Celebrating Dragon Boat Festival as Chinese Christians

What we can learn from Qu Yuan 🙂

Dragon Boat Festival is celebrated to commemorate Qu Yuan, a high-ranking politician and poet (340-278 BC). He loved his country and the people. In return, the people loved him too. 

When he was in exile due to political reasons, Qu Yuan wrote a poem expressing his love for his state. Upon hearing the defeat of his country, he was grieved that he threw himself into the Miluo River. 

The local villagers immediately raced out in their boats to search for him in the river, but they could not find his body. To prevent the fish from eating his body, they threw lumps of rice into the river as food for the fish. This is why we eat rice dumplings on Dragon Boat Festival.

As Chinese Christians, there are 2 ways we can learn from Qu Yuan:

(1) to love our country

We are to pray for the welfare of the city that we are living in (Jeremiah 29:7). We are also to pray for our leaders in authority, that the people will live in peace and harmony (1 Tim 2:1-2) 

(2) to do good deeds

People loved Qu Yuan because he was a nobleman and he cared for them. 

As Christians, we are to bear the fruit of the Spirit, such as: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23) and to do good deeds to bless the community (Matthew 5:16).

As Christians, let us pray for our country and do good deeds that glorify God in Heaven.

Happy Dragon Boat Festival!

Keeping A Spiritual Journal

A spiritual journal helps us to see God at work in our lives.

A spiritual journal is more than recording our daily activities: what we did, where did we go, etc.

A spiritual journal is a tool to help us see what God is doing in our life. It is personal. The journal entries are between you and God (but of course, feel free to share with your family on what God is doing in your life).

Below are some helpful journal prompts we can use:

The light of Christ shines in us and through us

Paul wrote to the Christians at Thessalonica, encouraging them in their faith and walking in holiness.

1 Thessalonians 3:9-13

9 How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you? 10 Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith. 11 Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. 12 May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. 13 May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.

Which words speak to you in this passage? May be you caught the words such as joy, prayer, faith, presence of God, love, strengthen your hearts and holy in the presence of God.  

Apostle Paul wrote 1 Thessalonians and also the 2 Thessalonians to the Christians at the church at Thessalonica. Paul established this church during his second missionary journey (about AD 51).

In Acts, Luke mentioned how Paul and Silas came to Thessalonica, and founded the church. They led to the Thessalonians’ conversion to Christ (Acts 17:1-15). Thessalonica is a city that still exists today but it is now called Thessaloniki. It was one of the very few cities that survived from the New Testament era. Today, it is still an important industrial and commercial city in the modern day Greece. 

Paul wrote this letter to encourage these young Christians to reassure them of God’s love for them. In this letter, Paul thanked God for their strong faith and their good reputations (1:1-10). Paul mentioned that it was him and his companions who brought the Gospel to them (2:1-12) and they were responsive to the Gospel (2:13-16).Paul longed to see them again (2:17-20). Since he was not able to see them that soon, he had sent Timothy to encourage them in their faith (3:1-13).

In 1 Thessalonians, Paul talked about a few things, about our conduct and the life we have as:

  • Live holy lives by avoiding sexual immorality (4:1-8)
  • Love each other (4:9-10)
  • Live as good citizens in this world (4:11,12)
  • Comfort of the hope we have in Christ (4:13-18)
  • New life in Christ (5:1-11)

1 Thessalonians was also a letter that talked about the second coming of Jesus. We had to prepare for the second coming: warn the idle (5:14), encourage the timid (5:14), be patient with everyone (5:14), be kind to everyone (5:15), be joyful always (5:16), pray continually (5:17), give thanks (5:18), test everything that is taught (5:20,21) and avoid evil (5:22).  

The Love of Christ is in us

Paul was thankful for these new believers in Thessalonica. At the same time, Paul and his co-workers prayed night and day earnestly for them.

“10 Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.”

Three things he prayed:

(1) Their faith might mature (verse 10)

We can never be perfect in our faith. Until the day we meet Jesus face to face, we would not be perfect in our faith. There is always room for growth. We go “from faith to faith” (Romans 1:17).  

(2) Their love will increase and overflow for each other (verse 12)

“May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.”

During times of distress and sufferings, people’s ugly side is revealed. People can be selfish and demanding, or shutting off people. But some people will use this time to draw closer to God and to reach out to those in need. Christian love is not only limited to Christians, but to everyone else. Who can you share the love of Christ with this advent season?

