Everyday is an adventure

We’ve been in Uganda a little more than two months now.   We had our fair share of stressful and unique experiences.  We are adjusting, adapting and at times enjoying the way life is like in Africa.  Some of our worst moments is the car broke down next to the street market and we don’t know what to do.  Or the many turns that we needed to take in order to obtain a work visa.  The process which was supposed to be simple is never simple.

At the same time, there are many things we enjoyed being in Uganda.  For one, the pace of life is slower than in Singapore.   This is probably why I blogged more now than the previous few years.

There are many transitions we are adjusting.  From learning how to top up my phone (you can buy scratch cards at any store) to learning how to drive precariously along mud roads littered with potholes, I realized that every day is an adventure.

And an adventure it certainly is.

When we got married, a friend of a friend made a video of how God brought us together.  At the end of the video, I said that this was the beginning of an adventure and not the end.  That was almost two years ago.  Two years ago, I would never imagine myself teaching at a Bible school with Wai Jia.  I would never imagine going to Africa.

Though we are teachers I believe this period of our lives in Uganda we are also students.  Students of God’s Words and His Ways.  We are learning what it means to be good disciples of Jesus Christ.  What good fruit looks like in Uganda, a land that is fertile but yet filled with poverty.

Above all, we learn to depend on God.  A few weeks ago, we attended a wedding introduction hours away in the villages.  The wedding introduction is where the bride and the groom’s family and tribes come together.   By the time we left it was at night.  The drive back home was an unforgettable experience.  The road had no streetlights, with cars and motorcycles going every conceivable way and pedestrians crossing the road (did I mention it was in the dark?).  There are no street names and I am still new to driving around Kampala.  But by God’s Grace and protection we were back home safe and sound.

 

uganda-traditional-dress

This is the traditional Ugandan wear: Gomesi for Wai Jia and Kanzu for me.  The man wears a suit jacket over the kanzu.  I didn’t wear one during the picture because it was too hot under the sun.

 

Praise God!

Worship in Spirit and truth

A few people asked us why Uganda given that Uganda is Christianized. Since the 1800s, Christian missionaries have been to Uganda to share the gospel. If you asked most of the locals their religion, they will call themselves Christians. So why we are here if most of Uganda is already reached?

On our recce trip to Uganda back in February, I stumbled upon the local news that in Northern Uganda there is a cult that uses both the Bible and Quran. This article made me realized that in Uganda the Truth is not being proclaimed. I immediately remembered what Jesus said when he spoke with the Samaritan woman at the well. He said that one day people will worship in Truth and in Spirit.

This is the purpose of us coming to Uganda. We desire Ugandans to worship in Spirit and truth.

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.John 4:21-24 (NKJV)

For the past two months we’ve been teaching in the Bible school.  The school is nothing more than a big house with a tiny light bulb dangling in the center of one room. There’s no hot water and they cooked with charcoal. Power outage is common and our computer class is often cancelled because of that.

Despite the simple utilities, the students have a hunger to learn. They desire to learn the Bible and learn how to use computer. This is very motivating for Wai Jia and me. God brought us here from Singapore. We sacrificed to come. Others supported us with their hard earn money. The opportunity is here and we need to take advantage of it. We need to invest and invest fully.

Our job is to impart and to build them up so that they can go to Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi and beyond to teach others how to worship Jesus in truth and in Spirit. This is our desire and our hope. We are investing in the Kingdom of God and as Paul said, so that every man (and woman) will be mature in Christ (Colossians 1:28 ESV).

Speaking to a number of missionaries in Uganda, they told us when it comes to working the Muslims are more trustworthy than Christians. They also said even though many called themselves Christians, but those who truly are following Jesus will called themselves born again.

I believe that those who are truly transformed by Jesus through the Holy Spirit will never be the same. I believe that those who are sons and daughters of the Kingdom will work with integrity and honesty. I believe that Uganda and other nations need Jesus Christ.

Even self proclaimed atheist, Matthew Parris, an columnist for The Times, recognized the redeeming power of Jesus Christ in Africa. He wrote an article, As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God, on The Times a few years ago.  In order to access the source,  you need a subscription.  However, I found someone pasted the article and posted on The Richard Dawkins Foundation site.

