砂拉越年会一直在推动「一人一生至少献一年」，感谢主，让我在参加「三邦走向万邦」时呼召了我。感谢主，让我的母亲愿意支持我回应神的呼召，也支持我参加 这次校园中心第一次的海外短宣。感谢主，让我在大学毕业前，参加了我第一次的海外短宣。感谢主，让我有勇气到印尼坤甸，以非母语（印尼语）进行短宣。感谢 主，让我是马来西亚人，是我从小学习马来语，虽然讲的不是很流利，但多少还是能够沟通，也听得明白当地人有些的对话（因为有些印尼语跟马来语还蛮相似 的）。
我们的短宣队大多数的成员都是大学生。起初，我们一直觉得还有很多时间预备各种东西，到最后才发现，我们的时间被大考给占据了。尤其 是负责节目的我跟另一位队员，我们又要准备大考，又要安排时间翻译剧本（从英语的圣诞剧本翻译成印尼语），练习戏剧，安排整个行程，准备各样的游戏，节目 等等。感谢主，到最后我们还是尽我们的努力把东西准备好。
神总是在我们的后面做我们的靠山。我真的没有想过只是一通电话，一段简单的问题， 就解决了我们的最大的烦恼。我们一直到出发前的最后一次讨论都很犹豫用四律传福音合不合适。就在出发前的崇拜后在我母堂的一位姐妹，从我母亲那里知道我们 要到印尼坤甸短宣后，问我将用什么材料传福音。当我说四律时，她建议我跟教会的另一位姐妹借用一个比较生动有趣的传福音材料，因为毕竟我们的队员也不太熟 悉马来语的四律。感谢主，我借到了，我们也用了那个材料。真的比较生动有趣，容易吸引小孩的目光，也能够跟当地的小孩有很好的互动。
这次的短宣让我得着很多。我并不觉得我有为主做了什么大事，反而透过与思伶宣教士的配搭，与弟兄姊妹的相处让我学习了很多。在那里的 弟兄姐妹总是热心服事神。我们在那里有机会到两个教会服事。其中一个教会正在建造新的礼拜堂，所以每个星期他们都会到不同的弟兄姊妹家里进行祷告会。 是神的恩典，让他们愿意开放他们的家来进行聚会。
他们也愿意带我们到另一个小教会去探访一些弟兄姊妹，让我们有机会更加了解他们。我们的短 宣队分成两个小队到不同的家进行探访。我们这一队到的其中一个家庭，他们最大的孩子是个小儿麻痹症的孩子。可是他们并没有埋怨神，反而还不停歇地参加聚 会。因为孩子需要人每天的照顾，所以每个星期天，母亲会到另一个有早场崇拜的教会参加崇拜，父亲则在家里照顾孩子；晚上就轮到父亲参加崇拜。他们那虔守主 日的态度是值得我们学习的地方。
God answered our prayers by Samuel
Initially did not plan to join the mission trip, felt that I would not be able to contribute to the team. The information provided was that the main activities was to teach mandarin tuition and for door to door evangelism. I was held back by language barrier; I only took mandarin until primary six and have returned all of it to my teachers. Encouraged by a sister that there would also be the need for people to work and to help out on odd jobs during tuition classes, I finally agreed to join.
Appointed as the event coordinator together with sister Carmen, we had to plan out the details for each event we were asked to carry out in Pontianak. Upon starting the preparation for the mission trip I realized that it was not only focused on mandarin tuition classes, there were 3 sessions of house to house evangelism planned along with evangelistic meetings and youth fellowships. Given the short period of time to prepare, we were blessed that sister Alvina sacrificed her time to go home during the semester break to help in the preparations. God’s grace was upon our preparations. He sent people to help us out when we do not know where to locate drama props. At the last minute, someone was sent to introduce and lend us the “Kids EE Gospel Cubes” which aided a lot in our preparation for the house to house evangelism. All members of the mission team were not proficient in Indonesian language thus the simple pictures and visual aid that the “Kids EE Gospel Cube” provided was of great help during the mission trip.