(3) Their holiness of life (verse 13)

“May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.” (verse 13)

Jesus Christ had come and He will return again. When Jesus Christ comes again the second time, He would not return as a baby again, but He would be the glorious Victor, who had victory over sin and death. Let us remember, as followers of Jesus Christ, we are called to holiness.

Prayers make a difference in our lives. In tough times, the Thessalonians remained firm in the Lord. They continued their relationships with Paul, and they with them. It is relationship with other brothers and sisters in Christ that helped us through tough times. We know that we are keeping one another in our prayers.

Light of Christ has shine among us

Christmas is to celebrate that the love of God has come from Heaven to Earth and dwelled among us. Jesus Christ is the ultimate expression of God’s love. Without Jesus Christ coming to save us, we will all perish. We will die not only physically where our bodies will decay, but we will also die spiritually—perish in God’s wrath for our sins forever.

God sent His one and only begotten Son, Jesus Christ to us so that those who believe in Him and call upon Him will be saved from God’s wrath and eternal damnation. Jesus Christ came as flesh and blood. He lived among us so that through Him, we could experience God’s great love for us. In Jesus Christ, we experience the peace of God. Peace that is deep within us. We experience God’s love. We experience hope. Hope that one day, Jesus Christ will come again for us.

2,000 years ago, Jesus had come. Light has shone in the dark. Today, the light of Christ is still shining. May it shine brightly in our lives. Let us live a life of thanksgiving for the goodness of God in our lives, for all the blessings we receive. Because all that we have comes from God. Let us live prayerful lives: praying and let us live a life that matures in faith and live a holy life. While we were still in the dark, Christ’s light shone in us. May we carry His light wherever we go. 

An Internal Dialogue with myself

Malaysia has entered into the 3rd wave of the pandemic. Towards the end of the 2nd wave, people were starting to move about and life seemed to go back to normal. With the 3rd wave of the pandemic, once again, we have to remind ourselves to be careful and to practice social distancing and personal hygiene at all times.

Now that I was not able to meet my friends as regularly, I have a chance to talk to myself— as a friend. When was the last time you were nice to yourself? It is easy to be nice to our friends and strangers, but we are not necessarily the nicest person to ourselves. We think awful things about ourselves. I am harsh on myself and say the not-so-nice things to myself all the time. Often times, we are our own biggest critic.

I am glad that I had this chance to talk to myself and be a friend to myself. Jesus said that we should love others as we love ourselves (Matthew 22:39). We can not treat ourselves too poorly or else we will be devaluing ourselves from the person whom God had created us to be.

When I start to respect and treat myself better, I have a better outlook on life and am more responsive to receive the blessings and gifts that God has given to me. 

  1. Be mindful

Time slips by like sand. If I am not careful in keeping track on the use of my time, I will be overwhelmed with the tasks which needed to be completed.

Lately I have been working myself too hard. Just about half an hour ago, I was looking into the mirror and was shocked to see the dark circles under my eyes. It has been a tough and busy week, and the momentum will build up by the weekend.

I cram too much into the day. This is when I realise I have to take care of myself so that I am able to share my gifts with my family, church members and friends. Take time to be mindful of what is happening in the day and pay attention to what God is saying in every circumstance.

I keep a journal at night so that I can keep track of what happened in the day, in the past week and in the past month. Tracking my progress will help me to stay focus on what needs to be done. It may mean saying “no” to less important thing so that I can focus on the tasks that needed to be done.Time with God   

2. Time with God

This is the most important one to be on this list. Time with God is the most precious part of my day. I get to be alone with God, study His Word and to be reminded of His sovereignty and how loved I am.  Time with God also reminds me that the agenda of the day is set by God, not me. I am to welcome assignments from Him and to participate in His Work. It is an adventure with God and an adventure to know myself better.      

3. Nourish my body

Now that I am starting to eat healthy, I do feel the difference. I am less sluggish and I feel more energized.  I begin to pay attention to my body and to understand my body more, in terms of what makes me feel good and the type of food that makes me feel sick and sluggish. When I am mindful of the things I put into my body, I am showing kindness to myself. This helps me to appreciate myself. God has given me a body and this is my task to take care of it. In the past, we feed it with whatever we want because we are young and we want to satisfy our cravings for fried chicken and sweet soda. Now that I learn to feed it with the nutritious food, I feel an improvement in my overall health.

