The Next 50 Years

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Singapore celebrates her 50th birthday.

The 50 years has passed with much accomplished in one generation. The question to ask ourselves now is WHAT’S NEXT?

“Now when David had served God’s purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep; he was buried with his ancestors and his body decayed.”

Acts13:36

All of us will live and die like David. But not everyone lives to serve and fulfill God’s purpose in his own generation.

Today, will you and I serve the purpose of God in your own generation?

Thankful for my wife

IMG-20150511-WA0002Since late last year, God revealed to me that my season in Viet Nam would be coming to an end. And that the next chapter is to return to Singapore. Hence, I had made plans to return to Singapore next year.

However, God had other plans. He orchestrated a job opportunity for me that will allow me to return to Singapore much earlier as I would have anticipated. In addition, the new company was willing to wait out my 3-month resignation notice!

Thus, next month I would be returning to Singapore to start my new job.

This new development also prompted my wife to look for her job in Singapore. And recently she received an offer to a job that would further her career as a professional counsellor. She begins her new job in a week’s time! Praise God!

Thus far, it has been amazing to see how God is working ALL things for us to return to Singapore with such ease! Too much ease that we cannot deny we are in the will of God. So that is assuring that we know we walking with Him. And that’s all that truly matters to me- that we are following Jesus!

I’m also thankful to God for my wife.

Without her love and support, I would not be in Viet Nam for the last 4 years. My wife demonstrated her love for me when she resigned from her dream job which she was then a school counsellor. And she did that so that I could pursue the vision and purpose of God for my life!

I must admit I have often took her for granted and her sacrifice. That’s why I’m so delighted that she now has this new job where she can continue to pursue her vision and purpose of God in her life from where she had left off.

In our next season, I believe it is now my turn to rally behind her and to see to it that my wife becomes all that she is destined to be and achieved in Christ!

 

Viet Nam’s 40th year of reunification

Today, Viet Nam celebrates her 40th year of reunification- the day that South Vietnam fell under the Northern regime and re-uniting the country under one communist rule after 21 years of separation.

I believe this 40-year milestone as a re-united nation is significant for Viet Nam from a spiritual perspective.

Learning from Israel

Israel spent 40 years in the wilderness after being released from Egyptian slavery. That Israel led by Moses could have entered the Promised Land much sooner but due to their stiff-necked and disobedience, God withheld that from happening.

Before, that’s how I saw it. I interpreted how God was using that period of time in the wilderness to discipline the Israelites and in a sense punishing them for their disobedience. Although this is somewhat true, but I discovered later that what I saw was just a glimpse of who God is and His intentions.

Looking at this episode with New Testament lens, I discovered how God’s love and grace was in abundance towards the Israelites. I saw God’s real intention for withholding the Promised Land from the Moses-generation Israelites was because He was protecting them from total annihilation.

God knew that the enemies that were residing on the Promised Land would have easily defeated the Israelites if He had led them to cross over. Those Israelites then were not ready to do battle with external enemies as they were battling with their inner enemies.

Hence, it is truly grace that kept them from entering the Promised Land.

God’s grace for Viet Nam

Similarly, God loves Viet Nam and His grace has protected and guided this nation this past 40 years in spite of her disobedience and weaknesses.

Although Viet Nam has flourished materially, but instead of improving lives the reverse is more true with other social issues such as divorces, youth delinquency, vices and etc… arising as quick to destroy its society and social fabric.

Interestingly, Israel then even in the wilderness was also materially better off. They left Egypt with their gold and silver loot surrendered by the Egyptians. However sadly, this resulted to idolatry, self-gratification and self-vanity of misplacing their confidence and trust on their own efforts.

Likewise, the past 40 years of reunification for Viet Nam has been a journey of ‘wilderness’ and battling of their inner enemies of finding their identity as a unified country and people.

Without identity, one can never truly grow and achieve significance. At best, drift along and achieve mere survival. Because one’s vision, purpose, values and confidence stem from one’s identity. And discovering one identity ultimately leads one to know God as the Creator and Source.

Hence, the past 40 years for Viet Nam has been a bumpy ride of finding her identity towards her journey with God. All these trials, necessary in preparation for the ‘crossing over’.

The future for Viet Nam

Like Israel, with their new found freedom, the Moses-generation or pioneering generation of Viet Nam carried many emotional and spiritual ‘baggages’ that had prevented them to truly know God and follow Him towards progressing as a nation.

However, His love and promises to this nation remain unchanged!

In His great grand scheme of things, God has prepared and is raising up a new generation of believers with the ‘Joshua’ mantle and mettle to lead His people to truly know God and follow Him.

The future of this nation now hinges on this Joshua-generation of Viet Nam to cross over into the ‘Promised Land’ and lead the progress of this country into her destiny.

And to see this happening, we need to forget (but learn the lessons from) the past and focus on investing in this Joshua-generation for the ‘Promised’ future!

Today, I’m excited for what lies ahead for Viet Nam. And I’m believing that the next 40 years will be a glorious one with Viet Nam saved, transformed and prosperous for His glory. Will you believe with me?

If you do, please pray with me and together let’s reach to love and disciple the Joshua-generation around you!

Vision and Purpose in the Marketplace

Being in the marketplace, I’ve observed one prevailing breakdown among organisations that hinders true sustainable growth or success- the lack of vision and purpose.

Having a vision and purpose

In the marketplace, growth or success is generally defined in terms of power, position, recognition, material possessions and wealth.

However, if we truly put things in the right (godly) perspective, all these are merely short-term achievements or temporal.

Though I do not play down their pragmatic importance of survival in the marketplace, but there’s more to life than just surviving.

That’s why I believe a vision and purpose (ideally God-inspired) is of fundamental importance in differentiating an organisation from the rest.

More importantly, having a vision and purpose will expand an organisation’s definition of growth or success to significance; from making money to making difference.

Therefore, when rightly prioritised, these (power, recognition, material possessions and wealth) are, should be and will be the “by-products” of a compelling vision and purpose.

Transforming the marketplace

Albeit most organisations may have their “vision and purpose or mission statement” proudly emblazoned on walls or on their websites, but in reality they’re at most serving as decorative or cosmetic measures.

“Where there is no vision, the people perish…”

Proverbs 29:18

At present, there is a pressing need for leadership in organisations to have depth and foresight in their vision and purpose. Especially during this slowdown of the economy, this poses as good opportunity to reflect, re-visit or even re-align focus and priorities.

As leadership determines the rise or fall of an organisation, so leaders have to be clear about their vision and purpose as that would determine the business sustainability.

Leaders have to communicate it constantly and consistently. And not just communicating with nice superficial words, but also with action through their exemplenary leadership.

As an employee, besides earning an income, I believe people are looking for more meaning and purpose in their work. This is most natural and expected as we spend the most time of our days at work.

But unfortunately, the reality remains for bottom-line pressure for profitability taking precedence over meaning and purpose in the marketplace.

As a result, it also remains a challenge for us to either choose to conform to this pressure or to be strong and choose to transform the marketplace towards true sustainable growth that makes a difference.