(Sharing 8 July 2010)
What is the love of the Shepherd?
Helping one personally
Helping many anonymously
God spoke to me through bible verses all the days of my life. When I was trying to tidy up the verses in MS Word documents, the verses where most of the times, I have shared, inscribed it on my wedding ring, pinned up on my magnetic whiteboard, put up at my ex-company and my company now, and even put up at my house door… I confirmed through and saw that God had a reason to made me remember them.
I was in "Student Fellowship" back in my old church "Sion Presbyterian Church". I was asked to share. I shared with <Ps 13>. It just describes my dilemma on my relationship with God. It is a very personal relationship, and I was blessed to pray to Him like a personal friend. Yet, many times, I could not overcome; I need to go through lengths of prayers in order to be freed. Yet, I was really in joy when I received some answers. I recorded all the answers I received in prayers in a notebook, but then also discovered that all the answers could not be applied again when I encountered the same problems again – it seemed that problems kept coming up greater and greater so that the answers I received previously became a hard dry truth that never was able to help. I need to go through prayers in order to meet the loving Father in tears. Never did I know that this was the prayer that got me blessed – I never can erase this psalm in my life. It was the mystery of receiving answers in the midst of prayers revealed to me then, which must be firmly grounded on Jesus Christ and His cross — look at the change in prayer tone between verse 4 and verse 5 — completely different, and that is why I can receive the Emmanuel message so heartily and joyfully at first hearing. The Lord made this happen.
I was in deep problems of just wanting to help the Student Fellowship, for I saw a lot of hypocrisy and weaknesses in the church. I prayed for a community of love and mission-mindedness to come, but never did I expect God to send a wonderful messenger, then Missionary Leechull, to minister and spoke about Jesus Christ, again and again. I had never saw a preacher sharing messages so centered on Jesus Christ, and with so much interest. It was his interest in Jesus Christ that captured me. Everyone looked tired and sleepy, but he continued to shared as if he knew of Jesus Christ so much, so that he shared so many things about Jesus Christ. It was simple, and as if we have all heard the gospel message on Jesus Christ, yet I was captured because he could explain Jesus Christ in all angles, and yet it is still the gospel message. Everyone could listen to the message – including non-believers. I thought I knew Christ, but Jesus Christ floated out from Old Testament and New Testament and I felt I re-found Jesus Christ.
Anyway, accepting is one thing, but I really tried to do one thing, that back-then Pastor Rickson tried to tell me to try to pray, and this is the first touch of the Holy Spirit on my life that I ever knew. The Holy Spirit has always been convicting me from since I believed in Christ, but I do not know Him at all. It was until I prayed this prayer back in year 1997, "Lord, fill me with Your Holy Spirit." At that moment, everything changed. The Holy Spirit made me not being able to remain in weakness, but must purify all myself and follow the Lord. I realized that that is the power of the Holy Spirit. These made me follow the messages all the way till now.
I was shocked but accepted, for I knew that the God in the bible is that above all – there is not one message in all the Christian messages I heard that exclaimed this. I revered those who can boast in this, for this is the very Great Commission of Jesus Christ. Yes, we have a lot of weaknesses and ungospelized areas, but the Lord Jesus Christ never reduced the Great Commission on us when we are weak. (I was brought up under the influence of Campus Crusade of Christ from Secondary Two, and I understood that if there is no purpose of preaching the gospel, the church is in indulgence and not set apart from the world.) One day, I dreamt, and this verse came up: <Mt 24:14>, I quickly turned the bible and saw the verse, and this verse clinged onto me till now.
From end of year 2003, I received a promise from Rev Leechull, a position specially given to me from God. I was Caleb. I was filled with ups and downs so much, but one day, I just turned to the bible and find the promise that God specially made to Caleb. When I read the verse, I quickly printed it out and pinned it on my wall. Slowly, I found that Caleb is really a great ancient of faith, and I thought I was like him, but slowly, I discovered that it was not easy to have Caleb’s attitude. That resoluteness in Caleb was itself a miracle. I humbled and made him my model, as the Lord called me to.
