Saturday, 29 June 2019
“A need does not constitute a call. Without proper guidance, many well-meaning Christians see every need in their church as a divine call for them to respond.”
When I read these words today, I recall how I had suffered. In 2001, I was a new Christian. I wanted to know more about God through studying the Word and teaching primary school kids in Sunday School.
At the same time, I was a new teacher trying to meet the demands of my job as a childcare teacher. Throughout the week, I had to prepare lesson plans for my primary school kids in Sunday School as well as my pre-school kids at the childcare centre. I also attended night classes to prepare for my exams (Early Childhood Education).
Life was quite tough. I had no domestic help. My children were aged 17, 14 and 9. I often dozed off on my way to work.
One day, I was so stressed that I ‘snapped’ at God when He whispered a word into my ear: Joy. My response was immediate: What joy are You talking about??? I AM SO TIRED!!!
I started asking questions like: Am I doing things with my own strength? Is it because I don’t have the Holy Spirit in me? Did I take on too much? Can I let go of some things? Why am I struggling? The Bible says that the joy of the Lord is our strength. What kind of joy is it? How come I cannot feel it? My questions were endless. Everybody around me seemed to expect me to do more but I couldn’t cope.
In 2004, I was diagnosed with cervical spondylosis. According to https://mayoclinic.org cervical spondylosis is an age-related wear and tear affecting the spinal disks in the neck. As the disks dehydrate and shrink, signs of osteoarthritis develop, including bony projections along the edges of bones (bone spurs). Cervical spondylosis is very common and worsens with age.
Let me ‘fast forward’ to 2019, I thank God that the condition of my neck bones had not worsened. Sometimes, I do feel some minor aches here and there (at the neck and shoulders) when I’m tired.
I have learned to lean on God for strength and wisdom. If I cannot do, I cannot do. I stopped pressurizing myself.
I have also learned to pray and ask God to help me in making decisions and choices. After all, my life belongs to Him and I believe that I am working for the Lord and not for men. The joy of the Lord has become my strength. I got it! Yes, I’ve got it!
Dear Father God
I know that many of my brothers and sisters in Christ are struggling with their work in the secular world as well as their voluntary work in church. Help us to embrace the ‘joy of the Lord’ at all times as we continue to do our best for You and give our all to You. We know that all men will see our good works and praise You. We thank You that You give us vision and wisdom. We thank You for guiding us every step of the way. We trust that You will not let us stumble or fall. You will always go before us wherever You send us. And You will always be working with us, in us and through us, to bring glory to Your Name. Not only are You beside us, You are behind us – our Rear Guard, who never sleep nor slumber. You are our lamp and light as we seek to do Your will with a pure heart and a steadfast spirit.
We look to You for vision and victory, hope and healing, love and life in abundance. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!
Lam Yee Ling