The Most Important Year in a Man’s Life

Wai Jia and I brought a number of books to Uganda. One of them is Most Important Year in a Woman’s Life, The/The Most Important Year in a Man’s Life by Robert and Bobbie Wolgemuth. The whole premise of this book is to emphasize the first year of marriage as the most important investment for the couple. This is actually two books, one for the groom and one for the bride. Even though we are married for almost two years now, we still find this book highly relevant and beneficial for our marriage.

One of my friends are getting married next month. I quoted this from the book to encourage him to spend the first year to focus on his wife:

It’s often assumed that marriages fail because a lack of investment – time, effort, focus, and intentionality. That’s true, but only partially.

Mark and I have talked with countless couples whose marriages are flailing – or failing. Many are more than willing to work at it, and work sacrificially. As a matter of fact, some of the guys we know who struggle in their marriages are investing exponentially more energy, anxiety, and money trying to keep their marriages alive than couples with healthy marriages will have to invest during their entire lifetimes.

The question must be asked: if these couples are working so hard, why are their marriages failing?

It’s exactly what Jerry found out with ihs successful investment in CompuCalls. It’s all about good timing. Failed marriages are not the result of the lack of investment but the lateness of that investment.

We’ve seen it happen over and over. Men have come to us for help only after their marriages are in deep trouble – in some cases, headed perilously toward divorce. A man may become motivated to work on his marriage when it’s in critical condition. The work and the sacrifices he makes may be nothing short of heroic. But tragically, they come awfully late.

I’ve never met a man who said, “I am choosing to invest poorly” – financially or in marriage. But many men simply do. Their minimal net worth has been the result of neglect. Sheer default.

If a man has recently married, he must not be sent to war or have any other duty laid on him. For one year he is to be free to stay at home and bring happiness to the wife he has married. – Deuteronomy 24:5

I’m pretty sure what you’re thinking. C’mon, be reasonable. I’ve got work to do. If i were to take a whole year off, I’d be fired from my job – and that wouldn’t be good for neither of us.

Don’t worry. I’m not advocating unemployment. Just intentionality. Your job in your first year of marraige is to become an expert on one woman – your wife – and to learn, better than anyone else in the world, how to “bring her happiness.” And the OT advice is to take one year, ONE WHOLE YEAR. A weekend seminar or a great book about marriage will not be enough – not even the standard five-session premarital counselling commitment. There’s no other way to say it: It’s a big investment!

Because you’ve checked “get married” off your life, you may be tempted to pay more attention to other unfinished things, such as going on to graduate school, landing a good job, or staying in shape physically. But now that you’re married, your most important assignment is working on building this relationship with your wife.Page 15-19 – The Most Import Year In A Man’s Life

Wai Jia and I read one chapter at night whenever we are free. We will read one chapter for the husband to be and then one chapter for the wife to be. Another part that really struck me is the average bride spend 150 to 500 hours to prepare for the wedding. Yet, when it comes to marriage maybe ten hours if they are committed (read a marriage book or attend a marriage preparation course).

One of the things I am grateful for and also helped strenghten our marriage is attending the Marriage Preparation Course (MPC). We attended the MPC about one weeks after we started dating. I know and understand that attending Marriage Preparation Course as a date might not sound exciting or enjoyable. But for me it was a great idea since both of us know our relationship is heading toward marriage. It is through the instructors (later became our marriage mentors and good friends) at Marriage Preparation Course we learned how to live with one another.

Writing to your MP (Member of Parliament)

Bible Society published an article on how you can help the Christians getting persecuted in Iraq.

One of the ways to help is to write to your MP (Member of Parliament).  I never written to my MP before.  Sometimes I get stuck with the idea that writing one letter will not make a difference in light of what’s going on.  However, I decided this time I needed to do my part and voice out for the voiceless.

In Canada, you can find who your MP by entering your postal code.

Here’s some tip on how to write to your MP.

This is the letter I sent to my MP.  If you are concerned about the Christians (and also the Yazidis) in Iraq and you are a Canadian, I encourage you to write to your MP as well.


 

Dear _______,

My name is Cliff Tam and I am a Canadian living in your constituent in Mississauga.

I am writing because of the situation regarding the persecution of Christians and Yazidis in Iraq.  I am deeply saddened to see the escalation of violence in Iraq especially after years of fighting.  It is saddening to hear that people are forced to either convert to Islam, pay tax or be killed.  I would like to know if Canada is involved in the humanitarian work of bringing relief and protecting these people from further persecution.

