31 May, Sunday — When all around you…

Pentecost Sunday

Acts 2:1-11
1 Cor 12:3-7,12-13
Jn 20:19-23

“Peace be with you”

This has been a special season for me. I have shared about how we made it back from Italy in the nick of time; how we have been on a ‘circuit breaker’ since early April. In two days’ time, this situation will be gradually eased with a ‘safe reopening’ of certain businesses and services. As I look back at this two-month window where I have been absolutely blessed by God, I am beginning to emerge with a new-found understanding of my purpose in His vineyard.

Just two weeks ago, I had been called upon to help out on two projects for my centre. Both are similar in nature, but both journeys for me couldn’t have been more different. They helped me realise that perhaps my calling does not involve my musical or vocal abilities. While I had occasion to record a short clip on the violin, I was a mere contributor. The project that gave me more satisfaction was one which involved coordination across different ministries, and which truly needed God’s guiding hand. As I reflected on both journeys, I found a quiet peace within, in spite of all the attendant frustrations that came with coordinating things. From emails to WhatsApp calls, organising recordings and teaching others how to upload, I actually found contentment; and a peace which gave me courage to take on something else.

The call came when I was chatting with a friend one evening. This new journey I am embarking on involves mentoring six young staff for his company because he is struggling with getting the best out of them. My topic — ‘Failing Forward’. The premise is that no one is able to fail forward without first understanding what his/her own fears are, how to deal with them, and how to seek support from a group who are in the same boat. Sound familiar? In the case of the apostles, it was the Holy Spirit that filled them with the courage, blotted out their fears, and sent them out into the world to proclaim the Word.

It was during this lockdown where this very ministry held its first-ever Zoom meeting, involving all our contributors — well, those who could make it at least. That, for me, demonstrated the power of faith, and of how God blesses all of us in ministry, as long as we set our sights firmly on Him. Never before has such a gathering been done and I hope it becomes a ‘tradition’ of sorts. It was also a few weeks ago, early on in this lockdown, someone said this, “If it is God’s work, it should be as easy as taking a breath.”

Brothers and sisters, Easter has come and gone. Most of us have not received Jesus in physical form for nearly two months. And no one knows for how long more these safe distancing measures will continue to be in place, preventing us from congregating in church. I encourage all of us to actually look around within our own ‘upper room’ — in our hearts, in our ministries, in our homes. Look into the places we have neglected or shut out in the name of our careers, the stresses of daily life. Then ask God to bring His spirit into that area of your life and see what He reveals.  

(Today’s Oxygen by Desmond Soon)

Prayer: Lord, help us in our hour of need, when all seems lost, broken and hopeless, show us your way and the path to your glory in all those around us.

Thanksgiving:  We thank you dear Lord, for being our beacon of hope in these despairing times. We thank you for the gift of all those who sacrifice much for us.

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