To those who knew, I was at work from 8.30am till 1.30am the day before the conference. I was overwhelmed by both school and work and the fatigue was killing me… I broke down in tears. I felt like I was not prepared for the conference because I had many things going on my mind, I am not able to focus on what God has for me. Basically, I was burdened.
I have no idea how I woke up for the conference but I was pumped up for it, thanks to that cup of iced kopi-c? I expected to rest, I expected to cry A LOT.
I think it was the morning session. As I was praying, I felt a rubbish collector driving through my alley (me) and picking up bags of rubbish. I wrestled with Him collecting my rubbish and I felt that these rubbish became part of my identity yet He lovingly nudged me to let go. “we must be willing to come out of our comfort zone and be willing to believe that we serve a supernatural God and in these last days, it is urgent times and God is calling us to arise. Come out of your comfort zone and lay hold of God and His directions for you. Stirring is strong, will you obey or not?” – Ps Edmund Chan
There was a call to those with full time/missions calling and for the first time, I said a louder YES by raising my hands. I thought to myself, maybe I don’t need to raise my hands and God can still see my heart but I raised as an act of surrender. Take me, I said. God, I am scared but I know I am in good hands. Those who had the calling gathered and it was very heartening to see peers also going up to get prayed for. This commitment, seal it (: Sermon was the mandate vs mission and it was a reminder to be rooted in God’s word. I mean like this is really what God has been prompting me to do – be rooted but I felt I have been so busy and burdened, how to even make time? *God slaps* “‘are you ready?’ shouldn’t be the question you ask. ‘Are you rooted?’ should be the question”
Was it during dinner? I was getting food and pastor Ray came up to me and said ‘DTS? I have peace’. Somehow, that was very heartening to know the assurance that someone is praying for me and someone is reaffirming me of that peace. (Thank you!!!)
Night session my heart felt so swollen. It had nothing to do with sermon, it was just my inner thoughts haunting me. I kept seeing myself as an unworthy person. Unworthy of the King of this world to love me and to hold me. Unworthy of His plans in my life and unworthy of His grace. Yet the other part of me replayed God’s faithfulness in my life and I was well reminded of how God wants to renovate this house of mine and build a throne room in me. I sobbed. It felt soooooo goood to be crying, it felt so good to be wrestling. I felt I was in and out of crying and I knelt down. God, I surrender all that I am wrestling. As I was singing “I run into Your arms I run into Your arms…” Pastor Ming held my head and as she was praying, somehow my heart felt light and my burdens were lifted. I don’t have the gift of interpretation to understand tongues but WOW. *heart jiggled* This King REALLY LOVES ME! My heart was at peace! “Surrender is not about giving up but it is melting in and giving in to God’s love and His plans for you” #GDLL
Second day was a reassurance of His providence. I felt God telling me that it is alright and He is enough for me. “How am I going forward when I go back?” I felt God telling me that I should be talking to my parents about my first step to DTS. I felt God reminding me of what Ps Edmund said “picture the situation and rehearse your reaction and response” My parents being non-believers and have never been supportive of my service in church, will be a tough nut to crack. We are not the kind of family who will sit together to share with one another our thoughts and for me to sit down to share with them… aiyoooo God why you like that???? Yet I felt that if I can’t do missions even at home, if I am not able to minister to my close kins, what makes me think that it will be easier out there in the field? Yet I wrestled with the thought of Isaiah 6 on the rejections that people may give. God assured me that He will provide and all I have to do is to try. I think what J said to me was very true – ‘more often than not, it is our fears that are scarier than the rejections and if you try once, it fails, don’t give up. The first time is probably a seed planting for them to think through and allow God to speak.”
Pastor Glad came up to me and said “I have a serious secret to tell you. God really really loves you.” In the course of 2 days, many of my friends did come up to me to give me hugs (God knows I really love hugs) and to tell me that they love me. WAH. Hi God thank you for reassuring me that I am loved not only by You but by my people. I really took a lot of comfort in those words. oh and the crowd that went up for ‘singles prayer’ amused me. Not that I felt the need to go up for prayer. My stand remains the same – In God’s time, #meninitiatewomenrespond.
