Testimony (8)

Mark 10:27. Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”

It is difficult for me to share this episode of my life. But it had a very happy ending by the amazing grace of God. I am sharing this testimony in the hope of helping fellow believers who are going through such hurt in their relationship with their loved ones.

I grew up having a terrible relationship with my father. He was always quarreling with my mother over financial woes. We were impoverished because of his indolence and gambling habits. I never knew a day of peace growing up.

When I started my career, I contributed towards paying the mortgage of our Housing Development Board (HDB) apartment. One evening, I blew my top when I learned we might be evicted because we were in arrears of 13 months of mortgage payment. Later the HDB added the arrears due to the principal sum and recalculated our monthly mortgage payment after we had settled part of the arrears.

I just got married then. At the wedding dinner, I went on stage to thank my dad for bringing me up. I felt so hypocritical for making that speech in front of relatives, friends and colleagues.

Despite the sour relationship with my dad, I had always hoped to do well in life to support him and my mum.

I prayed often just for a stable career and improvement in our relationship. What seemed so impossible to me had become possible with God. He blessed me way beyond what I had prayed for.  All thanks and glory to Him !

I went on to do well in my career and I could pay up both the mortgage of my parents’ apartment and mine too in full.

Growing up with so much hurt, it is impossible to work on the relationship on our own effort. Many who suffered such hurt could testify to what I was going through.

I prayed often for the salvation of my parents too. I would sign up for any evangelistic dinner organized by any church to bring them along.

When my first son came after 7 years of marriage, things began to change. My wife and I would bring him often to see both his paternal and maternal grandparents over the weekend.

I really did not know when my relationship with my dad began to mend so much that I could really love him and care for him. All past hurts were not only forgiven but forgotten as well.

God is indeed faithful when we ask Him earnestly in prayer. What seemed so impossible to me had become possible with God. I am sure His Spirit has been working on my heart since as promised – when we come to Him with contrition acknowledging our helplessness and allowing Him to work on us. Praise His holy name !

It has been 11 years since my dad went to the Lord and I can still remember fondly the good times we had together.

Testimony (7)

My dad had a heart attack in mid of 2001. After being warded in the hospital, tests revealed 80% of his arteries and veins were blocked. The consultant surgeon briefed me on 2 options. One was to do nothing at all and the other was to opt for triple bypass heart surgery. The risks were high as my dad was diabetic and advanced in age at 70.

When my wife and I prayed for him, we knew in our spirit that God would heal him this time to hear the gospel and make the decision to accept Jesus as his personal Savior and Lord.

My wife shared with him the Good News and assured him that God would heal him. But she added that whatever was the outcome of the surgery, which he had already decided to go for it,  it was a wise decision to make peace with the one true God who is the Creator of this Universe right away. He readily agreed to receive Jesus into his life. And I sought the help of a pastor then to baptize him immediately.

The triple bypass surgery was not exactly smooth sailing. The surgeon told me later that he could not find a good vein at all. As he had to take a vein at the back of his rib cage, another surgical procedure had to be done. And he could only do the bypass for 2 of the arteries as the vein was short.

The surgeon was very experienced as he had done over 300 bypass surgeries and he told me that my dad’s case was the most challenging so far.

Over the next few days recuperating, the skin graft to close up the gaping hole in my dad’s chest was not healing at all and another skin graft had to be done. Yet again, it failed because of his diabetic condition. The surgeon told us to expect the worst as infection would set in. Meanwhile, there was the constant fear of other organ failure due to his diabetic condition.

The surgeon later suggested trying a revolutionary idea of running antibiotic solution over the wound all the time to see if it would heal by itself. There was hardly any more skin on his arms or legs for further skin graft.

We prayed and we knew God would heal him.

