Dear Brethren,


In a couple of hours’ time, we will come to the close of 2013 and enter into a new year 2014. It seems that we have just begun 2013 but soon it will be all over. 2013 will forever be history in our lives and in the history of this world. If there is one thing certain about life on earth, it is its fleeting and transient nature. There is an English proverb, “Time and tide wait for no man.” If you can have 2013 all over again, would you live exactly the same way you did or will there be drastic changes?

Next year we will be one year older and the Lord’s coming will be one year nearer too. What would it be for you and me then? King Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 12:1,

“Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them.”

This verse applies to young and old as well, for we are prone to forget the goodness and faithfulness of God. Remember to render thanks to God always and seek His Kingdom and righteousness.

Will we still be around to see through the whole new year of 2014? It is a question that we cannot answer with any certainty. Death is but a breath away and we dare not boast of our health and strength. Only the Almighty Lord God knows the length of our days on this earth. Solomon gave us the words of wisdom in Ecclesiastes 9:11–12 :

“I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all. For man also knoweth not his time: as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falleth suddenly upon them.”

It is a sobering thought to know that our life is beyond our control, but thanks be to our Sovereign God who is the only One in total control of our lives. So often we spend our lives working, planning and worrying about physical and material things. Rather it would be wiser to think of our soul’s eternity and store up treasures in heaven than on earth. Honour the Lord, obey His Word, put Him first always and serve Him faithfully.

For those still outside the Kingdom of God, it is an opportune time to seek the Lord, while He may be found. Do not take the state of your soul for granted. Jesus, in Mark 8:36, says,

“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”

It is time for everyone of us to ponder, reflect and examine ourselves while the Lord tarries. We are exhorted in 2 Corinthians 13:5a to

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith”.

The one thing that we must learn from this year 2013 is that nothing is totally reliable and permanent on earth. The right thing for us to do in the new year 2014 is to

“set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col.3:2).

Elder John Leong