner:
- What is your religion?
- Why are you here?
- Why are you not afraid?
I should have felt intimidated and threatened by these questions, but instead I felt sad and overwhelmed by the need for peace that only our Lord Jesus can give.
When I saw street art near the local market, where bombings sometimes occur, sharing messages of peace it seemed God was asking me if I am willing to go and show the people the love and grace that they need from our Lord Jesus.
Adjusting to Home and Facing the Future
My Lord Jesus has realigned my focus to Him and the people He had created who truly need to know His grace and love. He has also removed the bias in me, and I am really thankful for His grace upon me.
I am back to Singapore for almost a month now, while waiting to meet with church leaders to talk about the future steps to serve God long-term and one day be able to go back to tell the people I love them, just as much as God loves them.
Will You Pray?
- To fix my eyes on Jesus, no matter what challenges I face and be satisfied in Him (2 Cor 4:18)
- To join Church as an intern to be equipped to serve God long-term, and to develop spiritual gifts
- Unbelieving family members’ hearts to be softened and open to the truth, love and grace of Jesus
- More opportunity to learn about the people group that God puts in my heart
Interested in attending Launch?
Launch into mission: Learn more here