Maturing Through Crisis

This Covid-19 pandemic is like a huge reset button that ‘rudely and forcefully’ interrupted our routined lives; without ample warning and without our consent. It’s heavily featured on every country’s news headlines and dashboards. Suddenly, things that once mattered to us don’t really matter anymore.

Every day, we’re forced to evaluate and decide on what are the truly important priorities in life. Our values & convictions are constantly challenged against this backdrop. And just when you think one wave has subsided, another wave sweeps in. Our National Development Minister Lawrence Wong just said on 25 March 2020 that Singapore is only at the “beginning of a very long fight” against Covid-19.

The fight against Covid-19 is not just a collective battle, but an individual and a personal one. Perhaps the greatest revelation during this crisis – one that has eternal value – is not the medical breakthrough for the vaccines, but it’s about you.

Someone once said, “A crisis doesn’t make you. It simply reveals you”. It’s in times of crisis that the true character of a person is revealed. That’s when people will see if you’re ‘walking the talk’. During this Covid-19 crisis, we’ve seen many things – leaders who don’t lead and non-leaders leading the charge; different thoughts and views being expressed; those who live in irrational fear and those who confuse social irresponsibility as ‘faith’.

This is an unprecedented time where almost every activity across the world comes to a standstill. It’s also an opportune time to take stock, slow down and inspect your spiritual foundation and make it right. It’s the mercy of God that He reveals to you what you’re made of on the inside and have built your life upon thus far – on Christ the solid rock or on sinking sand? How much or how little of God is in you? Some of us read and discuss the ‘daily news’ more than the ‘Good News’!

When the church resumes our services and activities, will we come back spiritually stronger? Or will we end up depleted and defeated?

With church services going online, will you backslide because now you’ve no church to go to? Or will you become the church wherever you are? Billy Graham said, “Christians must never forget the little word, ‘Go’.” It’s two-thirds of the word ‘God’, one third of the word ‘Gospel’ and half the word ‘good’. Simply put, it means ‘do something with what’s already been entrusted to you’. If you’ve been hiding in the comforts of the church all these while, it’s time you step up and lead worship at home, and be the ‘pastor’ that preaches with fire and minister to your family and community.

The virus may divide us physically (social distancing), but the Holy Spirit will unite us spiritually. So let us ‘keep in step’ with Him. (Galatians 5:25, TPT). I believe the Lord is taking each of us aside to fine-tune us, to prune and purify us; to set His Church in order before the next wave of revival comes.

When Britain was left alone to face Hitler’s Germany, Winston Churchill gave one of his finest speeches at his country’s moment of greatest need (18 June 1940), just over a month after he took over as Prime Minister. His final paragraph summarised what Britain and the world faced, “The Battle of France is over: the Battle of Britain is about to begin. Upon this battle depends the survival of Christian civilisation. Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this island or lose the war.

“If we can stand up to him, all Europe may be freed and the life of the world may move forward into broad, sunlit uplands. But if we fail, then the whole world, including all that we’ve known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science. Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duty and so bear ourselves that, if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say: This was their finest hour.”

If not for Churchill, we’d probably be speaking German instead of English today.

I’m reminded in this personal journey of faith, that we’re surrounded by ‘so great a cloud of witnesses”’ (Hebrews 12:1-2). What are these witnesses saying to us? I believe they’re saying this, “You’ve read our life stories which were recorded for your learning – the good, the bad and the ugly. Don’t repeat the mistakes. Out-run and out-do us; take it higher, further and deeper!” Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in Me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.” (John 14:12, NLT)

Eventually, the Covid-19 crisis will be over, but would we have learnt what the Lord is showing us; the areas to repent of, to recalibrate and realign? What kind of testimony and legacy will we leave behind? DL Moody said, “Out of 100 men, one will read the Bible, the other 99 will read the Christian.”

