For the first time in many many years, I stepped into a church, not for a wedding service but for service. But it was nearly not meant to be.
It was Good Friday and at the invitation of a good friend, M & I went to Lighthouse Evangelism at Tampines for their Good Friday Miracle Breakthrough service. Maybe I really have been out of the church scene for too long but things really have changed. We got there late as we had problem finding a parking lot and had to park much farther away. And when we finally reached the church, I was so surprised that it was full and people were milling outside because they couldn’t go in and the usher refused to let anybody in. That was it! At that moment, I thought this wasn’t meant to be M time to hear the Lord’s message. But our friend, who had invited us came through in the end and she and her children gave up their seats for us so in the end we managed to go in. Thanks Mich but a church turning people away? That was something I certaininly had never expect to see.
And there was a second surprise for the evening. The hall we were in was on the first floor and the service was being conducted from the church at Woodland and broadcast live. That was something new to me. I have heard about this of course but somehow it wasn’t the same looking at somebody on a video screen and singing along without a worship leader. And the thing is we were on one floor and there was another 2 floors of people looking at the same video broadcast. Which was really so unreal to me.
This wasn’t a worship service. Rather as named, it was a Miracle Breakthrough, an evangelical and healing service for the non-believer and sick. The 3rd surprise was hearing the testimony of 2 Mediacorp artises, Rayson Tan and Chen Liping. I didn’t know they were Christian. More surprising was that it was another Mediacorp artiste, Li Naxing who introduced them to Christ. The testimony was done interview style by Pastor Rony Tan and centres on their lifes before Christ and how they accepted Christ.
This was followed by a call for non-believers to stand up and accept Christ. Was M sufficiently touched by the testimony? Apparently not, caused she stayed put in her seat but in a way I am not sad. I could like it that should she one day choose to accept Christ, it will not because of some charismatic pastor and emotional feeling from the service or pressure from anybody but because she is ready and sure. Just like Chen Liping. In her sharing, she was the first one to felt the touch of the Spirit and the call of God but it was Rayson Tan, who was brought up in a traditional Taoist family and who was by their own accord very supersitious and religious who accepted Christ earlier while Chen Liping took some time to be ‘ready’.
This segment was followed by a mass ‘healing’ session. Now while I accept that God can perform miracles and healing, I am always uncomfortable by mass session like this. Maybe I should just go to a traditional church although I think those are a dying breed judging by the number of flourishing ‘modern’ chuch. Even Lighthouse, when I was a student worshiping at Jubilee Church, Lighthouse which was actually a breakaway church from Jubilee had just a handful of members worshipping in a small rental shophouse at Holland V. Look at how it has grown! Anybody know of any traditional church to recommend?