Pastoral 2015

Testimonies of Church Camp 2015

Sunday, 21 June 2015

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We praise God for last week’s church camp (June 15-19) held at Holiday Inn, Batam, in which 215 members and friends participated. Great spiritual blessings were poured upon the congregation, as they were brought under the exposition of God’s perfect Word. There were repentance, renewal of hearts and rededication of hearts to God’s glory. We thank God for the preachers and the camp organisers who laboured with great devotion to the Lord. Today we publish some of the testimonies; more will be published in the coming weeks.

 

Zacharias Tan

I am a university student, having finished my first year of studies. Coming up to give my testimony is a “test” of my faith in God, because I have to put my trust in God to help me overcome my nervousness and stage fright. I am always afraid that I’ll say something wrong in my testimony. But all glory to God for letting me share my testimony of how good He is to me.

Before I came, I had many questions and worries in my life. I came to the church camp in search of answers or at least to learn something from His Word. I needed some form of assurance. God is good – I learnt more than I expected. So I’ll share 2 examples of how my worries are answered.

First, I have been very disappointed with my university exam results. Although I made detailed study plans and followed them seriously, I did worse than the previous semester. I was so ashamed of myself and I nearly lost hope in God. But I learned through the first and third night messages of this camp that I must patiently endure trials and depend upon God. God’s promises in the Bible never fail and I know that He will guide me according to His plan for me. My results may disappoint me but if God let it happen, it is according to His good will. Indeed, it may be a period of drought for me now, but I must still labour on for my remaining 3 years in university, believing that “rain” (relief) will come.

Second, I have learned how we should serve the Lord when there is increasing pressure from school, family and the world. I asked this question during the Q & A session, “How shall I answer those who discourage me from doing more for God, saying it’s dangerous?” I learnt that my service to the Lord is not up to man to decide, not even myself. I am grateful for the lesson that only God should decide how I ought to live my life and serve Him. And the knowledge of His will comes by prayer and listening more to the Word preached by faithful men. I also learnt that I ought to walk straight with God to know His will, for He will fully let me know His will for me.

There are many more questions for which I have found answers through the messages and the fellowship we had in this camp. Here are briefly some other important learning points that I have gleaned:

  1. Faith is the shield that protects us from the fiery darts of the devil.
  2. In times of doubts and fears, I need to learn to pray more to God. (My doubts and fears were many, and each time after discussing with Pastor, he would pray with me.)
  3. God’s Word is power, from where our faith comes. Through faithful preaching of the Word, we grow spiritually and our faith is strengthened. Pastor taught us on spiritual growth at last year’s youth camp, and now on having faith in God. Truly, there are so many wonderful benefits in being spiritually mature and having a strong faith. We can thus avoid so many troubles and problems that result from being spiritually lethargic and having little faith in God.

Thanks be to God for helping me share my testimony!

 

Moses Lee

Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God” (1 Peter 1:21).

I thank God for this year’s church camp theme that is so apt for my life. The messages constantly reminded me to examine my own faith to ensure it is not a devilish, distorted, desecrating, dishonest and disobedient faith but a joyous, patient, living, working, true and genuine faith – one that wholly depends on God even in times of trials, like the pressures in school from ungodly friends or from our own sinful nature.

In their respective sermons, Pastor and Rev Tan Kian Sing kept using examples of prophets with such great faith. One of them was Moses, whose life was full of testings, and yet he trusted in God so greatly. Truly, whatever is impossible and illogical in the sight of men, is possible to God. So we need to have faith. (Thinking about this, I really do not deserve the name Moses). I really have to look to Jesus and pray more that He will direct my path on this journey of faith and strengthen my faith in the midst of much tribulation.

1 Peter 1:7 says, “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ”. Knowing that I am not alone and with Christ’s very soon return as my motivation to be with Him forever in eternity, I have to grow spiritually, having faith in God.

Of course, I thank God for all the preachers for delivering the Word to us faithfully each day, and also the camp committee and all those who laboured in service for the Lord to ensure that everything went smoothly.

All glory to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!

 

Joey Lim

I truly thank God for the church camp, and for clearing all obstacles for me to attend.

