It may have been a short two-day mission trip organized by the young adults of Trinity Baptist Church, Alor Setar but it was worthwhile. The senior pastor, Pastor Kuilan with 40 team members attended to the Orang Asli of Kampung Ayer Denak, Tronoh, Perak. The first day itself was event filled, with a service at night. But what made it stand out from the usual mission trips was that the members had not just come here to experience life in the mission field or even to have a good time. They were there on a mission to share the love of God.
The mornings and afternoons were filled with doing something out of the ordinary. This was the building of a toilet and the reassembling of a Disneyland like playhouse at the church compound for the local Orang Asli community. It would be a surprise to many Malaysians to think of a place that was without proper sanitation as we are thought to be a developed country, what more in West Malaysia. But the truth was the Orang Asli church of Kampung Ayer Denak had no real proper toilet, the existing one is lacking to accommodate the needs of the parishioners.
It was interesting and refreshing to be on a mission trip that was not just about the experience, or having fun activities for the kids, or even sharing a message to the adults. In fact, it was about being invested into the lives of the people. The members of this short trip did more than leave memories, there was actual material blessings in the form of a new church toilet for the worshippers to use, providing clean hygiene and a new playground equipped with funhouse and slides for the young ones to spend their free time – what a joy to see the orang asli’s kids having ‘modern day’ fun with the slides at the church compound.
In a way the group was living up to a very important verse in James 2:16:
If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?
As the Apostle James explains, what good is blessing or prayer, if we do not meet the physical and material needs of the people in front of us?
The worship service that evening was all the more real to the villagers, who were the receivers of the material blessing from the church. It was a joyous occasion as brethren sang and dwelled together in unity. During the alter call, the locals were being prayed for salvation, healing and their needs. After the service had ended, food hampers were being distributed to the locals.
The next day was also an eventful one. After the long day of building, it was now time for the group doctors and medical professionals to set up booths to care and look after the sick in the village. It was a full house as the villagers lined up to see the doctors. Despite having medicines with them, the team members also prayed for the villagers, as everyone know that healing is from the Lord Jesus, and we are merely the vessels to reach out to the sick and those in need. No one was excluded whether young or old, the same as it was in the Bible.
Inasmuch as you have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, you have done it unto Me.
In the afternoon the mission team held a very special children church programme with the theme ‘Balloon Day’ for the local children. There were even clowns present to spread joy and laughter to the young kids. The event ended with gifts given out to the children. One could not but be touched as they saw the joy on the little ones’ faces, despite the gift being a small token, this too was a command of Christ.
And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.”
Although this mission trip did not have feeding the hungry in the itinerary, the team members were in fact well-fed in return, by the locals themselves. Despite being poor, the Orang Asli were rich in natural wealth and resources. They did not allow their visitors to go without experiencing their hospitality. This especially in the way that the feast of curry wild boar which they hunted and cooked themselves.
After that it was time to head back for home. As the team drove away in two vans and eight cars, it was a job well-done, as they moved pass the newly built toilet and playground now erected in the church. At least these material items were now being used to enrich the lives of those who really needed them.
Matthew 6:19-21 ESV
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
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