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Do Good

Freely my father gave, even after he lost his job

by Jeremy Lim | 15 December 2017, 3:07 PM

From a young age, giving was always inculcated in our family. My dad would give my siblings and I a $1 coin each to put into the offering bag at Sunday school in Church. Every time we went to a hawker center or coffee shop and saw someone selling tissue paper, he would pass us the biggest note in his wallet and ask us to bless the person with it.

I never really understood why my father was so generous and thought that he was giving because he had a lot of money; that whatever little sum of money he gave away was nothing to him.

I remember one afternoon, I was having lunch with him along Thomson Road. While we were eating, we saw a frail old lady with a trolley full of fruits, sitting just a few feet away from us. She had set up a makeshift “shop” along the pathway, right outside a tuition centre, and was trying to sell her goods to those who walked by.

How unfilial her children must be! I was thinking. Was there no one to take care of her?

God has never held back from providing, so why are we not giving?

Just then, my father got up and walked over to her. After a brief exchange, I saw him purchase some fruits from her before coming back to where we were seated. I couldn’t believe it! What in the world was he doing? Hadn’t our household just bought fruits yesterday? These fruits didn’t even look fresh!

I immediately asked my dad why he had bought more fruits when we already had so much at home. This was his reply: “God has never held back from providing, so why are we not giving?”

I didn’t question him further, although I still thought the money could have been better spent on getting a new phone or other more useful things. I still felt that he was wasting his wealth by treating it so lightly.

And then out of nowhere, things took a turn for the worse. My father was retrenched from his job.

My mother was left as the only sole breadwinner of our 6-member family. On top of that, my grandfather’s frequent medical check-ups were very taxing too. We were in financial difficulty, so my parents decided to start drawing out money from their bank accounts only every two months.

In that period of time, I was sure my father would not give like before. But I was wrong. He continued giving! Even when the Church needed funds for the new building, he pledged to contribute a regular sum of money every month – and it was no small sum.

I couldn’t help but think to myself, what was my dad doing? Here we were in a financial crisis, and there he was giving away what was ours. He never cut short on giving to others.

When we give back, we are doing just a small portion of what God has done for us.

Over breakfast one day, I finally asked him, “Dad, how is it that even though you’ve been retrenched, you cut back on things like travelling at the end of the year, but never giving? Almost everyone I know would do otherwise.”

Again, his answer was simple: “Of course I could’ve not given money to the Church or to people in need, saying I’ve got financial problems. I could even pray that God would give us more. But will I be happy with that?

“It is through giving that you see how fortunate you are, and through it you will find true joy. When we give back, we are doing just a small portion of what God has done for us. He has never shortchanged me when I’ve given.

“I know that as long as I faithfully give to Him and the people he loves, He will look at my cheerful heart and bless me greatly. That is why I give no matter what I am going through.”

I never ever forgot those words he said. We give because He first gave to us – holding back not even His only Son. And if God has never shortchanged us, who are we to shortchange in giving freely?

This is a submission from a participant of our Christmas Gift Exchange. From now till the end of December 2017, we are giving away a limited edition Tumbler in exchange for every story on the Christmas themes of love, joy, peace, hope and giving. Click here to find out more.


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Do Good

Drops of Life 2018: A week before Good Friday, another man gave his blood in my place

by | 23 March 2018, 2:02 PM

“You’ve never given blood before?” My editor looked at me incredulously. More specifically: “You’ve never given blood before and you want to encourage people to give blood this Easter?”

We were barely a week away from Good Friday, and I’d recently learnt that the Drops of Life initiative was happening again this year. Since 2016, LoveSingapore has collaborated with the Singapore Red Cross Society to host a blood donation drive, Drops of Life, over Easter weekend.

I always thought it was a compelling and meaningful cause. Jesus Christ truly was the biggest “blood donor” in world history – His blood shed for the wrongdoings of the whole of humanity, when it should have been our blood for our sins.