Then the amazing divine act of God’s providence happened. Skin started growing little by little, millimeter by millimeter, from 3 corners as the gaping hole was triangular in shape. It took another two or three months in the high dependency ward before the hole was closed up. Hallelujah ! Praise the Lord for answering our prayer then ! My dad had another 2 and a half years of quality life till the next heart attack on Christmas Day of 2004. The church pastor and several brothers and sisters, of the church I was attending then, were able to pray with him one after another before he went to the Lord that very day. He was conscious all the time till his heart just stopped. The next day, the massive earthquake and tsunami happened near Aceh, Indonesia.

My 89 year old father-in-law who witnessed this divine act of God’s providence was also ripe in his heart to accept Jesus into his life. Praise the Lord. The Lord is good.

Testimony (6)

God is good. God had healed me several times miraculously in the past. He had also bailed me out of business failures twice. (See my post on blog sub-category Ramblings http://www.jcmanifesto.org/dealing-with-trials-in-life/ ). He had granted several of my desperate petitions for which I pleaded with importunity. I shared these testimonies in my book, The Coming Economic Flood.

Since I gave up the lure of the world to serve Him full-time some 12 years ago, He had provided for all my needs all these years. My second and third child who came immediately after, a girl and a boy, are now aged 12 and 11 respectively. My eldest boy is now 21. Many wondered how I could raise a family of 3 children without much income. I do not take any income from the ministry. All love gifts and honorarium are saved and given to meet the needs of the least of the brothers, needy ministry workers and the basic needs in the mission field.

God is good.

In early December 2013, my wife was worried over our household expenses and I was at a crossroads in the ministry which exacerbated her concern. I was about to step down from pastoral ministry in January 2014.  I believe everything work together for good that even trials experienced are meant to train us to be patient in waiting upon Him. I believed God would show me soon on the direction I should take.

Then came the publishing of the book  – The Coming Economic Flood – 6 months later in June 2014, the formalization of my ministry JC’s Manifesto, the call to serve in 2 churches, and the call to lead evangelistic missions into specific countries with specific evangelistic plans.

God is good.

Within a week of my wife’s grouse, I received a call from an insurance agent whom I did not contact for the past 15 years. He told me that he was looking high and low for me as and I was un-contactable after moving out of my last address.  My policy had matured and I would need to update my particulars.

I had taken a look at my CPF statement 12 years ago. I only had enough money in the ordinary account to pay the premium of three insurance policies for another 4 years. I dare not contact any insurance company for fear of either being asked to top up the policies or to make the hard choice of terminating them.

To my surprise, I have met the minimum sum in my CPF account and I could withdraw all the money from the ordinary account.  To my further surprise, 2 other policies matured too.

How did the insurance policies get paid when I did not have much income over the 12 years ? My wife reminded me that I got a consulting job from 2005 to 2006 but I only received a management fee without CPF contribution. I got paid from 2008 to 2009 as an executive director in a startup company but the contribution only lasted a year.

How grateful to know that God would take care of our anxieties at the very moment we were anxious. God is good !

Testimony (5)

After several years of working for corporations without apparent job security, I decided it was time to start my own enterprise. By the grace of God, the enterprise prospered from the first year of operation. With success came excesses as well and I started to drift away from God. It was nights of fine dining, partying, revelry and living the high life in the 90s. It was such extreme dissipation weighing down on my life.

The wake-up call came one day when I had a terrible fall at home. I could not remember the accident at all as I had a concussion. I was told that blood was oozing out fast from my head wound and I was unconscious. Halfway to the hospital in the ambulance, I woke up. After observation for a whole night and suffering no loss of memory, I was discharged.

While recuperating at home, I was reflecting how close I was to passing away. And would I be in Heaven with that kind of life without genuine repentance ? I was sure I was nowhere near being a disciple of Jesus with the grip-hold of the world on me then. Thank you, Lord for giving me a second chance.

In order to get my mind off work and the usual routine, I went to spend a few days in the cool Genting Highlands. As I went for a stroll with my wife one evening, I slipped and fell head on some 20 to 30 metres down a hilly slope. Not again ! ?  As I was falling down, I could even tell myself this time I am finished.  And my wife told me later that she also thought the same.

