Praise the Lord for the church life! Praise the Lord for growing up in the church life, in a Christian family! Here, we are so cared for, protected, and shepherded in what the Lord is doing today – the practical church life. Whether “we like it or not”, we will go to the meetings with our parents and enjoy the Lord! Eventually, at one point, we all have to go either to university or get a job, and we will be put into more and more situations where we will have to actively choose the Lord and the church life. What about then? Will “our parents’ God” become “our God”? Below is a short testimony regarding this from sister Elaine – her first semester at university / college.
My first university semester was my first real semester of living a normal Christian church life. During high school, it was easy to simply follow my parents in attending church meetings, conferences and etc, and then after the meetings, go back to living my life the way I wanted. Basically, I almost “lived a double life” – one life at school, and one life “at church”.
However, upon entering university and living in a house of 12 other sisters, I no longer had my parents to moderate my church life, and my church life and school life soon became one life. The Christian Students club on campus needed us freshmen, the face of the spear, to be the ones reaching out to new ones on campus. Thus, my school life and church life had to become one life, as now they were intermingled for the first time in my life.
At first, I willingly jumped into all the gospel outreach activities, feeling quite burdened for the gospel outreach. However, soon afterwards I felt overwhelmed, exhausted, and frustrated when there was little to no positive responses. These were not signs of life and peace, but rather of death and distress.
I finally broke down in tears and frustration one Sunday morning. This allowed the Lord to touch my heart while a fellow older sister fellowshipped with and shepherded me. I soon realized that I had been working out of my self, with my own burdens – doing things apart from the Lord. Although outwardly it appeared that I was doing good things for the Lord, but inwardly, I was the source, which was why I was so frustrated. I had replaced the Lord and lost my first love.
The Lord says in Matthew 11:30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” How can the Lord’s burden by easy and light to us? Simply by taking Him as our source and our strength. This is when I realized how important it was to spend personal and intimate time with the Lord so we can be one with Him the rest of the day. If our morning time is spoiled and not spent with the Lord, the rest of our day will be toilsome and weary. However, just waking up to the Lord, even GROANING His name, this can be our strength and supply for the entire day.
It was also encouraging to know that outwardly when we go out for gospel outreach, it may seem that we are going by ourselves, but this is not true. The entire Body is going with us, because the entire Body is praying for us and we stand with the Body. This is also why it is so important to be built up with the other brothers and sisters.
These are things I could never have truly learned and experienced outside of university, and I am so thankful the Lord has revealed these things to me in my first semester. Lord, go on further and deeper in each one of us and in each one of our campuses to gain our campuses for Your testimony and return!