Good evening and warm greetings to everyone! I am most grateful to be part of this “COMMUNITY OF KINDNESS” this evening.
Mr Jacob Lee, Chair of the CAC MCRD; President Ezra Kok of the CAC, Church pastors, leaders, MCRD members, esteemed friends from other church organisations, members of the press corp, church members and supporters: we gather to celebrate in THANKSGIVING unto Almighty God all the good works that He has inspired and enabled to be accomplished by CAC MCRD BANTUAN COVID-19 since the Pandemic began to be earnestly felt in our land from the 18 March 20 MCO lockdown.
The MCM Family community, from our local churches and individuals in our Annual Conferences in East and West Malaysia, have responded to the needs caused by the Covid-19 pandemic especially when it hit “the LEAST” in our country and abroad. Of particular concern is the B40, migrant communities, the homeless and the housebound and elderly. The Lord Jesus said in NIV Matthew 25:40 - “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’
In the throes of all these, the CAC MCRD, has stepped up and inadvertently became the focal point of meeting the many urgent and immediate medical, hospital and human needs that arose. Our Methodist Church in Malaysia Family as a whole contributed to meet the various needs; we praisethe Lord that the CAC MCRD became our major agency and “AID” flagship sailing in the unpredictable and very stormy Covid-19 Pandemic Sea!
This Covid-19 Pandemic shattering upheaval that reached almost every corner of the globe, has forcibly led God’s Church and the world – to reflect deeply about life, creation, survival and sustainability of our world – that we have hitherto, TAKEN FOR GRANTED! In this enforced and unprecedented EXPERIENCE of a deadly and hitherto “without a VACCINE to counter it” situation, very many have at least realised at least 2 TRUTHS!
#1: “Our SMALLNESS REMINDED, GOD’S GREATNESS REDISCOVERED!” The world grudgingly realised how little CONTROL humankind has over the GLOBAL STAGE, DESTINY and FUTURE of planet earth. Overnight – stadiums, entertainment outlets, financial hubs, mega malls, schools, universities etc are shut down save the hospitals, police stations, fire brigades, homes and residences. The animal world repossessed the territories that were theirs originally! An unseen microscopic “giant” has felled our technologically, Artificial Intelligence & scientifically sophisticated and advanced world that we are so proud of!!!
#2: “While our hearts have hardened, God’s heart is “Unburdened!” God’s heart of love, mercy and compassion is never more manifested among “THE LEAST” than in this season as God’s people are moved to step out in love to reach the hungry, starving, housebound and sick! More than the chatter about face mask, temperature taking, physical distancing – the churches all over the world recovered their ministries of COMPASSION and MERCY AFTER GOD”S OWN HEART! Tonight’s CAC MCRD BANTUAN COVID-19 Thanksgiving Dinner, 7 pm Tropicana Gardens Mall is abundant testimony to this renewal in the Church.
#3: “When God’s people interceded, Malaysia by God’s mercy was blessed!” It is the prayers of God’s people along with many other “Ninehvites” [as in the Jonah account] who turned to God for mercy that our rates of infection and death from the Coronavirus or Covid-19 remained comparatively MINIMAL or NOMINAL when compared to other nations.
HENCE, all the more we should do all we can for the MOST AFFECTED by the COVID-19 pandemic. Let us never forget the unchanging absolute CERTAINTY OF GOD’S WORD in the midst of the UNCERTAINTIES of the WORLD! Some of these key words in the Bible are:
#1: KJV Matthew 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. 8 All these are the beginning of sorrows
#2: ESV Proverbs 19:17
Whoever is generous [kind] to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will repay him for his deed.
#3: ESV Proverbs 28:27
Whoever gives to the poor will not want, but he who hides his eyes will get many a curse.
#4: ESV Proverbs 11:25
Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.
#5: NIV 2 Corinthians 9:8
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
Let us move on from strength to strength in serving the Good Shepherd through works of mercy!
Bishop Dr Ong Hwai Teik
The Methodist Church