When we reached Pontianak, we had a hard time getting through the custom because she required us to show her return flight tickets which we did not have (we did not need to have it printed to board the plane). After a lengthy discussion, she allowed one of our members accompanied by an airport security to print the proof for purchase of return tickets. From the beginning of the journey God was already reminding me that no matter how much preparation I had made, I would never be in control of everything but instead I needed to constantly pray and rely on Him. After getting through the custom check, we were brought to a mall where we could buy daily necessities such as drinking water, fruits, and biscuits. To be able to call between the team, some of us tried to buy cellphone sim cards from a mobile shop but we were totally unable to communicate with the shop owner. Malay language seemed to be very foreign and they could not understand it. This made us very worried because we had house to house evangelism later in the week.
Thankfully, God answered our prayers. We were able to communicate well with nearly everyone (kids, adults and old people) we met throughout the week using our Bahasa Melayu mixed with Bahasa Indonesia picked up along the way. The house to house evangelism was not as scary as I thought it would be because the people were very open and receptive to our visitations. There were also houses where we were blessed by the testimonies that they shared to us. For families that were already Christians, we taught them how to share the gospel by giving them a “five colored book”; for families that were not yet Christians, we shared the gospel; for families that were sick, we prayed for them. It was a very enjoyable and heartwarming experience to see how God was working in the life of people in this place.
Throughout the whole mission trip I had seen God working through each of us (mission team members) and also people surrounding us! Even the only thing holding me back from joining the mission trip (teaching mandarin tuition class) was canceled. God has blessed the team with so much talent, enthusiasm and most of all, love for Him and His work. The biggest comfort I got from one of the members of the team was when we were faced with a sudden change of events due to unforeseen circumstances; a brother said with a grin: “God made last minute guys for a reason!” then I realized that God has put different people in this team to complement the weakness of each and every member. To God be the Glory.
Him giving authority to His disciples by Irene
I felt privilege to be able to join the
mission trip from 04th December 2013 to 10th December
2013 with my other seven church members. This was the first international
mission trip that was commissioned under Senadin Methodist Campus Gospel
Centre. Imagine how honour it was to be in the pioneer team. Like all the local
mission trips I went before, I always felt I return home feeling more blessed
because God has given me something to bring home – new lessons learned at His
harvest field. Pontianak
Our trip various activities, which are the focus of this testimony, included roving prayers, home visitations and evangelism, Christmas celebration fellowships and many more. A great thank to Belle the missionary who chaperoned us around during our whole time in
During the roving prayers, Belle droved us around town and stopped at places where she would tell of them and we would pray. I enjoyed this moving prayer meeting as we got to do some sight-seeing and pray at the same time. I remember that besides praying for the new church building funding and construction to be successful, I learned about the trend that for every church that was set up there, the government would plant a mosque nearby, saw two huge Buddhist temples and became aware that not only the churches realize that they can provide Mandarin Tuitions for the Indonesia people as an opportunity to share the good news but pagan worshippers too are working hard on this method to share their own beliefs rapidly. I hope you see the urgency in these matters like what I feel right now.
Next, I like to talk about home visitations and evangelism. We split into two teams to go door-to-door to share the gospel using gospel cubes. I realized that my problem was language barrier. I tried my best to speak in Bahasa and Hakka in conversations and in spreading the gospel but somehow I felt so limited in words. The funny thing was they understood my Hakka but I couldn’t completely comprehend theirs. In addition, Bahasa
different from Bahasa Indonesia. Although I prayed beforehand that language
barrier would not be a problem for us but somehow, I still felt stressful in
this area. Although I am aware of the need to improve my Bahasa, I also trust that
it is of the work of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of the people I shared the
good news to and I was just the messenger at that time and place. Malaysia
Lastly, I wish to briefly share an incident that I never thought I would encountered in my whole life. After the Christmas celebration fellowship, a teenage girl became demon-possessed. It was the first time the church there ever experienced it too. We prayed for her few times because it kept coming back. It was a very brain and physically draining for me, not to mention scary too. When we returned to our hotel, we always have devotions and sharing together before sleep. That night, coincidently, the bible passage (Matthew 9:25-10:4) that we read consisted the incident of Jesus casing out a mute demon-possessed man and Him giving authority to His disciples to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness. Is our faith not strong enough that we could not cast it out once and for all, like Jesus? Also, have we been taking this trip very care freely that we forgot to put on the whole armor of God and totally forgot that we are in spiritually warfare daily? I think this incident has awakened me to see that spiritual warfare is indeed very real in life. My routine and complacence life at comfortable ‘home sweet home’ may have clouded this realization long time ago.
