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Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Giving a helping hand

Recently, I have been bringing a brother in Christ to Church after he has stopped coming to Church for some time. This brother got a severe stroke and was hospitalized back in 2015 and was near fatal. It was a miracle he survived according to doctors but unfortunately he was paralyzed on his left side of his body and was greatly disappointed with what just has happened. He was a great guitar and bass player. In addition to that, he was on his way to get married after getting engaged the same year. The engagement did not last and he is now single... at home... and discouraged.

There were times where people tried to reach out to him and bring him to Church and was not successful. I myself have visited him quite a number of times to give him comfort and show that we still love him. As the months passed by, people stopped visiting him and just moved on in life and began to work with other people as this brother was still discouraged and full of questions why the bad things has happened to him.

The year is 2017 of the month of October... and I still had him in my mind... By this time, he has had a car accident too after trying to drive around the highway wanting to make an effort to do something independently on his own. I visited him again determined to bring him to Church.

We talked... He talked, I listened and I talked he listened... The conversation was about to end up the same way it has always ended up... But, some wisdom kicked in to me to say something different this time.

"I still remember you picked me up to Church when I was still learning to drive a car"

"I would be happy to see you at Church and I believe the Pastor would too."

I do understand that we go to Church in focus of Jesus Christ our risen Lord... But, something in that words were some wisdom in a human level relationship. A love between Christian brothers.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.

The Book of John
Chapter 13
Verses 34 and 35
The Holy Bible

There was just a breakthrough in those words just made him say "Okay, I'll come to Church." and he did come with me to Church. In the beginning it was a bit overwhelming for him but as the week goes by, he began to have a smile on his face again being surrounded by Church people who does care for him and gives him support. He began to break away from self pity and told me he was going to go for another round of rehab to get his movement back. HE IS NOT GIVING UP!

Although it's just been a few weeks, but i believe as he keeps coming to Church and believing God for  a continuous work in his life... He's going to be restored in the Kingdom of God even better stronger than before. Bad things might of happened and the effects of that stroke might of damaged him... BUT Jesus Christ our Lord is a redeeming working God and He is indeed our Savior, Redeemer and Healer to SAVE us and restore us and presented unto God, The Father. What the devil has planned for evil GOD can turned it to GOOD and bring a blessing into his life.

I'm looking forward of what will transpire in the coming weeks and I'll keep him in my prayers!

Therefore, if there's that struggling brother out there who needs a helping hand... Just a kind sincere word could help them and it goes a long way. Love one another in brotherly love as The Lord has commanded us as Christians. His Words Never fails.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Why I left Buddhism and embraced Christianity. My conversion story.

I was born in 1987 January 21st. To my knowledge, I was born around 8.00 p.m. and my dad decided not to give me a Chinese name nor does he wants me to bring forward the family name "Ng". So, he named me Albrecht Patrick Raphael.

Growing up in a family that holds no specific religious beliefs and full of traditional "grandpa & grandma superstition" really made me confused from a very early age; Plus, enrolling in a Catholic Primary School adds up to the confusion because I found out my friends were going to Sunday School at the Catholic Church. I never heard of such things until I was seven years old.

My great grandparents from both my dad and mom side has a history of being witches and warlocks, I'm not kidding... My great grandmother was the village Bobohizan or a "practitioner of white magic"... In short... a witch. My Grandpa's brother (mother's side) was a warlock who calls demons to possess people (his followers) and speaking through them. On my father's side of the family, was another level or weirdness... My uncle is an Islam Bomoh also known as a witch-doctor, My great grandmother was a demon-possessed-pagan-tree-worshiper who "bathes" herself under the moon when there is a full moon in the sky. Since I was a young lad about 7 years old I was already exposed to these crafts. wearing charms, worshiping little idol statues three times per day and burning incense in the house with my dad to smoke some charms every Thursday night every week.

There was a point in my life where I actually wanted to find God... It started at a very young age of 6 and the thirst to find the spiritual things was just in me and driving me to try out all sorts of things. I was really a open-minded person where I accept all religion to be true and having being raised up in Malaysia, I naturally hated Israel and laugh at Christians for not burning paper money for their dead ancestors like we were doing every year. After I started my college life and my university life (that was at the age of 17 years old to 23 years of age) I began to immerse myself to the religion of Buddhism.

I told myself "I don't want to just be called a Buddhist, I really want to become a Buddhist". Therefore, I started to read the Sutras and study the life of Buddha himself, clarify the confusion between Taoism and Buddhism in Malaysia in my head and also go to actual temples to pay respect to Buddha. In my confusion, I still prayed to little idol statues and kept learning about teaching of Buddhism and having a life of being carefree while being confident of my future in the afterlife.

Even though I had religion and knowledge about various other religion and other people's beliefs I had a few problems in life...

1. I was fearful of "ghosts" and "spirits".
2. Being overly religious and 'spiritual' made me an extremist to the point where I would mock other so-called-Buddhists when they don't know Buddha was born in Nepal.
3. I was sooooo superstitious and kept having nightmares.
4. The sense of guild and condemnation was always in my heart whenever I would sin or do something that I know I shouldn't do (example: having sex outside of wedlock a.k.a. to fornicate)
5. I was always angry and have a problem with managing anger.

These are just a short list of many many many other problems I was facing in life at that point. But, I am just highlighting these to give you all a picture what was my life like before my conversion towards The Lord Jesus Christ.

How did it all started??

Fast forward to December 2010. I was so into Buddhism, I was not content and I found myself practicing witch-craft and calling upon demon spirits to communicate with them to seek spiritual answers. I got more confused and having more health problems as the road to seek for answers was getting more and more intense.

One day, my mom came back home and met me talking about how she met this lady and heard about Jesus and went to Church and receiving Jesus and has this change in her heart. I was intrigued to go to meet this person and listen to what she has to say about this Jesus. I wanted to find spiritual power and reckoned that this lady can teach me some stuff about spiritual stuff. So, I met her and her husband. Her husband was a decent middle aged man, had a smile on his face and began to share to me about Jesus. After awhile of listening to them both telling me about The Lord Jesus Christ, we began to pray. And at that moment I began to manifest demonically... to the point of speaking in a different tone of voice that I reckon was not myself but a demon speaking through me. I vaguely remembered what transpired during that day but some key moments were still on my mind. One of them was me being so afraid that I don't want to belong to this demon anymore nor would I want to be dragged to hell by this demon. Secondly, they tried to pray for me and casting out demon in The Name of Jesus but to no avail... UNTIL... I prayed a prayer, read some Bible verses that was shown to me by the man and basically just receiving The Lord Jesus Christ as my Lord. Believing that He could deliver me from the grasp of the demon and trusting that He can save me from the turmoil and manifestation that I was going through...

The Lord Jesus Christ saved me that day.

I was converted in a short period of time.

I knew it was just not a change of religion.

I had received Salvation.

Peace entered into my heart like never before.

A sense of joy to the point of having no more fear came upon me.

I didn't want to lose Salvation nor did I want to let go of this Jesus Whom I just clanged to.

I knew from that day I was a believer of The Lord Jesus Christ and a Christian.

It was not a situation where: before people calls me a Buddhist now people are calling me a Christian... No... It  is like this... I was changed from the inside out. I know on that very day, I have found God and I need not look further into other religions to seek for Him.

I wanted to read the Bible.

I wanted to know more about The Lord Jesus Christ.

I began to tell people about my conversion.

Me and my mom threw the idol statues out from the house and got rid of all the books on the teaching of Buddha.

Burned all the witches and warlocks charms passed down from generation to generation.

You see, I wasn't a skin deep Buddhist, I went overboard with my pursuit to know Buddha and at the same time I was tied-up with family traditions, superstitions and demonic rituals. But I have received The Lord Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior... At the same time, turned away from all the religion of Buddhism and threw out all the confusing ideas and beliefs of my ancestors... Calling it sin and repenting of it all. I ran towards Jesus and declared myself a follower of The Lord Jesus Christ.

I was never again so fearful of everything about ghosts and spirits anymore. I was never again having uncontrolled anger to the point of having bad health. My confusion was cleared up and my soul was healed of all the damaged being done throughout all the years of being religious.

I am a Christian.

and I declare to you.

The Lord Jesus Christ died for sinners like you and me. He was crucified, becoming a substituted for us upon that cross that killed Him... He was buried and the tombed was shut tight... But on the third day He rose up from the dead and appeared to eye-witnesses to the point that His followers began to spread the Gospel and declaring that Jesus is alive and are willing to die for their Faith. Jesus died for our sins so that we would not have to pay for our own sins in hell for eternity. We could place our Faith in Him and repent of our own sins and turning to Him to save us.

Just like I did... You can receive Him... as Lord and Savior...

Just like He saved me... He can save you...

This is my testimony. I left Buddhism plus all those other confusing stuffs and embraced Christianity.