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People p Features Happenings pp g

Issue 2/2008

The FAMILY Special! Building the Christian Family You Never Had Facing the No-Baby Blues Real Life Miracles

www.trinity.net


The Prayer Telescope The brilliant scientist Sir Isaac Newton said that he could take his telescope and look millions and millions of miles into space. Then he added, “But when I lay it aside, go into my room, shut the door, and get down on my knees in earnest prayer, I see more of Heaven and feel closer to the Lord than if I were assisted by all the telescopes on earth.�


Church Prayer Meetings The place for meeting God, seeing God’s perspective and hearing God’s Voice. Isaiah 43:19 – SEE, I am doing a new thing? Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? We “perceive” when we ”pray”! Be there at Church Prayer Meeting! Jun 11 • Jul 2 • Aug 6 • Sep 3 • Oct 1 • Nov 5 • Dec 3


The Trinitarian. . .

A unique opportunity for advertisers Take advantage of our Special Package Rates! Trinitarian magazine is a quality Christian publication y. with articles relevant to life in a contemporary society. Published quarterly by Trinity Christian Centre, it has a readership of at least 14,000, and reaches the churches in Singapore, the entire congregation of Trinity Christian Centre, and 2,000 visitors of Trinity. It is also available online in full colour at www.trinity.net Our special package rates will help stretch your advertising dollar. Don’t miss it! For advertising rates, contact Janica Chan or Veronica Teo at 6468 4444 or email admin@trinity.org.sg

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Trinity Christian Centre Celebration Services 2008 Trinity@Adam 21 Adam Road

Contents

ENGLISH SERVICES Adult Services, Nursery & DiscoveryLand* Sat 5pm Sun 10am Pre-teens Service (age 10-12) Sat 5pm IGNYTE Service (age 13-19) Sat 5pm CHINESE SERVICE Sun 10am FILIPINO SERVICES Sun 10am Sun 3pm

Trinity@Paya Lebar 247 Paya Lebar Road ENGLISH SERVICES Adult Services, Nursery & DiscoveryLand* Sat 5pm Sun 8.30am Sun 11.30am Pre-teens Service (age 10-12) Sat 5pm Sun 11.30am IGNYTE Service (age 13-19) Sat 5pm Sun 11.30am CHINESE SERVICES **Sun 8.30am Sun 11.30am INDONESIAN SERVICE Sun 11.30am THAI SERVICE Sun 6.30pm * Nursery (birth to age 4) & DiscoveryLand (age 4 -12) ** With Cantonese interpretation through earphones. Information is correct at time of printing, and is subject to change.

Radio Ministry Thought for the Day FM 107 - Mon to Fri 7.40am & 10.30pm (repeat broadcast)

TRINITY CHRISTIAN CENTRE Tel: 6468 4444 • Fax: 6467 6005 Email: admin@trinity.org.sg Website: www.trinity.net Trinity@Adam 21 Adam Road Trinity@Paya Lebar 247 Paya Lebar Road

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10

21 Features 10 The Famil Family Yo You Never Had Creating a safe haven

18 7 Tips for Pioneer Parents Pioneering a new path

28 Facing the No-baby Blues Empty arms, heavy burden

31 Baby Blues Too The Second Time Around

32 Myths about Infertility Which ones do you believe?

34 All in the Family Aligning our relationships

62 The Blessing Press in for it!


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34

44

Snapshots

Buzz

People

58 A Trinitarian Tradition

50 Look Who I Brought to Church

21 When My Son Washed the Dishes

The Sermon Series

Trinitarians care & connect

70 New! At Trinity@Paya Lebar

54 Connected! By all means

72 Make your Difference! As a corporate donor

To the nations’

92 GUILTY! blog

Young Adults forum

An insider’s look

IGYNTE at play

80 Hungry? IGNYTE gets fed-up

23 Children of Conviction Shaping young lives

90 Power Trip

76 Friends, Foe and Lovers 78 WooHoo!

Real Life Miracles

94 Easter 2008 What a weekend!

42 I was a DiscoveryLand Kid! A young adult remembers

44 Life Reloaded When God makes all things new

60 Who Brought You to Church? Our L-Team pastors share

88 Passionate Heartbeat Missions Convention

96 70 Embark on UK Programme

68 My Divine Assignment Our Resident Apostle speaks

At TCA College

99 Gone in Three Hours

82 I was a Ministry Intern Two graduate speak

Extraordinary! 7


We see our worship services, prayer W meetings and carecells as places where m

Vibrant Atmosphere

people p eop hunger for the presence of God and an nd where God delights to inhabit and dwell. d we In a vibrant atmosphere of worship, prayer p ray and discipleship, we see people encountering God and the manifestation e nco of signs, wonders and miracles. o

Adviser Wang Look Fung Chief Editor Pastor Janice Chng Editor Huang Rui Lin Sub-Editor Corinne Lim Editorial Support Tan Rou’en Veronica Teo

Incredible Unity

Passionate Heartbeat We see a people consumed with a vision to touch the world for

We see Trinity Christian Centre as a

Jesus Christ and to see His glory

church living together in covenantal

displayed throughout the world.

relationships; where carecells, ministries, families and individuals

We see a church with a passionate heartbeat to fulfill God’s global

are flowing in corporate unity to

agenda through sending men

fulfill God’s purpose and plan for

and women of faith to equip and

the church for that hour.

empower cell churches.

We see the church as a place for the

Strategic Leadership

empowerment and development of Spirit-filled leaders who will be strategically positioned and deployed within the Body of Christ. Every Trinitarian a leader with a ministry.

Passionate Honour

Contributing Writers Rev Dominic Yeo Gillian Ang Rev Jeffrey Wong Lorraine Chee Pastor David Chng Kevin Kwang Pastor Edward Lim Michelle Leong Mary E. DeMuth Tan Rou’en Sandra Glahn Contributing Photographers Law Kian Yan Phyllis Phua Pastor Darick Yeo Madeleine Sim Lorraine Chee Daniel Tan Eileen Chong Melanie Tan Jesmond Ho Yeo Rong Rong Daphne Hong Yeo YiXin Diana Lim Advertising Sales & Admin Janica Chan Veronica Teo For ad sales enquiries, Tel: 6468 4444 Email: admin@trinity.org.sg Mailing Address Singapore Post Centre Post Office PO Box 616 Singapore 914021 Website www.trinity.net Email admin@trinity.org.sg

Passion to love and honour God

ISSUE 2/2008

Audacious Fervour Boldness and zeal to believe and ask largely for the impossible

Relentless Belief Unwavering belief in people and their God-given destiny

Contagious Faith Authentic and infectious faith that reaches out to the lost

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The Trinitarian is published quarterly by Trinity Christian Centre. Company registration number 197802911H MICA (P) 023/03/2008 Printed in Singapore by Print & Print Pte Ltd License number L001/01/2008 All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without express written permission is prohibited. Opinions and views expressed do not necessarily constitute the official stand of the church.


We’ve got Mail! Star Letter

I always feel refreshed in the Lord

The Trinitarian magazine is an excellent media platform to know

after reading through the Trinitarian

what is happening in the church and to its pastors. As the church

magazine! I was especially encouraged

is growing quickly, the magazine keeps us Trinitarians informed

by Rev Les Bowling’s article, “Go a

and updated.

Little Further.” This was a reminder for me to press on even when I feel I can’t

The article “Fashion

go further.

Fusion”, about the husband and wife team

My colleague also enjoys reading

who run a business

the magazine. This is what she said:

together, spoke deeply

“Thanks for sharing the Trinitarian

to my wife and I. The

magazine with me. I always look forward

couple found more joy

to the magazine as there are lots of

d than conflict, and received God’s blessing when they trusted God

testimonies and Bible verses which

for their business. It spoke to us because we ourselves are about

encourage me. It never fails to make

to embark on a similar journey!

me feel closer to God!” Daphne Tan, risk analyst

The missions issue was very inspiring. I brought the magazine to the office and my colleagues said that the missions report seemed to be coming from a number of churches rather than from just one church. It’s amazing to know what God has done! Marcus Cheng, Air Force officer

Win!

COOL TEE FROM FUNKY B

The Trinitarian magazine is always very edifying and faith-building! There are so many attractive articles and encouraging testimonies. The design is excellent, and the content covers different topics and issues. I was very especially encouraged by the testimonies “A Widow’s Might” and “My Handphone Angel”. Peter Leong, project manager

Tell us what you think off the Trinitarian magazine! ne! What articles would you ou like to see in future issues? ues? SMS <Trinity>space<your your feedback> to 77177 orr email we_are_trinitarians@trinity.org.sg i i

Spread the word… and shout His fame! Help us widen the impact of Trinitarian magazine! Take extra copies and place them in your office, retail space, café or doctor’s waiting room. Who knows… that testimony or article might just speak to someone at their point of need, and get them connected to God!

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Building the Christian Family You Never Had HOW PIONEER PARENTS CAN CREATE A SAFE HAVEN FOR THEIR KIDS

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Perhaps you are a first-generation Christian and didn’t grow up in a Christian family. Or maybe your family was dysfunctional. How do you pioneer

Will I repeat my parents’ mistakes?

How will I parent if I’ve had no positive, godly example?

Why, when I read Christian parenting books, do I feel like the author can’t relate to me?

How do I protect my children from possible

a new path and create a truly Christian

negative influence of my parents without

home for your children? Mary E.

harming their relationship?

DeMuth shares her experience.

As a Pioneer Parent, these questions have swirled around in my paranoid head ever since I birthed

MOST PARENTS want to create an environment

my first child. Thirteen years later, sometimes

where their children feel safe. Yet you may have

they still haunt me. How do we break free from

grown up in a place where fear reigned. Or perhaps

harmful parenting patterns? How do we build a

it was rage. Or violence. Or an obsession with

Christian foundation in our homes if we’ve had

body fat. We all come from dysfunctional families,

no example? How do we make our home a haven

because all families are made up of sinners. But there

for our children?

are degrees of dysfunction, and chances are, you or someone you love grew up in a

The one safe place

threatening environment. You may

To pioneer a safe, loving place for

be haunted by the fear that you will parent your children the way you were parented. Are you a pioneer parent? Pioneer Parents are those who don’t

We need to realise that outside of our relationship with Jesus Christ, there is no safe place.

our children, we need to realise that outside of our relationship with Jesus Christ, there is no safe place. This world is racked with terrorism, child abductions, drug abuse, suicide, and a host of other malevolent

want to duplicate the homes they

forces. Jesus said, “In the world you

were raised in. They share many

have tribulation, but take courage;

common traits, the most common being fear. They

I have overcome the world” (John 16:33, NASB).

ask themselves questions like:

The only safe place isn’t a location but a Person:

Will the hurtful words my parents said to me

Jesus. “The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the

fly out of my mouth in a moment of anger?

righteous run to it and are safe.” (Proverbs 18:10)

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The psalmist acknowledged that the only true

experiences, it is difficult to picture what a safe

refuge from our earthly fears is found in God’s strong

place does look like. We need to understand the

arms. “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you

meaning and characteristics of safe places. With that

alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:8).

in mind, consider the following characteristics:

Although it is naive to think we can provide an entirely safe place for our children, it is possible with God’s help to foster a warm, secure parental bond with a child.

1 A safe place is a refuge. Just as a wildlife refuge protects animals from bullets and arrows, a safe home protects a child from life’s barbs. It’s a place where a child can fall apart and not fear judgment.

Not having a safe place grew a weed of insecurity in

When I was a junior-high teacher, I noticed an

my heart, and the tendrils still wrap around my heart

interesting dynamic in two types of students. When

today. Growing up in an unprotected environment,

I met the parents of some students who were out of

I seldom felt taken care of. The result of this neglect

control at school, the parents were often surprised

was two fold. It gave me a passionate desire to love

to hear about their child’s outbursts. They’d say

my own children fiercely, but it also made me worry

something like, “Well, she isn’t that way at home,”

that I would repeat my parents’ mistakes. Would my

and then they’d look at me as if I were Mephistopheles

children feel as unsafe as I did when I was a girl?

in the flesh for suggesting such a thing.

That worry still haunts me today. Although it is naive to think we can provide an entirely safe

Sometimes, when I met with the parents of an

place for our children, it is possible with God’s

I’ll-do-anything-for-an-A student, they’d raise their

help to foster a warm, secure parental bond with a

eyebrows and say, “He certainly doesn’t act that way

child. Not only is it possible, but it’s essential. Our

at home. He’s been climbing the walls.” The kids who

children’s first task is attaching to a person who will

worked diligently at school, who did extra credit

(hopefully) protect them.

to get an A-plus, seemed to have the freedom to fall apart at home, to let down after a day of school stress.

What a safe home looks like

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We may instinctively know what a safe place

My unscientific proposition is this: Safe homes

does not look like, but because of our negative

allow children to fall apart; unsafe homes don’t.


The truth is, we all fall apart, and God designed the family as a holy refuge – a place where both acne and anger can erupt. It doesn’t mean a family is a place to take license; instead, it’s a safe place where love overlooks the acne of character and enables a child

broken pasts, infuses them

Part of successful pioneer parenting is unlearning old patterns, pressing into God’s warm embrace and parental heart, and learning His ways.

to work through anger.

with His healing, and through the Holy Spirit enables us to forge new parenting paths. The apostle Paul encouraged the Christians living in ancient Ephesus with these words: “God can do anything, you know – far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest

dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but

2 A safe place is a demonstration of God’s parenting skills.

by working within us, His Spirit deeply and gently

We are representatives of God to

demonstrating God’s nature to our children, but

our children. Whether we grew

we cannot do that unless God redeems our broken

up in a stable or a chaotic home, our task is to

within us” (Ephesians 3:20, The Message). We have the privilege as pioneer parents of

pasts and parents our kids through us.

uncover the true characteristics of God that our parents’ sinful natures marred. God is not the same as our earthly parents, even the good ones. As injurious, aloof, or neglectful. Even the best

3 A safe place is grace infused.

parents fall short of demonstrating God’s perfect,

Because the one truly safe place is

unconditional love. And so will we.

in the arms of our heavenly Father,

our heavenly Parent, He is not critical, condemning,

if we as parents are to provide a But we can grow in godliness as we raise our

safe place for our children, we need

children. Part of successful pioneer parenting is

to demonstrate grace. Jesus modeled this concept

unlearning old patterns, pressing into God’s warm

when he welcomed the children who clambered

embrace and parental heart, and learning His ways.

onto his grace-filled lap (Matthew 19:13-14).

God is in the redeeming business. He takes our

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My friend Jack, now a parent, wants to create a

I was a pest as a child. Because I didn’t feel that my

home of grace. “I want my daughters to know there

mother cared about me, I constantly asked,

is nothing they can do to make me not love them.”

“Do you love me?” I asked for hugs and relished her spontaneous affection. As pioneer parents, it’s

His daughter once asked, “Daddy, will you love me if

imperative that we watch for cues from our children.

I hit my sister?”

When mine pester me to hug them, I know I am failing to instill a deep knowledge that they are

Jack responded, “Honey, I would be very disappointed

loved. I want my children to wonder wide-eyed at

if you hit your sister, and I would have to discipline

the God who gave them life. I don’t want them to

you, but I will always love you.”

wonder whether I love them.

That’s a grace-infused home.

4 A safe place is a place where a child doesn’t wonder about love.

5 A safe place has clear boundaries and expectations. A certain school had an unfenced playground. Children, afraid of the

A child does not live in a safe

nearby street traffic, huddled near the playground

place if he or she is constantly

equipment during recess and avoided the open field

wondering, Do my parents really love me? If I died,

near the street. A smart principal erected a fence

would Mommy miss me? To feel safe, children must

around the field, and suddenly the children ran and

know from the top of their tangle-haired heads to

played freely – right up to the edge of the street.

the bottom of their toe- jammed toes that their

A simple chain-link fence provided a boundary

parents love them – no matter what.

that created freedom and spontaneity inside its protective enclosure.

As pioneer parents, it’s imperative that we watch for cues from our children.

Parents, because they love their children, will set boundaries by letting them know what is and isn’t allowed. If there are no family rules, chaos results – not necessarily overtly, but in the heart of a child. Children who have to determine their own

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set of rules never really know where they stand with their

Dusting our children off,

parents, and they are ill-equipped to determine rules in the first place. A child without boundaries growing up will struggle in adulthood to learn to erect appropriate boundaries.

tousling their hair, and lovingly setting them back on their feet helps them

6 A safe place gives children freedom to fail. A safe place, however, isn’t a straitjacket of

learn that failure is a normal part of life.

rules and regulations. Pioneer parents need not become Pharisaical legalists, doling out so many parameters that they confuse and overwhelm their children. In a safe place, realistic ground rules are set. Children who break those simple rules are disciplined with love. Just as Jesus Christ disciplines us for our own good, so we must discipline our children. But we stop short of barraging them with reminders of their failures. Children will fail to meet our expectations; it’s one of life’s realities. Dusting our children off, tousling their hair, and lovingly setting them back on their feet helps them learn that failure is a normal part of life.

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Our goal should be to correct our children’s behaviour while still delighting in their individuality.

When we freely admit our failures – even our parenting mistakes – to our children, we create a safe place for our families. We demonstrate the truth that at times we all fail, and we all are in desperate need of God’s forgiveness, grace, and empowerment. Our goal should be to correct our children’s behaviour while still delighting in their individuality. A stable home provides freedom to fail within the context of grace. For our children to grow up into autonomous adults who revel in their God-given individuality, they must understand the nuances of God’s unconditional love. We give them that understanding as we live out unconditional love in our own lives. “You are a good parent” The insecurity I’ve nursed about providing a safe home for my children is at times a nondescript fear; at other times it strangles me. A few moments stand out to me, little

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glimpses, really, that help me continue down this

loosened; I gasped, breathing in free air for the first

pioneering path.

time in nine years of parenthood. As I look back on those freedom-filled words, I realise that in saying

One snapshot is when my friend Heidi came to visit

them aloud, I was declaring God’s ability to heal me.

in 1999. At the end of her stay, she held my gaze.

