WHEN I WAS ASKED to write an article about our country’s National Day for the August issue of Methodist Message, I honestly did not have a clue what I was supposed to write about. I am not the most patriotic citizen you could find, and to me, the only thing that I like about Singapore is the food here!
However, over the past few weeks, God has revealed to me much more about our nation and my exact purpose as a Christian here in this country.
I was recently called up to serve Singapore as a full-time National Serviceman. Personally I was not mentally and physically prepared for this experience.
Being thrown into army life so suddenly was quite challenging for me, as I was unaccustomed to the new lifestyle that I had to adopt. The environment in the army did not offer much help either, as the culture there made it difficult for me as a believer to stay strong in my faith.
However, as time passed, I became more comfortable with my army mates. I am thankful that despite their penchant for using rough language and crude jokes, I am able to love them through the eyes of God and not through my own human perspective, because of what Jesus did for all of us.
While in camp during NS, God revealed to me many individuals that He wants to reach out to through me. A friend once told me that one of the most powerful abilities that God has given us as Christians is the ability to intercede for others. Throughout this time, God has given me countless opportunities to intercede for my platoon mates. Despite the injuries or family problems that they suffer, I believe God has not forgotten them and that He still has a heart for them!
I also believe that the power of intercession goes far beyond just praying for friends. We, as a Christian community, must gather and intercede for our nation. “If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
As we celebrate Singapore’s 47th birthday, I pray that as a Christian community, we will not just love our nation, but we would act on that love and begin to spread God’s love throughout the nation.
For it was Jesus who first loved us, with so much love flowing like endless streams of water into our empty vessels, that we may be able to share God’s love in everything we do, be it serving or leading in our ministries. “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.” 1 John 4:7