The Herald Weekly Vol XVI : 2

1. A Milestone for Herald B-P Church

Last Sunday was a milestone for our church. All the loans for the payment of Herald’s three units at Guilin Building were finally to be paid. Praise the Lord for His provision!

The needed sum of $35,000 which came in last Sunday was confirmed after our treasurer, Vivian Wong, shared the Old Testament account of a widow living in Syria. This widow gave up her last jar of oil and final jug of flour to bake a piece of bread for prophet Elijah to eat in the days of a severe drought (1 Kings 17:7-24). Because of her sacrifice, the widow was able to survive the hard times with God’s non-stop supply of oil and flour for bread making till the end of the drought. Dness Wong’s words of encouragement on giving to God gave impetus to more giving in the past three years. More members and friends were much encouraged to support our Building Fund.

If you are familiar with Herald BPC’s history, you would know that the church started with only $50 after our first service held in a sister’s condominium in Marine Parade Road. After we had rented a unit on the second floor of Guilin Building for one and a half years, the question of owning our own place of worship came most urgently. By God’s providence, we sealed an agreement with the former owner of our present 3 units to acquire these premises. The three units that totalled 3,400 sq ft were bought in 2005 for $1.45 million at $420 per sq ft. These units are now worth 3 to 4 times more than what they were worth 12 years ago.

We thank God for giving the vision and foresight to Herald’s pastor and leaders at a time when Herald was founded, and when we had nothing of our own. Even the impossibility of obtaining a bank loan was overcome by God’s grace and mercies. We were able to secure a bank loan of $900,000 even when we had nothing to offer as a security. Despite the doubts which floated around us, nothing is impossible with God!

With only 1% for the purchase deposit, the Executive Committee took courage based on the promise of God who said in Jesus’ words, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matt 6:33). God’s hand was with us again when a Christian Indonesian friend of the church heard of our need, and donated $300,000 to our Building Fund, plus $100,000 for all the renovations and extension. Another sister in our Mandarin congregation said that she wanted us to purchase a 11-seater van to fetch our elderly folks to and from their homes to church and vice versa. She contributed $5,000 for the purchase of the van. When the Indonesian friend heard of our need, she paid for the rest of the payment for the van. Again, God was good to us at Herald.

Herald took 8 years to complete payment to the bank when our members joined hands to make interest-free loans of about $300,000 to our Building Fund. Hence, within these three years, with trust in the Lord and everyone contributing as the Lord prospered us, we have finally cleared all our loans on the first Lord’s Day of 2018. May the Lord’s name be praised!

2. Day of Prayer 2018

It was the norm in the past to have the Day of Prayer on the first day of the year. This year we decided to move the Day of Prayer to the first Sunday of the year so that more could join us for prayer. We thank God that nearly 50 members and friends stayed to pray after the Tea Fellowship.

In 7 or more groups, members and friends prayed for the needs of the church, of families and individuals. Many were moved to tears when they shared of how God answered their prayers in 2017, protected them and provided for every need. Many also shared personal prayer requests for themselves and their loved ones. Many are concerned for their health, studies, work or businesses, illness of loved ones and other concerns.

The time of prayer together has helped us to know the needs of others in the church. It has also enabled us to be united in prayer for the needs and growth of Herald. We may pray in tears, but we will surely reap with joy when God hears and answers our prayers. God created us, and knows our every need. He knows what is best for us, and will give us strength to cope with life’s daily challenges. So let us continue to uphold each other and the church in prayer.

When we have the next time of prayer on another Sunday, I pray that many more will stay and join us as we approach God’s throne of grace together.

3. Family Worship at the Tang’s Home

Family worship is not new, but it will be emphasized more at Herald BPC. This is to encourage Christian families to conduct worship service in the home. The father, the head of the family will lead in the worship, setting an example for the children in spiritual matters. The family can invite church members and friends to their home to participate in a time of singing of hymns, Bible reading and a time of devotion. The service may conclude with refreshment and fellowship. The entire service should not last more than one and a half hours.

Matthew and Gracia Tang invited the pastor to conduct their family worship service on 3 Jan, the first Wednesday of the year at their home in Clementi West. The purpose was for the family to worship the Lord, and to pray for their first-born, Micaiah’s entry into the National Service two days after that. The church was invited to join them, and some members and friends joined in to rejoice with Micaiah as he came of age to serve in the army. The experienced ones gave him lots of advice, and how to be alert throughout his two years of NS. Several contributed food for the refreshments after the meeting. Two days later, at the Pasir Ris Bus Interchange, Uncle Sam and I prayed for the Lord’s presence, protection and promise to be with Micaiah, his parents, brother Gabriel, and his grandparents. Deborah and Timothy Neam were also there to send him off for his training at Pulau Tekong.

This is the first time a Family Worship has been conducted in relation to our boys entering the army. We pray that this will not be the last. We hope that more parents will follow this example, and we look forward to more of this activity in the near future.

4. Growth at the Chinese Mainland Fellowship (MCF)

Tuesday night is something which many Chinese workers living in the vicinity of Guilin Building look forward to. The MCF ministry has been ongoing for the last eight years. In recent years, it is managed mainly by PA Ee Meng, with help from brother Sam Koh who contributes two extra items of food for the workers’ dinner. Sister Cindy Chua joins in the singing and helps in other ways too. The MCF has been a blessing to these hardy workers who are here to build private and public homes, as well as other buildings. They all come to our sanctuary on the 4th floor as early as 6.45 pm and have their meal. Then they congregate to sing spiritual songs and hymns with one of their brethren leading and praying. A few also have been able to play the piano, though some have returned to China. Speakers like Elder Su, Rev Thomas Koh and others deliver God’s Word to encourage them in their Christian living, while they labour daily to send money to their families in China. We thank God that a few have accepted Christ, and got baptized before returning home. One has even gone on to Bible School. One man who could not come for worship on Sunday came three weeks ago. He was so moved to re-dedicate his life to the Lord. Praise the Lord!

We used to have more than 50 workers in the past, but many have returned to China because of a lower demand for them. We thank God that the number of workers has recently increased from 20 to about more than 30 attending the night meeting. Sometimes, one to three ladies also join the fellowship (these are working in other service industries in Singapore). God has provided for the MCF all these years – food, pianists, helpers, preachers and teachers. If some of you are available on Tuesday nights, why not drop in and join us. Come and join us for dinner first, before fellowshipping with these believers.

As we avail ourselves to God’s work in Herald, let us continue to look to God for wisdom, and be thankful for all His provision in the year ahead.

Pastor Bob Phee

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