God is in the business of gathering hurting people

“You’re a good mother, Mary. Your children know

and transforming them into dependent followers

you love them.”

of His Son. It is our weakness that allows God to do His work. The apostle Paul emphasised this when

Her words salved my fearful heart. Growing up, I felt

he said,

I was in the way. I worried that I would project that same feeling onto my children. Knowing an outsider

Isn’t it obvious that God deliberately chose men

saw that my children knew I loved them eased much

and women that the culture overlooks and exploits

of my worry.

and abuses, chose these “nobodies” to expose the hollow pretensions of the “somebodies”? That

Another snapshot. Just two years after Heidi’s visit,

makes it quite clear that none of you can get by

I was sitting on the love seat in our Texas living

with blowing your own horn before God. Everything

room. In the quiet of evening with the kids tucked in

that we have – right thinking and right living, a

bed, the Lord said, “Mary, I want you to say ‘I am

clean slate and a fresh start – comes from God by

a good mother’ out loud.”

way of Jesus Christ. (1 Corinthians 1:27-30, The Message)

“Really?” I asked, without giving voice to my thoughts. Being a Pioneer Parent and building the Christian “Yes.”

family you’ve never had is no easy task, particularly when we’re plagued by worry that we’ll duplicate

It took me a long time to say the words. I’m not

the homes we were raised in. But we will scale the

sure why I was so afraid; perhaps I was worried that

difficult peak of parenting – by God’s grace. Through

I would sound self-absorbed or self-important if I

God’s grace, our children will never have to say,

spoke them into the air.

“I didn’t grow up in a safe home.”

“I am a good mother,” I whispered.

Used with permission. Excerpt from Building the Christian Family You Never Had (WaterBrook, 2006) by

As soon as I said it, the noose around my heart

Mary E. DeMuth. Find Mary at www.marydemuth.com

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7

TIPS for Pioneer Parents Mary E. DeMuth shares 7 practical tips w which, along with the power of the Holy Spirit, will help you build the C Christian family you never had.

Read parenting books with a caveat of grace. When I first became a mom, I read every Christian parenting book I could find, determined not to repeat my past. I highlighted words until the pages glowed yellow. With every book I read, I berated myself for not being a perfect Christian mother. Instead of letting the words encourage me to improve my parenting, I would shun myself for not parenting correctly. I didn’t offer myself grace. Eventually, I learned to see the books as kindly companions instead of angry Pharisees, pointing out my failures. I had to remind myself to be gentler toward me – a sinner in need of grace – and understand afresh that God delighted in me, sang over me. He was not watching me read parenting books and mumbling, “Well, I sure hope she bucks up and parents better after reading this.” No, God, as I’ve had to learn, comes alongside me, cheering me when I fail, and giving me confidence as a parent.

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Find or observe a parenting mentor. Of all the campaigns I’ve initiated to try to improve my parenting, finding a mentor has been the most effective. I have learned the importance of engaging parents who are raising stable, well-adjusted children. The most rewarding parentingmentor relationship I experienced happened on walks with my friend Kathy. She had two grown children who were serving Christ full-time. Pushing a double stroller as I walked a mile or two around the neighbourhood with her, I peppered her with questions, she listening and praying and offering advice.


I’ll admit it’s not easy to find a

Confessing our sins to our children

mentor like Kathy. If you can’t

and asking their forgiveness opens

find one, remember that

the door to communication, de-

mentors can come in surprising

escalates heated arguments, and

packages. I’ve been “mentored”

shows children that even parents

by kind mothers in the grocery

need the restorative forgiveness

store who answer my questions

of Jesus.

patiently, by grandparents who get on the floor and play with their grandchildren, by friends who share their trials and victories with me. The most surprising mentor in my life has been my eldest daughter who is now old enough to baby-sit. Watching her kind patience with toddlers inspires me to be a more patient mommy.

Say, “I’m sorry.” Pioneer parents – and all parents for that matter – make mistakes. We say painful words that we heard our parents say– words that once stung us, words that now sting our children. The best way to disarm sin is to admit it. No parents are perfect. Trying to appear sinless (particularly during a bout of anger) causes children to worry about how they “made” mommy or daddy be mean.

Understand that parenting is not outside-in, but inside-out. I used to think parenting successfully meant finding the “best” strategies and practicing them. Though good parenting strategies are helpful, particularly for Pioneer Parents, they lacked real power. I realised I could impose all sorts of methods from the outside, but my heart (where parenting starts) remained the same. To parent differently than how I was raised, my heart needed to be healed. David said, “What you’re after is truth from the inside out. Enter me, then; conceive a new, true life” (Psalm 51:6, The Message).

God is in the business of cleaning, healing and rejuvenating our hearts from the inside out. The greater the healing, the more authentic and effective our parenting will be. Forgive your parents. Jesus told us to forgive, plain and simple. Sometimes He even used impossible math: 70 times 7– 490 times! Holding bitterness in your heart, shunning forgiveness, actually hinders you from parenting freely in the present. Forgiveness sets you free – free to love your imperfect parents, free to give grace to your imperfect self as you struggle to parent differently. It’s not pretending nothing happened back there; on the contrary, forgiveness is a revolutionary, brave act. How is forgiveness connected to pioneer parenting? Picture a thick iron chain around you and your family of origin. If you choose not to forgive, the chain keeps you connected to the past. It stifles your heart so that you cannot

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parent effectively today. Choosing to forgive causes the chain to fall away, setting you free to parent your children differently.

Stop the comparison game.

Few acts are more destructive than comparison. I’ve caught myself observing other parents not to glean pointers about parenting, but to chide them or myself. I will never parent that way, I think, which can either mean I don’t want to be like that parent or I am an utter failure at parenting well. Jogging through my neighbourhood one day, God taught me a comparison lesson. Each yard was different. Some sported “Yard of the Month” signs. Others hatched weeds. I realised that the sanctification journey is different for me, as my “growing up” yard may have had bad soil and not enough sun. Comparing myself to Yard of the Month

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parents, who may have had affirming upbringings, was unfair. God asks us to concentrate on our own yard, to pull one weed at a time, to revel in one flower planted. Paul says, “That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original” (Galatians 5:26, The Message). A chapter later, Paul asserts, “But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another” (Galatians 6:4 NAS). Find support. My parenting skills

vent. Paul says that we are to “bear one another’s burdens and thus fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:4 NAS). Finding like-minded pioneer parents who are willing to share struggles lightens burdens. As I shared my burdens, and listened to other Pioneer Parents share theirs, I realised I was a normal parent with typical struggles – with a big God who ultimately shouldered every burden. In the company of likeminded friends I’m able to laugh at my mistakes and continue down the pioneer parenting path. Being a Pioneer Parent is no easy task, particularly when we’re plagued by worry that we’ll duplicate the homes we were raised in. In granting ourselves grace, seeking mentors, saying I’m sorry, seeking insideout healing, forgiving our parents, eliminating comparison, and finding friends who bear our burdens, we will scale the difficult peak of parenting, by God’s grace.

increased when I found other pioneer parents who struggled

Used with permission. Adapted from Building the Christian Family

just like me. When I’ve had a

You Never Had (WaterBrook, 2006)

particularly difficult parenting day,

by Mary E. DeMuth. Find Mary at

I’ll call a fellow pioneer parent and

www.marydemuth.com


I knew God was real

when my son started washing the dishes! 21


When her elder son Desmond started washing the dishes, it simply confirmed a hunch Iris Lam had: There is a God, and His name is Jesus! Within six months, Iris and her younger son also gave their lives to Jesus, and together, they experienced a total turnaround in their family life.

DESMOND SPEAKS Desmond Kho, fitness trainer I was the type of person whom people can’t believe would get saved. You know the kind; you probably know a couple of people like that. I was ‘anti-Christ’. I didn’t like Christians, and I didn’t hide my disdain of them. Maybe it’s because of certain encounters I had with Christians. I felt that

It was a sight for co-ordinator Iris Lam to behold.

instead of being loved, I was judged by them and

Instead of simply dumping his plate at the kitchen

looked upon as someone “unclean”.

sink, her 26-year-old son Desmond was washing it. She stared in amazement as he nonchalantly

There is a Navy advertisement that poses the

picked up the sponge and began washing the plate.

question: “If your life were made into a movie, what

She was tempted to pinch herself to see if it was a

would it be like?” I knew the answer. Mine would

dream. He had never done this before. “I thought

be a short film because too much would have to be

to myself, if my son can wash the dishes, then God

censored out. That’s the kind of life I led. I was very

must be real!”

proud. I didn’t think that I needed God. Actually, I thought I was God; all things are possible for

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It had been an eventful week; so much had

me, and nothing is too difficult for me! Doesn’t

happened in such a short time. Desmond had

that sound like God? So for 26 years, I led a life that

just received Jesus as Lord and Saviour at Trinity.

only God and I knew about. I was never a good

He, a feisty objector to Christianity, had become a

son, never a good brother, never a good family

Christian. The turnaround was both dramatic and

member to my loved ones. All I cared about was I,

drastic. It was so real that Iris, her younger son

me and myself. In order to achieve what I want,

Martin, and Martin’s girlfriend Tammy all received

I would “stab” my way up the ladder of promotion.

Christ within six months.

I worshipped money and power.


As a fitness trainer, I was proud that I could

family and three lovely children. How could he

command an hourly rate higher than what my peers

and his family still love me when I can’t even love

in other fields were earning. I had a real huge ego.

myself? I desperately needed a place to find peace.

I felt that my clients had to fit into my schedule;

So I did the unthinkable. I sent a text message to my

I wouldn’t take any appointments before 10am

uncle, asking him if I could visit his church one day.

and after 2pm. That’s the kind of attitude I had. I

(My uncle had invited us to a few events before, but

was earning far more than I expected, and was

I was always reluctant to go.) His reply was quick.

spending it faster than I earned it. It was wild. My

By God’s plan, the pastor would be reading out a

promotion was rapid. A client who trained under

testimony about him that day. Afraid that my mum

me won rugby competitions. I was selected as

would scold me for wanting to

one of the youth coaches

go to church, I lied to her that

for the national weight-

“U “Uncle Leslie asked me to go to

lifting team. I was featured in

h church”. his

some newspapers and media articles. I felt successful.

W We all went to church together – my mum and I, along with my

Because of my self-centered

uncle, his wife and his children.

behaviour, my girlfriend left me.

I didn’t know the songs the

It could not have happened

people were singing, or what

at a worse time. I was in credit card debt. My career was going downhill because I couldn’t push myself to strive like before. My relationship with my dad was very bad; in fact, we weren’t even on talking terms. That night when my girlfriend left me, I went home and walked to the window, but I didn’t have the guts to jump. I couldn’t sleep and yet I couldn’t cry. The next morning, as I sat in front of my computer, I thought of my uncle and wondered how he managed his life – he had a good career, a caring

The moment I reached church, I felt like someone reached into my heart and just untied all those knots I had inside.

the pastor was preaching. All I knew was, the moment I reached church, I felt like someone reached into my heart and just untied all those knots I had inside. Tears started to flow. I tried to stop crying because there were quite a lot of pretty ladies in Trinity, and I didn’t want to look bad in front of them, but I simply couldn’t!

23


There I heard a voice that said, “Leave it to Me.” I knew it was God.

Then I remember

receive Christ because I had a few altars at home

Pastor Sabrina, who

and had to decide what to do with them. He

was hosting the

respected my decision but made this one statement:

service, said, “For

“You will be surprised by the power of God.”

those who have been taking things into

One of these altars in my home was placed at the

your own hands and now your life is in a mess, raise

window of my HDB flat. Shortly after that visit to

your hands if you would like Jesus to help you.” I did

Trinity where Desmond received Christ, I received a

and I went to the altar. There I heard a voice that

warning letter from HDB stating that I would be

said, “Leave it to Me.” I knew it was God. I had made

fined $5000 if I did not remove the altar hanging

a mess of my life, and had nothing to give Him but

at my window. I took the opportunity to remove it,

brokenness. My tears flowed continuously. Honestly,

and saw it as a preparation for me to receive Christ.

it felt good to cry. Crying made me feel human again. When Pastor Sabrina asked me “Where is

After Desmond received Christ, I could see many

Jesus now?” I pointed to my heart. That was the

changes in his actions and behaviour. He was

first time in my life I experienced such a true and

washing dishes and picking up his own clothes! He

tangible love; I knew it could only come from God.

also apologised to his father. The two of them were constantly at loggerheads, because they are both

MUM SPEAKS Iris Lam senior service co-ordinator

stubborn people. I knew my son had a huge ego and would never be the first to let go of his pride. But he actually apologised to his dad for being rude to him. I was amazed. About two months later,

When the altar call was given,

I myself received Christ.

I had a feeling that Desmond should go up. So I told him to.

I can see that Desmond has really found his direction

He was weeping all the time

and focus in life. I can really see the changes in his

he was there.

life. He is no longer a big spender. He is now careful with his money, and gives sacrificially for his faith

24

At the Guest Reception, we

promise. Yet, recently, he bought

met Pastor Edwin. He asked me, “Are you ready?”

a watch for his brother. Despite

I told him that I needed to wait because my husband

being in a job transition, he spent

was not yet a Christian. Actually, I hesitated to

his bonus on a watch for his


Desmond’s take on… Care & Connect I received a lot of Care & Connect from my uncle Leslie, auntie Mary and their children, even though I did not realise it at that time. I threw a lot of rejection in my uncle’s face when he tried to share Christ with me. (In fact, after I received Christ, I had to apologise to many people, especially Christian friends whom I had rejected very strongly.) brother. It brought tears to my eyes because I know it cost him dearly. It gave me great joy to see him

In order to Care & Connect, we must understand

love his brother this way.

the true value of salvation in a person’s life. My salvation did not come easy; there was a lot

BROTHER SPEAKS Martin Kho, payroll executive

of sacrifice by my loved ones – even my uncle’s youngest son, who is my closest cousin. He was only 10 years old at that time, and already actively caring

I am thankful to my brother

and connecting with me.

Desmond for sharing Christ with me. My brother played a

Each one in their family often took the chance to

big part in my salvation. If not

tell me, “We are praying for you, we are praying for

for him, I would have missed

your work”. Now that I look back, I value all these

out on this greatest blessing

small little efforts. I realise that these are actually

in life. He shared with me his experience with God, and wanted the same for me.

big efforts, because there are obstacles, and you have to overcome the obstacles in order to do these things.

At that time, our grandmother was diagnosed

I believe Trinity’s Care and Connect culture will go

with a tumour and needed to go through an

a long way in helping Christians understand the

operation. Undergoing surgery at her age was

value of salvation. There was once I fasted and

very risky. My uncle Leslie, my mum and Desmond

prayed for a friend, and at the last minute, he told

were all believing for a miracle. I told my mum, “If

me that he was not coming for the event simply

tomorrow the doctor says there is no need for an operation, I will give my life to Jesus!”

because he “just didn’t feel comfortable with the idea”. I literally cried

The next day, just as I arrived at the hospital, the doctor walked out to where our family was, and said, “There is no need for an operation because we cannot find the tumour anymore.” In other words, the miracle happened! I was dumbfounded and amazed at the power of God. I kept my word to my mum; that weekend, I accompanied her to

when I heard that, because I wanted so much for him to come. I realise that to be successful at Caring and Connecting, I have to put all the rejection I receive into a box, and place it at the foot of the cross.

To be successful at Caring and Connecting, I have to put all the rejection I receive into a box, and place it at the foot of the cross.

25


to her for help because of her strong character. But now she has this glow, and people are just attracted to her, and come to her for advice and help. I can see changes in Desmond too. In the past, whenever I approached him for advice, he would scold me first – and then he would advise me. But now, his attitude and approach is different. He has become much more patient. He cares more about the family. For example, he will remind us to visit Grandma despite our busy schedules. the Welcome to the Trinity Family course and right there in the class, I got saved! There is a promise in the Bible that when one is saved, the whole family will be saved. This has really happened in our family. My mother’s salvation was because of the love of my uncle

But now, we love to sit around and fellowship. We talk about our walk with God, our experiences with God, our encounters with Him.

Leslie and his family, and the transformation in my brother’s life. It happened at Trinity’s Christmas

Our family life has also changed. In the past, we didn’t

presentation, The Inn. My uncle’s wife, Auntie Mary,

really sit down and talk. Everybody goes to their own

‘popped the question’ and my mum made her way

room, does their own thing. We didn’t have much

down to the altar to receive Christ. My uncle was so

in common. But now, we love to sit around and

happy to see my mother saved – after 10 years of

fellowship. We talk about our walk with God,

prayer! After that, my girlfriend Tammy got saved as

our experiences with God, our encounters with

well. So that makes four of us!

Him. There is so much to talk about, and we feel encouraged by each other’s sharing!

My mum is a happier person now. We can see

26

this inner glow in her. Others have also noticed a

As for myself, I have experienced God’s blessings

change in her. She really cares for people – family

upon my life. God has given me a lot of favour and

members, colleagues. She has a heart that just

increase in my career. I am new in the workforce,

wants to help. In the past, people hesitated to come

but in just one and a half years, God has blessed


Desmond’s take on… Spiritual growth I appreciate Trinity encouraging us to have Time Alone with God, a time where I can hear God for myself. I believe this is very important as we are in the last days. If and when persecution comes, we will not be able to survive spiritually unless we are able to feed on the Word of God ourselves. I have received a lot from my carecell. I often call my me with a few increments. Then there’s my carecell.

leaders to ask them about issues I struggle with or do

The support I have received from my carecell –

not understand. They always make time for me and

especially my carecell leader Davis – is tremendous.

believe in me. Being in carecell has taught me to be

I am now a spiritual parent in my carecell. God has

open, to be human. In the past, I thought I needed to

built me up, and now I want to nurture other

put up a strong and positive image in front of others,

people. I am responsible for three spiritual babies

but now, I know it takes more guts and courage to be

and I want to help them grow.

vulnerable and to show that I am weak.

