As a child, I always wondered what I was good at. I wasn’t a good student and never knew the purpose of studying other than appeasing my parents – something I wasn’t good at doing either.
Over the years, this feeling of being “lost” and having nowhere to go got even more desperate. Soon, I turned to computer games and was quickly hooked. I invested all my time into these games, thinking that by doing so, I could be good at something for once.
However, the consequences of squandering hours on these games kicked in quickly. My grades suffered even more and at times, it started to seem like my parents clearly favoured my studious sister.
Due to the lack of attention, I turned to my school friends. But my friendships were stormy and filled with arguments when things didn’t go my way, and soon I turned away from them too.
Everything was a wreck. There was no one I could turn to and it seemed like I was in this world all alone. There was no purpose in living, not even living to see the next day.
Like any other Singaporean child, tuition was unavoidable with the grades I was attaining in school. Despite the many tuition classes I attended, the best grades I could muster were a mere pass. One day, my mother heard of a tutor who had helped to drastically improve my cousin’s school results and hired him in hopes that he would do the same with mine.
This tutor, G, taught me for a year, and my grades started to improve, though I wouldn’t say I excelled. Soon, G needed to drop some of his students as he needed to focus on his new-found job. So I ended up being passed to another tutor, S.
S was stricter with me and my work as compared to G. Sometimes I would even end up crying in class because of uncompleted homework. But despite her intense tutoring, my grades remained borderline.
One day, a week before Easter, S asked if I’d like to go to church. I declined her politely at first, but upon hearing there would be a drama production, I agreed to go.
On Resurrection Sunday itself, I remember stepping into the hall and being warmly greeted by many people. They spoke to me as though they’d known me for a long time, and I felt very welcomed.
Though I did not know the meaning of the songs we sang during worship, nor the “Jesus” everyone was worshipping, I was moved by a deep sense of peace within that I haven’t felt before. It was also strange, standing in this place I’d never been, to feel like I was home.
When the preacher asked if anyone would like to receive Jesus as their personal Lord and Saviour, I put up my hand. Though I don’t fully know why I did, I followed S as she brought me forward to receive salvation.
During the Sinner’s Prayer, I was overwhelmed with emotion. It felt like someone had unlocked the deepest places of my heart, and now all the bottled up feelings were tumbling out.
The loneliness, the failure, the condemnation, the feeling of unworthiness; they seemed to dissolve in an instant. And all that was left was this feeling of lightness … Of joy.
I went home that day with a changed heart.
When my parents heard that I had embraced Christianity, they objected slightly, but did not stop me from going to church. Soon enough, I had quickly integrated into my new cell group and continued to observe changes in my character and disposition. I knew that the Jesus who had met me on the first day was with me every step of the way.
However, my grades remained the same. I was still failing in most subjects and did not have any interest in anything else besides English lessons.
In the year I had to take my ‘N’ Levels, I was afraid, for I didn’t know what I wanted in life, nor was I good at anything. It was a constant thought and worry in my mind.
One day, the head of the radio ministry in church approached me. He told me I had a nice voice and asked me if I was interested in joining their ministry. Thinking that I had nothing to lose, I agreed. After learning that I was completing secondary school soon, he encouraged me to consider pursuing media studies in a polytechnic.
After our conversation that day, I looked up the course he’d mentioned online and discovered that it really was something I found exciting. This compelled me to study hard for my exams and by the grace of God, I was able to apply for media studies.
I finally found myself enjoying what I was studying, and even excelled in school. Things were finally taking a turn for the better.
Through the radio ministry in church, I was also trained in public speaking, and even took the stage for various church events. It was in this place I found God’s calling for me as His mouthpiece.
One day, my previous tutor S revealed to me that my first tutor, G, had transferred me to her with only one condition: To bring me to church. My life had always been part of a divine plan.
Looking back, I realised that through knowing Jesus, I’d found my calling, confidence and most importantly, my first love. My thoughts and worries about my life were never unheard. Jesus … the name I was once unfamiliar with, now a name I call upon every day.
Of course, my journey is far from over. There are still many areas that I struggle in. However, I now live victoriously knowing that He has died and overcome the world (Matthew 16:33).
This is a submission from a participant of our Greater Love Giveaway.