A Life-on-Life Journey

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A Life-on-Life Journey

Posted on 27 Jun 2023

 

How did you encounter Christ?

Jun Yi

I come from a Christian family and have always believed in a Creator. However, in my early years, I was spiritually blind and ignorant of the truth that Jesus is God. As I grew up, envy of others’ success drove me to seek recognition through my pursuits in computer games and sports. Yet, over time, I realised that these pursuits yielded no significant results or progress, nor did they provide lasting satisfaction. I strongly resonated with the sentiment expressed in Ecclesiastes 4:4 —“And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, chasing after the wind.”


During my time in polytechnic, I found myself pondering the meaning of life and decided to approach a Christian friend for insight. She mentioned Jesus' words in John 16:33: "I have overcome the world." This sparked my curiosity as to why Jesus would make such a statement, but I felt ashamed to inquire further, so I simply thanked her and ended our conversation.


Just a few weeks later, by what seemed like divine orchestration, I had an encounter with the Navigators while on campus. This encounter led to regular Bible reading sessions thereafter. Through these sessions, I discovered that Jesus is in fact, God Himself, sent by the Father to redeem us from the consequences of our sins, which ultimately lead to eternal death. This revelation made me realise the significance of John 16:33 — Jesus had conquered this sinful world on my behalf.


Alongside this spiritual awakening, I also fostered meaningful connections and forged valuable relationships with the Navigator community.

During a Navigators’ camp, I was deeply moved by the words of the speaker, Jerry Bridges, as he spoke about the amazing grace of God. He emphasised that even as a sinner, I could receive the abundant blessings of God by acknowledging Jesus as my Lord and Savior (Ephesians 1:3). Jesus willingly took upon Himself the curse intended for me, thus redeeming me from the curse of the law and bestowing upon me His blessings, as described in Galatians 3:13-14.


After hearing the message, I was encouraged to follow Jesus wholeheartedly, but the fear of failure loomed over me due to my sinful nature. Despite my doubts, I prayed to God, “Lord, I do not know how long I will last, but I want to believe in You.” Determined to make a change, I committed myself to the daily Quiet Time sharing on campus, where God provided people to journey with me daily in my spiritual walk.


During the polytechnic vacation period, I was often asked to serve together or play table tennis with the brothers. Through the regular fellowship with one another, God transformed my lifestyle to a devoted life of worship and service to Him, guided by His Word and the fellowship of believers. I began experiencing the truth of 2 Corinthians 5:17 —  becoming a new creation in Christ.

Since then, 15 years have passed, and I continue to embrace the “Wheel-life” discipleship journey. Despite the various challenges, God's faithfulness has sustained me, strengthening my faith for the trials ahead.

 

Xuezhen

As I was from a Catholic family, I often encountered the cross of Jesus in church, yet its true significance eluded me for a long time. It wasn't until my time in polytechnic that I had a genuine encounter with God. During my first year in polytechnic, I crossed paths with two sisters from the Navigators who inquired about my knowledge of Jesus and His crucifixion. Though I was aware of Jesus’ death on the cross, I lacked a deep understanding of its significance and how it was personally relevant to me. Intrigued, I decided to join the Navigators Investigative Bible study to find out more.


My studies were my top priority during my first year in polytechnic. Being away from my family in East Asia who had made significant sacrifices to send me to Singapore for my education, I felt a sense of responsibility to excel academically. At first, I considered attending weekly Bible Study sessions as a commendable effort on my part. However, as I progressed into my second year, I felt a strong conviction that I needed to actively participate in fellowship as well.


During a Navigators’ camp, there was a speaker who delivered a powerful message on the importance of considering one another in fellowship. He addressed the reasons that people give up on fellowship: seeking a convenient life, social anxiety, and double-mindedness. As I listened to these reasons, I recognised my own struggles in these areas. I was determined to change my ways, hence I decided to make a sincere commitment to actively engage in regular fellowship.


During that time, I witnessed God's faithfulness and help in my studies as my academic results improved significantly compared to my first year. The truth of Matthew 6:33 (“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well”) became undeniably evident to me. Proverbs 21:31 was another encouraging verse for me — “The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the Lord”.


Through fellowship, studying the Word, and prayer, my understanding of God grew, and I experienced His transformative work in my life. Through the examples set by fellow believers who demonstrated their love for God and me, I was encouraged and spurred on to know God more intimately.


Looking back, I attribute my profound understanding of God to the power of fellowship in this community.

 

Good Friday Lunch Fellowship
 

How have you been impacted by life-on-life discipleship?

 

Jun Yi

My current work involves providing individualised customer service. My training in discipleship and follow-up with the Navigators has helped me to become more attentive to the needs of others. This has positively impacted my work in offering personalised and customised service. The nature of my work also provides a valuable opportunity for me to share the gospel.


Consistency (faithfulness) and patience are qualities that my supervisor and colleagues have noticed about me, which I attribute to my discipleship training and growth through the Navigators.