I landed on my bottoms at the foot with no broken limbs. My head did not bump against anything as well. I only had a slight scratch on my left leg with my pair of jeans slightly scratched too. It was incredible ! How did I do the somersault ? It happened so fast that I only remembered talking to myself.  Thank you, Lord, once again !

I believe God had kept my life for a purpose. I went back to church fellowship but the sudden turning back from the usual routine was tough. It was another turning point that made me turn back to God for good. It was that first vision which God gave me on 8th September 2001 in New York City. I stayed in the hotel next to the World Trade Centre buildings then.

Testimony (4)

Does honesty pay ? Being a Christian, I naturally believe it does.

I started my career as an electronics engineer in 1985 before switching to the sales engineer vocation in the same electronics multi-national corporation selling semiconductor components. In the third year with the company, I happened to question the management innocently about the allocation of a critical memory component to a distributor who had never bought this component before. It did not cross my mind then that this distributor would gain a profit of USD 500,000 every month selling this component when the market was terribly short of it.

I was immediately transferred out of the Singapore market coverage to a miserably small market which the company could easily terminate my employment for poor performance after a year. I had no choice but to leave the company.

I prayed earnestly for God’s help as I just got married and I was living from paycheck to paycheck then. All praise to the Lord that I got another job very quickly in the same line.

But this company was also terribly unscrupulous. After working for one year, I managed to do very well in sales and hit the highest commission which was equivalent to half a year’s wages. I learned from the human resource administrator that my employment would be terminated before the end of the year so as to disqualify me from collecting the commission.

I had always been a conscientious worker. I began to have doubt whether honesty does pay. On the contrary, it seemed apparent that the wicked prospered.

I was desperate and I prayed earnestly for God’s deliverance and help again. Praise the Lord for His mercy ! Not only I got my commission but I also landed a new job immediately.

A Spanish company with the regional headquarters in Hongkong called me to go over to Hongkong for the interview. I was recommended by someone I just got acquainted through sales call.  It was so timely and swift.  But of course, I knew it was God who answered my plea for a fresh start.  Since I was only going there for a day or two, it did not occur to me that it was winter there and I went wearing just a business shirt and pants ! God is good.

I was out of the woods again by the grace of God. Today, as I read the paper of how the average American is living from paycheck to paycheck, I can empathize with their predicament of struggling to pay monthly bills. I was not in such predicament because I was a spendthrift but because I had to support my parents and their apartment mortgage besides my own then.

As I progressed through my career, I could finally say that honesty does pay in hindsight. God is good. With Christian virtues of honesty and integrity, I could win over the trust of both the suppliers and the customers when I started my own enterprise.   All praise and thanks be to God.

Testimony (3)

I have shared earlier of the near-disastrous incident that I came close to failing the final Mathematics examination paper in the final year of the electrical engineering course in the Singapore Polytechnic.  Never did I expect to face another similar incident in the university in 1985.

Fast forward to the day before I would take the last paper in the final year of the electrical and engineering course in the National University of Singapore.  The last paper was Design. During the year, the whole cohort of some 200 graduands were divided into 2 groups for this particular subject. One group did 4 experimental projects while the other group did 5 completely different from the first group. I happened to be in the first group.

In this Design exam paper, a total of 4 questions would be set – two from each group – and we only need to answer one question. We were allowed to bring all the textbooks we would need to the exam hall.

In the first group, there was a very difficult project on electrical machines and hardly anyone in the whole group really understood what had been taught. So most in the first group, of which I belonged, would skip bringing the textbooks on this particular project and only brought all the necessary textbooks on the other 3 projects for the open exam. We were thinking even if the question on that difficult Electrical Machines project was set, we could still have the choice to answer the other question since 2 questions would be set for each group.

In the evening before the exam the next morning, I was suddenly warded in the hospital for suspected food poisoning. Being so sick and waiting for lab test results, the hospital refused to discharge me for the exam. I prayed and I was eventually allowed to return to the university to take the exam in the morning.