“For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it for you on the altar to make atonement for your souls, for it is the blood that makes atonement by the life.” (Leviticus 17:11)

“Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” (Hebrews 9:22)

Before blood can be given, blood must be tested.

In the time before Christ, the blood of unblemished animals was used in offerings to God to atone for sin – to cover it, so to speak. But this was only temporary, for the blood of animals could only cover sin, but not remove it. Think of it like a coat of paint; its effects kept wearing off. So this was the law: Animal blood had to be shed to fairly pay for sin, but it was not enough for a permanent removal.

Not until Jesus came to Earth to make the perfect, eternal sacrifice as the Holy Lamb of God.

The parallel was no coincidence – but divine right down to the unbroken bones of Jesus on the Cross. Prophecy after prophecy fulfilled in His time on Earth, and everlasting in effect.

“He entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. (Hebrews 9:12)

It was a brutal, bloody sacrifice and despairingly unfair in nature – for Jesus Himself never sinned. But that’s what it took, an unblemished man to shed his blood for the sins of mankind. And what unblemished man was there but one sent from God Himself – God in the flesh, who could die without a spot of sin?

He didn’t have to, but He gave His blood for us anyway. Anything to save our lives.

We’ll never be able – or required – to repay the favour, but this we can do: Donate from the life source that flows inside us, so that someone out there can live. Every day, 400 units of blood are needed to treat the ill and injured in Singapore; each sitting of blood donation draws 1 unit from us.

So much demand, but not much supply: Less than 2% of the population donates blood at all.

Saving lives made quick and easy at our bloodbanks.

That’s possibly because popping out to a bloodbank just isn’t the same as “Let’s go get some bubble tea”, and if you’re squeamish like me, a giant blood-extracting needle sticking in your arm for 15 minutes – or even entering your arm to begin with – isn’t exactly on the bucket list.

So when the conversation took an unexpected escalation to “Let’s all go donate blood today!” … I panicked. The only other person in the team who hadn’t ever given blood either also panicked. But my editor was adamant. “We can’t do a story on blood donation if the person writing it has never donated blood herself!”

Within an hour, four of us were out the door and on our way to the nearest bloodbank. The ride there was a blur. I wasn’t even giving all my blood or getting nailed to a cross, but here I was, hoping this cup would be taken from me.

Little did I know that my blood would not be found worthy.

After filling out the brief form on my medical history, I was called into one of the rooms to run through my details with the medical officer. Everything was clear, until we reached the segment on the medication I was taking. “You can’t give blood today,” she informed me. “You can’t have taken any medication in the past three days. Come back next time.”

I wasn’t as happy to hear this as I thought I’d be.

And as it turns out, of the four staff who made the trip down, only my editor made it through to the final step of actually giving blood; my fellow blood-donating newbie was found to have an iron deficiency after the blood test – she left with a complimentary dosage of iron supplements. The fourth among us had to do some heavy lifting for an event within the next 72 hours so wasn’t allowed to donate blood that day for her own safety.

Stay off medication and pump up the iron before you go!

“Looks like a man gave his blood for us again,” the three of us joked as we sat in the waiting area, looking longingly at the refreshments that were laid out … only for donors. After all, one person’s donation can serve three lives, as one of the many infographics on the walls helpfully informed us.

But it’s not such statistics that compel most to head to bloodbanks regularly. Sadly, it usually takes witnessing the great need for blood in hospital situations, in the face of emergency or illness. Blood cannot be kept for more than 42 days, which is why regular donation is everyone’s responsibility.

As I sat waiting for my editor to be done, and seeing four donors each sacrificing their precious lunch hour to make a bloody donation, I couldn’t help but think back on a time one of my best friends from university almost lost his life on the operating table. He lost a dangerous amount of blood – several litres of the mere 5L we have on average in our body – and was only saved that day by a major blood transfusion.

Someone’s donation made all the difference that day. Every donation could be the difference between someone living and someone dying.

I’m still uncomfortable thinking about that needle, but I think I’ll head back next week to try again.