In discipleship training with <Acts>, I could hear Pastor Vincent shouting and proclaiming so much, ever more trying to tell the church that we are a blessed bunch. Amidst many discouragements in leading the church, even within myself in my ex-company "Cal-Comp Electronic (s)", I heard this verse in going through DT with the book of <Acts>. The next day, I printed this verse out and pasted it on my office’s PC monitor, reminding myself – "No, I am not in shits and lousiness, but all that I am going through are for the advancement of the gospel, and I shall rejoice only in this." Some people asked me, got a little interested, but no much visible fruits. You never know how much sufferings and tears I had gone through, but my closest coworkers knew.
When we were going through Discipleship Training on Bible Overview on the person David in 2Samuel, I heard this verse, and I quickly again printed this out. Do you know where I placed this? Don’t laugh at me, but I stuck an A4 paper outside my house door. I wanted to remind myself, my wife, and my family, and my neighbors that the Lord will definitely accomplish – all my enemies will surely be gone.
These were the verses that Rockefeller, who revolutionized petroleum industry, and held on to tithes and loving God and men. He was not a church pastor, but he did things so similarly as great as Joseph or Daniel, confessed by all. I still have these printed out and stuck on my IBM RSS Hardware Laboratory workstation. A firmware engineer asked me, "What is this?" Then he began to read. Half-way there, he replied, "Har, you are a Christian ah?" I was half-ashamed – there was no Christ’s fragrance in me so that people can recognize me as a believer of God. Therefore, these three verses, all the more, stuck into me, as an office-worker, spending 1/3 of my time in secular job, yet promised with having the meaning purpose of the covenant in the job (else I would rather rot than live with meaningless rat race office work).
路得说, 不要催我回去不跟随你, 你往哪里去, 我也往那里去, 你在哪里住宿, 我也在那里住宿, 你的国就是我的国, 你的神就是我的神, 你在那里死, 我也在那里死, 也葬在那里, 除非死能使你我相离, 不然, 愿耶和华重重地降罚与我!
Some months ago, I heard this message again in Sunday, over the mp3 downloads. I shouted on top of my voice, "Amen!" while listening. I quickly found this verse and pasted it in a MS Word file, continually recommending my wife to paste this up. This was the most emotional, yet most cut to the heart piece of two verses, containing the gospel of Christ’s cross, yet about the never-giving up of discipleship training and getting the heavenly crown. Death is the minimum penalty, and the greatest penalty and fear is not being able to follow God, so that God can be beside always. I know it is not about part-time job now. I am Today’s Christ, a preacher and a missionary in the matrix of the world.
Today, I caught this verse while doing Bible Overview Notes for Ezekiel. This is the Living Springs. Every word is so beautiful, and has soooooo much meaning. The living springs of waters came from the Holy Temple of procedure, confirmation and that can be tested through time, now flows to the ends of the earth, giving springs of life every turn and place it goes, everything become useful, tasteful, succulent, and joined together, and ever new refreshing fruits of kept coming up. The living springs that comes from the system of FORMATTING (= confirming) God’s Word (= receiving Holy Spirit), does all these miracles that are practically grounded, planted and ever-growing. The fruits on the ends of the trees present the Word of God through the unlimited Holy Spirit, so that there are new tongues, new enlightenment of messages for the ever-changing generations and eras, and new testimonies that tell us that the gospel never gets out of tradition. And all the leaves can give healing to the heart, soul, body, lifestyle, relationships weaved and knitted of true friends and coworkers in love and one-mindedness, fun to the family, and in resting (greenery that gives peace, tea leaves that gives medicine and aroma, leaves giving shade and a place to play and have recreation). The tree represent the cross message and the 36 lessons, where it forms the skeleton and strength of the whole structure; the fruits represent that God is walking with us, and we see fruits happening in front of us so that we know the prayer topics that we can pray next and prepare messages; the leaves are the bible overview messages, where we fill in the tree skeleton and the fruits of the tree. The leaves form the Word of God in its intricate detail, confirming up into the Holy Spirit continually convicting our hearts to heal us and move us towards becoming a healer.
But may we all become psalmists and proverb-makers, where our words can be like poetry, yet sharp and soothing to the eyes, ears and hearts of the true sheep of God! And I discover that nothing gets closer than the very words of God in the bible – there are verses which really capture and prophesy, just like the verses listed above that carved my life, my lifestyle and my unique calling.