I prayed for strength to go through the exam as I was without sleep for the whole night and I was so pale with abdominal pain.   Thanks be to God for answering my prayer.

When I received the exam paper, I got a rude shock. The exam paper was set with only one question for my group and 3 questions for the other group. It was clearly a big mistake made by the examiners. I believe you can guess that the single exam question for my group was on the Electrical Machines project.

Most in my group just stood up. Many were feeling lost. Some complained loudly. A few were crying. Later when the invigilators realized the mistake. they allowed us to return to our dormitories to pick up the textbooks for that difficult Machines project. Time was extended.

When I was tackling the sole design question of the Electrical Machines project, I could only answer 2 out of the 10 sub questions. It was depressing to think that I would falter at the last hurdle.

It was an agonizing wait of 2 or 3 months before we knew our results. God’s peace, which surpasses all understanding, was with me throughout this agonizing time when I made known my anxieties to Him. I knew in my heart God would answer my prayer that I would pass somehow.

I did pass and I obtained 2nd class honors (Upper Division). All praise and thanks be to God !

Later when I started working as an electronics engineer for a couple of months, I received one of the most prestigious post-graduate scholarship – to study for Masters of any discipline either in Cambridge or Oxford University with full board and lodging, fees, and even a monthly salary which was 25% higher than my current salary.

Hallelujah ! Praise the Lord for watching over me !

Testimony (2)

Just before I was enlisted for national service after I had finished the final year examination in the Singapore Polytechnic in 1980,  I went back to the campus to see the results of the examination.

The results printed on computer paper were pinned on the main notice board of the Polytechnic administration office.   Those who had passed the exams would have their names shown.  And if you had any distinction for any particular subject, the subject code would be printed next to your name.

Many would anxiously look for their name.   I saw my name very quickly with a single distinction in Mathematics.  I was jubilant to have passed.

Then, we would see who were the top students among the 170 students of the electrical engineering course cohort.  We only sat for 6 subjects in the final year.  Two of my classmates had 4 distinctions each.  Probably 7 to 8 of them had 3 or 2 distinctions each.  And then another few had 1 distinction each like me.

A few weeks after I had enlisted for national service, I received a notice to collect my results slip personally and another letter telling me that I had won a prize from the company Olivetti.   I had no idea of the reason for being awarded the prize.

When I went to collect the results slip from the Polytechnic campus,  many course-mates were there too.

To my surprise,  I came in second in the whole course !   How could that happen ! ?   After all, I had only 1 distinction out of 6 subjects while several of my course-mates had 4, 3 and 2 distinctions.

God is good.  Not only I had managed to do well in Mathematics when I was so close to failing the subject and the whole exam,  I had done so well surprisingly at the end.

My results were 1 distinction, 4 As and 1 B.   The classmate who came in first had 4 distinctions and 2 As.   Another classmate had 4 distinctions, 1 A and 1 D.   Some had 3 distinctions, 2 As and 1 D.

Then I realized several top students had a D for one particular subject, Circuit Analysis & Measurements, which pulled down their marks so much.

This subject was an easy subject as only formulae were involved in the analysis and measurements of electrical circuits.  It is almost impossible for the top students to do so badly.

I believe God had granted my prayer petition beyond what I had asked, though I was audacious then to say that His honor was at stake in my anxiety and desperation during the Mathematics exam.  Praise and utmost thanks be to His name !

Because of this good result,  I was permitted to join the local National University of Singapore to study for the Bachelor of Engineering course in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the second year.

It was so incredible.  I was denied a place in Pre-University to study in the top 2-Maths and 2-Sciences classes in Raffles Institution.  Most of these students in these 2 classes went on to study electrical and electronics engineering in the local university.  And I could join them again in the university in the same course year !

All glory to God !