MUM SPEAKS

I am still learning to

My greatest joy is to see my sons growing in the Lord and living out their purpose in life. I pray for them, but I don’t have to worry about them, because I know they are being taken care of. They are in God’s hands! I am not a vocal person, but because I am so blessed by God, I just want to do more for Him. Because of the relentless belief my carecell leader Pansy has in

serve. Like everyone else, I struggle to serve in a joyful manner, especially on days when I am

If no one volunteers, there would be no church – then I would not be where I am today.

tired. But I think to myself, if no one volunteers, there would be no church – then I would not be where I am today.

me, I am now an associate leader in the cell. His career in the fitness industry What God has done in my life and family is powerful. Our family life is so very different now. We used to come home and keep to ourselves. There wasn’t

I now view my career as a fitness trainer through new eyes. I see myself changing people’s lives and helping them believe in themselves. I also want to help

much communication; there wasn’t much to talk

clients see that beauty is more than looking good on

about. Now we can talk for hours! We love to talk

the outside. There are clients whose lives are turned

and share about what God has done for us, what

around after they lose weight and gain a new figure.

God is speaking to us, what is happening in church and in our carecells. We are much closer now. We encourage each other. We share our thoughts and our feelings with each other. I guess you could say, we are now truly a family!

I see myself changing people’s lives and helping them believe in themselves.

Some do not know how to handle their new-found looks, and they literally go wild in their lifestyle. I try to prepare them and help them handle their new lease of life.

27


FACING THE

No-Baby Blues

After a decade of infertility treatments, multiple pregnancy losses, three failed adoptions and an ectopic pregnancy, Sandra Glahn understands the no-baby blues faced by childless couples.

“I think I just need to relax,” I told my ob/gyn after

getting pregnant” – I left his office and stayed away

my annual examination. “We’re putting in long

for another 18 months. “If God wants us to have

hours with our youth group, I work full-time, and my

kids,” we told ourselves, “He’ll make it happen.”

husband just finished seminary.” I had believed the myth that the cure for infertility is relaxing.

When we returned to the doctor, we began a journey which would take us through three years of no

“How long have you been trying?” he asked.

conceptions followed by eight early pregnancy losses and then three failed adoptions in our quest for a child.

“About 18 months.” He rolled closer and spoke gently, “No. Perhaps it’s time to ‘stop relaxing.’ We can try a

God’s grace and some information drove us forward.

few simple procedures; the pace is up to you.”

First, we learned that infertility is usually a symptom that something is physically wrong. Perhaps there’s

28

I did not know then that I had already met the

a thyroid problem or an infection. In 95 percent of

textbook definition of infertility: the inability

cases, doctors find a diagnosable medical problem.

to conceive or carry to term after one year of

Second, we learned that for those entering medical

unprotected intercourse. (Some patients say it’s also

treatment, about 65 percent go on to give birth;

the chance to determine mood by a thermometer,

for those avoiding treatment, the number drops

hear every home remedy imaginable, and endure

drastically. Medicine and faith do not have to be

bankruptcy in injectable form.)

mutually exclusive.

Since I cringed at the idea of joining the one in

So we started the process of Love Life by Calendar

six Americans of childbearing age with fertility

Rule (which brought about as much joy as mopping

problems – people I considered “obsessed with

floors). A few times we had to “get together,” then


rush to the doctor’s office to learn whether our

loss of a dream; my heart’s desire is to have my

bodily fluids were “hostile” to each other. We turned

husband’s child and raise it together.”

into pincushions, stuck with daily injections either to help me conceive or keep a pregnancy going.

I turned to the husband and addressed him. “And you?”

And we fought with our insurer, who lumped our heartbreak in the same category with tummy tucks.

He looked at her, then back at me. After hesitating a moment, he spoke to her gently, and stroked her

The emotional toll astonished us. “The depression

arm, “Don’t take this wrong, honey, but…” Then he

and anxiety experienced by infertile women are

looked at me. “It’s the loss of my wife – she is not

equivalent to that in women suffering from a

the same woman I married. Infertility is really

terminal illness,” says Alice Domar, Ph.D., director

taking a toll on us.”

of the Behavioral Medicine Program for Infertility at New England Deaconess Hospital in Boston. Why?

“You’re normal,” I assured them. After enduring a

We’re not talking about a new living room set here.

decade of infertility treatment that included multiple

We’re talking about a child – a child who might

pregnancy losses, three failed adoptions, and an

make daisy chains, throw her arms around us, even

ectopic pregnancy, my husband and I had talked to

throw up on us. It’s not that we were “stuck on

numerous couples. And I recognised their stress,

genetics,” as some accused.

which – though different in each couple’s case – was still a normal response to an abnormal experience.

The idea of conceiving a child as the product of two people’s love is a precious dream, and a deep

When empty arms are a heavy burden

longing. Thus, what a comfort it often is for couples

I always hesitate to tell our “sad story” because

to discover Proverbs 30:16, which tells us that a

I don’t like to engage in what I call the Suffering

“barren womb” is among four things on earth that

Olympics – going for the gold in competing over who’s hurt the most. Many people

are never satisfied. The intense desire to have children is part of the way God structured the world. The drive, the longing, that “unsatisfied” feeling – these are part of the design.

The intense desire to have children is part of the way God structured the world.

Why does it hurt so much?

have endured much worse. Yet during that decade (which ended – thank God! – in the miracle of a successful adoption) the Lord taught us these and a few other things that helped us:

A couple sat to eat lunch with me after I had spoken at an infertility symposium. As

Infertility involves a normal grief process. The

we began to talk, I asked the wife, “When you grieve

loss is intangible, but it is real. First there’s denial.

over your infertility, what is your greatest loss?”

One woman insisted, “I’m not infertile; I’m just having trouble getting pregnant!” Other responses

She didn’t have to think about her answer. “It’s the

include crying, bargaining, depression, anger,

29


Children are among God’s many blessings, but they are not the only blessing.

isolation, and resolution. Look at Hannah

friends and support groups.

(1 Samuel 1); she exhibited almost all of these. Remember: children are a gift, not the gift. When Unfortunately, infertility is a grief cycle within a

people quote verses about children being blessings

grief cycle: the monthly cycle of hope and despair

from God, it’s easy to feel you’re being punished.

interrupts the greater grief process, often leaving

Of the thousands of infertility patients we have

couples wondering if they will ever stop hurting.

talked with, I’ve met only one person who told me she’s never wondered whether God was punishing

Spouses grieve differently. Because infertility

her (She was an atheist.) Children are among God’s

occurs during the childbearing years, it’s often the

many blessings, but they are not the only blessing.

first major loss husbands and wives experience as a couple. It can be a shock to discover they grieve

Read up and speak up. As believers, our bodies

differently. Many researchers have concluded that

are temples of the Holy Spirit. So we must manage

gender-based differences significantly complicate

them well. Christian ethics here require thought

the crisis. One sociologist observed that, in

and investigation. Will the clinic show respect for

general, “Wives saw their husbands as callous and

your convictions? (Most will.) If you do high-tech

unaffected by infertility while husbands saw their

treatments, will you limit the number of potential

wives as ‘overreacting’ and unable to put things

embryos to those you are willing to carry to term?

in perspective. While wives felt their husbands

Take responsibility for your treatment.

were unwilling to talk about infertility, some husbands wondered what there was to talk

Let God strengthen you. This is most important.

about.” In another study, half of the infertile women

Keep asking yourself, “Do I believe God is good?”

said their infertility was the hardest thing they

and “Will I trust Him?” Resist the temptation to cry

had ever experienced; only fifteen percent of their

out, “My stupid body!” Know that God made you

husbands said the same thing.

fearfully and wonderfully in love, mysterious as His reasons may be. When Job hurt, he fell on his face

Yet it’s not always she who feels more pain; in some

and worshipped. Worship your Creator in your

marriages, he does. And infertility is not a “woman’s

pain. He cherishes you and bears your hurt. You’re

problem.” Its causes are about evenly split between

not alone.

the genders. Reprinted with permission. This article first appeared

30

One solution to the emotional disparity is for both

in HomeLife. Sandra Glahn, Th.M., is adjunct professor,

partners or the one feeling more emotional pain to

Christian Education and Pastoral Ministries, at Dallas

connect with a support group or find an Internet

Theological Seminary (DTS). Together with Dr William

buddy. Some psychologists estimate that even

Cutrer, she has co-authored other books which explore

happily married couples should expect only about

the spiritual, marital, emotional, medical, and ethic

25 percent of their support to come from their

issues surrounding infertility. More articles on this topic

spouses. The rest must come from family, church,

can be found on www.aspire2.com


Baby Blues:

The Second Time Around By Sandra Glahn

For couples trying in vain to have a second or third child, the no-baby blues are no less painful. i f l In I fact, f couples l with i h secondary d infertility face unique challenges.

unexpected grief: “You notice you’re the only mother who is not pregnant, carrying an infant, or holding a toddler’s hand,” she says says. “Your child asks why she’s the only one in her class with no brothers or sisters. You listen to everyone in your play group discuss how far apart they want to space

When Charla and Bob Boyl tried to have a second

their children, and then you watch them conceive

child, they were shocked to discover they had a

according to plan. Meanwhile, you continue with

fertility problem. The Boyls have plenty of company;

temperature charts, medications, and doctor visits.

at least one in twelve couples of childbearing

You wonder if your child will be emotionally scarred

age experience secondary infertility. They have

by your deep desire to have another. You struggle

one child, maybe more, then find that after a year or

to answer friends and relatives who comment, ‘Time

more of trying, they have been unable to conceive

for another, isn’t it?’ Or worse, those you’ve told

or carry another pregnancy to term.

you’re infertile say, ‘At least you have one child; you should feel grateful.’”

Fort Worth fertility specialist, Kathleen Doody, M.D. says, “Secondary infertility appears to be under-

Many parents worry their children will be lonely,

treated. Research reveals that while half of all

lacking family connections. They may become

couples diagnosed with primary infertility pursue

overly protective or unusually ambitious for their

treatment, only one fifth of couples with secondary

single child. They may also worry that their only

infertility seek medical help.”

child will die, or bear the sole burden of caring for them in their old age.

Psychologists confirm that both primary and secondary infertility evoke feelings of guilt, denial,

Add to this the expense. Few employers’ health

anger, depression, and frustration. But differences

plans cover infertility. Companies often label

exist, too. Secondarily infertile couples are at an

such treatments “elective,” placing them in the

in-between place. The fertile population generally

same category as cosmetic surgery. Yet more

perceives them as having no problem because they

than 90 percent of fertility problems stem from a

have a child. And when they are with primary

diagnosable medical cause.

infertility patients, they often feel too ashamed to ask for support for fear childless couples will resent them.

“Couples confronting secondary infertility need empathy and validation of their pain,” says therapist

A mom finds that an activity as common as picking up

Judy Calica. “They need the freedom to grieve their

her daughter from kindergarten brings unexpected

losses and they need support in resolving their crisis.”

31


By Sandra Glahn

Myths about Infertility When it comes to infertility, a lot of myths get passed around. Maybe you’ve heard – and believed – some of them.

MYTH: INFERTILITY IS RARE.

FACT IInfertility is quite common. Approximately one iin six i couples of childbearing age experience fertility problems.

MYTH: INFERTILITY IS NOT ANY MORE COMMON THAN IT USED TO BE; IT’S JUST THAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT IT MORE. FACT The T number of couples diagnosed with fertility

bl problems is on the rise. Delayed childbearing and sexually transmitted disease are partially responsible. Environmental factors may also play a role.

MYTH: ALL THE PEOPLE IN THE BIBLE WHO WERE

MYTH: INFERTILE COUPLES JUST NEED TO RELAX AND THEY’LL GET PREGNANT.

FACT Infertility is not caused by the ffailure to relax. Ninety-five b percent of the time it is due to a diagnosable medical cause. About sixty percent of all couples who seek treatment will eventually have a biological child. The percentage is much lower for couples who do not pursue medical treatment.

INFERTILE WERE WOMEN. W have to be careful to avoid viewing the FACT We Bi B ibl ble as ble as an exhaustive textbook on infertility. While Bible the Scriptures describe a number of couples who had difficulty conceiving, the stories are not about the process of infertility per se. And women are not the only infertile people. The levirate marriage laws (Deuteronomy 25:5, 6) suggest male fertility problems. In addition, Ruth was married for ten years to her first husband without children. After he died, she went on to marry Boaz and give birth to Obed, King David’s grandfather. This would suggest that her initial inability to conceive was due to male factor infertility.

32

“It seems there are as many causes of infertility as there are people,” says Dan Underwood, who has a low sperm count. “Some of our infertile friends have antibody problems, some don’t ovulate, some have tubal damage. In about a third of couples, both husband and wife have fertility problems. A lot of people think it’s a ‘women’s issue.’


MYTH: INFERTILITY IS A WOMAN’S PROBLEM. FACT Infertility I is shared about equally

b between the genders. About 30 percent of infertility problems are due to female factors, 30 are due to male factors, and 35 percent are a combination of both. The other five percent remains unexplained. Fertility problems are just as common in men as in women. The hardest seems to be when it’s unexplained. That happens about five to ten percent of the time. It’s tough to go through treatment month after MYTH: INFERTILE COUPLES CAN END THEIR HEARTACHE SIMPLY BY ADOPTING A CHILD.

month when all the tests indicate there’s nothing wrong.

FACT Adoption A is the solution for only one of the many

llosses in i infertility – the loss of the ability to parent the next generation. Most experts encourage couples who pursue

MYTH: REAL CHRISTIANS ARE AGAINST ANY

infertility treatment to exhaust medical options before

ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNOLOGIES.

pursuing adoption, as the two experiences require working

G people, should they choose FACT Godly

through separate sets of losses.

tto use assisted reproductive technologies, must do so in a way that honours the

Some couples deeply grieve the loss of a jointly created child,

dignity of life, even at the one-celled stage.

the pregnancy and breastfeeding experiences, and a continuing family line. For them, adoption will never fill these voids. However, once they reach the “resolution” stage of

Do you know a couple

their infertility, other options look more appealing. Only then

struggling with fertility problems?

can adoption become a wonderful solution for the longing

Say a prayer for them as they

and the loss. This is why so many infertile couples find it aggravating when their friends encourage with, “You can

face the daily heartbreak that

always adopt.”

accompanies such a loss.

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When I first started out in the ministry, I believed that more than 50 percent of all problems were in part due to unresolved anger and unforgiveness. But after 10 years in ministry, I revised my estimate to 75 percent. Now after 20 years of ministry, I have concluded that 90 percent of all health, marital, family and financial problems are rooted in unresolved anger and unforgiveness! This is not a scientific study; it is simply my own assessment, based on my observations of human relationships. How does this relate to our families?

Because families are made of people, they are inevitably organic, even chaotic. Tempers can ďŹ&#x201A;are, relationships can fray, and things can get out of alignment. Rev Jeffrey Wong shares how to bring Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s alignment into our families and our relationships.

34


We all know that maintaining healthy relationships

of witnesses.” This has to do with murder rather than

with our family and loved ones is important. But the

the killing of enemies in times of war.

reality is, relationships can get out of alignment. The Scribes and Pharisees interpreted the Law to Anger and an unforgiving spirit can knock our

mean that as long as you do not commit physical

relationship with God and with others out of

murder, you have obeyed the commandment. Jesus

alignment. Unresolved anger in relationships

redefines this commandment by saying, “Anyone

can defile us, prevent us from receiving God’s

who is angry with his brother will be subject to

forgiveness, give Satan an advantage, prevent us

judgment.” Jesus made anger equivalent to murder.

from bearing fruit spiritually, open us to curses and torment, and block God’s answers to our prayers

Now does Jesus really mean that all forms of anger

such that we are not in any position to receive God’s

against others are acts of murder? We all get angry,

blessings and the new things He has for us.

don’t we? Are we therefore all murderers? Jesus Himself was angry when He saw injustice (Matthew

Aligning our relationships

21:12-13; Mark 3:5) and the apostle Paul tells us in

If you want to align your relationships in a healthy

Ephesians 4:26, “in your anger, do not sin.”

manner, Jesus gave us three pieces of advice from Matthew 5:21-26 to heed:

If we refer to Matthew 5:22 (NKJV), we get a clearer picture of what Jesus meant. It says, “But I say to you

1. Jesus redefined a Command: Anger = murder

that whoever is angry with his brother without a

“You have heard that it was said to the people long

cause…” So if you are angry with someone without

ago, `Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be

reason, or if you mull and brood over something

subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who

that has enraged you and harbour it in your heart

is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.

such that you secretly seek revenge or look for a

Again, anyone who says to his brother, `Raca,’ is

chance to get back at the person, you will be subject

answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who

to judgment.

says, `You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” (Matthew 5:21-22)

I once heard this story. A husband asked his wife, “Honey, when I get mad with you, you never fight

The teaching about murder has been around for the

back. How do you control your anger? Tell me your

longest time, dating back to two passages in the

secret!”

Old Testament. The sixth commandment in Exodus 20:13 says, “You shall not murder” while Numbers

His wife replied, “I just clean the toilet.”

35:30 tells us that, “Anyone who kills a person is to be put to death as a murderer only on the testimony

Puzzled, the husband asked, “How does that help?”

35


The wife answered calmly, “Well, I use your

had something against them, all they needed to do

toothbrush.”

was to make a sacrifice, and that would put them in right standing with God. If they failed to measure up

Husbands, if you are not nice to your wives, think

to what they knew was God’s standard, they would

about this the next time you use your toothbrush!

simply offer a sacrifice and get on with their lives. No change required!