I understand the complexity of operating in the Middle East given the current situation.  At the same time, I also see Canada as one of the leaders in standing up for human rights and freedom of expression- this is what we are known for and this is one of the Canadian values I am proud of.  I hope Canada will be able to participate in some way to bring relief just as our peacekeepers had done in Bosnia and in Rwanda.  

I understand that you have a busy schedule and have many priorities to consider. However, I hope this letter will express my sentiments sufficiently.  

I thank you for your hard work as an MP to represent the Canadians living in Mississauga.  I hope you have a great day and may you find fulfilment in your work to build a better nation for all of us.

Thank you,

Cliff Tam


 

Side note:  We also thought of starting an online petition.  But it turns out that currently in Canada the Parliament only accepts written petition.  Kennedy Stewart is setting a motion for ePetitions.  If you are interested, go to Kennedy’s site and find out more about Motion 428.

Parable of the Good Samaritan in Uganda

Cliff, I think there is a man lying on the road.

Wai Jia said this morning as we were driving to church.

Last month I preached on loving your neighbours using the Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10).  I ended off the sermon describing how I avoided someone who needed help with his car because I was rushing back to church in Canada.

It was deja vu all over again. Except this time it is in Africa.

This is Parable of the Good Samaritan in Uganda.

As I continued driving, I kept thinking it was probably nothing.  Wai Jia probably seeing things.  It wasn’t serious.

But as we drove along, I keep thinking what if this man is dying?

What should we do?
What can we do?

In order to pass my guilt, I asked Wai Jia, what should we do?
If she said no, then I am not responsible for this problem.

She said, ‘I don’t know.’
‘As in no?’ I replied.

There were other reasons to keep driving.  We planned to pick up a friend and her kids and bring them to church.  Wai Jia was preaching and surely she couldn’t be late.  There are enough valid reasons for us to keep going.

After a moment of silence, a moment where both our conscious are pressing us to act, I made a U-turn and drove back. I told Wai Jia that we need to see this man.  Maybe is something.  Maybe is nothing.  But if it is something and we do nothing, clearly I don’t walk my talk.  Then God will hold me accountable.

What will we do?  I don’t know.
What can we do? Not sure.  Let’s take a look first.
What if he is dead?  Who do we call for help? No clue.

It wasn’t too long before we reached back to this man.   He was lying along the ditch with his pants down.   I pulled the car off to the side and walked up to the man.  As I got closer, he turned his head around with his eyes closed as if he was sleeping.  It didn’t took too long to figure out he was drunk.   By now, the sun was scorching.  Glad to see he wasn’t hurt or dying, I put a bottle of water next to him in case he got dehydrated and drove away.

Had he been sick or dying, I really don’t know what we would do.  What if the police found us liable for this man?  What number do we call for police?  Will they even come?  I don’t know.  I never dealt with Ugandan police before.

We might do little.  We might not be able to do much.  But to drive away without a car is like the Priest and the Levite.

As I reflected on this parable, I immediately thought about the lawyer’s heart who started Jesus to speak this parable.   He asked the question ‘who was my neighbour’ because he wanted to justify himself.  I wonder when I asked myself the same question, am I trying to justify myself as well.

We were both glad that the man wasn’t seriously ill.  Later, we told our friend about this incident and she said that it was common for man to get drunk over the weekend.

But he, wanting to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”Luke 10:29 (NKJV)

Real Life Parable of the Good Samaritan in Uganda

Real Life Parable of the Good Samaritan in Uganda

And he said, “He who showed mercy on him.”

Then Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”Luke 10:37 (NKJV)

How can we have free will if God is Soverign?

If God is Soverign, how can we have free will?  If God is in control of everything, doesn’t that mean we really don’t have free will? How do we answer to that? God is Soverign and He is in control of everything.  At the same time, we all have free will and we can make our own decision whether to follow Him or not. Does it sound irrational?  Doesn’t make sense?  Or even a bit absurd? A few weeks ago, when Wai Jia and I was doing our devotions (if you’ve been following my blog posts, you will know that we are going through this book, Oswald Chambers’ So I send You & Workmen of God.) This is how Oswald tackled this question:

When we are born from above we understand what is incomprehensible to human reason – that the predestination of God and our infinitesimal lives are made one and the same by Him. From the standpoint of rationalism that is nonsense; but it is revelation fact. The connection between the election of God and human free will is confusing to our Gentile type of mind, but the connection was an essential element underlying all Hebrew thought. The predestination of God cannot be experienced by individuals of their own free choice; but when we are born again the fact that we do choose what has been predestined of God comes to us as a revelation.

