Thursday, December 11, 2014

Christmas Can be Meaningful

Last night I attended Christmas caroling at my friend's house. He is one of my closest friends in church and every year he will have an open house for Christmas. He would have his neighbours come over and there is food and fellowship aplenty. Last night it was no different. Around 12 families came together and we had our church youth group sang carols at 8pm sharp. When the host commended the youths for turning up on time I remember when I was pastor I had reminded the youths to be punctual even for carolling. I was called upon to pray twice, once for the carolling team and another time for the two cell groups that celebrated Christmas together last night. The newest pastor of the church preached a wonderful sermon on Immanuel (Matt 1,21-23). This new pastor is a Filipino, a new graduate of our Bible College. He was baptized during my last year as pastor in 2007 and now he is a pastor of the church. I am proud of him and in my prayers I prayed for him to be anointed by the Lord as he commenced ministry in church, reaching out to the street kids, mostly of Filipino descent. When I was pastor, there were only two Filipino families among the majority Kadazan-Dusuns and I made sure none of the Filipinos and Indonesians felt left out in the mainstream of church life.
Despite not being active service, I did not feel out of place. For all intents and purposes, I was like a senior pastor to my homechurch and whenever I am in their midst, I held the esteem as fitting for a servant of the Lord. I preached in the English Presbytery of Singapore Retreat last year and told the Presbyterian pastors and elders present that the greatest asset of a church leader is "moral and spiritual authority." When people recognise that in you, you will be honoured as Christ's servant even as they honour Christ whose servants we are.

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