At my family home in Singapore, we had two days of “open house ” for family and friends over the two days’ Chinese New Year holidays 2015. It was a time of revelation, of human struggle and perseverance as hearts were open to share the experiences of the year just past.
As is traditional, close and far relatives came to pay their respects and wish my dad long life for the coming year as he is now the oldest in the extended family. There were more than one hundred and fifty who came in different family nuclear sizes from two to ten , of all ages, from a few months old to over 80 years old. They came at different times and that gave us opportunity of close fellowship and sharing and for some it was ministering to them. Many we have not seen since last year, as the stresses of life have kept us distracted from each other and pursuing to keep noses above water, or enjoying the youth and beauty of career and social upward mobility. Many have grown and looked much older than the time lapse of one year when we last met, due to ill health or just the pressures of life or sorrows of life or abuse. Several are missing due to travel around the globe or just entered to their eternal reward. Many prosperous, yet further from the truth while others are poorer worldly wise, yet richer in spiritual experience and endurance. There were several who could not visit as according to tradition they should not visit and bring bad luck while they are in mourning.
We shared here a blessing, there a promise, here a prayer, there an encouragement, there sin’s penalty and judgement – it was ministry time.
What has been common for each experience? As we talked we realized that at every turn, each one has had an encounter with God and their result has been the choice made in obedience or contrary to the will and the call of The Lord. Where self-will prevailed contrary to the will of God, there have been struggles to the extent of suicide or peace despite the stiffest opposition and negative environment in the will of God.
One just lost the will to live and gave up one early morning, succumbing to pneumonia. Another just ran away from home feeling no one cared with divorce in the end. A child who is suffering from attention deficit did antics during their visit to the embarrassment of his parents and grandparents and for whom we were moved in compassion to pray.
It seems my extended family reflects the Singapore community and perhaps the world community which is aging, getting more and more in trouble in lowered morals, man eating man to survive and becoming godless to their disadvantage and shame. Many are in need of the Savior who when He is Lord can lead them out of the morass of degeneration and decay, to life abundant and everlasting.
It truly reinforces to me, Steve Green’s song People need The Lord… http://youtu.be/5GOLZdZsHzM
May The Lord have mercy – we pray with them or for our visitors , as they leave our home. For the majority it will be for another year. For one or two perhaps forever.