Fight The Good Fight in Life
W hilst I was browsing through my obsolete Youtube Channel, I saw a video of my paternal grandma’s burial back in March 2014 and that brought back lots of old memories for me. My paternal grandma lived to a ripe old age of 101 and was survived by 4 generations of descendants upon her departure. She had an unwavering faith in God throughout her Christian life.
Looking back, I was so young and ignorant then – uploading pretty ‘unglam’ videos of me singing hymns in the middle of the night because I’ve always found solace in hymn-singing and music. I would lock myself in my bedroom and sing whenever I felt depressed and stressed and my unhappiness would somehow melt away… So I dedicated 2 hymns – “Nearer, my God, to Thee” & “In The Sweet By & By” to my late paternal grandma:
3 years have passed since grandma’s departure, & I would still like to celebrate the life of my paternal grandma and share with you her life walking with God as a staunch Christian.
My Paternal Grandma – Mdm. Lai Yin (1912 – 2014)
My paternal grandma spent more than half of her lifetime serving Christ and living for Christ ever since she was saved by God’s grace. She was born with a silver spoon – to a very affluent family in China. Having being served by maids since birth, she had nothing to worry about. She married my grandpa and fled to Malaysia (Ipoh) during the 2nd World War and had 8 children – of which my dad is the youngest. When my dad was 5, my grandpa passed away, leaving my grandma to support the entire family all by herself. In the morning, she would sell vegetables. And during the afternoon, she would ride on her bicycle to sell bread. She was nicknamed “bread lady” in the village. She pawned almost all of her valuables to sustain the family, keeping only her dowry – 2 pairs of earrings.
Getting To Know God & Persecution due to Her Faith
She came to know Christ when one of her daughter fell gravely ill. She spent a fortune trying to get her healed – including consulting mediums (she was believed to be demon-possessed). She was so determined to get her daughter cured to the extent that she sold the tool of her livelihood – her bicycle to raise the fees to help her daughter. Nothing helped till she came to know Christ. However, her conversion brought wrath from the villagers as she had discarded all the family’s idols after she accepted Christ. The family was persecuted by the villagers – my dad and his siblings were bullied since young and they suffered both physical and mental abuse from their neighbors, including being stoned by them. These persecutions did not deter my grandma from her belief in Christ. She continued to serve God and live a life for Christ.
Raised From The Dead
There was once another of my grandma’s daughter (my aunt) died of measles. Two womenfolk from the village visited her and confirmed that she had stopped breathing.
However, grandma did not give up and requested for my dad and his other sister to pray together with her.
After a while, my aunt began to breathe and recover slowly. During my aunt’s convalescence in the house (for a few weeks), the villagers thought that she had died and that my grandma had buried her. They concluded that it was grandma’s retribution for discarding the family’s idols.
When they saw my aunt walking out of the house after a couple of weeks, they had a shock and I guess they stopped persecuting them after a while.
A Prayerful Life Filled With Gratitude
Grandma was a v pious Christian and would say long prayers to God during her spare time. Although life was harsh, she murmured not and was very strong in her faith with God.
It was only through her faith in God which enabled her to sustain thus far – she had survived 2 world wars and was 101 years old when she departed.
Her relationship with God has been intimate and God would reveal things to her in prayers, i.e. she would know when any one of her family would meet some mishap etc. Grandma has been in good health until 2013 whereby she suffered a minor stroke and was hospitalized.
However, she was miraculously discharged after one week in the hospital. She attended Sabbath services in church soon after, as per her usual practice. The church members held her in high regard as she insisted on going to church to worship God despite her old age and frail body.
It was during the last few days of her life that she proclaimed: “I want to go home”. At that time, my aunts did not understand what was she saying as she was already lying on her bed at home. It was only after her passing that they realized that the ‘home’ referred to our ‘heavenly home’ above. My grandma rested in the Lord on 16 March 2013. She looked as if she was asleep when she departed.
In John 14:2 (“In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you.”), Jesus mentioned that there were many rooms in heaven prepared for the children of God. I guess, grandma is now being fetched by the angels to live in her new home above where there will no longer be weeping and suffering.
Asleep in Christ
“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall e caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”
~ 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
Crying & Laughing, Such is Life…
During her condolence service, the Preacher mentioned that life can be easily summarized by 2 things – crying and laughing. The irony of life begins when an infant was delivered into this world crying while the adults rejoiced over the new addition to the family.
Similarly, as Christians, we do not fear death as we know where we would be going after death and hence we would depart this world rejoicing whilst those alive would be mourning and weeping over our departure. However, we should not grief for too long as we know we would all meet on the beautiful shore one fine day.
Thank God for manifesting His likeness in the life of our grandma. Indeed, to be able to walk with God during our life’s journey is the GREATEST blessing a Christian can experience. Not even monetary gains would be able to give us such satisfaction.
Fighting The Good Fight of Faith…
In conclusion, I shall end with a bible verse:
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day – and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for His appearing.”
~ 2 Timothy 4:7
Have we fought the good fight like Paul in order to be able to proclaim with such certainty and conviction? If not, it might be time for self-reflection…
P.S. Are you recovering from grief from loss of a loved one? This Guidebook might be able to help you recover from grief faster 😉
To A Victorious You