Returning from the fringe series
The same time I went back to my mother’s house I began praying about belonging to a church. I had three requirements for joining a church: Firstly, it should preach Jesus Christ; secondly, I should get along with the leaders, and; thirdly, I should be able to get along with, at least, some of the members.
It was at that time that I met a colleague in The Star who went to Calvary Church in Kuala Lumpur. Lee Cheng (who is now a deputy news editor at the business desk of The Star) knew another church member who knew me from Form Six days. She invited me to attend a Wednesday service and then meet my old friend, William. I went for the service and it was good to see William again. He introduced me to his friends and I thought he had a nice gang of friends. They invited me to Sunday service and I went.
Unlike in other churches, the first Sunday I attended Calvary Church’s service, I felt at home. I didn’t notice the heavy curtains, plush cushioned seats nor the crowded hall. I listened to the message and thought “they preach Christ. That’s good!” Senior Pastor wasn’t at the service but there were some men at the altar (I didn’t know who they were) and I thought if they were leaders they seemed ok, too!
I began attending the services regularly and meeting up with William and his friends, and observing them I realised I could get along with them. So, all three conditions of mine were met in Calvary Church and I settled down there — after I had done some homework to establish this was a recognised Christian denomination and not a cult!
I was slightly skeptical of the charismatic “speaking in tongues” experience but not totally hostile towards it. By now I had seen how our Lord was helping me in unusual ways and so I was open to His leading.
A month after I joined Calvary Church I began praying for the Holy Spirit. I was baptised with the Holy Spirit on Feb 13 as I had my quiet time at home. It was a pleasant experience, being able to sing a chant-like song; it was spiritually edifying.
But, what was significant was that the next day was Valentine’s Day and I didn’t get depressed!
You see, I always felt miserable around Valentine’s Day! That Feb 14 was the first Valentine’s Day in a long time I didn’t get depressed! Only someone who loves you will be able to “see” you as you are and do to make things better for you! I thought it was really so sweet of Him to show me that: to bless me with the baptism of the Holy Spirit on a Feb 13 so that I won’t be depressed over Valentine’s Day!
Of course, I have tripped — only when I disbelieve! And when I find the faith to believe I recover — very quickly!
So, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I think of our Lord Jesus Christ as my Valentine! Frankly, no one has so far measured up — even up to maybe 10% of who He is! He has never disappointed me. I know He loves me and I rest in His affirmation of who I am. As a result my self esteem keeps shooting up, and I don’t feel the need to conform to any one’s expectations of me.
I wish we would all model ourselves after His heart, beginning in small ways. I believe if we have even 10% of His heart, we will be better individuals, girlfriends, boyfriends, wives, husbands, lovers, leaders, infinitely better Christians!
I don’t believe it is sheer coincidence that I am writing about the day I got baptised with the Holy Spirit on an anniversary date! I didn’t plan it; it just happened this way! Maybe, there’s a message here for someone or a few people or all my readers!
Have His Heart! Happy Valentine’s Day!
NEXT FRI: Experiencing the powerful work of the Holy Spirit