Apart from that, getting enough rest is important too. When I was functioning on 5 hours of sleep, I was irritable and made poor decisions. Now, I make it a priority to get enough sleep and rest, not just for myself, but so that I can lead better and make decisions that is beneficial to all.  

I read somewhere that exercise is a way to celebrate what my body can do. When I exercise, it gives me an opportunity to thank the Lord for what I can do with my body. Just today, I can swim longer than I normally can. These little victories help me to celebrate life.

Taken during a morning walk. Morning walks refresh me.
Saw an orchid during my morning walk. The morning walks refresh me.

Learning to Love and Appreciate Myself

Learning to love and appreciate myself is a journey. Jesus Christ had died on the Cross for me and had saved me from sin so that I can have a relationship with God. I am a child of God. I should treasure my life and enjoy the days that I have while on this earth. This is my personal growth during the pandemic—to see myself as a friend. 

How was your personal journey during this pandemic? May you discover something wonderful about yourself and that you will treasure yourself every day.

Are Christians Superstitious?

Today is the Mid-Autumn Festival. It is celebrated by the Chinese and it is the second most important tradition celebrated after Chinese New Year. On this day, the moon is round and bright. The Chinese believe that the full moon is the symbol of a family reunion. Families gather together for a reunion meal as well as to observe the moon. Many ancient poets wrote about the moon as it reminded them about their family back home and thus they expressed their homesickness in the poems.

Today, most Chinese families will be playing with lanterns, enjoying gazing at the full moon and having a meal with their family and friends.  The Chinese will also be enjoying mooncakes— a traditional Chinese pastry which is made from wheat flour and sweet fillings, such as lotus seed paste. The mooncake is a symbol of family reunion. It is usually only eaten during the Mid-Autumn Festival.  

However, in the ancient Chinese world, not everyone was able to enjoy looking at the moon. There were superstitions that forbid those who were feeling tired to be out of their house during Mooncake festival. For the ladies who had just given birth, they too, were not allowed to enjoy the full moon, even though they might be standing at the balcony of the house. There were many other superstitions as well which people had to observe to avoid bad luck.

Superstitions are not things of the past. Regardless of how the world is changing, it seems human beings are always looking for some objects, behaviour and belief that make us feel in control of our lives. We know that in life, many things are beyond our control: accidents, bad bosses, terrible job interviews, a sickness in the body, a crisis and so on. We can not control what will happen to our health, wealth and future but if there is something we can do to increase the chances of our having a good life, we will take it.   

I have friends who are Christians but they believe in lucky numbers and lucky objects which will give them good luck and prosperity. They still hold on to the Chinese superstition by looking at the Zodiac signs and finding life partners by looking at the time of birth to see if the pair is compatible.

According to the Oxford Dictionary, superstition is, “a widely held but irrational belief in supernatural influences, especially as leading to good or bad luck, or a practice based on such a belief.”

A superstition is a belief that if you do a certain ritual, it will lead to either good luck or bad luck. If you do this, you will have a good day. But if you do that, you will have an unlucky day. We may have our lucky objects that seem to bring us good luck if we carry it with us. This is the more obvious kind of superstition.

There is also subtle superstition too, one that we may not be aware of. We can be superstitious but it is a fake mask of being spiritual. For example, a Christian may say or use a specific special prayer so that God must surely listen. Or, some Christians may even take ministry as superstition: I am serving in church ministry and because of this, God will bless me. I read the Bible and pray in the morning, so that God will bless me with a good day. If we are not careful, we will turn our ministry into rituals that will bring us blessings in life. If I miss reading the Bible in the morning, something bad will happen, which I irrationally believe is God’s punishment for me. We may unknowingly turn our relationship with God into superstition.

One afternoon, a church member came into my office. She showed me crosses which she had brought from a Christian bookstore and requested for prayers of blessings for these crosses. She thought by blessing these crosses, they would protect her family and household. Crosses are symbols to remind us of the sacrificial love of Jesus on the Cross for us and His triumph over sin and death. The cross pendant on our necklace or the cross we put in our living rooms will not protect us from harm and evil—only Jesus Himself can save us and protect us.  

How do we know if we are faithful followers of Jesus or we are being superstitious? A sign that we may be subtly superstitions is that we depend on other things apart from God Himself for success, good things, security and protection.    