Jesus then goes on to describe the expressions of anger that are sinful. The word ‘Raca’ means

But Jesus corrected that error. They needed to go

‘empty-headed’, signifying a senseless, worthless,

and make things right, and then return and give God

and brainless person. It is used to express contempt

true and acceptable worship. Have you ever been

or disdain or to dismiss someone as useless and

through a mechanised car wash? Once in a while, my

hence not worth having anything to do with. To call

wife and I will take our car for a wash. We just roll up

someone a ‘fool’ is an abusive

the windows and sit in the car

attack on a person’s character.

while it goes through the car

It connotes that the person is corrupt and evil, and that there is no good in that person at all. When we run people down and belittle others like that, whether in their presence or

If they failed to measure up to what they knew was God’s standard, they would simply offer a sacrifice and get on with their lives.

wash. We can see all the soap suds and water all over the car, but nothing inside ever gets washed. Only the outside gets clean. You can go through a car wash over and over

behind their backs, it is an act

again, but it does nothing to

of murdering the person’s

clear up the mess inside your

character and tearing down the individual’s

car. The inside will keep getting dirtier until you

personhood. Jesus tells us that anyone who does

decide to do something about it.

this is in danger of the fire of hell. Many Christians come to church every week; it is like 2. Jesus gave a Correction: Be reconciled before offering your gift

going for a spiritual car wash. But Jesus requires a change on the inside. It does not make much sense

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar

for us to offer our prayers and worship, to partake in

and there remember that your brother has something

the Lord’s Supper, and to give our gifts and offerings

against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar.

to God if we have been dishonest or abusive, or if

First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come

we have strife and enmity with a fellow believer.

and offer your gift.” (Matthew 5:23-24)

An external clean-up is not sufficient. Religious activity cannot be a cover-up for, or replace,

The Jews had concluded wrongly that if someone

36

corrective action. You must first make things


right with your brother or sister. In fact, Jesus gives

imprisons you emotionally. This can also cause you to

greater importance to getting our relationships

start cutting them off or putting them down.

right. This is the one time it is alright to keep God waiting! That’s how important it is to Jesus.

It does not matter who is in the wrong. You take the initiative and do whatever is needed to settle

In case some of you think that you can put your

the matter quickly. If you need to make a call, send

intended offering back into your pocket, Jesus

an SMS, write a note or buy a gift, do it – and do it

actually says, “Leave your gift there in front of the

quickly before things gets complicated. This means

altar.” So God is not releasing you from offering up

that you will not always have your own way. The

your gift! Rather, he says, go settle the issue first,

more you insist on your rights and your way, the

and then come back to worship Him.

more problems and heartache this will cause.

3. Jesus offered wise Counsel: Settle the matter

God Himself took the initiative toward reconciliation

quickly

with us. The Bible says that even while we were still

“Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is

sinners, Christ died for us. We also must be like

taking you to court. Do it while you are still with him

Him and take the first step toward reconciliation

on the way, or he may hand you over to the judge,

where there is enmity and hostility, regardless of

and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and

who is in the wrong. Align your relationships and

you may be thrown into prison. I tell you the truth, you

relate to others the way God wants us to relate.

will not get out until you have paid the last penny.” (Matthew 5:25-26)

Do you want this year to be a year of new beginnings for you and your family? How you relate with others

Jesus was speaking about someone who was about

will determine how God will respond to you. It will

to be taken to court by an adversary. His advice was

determine whether you and your household will

to settle the matter quickly before the case is heard

receive the blessings God wants to bring this year.

in court, in order to avoid the risk of being thrown in

Are you ready to make the first move?

prison. Rev Jeffrey Wong serves on the Leadership Team If you think that this may have nothing to do with

of Trinity Christian Centre and is Trinity’s

you, you are mistaken. There is an emotional prison

Missions Director.

that can be just as painful and agonising as the

Were you blessed by this article? Tell us about it! SMS <Trinity>space<your comments> to 77177 or email we_are_trinitarians @trinity.org.sg

physical one. The longer you wait to be reconciled, the more complicated the situation will become, and you will find it increasingly hard to be reconciled. This causes great pain and deep hurt, which

77177

This sermon is part of the New Year, New You series and can be heard online at www.trinity.net/sermons.htm

37


SHAPING

u

By mum May Tan, homemaker Once, my son was inflicted with rashes that refused

started attending DiscoveryLand two years ago, and

to go away. A lady working in the nearby provision

always look forward to going there on Sundays. I wish

shop suggested that perhaps that my son had come

to thank the teachers for helping my children to walk

into contact with an unclean spirit. She advised me

closer to God, to live up to godly principles and to

to perform some form of ritual before nightfall to

help them become better Christians each day.

chase away the unclean spirit. When my son heard that, he told me very firmly: ‘MAKE SURE YOU DON’T DO THAT, YOU ARE A CHRISTIAN’.

WHAT DO YOU DO AT HOME TO SHAPE AND NURTURE YOUR CHILDREN?

I was amazed that he immediately understood the

As a family, we usually set aside some time daily

spiritual implications of such a ritual, and how it

to read the Bible and pray for the needs of loved

relates to our relationship with God and our faith

ones and friends. As for worship, the kids would

as Christians. I was pleased by the stand he took in

gather together to sing the songs they have

Christ Jesus.

learnt in DiscoveryLand; it’s like having a mini concert or rock band among themselves! After

38

This particular incident left a deep impression upon

each DiscoveryLand service, they will share

me and caused me to be very grateful to the team

with us what they have learnt, and we will give

of teachers in DiscoveryLand for imparting biblical

examples to help them see how they can apply

truths to my children and others alike. My children

it in their daily lives.


Shaping young lives is a shared endeavour and partnership between parents and Trinity’s Children’s Ministry. In this family special, we take a look at young Trinitarians who, because of this partnership, are demonstrating strength of character and conviction.

As told to us by father Jason Yeong, team manager My wife had a bad fall and, as a result, had a constant pain in her back. I decided to pray for her one night before bedtime so we gather by the bedside and both our girls were with us. I decided to ask our girls to start the prayer and I would conclude it, thinking that they may not have the knowledge to be able to pray. To our surprise, Raena spoke out "Dear Lord Jesus..." and went on to pray a simple but powerful prayer. As a father, I must say I was moved beyond words to see such boldness and conviction coming from a 5-year-old! Indeed it was her child-like faith that began God's healing process. My wife is now well again and the pain in her back is gone... Praise be to God! I believe that from DiscoveryLand, Raena has learnt to pray and believe in God with such audacious fervour. To the teachers, I want to say, thank you for building up the next generation of prayer warriors! Raena has learnt to pray and it has been such a blessing to us. Thank you for giving so much of your love and care to our 2 girls. WHAT DO YOU DO AT HOME TO SHAPE AND NURTURE YOUR CHILDREN? We try to inculcate prayer in the lives of our children. We give them an opportunity to give thanks for meals, so as to create a habit or culture of thanking God. We try to have bedtime prayer times as much as we can, though we don’t succeed all the time. During these times, we pray for cell members or their children who are not well. Through all these, our children learn that God hears their prayer.

39


By mum Lai Siew Min, director of a language centre For my son, church starts

Because he is responsible and sensible, I had

at 3pm every Saturday.

the peace of mind to let him go for an overseas

That’s when he arrives in

exchange programme for two months. During that

DiscoveryLand to help

time, he told me that he and his friends had their

out in the preparations for

own ‘devotion time’, and as a result, one of his friends

the service, from manning

came to know Christ. It made me very happy to

the sound system to

know that I can trust him to be responsible, to resist

playing the keyboard.

temptation and to be a blessing to other people.

There were older ones who mentored him. He first started out just rolling the

WHAT DO YOU DO AT HOME TO SHAPE AND

wires, and soon discovered that he has an interest

NURTURE YOUR CHILDREN?

in these things.

When he was in lower primary, I was not working. I sent him to school everyday; it was our mother

I am pleased as it helps him to be responsible. It has

and son bonding time. I prayed for him and asked

built up his confidence and whatever he learns in

him to pray for me. I was touched and encouraged

church, he also uses in school. Now he is in charge

by his prayers. So allow your child to pray for you;

of the sound system at the morning assembly.

they will learn that they too can pray!

By mum Chua Peck Hoon, teacher My son played games that had an

WHAT DO YOU DO AT HOME TO SHAPE AND

occultic influence. He later learned

NURTURE YOUR CHILDREN?

in DiscoveryLand that these games

I try to emphasise practical application. Once, we

were not healthy. We talked about

read this book You Are Special by Max Lucado.

it, and he did get rid of some of his

The toys in the book like to ‘label’ one another

cards, but not all. Then one day,

with dots and stars. The popular ones get stars

to my surprise, he suddenly opened his drawer and

and the unpopular ones get dots. But there is

cleared out all the cards. Now he tells me that he can

one character whose labels just slide off and

sleep better and does not have bad dreams anymore.

don’t stick, because she gets her sense of worth from the Toy Maker. When we read this story, I

He has also experienced the presence of God in

applied it to the situation in his class, where his

DiscoveryLand. He came back and told me that when

classmates were ostracising a particular child.

everyone worshipped, he felt like crying. I told him

Then he understood that

that what he experienced is the presence of God. He

we should not ostracise

said that the presence of God gave him a desire not

anyone because everyone

to do wrong things. As a parent, I am very glad that

is created by God.

he encountered God at such a young age.

40


By mum Soh Liang Liang, media director I can see that Joy and Faith have an awareness of what pleases God and what doesn’t. One day, we were at a shopping centre and everyone was joining this queue to watch a free movie screening. We joined in the queue as well. But when we reached the front of the queue, they told me that it was “not a good cartoon” and that they did not want to watch it. I was surprised as I did not know about the background of the cartoon, but I am glad that being in DiscoveryLand has taught them to be savvy about the mass media; they have the awareness that some media content is good, and some is not. It happens not just in DiscoveryLand, but it starts when they are in Nursery. All my three children have been in Nursery since day one. They come back singing praise songs and they learn to know and recognise Bible characters like Samson and David. Through both the songs and stories, they understand that God can do miracles, like multiplying the loaves and the fish. I am pleased that they ‘pick up’ all these things, which I feel makes a big difference in their lives.

WHAT DO YOU DO AT HOME TO SHAPE AND NURTURE YOUR CHILDREN? I try them to help them see beyond and pray beyond their own needs. I take what is in the newspapers and use it both as a teaching point and as a prayer item. Once there was this girl who drowned in the swimming pool because she had run ahead of her parents and not waited for them to bring her there. I used it as a lesson on safety. There was also a photo in the newspaper of the distraught parents, so together we prayed for the bereaved parents. Whenever we see a funeral wake, I encourage them to pray and bless the grieving family. They have come to realise that we can bless even those whom we do not know. This helps widen the scope of their prayer and broaden their worldview.

41


d (DL) a long ing Discover yLan I grew up attend hool and own as Sunday Sc kn ly er rm Fo . ck time ba iscover yLand” was renamed “D it , ch ur Ch n’s re Child rhaps the most imar y school. Pe pr in as w I n he w ent that took I had was an incid vivid recollection was on maternity gular DL teacher place when our re pensive-looking in bought this ex leave. Her standell-wishes. us to write our w d te an w d an r he card for ure of a little ay, we drew a pict When she went aw stead! The poor dle of the card in id m e th in y ke mon like a largeless. To us, DL was ch ee sp as w r he teac “babies”, and our e were the unruly w – y er rs nu e al sc ers. rtunate baby-sitt teachers, the unfo was spending impression of DL My other fleeting ng ‘graduated’ kend there. Havi ee w y er ev s ur two ho ed to the d grown accustom from Nurser y, I ha By Tan Rou’en

g of hands, n songs, clappin singing of Christia to bible stories; ing and listening collecting of offer own accustomed ligations I had gr these were all ob much to g DL never meant in nd te at y, pl sim to. Put anded of by a expectation dem an y el er m as w me; it tian parents. child born to Chris I start questioning iversity years did Only during my un why I did what I I was doing, and who I was, what estioned God’s ch moment, I qu did. During one su This line of g my childhood. rin du e lif y m in existence dden friend d when a backsli ue in nt co ng ni questio was meant to the Christian life if d ou al d re de won g for God, only to ocess of searchin pr l ua et rp pe a be was then that I d of our years. It en e th at m Hi nd fi n I was a kid?” re were You whe asked God: “Whe estion; or e an irrational qu It might seem lik 42

ing God, as my ght’ to be challeng perhaps it’s not ‘ri quisitiveness rtly steeped in in motivation was pa e star t of a t this was just th and skepticism. Bu d’s presence. affirmation of Go an r fo ch ar se er deep d

that He was an I needed to know with me, and has always been e my childhood that I didn’t wast futility. pursuing Him in

childhood minded me of a Soon after, God re box of Colleen her bought me a incident: My mot five or six. The hen I was about colour pencils w as what I colours, which w t gh ei d ne ai nt pencils co

fficient as I er, it proved insu ev w ho e, tim In . received ur in the faces ed beige to colo ck la I at th ed er discov e to no end. . This frustrated m ew dr I le op pe e of th to accomplish necessary tools e th ng vi ha t No ction as it e great dissatisfa my tasks gave m r precision and n to my need fo was in oppositio colour pencils eless, my box of accuracy. Noneth d possesion. remained my prize ht me a box my mother boug n, ve se as w I n Whe came with 24 ur pencils, which lo co en lle Co 12 of ch colour was s for guessing whi ize pr No s. ur lo co und, I carried the urotic as it may so my favourite! Ne cket ever ywhere ur pencil in my po beige-brown colo stump while was reduced to a I went, till beige en, one day, ally untouched. Th rtu vi d ne ai m re brown n. I lost beige-brow


red a certain y mind. I remembe m to e m ca t gh A thou r way to an at she was on he th g in ar sh r he ac DL te raining. But she t when it star ted en tm in po ap nt urge then prayed in an umbrella. She t gh ou br t no d ha t and when she go to stop the rain, her hear t for God ! ing, just like that ply stopped rain off the bus, it sim g for bombastic God is not lookin She shared that interested in but He is simply s er ay pr r ou in words prayer, d listens to ever y Go id sa e Sh . ts ar our he call mulling red. That day, I re te ut y pl sim er ev how mething that d actually hear so ul co He w ho er ov ed t really captivat ed. I guess, wha was not ar ticulat that day – that er lesson learnt me was the bigg

God can ‘hear’ un t. knows the hear

uttered prayers

because He

pencil, the ige-brown color be y m st lo I n he So w my seven-yearon resurfaced to ss le is th of y or mem doing the iately thought of ed m im I d. in m d ol friend. I’m not e to God as if to a same thing. I spok as going about ter it was, but I w sure how long af ers as if on a g and closing draw the house, openin ced upon one drawer I chan in n he w t, un r-h scavenge only difference colour pencil. The n ow br eig be a lone n then was one d new! My reactio an br as w it at th was ayer, but merely er an answered pr ov t no – n io at el of use. It is only now, king new Beige to that I had a span d link. It was as if , that I see the Go when I look back new, and placed ged the old for a God had exchan I would find it. it where He knew

ere there. You think, God, You w Now as I muse, I kid. You were life when I was a were there in my urch in high not hold You or ch there when I did tedly been that I have undoub regard. Now I know aching, nurturing, s in DL. All the te ar ye y m by ed shap al part of ies, were an integr or st d an its sk s, song

t The lessons learn in the recesses d re o st n e e b e hav e uncovered and of my heart, to b right times. They ir e th at d e ss e n har al

s. my formative year

my person ng stones towards pi ep st en be ve ha d. quest to know Go

t remains as DL has evolved bu Today, I find that ntinue to be vant as ever. I co creative and rele posters I see events, flyers and y an m e th by d inspire ing happening ing the next excit ut to , ch ur ch nd arou e ability of the I also mar vel at th d. an yL er ov sc Di in and produce le to conceptualise DL team to be ab ck-breaking ts at seemingly ne such creative even em gimmicky, tic, these may se speed. To the skep ren. But I sily-excitable child a ploy to entice ea d cartoons pe of colours an co os id le ka e th think tless lives pared to the coun m co l ra he rip pe are of DL cannot be The importance . DL in ed ld ou m shown in my life. undermined – as hers, past and anks to all DL teac This is a note of th kid. Thank who was once a DL ne eo m so m fro present, rting God’s ank you for impa Th e. m g in ct pa im you for portunity’ was my ‘window of op n he w e m to in s truth ten-unsung your continual, of r fo u yo k an Th . open g lives. And, ng countless youn efforts in sharpeni

teachers are not L D , rd co re e th r fo ? How can they be big-baby-sitters. ne my destiny. They helped defi ity and ted from univers Rou’en has gradua ity@Paya Lebar. ader in West, Trin is an associate le

43


There has been such a total turnaround in Jimmy Ong’s life; he is like a new man living a new life. What God has done for him spurs him to reach out to many others.

Trinitarian magazine comes face to face with Trinitarians who embody Trinity’s Vision, Values and Culture of Care & Connect.

Trinitarian magazine meets this Care & Connect champion

44

who has invited more than 100 friends, and successfully brought 40 of them to church.

WHAT SPURS YOU TO INVITE SO MANY PEOPLE?

• My marriage failed and the whole family

Because of what I have gone

• children, my son Shaun. Shaun was a high-

through, I feel that life is very

spirited boy and a caring son, well-liked

fell apart. I had custody of one of my two

fragile. Before I knew Christ, I was a lost sheep.

and loved by all who knew him. He meant the

I had a ‘heck-care’ attitude at home, at work

world to me.

and towards life. I took things for granted and

• My son Shaun was

couldn’t be bothered with anything, let alone

diagnosed with

my family and parents!

last stage brain cancer. I did everything

Then different things began to happen and I

• I knew to save my one

experienced all kinds of challenges. These came

and only son. I turned

at the same time, one after another.

to every single thing and man to seek help.

