“A Chinese Christian”, evidently a doctor, reflects on his insightful meditation after a hard day’s work, physically, mentally and spiritually tired. It was an uplifting experience which we can share, personally experience and benefit from, provided one makes the time and effort.
‘… ONE Sunday evening I visited a patient in the Sepoy Lines Maternity Hospital and as I arrived there before time, I waited outside the compound which is a part of an old cemetery.
While looking around I saw various magnificent buildings – King Edward VII College of Medicine, the General Hospital, behind which is the Prison; just in front of me, I saw the Cathedral with its spires towering high in the sky, and dimly in the distance, I saw the wharves crowded with coolies who were still loading a steamer with coal. With such a magnificent view and cool surroundings, I lost myself in a dream (or imagination!)
I saw my Lord Jesus Christ coming towards me and going down to those graves while the words He told Martha at the loss of her brother Lazarus flashed through my mind. “I am the resurrection and the life; He that believes in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live!”
I recalled those words, “O grave where is thy victory? O death where is thy sting?” Then I saw Him entering the Maternity Hospital and laying His hand on those newly born babies saying, “Suffer the little children to come unto me; forbid them not for of such is the Kingdom of God” and also “Whosoever shall receive one of such little children in My name, receiveth Me.” Following Him, I went into the Hospital where He blessed the sick and comforted them saying, “Come unto me for I will make thee whole.” To the doctors and nurses He said, “Well done, for inasmuch as ye do this unto the least of them ye are doing it unto Me.”
Coming out He went towards the Medical College and blessed the professors and students who spent their time and energy in studying and finding the cause of diseases and their cure. It reminded me of the occasion when He saw a child born blind and was asked by His disciples, “Who did sin, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents; but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.” Then He went to the Prison where men and women were confined within its walls – some due to their moral weakness and others to their ignorance of the law. He comforted them saying, “I judge you not, for I come not to judge the world, but to save for the world.” “Come unto Me, though your sins be red as blood, I will wash them white as snow.”
Leaving that vicinity He walked towards the Cathedral where He commanded the priests saying, “Feed my lambs, if thou lovest Me!” To the coolies, when He was near them, He invited them,”Come unto Me all ye that are heavy burdened and wearied for I will give you rest.” Knowing that they were denied the Sabbath rest in their struggle for their daily bread, these words of life, which He frequently said, flashed through my mind. “I am the bread of life; he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”
Suddenly I was awakened by the chirping of birds and with fresh memory the real meaning of life dawned upon me. What is life when one views it in an insipid way. Born into this world one has to labour and if underfed one will be physically sick; if morally weak, one may be landed into prison and yet even so the goal is but the grave.
To those who view life in the Christian way it is beneficial to know that in this world of ours, there are many who have spent years of their precious life in learning the deeper meaning of His love and in some cases have risked their lives in conveying to us the invaluable knowledge they have acquired in their studies. They are the people who possess the unselfish spirit of placing service before self.
Christ himself has taught us to turn our sufferings into joy and from this may we not learn to lend a helping hand wherever needed! Life is made of sorrow and joy, failure and success, trial and triumph. It is from our sufferings that we understand the sufferings of others. — MM, Aug 1935, p.13.
Earnest Lau, the Associate Editor of Methodist Message, is also the Archivist of The Methodist Church in Singapore.