“SINGAPORE IS IN A CRITICAL PERIOD OF TRANSITION”, reads a recent news headline. This rings true, as whether we fly or fall is dependent on government, leaders, businesses and citizens all doing their part. As Christians, we can passively sit back and find cracks to criticise, or take responsibility and proactively work with fellow Singaporeans to contribute positive actions and add Kingdom value to the national process of transformation.
Global Day of Prayer (GDOP) is a platform for Christians to make a diﬀerence, taking up God’s calling to be salt and light, to come back to our core values of humility, unity and prayer as one people called by His name. Held yearly on Pentecost Sunday, it is an opportunity to commemorate what happened more than 2,000 years ago as recorded in Acts 2, where the people all gathered in one place and experienced being filled with the Holy Spirit for the very first time in history.
This year, GDOP was held on May 19, in satellite locations across Singapore and in seven languages including English, Mandarin, Filipino, Indian dialect, Korean, Burmese and Thai. Services were held in churches of diﬀerent denominations with one common purpose: to come together as people of Christ to pray and intercede for the nation of Singapore.
I was participating at Bethel Assembly of God, one of the 17 churches in Singapore that hosted this international, interdenominational prayer meeting. The timing of the service was 7.14 pm, which is in line with the key verse for this movement, 2 Chronicles 7:14. This year’s focus was on the family and it was wonderful to see an intergenerational attendance at the service, from children to adults and the elderly.
A highlight of the service was when five church members were invited to lead the congregation in a prayer segment. There was a child to represent the children of Singapore, a youth, a young adult, an adult and an elderly, all representing their respective age groups and life stages. Prayers were heard all over the sanctuary, in both English and Mandarin, interceding for the issues faced by each demographic. Led by the pastors of Bethel Assembly and other churches, the congregation also prayed for the restoration of the family unit structure, for godly marriages to prevail, for parents and for children. As a people of God, we also gave thanks to God for his extravagant love and unfailing ways.
At the end, the focus turned to praying for a generation that fears the Lord, and for revival as we approached the Singapore’s Year of Jubilee. The Holy Spirit was truly present as we gathered to pray, just as the Scripture says in Romans 8:26-27 that “the Spirit Himself intercedes for us through wordless groans… the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God”.
Through the event, I was personally reminded that prayer is a discipline, one that we must set a proper time and place aside for, to seek God and listen for His voice. I was also reminded that prayer is a privilege; God has chosen us as His people to be able to hear from Him, and also to be a bridge to connect others to Jesus.
This was the 13th GDOP since its humble beginnings in 2000 when a South African businessman, Mr Graham Power, received an impression from God based on the Scripture verse 2 Chronicles 7:14. “If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” Today, this remains the theme verse for events held under the GDOP umbrella across more than 220 nations globally.
In Singapore, the vision is clear: through the local church, the aim of GDOP is to broaden and deepen prayer participation, so that come Jubilee Year 2015, the nationwide church of Singapore will be equipped from the ground up for the biggest prayer gathering and celebration ever held in one venue.
GDOP will return on June 8 next year. Mark your calendars for a great opportunity to come together as the body of Christ, and intercede for the nation we call home!
In my search for God’s response, I came across a quotation by the famous early 20th Century Scottish Bible teacher, Oswald Chambers, which I would like to share with you.
“The whole point of asking …….is not in getting what we want, but in knowing what God wants. …….is not in getting our way, but in following God’s way. ……..is not in having our will, but in doing God’s will.”
Jesus says, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”
Ask… Seek… Knock. String the first alphabets of these three active words together, and you get “A… S… K”, which forms the word “ASK”.
And so, be bold to ASK God for something in your life, and see how He reveals His will and His way to you in your life.
The Rev Dr Kang Ho Soon is a Pastor at Trinity Methodist Church, where he shared this testimony in a sermon on March 17, 2013.
Pictures by Bethel Assembly of God
Andrea Law is a volunteer with Methodist Message who is passionate about story-telling and travelling. By day, she is a communications professional, working in public relations. She worships at Christalite Methodist Chapel in the good company of a warm family in Christ. Andrea’s favourite tea is Earl Grey and she wants to own a pug someday.