As we bid farewell to the Year of the Dog and greeted the Year of the Pig, I wish you a happy Chinese New Year, and may your cup be overflowing with God’s grace!
I thank God who has been leading Kam Kwong Church. In the past 28 years, I have witnessed the growth and maturity our church has gained, as well as the never-ending love of God here, which I am forever thankful for.
With God’s love, the Holy Spirit’s guidance has become clearer since 2016. God has given me the message that 2019 is the “Year of New Wineskins”, with the following three aspects of insights and reflections from the Holy Spirit:
I) New Wineskins – Freshness in the Holy Spirit
“Freshness” mainly includes the following three areas:
1.Renewal in life
2.Renewal in ministry
3.Renewal in the atmosphere at church
Firstly, renewal in life: It is not hard for all of us to notice how lives have changed at different extents because of the presence of the Holy Spirit. With my pastoral experience of over 30 years, some people’s life cannot be changed in such a way that they have now even in more than 10 years’ time. Yet, I have truly witnessed radical transformation in some of our brothers and sisters in just 1 year.
Secondly, renewal in ministry: In my thirty years of ministries, it is a pity to witness the constant rise and fall in spirituality of the congregation. For various reasons in life, their personal faith turned old and rigid, or even died out. But I have experienced the powerful presence of the Holy Spirit myself. With the Holy Spirit, services shall never be mundane; prayer meetings shall never be dull or religious. With God’s presence at church, all ministries would always be revitalising and overflowing with freshness.
Thirdly, renewal in the atmosphere at church: For 27 years, we have held fast to our morning praying meetings. Without the Holy Spirit’s presence, how can this continue for such a long period while we feel afresh? If all praying meetings in every month and year were the same, what single benefit could it bring to the congregation? I truly understand the importance of the Holy Spirit’s presence, for only God can renew us; only God can introduce freshness into our spirit. I believe every Kamkwonger would agree and say “Amen”!
II) New Wineskins – Answers in the Holy Spirit
“Breakthrough” refers to the following three aspects:
1.Breakthrough in the former leadership team
2.The future leadership team
3.Prospective and new ministries
Last year, the Holy Spirit guided us through the “Year of Newness”. Now it is a brand new beginning. Particularly in our pastoral team, God took up the repairing and rebuilding process and renewed our former leadership team. We shed lots of tears with endless contrite repentance, and eventually bore good fruit. We thank God as the Holy Spirit pruned our leadership team, to take our pastoral work up a notch. Amen!
In the course of Spiritual movement, I see the rise of many future leaders. They are young and in the pursuit of excellence, and more importantly, they are greatly filled with thirst for God. May God have mercy and let us train up this new generation of leaders to serve His Kingdom, and become the pillars of our church, to act as the solid foundation of Kam Kwong’s future.
New ministries are emerging. Apart from the Friday evening service, we have established two new families this year, namely: Ebenezer Family and Caleb Family. Ida and Michael, as a couple, are the family pastors of the former. Though they reside on Lantau Island, they travel multiple times between Tung Chung and Yuen Long every week to lead fellowships, train leaders and pay visits to brothers and sisters. Their dedication in serving has been true blessings to the members. May our Lord reward them generously. For Caleb family, family pastor May is a secondary school teacher. Despite heavy workload in teaching, she presented herself to serve God without any reservation. Her family currently has over 200 brothers and sisters and is growing toward 500. May God greatly bless and reward them.
New professional fellowships will be established, and one of the focus of this year is the youth ministry. At this stage, there are several secondary and primary school principals in the church, and we look forward to the great partnership in the gospel among students. There will be more… waiting for us to respond in action.
III) New Wineskins – Restoration in the Holy Spirit
Through studying Hezekiah’s life (2 Kings 18:1-12), God has clearly revealed to us an important message – restoration.
1.Restoration of our hearts to love Him
2.Restoration of our hearts to worship Him
3.Restoration of our hearts to serve Him
4.Restoration of our hearts to follow Him
With God’s guidance, we simply have to follow Him closely and serve Him wholeheartedly, the spiritual freshness would then overflow in us from deep within. He would also boundlessly grant us the power to walk with Him, to extend the boundaries of His Kingdom, and make greater number of people His disciples!
I believe that “new wine must be poured into new wineskins” (Luke 5:38;NIV), only new wineskins can be filled with new wine. Amen!