Taking place over Easter weekend, Drops of Life is open to all who love Singapore and its people, regardless of race or religion. Please ensure that you’re qualified to donate beforehand. If you’re interested, please register here in advance.

Saturday, 31 Mar | 12pm-6pm
Resurrection Sunday, 1 Apr | 12pm-6pm

Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre
Level 2, Crescent 2


Joanne is a bundle of creative energy commonly heard before she is seen. She believes in the triune power of good conversation, brilliant writing and bold ideas. She also likes milo.


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Do Good

My struggle with becoming a full-time missionary

by Jiamin Choo-Fong | 19 March 2018, 4:43 PM

“Lord, please don’t ever call me to be a missionary!”

This was my plea after my first mission trip as an 18-year-old onboard Operation Mobilisation’s (OM) ship Doulos. It had been an amazing two months serving alongside 350 Christian volunteer crew members. We sailed on a ship that was only two years younger than the Titanic – the Doulos was a floating book fair bringing literature to people around the world.

We had sailed to the Philippines, where God opened my eyes to see a world beyond my safe harbour in Singapore. I was put in new situations where I learned to befriend children on the streets, offer a listening ear to ladies of the night, and pray for those behind bars. God broke my heart to care for those who were different, forgotten and marginalised. People just like me.

For the first time, I realised my faith in Christ isn’t just about my personal salvation, but a message to be rung out far and wide.

So impactful was this experience, that I’d already promised God to sign up for more mission trips. But there was a lurking fear that God would one day call me to full-time missions, and I resisted that thought. Being a missionary meant no financial security and separation from home. Not for weeks but years. Who would take care of my family if I were gone?

Papa passed away when I was 13. As the eldest child, I felt responsible to protect and provide for Mummy and my siblings. I often wished to grow up quickly and land a well-paying job in order to give them a better life. So I pushed myself to study hard and got into top schools. I wanted to make Mummy proud and prove that our single-parent family wasn’t to be looked down upon.

Over the course of my Psychology studies at National University of Singapore, I kept my promise to God, going on a mission trip every year with Cru – sharing Christ with university students in Japan during my school holidays. What I didn’t expect was that with every trip, God was actually revealing His plan for me to serve Him in full-time missions.

A visit to Niigata, Japan via Doulos

I realised there was nothing I desired more than to share God’s love with those who did not know Him. So, instead of fearing God’s call to be a missionary, I decided to offer my first-fruits to Him by rejoining Doulos after graduation – to bring His message of hope wherever the ship would sail to.

In my final semester, while my peers were sending in their CVs to prospective employers, I was sending in my missions application form to the OM office in Singapore. When people asked, “What will you do after graduation?” I shared about my decision to join Doulos. One exclaimed, “Are you mad? You’re throwing your degree down the drain. Let others do the job!” Some thought I was brave to go alone. Others were worried I wouldn’t be receiving a salary, and advised me to get a regular job first, to save some money before joining the ship. A few were genuinely happy for me.

But an auntie commented one day, “You’re the eldest child. If you go on Doulos, what’ll happen to your ageing mother? You’re supposed to take care of the family!” Her words left a deep cut. The accusation of being an unfilial daughter kept playing in my mind as I studied for my final exams. Haunted by guilt, the tears didn’t stop coming.

What proof did I have that it was God’s will for me to become a missionary? I saw neither visions nor burning bushes. I didn’t possess theological degrees or have seminary training. But what I did have was the best time of my youth, which I offered to God for His purpose.

I remember how Mummy responded to me, after I shared about my desire to serve as a full-time missionary. That evening, she was preparing dinner, frying noodles in the big black wok. I asked, “Mummy, if God is calling me to serve Him on Doulos, what do you think?” In a carefree tone, she said, “If God tells you to go, just go lor.”

Why wasn’t she stopping me from leaving? Didn’t she want me by her side? I thought she loved me! I got upset, “But Mummy, I’m not going for a short-term trip this time. It’s not two months – but two years! You won’t get to see me for two whole years!”

