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Today, I wish to start bringing this mini-series to an eventual close and focus on key highlights in my life that I have found most encouraging over the past year.

Faith

I would say that I have grown in my faith over the past year. Not as much as I would love to see, but then, great faith is often a result in succeeding the great trials and tribulations of everyday life.

I couldn’t tell you if my faith is the equivalent to the size and grain of a mustard seed. However, I know the LORD comforts me daily, and He has revealed His incredible peace and given me brief visions on key situations. I carefully guard my faith from false teachers and liberal teachings of the Holy Scriptures, and I strive to fix and focus my thoughts and words on the LORD, as a means of growing in my relationship with Him. Because we live as mere mortals, we should be encouraged to live confidently in Christ. For everyday, we live in a new hope in Christ.

Parents

I am blessed to have parents who love me for who I am. I am also blessed that they respect my space and need to grow in the LORD in the extent that they do not pressure me to settle down in life. They both know I desire a Godly Christian wife. Dad silently hopes that I marry a Chinese Christian. Meanwhile, my Mum knows that I desire a sound Godly Christian wife who loves the LORD, who loves me and loves my parents.

I have seen my parents grow in faith. It has been a challenging year for each and every one of us, and yet they have both chosen to support me in my tuition fees for my second academic year at Cornhill. Thankfully, it is my final year of formal education. Of course, I am to pay them back, without a deadline and without interest, but it does add an element of psychological pressure to pay back ASAP.

Lately, in the month of November, I have had the humbling opportunity to preach on two occasions at my local church in East Mains. As a result, I am also humbled to see my Mum view me differently, when I am given the rare opportunity to preach. Mum no longer sees me as her only son standing at the pulpit, but as a servant of God with a Word to share to the Church.

Church

I am still happily serving at East Mains behind the scenes, helping the worship team at the tech desk. Despite the ongoing pressure to make sure the congregation is singing the correct words of praise, I find it a humbling privilege and it’s something I really enjoy doing.

A few weeks after leaving my part-time job, I was briefly unsettled whilst I was serving in the worship team. I was no longer on top with the pressure of serving at the tech desk. There were times I could no longer concentrate and I was slow to respond. It was a bizarre dilemma, as I often thrive in a pressured environment, but since I no longer held a job, there were times I didn’t know how to handle the pressure.

Fortunately and thankfully those moments were brief, and I still remain in the worship team. I can only give thanks to the LORD for His love, mercy and grace to give me the ability to cope with the pressure once again.

I am currently wanting to review our song database and edit the formatting to make everything consistent across the board. I have been experimenting with visual backgrounds to encourage our focus and attention on the LORD during worship. I may be an arty-farty, but I dislike swirly abstract artwork. I prefer fanciful photos, mostly nature and landscape images. Hopefully next year, I can start to look at another solution, as the current package isn’t the most stable solution to handle digital media from various mediums.

It is my growing desire to seek further experience in all areas of ministry, especially that of pastoral ministry. Time will tell if the LORD sees me ready to move on, whether that be to become part of a church plant, or to serve elsewhere – or quite simply, to remain and grow in our neighbouring churches in Scotland.

~Richard