I was searching for love when I found my destiny
Fong Mei Ting // May 14, 2019, 6:40 pm
I was the top scorer for PSLE in primary school.
I went to good schools and scored 4 As for my A-Levels. I was a well-behaved youth. Everyone, including my close friends, thought I came from a loving and nurturing family. But the truth is, my family members were hardly present during my teenage years.
My parents separated and eventually divorced when I was 11 years old. At that age, I did not really know what was happening, except that my mother left the family and never came home. Since that time I’ve always had to take care of myself. I would come home from school myself, buy food for myself. I was the one who mended my school uniform whenever the buttons came off.
I have an elder sister who is 3 years older than me, but she was hardly at home as she spent most of her time out with her friends. My father was always working as our family’s financial situation was not that good then. Every day after school, I went home to an empty house. At that time, I yearned for love from my family. Whenever I saw my friends with their families, I would ask myself, why can’t I be like them?
Because of the lack of love from my family, I ended up looking for love and placing my hope in the wrong people.
As a young adult, I met several wrong people and I was hurt over and over and again. I was approaching despair when my long-time friend from school invited me to the Alpha course. I had wanted to know more people then and thought why not? So I went.
I attended 12 sessions of the course. After each session, bit by bit, I started to experience a peace that I had never felt before. I experienced the love that I yearned for and I knew it was love that came from Jesus, who loves us and died on the cross for our sins. At the end of the Alpha course, I decided to ask Jesus to come into my life as Lord and Saviour. I became a Christian.
I was baptised on 18 Dec 2005, a few years after I accepted Christ.
My journey with God, however, did not quite take off then.
For a long time, I was a lukewarm Christian who hardly touched the Bible during the week. I continued to look for love elsewhere and did not place my hope in God. In 2017, because I was betrayed by someone who I really trusted, I lost all hope and wanted to run away.
But somehow I ran to God. I asked Him to help me and bring me somewhere. I cried to Him every day.
During one church service, I received a prompting to respond to the altar call. I went forward for prayer. It was then that I saw a vision and heard clearly: “Go out and be the light to the world.” A few days later, an opportunity to teach in a refugee school came up. I sensed that this was from God, so I packed my bag and went to Malaysia.
I saw a vision and heard clearly: “Go out and be the light to the world.”
It was tough initially as I didn’t know anyone there and was unfamiliar with the environment. I was put in charge of a class of 22 teenagers aged between 13 to 17 years old as the form teacher.
Without any proper curriculum and having no prior teaching experience, it was a struggle for me. The boys were not easy to manage and there were all sorts of issues like fighting, lying, rowdiness and disrespect. On top of that, their understanding of English was very poor, so communication was difficult.
Every day I thought of giving up and going home. But God gave me strength. I had no one to go to except God, and He gave me wisdom. Gradually, I got the hang of teaching and was able to manage the class because He had granted me favour. Soon, I started to make many friends and began to enjoy living in Malaysia.
In the second month in Malaysia, I stopped counting down to the day I could go back to Singapore.
Instead, I started to draw closer to the students as I started to know them and their families better. I also began to open up to them and shared my testimony, including how I came to know God, who He is and how He is present in my life.
As I began to love these students God had placed in my care, I too encountered the love from our loving Father. I was healed. I also experienced the joy of witnessing the changes in my students.
It was then, I finally understood what God meant when He said “Go out and be the light to the world”. He has used me to reach out and touch the hearts of the students.
Eventually, I spent 6 months in Malaysia.
These 6 months were the best time of my life. I grew so much closer to God and I am no longer the lukewarm Christian I used to be. It was during these 6 months that I became convicted of God’s calling for me.
James 1:27 says “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”
I will continue to follow Jesus and live the life that God has called me to – to use my life experiences to help those in need. I thank God for giving me this life, including everything that has happened in it.
Now, I live every day with love and hope as I know I now have eternal life with my Lord and Saviour.
The author’s name has been changed for confidentiality.
THINK + TALK
- What are you chasing in this life?
- If you achieve it, how do you think your life would change? Would you be truly satisfied?
- Would you consider Jesus? He offers real and eternal life.