The rationalist says it is absurd to imagine that the purposes of Almighty God are furthered by an individual life, but it is true. God’s predestinations are the voluntary choosing of the sanctified soul.Oswald Chambers’ So I send You & Workmen of God

God’s predestinations are the voluntary choosing of the sanctified soul. This means that when we are born again, our thoughts are the thoughts of Christ. Our decisions, in free will, will choose what God desires. We no longer have the heartbeat of ourselves. God’s heartbeat is in us! When we read that, both Wai Jia and I were in awe. To see that we have an opportunity, a chance, not just partnering up with the Lord but our spirit is so close with the Lord that His desire and our desires join together. Looking back, it is true. Everything about following Jesus. Everything about mission. This is not just the work or the mind of Cliff. This is the work of the Holy Spirit. A few years ago, when I was still in triathlon all my passion, aspiration and desire was to do more races. Train harder. Get faster. It was after laying it all down in a written contract to God that every decision I make I will seek Him first, that the thought of sharing the Gospel become a desire. It started out small. But the desire for mission grew and grew. It grew to a point where I have to make a decision between triathlon or doing mission. Have I looked back and wonder what life would be like if I stick with triathlon?  Sometimes.  But more often than not, I am amaze that by following God and doing His Will I will be in Uganda serving with a Singaporean wife.  That would never cross my mind.  AMEN :)

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.Romans 12:1-2 (NKJV)

How to go

This is taken from Oswald Chambers’ So I send You & Workmen of God.

How to go – Acts 1:8

There is always the danger of starting up false enthusiasm in missionary work. “Oh yes, I will go; where shall I go?” That is like making a false start in a race and having to go back to the starting point. Our Lord’s word go simply means live, and Acts 1:8 describes the going. Jesus did not say to the disciples, go to Jerusalem, go to Judea, go to Samaria, go to the end of the earth, but “You shall be witnesses to Me” in all these places. He undertakes to establish the goings. So many people are obesessed with this idea, “What are you going to do?” I hope none of us are going to do anything; I hope we are going to be what He wants us to be.

In Matthew 28:19, our Lord does not say go into all the world, but “Go therefore and make disciples.” He does the engineering. In Acts 1:8, He does not say you shall receive power, and you shall go into Jerusalem, but “You shall be witnesses to Me.” How the disciples went is described later in the Acts of the Apostles. They went at the point of the sword; persecution arose and scattered them by the providence of God. How to go refers to the personal spiritual character of the missionary, not to the feet of the missionary.Oswald Chambers’ So I send You & Workmen of God

A few questions I am asking myself:

  • what does it mean to be His Witness?
  • What does He wants me to be?

Do you agree with Oswald Chambers’ writing?  Disagree?

As Wai Jia and I read this this morning, she mentioned many asked us why Uganda and what are we going to be doing there.  Perhaps, the better question is what does Jesus wants us to be.

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.Acts 1:8 (NKJV)

Dress to Impress

I remember when I was younger, when I was still in University. As a guy, 90% the time we think about is how to impress girls. What to wear. What to say. How to act. In fact, my friend and I bought this eBook on how to get the girl of our dreams. It is all about how to act like the alpha male in the room. The book gives every detail from what to say, what to wear, what flowers to get, how to play her emotional side to win her heart. We have to dress to impress. Of course, neither of us got our dream girls (or any girls).

Our world is like that. We live to impress others. We build up our CVs or resumes to impress our next potential boss. That’s how the world looks at us. They look at your credentials. Even within the Christian circles we sometimes act like that. Which seminary he goes to and what degree he got. He didn’t have a Masters of Divinity? Clearly he cannot be a pastor.  How big is his church? How many people attending?

A few nights ago, I woke up with this thought. I realized that when God looks at us, he doesn’t look at what we accomplish. Our credentials mean nothing to Him. The world looks at our credentials and evaluate how good we are.  We look at our accomplishments and see whether we are doing good.  For God, He looks at our heart and our obedience to His calling. God looks for our closeness to Him. Union with Christ is way more important than work for Christ. In fact, work itself without union always lead to pride.