To put it all in a nutshell, it was a great experience. I challenge those who have read my testimony to go and personally experience the love and warm welcome that the Pontianak church given us and to taste the delicious local delicacies there.
Trust in the power of God by Jonah
When it comes to missionary works, most of us may hesitate to participate. This is because we may think that it takes up our time and hinder us from other activities in life. However, I am glad that I did not hesitate when I was given the opportunity to go to Pontianak, Indonesia for missionary works. In fact, I personally have past experiences in reaching out to people overseas before. Therefore, I immediately complied and signed up for this mission trip because I felt that we as Christians must fulfill the Great Commission given by Jesus Christ that is to proclaim the good news to all nations (Matthew 28). Praise the Lord as I have learned a lot from this mission trip. Not only that I got acquainted to many cheerful Indonesians over there but I also drew even closer to God and my relationship with God was strengthened as I learned to trust in the power of God and not my own abilities when it comes to evangelistic works.
Altogether there were eight of us in the team. I learned that commitment in our responsibilities is very important. In a team, each of us was assigned a role in preparing for the trip. Therefore, all of us really did our utmost in practicing, preparing and praying for the trip. Even though each of us was preoccupied with exams and assignments in university, by God’s grace and guidance, eventually we got all the programs well planned and prepared before the trip. Besides, in spite of fellowshipping joyously in church, whenever it comes to sharing the gospel to non-believers, we must pray fervently for God’s presence to be with us at all times so that the Holy Spirit is at work and lost souls can be saved. During the days in Pontianak, I really did pray for every event that was arranged. Indeed I felt the presence of God because I believed that He is at work at all times. By being committed in serving the Lord, all of our efforts that we have put for God will surely not be in vain rather be pleasing testimonies to God.
Another important element that I have learned throughout this trip is being sociable. By doing so, I have to be competent in mingling with people I met so that the Message could be conveyed easily. Hence, this was indeed a great challenge for me because I have to learn to communicate in Bahasa Indonesia. Not only that, the tough part is speaking the gospel in Bahasa Indonesia! It took me loads of practices to be used to speaking in Bahasa Indonesia. Prior to the start of the trip, my team gathered in Kuching to have our practice. Indeed it was quite rush for us but at the end of the day, the result of our efforts was worth dedicating to God. On my first house-to-house visitation, I got the opportunity to approach a sick elderly woman. She was weak and a non-believer. Hence, I mustered my composure to share the gospel to her. That was my first time speaking in Bahasa Indonesia and surprisingly I spoke well. At first I thought of asking my friend, Peter to do the talking because I was scared. Nevertheless, I prayed silently to God and the scenario somehow compelled me to give myself a try. Praise the Lord that whatever I said she understood. Before we left, she insisted on having us to pray for her illness. Although she did not agree to accept Jesus Christ at that moment but I was certain that the seed is sowed deeply in her and her family.
