Nothing is Impossible with God

Hello, everyone! Here’s an overdue recap of our annual Congregational Retreat that took place on December 13-15.

Our theme for the retreat this year was “Nothing is Impossible with God”. The HMCC of Singapore leaders were sensing that we needed to really focus on the greatness of God and grow in our faith and awe of who God is as we make key transitions.

It was a powerful time just worshiping God, hearing from God’s Word, and building deeper relationships. It was also a good time just struggling through and striving forward together in our real pains, hurts, sins, hardships and making sense of God’s truth in our lives. What made this retreat unique was that I was commissioned as the site pastor by P.Seth and P.Andrew. Then, we capped off the retreat by baptizing one of our sisters, a PhD candidate from China studying at the National University of Singapore!

I was reflecting on two things from this retreat:

  1. Partnership – Members from HMCC of Singapore, HMCC of Jakarta, HMCC of Ann Arbor, HMCC alumni, and even from the future HMCC of Hong Kong were all present at the retreat. It was awesome getting to reconnect with the global HMCC family and worship God together. These are the friendships and partnerships that will continue on for years to come.
  1. Perspective – We’re in it for the long haul. One weekend away for a retreat won’t resolve all the questions or struggles we have in life. Not even a powerful encounter with God will do that in our lifetime. But we are the church who worships an everlasting, faithful God who is committed to building up His church. I am learning more and more how to be fully committed in pastoring our church here and living this life of faith together.

IMG_7427Everyone at the retreat. Nothing is impossible with God. NUTHIN’

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Our young sister in Christ, Feng Xiao, gets baptized!

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No retreat is complete without a post-retreat meal!

Prayer requests:

Job Search
Diana will begin the process of looking for jobs in Singapore in the coming weeks. Please pray for diligence and trust in God’s provisions.

My current roommate, Varoot, is from Thailand and was also serving at HMCC of Ann Arbor. He took a step of faith and moved out to Singapore to live, work, and be part of our church here. Please pray that God would provide him a job by next month!

Wedding Planning
Diana and I are trying to prepare for a life together here in Singapore. It’s a bit tricky at times communicating since we’re in different countries, but we’re believing it’s a season where we can really grow in the last stage of our singlehood. That said, please pray for our wedding preparations – there’s a lot to cover and plan for, and we just want our marriage to start off in a way that honors God, honors our families, honors one another, and our friends.
Thank you for your continued partnership in prayer. Have a great week!

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Sent

It’s been a packed week! One week ago, I was in Ann Arbor, busily packing and taking care of last minute errands before flying off from Michigan. Now I’m running errands here in Singapore, trying to settle into my new home.

I finally had some time to sit down and catch up. So, I wanted to take this opportunity and give thanks to God and for the HMCC church family.

On my last Sunday in the US, December 7, I had the privilege of being sent out by the HMCC of Ann Arbor family. I’ve known our church in Ann Arbor as my spiritual home for nearly 10 years, and it was sad to finally say goodbye. I was overwhelmed with thankfulness as I was reminded of the many people who have lovingly invested into me.

The next day, a large group of HMCC members surprised me with a farewell party. I totally didn’t expect or suspect it and I was blown away and really encouraged by everyone’s generosity and kind words of encouragement. It was a walk down memory lane as I was able to say goodbye to young men and women I’ve been able to live life with for the past 10 years in our church.

Last Day in AA

Then, I spent time with the love of my life, my beautiful fiancée, Diana. We prayed together and for one another before Diana dropped me off at the airport. I’m thankful for Diana’s love, support, prayers, partnership, friendship, and example of faith through the nearly 7 years we’ve known each other. I’ll miss her as we’ll be apart for the next several months as she finishes off her schooling and season of ministry in Ann Arbor. But I’m looking forward to being sent off together as husband and wife in 2015!

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This past Saturday through Monday, HMCC of Singapore held our annual congregational retreat. There, P.Andrew Jun from HMCC of Jakarta joined us with a few other brothers and church leaders. Together with P.Seth, both pastors who played significant roles in my life commissioned me as the site pastor by praying over me and our church. It was a sweet moment being set apart and sent by HMCC and being received by our Singapore church family. I’m thankful for these older mentors in my life who tirelessly invested into me and helped me through key decisions. I’m thankful for our church family in Singapore for graciously receiving me and for the privilege of serving them.

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In 2005, as a brand new Christian, I really wanted to be sent out on mission for God. In my immaturity, I didn’t value being sent by a local church in close partnership. Now, I’m thankful that I have this immense privilege of being sent out by HMCC to pastor our church in Singapore. I get to be part of this greater God-given mission of transforming lost people into Christ’s disciples, who will then transform the world. I’m thankful.

I’ll write more with an update on our retreat and some prayer requests later this week!

T-6 days

Time

Hello everyone!

P Joe and I (Diana) are currently in Austin, Texas for our church leadership summit.  It’s been a great time updating and praying with the other staff of the various church sites in the US. The people in the room have been pastors & friends who have mentored us, led us on missions, counseled us, and partnered with us in our personal relationships with God.  It’s a privilege to spend personal time with the people who have invested so much time/energy on us, so that we could invest in those around us.  We’ve enjoyed our time to dream and brainstorm together about the future of our churches…we’ve also equally enjoyed our times of eating the awesome food here! Our hearts and stomachs are incredibly full.

It’s hard to believe that P Joe will be leaving in less than a week. It’s funny how time works.  When I’m really nervous before an exam or sermon, or sitting through a really long lecture, it feels like time inches by.  But when I look at our nearing departure date to Singapore, it feels like time has quickly slipped by.  I’m looking ahead to my last 5 months in the States and I’m realizing that I need to be intentional with each day in preparation for closing things out here and getting ready for Singapore.

Some prayer requests as we get ready for P Joe’s near departure (*tear) and mine coming ahead:

  1. Good good-bye: As P Joe gets ready for Singapore, please pray that he closes out his time here well. It’s always sad to move on to a new place, but it’s also really exciting! Pray that he leaves encouraging those around him, and leaving encouraged himself
  2. Job search: I’m about to finish up finals this semester and once my finals end, my job search shall commence! Please pray for God’s provisions in the job search (I’ll share more in a future post, but please pray for now!)
  3. Leadership Summit: Please pray for our leadership summit as it continues for the next few days.  Pray for unity across the churches, a renewed heart to lead, and a fresh intimacy with God.

Thanks for your partnership everyone! I regularly look at our prayer group sign up and am blown away by your support from near and far.

Much love,

Diana