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It all started with the unanswered phone calls.

I was a new believer then. Somehow, I knew in my heart of hearts that to grow as a follower of Christ, it would be crucial for me to belong to a cell group (“CG”). I was really spiritually hungry then, and attending church on Sundays alone was not enough for me - I needed to be in the company of fellow believers during mid-week too!

Back then, the list of CG locations and the respective CG leader’s contact details were posted on DUMC’s website. I called one whose location was closest to home, but the call went unanswered after several attempts. Refusing to give up, I was determined to get hold of another CG leader. This time, the CG leader, who later became a pastor in DUMC, answered my call almost immediately! After some brief introduction, I attended the CG for the first time that week, and my life has never been the same again.

For the first time in my life, I experienced what ‘a home away from home’ is. It is not a physical location; for me, it is the company that I am with. I am very blessed to have a loving family already, and belonging to a CG means I am blessed with an extended family in Christ as well! The existing cell members were very welcoming of new members, and everyone got along very well.

By being in the CG, I learnt a lot about the church and my spiritual life grew exponentially. The CG was a source of Christ’s love, advice, support and encouragement for me. The CG was a representation of the church. Through constant encouragement, I signed up for many of the School of Leadership / Equip courses offered by DUMC, started serving in some ministries, went on mission trips and got water baptised with a fellow CG member!

The CG was also the exemplification of Christ’s love in action. I learnt to love with the love of Christ, and also to constantly have each others’ backs. We have never hesitated to stand with each other in prayer, and to be there for one another during both good times and bad. Once, there was a period where I faced tremendous challenges at work where my boss would constantly yell at me, and the CG rallied and prayed for me until I received my breakthrough. I would look forward to our meetings every Wednesday, and I always felt a hedge of protection around me whenever I am with the CG.

The CG was truly family for me. The fellowship was constantly very edifying so much so that tears flowed freely when the time came to multiply. It was only after being part of a CG that I realised we really need fellow believers in Christ to journey together in this life.

I truly thank my Lord God Almighty for putting the right desires in my heart as a new believer, to want to belong to a CG. Not only that, He has prepared the right CG for me and made a way for me to join that CG! This has forged a firm foundation in me that I am never to be without a CG, as an active member of the church. While different seasons bring forth different circumstances and people in my life, one anchor is constantly needed - to be part of a CG. For me, the CG is the embodiment of the church and the manifestation of the love of Christ at large. Being in a CG gives me a deep sense of belonging to the church, and is a safe haven for me in the company of a loving, genuine, Christ-centred community.