Superstition may seem to give us comfort and a sense of security but it is not the real peace that we can have. Real peace comes in knowing Jesus alone and that His grace is sufficient for us (2 Corinthians 12:9), regardless of the external circumstances. Let us not be bound to superstition. We have been set free from fear in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ has come so that we can have life to the full (John 10:10), and not a life that worries and stresses over not being faithful in following a certain ritual or behaviour.  

Jesus Christ died on the Cross to save us from God’s wrath against our sins so that we will not die eternally. We are saved not because of good works but we are saved because of God’s love and grace for us. We love God and others and do good work in response to His great love for us, not because we want to get more blessings and have more successes.

Superstitions may seemingly give us a sense of control and security but the greatest security that we can have is in Christ Jesus Himself. Do you trust in Him enough that we do not need to have lucky things as crutches for a smooth sailing life? May knowing Jesus be the greatest joy and treasure in your life. 

Our response in the midst of the pandemic

With the increase of the Covid-19 cases around the world (some countries are facing the third-wave), we may be going through mixed emotions. We may be feeling discouraged, fearful and even a sense of hopelessness. We may even have asked, why isn’t God doing anything about this pandemic?

From the Bible, especially the psalms, we learn that we can tell God what is on our minds and He also permits us to cry out to Him during moments of doubt, discouragement, sadness, grief, anxiety, pain and sufferings. We live in a fallen world where there is pain, injustice, suffering and tragedy. And God allows us to cry out to Him in these situations. God hears every single word of our prayers. He cares. He loves us. We can pray to God telling Him about our real feelings, thoughts and emotions.

The pandemic has brought changes to all of us. We are now living in the “new normal”. Practicing social distancing, wearing our masks when we are outdoors, sanitising our hands are a part of our daily routine now.

In the midst of the pandemic, we echo the words of David in Psalm 13,

“1 How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?

 How long will you hide your face from me?

2 How long must I wrestle with my thoughts

    and day after day have sorrow in my heart?

How long will my enemy triumph over me? “

How long will God forget us? We feel that there is no end to the pandemic.

But remember, as believers, we are people of hope. When we cry out to God, we don’t do it thinking that the end result will be hopeless. We are certain that there is hope: our God is sovereign, almighty, all wise and powerful. There is nothing that is above Him. He is the one that is ultimately in control of the events of this world.

David ended his psalm with praise, because he remembered Who God is.

5 But I trust in your unfailing love;

    my heart rejoices in your salvation.

6 I will sing the Lord’s praise,

for he has been good to me.


David chose to trust in God when he was discouraged and afraid because he knew God would save him (verse 5). God had loved him and had been good to him (verses5- 6)


The pandemic may stir fear and anxiety in us but let us wait and hope upon God. Let us continue to encourage one another with psalms, Bible verses, spiritual songs and prayers. Let us not forget to do good to others especially to those in need. Let us worship God in new creative ways. Let us share of God’s unfailing love.

May the witness, love, faith and hope of believers be an encouragement to those around us!

What To Do When I Can’t Feel God’s Love For Me?

We all go through times when we cannot feel God’s love for us. What should we do?

There are times when we cannot feel God’s love. We may be doing all the “right” things: attend church services, attend Bible studies, attend prayer meetings, help those in need, serve when the pastor asks for help, but why do we feel that God is so far away? Why can’t I feel God’s love?

Our Feelings Do Not Paint Us the Whole Picture

Our feelings come and go. They change depending on our circumstances, on our moods or the kind of day we are having. However, the truth will remain the truth, regardless if we have a bad day or a good day.

God’s Word is unchanging. What God says in the Bible is the ultimate truth. Nothing can be added to it. Nothing can be taken away from it. It is the truth.

When you cannot feel God’s love for you, know that He loves you so much.

  • 9 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1 John 4:9-10, NIV)
  • “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!” (1 John 3:1, NIV)

God has shown His love for us, even before we were born. We are all sinful people: we do things we are not proud of. We lie, we cheat, we hurt others and ourselves. We harm our bodies. Because of our sins, we cannot draw near to God who is holy and without sin.

2,000 years ago, God sent His only Son Jesus Christ Whom He loves—Who is without sin, into this world to carry all our sins upon Himself and die in our place so that we will not die eternally. Jesus died for us so that we are made righteous and be reconciled to God. We then become the children of God.

Imagine this, the King of kings and Lord of lords loved us so much that He would rather sacrifice His only Son whom He loves so much than to see us in eternal damnation! He loves us.

Don’t trust in our feelings. But trust in God’s Word.

