|There was a feeling of excitement and anticipation as I stepped into the lobby of Acapella Hotel for the 42nd TRAC Women’s Convention. It was held from 22 to 24 September 2017. I had no idea what was in store for me as that was my first time attending such a convention. With the presence of two wonderful international speakers in the persons of Rev Hea Sun Kim and Rev Hikari, I knew that it was a convention not to be missed.
The theme ‘Women of Strength & Dignity’ was most apt for this convention as we wanted to remember God’s blessings on TRAC MW. As women, we play important roles in the various ministries in the church. Each of us has special gifts. We complement each other and work as one united body in God’s kingdom.
The plenary sessions were conducted in a relaxed manner. We were divided into groups for discussion on topics given. I was truly inspired by Rev Hea Sun Kim’s sharing on ‘The Seeds’. The choice is ours to make, to be a good or a bad seed. The seeds sown may take a while to blossom but they will, for God will do the rest. They will sprout and grow to become big plants, impacting the next generation.
The next interesting sharing was on ‘being connected’. Each branch is connected to a tree. Everyone has an important role but if we are connected to each other, we are stronger and more faithful to God. We can be a tree to someone else, offering shade and support in need, at the right time and at the right place.
The convention was not all about serious matters. The ‘Fun Nite’ was an opportunity to showcase the talents and creativity of our ladies. It was indeed a nite where all of us let our hair down.
In summary, the plenary sessions and the workshops were inspiring & meaningful, fun & fulfilling, informative & insightful.
Most of all, I enjoyed the active interaction among the ladies. It brought us together for friendship and inspired us for future challenges. The plenary sessions also provided much input for my soul.
Let us put our focus on the Lord! We trust in Him to give us grace & strength. I would want to live a life of worship, prayer & service. There is so much that needs to be done.
God is always at work!
To God be the Glory!
Mrs Jenny Tay (Kuantan Chapter)
The 42nd Session TRAC Methodist Women’s Convention was held in Acappella Suite Hotel, Shah Alam from 22nd- 24th September 2017. The theme of the convention is ‘Women of Strength & Dignity’ taken from Proverbs 31:25. Twelve ladies from Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya were blessed with a relaxing time, good accommodation and both physical and spiritual food. We had a time of fun, good fellowship and learning. Below are the reflections of some of the participants.
This was my first time attending the Women’s Convention. Being a working mother of four with kids from 4yr+ till 15yrs, I battled in my mind if I should sign up and go. I have my share of struggles such as having no spare time, so many things to attend to and my son’s PT3 exam that would take place in 16 days’ time. Yet I yearned to be strengthened and to gain some insight from Rev Dr. Hea Sun Kim (Korean) and Rev Hikari Kokai-Chang (Japanese) from United Methodist Church, USA. The workshop “Women at Work” and “Cultivating Life-giving Disciplines” appealed to me.
This convention has blessed me tremendously. My spirit was lifted up when Rev. Dr Hea Sun Kim affirmed that each of us is God’s unique, special and POWERFUL SEED! In the past, there were times when I felt unworthy. My family and friends deserve someone better. But through sharing from fellow sisters-in-Christ, I am assured that God did not make any mistake. We are God’s unique and powerful seeds. The two plenary session speakers were captivating and their messages spoke to our hearts.
I learnt that I must remain in God and dwell in Him; then my roots will be strong and healthy for me to stand firm and bear fruits. In order to know my God, I must spend time with Him. I need to be mentored by older women and subsequently I need to mentor younger women.
My fellow sisters, do sign up for the Methodist Women’s Convention in future. You will be blessed. There will be one next year!
“The Lord is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. The Lord upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.” (Psalm 145:13b-16)
Dr. Loo Peh Ling
From the conference, I am reminded that God is the sower, we are the seeds. However different we are in looks, His desire is for us to bear delicious fruits for His Kingdom’s glory. We are on a continuous journey of learning and growing even into our twilight years.
I particularly enjoyed the plenary session by Rev Hikari who used the analogy of Kintsukuroi, the repair of broken ceramic with gold seams, hence making the object more beautiful for being broken. God put us through trials and difficulties but these experiences need not be wasted for we can later empathize with others in their struggles. In our brokenness we can trust God to patch, heal and make us whole again. I am enriched by the interactive and vibrant sharing of many sisters during the conference. I look forward to the next MW conference.
Rev Hikari’s sharing on the appearance of Jesus to his dis- ciples in the Upper Room, has been very insightful. Jesus showed his nail-pierced hands. I was encouraged when she reminded us that God does not judge us on the basis of our pains, hurts, frustrations, difficulties or challenges as He Himself had also experienced them. Such an insight will make me sensitive to the struggles of other women when I interact with them and listen to their stories of their lives.
Everybody has a gift. A gift is something that you enjoy doing. Sometimes we think that we cannot do much as an individual; but if each of us work together we can produce much. Just like music notes. If each note stands by itself we cannot hear much effect; but if all notes play their parts a song will be produced. There is much strength in unity.
We always measure ourselves to the standard that others set. A good leader does not have to have all the good qualities: strong, smart, perfect. God does not expect us to be perfect. Abraham, Paul and the disciples were not perfect. So why do we think we are not good enough, strong enough to be a leader? This is something we have to ponder.
Everyone was asked to think through what kind of fruit one wants to bear as a child of God. We wrote down what we wanted to achieve and pasted it on the ‘tree of life’. Hopefully we will work at it and bear fruit.
Our imaginations were stretched when we had to depict Bible stories using recycled items. This enhanced our working together in a group.
The fun and laughter that we had and the lessons that we received as well as the smooth running of the programme all contributed to the success of the convention. I would say that it is when we, the participants put into practice what we have learnt or what we perceive God has called us to do that really determines the success of the convention. So let us do our part and answer the call. Be women of strength and dignity.