It reminds me of the Rich Young Ruler. In the disciples’ (and the world’s) eyes, he is one that God should favor. After all why not? He follows all the commandments. He kept every single one of them. He dressed to impress. But Jesus told him to give up one thing he cannot part with. His possessions.

God is looking for those who are willing to abandon all to follow Him. Like Matthew, the tax collector, when the Lord told him to come, he left and go.

As Jesus passed on from there, He saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.” So he arose and followed Him.Matthew 9:9 (NKJV)

I had a similar experiences with the Rich Young Ruler when I was in Singapore before we came to Uganda. I told Wai Jia (many times) that I will miss Singapore because everything is so efficient and comfortable.  I have to give up a lot!  In Uganda, I will have no air condition, no mobile internet, and no fast food. You would think that I learned this lesson when I left Canada to Singapore. It was a lesson I needed to re-learn. It wasn’t easy. Some people think it is. But it isn’t. But easy or difficult shouldn’t make a difference. The end of the day is whether I obey to Him or not.

So Samuel said:

“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,
As in obeying the voice of the Lord?
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,
And to heed than the fat of rams.1 Samuel 15:22 (NKJV)

Imagine how silly it would be if I choose not to go to Uganda, given that the Lord opened many many doors for us. Imagine how silly it would be if we told everyone, ‘well we decide to stay in Singapore because Cliff cannot miss his fast food.’ It does sound silly.

I believe that there are many in the church like the Rich Younger Ruler. There are those who are great at serving the Lord. They might volunteer in many ministries, tithe regularly and attend every prayer meeting. But their heart is far from God.  They love their things so much that they do not want to give it up. So they ‘bargain’ with God through sacrifice.

The irony is that when God has our heart, the sacrifice will come freely, gladly and with joy. Someone who is filled with the Holy Spirit and a disciple will give and help without reservation.

We are now six weeks into Uganda. What I never expected is the peace we have here. Yesterday, my friend asked me if I am lonely in Uganda. To be honest, no. I feel so joyful and peaceful. Are there challenges? Of course. But Wai Jia and I know that we are here because God sent us. We are here because we are laboring for His Kingdom.  So we labor and we sweat (much like our morning exercise!) but we do it with joy knowing that we are obedient to Him.  We know what we invest in His Kingdom no one can take it away!  Right now, it is silly to think of those apprehension feelings I had back in Singapore. Had I known how I feel in Uganda right now, I would ask God to send us here faster!

At the end of the day, it is our heart, our connection with Jesus and obeying to Him that all it matters. With that, we will flowing out with streams of living water. Everything else is just a show to soothe our ego and show a fading world our credentials.

My Experience with Prophecy

This post will make some Christians feel uncomfortable.  I like to talk about my experiences with prophecy.

To some Christians, especially Evangelicals, they believe that with the death of the Apostles, certain gifts of the Holy Spirit creased.  They are known as Cessationism.   If you are Charismatic, you will believe that the gifts ain’t cease and miracles still happen today (known as Continuationism).   If you Google these terms, you will see so many arguments for and against spiritual gifts.  Some called them a fraud.  Others testified by them.

I came from a Chinese church belonging to the denomiation Christian & Missionary Alliance (C&MA).  This is an Evangelical conservation denomination.  No one practices speaking in tongues or performing miracles (though the founder, A.B. Simpson, believes in divine healing).  When I went to Singapore and serve with OMF, I attended Cornerstone Community Church.  This is a charismatic church where spiritual gifts (speaking in tongues, healing, visions, prophetic) are commonly practice.  As you can imagine, I spent much time evaluate my own theology.

One experience that helped me ease into a Charismatic church was my previous pastor.  During one Bible study he challenged us that Charismatic has a very strong argument for speaking in tongue as an outward expression of Baptism of the Holy Spirit because it is Biblical (Acts 19:1-6).   That helped me open my mind to Charismatic theology.

I am sure if you are in the Christian circle, you will know or heard someone who can perform miracles and later is a fraud or someone who is a miracle worker and later got arrested for some crime.  Yes, I heard of those as well.  But this doesn’t mean that all who are performing miracles through the name of Jesus.

