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25 October 2020 (Pastoral Page) PUT YOUR HOPE IN GOD

By Asst Ps Lai Keet Keong

“A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering wick He will not snuff out. In faithfulness He will bring forth justice; He will not falter or be discouraged till He establishes justice on earth. In His teachings the islands will put their hope.”

(Isaiah 42:3-4)

Some people enjoy fixing things. A friend once shared that he felt excited when some things broke down at home. He would look forward to tearing that thing apart, see how the mechanism works, repair it and make it work again! The experience, he claimed, was simply satisfying.

Yet, there were times when situations in life break down which were not easy to fix. Like broken relationships where angry words were exchanged and impossible to take back; past sins and weaknesses that led to a vicious cycle of frustration and disappointment. Just as broken appliances cannot fix themselves and need an expert who knows how, we need God to repair the brokenness in our lives.

God does not wish for things in our lives to break down. He loves us absolutely and wants the best for us! However, when things do break down, He promised to be there for us.

Sometimes God fixes them by Himself through miracles and divine intervention. God did it for Hagar who was banished from her home. God was there for Elijah who was in so much pain that he pled for death. God came and showed him a better way. God came through for Hannah, whose tears baptized her desperate prayers. Indeed, God is merciful and cares for the brokenhearted.

Other times, God sends help through people around us. Jonathan was there to support David during the lowest point of his life. Titus brought comfort to the Apostle Paul in Macedonia when he was in despair. God can use believers who been through life’s challenges and overcame them by His grace to bring comfort to those in need. Either way, God never fails to be there for us.

I have observed at some of the lowest points of my life, God was there for me. He promised that He is faithful, and there is nothing impossible for Him. Most importantly, He never falter at my troubles. The most sacred moments are times when we bare our hearts to God. Even the silent, wordless pleas are precious in God’s ears. God hears our whispering prayers as well as angry fists raised in dismay, and He never fails to answer them.

My brothers and sisters in Christ, I believe that God has a two-fold call for us today:

1. Will you come before God, acknowledge the broken areas in your life, and ask God to fix them for you? (Psalms 34:17-18). Indeed, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus! (Romans 8:1)

2. Will you ask God to use you to be His vessel of healing, to bind up the brokenhearted and set free those who lived in darkness and bondage? (Isaiah 61:1)

My dear friends, the first call draws us to acknowledge our vulnerability before God. It is normal to feel lonely in our struggles, but please do not give up. Put your hope in God and His higher ways. Learn to seek help from people that God places around you and trust He can turn things around for you!

For those in the second call, if you are willing to be God’s vessels of healing to others, He will divinely bring you into their lives so that you can reach them, care for them and bring healing to their lives. Divine appointments can happen. Let God use you. Sometimes, genuine care and silent presence are more restorative than our spoken words. Will you respond to God today? I pray you will and may His grace encompass you as you avail yourself.

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