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 (Manna 22: Indifferent Neighbors)
I Will Seek Out the Lost
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I came from a town called Sitiawan, in the state of Perak, Malaysia. I was baptized into the Lord when I was eight, and at that time, as there were no religious education (RE) classes, I did not receive any formal RE training. In the mid-seventies, I moved to Singapore to work. It was here that I met my husband, whom my relatives introduced to me. Although he was not a member of our church, I agreed to marry him. I thought then that as long as it was made clear from the beginning that I could have freedom to worship and that he would not interfere with my beliefs, I would be able to uphold my faith. Although I was not marrying someone within the faith, I resolved that I would not be one of the lost sheep.

In the early days of our marriage, I kept to my resolution and attended church services regularly, but as time passed, the frequency became less and this marked the start of my decline in faith. Thinking back, there were a number of factors of why this happened. My husband did not object to my church attendance, nor did my mother-in-law, who was then a practicing Buddhist, stop me. The factors lay within myself. First, we moved to a place further away from the church and transportation was not that convenient. At home, I found it inconvenient to pray in the spirit, and I was only able to pray in silence. After I became a mother, I had even less time for God. With a young family, I had to supplement my husband's income by taking up sewing for others. Gradually, the years passed and God was no longer a part of my life. I became one of His lost sheep.

For ten years I led a life without God, until the day His amazing grace sought me and brought me back to the fold again. In the late eighties, my two sons were still young and as one of them started attending school, I began to notice that he had a very irrational temperament. He would throw terrible tantrums and at times even threaten to harm himself. He would not listen to any one of us. His father, his grandmother, and I were at a loss, not knowing how to tackle the problem. Gradually, the situation became progressively worse, to the extent that we became frightened of what he might do to himself and to us.

It was during this difficult period of my life that I began to realize that only God had the power to help my son and if I did not turn to Him, the problem would become worse as time passed. It seemed that my gracious heavenly Father also acted to remind me of His presence. For example, on two to three occasions, I had the same recurring dream. I dreamed of the church at Telok Kurau (in Singapore) where I could see the congregation praying. I tried to walk towards the church but as much as I tried, I could never reach it. In the dream, I could see myself becoming more and more anxious. On Saturday afternoons, as I was working, I would find myself thinking of the Sabbath services being conducted at church. And sometimes when I looked at my children, I began to develop a sense of guilt. I brought them to this world, and yet I had not brought them to know God. They would never have a part in the salvation of God. With all this going on around in my mind, I decided to return to God. I discussed the matter with my husband, who agreed that my two children and I could attend church services.

So after ten years of absence, I returned to church again. I thank God that this time, I was able to bring my sons with me. As we started attending services, my son's temperament gradually improved. I was able to teach him using the words of God and he would listen. Through religious education, he learned more about God and began to think about baptism. This was reinforced by a dream he had, where he saw an angel talking to members of the congregation, but when the angel reached him, the angel waved its arms and suddenly, my son found himself in pitch darkness. He felt as if he did not belong to the congregation, that he was not part of them. That was why the angel shunned him. This prompted him to request to be baptized. We therefore decided to seek the permission of his father and grandmother. Thank God, they did not object. But apparently, the devil did.

The evening before they were to be baptized, my two sons were chatting. All of a sudden, one of them heard an eerie and frightening sound, like rustling of feet, behind him. As he turned around, he saw a pair of legs on the floor, rubbing against a nearby chair. The sight really frightened him but did not deter him from wanting to be baptized.

The following morning, by the grace of God, my two sons received baptism and entered the true fold. Now they too have the hope of eternal life. Not only this, but in July 1992, during one of the weekly prayer sessions of the youth class, my son received the Holy Spirit. I truly praise and thank our heavenly Father for His amazing grace upon me and my family.

In Ezekiel 34:11, 16, God says: "Indeed I Myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out... I will seek what was lost and bring back what was driven away."

In my case, this is what He has done. I had forgotten Him, yet He did not forget me, and He took it upon Himself to seek for me. All glory and thanks be to Him.

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Publisher: True Jesus Church