Monday, May 28, 2018

Five Things I Learned in Lee Ah Mooi Elderly Outreach

While we measure life with age and accomplishments, we remember people with moments. Those special moments however fleeting oftentimes create a lasting impact that changes us and we are never the same. Moments when we celebrate, empathise and sometimes grieve. Events in life do transpire, but moments don't just happen, we create them. 

Saturday, May 26,  we had the opportunity to spend an afternoon with the elderly residents and staff of Lee Ah Mooi Old Aged Home. It was definitely one of the best afternoon, as we get to purposely spent time to share the love of Jesus Christ to the uncle and auntie residents by entertaining them in our little ways. We get to pray for them, play bingo game, sing karaoke songs, dance in action song and assist them in their colouring activity.

As I reflect on how the grace of God empower us in planning, organising and the actual execution of the program, here are five of the things I learned in this humbling experience.

1. Life is fragile.
Today you can be at your most excellent state - physically, emotionally and financially. But who knows about tomorrow? In fact in a snap, the Lord can take away your strength and everything that you think you own. While you are healthy and at your optimal strength now, how do you choose to utilise those energy and resources?

Preparing the residents for the program

2. You don't have to be the best. 
There are moments my insecurities consume me whole, limiting me to reach out and step out of my comfort zones. This event reminded me that that while you may not be the best organiser or speaker or the best person to do the job assigned to you, your willing heart and availability makes all the difference. God does not look for the qualified ones, He is interested for people who are available. Available to pray for others, to assist, to share your time, to lead and take part. I am blessed to witness first-hand wonderful people who are all out in sharing their time and talent to show love for the elderly of Lee Ah Mooi.
Volunteers leading the action song with the residents
"God does not begin by asking our ability, only our availability, and if we prove our dependability, He will increase our capability." -- Neal A. Maxwell

3. Language is not a barrier.
Although we faced challenge communicating with the elderly as most of them speaks Teochew, Hookien and Mandarin, we were able to navigate ourselves and connect with them. Praise God for a Chinese speaking friend who is willing to stand in front of the crowd and lead the program. But I noticed majority of the volunteers were able to communicate with the uncles and aunties not with Mandarin but with their wide smiles, their caring gestures, welcoming spirit and encouraging hearts. A simple touch and high five can surpass any communication limitation. Because love is the universal language. Genuine love transcends countries, culture, languages or dialects and even generation gaps.

Carlo our Mandarin / English speaking host
Bingo!!!
Impromptu Chinese song "Qing Fei De Yi" from Meteor Garden

4. What matters to you.
As people advance in years, we have different definition of "important things" in every season of our lives.  What you consider significant when you are an infant, a child, a teenager, a young adult, working adult and old age varies in different forms. But for someone who have seen it all, like these uncles and aunties who were in the golden years of their lives, makes me wonder what is it that really matters the most. What advice could they have given us to help us live a better and more meaningful life.
Volunteers assisting aunties with their colouring sheets.
Labour of love

5. Just Give.
The more you give, the more your heart is full. I couldn't emphasize this enough, while the world is telling us to take to be able to survive, God's economy is teaching us to share and give yourself to the world, in the end you create a life worth living.

B1G Singles Ministry volunteers

This experience thought me to appreciate every moment given to us while we still can, every person or loved one while we have them and seize every opportunity to help.  Each of us have overflowing love in our hearts to give away and there is no better way to spend it by investing it to others. A simple smile to your colleague, greeting the bus driver a good morning, listening to a friend, sending an encouraging message to a loved one, helping a stranger find his way and the list could go on.  Really the return of investment is more than a thousand folds.

Praise God for the hearts, energy and time of all the 26 B1G Singles ministry volunteers in organising this outreach for the uncle and aunties of Lee Ah Mooi. To God be all the glory!
For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. -- Romans 11:36
📷 Shoutout to John Andri Cunanan for capturing these moments.





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