Friday, April 24, 2009

Balingian Mission Trip

Sharing by Doong Su Lyn. Posted by Peter Yong. Article distributed by Wendy Tiong.

Good morning Brothers and Sisters. My name is Su Lyn and I came to Miri last September to work here. Being a new face here, even until today, I want to share many instances after church service where people still come up to me saying, “Hello sister, are you new here?” Brothers and Sisters, I am not that new anymore to church. I have been with GMC for about 4 months now. And I am here today to share my testimony on the Balingian Mission trip.

I moved to Miri about 7 months ago and having to adjust myself to this unfamiliar new place, new work and new people, I was lost in the transition stage and was excited to try everything and meet everyone. To add matters worst, my faith was slowly taking a backseat and I feel myself being further and further away from God and I never have time for Him. I rejected many invites to church events and cell groups and I wasn’t attending church regularly. The Bible was kept safely in my drawer and I only bring it out on Sunday mornings. Although, my life was pretty settled already by the 2nd month, I realized that I felt empty inside me. Going to church to worship every Sunday morning wasn’t the same as before and it was like a routine. I will come to church and sing the songs without much conviction; I stared blankly at the cross and couldn’t care to really listen to the sermon preached.

That went on for weeks but one thing that touched me was during the sharings of the mission trips in church (like what we have today). I will look at the slides and pictures put up there and listen to the stories of those who have went. To tell you the truth, my eyes are teary and I feel really guilty and sinful. And when I look and listen to their sharings, I always asked myself this, “Why is it that others can go but not me?” and I thought “ How nice it is if God can use me” since I have most of my weekends free anyway. And at the end of the service, I will leave church feeling very disappointed with myself and asked God to strengthen me in my faith again week after week.

One day at work, I was approached by Sister Wendy and Sis Grace and they asked me if I was available on the weekend of the trip. I was hesitant and rejected their offer to join the team as I had initial plans already. Besides, I thought to myself “I am still so new. How am I going to contribute to the team?” plus I don’t know anyone from the team except the two. However, the trip was never off my head completely and occasionally, I do think of the possibility of going to Balingian.

And then came one morning when I was in office and I suddenly have the urge to register for the trip. I don’t know how but somehow a voice just tells me that I should go this time. Like how I shared with my team during the mission, I said its like a ‘calling’ and they laughed when I said it.

I told Sister Wendy and she just nice arranged everything for me. Looking back now, what really amazed me was that I never for a single second at that time thought about how the condition of the place will be, how we will be getting there, who will be going, what we will be doing there and etc. I just wanted to go and that was it!
I never regretted my decision of going as this Balingian mission trip was a time of many firsts for me. It was first time going to a Rumah Panjang in Sarawak, first time bathing in sarong under the rain, first time in a sampan ride, first time eating some weird food (siput, pucuk, snake), first time meeting the rest of the mission team and the best of all, it was my first mission trip ever!

I felt so blessed that the team has supported and took care of me through out the trip and I was really touched by the villagers kindness. The children there were all so amazing and how they live their lives with that kind of innocence and simplicity is just makes me want to give thanks for all the things that I have in life. I could also feel God’s presence with us during that time and how he has used me in the team and brought me back closer to Him.

Brothers and Sisters, from sitting there on the bench and listening to the sharings on Sundays, I have got up from that bench and went ahead to do mission and the experience has brought me back to Him. I pray that each one of you would feel the same too and take one step of faith.

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