Let us resolve in our hearts, to take this time of crisis to mature in the areas that matter most to God, in faith and in wisdom, that when future generations talk about us, they’ll say likewise, “This was their finest hour!


Ps. Kevin Koh

Possessing the City Gates

Cities don’t have walls anymore. We don’t have to pass through massive, guarded gates which are impenetrably barred at night, or in times of danger. People come and go at will, bringing with them their wares and cares. There’s no inspection, no questions asked. There may even be a big ‘Welcome’ sign.

We’d have to go back a millennia or more to fully grasp the importance of walls and gates of the city to the people in Biblical times. What was their purpose then, and what’s their relevance to our lives today? If we fail to understand their meaning, we may inadvertently be leaving ourselves vulnerable and defenseless. This is no time to be caught unawares! We need to increase our vigilance, and ensure our gates are secure.

The first mention of possessing the gates of our enemies came as read more…

Thriving Through The Seasons

In 1 Chronicles 12:32 is a description about the sons of Issachar that we’d do well to emulate – they had understanding of the times and knew what Israel ought to do. We can be swayed by the circumstances and uncertainties of the times we’re living in or we can find answers to these questions ‘What season am I in? What is God doing in my life? How do I respond?’

When we don’t know the season we’re in and what we ought to do, we might wish we’re in someone else’s season, resist what God is doing in our lives or try to get out of His timing. Instead of going through each season victorious, we barely survive because we don’t recognise what the Teacher is trying to teach us. The process of learning and growing can be frustrating read more…

God’s Faithful Witnesses

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is when good men do nothing.” – Edmund Burke

I seldom have people witness to me about their Christian faith, though many have confessed their faith after I initiated a conversation. It’s highly true that the vast majority of Bible-believing Christians don’t witness to others about their faith in Christ. We may invite our friends to church, but the majority don’t win others to Christ, and many of us are guilty.

Our Lord Jesus commissioned each of us to share the Good News and “seek the lost.” He said, “Go and make disciples of all nations”; and “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation” (Matt 28:19; Mark 16:15).

This is our greatest calling, which is to share His love and read more…

Faith or Fear

As a church, we’re into a full month of increased precautionary measures against the spread of Covid-19. We issued a set of advisories on the first weekend of February, and engaged a cleaning company to do a thorough cleaning and sanitisation of our facilities weekly.

The following week, we cancelled our Toddlers’ classes, all non-urgent meetings of over 50 people, introduced mandatory temperature-taking and weekly live-streaming of our services. We essentially trimmed our gatherings to just our weekend services, and on Feb 15, announced the cancellation of our Kingdom Invasion Conference.

These last four weeks have been intense as we sought to put measures in the church to ensure our members’ safety. For any other organisation, it’d be pretty straightforward. But for a church, there’s always a lingering question as to whether we’re acting in faith or fear.

This is read more…

Betraying God

I was reading the usual passage of Scripture for Holy Communion in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26, “For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you: that the Lord Jesus on the same night in which He was betrayed took bread…”, when my eyes zoomed in on the word ‘betrayed’. Betrayal has to do with being unfaithful in guarding, maintaining or fulfilling the trust given, especially in times of need: it’s to deliver or expose someone to an enemy by treachery or disloyalty.

We find great comfort that, whenever we’re betrayed, we’ve a Saviour who can understand and identify with our pain, even as He was betrayed by His disciple Judas Iscariot, and even Simon Peter who denied Him three times. Yet, that day, in my time of searching my own heart, I found myself asking this question which we seldom ask, “Lord, have I read more…

When God Seems Silent

Upon receiving disappointing results for her first school assessment, my dejected daughter came to ask me, “Why didn’t God answer my prayer and help me in my test?” I immediately shot up an emergency prayer to heaven for inspiration to help me satisfactorily simplify a theological enigma for my 7-year-old.