Day 3 was like oh communion, serve and take photo day. The thing about this conference is that I felt inadequate to serve. I see the fellow interpreters and wow their sign language is really very good. The phobia of signing for sermons that crept in last November was so strong and since then my sign really went downhill and all I wanted to sign was for worship songs. That’s all and even then, I didn’t know every word that is sung. Yet the deaf that I was serving said to me that she loved my worship signing as it has brought her closer to the Lord because of my expressions of love. I really melted. Throughout the conference, random people did come up to me to thank me for serving and mentioned that sign language is very beautiful. Yet part of me is like I think I am doing a very bad job – see, insecurities and self doubt ongoing again. I received a card “your interpretation has improved a lot. Be encouraged to do it faithfully because what you do really pleases God”❤
oh another thing, I went to this conference not wanting to serve in any capacity. Yet, I was thrown as an assistant mentor. AM nothing much to do right, just count my flock during the journey. Yet, I was very encouraged when this girl wrote me a card to thank me for being authentic and for my very expressive and engaging personality. This – I really need to thank God for. Honestly, I hate meeting new people. Honestly, I was dreading to meet the group and to have the need to interact with new people. I know that because of my lack of sleep from day 0 to day 1, my face would be very black and I would sink into my sleepy state. Yet, I HAVE NO IDEA WHY I WAS SO HYPERACTIVE THROUGH THE ENTIRE CONFERENCE EVEN UP TO NOW, I HAVE NOT EVEN NAPPED. Like I was just REALLY happy to be in God’s presence, it was really JOY UNSPEAKABLE. Sorry if I made too much noise but hey. Joyful noise! Please manage expectations of me in regular settings hahahaha!
So I thought okay we are about to leave the conference, let me go to the washroom first. I was in the queue, this girl came out of the cubicle, looked at me and pointed ‘YOU! I NEED TO TALK TO YOU”. omg what?!?!?!?!! We met and she said that she felt she had to tell me this, but if it is really what God wants her to tell me, I will be found alone for her to approach me -that is quite rare cos I am always with people. Incidence 1 – I realized jiejie was in the lobby and she has fear of lifts and so I thought of going to the lobby to look for her. However, she saw I was zombied so she didn’t talk to me. Incidence 2 – Day 2 breakfast, I put my bag at a random table and walked away. She was at that table and thought okay great opportunity… but I sat at another table with my cell girl. Incidence 3 was when she met me in the washroom. Thank God for kidneys. So she said to me ‘I felt that you have grown a lot over the years. I have kinda watched you grow up from the many YMLCs and from YM and yesterday during worship I felt that now you have arrived where God wants you to be.’
I died. I went back to my close friends and OMG WHAT?! I don’t even talk to her. She watched me grow?!!?!?! Why so random? and arrived? Arrived where?! – Hi God, please reveal this area. People have really been encouraging me and telling me I have grown. Honestly I really feel I have. In the past I hated sharing and I hated group time and all those were just superficial sharing. My heart was very guarded with the fear of vulnerability and fear of judgement. Yet now it’s so freeing and I really felt VERY free to worship to my the One my soul adores and speak of His faithfulness in my life.
Someone went up to B to ask if we are still together and if he knows I have full time calling. (HAHAHAH – to those who think it is awkward that we are still friends, chill. I am really fine. I looked at him while he was on stage one service and asked God – God, is there bitterness or unforgiveness that I have with him? Nil I even thanked God for letting me grow SO MUCH through that season. When a relationship fails, there is still the friendship that you can fall back on and that, I am very thankful for. Thank you for loving me even as a friend.) B said ‘I remember very clearly, telling you that I think you have full time calling but you said no, you are supposed to be in the marketplace’. HAHAHAHAHA, God, I am highly amused.
So in conclusion for YMEFLC, it was not so much of the sermons preached but that God really wanted to talk to me and He really wanted to love me. So, I am accepting His love and proclaiming that I am a beautiful princess of the Most High and my security lies solely in Him. (: