Friday, 19 April 2013

Heavenly Hope

Hello All,
Today we will be taking a break from 'The Prodigal God' poem series which would be resumed the following week.
We are going to look at a topic which most Asian cultures would consider a conversational taboo.
Death is a reality that each and every one of us must face and yet it seems so distant and abstract until it takes away a loved one, a relative, a friend or an acquaintance.
Today’s poem is dedicated to my cousin brother, Richard Khaw, who passed away from brain tumour on 17th April 2013.

Heavenly Hope
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling (18th April 2013)
Dedicated to my cousin, Richard Khaw, who has gone home to the Lord on 17th April 2013

He has passed from this world and is now with the Lord
The race he has finished, he now claims his reward
Of eternal life, the deposit guarantee
Of every child of God for all eternity

His courageous fight of faith was commendable
God has been sustaining him in all his battles
His loved ones in Christ strengthened him in his struggles
Throughout his prolonged illness, his faith grew stronger

For now we mourn for his death but not without hope
We pray for God's comfort to help his loved ones cope
He has departed and left to a better place
There will be a day when we'll see him face to face

Points for Reflection:
For to me [Apostle Paul] to live is Christ, and to die is gain. (Philippians 1:21)
In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:13-14)
He [God] will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:4)
·         The most comforting truth about being a Christian is we do not have to fear death.
·         For those whom God has chosen as his beloved children have been saved by Christ’s atoning death on the cross and are guaranteed an inheritance of eternal life in heaven.
·         Do you fear death? If you have received Jesus as your Lord and Saviour then you do not need to fear death anymore.
·         Have you grieved or witnessed others mourning for the death of a fellow Christian? It is painful to lose someone you care about and there will be a period of grief. But we grieve with a deep-seated sense of joy and hope knowing that our loved ones have gone to heaven, a place with no more pain or suffering.

 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14)
·         While we are living on this earth, our ultimate goal in life should not comprise worldly pursuits and ambitions but it should be on the heavenly hope which God has predestined for us.
·         We are to live for the glory of God and love others as Christ first loved us.
·         Throughout my cousin’s battles with brain tumour, he never ceased trusting in God and his eyes were always fixed on the hope that he had in Christ.
·         Do you have loved ones or friends who are struggling with terminal illnesses and are finding it hard to continue trusting in God? If so, why don’t you regularly encourage them to fix their eyes on the prize and remember them in your prayers?

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me [Jesus Christ]. In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? (John 14:1-2)