In the name of Jesus, I testify. I am Sis. Stefanie Shee from Bayan Bahru Church.
The previous two articles described two blessings from God, the third blessing will be explained here:
Thank the grace of the Lord, around a week of recuperation, my dad and I recovered. However, later both of us suffered from one of its side effects which is arthralgia (joint pains). In the morning, I will wake up with stiff fingers that hurt when in contact with water, I could no longer carry heavy loads, I had problems even with the simplest activities like driving, and writing and sometimes I will even need help opening a bottle cap. I never felt so feeble and fragile. But what saddens me the most was when I realized I had difficulties playing the piano. Then I remember, in the past, I never volunteered to be a pianist in the church, I rejected the opportunity given. I felt I wasn’t good enough, there are others who are better and the mindset I had was I would play only when there is none available. I reckon I still have ample time and I can do this much later, and now in this state, I regretted. But at the same time, I didn’t have the courage to seek His healing. Since I was the one who forgo this opportunity at first, I no longer have the right to reclaim this position again. In my prayer, I sought His forgiveness and merely told the Lord that I regretted it and that if only I could turn back time. Miraculously after this prayer, a few days later I realized my fingers were no longer stiff and it doesn’t hurt like it usually does. I understand then that my Lord is giving me a second chance to amend my mistakes. To some, this may be just a coincidence and it can be scientifically justified: I am still young, my body is capable of a quick recovery. Regardless of the different perspectives, I guess what matters most was that God is providing a second chance, and I thank God for it. Now it is for me to decide to either treasure or give up this second chance. Up till today, my father suffers from arthralgia; my relatives who have contracted this virus too suffered from it to the point that their joints became swollen, and I occasionally still do experience it although just temporarily. The pathophysiology of the chikugunya virus till now has yet to be explicitly known and nobody knows what is the exact duration of the arthralgia will last. Some reports mention that it could last from a few months to a few years and I really don’t know whether will it return again as I age. As I look at my father and my relatives, I realized that I am just living on borrowed time.
“…What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15
My beloved brothers and sisters, I believe this pandemic has taught us that time is not under our control. Let us boast about nothing but cherish the opportunity to serve. I often hear, especially from the youths sayings like “I am not talented in playing the piano”, “there are others who are better”, ”why me?”, “I can do it later” etc. But if you have the courage to record yourself playing the piano on social media, will you not have the courage to play for God as well? If you have the time to listen and learn how to play pop songs, can you also spare a little time to listen and learn to play the hymns of praise? My greatest weakness was sight-reading, and that was why I didn’t have the courage to serve as a pianist. But I realize I did have a good hearing, I could remember tunes well. Since God has given me this strength, I all the more should use it to complement my weakness instead of making it as an excuse not to serve and this was my mistake. In order to complement my weakness, I would need to put in extra effort, listen to the hymns frequently, and practice a little bit more. Many a time we gave up not because we thought we own not that talent, but because we were unwilling to put in the effort. We compare ourselves with those who are truly talented and we came to the conclusion that God didn’t give us that specific gift so we can excuse ourselves. Yet I believe this God is fair, I am sure He will provide everyone an equal share of strengths and weaknesses, and it is up to us to perceive how we should use our strengths to complement our weaknesses. If there are only strengths without weaknesses, imagine how proud we will end up being without remembering who our Creator is and not to even mention relying upon Him. And if God is with you in this ministry, what is there to be afraid of? Is His love not sufficient enough to be a motivation? Shall we wait till it’s too late and only we start regretting it?
“Working together with Him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For He says, in a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you…”~2 Corinthians 6:1-2
May all glory be given unto His Name.