Life Camp 2011–Discipleship Together (PART 1)
This year around, the annual SFX Life Camp was held at the Good Shepherd Seminary Malacca. It was indeed an honour to have Rev. Deacon Sherman Kuek as the camp facilitator to speak to us on the theme of the camp, ‘Discipleship Together’. How do you feel about the camp? What messages have you brought back from it? These two questions seemed to be the common ones asked by friends who had missed it, yet it’s hard to give short answers as experience is indeed the best teacher in life.
Let me tell you that I reminisced about these questions in a very quiet ambience with only the sound of insects orchestrating the symphony of nature. The quiet moment reminded me of the 4th session during the camp: Discipleship & Spirituality where Deacon Sherman mentioned that ‘The discipline of silence will bring you deeper into the rhythm of God’. This for me was gentle admonition for the times I had been too caught up with the noise of the world and failed to listen to His words. He mentioned that ‘Prayer is not like a shopping list’. That totally contradicted with my prayer life and I am now learning to listen more instead of demanding. It sure makes sense why we have been given two ears and one mouth.
‘When you are touched by perfection, your sense of beauty will change’. This was a phrase that touched me during the camp. Allow me to give you my own analogy to explain the phrase. It is like when you encounter sacred and beautiful music like the Gregorian chant, Justin Bieber songs would mean nothing to you. Anyway, I am not a fan of Justin Bieber though I admit I was initially trapped in his ‘worldly’ rhythm. Moving on to the ‘cost’ of discipleship, I think all of the participants would agree with me that the price to pay for it is high. However, Love Peace and Joy are guaranteed for each and everyone who is willing to follow Jesus.
In this journey of discipleship, we often want to make sure that everything goes well according to our plans. We ensure that we carry all that is necessary to make it comfortable and safe. In spite of our meticulous calculations and safety measures, the journey may not go the way we want it to go. The reason being that we do not take that which is essential: Jesus. The absence of Jesus causes winds and storms in our lives. Without Him, there is no proper direction for life. I believe that the presence of Jesus may not remove the winds and storms of life, but we can meet them with courage and optimism. The accompaniment of Jesus gives us the strength of an invisible helper.
At the end of the session, Deacon Sherman reassured the participants, about 50 plus college students and young adults, to not be afraid as the journey of discipleship is indeed a rewarding one. Hence, let us ask ourselves: ‘Do I want to follow Him?’ †