Mummy stopped cooking and looked into my eyes. She said, “Jiamin, since your father died, all I wanted was to bring up the three of you to walk in God’s way. Now that you’ve grown up and have come to know God personally, if He’s calling you to leave home and serve in a foreign land, I will not stop you. God has put you in this family for me to take care of you. You do not belong to me, but to Him. The important thing is for you to do what God is calling you to do.”

When I saw the tears trickling down her face, I could no longer put on a brave front. I cried along with her.

Jiamin’s reunion with her mum in Malaysia, after more than 1.5 years serving aboard Doulos.

Some time later, my church pastor – Pastor Paul – met up with me to discuss my preparation for missions, he said, “The best gift you can ever give to others is the Gospel.”

He reminded me to love God first, and not be distracted by the needs of the ministry. When I shared my concern about not being around to look after my family, Pastor Paul said, “Let the church fulfil its role to take care of the missionaries and their families. When you’re sent out as a missionary, others, including the family and the church, will be blessed because God will channel His favour to those who have let you go to serve Him.”

His words brought so much comfort. He added, “You have my full support! And you’ve got a wonderful mother.”

As the day of departure for Doulos drew near, the process of uprooting hurt more and more.

But as I turned my eyes upon Jesus – His greatness, His perfect goodness, His loving-kindness – my worries and even the pain started to fade away.

Off I went with my packed bags, following my Heavenly Captain out of the harbour and onboard His ship Doulos, where I sailed for 4 years to 31 countries in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Pacific – witnessing His glory and learning to love His world, one port at a time.

Jiamin is currently based in Singapore, serving with OM as a Missions Coordinator. Excited about raising up a new generation of missionaries, she’s part of the “Passion 4 Mission” (P4M) team that gathers young people to build community and share lives as they prepare for missions.

The next two P4M gatherings are:

  • 28 March (Wed) 7-9pm: Suffering; letting go of personal desires (sign up here)
  • 30 May (Wed) 7-9pm: Visibility of church leadership and which agency? (sign up here)

Jiamin has also written a book about her faith journey based on her journal entries after four years of sailing onboard OM’s mission ship Doulos. Check out her book Out of the Harbour, available at SKS, and at Singapore’s libraries.


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“Have the right finish line in mind”: Ed Silvoso reviews Singapore’s Antioch call to transform nations

by | 15 March 2018, 5:12 PM

Very often, the work of the church stays in the church. It’s a massive tragedy, said Ed Silvoso, who brought a powerful message of discipling the nations through the marketplace to Kingdom Invasion 2018.

“We’re bringing multitudes into the four walls of the church but never looking beyond,” the founder and president of Harvest Evangelism and the International Transformation Network told the audience in the morning of March 15, 2018.

“What goes on inside our four walls, inside the church building, should happen all over the city.”

In Silvoso’s words, the Church was designed to be an all-encompassing, ever-expanding movement – an out-going, dynamic people, not a static building. “Look how we have been fooled. Can you find the phrase ‘I go to church’ in the Bible? You are the Church!”

“I don’t know if you realise how religious we are,” Silvoso said, “What is needed for Singapore to become an Antioch is for leaders to choose the right finish line.”

“That finish line isn’t more people going to church – it is discipling a nation.

“It’s not about a bigger church, but the transformation of cities and nations.”

And to effectively disciple a nation requires moving out of the four walls of the church building and bringing the church to where people are: The marketplace.

The finished line isn’t more people going to church – it is discipling a nation.

This was a concept well-understood by the early church, which explains why the Gospel exploded across the world not from Jerusalem, the original religious centre, but from the merchant city of Antioch, where Paul brought his ministry to marketplace people.

Likewise, Silvoso believes we need revolutionary and radical transition from the religious to the secular, just like Saul, who is believed to have taken on the name Paul after ministering to the Roman proconsul Sergius Paulus (Acts 13:7, 12-13, 43).

