Ash Wednesday and Lent for a Pentecostal church

Ash Wednesday was on Wednesday 6 March 2019. It marked the beginning of Lent – a period of 40 days of preparation for Good Friday and Easter.
The church tradition is that this period of 40 days, similar to Jesus 40 days of fasting, is for soul care – taking time to slow down, reflect, pray, fast and repent. The period of seeking God would lead to personal revival and ascend with a church celebration of Christ’s resurrection power in Easter.

As a Pentecostal I am not used to observing Lent. It was Trinity Theological College that exposed me to this. It took a long time for me to appreciate the values of having a rhythm to the church year. Observing Lent, Good Friday and Easter, and Pentecost are good practices that embeds the centrality of Christ in the church’s worship and plans. May I encourage you to do some of the following as the Lord leads:

PRAY
Give a half day to God in reflection and prayer.
Pray for unsaved family members, friends, neighbours and colleagues.
Pray in tongues for 15 minutes each day for a whole week.
Meditate on the passages of the last week of Jesus and use them as a springboard of prayer.
FAST
Skip a meal and use that time to humble yourself before God, acknowledging your shortcomings, powerlessness and need of Him.
Go vegetarian for a week and give up sweet stuff.
Fast from negative words and complaining and gossiping.
Fast from social media for a whole day.
REPENT
Seek forgiveness and forgive where necessary.
Speak kind and appreciative words to family members.
Repent from worrying and entrust specifically your burdens to God.
Visit and honour your aged parents or grandparents.
Listen to someone’s story without judging, or interrupting or offering solutions.
Pay attention to those who may need your help.

Have a meaningful, reviving, enlightening Lent. How would you like to use Lent for your own soul-care?

Jesus I Come by Awaken Generation

Awaken Generation’s “Jesus I Come” is a melodious and inspiring worship song. The tune is inviting and appealing and easy to follow. The more you hear and sing it, the more it grows on you. The lyrics are captivating, and expresses God’s loving invitations to us to follow Him more closely and deeply, and our loving response.

I believe that if it had been written and sung by Bethel Church or Hillsong it would have been much more popular and widespread in usage. It’s a pity that a song of such high quality and production does not develop a following it deserves. I pray that more churches would use this song. “All to Jesus I surrender” and “I surrender”(Hillsong) now has a genuine contender that expresses our response of surrender to God in a lovely modern tune,

Check it out here:

Missions Sunday: three congregations, one shared focus on missions

This 2019 Missions Sunday brought together the English, Mandarin and Deaf congregations together. It was a pleasure to see the three congregations together. I was proud of the co-operation and effort each congregation put in for their presentations of their mission work. the presentations were interesting and later pastor Thomas Tan, the speaker made the observation that all three congregations have works involving outreach to Myanmese people groups.

DFF congregational pastor Barnabas Phua sharing about deaf missions.

One of the highlights was seeing the deaf congregation pastor Barnabas sharing about the great need of the deaf people in South East Asia. He has been involved in missions trips in Myanmar, Laos, Indonesia and Malaysia.

A second highlight was to hear Jean Lim share about her passion to work with the Thais and Myanmese in Maesot area in Thailand. I am thrilled to see young people venturing by faith to serve in missions.

I left feeling wonderful about this first time combined missions Sunday. We ought to have done this years ago. It’s a regret. Nevertheless, we can start a new tradition henceforth.