My primary aim is to prioritise Christ, seeking fellowship whenever possible (Matthew 6:33; Hebrews 10:24-25). This helps me consistently realign my values to be Christ-centered, practising kindness and servanthood over seeking worldly pursuits such as work performance, reputation and wealth.

 

Xuezhen

I have been involved with the Navigators for the past 17 years, and I deeply appreciate the investment my disciplers have made in my life. As a student, they taught me how to study and apply the word of God, as well as how to listen to His voice. They helped cultivate in me a heart for the lost, teaching me how to effectively witness and share Christ with others, and how to follow up with them.

The relationship I have with my disciplers extends beyond the spiritual aspect. They genuinely care about all areas of my life, supporting me through singleness, marriage and motherhood. They generously share their life experiences, offering valuable advice and godly counsel.


I am also grateful for the life-on-life training I have received in my disciplers' homes. It is through these settings that I have learned how to live out my faith in the midst of my daily life. My disciplers have also imparted valuable life skills to me, including cooking, parenting, and teamwork, and have played a significant role in shaping my character and instilling in me a vision for the world.

 

Can you share a few stories of the people you are reaching out to and invested in the past and currently?

 

Jun Yi

I got to know R when I attended my friend’s lecture at university. We had the opportunity to engage in conversation during a short break in the lecture. Through our interaction, I learned about his background and beliefs. Although R identified himself as a Christian, he was unaware of the blessings that accompany being a believer in Christ. I felt honoured to affirm his faith and provide him with the foundational teachings to support him in walking in the truth.


M was another individual I encountered late at night while he was seated on a bench, casually sipping coffee from a vending machine. M viewed our encounter as a divine meeting. Walking alongside him in his journey has been incredibly uplifting as he rekindles his faith and love for the Lord. Consequently, he has become actively involved in serving within a local church congregation.

 


Left to right: M, R, Jun Yi


S is a Junior College graduate who crossed paths with my mentees, which led to a connection between us. He is currently pursuing his degree at a university. I am encouraged to witness his genuine desire to grow in his spiritual life and walk with God, as demonstrated by his commitment to make regular trips to meet with us for fellowship.

 


S is in white (far left of photo)
 

 

Xuezhen

L was the first person I led to Christ. My friend and I encountered her while sharing the gospel with one of her friends. Although she was busy at that moment, she expressed her interest to meet up at a later time to learn more about Jesus. We arranged for a separate meeting, but on the day of our appointment, she arrived almost an hour late. Despite the delay, we were grateful that we waited because we were able to share the gospel with her, and she accepted Christ that day.


She currently resides in France with her husband, whom she also led to Christ.  L passionately shares Jesus' love through her creative endeavors, particularly in product design. Today, both L and her husband are actively serving in ministry together in France while raising their beautiful child.

 


Xuezhen (left) and L (right)
(photo taken in 2009)

 

 

T is my former colleague who joined the company through a work-and-learn programme after graduating from polytechnic. During a lunch conversation at our workplace, I learned that she is a believer. I took the opportunity to ask her if she was familiar with the concept of Quiet Time. As she expressed her desire to learn more, we started reading the Bible together. Now, she is actively involved in our community, growing in compassion towards her friends and colleagues.

Here is a testimony from T:


“I came from a Christian family, but the Bible was distant from me. I have never really understood how I can have a personal relationship with God. During lunchtime, a Christian colleague, Xuezhen, invited me to know more about God. She asked about my spiritual life and if I was interested to spend time to hear from God. I was curious and agreed. I did not know that I can personally hear from God through spending time in His Word.


I have learnt that I can show my love for Jesus by obeying Him. There have been ups and downs in my spiritual walk but one thing that I can rely on is that God’s love is unchanging and that He is faithful to fulfil His promises. Being disciplined in my daily quiet time, bible reading and bible study, I began to see changes in my perspective and priorities — to rely on God’s will, instead of my own.”

 

Trish and Xuexhen


Xuezhen (left) and T (right)

 

 

Can you share your experience of how your family has continued this life-on-life journey with the community?


Discipleship is a lifelong commitment.


In the current stage of our lives, with the arrival of our newborn, following up with individuals for discipleship has become more challenging. It requires closer teamwork between us, as well as the support of others in our community who can assist with babysitting. Despite the added responsibilities of parenthood, we remain steadfast in our belief that maintaining a life of discipleship is still possible.

 

 

 

About Jun Yi and Xuezhen

Jun Yi works as a therapist, specialising in partner-assisted stretching to improve the physical condition of individuals.

Xuezhen is currently working part-time as a Regulatory and Quality Engineer at a medical device start-up company.

The couple has been discipled by the Navigators since their polytechnic days, and is currently involved in the community ministry. They strive to see the ripple effect of God’s grace flowing through them to impact another, life upon life.

 

 

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