Testimony (1)

3rd July 2015

I was half way through the first year of pre-university course in 1977 when I decided to terminate and apply to study in Singapore Polytechnic. I applied to study 2 mathematics and 2 science subjects in Pre-U but was denied a place as these places were much sought after then. And I was placed in the economics and biology class which was not of my interest and I could not cope.

So off I went to Singapore Polytechnic to study the 3 year electrical engineering course. I did fairly well in the first two years in a cohort of 170 students.

In the final year, I had to sit for the exams of 6 subjects. In the few days prior to taking the final exam paper of Engineering Mathematics which was my favorite subject and I had done well in the first 2 years, I was feeling relieved that the exams would eventually be over and I would join the workforce to support my family. We were downright poor then.

Came that day to sit for the Mathematics paper which would last for 3 hours from 9 am to 12 noon. The paper would consist of 5 compulsory questions in Section A worth 11 marks each and 3 selection questions out of 5 in Section B worth 15 marks each.

My mind went nearly blank for the first 2 hours and I could only answer 2 questions in Section A. That would give me 22 marks and I could not even pass even with a provisionary pass. In those days, if you failed one subject, you had to be retained again for the whole year.

I must not fail !

I had been active serving in the Christian ministries in the polytechnic then. I played the guitar and led the worship in the lunch time meetings. The registered groups of the other faiths were also very active then in proselytization too and there was rivalry.

Thoughts went through my mind that these groups would mock me and my faith for failing the exams.

I asked for permission to go to the toilet to wash up. When I locked up the toilet cubicle, I prayed. I prayed to God that His honor was at stake for I had been conscientious in my studies as well as in service. I knew I could answer the questions except that my mind went blank, so I asked for clarity of mind and that the cloudiness in my mind could disappear.

When I went back to the exam hall, I was able to answer one more question in Section A and another in Section B. Mentally I worked out that I could have 48 marks and that would be enough to qualify for a provisionary pass. Relief and gratitude to God came to my mind.  I went on to finish all questions except one.  Thank you so much, Lord !

When the results came out, I was surprised that I had a distinction for Mathematics !  Only 2 in the cohort had distinction for Mathematics. Hallelujah ! Praise the Lord !

The story did not end here. I will continue with the testimony in another post.

My Faith Journey

2nd July 2015

I had made the decision to believe in Jesus and accept Him as my personal Lord and Savior 4 decades ago. But I cannot say that I was being saved then as true repentance and commitment to follow Him as a true disciple did not come till much later.

Looking back at the last decade or two since I am being saved, my faith journey is filled with numerous trials and blessings.

Our Lord had promised His Spirit to indwell us, give us a new heart and a new spirit and to train us to live in God’s will.  Ezek 36:26-27; Eph 1:4-6; Titus 2:11-12.  And in each trial or blessing, I could really sense the presence of His Spirit walking with me through it.  Everything, be it trial or blessing, indeed work together for good in transforming me to be more and more like Him. Rom 8:28-29. Heb 12:7,11.

I look forward to sharing each of the trials and blessings as far as I could remember in the hope of giving glory to God primarily and encouraging fellow brothers and sisters secondarily to know that God is a very personal God who loves us. And He is definitely very pleased with every intimate moment of our relationship with Him as long as we seek Him earnestly.  He will reward us handsomely too. Heb 11.

Even for petitions which I had come to God with increasing importunity,  He had always answered my prayers – sometimes directly and sometimes indirectly but better as I looked back – in the sense that my faith deepened to take a deeper rest in Him.

(Some of the trials and blessings are also mentioned in my book, The Coming Economic Flood.)

After the incredible vision given me by God in September 2001 which was the turning point in my life,  I knew God wanted me to come out of my career to serve Him.    It was subsequent years of waiting, serving and His divine guidance that I come to realize the message God has given me is to come out of this Babylonian system and to warn others as well.

I will also look forward to sharing about God’s divine guidance to give glory to Him and also to encourage you to know that God rewards those who seek Him diligently and He is pleased to see His works manifest in the weak.