A Life Transformed — At Home.

Missions. What comes to mind when you hear this word? Developing nations? Community service? English lessons? Most of the time, we think of stepping out into another world.

What about including those within our own homes into our world?

This is how one simple invitation set off a ripple of blessings.

A Timely Invitation

In March 2018, a Covenanter invited her foreign domestic worker, Iris (not her real name) to attend Covenant’s Good Friday outreach service. It was Iris’ third month of employment in this household and she was rather taken aback by the question. She had been keeping rather to herself and maintained a strict separation between her work and personal affairs. Nevertheless she decided to give church a shot.

Unbeknownst to her employer, she was in a place of deep need at that time. She was struggling with hurt and betrayal and it was difficult to share with anyone.

Joining the worship service brought her comfort, “I was surprised by the warmth and hospitality of the people in church. It was the first time someone asked (me) how I was, hugged me, and even offered to pray for me. I cried out of joy.”

At the end of the service, she decided to fill up the newcomer’s form. Her bewildered employer asked if she was sure about signing up!  

After three days, someone from church got in touch with her and invited her to join the regular church service. She agreed to it and attended the following Sunday’s English service. After the service, a befriender brought her to the Filipino Fellowship where she found a community of her own people.

Iris enjoying the Filipino Fellowship's monthly potbless and celebration of birthdays on 6th Jan 2020

Moment of Surrender

In the months that followed, Iris journeyed with sisters in the fellowship, “I made a lot of new friends and became very happy!” However, she continued to hang out with another set of friends who encouraged her to drown her issues with worldly fun. She felt that there was something wrong about going to church and keeping these old habits at the same time, but she wasn’t ready to give them up.

A particular mentor, Mirzi, gave her a gift with Proverbs 31:25 written on it: “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.” Strength and dignity were qualities she never thought she possessed, “Those words from the Bible moved me deeply.” It was such a needed affirmation that it made her tear and filled her with confidence.

"I was surprised by the warmth and hospitality of the people in church. It was the first time someone asked (me) how I was, hugged me, and even offered to pray for me. I cried out of joy."

As the year 2019 began, Iris found herself no longer enjoying the things she used to do with her old friends. So she stopped hanging out with them and spent more time in church. At this point, she finally decided  to completely surrender her life to God. “I felt an overwhelming sense of grace,” she described that moment of surrender. She got baptised a few months after that.

A New Life

Life has taken on a new meaning for Iris, “I used to go to my room and cry to myself when I have a problem. But now I cry out to God. I no longer feel alone. I can feel God’s comfort and I know that I’m very blessed.”

Sisters in the fellowship posed for photo before their dance and song rehearsal for the 2019 Covenant Missions Week

Iris continues to grow and serve in the Filipino Fellowship. Her passion for Christ is evident as she takes time to pass on this faith to her daughter back home in the Philippines. She enrolled her child in a Christian school. And every week, they would have video calls so that Iris can teach her about the Bible. She has also been joining an online Bible study group in the Philippines led by her aunt. She has grown so much in her faith that she has even been asked to share the Word and be a blessing to others through it.

Missions Begins at Home

It is amazing what God can do with simple acts of blessing others – from the employer who gave Iris the opportunity to go to church, the people in the service who showed her concern, the befrienders who followed up on her, and the fellow Filipinos who encouraged her.

We don’t need to go very far to do these things. Let’s not miss out on the Irises among us who need the touch of God in their lives. Let’s open our eyes to see the missions field we are already in.

Indeed, missions begins at home. Let’s go forth and bless the nations right where we are!

Timothy Lim

Timothy Lim worships at WDL Centre. He has recently returned to Singapore after university studies. He is currently working on a book focused on Christian living in the mundane for the next generation.

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Daily Devo

Daily Devotional Journal

Scripture:
1 Samuel 22:20-23
Sat, 18 September 2021

God’s Church Will Not Die

Observation:

What is the significance of Abiathar’s escape from Saul’s slaughter of the priests?

Deeper Reflection
GOD’S FULFILMENT of His word of judgment on the house of Eli through the unjust and brutal slaughter of the priests by Saul is a divine mystery. Out of this comes another divine mystery: “But one son of Ahimelech… named Abiathar, escaped and fled after David” (v.20). In His judgment on Eli’s house, God preserved one descendant of Eli. Such is the sovereignty of God. And we must peg divine mystery to divine sovereignty. God’s preservation of one priest – albeit a descendant of Eli – out of the massive slaughter points to a divine principle: God always insistently preserves His people in the midst of destruction. The narrator shows the sharp contrast in Saul and David’s treatment of the priests to underscore this divine principle. To Ahimelech, Saul said, “You shall surely die” (1 Sam 22:16); to Abiathar, David said, “You are safe with me” (v.23). The priests of God were destroyed, but not completely. “The people of God may often be put down, but never put out. Abiathar’s escape does not mean that all God’s servants are immune from the world’s butchery, but that the world’s butchery can never wipe out all of God’s servants. The Lord does not promise that we will not die for the Kingdom of God, but the Kingdom of God will never die.”34 Jesus has made His commitment and promise that His Church will not die: “I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it” (Matt 16:18).
34 Dale Ralph Davis, 232
Application:

What does it mean for me that the Church of God will not die?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise:
  • For Church Board: To see the church as God’s Church that will not die
  • Pray for significant people:
  • Pray for those in need:
  • Pray for self:

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