• I had a punctured lung and almost lost my life. My doctor said, “Your life is a bonus from

Yet after seven months and seven days, I lost

now on.”

him to brain cancer. He was 10 years old then.

• My business went bust and I was saddled with

I felt like I had lost everything, and that it was

overwhelming debts. I was made a bankrupt.

all over for me. Indeed I was a wretched man,


like a bird with broken wings. The turning point in

• God sent me a wonderful and God-loving

my life came when I recalled Shaun’s last days in

woman, Tricia, whom I married in January this

the hospital and the ordeal we were going through.

year. She is an incredible blessing to me. She keeps

I was utterly helpless and deeply pained by the

me grounded, makes up for my weaknesses and

sufferings he was going through, and asked him if

complements me perfectly!

he was afraid to die.

• After searching for a church for more than a year, I stepped into Trinity and found a spiritual

Shaun said, ‘No, Dad.

family where I can belong.

When I asked “Why?”, he replied, ‘If I die, Dad, I will be seeing Jesus.’ Because of my son’s hunger for Christ even to his last

I felt like I had lost everything, and that it was all over for me.

breath, the strength and peace that he demonstrated and all the significant signs that unfolded before me, I realised that there is indeed a God and He has a purpose for all that has happened in my life.

Indeed, I have never felt so at home and at ease until I stepped into Trinity. It is a feeling of being

I decided to surrender my life to God, and God did

welcomed home into the family after a long and

a great restoration work in my life. He has mercifully

tiring journey out in the desert! My spiritual walk

blessed and restored my life. Christ is able to redeem

with God has flourished and grown so rapidly

all my mistakes and make my life new. Today:

since I have been here.

• I am blessed with great health. By His grace,

I was introduced to carecell, and boy! I am in awe of

I kept my promise to my late son to quit smoking,

my carecell, Farrer Harvesters from South, Trinity@

a habit I have had for more than 20 years. Today,

Adam. Kindness, warmth, care, love, peace, joy,

I can even run 7-10 km every week.

laughter, Bible knowledge… you name it, they

• My career has been restored. Today I hold a

have it! They were with me every single step

management position in the marine, oil and gas

from day one till today, helping me to grow in

industry.

my relationship with God, helping me in all my

• My broken relationship with my parents has been restored, and we have great fellowship

needs, prepping me for my water baptism and my wedding. Indeed they are my extended family!

every time we meet.

45


incredible. God is so good. Indeed, He has made everything new for me! As I look back at my life, I realise that God has been pursuing me all these years. He was with me all this while. Though it has taken me a long time to realise how much my Father loved me, yet it is never too late to give my life to Him – to serve Him and do His work of bringing the lost to know of Him. Today, I am no longer like What God has done for me me, no man can do; only God! He has literally restored everything that I had lost – and more! But that is not all. I had been a bankrupt

46

What I can do in return for His great love is to simply share His love and all that He has done in my life.

the lost sheep; I know where I am heading. I live my life to do God’s work, and trust God to handle the things that I am not able to.

for years, with all the

What I can do in return for

inconveniences that came

His great love is to simply

along with it. I had tried to get myself discharged,

share His love and all that He has done in my life. It

but was unsuccessful. When I got baptised, as

is very easy to speak and profess our love for God

I went down into the waters of baptism, I cried

by going to church, attending carecells, serving and

out to the Lord, “God, You have been faithful to

reading the Bible. But all these amount to nothing

make everything new for me, but there is just

if I do not make my life count for Him. The life I have

one thing that remains: I surrender this issue of

and live is not about me, but about what I can do to

bankruptcy to You.”

for Jesus.

Right after the weekend of my baptism, I received

Reaching out to people and sharing about Jesus

a letter. It was a notice from the court that I had

is my intentional goal and purpose. Bringing and

been discharged as a bankrupt on 16 November

connecting a friend is a very simple and small task

– the Friday before my baptism weekend. It was

compared to what God has done for me. Talking


to people,

belief and what they do or turn to in times

following up

of difficulties) and from there, I share my

and encouraging

personal testimony.

them… it is all

YOUR COLLEAGUES PETER AND PRISCILLIA HAVE RECEIVED CHRIST. TELL US MORE ABOUT THAT.

very simple. I leave all my own problems and difficulties in life for God to handle. It’s an act of faith – trusting God that as we do His work, He will do what we cannot do in our lives!

I have been working together with Priscillia for the past six to seven years. Many people in the company

HOW MANY PEOPLE DID YOU INVITE, AND HOW DID YOU DO IT?

have seen the changes in me since I came to know

For the water baptism service where

baptism service. She was touched by the many

God. I knew that she goes to church on and off, and took the opportunity to invite her to the water

powerful life stories were shared, I invited 45 friends

testimonies that were shared and answered the altar

– and 21 actually came. For the ‘I Need a Miracle!’

call to accept Christ.

Power Weekend last August, I invited 120 people, and 17 came.

For Peter, I saw a sense of emptiness in him and reached out to him. Peter saw how God had touched

I have a regular contact list of friends which I have

and changed my life. He accepted my invitation to

built up over time. I make it a point to keep in touch

come to church and gave his life to Jesus that

or follow up with them, through calls, SMS or emails.

weekend. God has done much for him as well. Our

For these events, I called each of these people

colleagues have commented that they can see the

personally to invite them.

difference in him. God has also blessed him with a relationship.

The key challenge I face is how to approach people without them feeling uncomfortable; inviting them

I am very happy to see their lives changed! And

to an exciting and fun gathering. These

God is still doing His work among my friends and

people know me and I usually begin

colleagues. In fact, just this Easter, my colleague Kris

with sharing on what God has done

Lee and her three daughters also received Christ.

for me. Sometimes I ask questions

So the gift goes on!

(whether they have a spiritual

47


Peter Tan assistant sales manager and team leader What made you accept Jimmy’s

What made you decide to make

to God for my complete healing.

invitation?

Trinity your home church?

Besides improvement in my

Jimmy and I have been colleagues

Jimmy’s carecell members!

health, there is also a great sense

since 1995. Jimmy is very

Everyone is very friendly and

of peace and calm that I have

different from the early days

encouraging, and I enjoy their

never had. My job is very hectic

before he became a Christian.

company. They have been very

and fast-paced, but I no longer

There is a peace in his

caring and are always inviting me

feel so stressed, like I did in the

demeanour. I know he has gone

to join them.

past. It feels so much easier

through much in life - bankruptcy,

to achieve my sales target

divorce, illness, challenges in the

What made you decide to join

nowadays – and I know this

family, bereavement – and yet

a carecell? How has the carecell

is all because God has helped

there is a peace that he has. He

been a blessing to you?

me, bringing people to call and

has been talking to me about his

I have only attended the formal

contact me. I used to be worried

God and I was curious. He said

carecell meeting once so far.

and stressed up about meeting

something like ‘I can talk to my

I have not been able to join

the targets, but now I’m learning

God’, and I was curious to find

regularly because of my work

to enjoy the work I do. Also, it

out more.

schedule. But the carecell

does not feel so routine. In fact,

members are very warm, and I

I have just been promoted to a

Share with us your impression

usually join them for lunch after

team leader. I am very thankful to

when you came to Trinity. What

service on Sunday, going to

God for answering my prayers –

led you to accept Jesus?

different places to makan (eat).

in terms of health and work!

feels very different from other

Since then, how has your life

Praying every night is also

religions I know. It is a very new

changed?

a new experience; I have a

thing for me, especially the part

I had a health problem for more

new peace and can rest much

about talking to God and Him

than 10 years. The amazing

better. I find a greater sense of

speaking to us.

thing is, since I came to church

meaning in my life now. Also,

and gave my life to Jesus, the

there is a sense of belonging to

How long have you been

internal bleeding stopped! It

the carecell.

attending Trinity?

came back again recently, but it is

More than 6 months now.

not that serious and I am praying

I first came in October 2007. Prior to that, I had never stepped into church before, not even at the gates. The company I keep is from a very different world; my friends are the very rowdy type. My first impression was that Christianity

48


Priscillia Yang project administrator What made you accept Jimmy’s invitation?

I listened to the stories of the

I used to go to church for special

people and how God changed

the people here in Trinity very

events at the invitation of friends

their lives for the better. I felt

warm and caring. They make me

but I’ve never attended church

a great need for comfort and

feel really welcome, and there is

regularly. I have never given my

strength and decided to accept

genuine concern and love.

life to Jesus, though a friend did

Jesus as my personal Lord. You

pray for me many years ago.

could say it was also a case of

What made you decide to join

being at the right place at the

a carecell? How has the carecell

right time.

been a blessing to you?

Jimmy is my colleague and we

I have attended carecell 5-6 times.

are good friends. I see a drastic transformation in him… He is

How long have you been

Having friends to rally round and

like a different man altogether!

attending Trinity?

support me helps me feel that I

The other reason why I accepted

For more than 6 months now,

am not alone.

Jimmy’s invitation was because I

since November 2007. Since then, how has your life

was going through a rough patch and was feeling quite down.

What made you decide to make

changed?

I didn’t feel like being alone so

Trinity your home church?

I don’t feel alone anymore,

I decided to come to church.

I was feeling very helpless and

since I now have a spiritual

alone, and the only one who

family to share my burdens

Share with us your impression

could help me was Jesus. At the

and difficulties with. I also know

when you came to trinity. What

same time, knowing Jimmy and

that God is there to help me

led you to accept Jesus?

his friends gave me a sense of

whatever my difficulties may be.

The water baptism testimonies

belonging. Among the different

There is a greater sense of peace

were very touching. I cried as

churches that I have visited, I find

in my life now!

49


! h c r u h c o t t h g u o r b I o Look w h er friend h d n a r e t is My s ana & Steven Saybar)

¥ My frie,nTrdinity@Adam)

Juli aya Le rinity@P (South, T

(West Evelyn Ho

My CCA friends }

Chia Shuang Ai (IGNY TE, Trinity @Adam)

My friends

Vanessa Ho (East, Trinity@ Paya

Lebar)

My colleague annitdy@friAdenamd)

Roger Goh (North

, Tri

and client My friend, co(Soullethag, ue ) Trinity@Adam Chadrick Yeo

My c l assm

helperams ) c i t s e m d do ity@A

Julie A nn

My 2 h (South, Trin n To

Eilee

ate ¥

(7 yea rs old, Discov eryLan d)

} s in s u o c and) y M coveryL old, Dis

e Wong

Kathlen

My colleague of 7 years Tan Sung Sung

(South, Trinity

& her friend

@Paya Lebar)

(9 years

Myan mar My tenants fr(Com ) hinese District Faith ຮᏫࣞ

50


My cousin ’ s ivefrieMnd inistries)

Charlotte Yong

(Creat

d My inter(Wnesett, Trfrinieitny@Adam)

mar S Sendhil Ku

My colleaggue and her mum

≠ d n e i r F a g Brin d n e i r F e h t Connect

Irene Yeo (North, Trinity@ Paya Lebar)

My former classmate ¢

Brenda Lim (East, Trinity@ Paya Lebar)

My c ousoldin, D¢iscoveryLand)

My fr iend

ua (4 years

Jolinda Ch

Joyce Ng (Sou th, Tr

inity@Paya Leba

r)

My sc hoolmaty@esPa¢ya Lebar)

, Trinit Chloe Lim (IGNY TE

My friends

My friend and her husband

Khaw Su W een (North

, Trinity@A dam)

-in-law My mother ese District)

Michell

e

in Lim (Ch

Sharon Kuok (North, Trinity@Adam)

® My friends and their friends Cally Koh (West, Trinity@Adam)

My classmate¥

Joy Khor (12 ye

ars old, Disc overyLand)

51


5 y ea r s My frien dest,oTrfin2ity@Paya Lebar)

My fr iend

Angeline Won g (South, Trinity @Adam)

m (W Adeline Li

My c o llea g ues

Natalie Yap (East, Trinit y@Paya Le bar)

My fraiest,nTdri¢ dam) nity@A

Penn (E Tay Hui

My company’ s vendor ¢ Doris Lim (West, Trinity@

es and PE datemac) her My classm(IGatNY TE, Trinity@A Ruth Lew

Adam))

≠ d n e i r F a g Brin d n e i r F e h t Connect

My fri end

Javan Sng (4 years old, Dis coveryLand)

} My sisinteesresDistrict)

ਧ߸ਲ

My sc hoolmateveryLand)

52

old, Disco Shawn Yan (6 years

My friends

Jonathan Ang (West,

Trinity@Paya Le bar)

(Ch

My friend ’sTrfrinityien@Addam)

(East, Florence Yong


My gir lfriend ¥

Jeremy Ang (North , Trinit

y@Adam)

My ex-colleague¢

Margaret Chia (South, Trin ity@

Adam)

My neigh,bDoisucorveryLand)

Myan mar My friend frt,om bar) Trinity@Paya Le

(5 years old Ansel Tan

as Eleanor Chin (E

My freieanrsdold¢, DiscoveryLand)

My former colleagues

Eleanor Chin (E ast, Tr

Benjamin Lim

n (8 y nne Joh Rayna A

My 3 sc hool m ates

Ken Seah (IGNY TE, Trinity@Ada m)

inity@Paya Leba r)

My friend scoveryLand)

My colleagt, Truineity@Adam)

mar (Wes S Sendhil Ku

My friend }

(11 years old, Di

My friend s p a ’ rents Josian Ta y (West

, Trinity@ Adam)

Pauline Chua

(East, Tri nity@Pa ya Leba r)

My friend of 10 years

Adeline Wong & Ann Wa Ad ng (East, Trinity@Paya Leb ar)

My stu dinenitty@Adam)

Jeffrey Sim

(West, Tr

53


! d e t c Conne

y il m a f r i e h t t c e n n o c y e h t w o h e r a Trinitarians sh and friends just by making caring and connecting . fe li y a d y r e v e ir e h t f o a part

Through a gathering We met Phuong, a Vietnamese lady, at our cell member’s house blessing. Actually we cell folks were tempted to keep to ourselves as it takes extra effort to get to know new people and there were many sophisticated pre-believers there, some of whom were high flyers in the financial world. They also seemed to know each other very well, so it was not easy to talk to them. Nevertheless, a few of us stepped out of our comfort zone and made the effort to talk to Phuong.

N dl ll rejoiced! j i d! Sh i d us ffor Needless to say, we all She jjoined carecell and has started on New Beginnings,

• We then invited her to our section’s Chinese New Year celebration. She came and enjoyed herself

the nurturing material for new Christians and newcomers.

very much, and she got to know many of our cell folks.

God has taught us that when we step out in

• Next we invited her to witness two of

obedience, He moves mightily! We also learnt the

our cell members getting baptised.

power of teamwork in reaching out to our friends,

She came to church but said she was

as Phuong came as a result of the efforts by two

not ready to receive Jesus yet.

carecells - Tessarina and 342 Champions - to keep in

• We kept praying for her and believing

touch with her

God to touch her. Praise God for the marvelous way He is working! We At Easter she came but did not respond to the altar

are truly encouraged!

call. However, when asked later if she wanted to

54

receive Jesus, she said that she already had as she

Rosita Fernandez, adjunct lecturer

prayed along with Pastor Dominic when he said the

324 Champions

sinner’s prayer.

West, Trinity@Adam


Through a sermon series I invited my colleague to attend the Easter drama. She could not make it because of her shift work that day. However, I was prompted by the Holy Spirit to invite her to the church preaching series, Sit, Stand, Walk: Your Posture Matters! It was a series on spiritual authority. She came to the church for the first time. After that, I continued to follow up with her because she is very open and receptive. She told me that she used to attend a Christian school. I have asked her whether she wanted to receive Jesus, but she said she wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t ready. She attended the church a few times, and one morning, I received an SMS from her, saying that she was now ready to receive Jesus as Lord! I quickly responded to her and led her in the sinnerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s prayer. When I asked her why she came to this decision, she told me that her spirit and heart kept stirring within her about receiving Jesus as Lord, and she did not feel at peace. When she attended service, she felt very peaceful, but whenever she missed the service, she felt very uneasy. I thank God for stirring that desire in her heart to receive the Lord. Truly, the Lord loves her and led her to make that decision. I know that all heaven is rejoicing over her salvation! Kevin Liew, engineer North, Trinity@Paya Lebar

55


Through a dinner Mui Hung and I are colleagues, albeit in different

shocked me for a while, for I’ve never personally

departments in our workplace. She is part of the

led anyone to Christ in my nine years of being a

sales team working as a coordinator, while I am in

Christian! I immediately took my ‘Guilty!’ invitation

the Regional Marketing Department. Though we

card out and invited her for the Easter drama. She

are not very close, I managed to strike up

accepted the invitation and said that she

some conversations with her at work.

would make it for the play.

It all started when we wanted

Days went by after that. As the

to catch the same movie and

weekend drew near, I realised

I suggested that we should

that I should have led Mui

watch it together after work

Hung to say the sinner’s

one day. But by the time we

prayer with me there and

reached the movie theater,

then! Why should I wait till

we were already late for the

‘Guilty!’ to get her saved? Why

show. Not wanting to make

couldn’t she receive salvation

it a wasted trip, we decided

now? What if something

to have dinner together before

happened to her before the drama

heading home. While having dinner,

comes around? The more I thought

our conversation topic began with ‘types

about it, the more I had the urge to lead

of movies we liked’. Somehow or other, I started to

Mui Hung to Christ. When I was on the bus, I texted

bring Christianity into the conversation. Mui Hung

her to call me on my mobile phone, and she did. I

was quite open about it and we started to talk about

led her through the sinner’s prayer on the phone

church and different beliefs, etc.

that day. I was so glad that I managed to make an impact in my workplace; it is something that I’ve

As we talked, I had this gut feeling in me that Mui

prayed about ever since I started working in Warner

Hung has an aunt who is a Christian. Taking a step

Music.

of faith, I asked her if one of her aunts is a Christian. Mui Hung’s reaction was instant. She looked

Mui Hung did come for ‘Guilty!’ and has started to

shocked and admitted that her aunt is a Christian,

attend service together with me since then. She

but she has never really told anyone about it. There

also managed to join some of my friends for some

was a lingering silence between us for a while. I

activities outside of church a couple of times. I’m

tried to lighten the mood by saying “ooohh, God is

glad that all the Trinitarians are welcoming and

in our midst liao.. haha...” but I could see that she

friendly to her. This is also a personal breakthrough

was thinking about something.

for me; God gave me the strength and courage to spread the Gospel at work, despite difficulties

Mui Hung has never come across to me as

such as people’s reactions and perceptions about

someone who would want to know about Christ.

