Learning to love our neighbours

Learning to love our neighbours

Posted on 30 Dec 2021

Taking a leaf from Jesus’ ‘Feeding of 5,000’ miracle, we learn how to give thanks for what we have, place our projects in His hands and witness as He takes charge.

As children of Christ, we are called to give as He gives. We give because our God is a giving God who sacrificed wholeheartedly on the cross and invites us into His sanctuary. In our current troubling circumstances with the Omicron Covid-19 variant spreading across the globe, giving and imitating His goodness presents certain challenges. Mainly, we fear that our act of giving might lead to an outbreak of the virus between us and the people we want to reach out to. These anxieties have caused us to reconsider how we live as charitable Christians. Yet, the story of Five Loaves and Two Fishes emphasises on more than just giving, He charges us to remember three key things: Contentment, Surrendering and Waiting on Him.

KKMC’s latest initiative, Project 5 Loaves & 2 Fishes (P5L2F), is a testament of this truth. Spearheaded by the Outreach and Social Concerns Committee, this initiative was birthed out of the church’s Community Blessing Event (CBE) held in April this year. A survey was conducted with residents in the area to get to know them better, and find practical ways to engage and bless them. P5L2F was conceived to bless the community and meet potential needs of residents, reflecting KKMC’s vision statement for 2021, ‘Loving Outreach’.

The community event kicked-off on Saturday, 18 December 2021. We welcomed about 300 households to the KKMC social hall, where we shared food and essential items sponsored by church members. “I was conservative in my estimates and did not expect so many people to respond. But as God would have it, my faith was once again put to shame as residents started coming in half an hour before our event started, while we were still setting up. By 1pm, we had met so many residents that we weren’t sure if the supply was going to last till the end of the event at 3pm,” Jason Tan, who is the Outreach & Social Concerns Committee chairperson, shared.

Brian Tan, who was manning the dried goods table, was initially worried too that stocks might run out as residents streamed in with large trolley bags. But by God’s grace, the event managed to fulfil everyone’s needs — with boxes to spare!

Mayor of the Central Singapore District, Denise Phua, was spotted amongst the volunteers, welcoming and ushering the residents to the different pickup points for the groceries. She also shared on the significance of such an event in the context of the Christmas spirit of love and community.

A volunteer at the event, Teresa Chin, said, “It was really great to see the residents responding and stepping into church. Some of them have been stuck at home since the pandemic started. What struck me the most was that there was a genuine need for basic necessities.”

With the elderly population in Jalan Besar making up more than 20 per cent of all residents, volunteers made special efforts to make home deliveries to those who were homebound.

“It was a wonderful experience to be able to help our community and a great first step into bringing some of them back into the church. This is especially so for the older residents who have had their social community events cancelled due to Covid-19. Praise God for His enabling!” Brian added.

Among the crowd were Befrienders from the Seniors Ministry, who helped our elderly guests navigate through the pickup points. Befriender Joann Chia commented, “This project opened my eyes to see the needs of the community around me and how people need the Lord so much. Most importantly, I witnessed how the residents want to be connected and heard. I didn’t expect many to come for the event, but the Lord opened the way. I thank God for the many opportunities for us to reach out to the community around us. All glory goes to God.”

Jason shared that the most heart-warming thing for him was seeing the residents walking in and out of church, satisfied with the event. “They thanked the church for blessing them in this simple way. They were happy to be here and to be able to chat with our Befrienders. I hope more of us will consider joining the work that God has set before us, to be a vessel of Loving Outreach to the glory of God” he added.

Jesus showed the church that this simple act of engaging in loving outreach, with just essential items to offer, is about honouring the act in John 6:11, and of giving thanks to God. We are reminded that despite our worries in these troubling times and the seemingly limited essential items on the table, all things are in the hands of God. In what may feel like times of tribulation, God is moulding us to find confidence in the proclamation of Philippians 4:12—to know what it is to be in need and to have plenty, to learn the secret of being content in any and every situation.

Amidst the rising concerns of whether in-person ministry and community events should be continued given the pandemic’s unpredictability, P5L2F proves that when we surrender our burdens to God and trust in His power, He will sustain us and will never allow the righteous to slip (Psalm 55:22). Only when we’re able to entrust our projects to Him will we see the work of the Lord in our favour.

Do prayerfully consider how you can be a part of our church’s upcoming community events.

P5L2F will continue to take place once every two months, with the next event taking place on 19 February 2022.

More details can be found on KKMC’s website: https://kkmc.org.sg/p5l2f/