Remove Unnecessary Burdens

Are you carrying unnecessary burdens? The Bible tells us that nothing can separate us from God’s love.

  • “For i am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39, NIV) .

Nothing can separate us from God’s love. Not our past mistakes, our hurts, our failures, our shame and guilt. That is why when we become a Christian, we feel a weight being lifted off. We know God has forgiven us of our sins. We can move on in our lives. If you still hold on to your past mistakes and think that God can not love you, it is time to surrender them into God’s Hands.

Seek God with All Your Heart

The Bible promises us that for those who seek Him, we will find Him.
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7, NIV)

Be intentional in seeking Him. We will find Him if we seek Him with all our hearts.

Count our Blessings

When you do not feel God’s love, look around you. What do you see? The fact that we have a handphone or an electronic tablet is already a blessing. We have a shelter we call home, food on the table, clothes to wear and education.

Look around us and give thanks to God for all that we have. Remember God’s goodness to you. The fact that we get to breath with our lungs and wake up to another day is a blessing God has given to us.
“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” (Psalm 103:2, ESV)

The more we give thanks to God for what we have the more we see He have been with us all these while.

Get Together With Our Christian Friends

Many passages in the Bible tell us the importance of having companions in our life to walk with us. We encourage each other, share Bible verses with each other and pray for each other. Sharing with our friends and asking for prayer requests will strengthen faith in God when our souls feel dry and weary.
“Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice” (Proverbs 27:9, NIV)

Remember, we don’t measure God’s love for us with our feelings. We trust in God. We put our faith in Who He says He is, because the Bible is His Word to us. Seek God with all your heart, and you will find Him. Count our blessings and get together with friends whom we can trust; they will encourage us and pray for us. God loves you so much.

I pray that you will experience God’s love for you.

How To Tell If You Are Walking Closely With God

Perhaps at one point in our life, we want to know about our relationship with God. How close are we to God? How do we know if our relationship with God is a growing and healthy one?

We have to understand that it is not by doing good deeds that makes us close to God. God is not like a human person. Human beings are fond of the people who love us and help us in times of needs but it is different with God. No good deeds we do will make God love us more, because He already loves us. We do good deeds in response to His love and it will please His heart but we don’t do good deeds just to gain His love. He loves us so much that He sent His one and only begotten Son Jesus Christ to die on the Cross for our sins so that whoever believed in Him will be saved, as written in John 3:16. We are loved by God and are saved into His Kingdom because of His grace for us. Grace is given when we do not deserve it. It is God’s grace, and not because of the good deeds we do.

If we know we are loved by God, we are welcomed into a relationship with Him. We can draw near to Him. The Bible has a beautiful promise about drawing near to God. James 4:8 says, Draw near to God and He will draw near to you (ESV).

As Christians, please remember that we are on a journey until we meet Jesus face to face. We continue to grow, we continue to walk with God day by day. Heaven is our final destination. Each of us walk at different paces, some faster and some slower than the others but we are not to judge others. Each of us should focus on our own journey in our relationship with Jesus and enjoy it.

How can you tell if you are walking closely with God?

1.There are changes in you

There are changes in you. You are not who you used to be. You are now bearing the fruits of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23, ESV).

May be in the past, you had anger issues, or an addiction issue but now that you have a relationship with Jesus, you have been changed for the better. You are now patient and a person of peace and gentleness.

Perhaps in the past, you are a worrier. But now, you learn to trust God and surrender your worries to Him. You are now a joyful person. In short, you can feel there is a change in you as a person. The people around you will notice this change too: that you have peace, are more joyful, more caring and more loving.

2.You show love and mercy to others

Our God is a God who is merciful and compassionate. When you are walking closely with Him, you will know His heartbeat for the lost, the poor, the marginalised, the outcast and the unseen of the society. You are now more willing to show love and mercy and care about what is going on in the society and the world because you have experienced God’s love and mercy towards you.

3.You surrender everything to God

Once you go deeper into a relationship with God, you realise you can trust Him and that He knows what is best for you. Sure, there are struggles in you to want to listen to Him or to yourself but as you take the leap of faith and follow Him, you will know that His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:9). He is able to do so much more than you can ever imagine for His glory (Ephesians 3:20-21).

This is when you begin to surrender everything to God. You surrender your dreams, your desires, your ambitions, your future to Him. You will be much more interested to listen to His guidance and accomplish the agenda He has for you.