Christianity. Indeed God saves, and all things are

Frankly I didn’t think that she would be open to

possible with Christ!

the Gospel! Despite that, I really wanted to ask her

56

the ‘million-dollar question’. Mustering up enough

Pauline Chua, promotions executive

courage, I asked her if she would like to accept Jesus

UBK 20

into her life. She immediately said ‘Yes’. That

East, Trinity@Paya Lebar


≠ d n e i r Bring a F Connect the Fr iend

I am in constant touch

Five friends of mine came for Easter Sunday Service.

w with one of my business

It was their second time in Trinity, the first being the

a associates, a back-

Christmas event. I was very glad that they were

sslidden Christian. I send

ushered to the Guest Reception, and there, they

h him Bible verses and

managed to fill in their details. One of them was

e encouraging words

so interested in the Life Skills Seminar on Stress

tthrough email and

Management that she signed up on the spot!

S SMS. We sometimes

d n a S M S , s il a m e Through magazine! Trinita rian

S had a great time at the seminar. I then She e emailed her the link to the Trinity website, and the l link to the Life Skills Seminars. I am sure that when s navigates around Trinity’s website, she will be she a able to explore and be informed of any upcoming c courses, and also perhaps download a sermon!

meet up for lunch and tea to catch h up with one another. At times, I wo would down nlo oad download

P Praise God for Life Skills

the online version of testimonies featured ed d iin n

S Seminars that allow

the e Trinitarian Trin i itarian magazine and d send sen nd them t em th m to o

T Trinitarians to Care &

him, to encourage him when he is under trying

Connect with our friends

circumstances.

and loved ones!

I have also been inviting him for the special events.

Jacquelyn Wong, managerr

He finally attended “The Father’s Love” together

n Royal Kinsmen@Coronation

with his family. I again invited him for the “Guilty!”

South, Trinity@Adam

presentation but he could not make it as he was in China during that period. But after the event, I caught up with him over the phone and he shared that his daughter went for the “Guilty!” presentation. Praise God! Kelvin Wong, consultant

s r a in m e S ls il k S fe i Through L

Hillington Green carecell West, Trinity@Adam

57


A

I

The

IO

N

TR

ARIAN TRAD T I IT N

Sermon Series

What is a sermon series? A sermon series explores a particular topic or issue over the span of a few weeks. Why invite someone to a sermon series?

1

such as work, relationships, family, finances, or

You may have seen

topics such as abundance or leadership. It is

the flyers. You may have even sat through one

relevant to life in a contemporary world.

2

Each sermon series is an engaging take on issues that affects us all, and gives believers

without realising it.

and pre-believers alike a biblical perspective on these issues.

We are talking about a unique feature of Trinityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s

Each sermon series touches on real life issues,

3

It is an opportunity for a friend or loved one to gain new perspectives of God, and fresh

celebration service â&#x20AC;&#x201C;

insights into pertinent themes and issues.

the sermon series. 4

As a sermon series stretches over a few weeks, it is an opportunity to explore a topic at length, in a way that cannot be done in a single sermon.

58


5

It is usually presented by a different speaker each

• There have yet been others who persisted and

week, providing multi-faceted insights into a

persevered in inviting their friends and loved

single topic.

ones again and again, using the sermon series along with other platforms, such as life skills

6

As each speaker will share from his or her life

seminars and special events.

experience, you can be sure that your family and friends will find it more than applicable.

When’s the next sermon series? There is always an upcoming sermon series. Look

7

People have been saved and impacted through

out for the publicity, which may come in the form of

the sermon series.

a well-designed flyer, or simply as a description in the bulletin, on the panel that says “Bring a friend,

Many Trinitarians have seized the sermon series

connect the friend”. If you are on the mailing list,

as an opportunity to invite their friends, and

you will also receive an email or web flyer. (If you are

connect them to God and to the Trinity family.

not, just subscribe at the website!)

• Some Trinitarians have been able to invite

So I don’t have to wait for the next “mega-event”

friends who received a timely word from God

to invite my friends to church?

for their particular situation.

That’s right! The next time you hear of a sermon

• Others have just used the catchy title to invite

series, remember that it is an opportunity for you

their friends at random, and opened a way for

to invite someone. For more information, look into

them to have a divine encounter with God.

your bulletin… and invite someone today!

59


Who brought you to church? Jeffrey Wong

A friend whom I knew during my national service days

invited me to Trinity. I bumped into him a few years after army and that’s when he extended an invitation for me to visit Trinity. Out of an inner prompting, I accepted the invitation. When I first stepped into Trinity’s service at World Trade Centre, I was immediately attracted to the tangible presence of God during the time of worship and the ministry of God’s Word; it was so real. My friend introduced me to two others, and these two Trinitarians cared and connected with me. I felt the warmth of their friendship, and they constantly ‘looked out’ for me. They introduced me to others and connected me to Petra Fellowship, which was the name of Trinity’s Young Adults Ministry then.

Danny Leong

Erolyn (who is now my wife) was brought by a friend of

mine to a gathering I organised. I didn’t know her before that. At the gathering, she invited me to church with a simple question, “Why don’t you come to church to find out more?” I came, had a good feeling, and returned regularly after that. She introduced me to the choir, a great group of believers who welcomed this pre-believer into their closely knit group. Linda Ong, Patsy, Lily Lim, Lai Ying, Bernard, Anita and others invited me to all their activities: BBQ, bowling, swimming, and of course, food! What surprised me most was the genuine love expressed by everyone towards each other and me. The choir members were very affectionate! I felt very accepted. I had great fun. They had one goal in mind – to get me saved! Some six months later, I gave my life to Jesus at one of the services.

A friend and I saw a bus advertisement with this question: “Are you hurting?” It was an advertisement by Trinity. My friend was suffering from a slipped disc, and so she decided that we should visit Trinity, even though the ad was referring to emotional hurts.

Beatrice Kang

As a first-time visitor and a pre-believer, I was very wary, but to my surprise I felt safe. The people were warm. Subsequently, I came to Trinity alone. I received the Lord four weeks later but being an exceptionally guarded person, I did not avail myself

to anyone for nurturing. Despite that, two persons really made a connection in my life – Pastor Dowdy, and Lai Ying (then the Pastor overseeing the Worship & Fine Arts Ministry) who opened her heart, home and her family to me. Their informal nurturing changed my perspective of God and what it is like to be in the family of God. That spurred me to just want to serve God. Within a couple of months I was in cell, serving in the Worship & Fine Arts Ministry, and helping out in the church office.

60


Bring a friend, connect that friend… for who knows, you might change the course of your friend’s life forever! Our Leadership Team pastors spill the beans on who brought them to church and set them up for a date with Destiny.

Wilson Teo

My sister invited me to Trinity in 1985 when I stagnated in

my spiritual walk. She had been coming to Trinity for a few months and shared with me her wonderful experience in Trinity. That got me all excited to come and see it for myself. On my first visit, I felt the presence of God in a way which I had not experienced before. That kept me coming back to enjoy the vibrant and intimate worship with God. I started attending classes and cells, which further integrated me into the life of the church. The people in the Trinity were very warm and friendly, and helped me to feel part of this large family. I decided to get water baptised in Trinity and have been a member ever since!

When I was in school, a friend tried to share the

Lam Ee Lin Someone invited one of

gospel with me while we played table soccer together.

my friends to Trinity, and he invited a whole group

Talk about care and connect! This brave soul was

of us! We all decided to come together –

none other than Pastor Dennis Lum Although I didn’t

I guess you could call it the friendship factor,

receive Christ then, I did two years later.

or the herd instinct! For a long time, we stuck together as a group, attending church and growing But he

together. We enjoyed the worship and the sermons.

wasn’t the

Gerald Tan

one who

A brother from

brought

Trinity connected

me to

with our whole

Trinity; it

group, often

was my

stopping to talk to

parents.

us and encourage us. I thank God

Here’s what happened: I got saved in another church,

he did, for he

but when my parents got saved in Trinity, I moved

was the one who

over to join them. I was very introverted, and did

encouraged me

not have a single friend. I was happy just to keep to

towards water

myself and attend service with my family. Later, I did

baptism and finally saw me water baptised.

some reverse ‘care and connect’ by inviting Dennis

I continued to grow in Trinity, and later, I started

over to Trinity. Now, I had a friend!

serving as a Sunday school teacher.

Wanting to serve in any way I could, I volunteered to

I would say the friendship element definitely

be a sound man for the youth ministry. I must have

played a part in helping me settle into church.

been good at it, because they later put me in charge

But once I settled in, it was connecting with God

of it. Perhaps this goes to show that serving helps

that helped me grow further and deeper. Now

a person get connected and settled into church!

that’s the ultimate connection!

61


We are mid-way into the year of new beginnings! Are you still pressing in for that which God has promised you? Get ready for The Blessing, for God wants to pour it out into your life, says Rev Dominic Yeo.

62


When someone is taking his or her leave, we often say ‘man zhou’, which literally means ‘walk slowly’. It is a Chinese tradition that is used to release a blessing. It is a way of wishing the other person a wonderful journey and a safe return. People in

I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you I will make your name great.

you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

times past seemed to understand the richness and impact of such a blessing. Today,

Understanding The Blessing

many contemporary believers want to be

There are a few things we need to understand about

blessed, but fail to understand the significance

our God who is a God of blessing.

and power of The Blessing. The concept of The Blessing did not originate from man but from God, because God is a God of

1

It is God’s will to bless us God wants to bless us. God tells Abraham in Genesis 12:2, “I will bless you.” The word ‘will’

blessing. Genesis 1:28 gives us the first record of

indicates both God’s desire and intent. God loves to

God blessing humanity: “God blessed them and said

surprise us in ways that causes us to be awestruck

to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the

and fascinated by the great and wonderful love of

earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and

a magnanimous God. When God says, “I WILL bless

the birds of the air and over every living creature that

you”, it means that God not only has the desire

moves on the ground.”

to bless us, but He WILL bring it to pass. It is an imperative. God WILL make it happen. God has both

To arrive at a true understanding of The Blessing

the intent AND the ability to bless us!

of God, we must look closely at the Abrahamic Covenant. For when we believe in Jesus, we become sons and daughters of Abraham, and are spiritually grafted into the true vine, Israel. We come to share in all the blessings of God that are for Abraham’s

2

God’s blessing is not based on our righteousness, but on His grace and sovereignty.

descendants. The Bible records the Abrahamic

Many of us think that God will bless us only if we

covenant in Genesis 12:1-3. “The Lord had said to

are righteous. As a result, we go through rigorous

Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your

religious disciplines and exercises, live our lives

father’s household and go to the land I will show

according to a list of do’s and don’ts… trying to

63


make ourselves righteous, so as to earn God’s

entirely on His magnanimous grace and sovereignty.

blessing. But no matter how hard we try, we can

Are you ready for God’s blessing to come into your

never be good enough. So we reason that since

life? Remember, it is based not on your works or

we can’t please God, God won’t bless us. But that

righteousness, but on God’s sovereignty and grace.

is a lie from the pit of hell, because the blessing of God is not based on our righteousness. The Bible tells us clearly that our righteous acts are like filthy rags before God (Isaiah 64:6). In other words, we can never be good enough! But the moment you

3

God’s blessing is not based on who we are, but on our response to God. God wants to bless us. God is able to bless us.

But He looks for our response. He is not looking for a

The beauty of God’s blessing is that it is based entirely on

His magnanimous grace and sovereignty. acknowledged your sin before God and came to

response of religious rites or duties, but a response

know the Lord Jesus Christ, God cleansed you

from our hearts; a response of faith and obedience.

instantaneously. The point is not whether you feel clean or not. The fact is, Jesus – by His blood shed

In order to capture the essence of this, we must

on the Cross – has cleansed you and made you

understand Genesis 12:1. God told Abram to leave

clean. The blessing of God comes to you today

his country, his people and his father’s household

solely because of God’s grace and sovereignty!

and to go to the land that He would show him. Who was Abram? He was actually someone who

64

During Chinese New Year, we give ‘ang pows’ or

worshipped idols. Why did God choose him? We

red packets to our children and loved ones. Did you

don’t know, but the blessing of God is never

withhold red packets from your children this year

based on who we are, our accomplishments or

just because they misbehaved? Of course not! We

our relationships. God doesn’t work this way. God

bless them nonetheless. It’s the same with God.

blesses us not because we lead a carecell or go to

God’s blessing is not based on our righteousness.

prayer meetings. God sovereignly picked Abram and

The beauty of God’s blessing is that it is based

chose to bless him based on his response.


God asked Abram to leave the Ur of the Chaldeans.

impact our nation. I believe that God is about

This was a flourishing sea port with extensive trade.

to touch every Trinitarian so that corporately,

In fact, it was the most magnificent city in the world

Trinity will impact our nation for God’s glory.

at that time, very prosperous and progressive, with

I also believe that God will establish you in your

great commerce. It was also a centre of farming with

business so that you will stand out and impact

very fertile ground, and a manufacturing centre to

the nation, and the church will experience that

boot. They had it all! Who would want to leave a

blessing as well.

place like that? And especially when you don’t even know where you are supposed to go!

2 “I will bless you” – Personal blessing I believe that God is about to bless us with

God also asked Abram to leave his father’s household,

a personal blessing. We are blessed to be a

which included his father’s treasury. His father Terah

blessing, to be a source of blessing. God’s

was very wealthy. The wealth Abram stood to inherit

personal blessing will rest on us. Kings like

could probably feed his family for generations. Yet

Darius, Nebuchadnezzar and the Pharaoh paid

God told him to leave all that security. Why? Human

attention to people like Daniel, Nehemiah and

affection needs to give way to divine grace when

Joseph because they recognised that God

we follow the Lord in faith and obedience.

was with them and they were blessed of God. I believe that God will bless you richly with a

God wanted to bless Abram, but Abram’s response

personal blessing this year. It could be a blessing

was key. He needed to respond in faith. Because

in your relationships, in your finances or in your

Abram responded in faith and obedience, he later

physical health.

became the father of the nation of Israel. 3 “I will make your name great” – Reputational

4

Blessings God wants to give you.

blessing

I believe there are four blessings that God

In the first blessing, the word ‘make’ in the

wants to restore and release to you as part of

phrase ‘make you into a great nation’ means ‘to

the Abrahamic covenant:

establish’. But here, in this blessing, the word ‘make’ in ‘make your name great’ means ‘to

1 “I will make you a great nation” – National

enhance and grow’. God promised to establish

blessing

Abram as a nation, and then to enhance and

This means that God will establish us as a great

grow his name and reputation.

nation. The blessing of God in our lives will

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This connotes growth and promotion. God will enhance and grow your name, which refers to your reputation or fame. God will also

to others. As God

God wants to grow your name into a name of renown, a name that people will relate to greatness and goodness.

make you renowned

blesses you financially, it will be multiplied to others. As God blesses you relationally, your relationships will bless others. Get ready for your multiplied blessing! Your

and bless your

life will be so blessed, and

reputation. God wants to grow your name into a

you will bless many more lives. That is what The

name of renown, a name that people will relate

Blessing is all about.

to greatness and goodness. I am blessed, so are you! 4 “You will be a blessing” – Multiplied blessing

Are you ready to step in to receive the blessing that

Out of your life will flow a multiplication of

God has for you? God knows the exact blessing

blessing wherever you go and with whomever

that you need, and He desires to pour out The

you come into contact. The blessings of God will

Blessing into your life.

overflow in your life such that everyone around you will get blessed!

I am blessed, I am blessed Everyday that I live I am blessed

An example of someone who is blessed is Pastor Tan May Ling. Even in her affliction and battle with cancer, she has so many other cancer patients coming to her, because she blesses

When I wake up in the morning When I lay my head to rest I am blessed, I am blessed!

them. Her doctor even joked that at this rate, he might have to set up an office for her at the hospital. The blessing that she has experienced from God has multiplied to all around her.

Rev Dominic Yeo is the Senior Pastor of Trinity Christian Centre. Were you blessed by this article? Tell us about it!

You can’t be a blessing to others if you have not experienced God’s blessing. God wants to bless you with joy so that it will be multiplied

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SMS <Trinity>space<your comments> to 77177 or email we_are_trinitarians@trinity.org.sg. This sermon can be heard online at www.trinity.net

77177


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My Divine Assignment In April, Trinity celebrated Apostle Naomi Dowdy’s birthday and paid her a tribute in all its services. She shared with the church a glimpse of the next phase of her life. Here we produce an excerpt of her speech.