Life has never been like a bed of roses. At times there are ups and downs that entangle us from complete happiness. After this trip I realized that I have to have faith and confidence in God at all times. In my life, I often encounter temptations and oppressions by evil spirits. I felt sad and sometimes emptiness in life. In such situation, I tend to blame God and complain to Him every time. I would question God, why are You inflicting me with so much pain where I did so much to serve you in church? All of these negative thoughts in my mind made my life meaningless and dull. I started to doubt that whether does God even exist and listen to my prayer. Truly, this has a huge impact in my life. After this trip, I learned something very important. First, I learned that God always listens to our prayers. He is always there when we quiet down our hearts and look to Him contritely. Whether He answers or not that is up to God. Secondly, I learned that believing and having faith in what you pray for is also very important. During the trip, I constantly prayed for every event and I told myself that God is always with us wherever we go. One night after a youth fellowship, we experienced a young girl got disturbed by the evil spirit. At that moment all of us, including the pastors and leaders there prayed for the young girl loudly to God. Frankly, I felt the power of God and after that I realized that I have to have faith and be ready for every challenge that I would face along the way because everything we do for God is a spiritual warfare. Hence, I always remind myself that God is with me at all times!
As a closing, I want to take this opportunity to thank Pastor Tiong Huong Ong and SMCGC for giving me the chance to participate in this mission trip. This trip has improved my relationship with God and strengthened my spiritual life. I hereby encourage all Christians to take part in missionary works because I figured that this is a good way to lay a firm foundation in our Lord, Jesus Christ. Hence, by the grace of God, I am looking forward to experience further changes in life owing to be closer to God. I hope to walk this journey of faith with God intimately until the end. May the Lord bless all those who serve Him.
Signs from Pontianak, Indonesia by Adam
Pontianak = Vampires.
Well that was a cold joke. Huh. But all kidding aside, conflicted is a word I would use to describe how I felt as I was approached to join our church’s (SMCGC Miri) first overseas mission trip to Pontianak, Indonesia. Remembering back, I felt rather daunted by the fact that I would be venturing into a place similar yet so alien from my own home.I turned the offer down.
But as time passed, this weighed down on me more and more, and I finally decided to take up the challenge. I told the person –in- charge I changed my mind and would like to join the mission trip.
Imagine my disappointment when she told me all the spots were taken! After all the struggling I went through to come to my decision. But God, being ever faithful, provided a way for me to go as right before the closing date one of the members dropped out leaving a spot open for me.
So given the 6 days that we had there, 3 things in particular got my attention, and I would like to think that these are what the Lord has guided me to Pontianak to learn.
I came to these realizations when trying to write this testimony, so my sequence of events will not be in chronological order.
First of all, I remembered Pastor Tiong’s sermon when he preached in Pontianak on the Sunday that we were there. We arrived in Pontianak on Wednesday, making Sunday the second to the last day of our mission trip. It touched on the signs that God had given to the shepherds regarding the birth of Christ and how we can look for these signs from God in our own lives. This made me think of the numerous occasions that God has shown to me throughout the mission trip of how He uses signs to point the direction to him.
Knowing that we went to Pontianak with the intention for mission work, it is understood that what we did could be considered small when compared to the overall work of the missionaries currently serving there. Therefore going on this mission trip served a 2 way purpose, namely trying to touch lives there, no matter how small our efforts may seem, and at the same time looking to see if the Lord has any message or designs during the mission trip that may change our own lives. During this trip I would like to think that the Lord has brought into both these things to pass.
It is hard to gauge how our mission work there would have touched the lives of those we were fortunate enough to meet and work with through our activities as we were only at Pontianak for a short period of time. But during our 3rd night at Pontianak, whilst conducting a Youth Night for the youths of Siaga, Pontianak, one of the girls there was struck down after the program. Different members of our mission team have different explanations for what exactly happened, but one thing was for sure was that that girl began to struggle with some demons from within her, either literally or figuratively. As she collapsed, we all began to pray for her for the Lord to expunge whatever may be troubling her inside. From what we gathered after the intervention, the girl had many unresolved issues in her life that may have been brought to light by our program that night. Some of the things we did may have been a sign as to bring out these issues inside her and so caused her to become vulnerable at that particular time. Regardless of any other fruits of our mission work there, I was glad to know that at least we had touched the life of this one particular girl.