Since the beginning of this year (2020), my family has been diligently incorporating the daily creed of ‘Praying First for ALL Circumstances.’ Before sleeping each night, we take Communion, recite Psalms 23, 91, and The Lord’s Prayer, and then pray for one another. That’s why I knew I had some solid explaining to do for my little one’s ‘unanswered prayer’ conundrum. 

My first attempt didn’t go down too well. “I think God answers all our prayers in His perfect way, but we’re the ones who see our requests as unanswered.” That read more…

Be Still

It’s amazing how quickly things change. Last month, my daughter woke up to tremors and snow-like ash falling outside her window in the Philippines from a nearby volcano. Meanwhile, the coronavirus erupted too, spewing panic like poisonous ash on unsuspecting populations.

Masks have dawned overnight like sandbags amassed to keep back swollen rivers. Once-teeming cities of millions in China have become ghost towns. Young and old, rich and poor now huddle behind feeble defences, hoping the virus won’t ‘Pompeii’ its way towards them.

The ‘Be still and know’ verse in Ps 46:10 begins with a frightful description of waters roaring, mountains shaking and being carried into the seas. It reads like a modern-day newspaper, and yet breathes hope into these chaotic events.

I found myself yearning to enter a time machine, propelled back to the feet of David. I’ve a read more…

Safe Under God’s Covering

I’ve spent a lot of time being upset about things I couldn’t do anything about and, along with it, the companions of guilt and condemnation aren’t too far away either. And it doesn’t help when you don’t have peace and are unable to enjoy life.

Psalm 5:11 says, ‘But let all those who take refuge and put their trust in You rejoice; let them ever sing and shout for joy, because You make a covering over them and defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You and be in high spirit’. (AMP)

The key to trust is to develop a habit of learning to trust God at all times, in every area of our lives. Christians are called believers, and we should not be behaving like unbelieving believers. Often, we trust our friends, the bank, read more…

Not All Is Well

As we celebrate Chinese New Year, there are so many things to give thanks for. We thank God for the family that He has given us, the roof over our heads, the jobs that supply our needs, the community that we’ve planted ourselves in. Yet, for everyone who has, there are many other who have not. 

Perhaps rightly, as we celebrate a festival that’s all about abundance and prosperity, we should consider especially those who are in a place of lack. What can be sadder than to return home on Chinese New Year’s Eve to an empty house? Or to look around the reunion table, and see an seat empty that should’ve been filled. Or perhaps to be found under an ever-looming shadow of depression. While some are celebrating, others are shackled to their struggles inwardly. 

Genesis 34 is a read more…

Failing Forward

I know – Failing Forward isn’t a very exciting nor inspiring title to kick off a New Year’s blog. We’ve not even crossed the first month of the new year and we’re talking about ‘failing?’

People look forward to a new year because it presents an opportunity to start afresh on a positive note, a new beginning, much like a ‘reset’ button. Besides, this year isn’t just another new year. It’s the turn of a new decade. It’s the year of moving forward with a ‘20/20 vision’, filled with expectations of what the Lord is going to do.

I started this year experiencing quite the opposite. Things started ‘going south’ as each day passed. The things which I normally do well started to turn on me – I messed up a simple family lunch reservation, used the wrong choice of read more…

The Shaking, The Sifting & The Shaping

Let me qualify myself from the outset. I’m neither a doomsday prophet who continually spouts dark and foreboding scenarios, nor am I a dominionist who believes that Christians have to take over and monopolise the world before the return of the Lord Jesus.

I’m simply a disciple who wholeheartedly believes all that Jesus Christ taught, warned, and promised – and since spiritual revelation requires participation to be fruitful, I desire to be a spiritually-effective participant in what God is doing in the world these days.

Not surprisingly, 2020 has already begun choppily with riots in Hong Kong, fires in Australia, floods in Indonesia, the U.S. airstrike which killed an Iranian general in Baghdad, and the tragic air crash which killed 176 innocent passengers caught in the crossfire of a retaliatory Iranian missile.

According to End Times expert Michael Snyder, it read more…

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