God is My Refuge // 神是我的避難所
Claudia always wanted to know what the true purpose of life was. She found it through a burgeoning relationship with Christ.
I have always considered myself to be very lucky. I have never really had to experience any hardships. Life seemed to unfold pretty much as expected of me: getting good grades, making it into a reputable university, finding a stable job that can support a comfortable standard of living. But what was all this leading to? I questioned, even from a very young age, what the point of living was if I was going to eventually die anyway? Since no one was able to give me a convincing answer, I just set the question aside.
After I started working, I found myself going through phases where I would feel empty and restless. The issue seemed to be because I no longer had a sense of purpose. Back in school, I had a clear goal – and that was to study hard in order to up the chances of finding a “good” job. After securing a “good” job, I no longer had a goal to work towards. And it did not help that I could not see much meaning in the work that I did.
One day a friend invited me to Sunday service at Island ECC. She was already a Christian when we were roommates in university, but seemed to have matured a lot in her faith in recent years. I was curious so I went. I was inspired by the sermon given that day and afterwards I thought to myself that I could use more of those sermons to make myself a better person. So I continued attending service at Island ECC. It was on subsequent visits that I felt that Sunday service offered much more than just good teachings of how we should live our lives. I felt less restless after each visit, and I realised that one of the main reasons I enjoyed going to church was because it was filled with so much love.
After about half a year of on and off of going to Sunday service, my friend suggested that I take the Alpha course to learn more about Christianity, and I did. During the Alpha retreat on 20 March 2010, I accepted Christ as my Savior.
Not long after I became a Christian, I was faced with family members having major health problems, one after another. Within a short period of three months, my dad had a coronary angioplasty, my grandma passed away, and my aunt was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Then the same friend said to me: it was not a coincidence that I became a Christian before all this happened. It then became obvious to me that God wanted to give me refuge.
“God is our refuge and strength, and ever-present help in trouble.”
- Psalm 46:1
Because I believed that God is good, I was able to put my trust in Him and that helped me stay strong during difficult times, particularly when my aunt lost her battle.
My faith in God has impacted my outlook on life and priorities in positive ways. I no longer need to find meaning in what I do in my day job, because I now see loving God and others as my life purpose – and that can be done within and outside my job.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”
- Matthew 22:37-39
I now see every day as an opportunity to learn how to put love first.