From this experience it showed me that as an individual, mission work does not necessarily involves working head on. Every little thing that we do has the potential to resound and impact the lives of people around us, either in a positive or a negative way. Being Christians especially strengthens this possibility to bring people closer or further away from our Lord Jesus Christ. It is hard sometimes to always account for every little thing that we do, which is why it is good to always take time out of every day to do our devotion and meditate on whether or not our actions for the day reflects what Jesus would have done. As throughout this mission trip every night we did our devotion together and discussed what we did for the day, I felt this helped me especially to keep me grounded in our mission work and to keep me focused on the next day’s work.
As we drove around Pontianak for our mission, I couldn’t help but notice that the roads were constantly getting flooded by inadequate drainage systems. Given that Pontianak could be considered an advanced enough ‘town’ or ‘city’ I was surprised that the drainage system could not be constructed better. As I was studying to be a chemical engineer, drainage systems are not really my area of expertise, however, I felt that God was opening my eyes to the fact that even in my work I could do something to help other people. If I was a civil engineer, I could do my best to construct things that would last and not cause even more problems in the future like the drainage systems in Pontianak. Ever since I decided to choose chemical engineering as my major, I must confess that I didn’t really know what to do with it. The furthest aim I ever created was the thought of working at Shell or some other oil and gas companies as those seems to be the ‘crown’ achievement of becoming a chemical engineer. However through this trip I realized that perhaps it didn’t always have to be about the material route and that other routes could also render a sense of achievement, and could also play a part in furthering God’s plan for my life. For my part, I began to think that this could be my sign from God to start thinking about working with the other areas of chemical engineering that could help society such as wastewater management or biodiesel engineering. Before this trip, I saw these options, wrongly as I now know, as second-rate backup plans if unable to secure a job at the oil and gas companies. Now, I began to realize that these options could indeed be opportunities to serve something bigger than myself. Being a realist, I do not know how far these ideas of mine would take me, but I am grateful to the Lord for guiding me a little through this mission trip to realize the numerous options I have to make a difference, no matter how small, in my career later.
To sum up this testimony, I would like to share someone else’s testimony, a testimony I heard during our visitations in Pontianak. One of the last houses we visited in Siaga, Pontianak on the 3rd day we were there belonged to an old man whom we called ‘Bapa Ah Kong’. As we sat down in his living room, he began to share to us how he was assimilated into the Christian faith. Having a lousy command of the Indonesian language, I was only able to catch bits and pieces of his testimony, but with the help from my teammates I gathered the gist of it went something like this.
This man had no contact with his daughter for almost 10 years after she got married and went to Taiwan. Being a worshipper of a certain folk religion, he prayed to the god of that religion for those 10 years, asking for some kind of sign that his daughter was okay. He did not receive any news from her. Finally he gave up on his belief and went ‘religion-less’ for a few years. After this period of time, a friend of his invited him to come and visit the local church. He was very reluctant to go as he was convinced that there was no religion that was true with a god that could hear his prayers. However, his wife wanted to join the church and encouraged him to attend services. After a while he began to mellow and decided to try to believe again. He made a promise to God that if his daughter came back, he would become a true believer of Christ. He asked for a sign from God.
3 months after he attended the local church his daughter called back from Taiwan. As of today, he is making plans with his daughter to come visit him in Indonesia. He will wait for his daughter to arrive in Pontianak to see him being baptized in person.
Sometimes God sends us signs, not in hidden messages or through winding pathways that we need to decipherlike some kind of Sherlock Holmes detective. Sometimes God sends us signs that are so big and so real and direct, that it’s hard to believe it actually is from God. Our trained scientific minds crave a logical explanation for things and the crux of the matter is that not everything that God does needs to be mysterious and indecipherable. God sometimes work through very ordinary and normal ways that we take for granted and so we discount those signs as an act from God. This was how I used to think until I realized that God is actually in everything, affecting everything. And it is through the grace of God that we can have faith in the Lord that He will lead us and guide us through this life, using the most common and everyday signs to show us the plans He has for us. So as I wind down here to the end, I thank the Lord that He has led me through this mission trip, provided me with wonderful teammates (including our own Pastor TiongHuongOng and local missionary Belle Ting) and taught me to look around every day, and see His work in every, single, little thing in our lives.