Dear Trinity, you are an awesome church! Thank you for this birthday surprise. May I take this occasion to share with you God’s plans and assignment for me in the next phase of my life. As the expressions of my extended ministry through Naomi Dowdy Ministries (NDM) are growing and expanding, I believe it is wise for me to be released from positions of legal governance in the Church, and from being an official staff member of Trinity. No matter what God calls me to do, my heart, passion and first priority will always be Trinity Christian Centre. I am still the Resident Apostle of the Church. I am still a member of Trinity. I am still living in Singapore – though I will be travelling in and out of the country, as I usually do. And I am still part of the Preaching Team! You may ask, what does a Resident Apostle do? It means that I serve alongside our Senior Pastor, Pastor Dominic, and the Board in Trinity as they continue to bring

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the church to the next level. I primarily serve as

that you bring to my heart, as I continue to watch

a coach, mentor and advisor. So I am still around –

you grow and soar to new heights in the Lord.

just in a different capacity. Pastor Dom and the

Years ago, God gave me a promise in Psalms 2:8:

team are doing a great job. I am proud of them.

“Ask of Me, and I will make the nations your

God is stretching them and Trinity is growing.

inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.”

Praise the Lord!

Trinity will always be part of my inheritance, but God is continually enlarging my inheritance –

Naomi Dowdy Ministries will continue to be involved

and I am seeing the fulfillment of that promise!

in areas of consultation, mentoring, training, and the building up of pastors, leaders and churches in

By God’s grace,

other nations, as well as in Singapore.

I will endeavour to accomplish every

I want to thank each of you for your love. Your cards,

assignment that God

emails and words of encouragement are special and

gives to me. For this,

mean a lot to me. Words can’t describe all the joy

I covet your prayers!


Trinity @Paya Lebar Look out for these areas that will be ready in n JJune une 2 2008! 0

New Guest Lounge Hostel

Audio Visual Rooms 70


e g n u o L h t u o Y

Roof Garden

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Corporate Donors – Together we make it happen! ALBERT LOH, DEUTSCHE BANK For the past 7 years, Deutsche Bank has partnered with Care Community Services Society in caring for the needy through their Deutsche Bank Asia Foundation. It all started through one k, Albert Loh. man from Deutsche Bank, Albert Loh was the man who spearheaded the Beyond Us project under Deutsche Bank Asia Foundation since 2001. His first project saw 46 Deutsche Bank staff raising $4,800 for CCSS’ elderly lunch fund. His compassion touched many and in the

Beyond Us and raised money to kick start CCSS’ back-to-school fund. Over the last few years, he has done much to raise funds for CCSS’ school pocket money fund. Because of him, CCSS is able to bless children with pocket money for their meals, school stationery and assessment books.

following year, more Deutsche Bank staff came forward and joined him in the fund raising effort. Once he ran a half marathon to commemorate the 5th anniversary of

What motivates Albert Loh to do what he does? “I saw families having to share a packet of instant noodles for dinner, kids going to school without pocket money, kids without textbooks or a school uniform, single parents leaving their kids without supervision at home. I knew I could do something, and not only me, but I could rope in my company to help too. We created a school pocket money fund and an elderly lunch fund. We got book vouchers ffor kids and brought them on outings. I’ve been so blessed to give, and all my staff, regardless of their position, have learnt that they can do so too.”

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Whatever your position in the company, you can encourage your company towards love and good deeds – to be a corporate donor of Care Community Services Society (CCSS). Here are two ordinary people in the marketplace who have done just that.

ALAN, EMPLOYEE OF AN MNC An employee of a multi-national corporation

revamp! These engineers did what they knew best;

pioneered a different path by leading a team of

they fixed stuff! They changed the furniture, added

employees from his company to give physical

a heater in the bathroom, gave the bedroom a new

support to CCSS beneficiaries through sheer sweat

look, painted one of the rooms and made many

and aching muscles. Under our Make Their Day

other meaningful changes. They literally sweated

programme, we introduced a family to this group

it out the whole day to made a lasting and visible

of colleagues, and they readily agreed to “make the

change in the lives of this family. And in so doing,

day” of this family. They made the day of this single-

they changed the quality of life for this family, in the

parent family by giving their 30-year-old flat a total

very place that mattered the most – their home.

Don’t make a difference – make YOUR difference! Have you ever wondered why you do what you do? You may be a banker, engineer, politician, manager, caregiver, receptionist, personal assistant, or homemaker. Do you ask why you have been placed in that job? I do. I asked such questions. And now I know the answers: ✔ I believe that God has the best plans for me and nothing ever happens to me without God’s approval. ✔ Wherever I am, there is an opportunity for me to be a blessing to others. ✔ We are called not just to preach the word of God but to show the love of Christ through our everyday life; through the works of our hands, the way we interact and connect with people. Who knows if perhaps you were made _____ (insert your job) for just such a time as this? - Esther 4:14b

Here’s how you can make YOUR difference! ✔ Be an advocate of CCSS wherever you are. Tell others about the charity, and what it does. ✔ Suggest, speak up and encourage your employer or company to do something for the needy through CCSS ✔ Rally your department or colleagues to get together and make a difference to a needy family or child. ✔ Don’t know where to start? For ideas and resources, just drop us an email or give us a call!

To find out how you can partner with us to serve the community either as a volunteer or a sponsor, please contact our Community Partnership Team: John Chua at 6304 7619 (JohnChua@carecom.org.sg), or Ms Stella Aw Yong at 6304 7617 (StellaAwYong@carecom.org.sg) or Miss Daryl Lee at 6304 7618 (DarylLee@carecom.org.sg).

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Friends, Foes and Lovers

Would you become friends with The Boss? How about sex before marriage? These provocative questions were posed at the forum and talk-show which were the focus of the Combined Districts Young Adults Gathering on 4 April 2008.

By Kevin Kwang, Tan Rou’en and Gillian Ang

ramifications it might have. While

towards non-disclosure.

the reasons varied in content, the panelists had no qualms in

At the end of the evening, Pastor

befriending their superiors, even

Dominic Yeo took to the stage

if it might cause envy or gossip

to share some of his thoughts

with their colleagues.

on the complexity of office relationships between opposite

But it was, perhaps, the second

genders. He shared candidly of his

question which created a bit

own response to the blog entry

more of a stir, when the question

scenario, calling it “professional

Working Adults

of making friends with the

will”, where we, as Christians,

The working adults had a forum

opposite gender was broached.

have to “set the motivation of

discussion that revolved essentially

A blog entry depicting a scenario

both heart and mind right” and

around friendship in the workplace.

where a man and a woman,

exercise discipline and

It was facilitated by Pastor Larry

who spent most of their time

practicality in averting

Lee, and joining him were 6 young

working together on a project,

the allure of attraction.

working adults, who were the

began to wonder if they had

panelists for the evening.

feelings for each other. The catch: one of them was married. The

76

Would you become friends with

audience was then invited to

The Boss? This question kicked

discuss among themselves their

off a thought-provoking session

personal reaction to the scenario,

as Pastor Larry asked if the panel

particularly if it happened to

and audience were for the idea

them. While some chose to be

of befriending their bosses,

upfront to their partners about

and what some of the possible

the feelings, others leaned

Young Adults


Young Adults Campus Students The forum for the campus students,

10, out of which her husband Chih

held ala talk-show style, was on

Yang fulfilled 7. Chih Yang then

the “man-woman relationship”.

cheekily said, “Before marriage,

Helmed by Pastor Janice Chng,

I was 7, but after marriage, I was a

it covered relationship issues

10!” The focus then shifted to

pertinent to campus adults. A few

issues about being in a relationship,

real-life scenarios provided fodder

such as spending the night at your

for audience interaction, as the

partner’s place, or having sex if a

participants put in their votes via

couple really loved each other and

SMS, which were then tallied in

was committed to marriage.

real time. During the interlude, the audience In talking about relationships with

was shown a blog post by a

the opposite gender, it was revealed

certain “Princess Charming” in

that one of the panelists, Victor,

which she lamented her inability

had 47 criteria for a spouse!

to let go of a previous break-up.

Another panelist Grace had only

Everyone had an opportunity to post a comment, with a prize given to the one who dished out the best advice. Pastor Gerald Tan rounded off the forum with a short message, encapsulating the evening’s takeaway in a one-liner: “When you honour God, you will honour your partner.” The little-known 19th Century writer, Randolph Bourne, once said that “friendships are fragile things, and require as much handling as any other fragile and precious thing”. “Handle with care”, then, pretty much sums up the approach needed for life’s friendships and relationships.

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Photos:

78

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Our HUNGRY hosts take up positions and “3, 2, 1….. WELCOME!” Doors open. Youth scramble into the Summit to be greeted by an enormous burger, almost 8 feet in diameter. Kudos to the décor team! After a round of ice-breakers, teams take turns to display their group cheers. Group names of “Popiah”, “BBQ Sting Ray”, “Claypot Rice” fill the air with their fragrant sounds of laughter. Off goes the bell, and the actual race begins. As citizens of the “Land of Hungry”, the mission is to “Get the Hungry People Fed Up” by making the best sandwich in town. Teams run between stations playing games to win the necessary ingredients and tools that they need to make the best sandwich. Tasks range from singing a song with water in their mouths, to eating chee cheong fun in the fastest time possible – without hands. At the final mission, teams return to the Summit to build their ground-breaking sandwiches. Our Hungry judges have a hard time selecting the winners from all the scrumptious food. Since man does not live by bread alone, ministerial staff Gwen Zhou takes some time to share with us about being Hungry for the things of God. What an inspirational way to end the day! After a day of food, fun and fellowship, we all go back… ‘Fed Up’! By Michelle Leong

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Among the latest batch of graduates from Trinity’s Ministry Internship programme, there were not one but two IT engineers! It was an unforgettable experience for both of them, but in different ways.

Trinitarian: What prompted you to join Trinity’s Ministry Internship (MI) programme? Were there obstacles and challenges you had to overcome? Tat Liong: This has been something that was on my heart even before I graduated from university in 2003. Although I felt a calling of God to the marketplace, God’s prompting was that this would be His preparation for where He would lead me in future. So after working for 3 years in a sales job at an IT engineering firm, I left in 2007 to join Trinity as a full-time Ministry Intern. The challenge was facing up to what my relatives and friends would think about what would seem

Ministry Intern

Wan Tat Liong

like a foolish decision to them. Only a few people knew that God had been preparing me for this move for years. The prospect of the huge drop in finances, having to depend on my savings as well as my wife’s salary during that one year, was daunting. Now, having gone through it, I look back in wonder at how God provided and brought us through it all! Trinitarian: How would you describe your year in the MI programme? What were the life lessons you learnt? Tat Liong: My learning stint can be summed up by three words and two reminders from God. The 3 words are faith, communicate and lead. The

82


I was a

Ministr y Intern two reminders from God were, “Don’t worry, I will

faith, communication and leadership – are still areas

vide.” and “Tat, you will excel in it.” provide.”

that I am honing everyday.

Many times, when I was stretched in the areas of time and energy, these two reminders from God of “Don’t worry, I will provide.” and “Tat, you will excel in it” kept the passion in me burning.

I live each day feeling more excited, more purposeful and more fulfilled than before.

Communication was an art that I picked up in the programme. I enjoyed learning to communicate

God has blessed me with another sales job that

better as a leader and as a preacher. I cherished the

I truly love, with lots of potential. I live each day

preaching opportunities during chapel to hone

feeling more excited, more purposeful and more

my skills in preparation to be a better speaker in

fulfilled than before. I feel that there are still many

future. I always found it fascinating and inspiring

areas in my life where God is still working on and one

how our Trinity preachers blend effortlessly the

of this is to be a great leader at home. As a husband

context of the bible with daily applications to bring

to Jeanne and a new father to my son Daniel, I now

out relevant the truths. Now I could learn this!

rely on God every day to lead me, as I lead my family

And I learnt more about leadership than I ever did

and marriage towards where He wants us to be.

before. Plus, I thank God for the opportunities to be involved in several committees that ranged from

Trinitarian: What would you say to others who

small research groups in TCA classes to the Life

are thinking of joining the MI programme?

Conference planning committee that involved the entire church.

Tat Liong: For those who wish to join MI, intentionally pray through your decision before

Trinitarian: Now that you have graduated, how

going for it. Pray and seek godly counsel before

are you different? What has God deposited in your

embarking on it, but once you have settled it in your

life through the MI programme?

heart, DON’T LOOK BACK! Just do it! You will find great fulfillment in this new season ahead of you!

Tat Liong: I am definitely more aware of God’s divine intervention. His quiet voice of assurance still

Wan Tat Liong is now a sales engineer and a sectional

compels me to press on in Him, and the 3 words –

leader of Trinity. He serves in the Chinese Ministry.

83


Trinitarian: What prompted you to take this step of faith and were there obstacles and challenges you had to overcome? Melanie: I heard the call of God upon my life around 11 years ago when I was still a varsity student. But I figured that I was still too young; I wanted to see the world, experience in life, get married and watch my children grow up before I answered Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s call! But in 2005 while I was working in the IT industry, God reminded me of His call again. At thatt time, I was at the crossroads of deciding whether or not to take up dec a job opening. When I mooted the

Ministry Intern

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;

The entire experience and Kingdom gains have been so valuable, they cannot be exchanged or compared to all the tangible or monetary rewards I would have earned.

idea with my parents, of taking

Melanie Tan

a year off to join this Ministry Internship programme, they were not in favour of it. I decided I decided to go back to my prayer

closet, to commit the whole situation closet to the Lord and wait on God and His timing. I took the new job and God blessed me immensely, not just financially but in terms of job satisfaction, success and favour. At the peak of my career towards the end of 2006, I felt restless in my spirit and was once again at the crossroads, seeking God for His direction. God used the two years in between to work in my parents and prepare them for this move. I entered into the programme with their blessing.

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Trinitarian: How would you describe your year in

Trinitarian: Now that you have graduated, graduated how are

the MI programme? What were the life lessons you

you different? What has God deposited in your life

learnt?

through the MI programme?

Melanie: I really enjoyed the learning although it

Melanie: I have taken the bold step of faith to move

was tough juggling the workload from TCA College

into God’s destiny for my life by joining Trinity as

modules as well as the demands of the ministry.

a Ministerial Staff, and I believe that it is only the

I had to discipline myself and manage my time

beginning of greater things to come!

wisely. Having to process, reflect and interact with the material that I was studying and being

God has shown me that He will never leave me,

mentored by different pastors was a highlight for

forsake me nor short-change me. When my

me. I thank God for His marvellous grace to which

family saw that I was really enjoying what I was

I totally attribute my good grades. Another highlight

doing, they gave me their blessing to serve God

was the mission trips that I had the opportunity to

full-time in the church and not return to the

go for during the one year. God enlarged my vision

marketplace.

and I saw how the Lord was working not only in Singapore but around the world; I experienced it

There was so much God deposited in my life during

for myself first-hand!

this one year and I am so grateful to God. The entire experience and Kingdom gains have been so

God was pruning me and moulding me at an

valuable, they cannot be exchanged or compared

intense pace. As the intensity was stepped up, I had

to all the tangible or monetary rewards I would

to learn to die to myself daily. One specific incident:

have earned if I had not taken time out to do this

I was asked to be the chairperson in the campus

programme.

camp committee. Knowing that I would be ‘stuck’ in camp on my birthday, everything in me wanted to

Trinitarian: What would you say to others who are

say ‘no’ but eventually, I surrendered and yielded to

thinking of joining the MI programme?

God, by asking God for a special birthday present – for Him to bring a confirmation of His call in my life.

Melanie: I definitely have no regrets joining the

Being in the committee and needing to see to all

programme! It is such a joy for me to encourage

the details, I never expected to receive ministry but

others to take the step of faith like I did so that they

God gave me the best birthday present ever. The

can experience MI for themselves!

camp speaker released a prophetic word saying, “Young lady, don’t ever leave the ministry; there is no more place for you in the marketplace!” This

Melanie Tan is now a ministerial staff of Trinity. She

was the very confirmation that I asked God for.

serves in South, Trinity@Paya Lebar.

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Passionate Heartbeat:

Touching our Nation, Reaching the World The annual Missions Convention is always a time of world-changing faith and excitement in Trinity. 300 delegates from 18 nations came for the Cell Church Conference, while Trinitarians saw their faith promises break the $9 million dollar mark.

March is a very exciting time in the life of Trinity. It is the time when â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;missionsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; is the buzzword in church. This year, missions booths were set up to showcase the different missions programmes in Trinity. Through photos and videos, we caught glimpses of what God was doing through Trinity both in Singapore and around the world. A highlight was our Annual Cell Church Conference from February 27 to March 4.

time of worship, basking in

Here, Trinitarians played host

the presence of God and

to almost 300 visitors from

allowing the Holy Spirit

18 different nations and our

free access into lives as we

delegates had a taste of the Trinitarian Experience.

received the timely Word of

The conference started off with a bang at Missions

God from anointed devotion

Night, with the parade of nations represented by

speakers every morning.

their colourful national flags and costumes. With one heart and voice, we prayed for God to reign

Training sessions were next, where pastors and

over the different nations represented. Bishop Tony

leaders representing more than 60 churches were

Miller then challenged us to join the company of the

impacted not only with tools to bring their churches

Holy Discontented and to rise up with the spirit of a

to the next level, but more importantly, were

reformer like the Apostle Paul.

transformed as they caught the heart of God and received what He wanted to do for their lives and

88

Throughout that week, Trinity@Paya Lebar was a hive

their churches. The evenings were filled with different

of activity. First thing in the morning, delegates were

programmes such as the Impartation Night

greeted with a contagious joy by Traffic Marshalls

where we received the Word of God as well as the

and Celebration Hosts who directed them from

ministry of the Holy Spirit, and Carecell Visitation

the gates right up to The Summit for a sumptuous

Night where delegates rubbed shoulders with

breakfast spread. This was followed by a powerful

Trinitarians in various homes where our carecells met.