As the hymn goes, ‘Thy Word is like a deep, deep mine; and jewels rich and rare/Are hidden in its mighty depths for every searcher there.’ I am aware that I have not fully grasped all the precious lessons expounded from the Word. Thus, I shall continue to meditate on the truths preached even after I return home, and pray that God will ever continually teach my heart. However, at this time, I would just like to share two lessons that I have learnt during this camp.

Firstly, I learnt the importance of God’s Word in our life and how it is essential in our life of faith, for faith is taking God at His Word. Through the theme messages preached, as well as through godly and edifying fellowship, God has deeply impressed upon my heart that His Word is our only source of true joy, comfort, peace, wisdom and guidance. For instance, Psalm 119:50 – ‘’This is my comfort in my affliction: for thy word hath quickened me’’ – teaches us that the Word is our comfort in our affliction, as well as the means of true revival in our souls.

Secondly, I learnt how to view afflictions in my life. Afflictions, whether great or small, are ordained by God, and He directs them all for His sovereign purposes. Blessed be the Name of the LORD, for ‘’[e]very good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning’’ (James 1:17). I must learn to behold even each and every trial as God’s good and perfect gift for me. To look at trials this way, my vision is removed far from myself (which is all weakness and darkness), and guided upwards to the Father of lights, where I am lost in His goodness and grace. Praise be unto God, who is the Giver of all things! Amen.

 

Julius Del Rosario

Greetings in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ! I thank the Lord for His grace for bringing my wife and I, and my father-in-law to this church camp.

I praise God for the relevant messages being preached by our Pastor, Rev Tan and our own preachers. Hearing and receiving the messages about our faith in God made me realise that I am a man of little faith. But God is gracious and merciful to remind me to put my trust in Him completely, for He will take care of everything.

I don’t know how the Lord wants me to serve Him in the church, I don’t know if the Lord will give us our own child, etc. But one thing is certain concerning what the Lord wants me to do. The Lord wants me to “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

All glory to God!

 

Joy Del Rosario

Greetings!

I praise and thank the Lord for this opportunity to join the church camp and that my father could join us. I thank God for a wonderful fellowship with the brethren. I have been in Gethsemane for 5 years. But I am guilty of not knowing the brethren by their first name. Thank God for such an opportunity as this to get to know many from the church.

A few weeks prior to this church camp, I have been working overtime due to lack of manpower and more responsibilities. Even when I arrived here, my mind was somewhat carried away by the responsibilities I left behind, especially whenever I received emails from my workplace. I cried and prayed to the Lord that He will strengthen my faith, for He will take care of tomorrow and whatever I have left behind. The daily feeding of His word in this church camp constantly reminded me to stay in the presence of the Lord.

James 4:14 says, “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” The question of “what is your life?” really struck me. Indeed, what is my life? Praise God that through the series of messages, I have learned that life ought to be simple. It is to be in full dependence on the Lord. It is to be in full dependence on His promises so that we may walk in faith.

May the Lord continually bless me with a steady heart in Him, that I may be revived and renewed, and serve more for His glory.

All glory to God!

 

Eunice Choy

I want to thank the Lord for enabling me to go for this year’s church camp. Having been unable to go for church camp for the past few years due to work, I was really looking forward to this year’s camp. However, about a week before the camp, I fell while cycling and sustained head injury. The Lord is good to preserve me from more serious harm. I started to have severe back pains while resting at home. The back pains were so unbearable that I thought that I might not be able to go for the camp, and I became disappointed. However, the Lord gave me relief from the pain. I also thank God for comfort and encouragement and prayers from church friends, brothers and sisters in Christ, uncles and aunties, loved ones and family members. Thank you all for your love and concern and much prayers for me. Not forgetting also all your reminders to me to walk slowly and take things slowly, and helping me with my luggage.

Thank God for the messages preached and the precious lessons learnt. Indeed, when trials and difficulties come our way, God gives more grace and thus we can have full faith and confidence in Him. We can depend and rely fully on Him because He is Sovereign and in control of all matters of our life. That is why we need not fear, for God is always there. I pray I will always submit and do God’s will and be obedient to Him. As the song goes, “God never moves without purpose or plan when trying his servant and moulding a man. Give thanks to the Lord though your testing seems long; in darkness he giveth a song.” God has a good and higher purpose, so we can fully trust in Him to take care of us. Romans 8:28 says it best – “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

(more testimonies next week)