24 Jan 2014 by Jason Law CM –
On the 18th of Jan 2014, the International Christian Mission (ICM) Malaysia commemorated its 21st Anniversary through a Thanksgiving Celebration. From its humble beginnings, ICM Malaysia today has a very active ministry throughout every year, sharing God’s Word and Love to as far as the Democratic Republic of Congo. Some of the other countries under their ministries are Nepal, the Philippines and the indigenous ethnic groups in East Malaysia.
The thanksgiving celebration started with a Spirit-filled worship session, with the congregation singing songs of God’s faithfulness, and giving appreciation and praise for the care and protection He has bestowed throughout the year. Pr Hilda from Sabah shared about her ministry among the ethnic and aboriginal groups in the state. Her sharing was a very encouraging one; she talked about how much devotion and fidelity the Christians of East Malaysia had for Christ. Many of them have to travel hours to go to church and training centres, and many of these churches and training centres has not even the basic facilities like piped water supply and electricity, yet faithful Christians still turn up week after week, and when they pray, she shared that you could see the depth of emotion and passion they had for God.
Bro Edwin Marsden, the president of ICM Malaysia, shared a Powerpoint presentation about the ministries ICM Malaysia had carried out throughout 2013. Members of ICM Malaysia traveled to many parts of the world, and many powerful stories were conveyed. Some of these missions were to remote parts of countries, among ethnic groups of people who have only heard the Gospel for the first time. Bro Edwin shared that even in the remotest parts of the world, where you would expect only tiny pockets of inhabitants, they found churches with hundreds of worshippers. One such example was a village in Nepal, nestled among the highest peaks of the Himalayas. This is a powerful testimony of God’s promise as stated in Acts 13:47.
For so the Lord has commanded us, saying,
“‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles,
that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’”
Bro Edwin also related about a revival in the Phillipines, where huge numbers of police officers, including those in senior positions, dedicated their lives and work as ministries unto the Lord. Many community developments were also done to help the poor in many countries, including the Congo, where missions were carried out in villages, for schools, farming projects and churches. In yet another country, a brother-in-Christ was raised from the dead.
Personal testimonies abound, shared by Bro Edwin through photos and newsletters:
From Rev Conrado Lumahan, Phillipines, Concerning ICM Malaysia’s Typhoon Haiyan Disaster Relief Mission: “The survivors’ hopelessness turns to hopefulness. ICM Malaysia has not only committed funds for relief goods but also has done ground works in Tacloban City and especially in Ormoc City. In Ormoc City, there are about 15 religious denominations which work hand in hand with ICM Malaysia, in the distribution of relief goods.
Hope always triumphs over experience. Jesus is our sure and sole hope, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27)
New International Version (NIV)
27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
From Sister Kumari of Nepal: Sister Kumari provided a touching exemplar of a devoted Christian through her example of how much Christ meant to her. Despite abuse from a non-Christian husband, she stayed faithful and goes consistently to worship services and ICM Malaysia training.
Bro Edwin shared a short message from his heart. He said that for every born-again Christian, there are three stages in their journey. The first is the time of calling, the second the time of equipping, and the third the time of ministry. We see this through the lives of many of the great people of the Bible, and in the example of the disciples. Jesus gave them the calling to be fishers of men (Matthew 4:19), they were equipped with training during their discipleship with Jesus, and then they were sent out to carry out God’s ministry. Many of these disciples were nobodies, simple rustic people, but they changed the world and the whole direction of History, simply because they were obedient to their calling, training, and ministry, even unto the point of martyrdom.
King James Version (KJV)
19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.
The act of discipleship is a process, and obedience to it yields results. People do not get saved simply by us taking them to church week after week. It’s not the church service or doctrines that will save them, or for that matter, us. It is the real and active relationship with a living God that will bring them salvation. People must be able to see the heart of Christ reflected in us, and how can people see that if we keep it hidden? (Luke 8:16). Our sharing of God’s Word must not be approached as a matter of merely propagating the faith, army-style, but must have the ability to genuinely touch the lives of people and bring transformation to them and their society.
"No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light.”
Most other religions teach people to be good, and to follow the Golden Rule; ‘Do Unto Others As You Would They Do Upon You’. Follow certain rules and good will result. Our faith with Christ brings us to a higher level. We have the tough calling of loving our enemies (Matthew 5:43-45). Followers of other religions have a set of rules to follow, but through our faith and relationship as Christians, God gives us the power to live according to His will.
New International Version (NIV)
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
Many other testimonies were shared before the celebration closed with a pot-luck style dinner, where you could see the closeness of the bond between the members with the overflowing contributions from individual members towards the pot-luck.
References for pictures