4.You love to spend time with God

In the past, when you are a new Christian, you feel that reading the Bible is a boring thing to do. But now, you have fresh eyes to see the gems in God’s Word! You find God’s Word life giving. You desire to know Him more intimately. You desire to be in His presence, read His Word, worship Him with songs and pray. You love spending time with Him that you block aside time and make it a priority just so to make sure you have time alone with God daily.

5.You trust in God’s goodness

You no longer “decide” on God’s love for you by the circumstances in your life. Even when there are some unexpected challenges which cause you to grief, you still trust that God is good, His plan is the best and you can still worship Him for who He is.

This verse will be so real to you “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28, NIV).

If you have been hesitating and doubting about life as a Christian, come and see for yourself. Come and experience His love and power. May His peace and love be upon you.

Work Heartily For the Lord

Today is the first day of going back to the office after 83 days of lockdown. Of course, there are the usual paper work to do, papers to file, emails to write, people to call, and the list goes on. But, I have not forgotten my mentor, Maria’s advice to me: to make my workspace an altar of offering and praise to the Lord. I kept this in mind, and it made the day enjoyable.

It happens that my devotional reading this morning was taken from Colossians 3:23-24, 23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ (ESV).

When it comes to God, it definitely was not a coincidence that this verse was for my meditation today. Nothing happens coincidentally with God.

Whatever I do today becomes my act of worship to God. What seems to be mundane and trivial became tasks which keep me accountable to God, my church leaders and members.

Work is a beautiful thing. Before the Fall of mankind, God had given Adam the responsibility to tend the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:15). The world at that time was perfect: there was no sin and everything was freshly created. The fruits must be the sweetest, the flowers must have been in full bloom and the animals were gentle and playful. Yet, God had assigned Adam to work. Work was a gift from God.

After the Fall, however, work is now viewed as our cruel punishment, something which we need to do to survive and to provide for our family. Thousands of years ago, our ancestors toiled the ground with sweat to eat the fruits of the field. Today, we hustle hard to pay our bills and buy our food.

Let us not forget that God is our Provider (Philippians 4:19). Jesus taught us not to worry about what we should eat or drink (Matthew 6:31-32). Therefore, apostle Paul reminded believers to offer our work as an act of worship to the Lord.

While apostle Paul was writing Colossians, he wrote to the slaves (or bondservants). He urged them to remember that their true Master is the Lord Himself. It is applicable for us toxau: work to please your Lord, not just your bosses.

May God be our motivation. May He be pleased with the works of our hands. Our work brings us much satisfaction, meaning, joy and enjoyment when we focus on the reason why we work: we are serving Lord.

Whatever you do: house chores, office work, taking care of your family, or personal matters, do them for the glory of God. When God is the motivation of all that you do, it will make the tasks much more enjoyable. What a sweet promise it is that we will be rewarded for serving the Lord!

God Loves the Peoples of the World

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Within 6 days, God created the universe, including a man and a woman whom He had made in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27). God blessed the man and the woman and told them to be “fruitful and increase in number” and to “fill the earth and subdue it” (Genesis 1:28).

God saw all His creation and said that they were “good”. He then rested on the seventh day.

Humankind is made in the image of God. We are so special and precious to Him that He made us to carry His image and reflect His likeness. By bearing His image, we have been set apart from the other creatures.

If you have children, you will notice that your children have resemblances in your personalities and physical features because they are your children. You will also notice that you look like your parents because they gave birth to you. As God’s children, we bear His likeness and we are to reflect His goodness and beauty.

When sin entered this world through disobedience, instead of showing love, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and peace to the people around us, we are now marred by anger, jealousy, pride, hatred, bitterness, grudge, prejudice against others.

Jesus Christ had come into this world to free us from the bondage of sin, and He also frees us from hatred and prejudice towards others.

Jesus was nailed on the Cross for our sins. His blood, being poured out had washed away our sins. His precious blood washed away our hatred, anger, fear, pride, differences.

His blood had been poured out for everyone in this world, past, present and future. It is written in Revelation 5:9, “…you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation” (Rev 5:9).

Jesus died for everyone in the world. He died so that we can live in peace, love and reconciliation with others and with God. He died so that we as His followers can tell about His love and put our love into actions.


(photo credit: Element 5 Digital)

Knowing that you have been made in the image of God, how can you show love to the people around you? How can we love those who are different from us?

May we His followers be agents of love, peace and reconciliation in this world.