It wasn’t just a turning away from his former life as a persecutor of the first Christians – Saul was a name steeped in his Jewish roots, but Paul was a Roman name that emphasised his citizenship.

That change in identity meant that Paul wouldn’t be perceived to the Roman authorities as a Jewish preacher, but a Roman one who had a “transformation ministry”.

Silvoso made a sharp point: “Paul wasn’t just an asset to the church – he was an asset to the community.” His ministry largely involved partnering with marketplace Christians, such as Aquila and Priscilla, and equipping them to take the Gospel to the rest of the community in tangible ways.

“Don’t try and reel Aquila and Priscilla into the church, go to the marketplace and work with them,” he said.

According to Silvoso, there are four types of Christians in the marketplace.


  • Christians who simply survive in the marketplace
  • Christians who apply biblical principles in the marketplace
  • Christians who operate in the power of the Holy Spirit in the marketplace
  • Christians who transform the marketplace

To make his point, he went on to share a few testimonies of transformative Christians who had the right finish line in mind. One was an ice-cream vendor in Phuket who – starting by praying over the ice-creams she sold – eventually brought 700 people to Christ. Her church has since grown to have over 20,000 members.

“Her scooter became a chariot of fire and her ice-cream cones were like arrows in the hands of a mighty woman!” Silvoso declared with a laugh.

“If you want to see what you’ve never seen, you have to do what you’ve never done.”

The other was a taxi driver named Gregorio Avalos who wanted to transform Argentina, inspired by the teaching of his pastor that to disciple a nation started by discipling a city.

He prayed over his taxi, even anointing it with oil, and began to serve passengers in Barrio Las Flores, where he lived – a city that was also the headquarters for a huge drug cartel.

The right finish line is when what goes on inside four walls once a week begins to happen 24/7 in the marketplace with signs and wonders.

Eventually, Avalos ran for and became the president of his neighbourhood association. God used Avalos’ new position to introduce men of influence to him, enabling the destruction of Barrio Las Flores’ drug bunkers. That meant they were now able to pave the streets and build sewer systems. Soon, they built a new hospital, school and train station.

In this new and safer city, people now felt safe to came out at night. And when evangelist Carlos Anacondia came to preach at a night rally, over 10,000 people came to know Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Saviour.

Silvoso was beaming as he recounted this story. “Today an entire province is being discipled – all because one taxi driver had the right finish line in mind!”

What is needed for Singapore to be an Antioch? It’s for her leaders to choose the right finish line. It’s when what goes on inside four walls once a week begins to happen 24/7 in the marketplace with signs and wonders.

In closing, Silvoso called for a time of prayer.

“Pastors, give the church back to Jesus and God will bring you your Aquilas and Pricillas with whom you will transform the marketplace. Pray: Forgive me for calling it my church – I give it back to you. It’s your church, I am your servant. I humble myself before you.”

“Christians in the marketplace, give your job back to Jesus – give it back to God. Lord Jesus, I hear you knocking at the door of my workplace. I open the door and say, ‘Jesus, come in! I enthrone You.’

Kingdom Invasion 2018 will run until Friday at Singapore Expo Halls 7/8. Night sessions starting from 7:30pm are free, subject to availability of seats. For more details, visit


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“What if the poor are billionaires?”: Heidi Baker asks the Church to feed all who are hungry

by | 14 March 2018, 3:01 PM

“He told me to start this way,” Heidi Baker said in tears, kneeling on the floor. This is how the missionary to Mozambique for the past four decades normally starts her sermons. On her knees, asking for God to breathe His fresh word into her for the moment.

“God is saying that you have bread and water but you are not feeding the hungry and the thirsty – that is why they’re dying.

“When I say I know how hunger feels, I really know what it feels like. But many of you here don’t. Many of you have even lost your appetite.

“Cry out for an appetite!”

Reading from Luke 14 on the Parable of the Great Banquet at Kingdom Invasion 2018, she continued to call for self-examination in the light of a world in both financial and spiritual poverty.

“Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the Kingdom of God. The master of the banquet was angry that there was a lack of hunger from those invited. It angers God when He sees a lack of hunger.

“In the end it was the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame – those from the streets and alleys and roads and country lanes who filled the hall.”

She called forth anyone who wanted to rekindle their appetite for the things of God, and the front of the stage was quickly filled with many, whom she proceeded to lead in prayer.

Then reading from John 6, she exhorted the crowd to remember the words of Jesus that He is the Bread of Life, the bread of God that has come down from Heaven and gives life to the world.

As the Church, we have been given this bread to share with everyone. “It’s time to share, Church, not talk about sharing – but to go and share!” Baker urged.

“Billy Graham knew better than most of us that people were really lost and dying, and the love of God compelled him to go and bring the Bread of Life to them.

““When the Church starts knowing who we are we will start to share – what’s compelling you?”

The Church doesn’t always recognise the poor in our midst; we’ve been duped by those who wear fine clothes and drive nice cars.

But the Church doesn’t always recognise the poor in our midst. In fact, we’ve been duped by those who wear fine clothes and drive nice cars – fooled by the disguises in our first world nations.

“What if the poor are billionaires? As long as they don’t have Jesus they are dying, and you have food!

“It’s time for the Singaporean Church to share again – we need to rise up and go, and never stop going.

“Go as a banker; go as a lawyer, go as a priest or a prophet or football player or scientist. It’s time to feed the hungry and compel the lost to come home again.”

She then shared a story from her ministry in Mozambique. After bringing bread and other refreshments to a church in one of the villages they serve in, her team found themselves being stoned by several villagers who did not share the same faith.

“These men were saying they were going to kill me this time – and I watched as my spiritual son stretched out his arms and took the beating and stoning for me.”

They were able to get away, and even dropped the charges against the ones who had instigated this, but this was Baker’s point: “Some of you are afraid of speaking to people in the street, people at work, people who are not even going to beat you – you’re going to be alive even after you share the Gospel – and you won’t even share bread with them!”

“God wants to open your eyes to what’s possible. Go to the highways and the byways to call the poor and the lost to the master’s banquet. He wants His house to be full.

“Beloved of God, this is not a nice little outreach. It’s every single one of us stopping every day to feed someone bread, and there’s an amazing abundance of His glorious fresh bread.

“Jesus died that we may have water and bread. A Jesus movement starts when we go and love like Jesus.”

Kingdom Invasion 2018 will run until Friday at Singapore Expo Halls 7/8. Night sessions starting from 7:30pm are free, subjected to availability of seats. For more details, visit


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Where in the world are our young missionaries?

by Joey Lam | 21 February 2018, 10:12 PM

It’s becoming somewhat of a perennial question: How can we engage and mobilise millennials for missions, both within the Church and across cultures?

Here’s something my cell member said in one of our discussions about the millennial generation that stayed with me.

‘The highest dropout rate from church happens between the ages 17 to 19. It is the age of enlightenment for young adults. They have a new-found freedom. They realise they can do something else with their time rather than go to church.

“The church leadership keeps thinking that there is something wrong with the programmes they are running. They think their transitional initiatives aren’t good enough, or it’s just the ‘A’ Levels.

“But I have seen those who went to church through the ‘A’ Level period ultimately leave the church; and those who disappeared during the ‘A’ levels come back to church after their exams.

“So it isn’t exams, it isn’t transitions, it isn’t programmes.

“It is about the authenticity of our faith.”

I sat there chewing on his words.

I replied, “But I am heartened that the discourse within the Church body is happening. And the answers are starting to get passed around.”

I said that because I’ve seen with my own two eyes how the Holy Spirit has already started a unity movement across the larger Church in Singapore. He has been blowing us out of our silos, causing individual parts of the body of Christ to interact and work together.

During the GoForth Millennial Influencers Gathering on February 1, 2018, we had four individuals from diverse backgrounds come together to exchange and make sense of the “puzzle pieces” of insight they’d received over the years. I believe their revelations are more valuable than their titles.

