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Words of Life

Seow Tan Hong // 10 October 2021

Meaning of life found over breakfast

When I was 19, I studied Naval Architecture in Glasgow, Scotland on an overseas scholarship. Being alone, I had time to ponder over the meaning of life. I was searching for an answer. And the answer came unexpectedly from a breakfast table one morning!

I shared the same table with an English young man, who was a student of a nearby Bible Training Institute. He told me that God is real and we could get to know Him by faith through Jesus Christ. He explained that because of the sin nature in us, we were cut off from God, our Creator, who is holy and cannot permit sin to come into His presence. That was why we lived without realising His presence. But God is also a God of love. The good news (the Gospel) is that God has sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is without sin to die for our sins.

When He died on the cross, He took the punishment for our sins upon Himself. This is the message of the gospel that “Jesus Christ died for our sins, was buried and rose again the third day” to be a risen Saviour who is alive. We can know Him personally and have fellowship with Him today by simply believing in Him.

My eyes were suddenly opened to see God

This English young man also stressed to me the importance of faith in Jesus Christ as the key to knowing God. What he said was all new to me. He gave me a New Testament Bible and asked me to read the Gospel of John with an eye of faith believing that it is the Word of God. That night, I read through the Gospel of John. For the first time, I was struck by the many references to faith and belief. I was so absorbed by what I read that I continued to read through the entire New Testament. I was convinced that what I read was not of man but of God.

It is hard to describe exactly how I felt at that time. It was as if my eyes were suddenly opened to see the reality of the existence of God. The invisible world became so real to me that the visible world appeared to be unreal. I realised that I needed to confess my sins and accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Saviour. I realised that He died for my sins and salvation was a gift of God to be received by faith, I had found my answer to life.

Sharing the Good News with my family

I was so happy about my new discovery that I wrote immediately to my mother (and subsequently to my sister and two brothers) about it and urged her to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as well. My mother was a devout Buddhist after the tradition of her mother. She wrote back to say how disappointed she was that I embraced a Western religion. But I thank God that He continued to work in the hearts of my loved ones. One by one, they came to see what I saw and accepted Jesus Christ. First, my sister, then my two brothers, then my mother and my father, finally my grandfather and grandmother! From a devout Buddhist, my mother was converted to a devout Christian! She realised how foolish she was before to believe in something false and how wonderful it is now to know the true and living God.

Since I became a Christian, I have grown in the knowledge of God through my study of the Bible as well as through life experience of His leading and interventions in my life and in the lives of my loved ones. I can testify that truly Jesus Christ is a wonderful Lord and Saviour.

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