I picked prophecies because of the experience I journeyed while in Singapore.  I can pick other Spiritual gifts to discuss but it will be a very long post to write.

Before I get started, I am going to define what prophetic means to me. If you think about prophets in the Old Testament, they are God’s messenger or mouth piece to speak on God’s behalf.  It is usually to address an immediate situation.

The first time I received a prophetic message was while I was serving in the Telugu service in Cornerstone.  A New Zealand pastor (belongs to Assembly of God), Pastor Alex, was the guest speaker.  Before he started, he gave me a prophetic message.  He envisioned that Wai Jia and I will be travelling all around the world supporting other ministries.  We are like the beams that support a building as it is being constructed.  I never told Pastor Alex what we were doing.  He spoke to me before we got married.  I can confirm that the message was true since then we helped raise funds for Daughters of Cambodia on our wedding, we went to Smokey Mountain to deliver vitamins for kids with Empowering Lives Asia and now we are in Uganda, supporting Cornerstone Missions Africa.

So what does this mean?  Prophecy is not fortune-telling.  This is not something I take it lightly and as always interpret every message against the Bible to see if it stands.  We need to be able to discern correctly that the message is the Lord’s will and not our own.  The Lord speaks for a reason and it is always to glorify Him.  It is to build His Kingdom.  Sometimes we need to time to let the prophecy to fulfill itself.   Lastly, and more importantly, when we are laboring for His Kingdom we need His mind and His direction.   This is not Cliff and Wai Jia’s idea to do the work for Him.  Holy Spirit is in charge of this and we need to seek His guidance.

As you can see from my post, I am a Continuationaist and not a Cessationist.  Personally, in most discussions I’ve read, rarely does anyone mention about 1 Corinthians 14:1.  If Spiritual gifts died when the Apostles died, then why do Paul suggesting the Corinth church to pursue these gifts?

Holy Spirit, Spiritual gifts, how do they work?  I don’t have all the answers as I am still discerning and reading my Bible.  This topic will probably some of my posts in the future.

For now, seek the Holy Spirit.  Stay prayerful.  Be obedience.

Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.1 Corinthians 14:1

Prayer is stupid

Prayer to us is not practical, it is stupid, and until we do see that prayer is stupid, stupid from the ordinary, natural, common sense point of view, we will never pray. But that is what Jesus says He will do. It sounds stupid, but it is a stupidity based on His redemption. The reason that our prayers are not answered is that we are not stupid enough to believe what Jesus says. It is a child, and only a child who has prayer answered; a wise and prudent adult does not (see Matthew 11:25). We have to be as natural as children in our relationship to Jesus Christ and He does His work all the time. Jesus Christ is our Master and He lays down His orders distincly, “therefore pray.”Oswald Chambers – So I send You & Workmen of God

This is a wonderful section we read this morning for our devotion. The quote, therefore pray, is from Matthew 9:38.

It says: Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.

We pray to the Lord of the harvest. There can be many things we pray for. But the emphasis is to the Lord of the harvest. Noticed that it is the Lord of the harvest that sends out the workers. The workers didn’t decide themselves where to go and what to do. The Lord of the harvest have the plans. The workers are to follow from the Lord. This the nature of relationship between the master and his labourers. Or between us, follower of Christ, and the Lord of Lords!

There are many times we want to pray but get distracted. I have many things on the to do list (I have one right now). If I don’t do the work, no one else will. The whole mission project depends on me to get my work done. But this shouldn’t be the case. Oswald Chambers says that prayer is the work. Prayer is not to prepare us for the work.

Prayer is the outcome of our apprehension of the nature of God, the means whereby we assimilate more and more of His mind, and the means whereby He unveils His purposes to us.Oswald Chambers – So I send You & Workmen of God

“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.John 14:12-14 (NKJV)

I remember a long time ago, some of us joked whether Jesus said in John 14 is ever going to happen. Really? I pray anything I want in Jesus name and He will do it for me? This is actually immature thinking. What Jesus implies is that when we are so connected with Jesus, He will do the things we ask because it is the thing He wants to do. The prayer is not what I want but rather what He wants.

Personally, I believe that I need to be as Oswald Chamber says, more stupid. It is not about great ideas I have in my head for His Kingdom. But rather the works He wants me to do for His purpose. And the work is done through prayer.