by Anna Koh
Happy New Year and Happy 33rd Anniversary, dear CLGC family!
God is faithful, He has blessed us with the land and the building, and a rich spiritual heritage. The physical and spiritual heritage is a surety of what is to come: things yet unseen through the natural eyes but purpose and promises of God that can be perceived through the eyes of faith. Only let us be faithful stewards of what God has entrusted to us.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (Galatians 6:9)
As a church, we have a vision and we are stewards of it. We want to see everyone in CLGC (Yes, that’s you!) truly love God through a life of worship and authentic relationships. Through this love for God and for people, we will be able to impact communities and nations, all for the glory of God. To bring everyone to the same place, we need intentional discipleship. To disciple is to inspire, and to model the life of Jesus, so that we would love and live like He did.
There is an urgency for us to disciple and to be discipled, not only because it is the Great Commission of the Lord, but time is running out. The end is near, signs which Jesus spoke about are happening, and the intensity of persecution is increasing. In the World Watch List compiled by Open Doors Ministry, Malaysia is now at the 31st place among the most persecuted countries in the world. This is alarming considering we were at the 50th place just 6 years ago. The situation is not getting better. Who can stand in the face of intense persecution? It had been proven biblically and historically that true disciples of Jesus Christ had stood the test. Jesus said, those who stand firm till the end will be saved.
How about each one of us?
In the new year, we will adopt a 2-prong approach in discipleship, to equip and to relate. Jesus did both with His disciples. There is a place to learn and to be trained in a more formal setting, the disciples learnt through Jesus’ public teaching. But equally important is the time to relate and to share life. Jesus lived amongst them and shared the deeper truths through His life. They benefited most when they spent intimate time with Jesus, but both prongs are necessary.
The one area that we did not do well is that of discipleship through relationship. It needs to be our key focus to strengthen our vertical relationship with God and our horizontal relationship with one another so that we truly love and care for one another as in a family, and in the process, while we live in peace with each other, we also teach and admonish one another in all wisdom with the word of Christ (Col 3:15 – 17). Discipleship is a communal effort. You are your brother’s keeper. Yes, you are!
It is a new year, a new beginning. I hope that in your new personal resolutions, you will resolve to strengthen your relationship with God and with one another throughout the year. Just be reminded that resolutions require actions else they will just be wishful thinking. Together, let us embark on building strong relationships on the foundation of love.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.
And the second is like it: Love your neighbour as yourself.” Matthew 22:37,39