In the words of panelist Claire Carter, a young lady who’s been organising mission trips to countries such as India before she was even 20: “The antidote to short-lived excitement is to get us millennials acquainted with the person of God, the exciting character of God, and His heart for His people.

“If we make missions about programmes, we will only see the power of the programmes – instead of the power of God.

“Missions are exciting because God is exciting. Young people need to see that the greatest thing they can be a part of is God’s exciting redemptive mission.”

Claire Carter, the youngest panelist and representative for her generation. (Photo credit: Elliot Ng)

Jason Chua of Burning Hearts House of Prayer, the next youngest on the panel, had this to add: “The way we are raising leaders today is to run good programmes.

“But there is a lack of leaders today who have been raised to first know God and to seek Him. To cultivate a life with God that goes beyond just a Sunday or Saturday affair and is instead, a daily living. And the younger ones need someone older who can model that for them.

You can only reproduce who you are, and you can only reproduce something that you have.

“Because you can only reproduce who you are, and you can only reproduce something that you have. If we as their leaders don’t have that lifestyle, there is no way we can tell a young person to do it. They will never be convinced. They have to experience it with the people who are leading them.

“If we can model that, then young people will catch on the spirit of living that life. You don’t have to try to convince them or make them do missions.

“We need to create a greenhouse that emphasises values rather than methodology.”

Jason Chua of Burning Hearts House of Prayer shares his convictions. (Photo credit: Elliot Ng)

David Tan, director of Wycliffe Bible Translators (Singapore), shared a similar heart for young adults. “You want to engage millennials, you want to challenge them – but you should never lower the bar for them.

“One of the problems in churches today is that there is so much fear that the next generation is going to run away, so we lower the bar. That is dangerous.

“We have to model our faith to them, show them our faith is real. That the cause of missions is worthwhile.

“That is when they will give 10 years, 20 years or even their whole lives to missions.”

David Tan, a seasoned missionary with a heart for millennials. (Photo credit: Elliot Ng)

Dr Goh Wei Leong, co-founder of Healthserve and Singaporean of the Year 2018, had simple but wise advice: “The key to engaging millennials is to build strong relationships with them. Then you will never have to tell them to “Go!” – instead you can say, “Let’s go!”.

“It’s easier to go when there people are coming with me. We are all in this together. When you have a group of friends – the body of Christ – going with you, it’s not just easier – it’s more exciting.

“Sometimes the simple things are important, like coffee. Think coffee, conversations, Christ. I think with that, we build relationships first. Then we get the values in.”

Dr Goh Wei Leong, Singaporean of the Year with a simple love for coffee, conversations and Christ. (Photo credit: Elliot Ng)

During the tea break, I went up to Jason Chua to appreciate him for his sharing. He simply replied, with a nod towards David and Dr Goh: “These are the real heroes.” I knew he was also referring to all who have walked the missions journey ahead of us younger ones.

Besides actively caring for migrant workers in Singapore through his work at Healthserve, Dr Goh also serves on the global team of advisers for Operation Mobilisation. He has been deeply involved in integral missions for years.

David Tan’s decade-long work in the mission field has included translating the Bible into a language that over 1 million people speak. And, by the way, he also has a PhD in Mathematics.

Instead of telling young people to “Go!”, you should say, “Let’s go!”.

Observing this, it’s plain to see that what the Church can and must do with regards to missions in this day and age isn’t really mobilising just the younger ones – but the whole body of Christ, young and old. Everyone has valuable things to bring to the table.

After all, in Biblical terms, everyone alive during the same time was considered to be part of the same generation. And if we can figure out how to tap on the strengths of the two ends of this generation and bring them together, we will then be able to move forward powerfully.

It is not so much about not pouring new wine into old wineskins. It is about offering both old and new wine from the same cellar.

For leaders involved in serving the millennial generation, there will be another GoForth Millennial Influencers Gathering on March 1, 2018, at Bartley Christian Church. Those interested can sign up here.


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