I love this quote. It is from The Deathly Hallows – one of the many Harry Potter books. This 2 lines are beautiful. Go read it yourself to full understand the meaning of it.
As I recollect all my thoughts after the celebrations of our 20th anniversary in HOGC, I thought this was the perfect quote to describe how I feel. “After all this time? Always”
After all these years of building the church, serving God, seeing friends come and go… I have come to ask myself this question too. After the highs of the celebration dies down, the ‘wooohooos’, the multiple photos (READ: eh, later take photo ah! oh my gosh, we need a photo!) moments, I come home to solidify and really ask myself this question. After all this time?
And I have come to an answer, just like how Professor Snape said, “Always”.
I made a promise with Julius on our wedding day with this quote. This lasts for eternity. And today, I make a promise to God, with this quote too. That to build the house of God – Always. The 2 biggest pre-made decisions in my life.
This 20th anniversary reminds me of the goodness of God in HOGC’s history but also reminds me of how God has been so good to me. Just like in a church, we have our ups and downs, it is unrealistic to say that we have not gone through some tough times, we have BUT God has come through for us. As I thought back, I have been through some tough times too.. but God was and is still faithful to me.
I remember the times where I make so many mistakes and had areas of my life to work on. You see christianity is about our character to be more like Christ. We are not perfect, we have areas to work and grow in. Despite that, my Pastors and leaders always allowed me to grow as they kept me close. I could still grow in this area as I continued to serve with the team. I was still loved when I was struggling. They always made it clear that it is our character that matters the most and they want us to grow in that. Sometimes, people don’t see that. People don’t tell the other part of the story – this is the other part. That at the end of the day, the person that has to grow/change is US. It is our character. That is the most important, far more important than the “title/position” we hold in church. Even the bible says so in 1 Samuel 16:7, “… man looks at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart.” This verse really put things into perspective for me as I worked on growing.
So, after all this time do I give back and build the church? Always. Why should I not? Why would I not? God, pastors and my leaders took me in in my weaknesses, trained and believed in me when I had nothing, so why would I not do that? I would like to think that while I have areas in my life to work on and grow (I am not perfect!), yet because I have grown, I can give back more. Because I have broke through in certain areas, now I can do more. Time won’t change my decision. Feelings won’t change my decision. Always – is the only way for me. As Pastor How once shared with us and again last weekend, “Don’t just give God your weaknesses, give Him your strength” I guess, I am once again reminded of my decision. It is time to give Him my strength.
Another year has passed in building HOGC. This is my 17th year in church! What an honour to be found in His house. It is my privilege that God has placed me in the earlier years of the church to see His hand and to have played a part in building it. Time has passed but the heart has not. Our SPs and Pastors’ hearts for the people has grown to be even bigger as the church grows bigger. Time has made things bigger and better but the presence of God is still evident.
So, after all this time? Always.