What delegates say We received countless kudos from all our international delegates. Here is a sampling of their comments: “The first time I entered the sanctuary, I was overtaken by the atmosphere of love and faith and of God’s presence” Susan Shaulis, USA “In ways that I cannot begin to articulate, this has been so much more than a conference. This has been a life-changing experience!” Lynn Luellen, USA

All through the week, our delegates had a lifetouching-life encounter

“Trinitarians have the family of God atmosphere totally worked out. Thank you for including me in your family.” Liz Bowell, Australia

as they interacted with speakers, trainers, pastors, staff and Trinitarians, young and not so young from all walks of life. In all, they were treated to what we have all come to know and love – the Trinitarian Experience. This was followed by the Missions Convention Weekend at all our various Celebration Services children, youth, language and adult services where Trinitarians and visitors alike were challenged by

“Once again, the Trinity family has risen to the occasion…this is the third time I’m coming to the conference and it gets better each time.” Richard Scott, Bermuda “All the trainers and members were great modellers of the love and servanthood of Christ.” Roderick Allen, USA “The passion and vibrancy of your people is contagious!” Sur Del Rosario, Philippines

the sharing of powerful and anointed speakers like Bishop Tony Miller, Rev Ed Pousson and other guest and in-house speakers. At the end of each celebration service, we all saw and experienced our

“I have been so blessed by the volunteer hosts… really felt welcome!” Leona Lim, Malaysia

faith level breaking through to new heights as the Holy Spirit moved. Our cumulative Missions Faith Promises from the entire Trinity Family that weekend crossed the $9 million mark. Once again, God has blessed us to be a blessing to the nations and we are so thankful for the privilege to carry God’s passionate heartbeat in touching our

“Seeing the church in action, I have seen the possibilities of a true church functioning in an excellent way.” Deborah Combs, USA “I was overwhelmed by the hospitality of the carecell I visited…this made our trip even better.” Barry Thygesen, Australia

nation and reaching the world. “You really walk the talk!” Alodia Maye Hindoy, Philippines 89


POWER TRIP A missions impact trip to Pune, India was power-packed with spiritual itual adventures and life lessons for this team of eight.

Almost immediately after the

“I learnt to pray for others and even

and doing their part whenever

Missions Convention, a Missions

when I didn’t know what to pray,

called to, no questions asked,”

Impact Team left on an 8-day trip

the Holy Spirit enabled me when

observed Andrew Lee, a company

to Pune, India from March 6-13.

I availed myself to do His work,” said

director from West, Trinity@Adam.

The team was led by Pastor Sabrina

Tay Hing Heng, a manager from

Lee and comprised eight men and

South, Trinity@Adam.

Retiree Tony Chye from South, Trinity@Adam, concurred. “We

women from various districts. One highlight of the trip was when

achieved bonding as a team despite

the team visited four schools and

the large age differences. The team

ministered to the children there.

impacted many lives as ‘one.’”

They were so encouraged by the many willing responses from the

One thing is for sure: God

children to the salvation invitation.

has deposited His passionate heartbeat into each and every one

“I was so thankful to be able to

of them, for all have expressed a

share the gospel in a school where

desire to go to the nations on a

200+ children made decisions to

regular basis.

Ri ht ffrom th t t off the th ttraining, i i Right the start

receive Christ on the very first day!”

each of the team members was

enthused teacher Emily Wee from

“I learned to serve the Lord in ways

tasked with a different role.

West, Trinity@Adam.

I thought I would never be able to, and I definitely want to do so again!”

Although they were from varied occupations and backgrounds,

The camaraderie and love within

testified Dorit Grueber from South,

they worked together with great

the team was also very evident.

Trinity@Adam.

synergy and teamwork.

They ministered not only to the people in Pune but also to

Everyone on the team experienced

one another throughout their

personal breakthroughs. There

time together. This bond is

were many ‘firsts’: preaching,

something precious that will

sharing their testimonies,

remain long after the trip

facilitating games, performing

is over.

skits, making props, praying for

90

people, conducting a life skills

“The team spirit and bonding that

seminar, and ministering to young

was apparent from the beginning.

girls rescued from prostitution.

Everyone was pro active in helping


Upcoming Trips

July 10-17

Indonesia

July 11-18

Taiwan

Aug 10-16

Taiwan

Sign up at the Information Counter or

Aug 22-28

India

download the form at www.trinity.net.

Aug 28–Sep 4

Taiwan

Sep 25-Oct 2

Taiwan

Oct 2-8

Taiwan

Oct 14-21

India

Oct 16-22

India

Nov 11-17

Thailand

Nov 13-19

Cambodia

Nov 25-30

Malaysia

Thinking of going on a Missions Impact Trip? Don’t hesitate! Training will be provided.

Registration closes two months before each trip. Dates are tentative and subject to change.


The Making of - An Insider’s Look

r production. aking of Trinity ’s Easte m e th to in nt we at wh og about Two GUILTY! insiders bl

Joan Lim

about me

blog archive

to do. But ite clueless about what I am in stage design!! Qu are birthed , ideas flow. More ideas when I read the script d, stretch er. We toss ideas aroun as the team gets togeth s, and it all the Internet for resource boundaries, searched pires it all. begins to ‘click!’ God ins physically, m every direction – Challenges flood in fro l for the Fatigue is especially rea emotionally, spiritually. iron bars sweat bullets sawing off props and sets team. We together. m, and then put them and large chunks of foa nds to the e to me: Putting our ha Today, a thought cam honored ly tru l mes at a price. I fee plow is not easy and co are pressing alongside many who to befriend and work t. To see the salvation of the los in and pressing on for ng together lks of life and ages comi individuals from all wa d. ess”… I am greatly blesse to do “The Father’s Busin is an asset rk and/or family, time In order to balance wo supportive efully. Praise God for a we have to manage car supernatural ing every ounce of the spouse, and for provid . strength that we need many people see the altar filled with I was deeply moved to s tonight. To ions and re-dedication making first-time decis through n the entire production witness how God has see of Christ letion. To see the Body – from concept to comp bonding t fel d experience a heart unite for one cause, an Almighty s team. To realize that the with the props and set y to touch hands in such a big wa has used my two little ry… Hallelujah! lives and bring Him glo

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Ling author: Joan Lim Wee freelance art director role:

stage designer

date: May 2008 subscribe: RSS comments: 15


about me

blog archive

Daniel Ku recent post

I have a “craving” to get invo lved in Trinity’s Easter production, GUILTY! I have alw ays liked singing and playing music. After a discussion with my wife, I signed on. If I didn’t, I would be very much “gui lty”!

Singing with a bunch of people who m I do not know made me nervous! After the audition, I was told that my assigned role was “tenor”. Hmmmm.... Perh aps, if I worked harder, I could sing like Pavorotti!!

post information author: Daniel Ku

manager role: singer date: May 2008 subscribe: RSS comments: 8

Very touched and amazed at the leve l of commitment of the cast and crew . They turn up for rehearsals on time and hardly miss any. Wow…! I can see thei r love for God. They pray like the apostles of old during the days of Acts!

3 comments

I have built some new friendsh ips. Which is really nice since Trinity Christian Centre is the newly adopted spiritual home for our family.

1 comments

Two weeks before the production. We are in church h till 10 plus almost every other night… rehearsing! No time to o blog!!

Two down, one more to go. After two nights of presentation, we still had Easter Sunday service to present. I nea rly gave up after my son, who was alre ady down with fever and diarrhoea, dev eloped big patches of rashes. I SMS ed our team leader that I might not turn up to sing on Easter Sunday. The guy s prayed and miraculously, my son was fit eno ugh for church on Sunday. My mum had a cancer relapse. She has been on chemotherapy and strong medication. But God turned it around for good. My mot her whom my sister and I have bee n praying for 27 years, decided to be baptised in Malaysia on Resu rrection Sunday! Thanks to God and the prayer warriors in Trinity, challenges have become stepping stones for greater victories!!! Seeing the whole production come together was awesome. Every musical note sun g and every moment of prayer was worth it. I felt like I was not singing alone but with the rest of the army of God , plundering hell and populating heaven, proclaiming the gospel message to those whom God loves. 93 93


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EASTER 2008 Preparation work for what was to take place at Easter began right from the turn of the year. Ideas were churning in the minds of all who were involved as they brainstormed over cups of coffee. Recruitment for the cast and crew started, with auditions taking place in early February. The Children’s and Chinese ministries were also hard at work planning for Twist, an exciting game show, and Life’s Tic-Tac-Toe, a Chinese Easter evangelistic

As we examined each A

event, respectively.

p piece of evidence, we w were brought back to

While rehearsals were taking place, Trinitarians

tthe scene where it all

embarked on the very essence and atmosphere that

h happened. Through

would sustain and bring to fruition all the hard work

ccompelling drama,

put in by the production team – prayer. Trinitarians

i songs and d an array off multi-media effects, moving

engaged in prayer individually, in their carecells,

we revisited the lives of Jesus and His disciples. All

during pre-service prayer, and Church Prayer

the evidence pointed to the fact that Jesus was

Meeting. We brought the names of our friends and

guilty. Yet what was He guilty of? Guilty of healing

loved ones before the Lord and prayed that they

the lame on the Sabbath. Guilty of loving and

would get connected to the love of God during

befriending the outcasts. Guilty of forgiving those of

Easter. This culminated with a 3-day Fast.

ill repute. Guilty of being the Son of God. Guilty of loving us.

The weekend of God encounters started on Maundy Thursday, where we commemorated the Last Supper

As the Holy Spirit moved powerfully in our midst,

at our touchstone Communion Service, which is a

individuals and whole families made decisions

Trinitarian tradition. GUILTY! took place on Friday

for Christ. Trinitarians were overjoyed for their

and Saturday, concurrently at Trinity@Adam and

family members and loved ones as they shared in

Trinity@Paya Lebar, with two separate casts and crew.

the moment of decision with them. That was not

It was the same creative production, yet unique in

all. Easter Sunday was a wonderful celebration

presentation. Over at Trinity@Adam, Pastor Dominic

across the different ministries and congregations

Yeo and his “forensic team” set about examining

– children and adults; English, Chinese and other

the evidence that condemned Jesus as guilty,

language ministries.

while at Trinity@Paya Lebar, Pastor Beatrice was the Prosecutor showing us all the compelling evidence

In total, we had close to 500 first-time visitors and

before us proving that Jesus was guilty…but wait a

more than 200 decisions made for Jesus throughout

minute…was she instead speaking in His defence?

Easter. What an amazing weekend!

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70

students embark on UK University programmes

In an exciting development, 70 TCA College students have embarked on their internationally recognised, UK University validated programmes.

The validated programmes include:

MTh in Applied Theology (Ministry) MTh in Theology BA (Hons) in Theology* Post-graduate Diploma in Counselling Diploma in Higher Education in Creative Arts** * Certificate and diploma awards are also available ** Certificate award also available

This means that when they graduate from TCA College, they will gain University of Wales awards and receive the same recognition as fulltime students in the UK. The University of Wales is one of the largest universities in the United Kingdom. With this development, TCA College has the distinction of being the first and only institution in Asia offering University of Wales validated programmes in Theology.

Interested? Visit tca.edu.sg for more information. For application, please contact the Registrarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office at 6304 7602 or email admin@tca.edu.sg

96


www.tca.edu.sg Benefits of Undertaking a University of Wales Validated Programme

• The University of Wales awards are recognised internationally as a UK degree. This is immediately recognised within all Commonwealth countries and places all graduates on par with graduates from any other University. • The University of Wales awards allow graduates to continue to seek higher education in relevant areas of study at universities worldwide as well as at Bible seminaries. • The University of Wales awards presents greater possibilities for the student to engage in market-place and “tent-making” ministries as they are recognised by governments internationally. • The University of Wales programmes guarantee the quality provided by TCA College to the students. • The cost of obtaining the University of Wales awards are only a fraction of the cost of obtaining an equivalent award at the University of Wales in the UK (13% to 25% of the cost in UK, depending on the courses). • Students on validated programmes of study have access to the Online Library of the University of Wales, offering them a wide range of subjects and resources.

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n i e Gon e hours! e r h t

urprise s y b s n a i r a t akes Trini t p -u n g i s y r a up Extraordin as spotted signing r schedule and w

y in the histor y extraordinary da an as w 08 20 8, March ld go down in n Centre that wou tia ris Ch ity in Tr of p 1,100 church cam the day a record posterity. It was ing day of ld out on the open packages were so registration.

at ere snapped up s, all packages w Within three hour le Lebar. Peop and Trinity@Paya both Trinity@Adam r registration, early as 8.30am fo as up g in eu qu were m. Certainly led to star t at 4p du he sc as w ch hi w d unprecedented! extraordinary an any by surprise. response took m g in lm he w er ov e, The not get a packag those who could e at od m m co ac To on a wait list and ittee placed them the camp comm ay Inn Resort oms at the Holid ro e or m r fo d te . negotia rnative locations Am as well as alte aCh h ac Be nt Rege t she could not Joan Swee though Corporate trainer er, she managed ar ’s camp. Howev make it for this ye

to change he bar. at Trinity@Paya Le

the packages leader heard that When a carecell wn immediately fast, she rushed do were selling out e wanted. cure packages sh se to e tim in , up to sign and pay for the e could pre-book sh if at th id sa e Sh she would! next camp now, ntres were sign up at both ce Those waiting to games such as loads of fun and ith w ed in rta te en d even an SMS miniature golf an paper basketball, ever yone. Prizes as something for contest. There w xtraordinary ” limited-edition “E e, siv clu ex d de inclu s. T-shirts and towel aking this 1,281 campers, m is lly ta l na fi e th To date, or y. If you’ve er in Trinity ’s hist ev p m ca t es gg the bi an extraordinary u in Cha-Am for yo e se , up d ne sig experience!

99


Carecells showcase creativity in Extraordinary Burger contest Building on the Extraordinary theme, carecells

The prize presentation

were encouraged to create the most extraordinary

was held on March 30

burger, submit a photo of that burger and take a

with each winner getting

deep breath. The results: a showcase of creativity

a trophy imprinted with

and innovation from carecells – from an aeroplane

a picture of their extraordinary

burger to take Trinitarians to the camp to a

burger, and a bag of burger sweets.

representation of the five loaves and two fishes. Like on the registration day, there Many carecells took part in the competition and

were fun games for all. Adults and

the following emerged as winners:

children took part in

· Dover Crescent 18, West, Trinity@Adam

a gigantic Snake and

· CCK 618, West, Trinity@Adam

Ladder board game

· Toh Yi, West, Trinity@Adam

as well as a paper

· CH – BB639 YA, Chinese District

aeroplane contest.

· SEM 509, North, Trinity@Paya Lebar · Guilin 20 & Guilin 22, West, Trinity@Paya Lebar

Cha-Am, here we come! With heightened anticipation since the extraordinary sign-up on March 8, this camp, as its name suggests, will indeed be extraordinary. Since the planning of the camp began last year, the three key extraordinary takeaways desired for every camper is: 1 Expectation: a belief that God will do something radical in our lives in this camp. 2 Experience: an experience that is life changing. 3 Exploit: brave and extraordinary things that we will do after this camp (Daniel 11:32). Just as the disciples were ordinary men who became extraordinary because they had been with Jesus (Acts 4:13), we believe that our church camp speakers Rev David Doery and Rev Ong Sek Leang will have powerful life-changing messages for us, so that we can arise to be extraordinary men and women for God’s glory. Do pray for the camp and come with an open heart to hunger for more of God in Cha-Am. Didn’t manage to book a church camp package? You can still catch speaker Rev David Doery at the weekend services before the camp! 101


It gave y expectations! m et m an th e AlphaTrack mor e things of undation in th fo al tu iri sp me a strong k and minister ok time to spea to rs ne ai tr e as God. Th art for God. I w built in me a he d an t, ar p he re y to m Track p ared en, and Alpha th an ti is hr C quite a new ver I went. rve God where se to e m d ire and insp ill using nt then, I am st ar le I gs in th e All th plunge! glad I took the them now! I am intern h Fei, ministry Asher Chung Ka

31 Aug 12 – Oct

It’s time to take the plunge! AlphaTrack is a three-month, full-time programme that will fast-track your Christian experience and get you into the things of God like nothing else can. Whether you are a student or a professional, AlphaTrack is one adventure you can’t afford to miss out on! Tel: 6468 4444 • Email: alphatrack@trinity.org.sg • Website: www.trinity.net/alphatrack

AlphaTrack Mission for life


Life Skills Seminars Smart Solutions for Balancing Busy Lives You want to achieve balance in life, while maximising every moment you have. These seminars are just what you need! Don’t miss this opportunity to pick up practical tips that will help you succeed!

Jul 19 OR Aug 3 Anger Management “I don’t know what came over me. I blew my top again!” Sound familiar? Anger is a powerful emotion. However, it need not be destructive. It can be tamed, and even channelled into healthy expressions that ultimately benefit relationships and issues. Discover what triggers off this powerful emotion, learn to respond to anger expressed by others, and discover lifechanging strategies of anger management.

ve

lo nger and whom you a g in d n se Understa ts tho c e f f a t how i

What past participants say Interesting and helpful! I learnt that everyone needs an outlet for their anger and it helped me relate better to others. - Chevy Kok, engineer

Aug 17 OR 24 Creative Balloon Sculpting Always wanted to make something creative, tell stories with your balloons or just make someone’s day with an awesome creation? Learn the skill of balloon sculpting hands on! Twist and turn out balloon shapes and animals that will ‘wow’ your kids and friends and let you create your own story.

Creative Balloon Sculpting

What past participants say It was great to learn a skill that could be used to bless others especially children. – Betsy Phua, audiometrician

Register online at www.trinity.net or at Level 2 Church Information Counter. Registration closes one week before the seminar or when the class is full, whichever is earlier. Sign up early to avoid disappointment! For more information, visit www.trinity.net

Tel: 6468 4444 • Fax: 6467 6005 • Email: admin@trinity.org.sg • www.trinity.net • Co.Reg.No: 197802911H

Trinitarian Magazine Issue 2/2008  

Trinitarian Magazine Issue 2/2008

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