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Sermon Reflection - Walk in Love

Posted by Wendy ML Tan on

Since the last two sermons on senior citizens, I have been thinking at times of my late Papa. This coming August 16th would mark the 10th year since he died swiftly of a heart attack. 

In my eulogy for my Papa, I described him based on the mnemonic of the word LOVE, because of all the shapes, he liked the heart-shape the most: L is for Living life to the fullest, O is for Ordinary yet extraordinary, V is for Values and virtues and E is for Educating the world.

I spoke about how my Papa loved people, movies, writing and reading. His favourite book to read was his Bible. In his last days, he was rereading the book of Ecclesiastes. My Papa wasn’t an ardent church-goer, but he loved God. He lived in a way that followed after God’s Word and I think that was one of the most meaningful legacies he left for me and my brothers and the generation after us.

When my Papa died, my Mama said sadly, “You only had him for so short of time.” There were so many things that I had wanted to talk to him about, or to go places with, or walk down an aisle with if I ever got married. I regretted the time when I brought an e-reader home and never showed it to him. I wished I had the courage to pray with him when he looked sick and tired as he lay resting on the floor after an evening walk. Even as I type this out, tears flow uncontrollably down my cheeks. I miss my Papa very much. 

Yet, God never missed a single moment of my life. He was there to give a Fatherly hug during a session at the Baptism and Membership Weekend (BMEW) in September 2012. I could feel His presence so strongly at that time that I knew He would fill in the shoes of my late Papa. I would never be alone in this life.

Down the road to 2016, I started to attend a cell group again, and in 2018 or 2019, I would begin to refer to Pastor Moy How and his wife as my spiritual parents. It wasn’t a flippant decision to call them Dad and Mum. I thought about it for quite a long while. It felt weird initially because they are just slightly a decade older than me but now it has become so natural. 

As Dad puts it, LOVE is spelt TIME. What would the mnemonic be of TIME in describing Dad? Briefly, I would describe him with the following words:

T is for Treasure - of wisdom and knowledge, I is for Investing - time and energy and care into the lives of others, M is for Modeling - that is ‘to walk the talk’ in being Christlike, E is for Excelling - in whatever we set out to do, by aiming to do our best.

Dad always makes time for his children. As I regularly attend DUMC@Puchong on Sundays, I get to spend a little extra time with him and Mum. I dedicate the hours after Celebrations for them, just as they intentionally include me when they go for lunch.

Beyond any doubt, I am most grateful to God that He has provided me with two kind and loving, earthly fathers. And I am even more thankful that I can always count on God Himself because He is the epitome of what love is or how love should be. After all, He is Love.  

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” (1 John 4:16)

Happy and Blessed Father’s Day to my Abba Father in Heaven, to my late Papa and to Pastor Moy How, my Spiritual Dad. And to all of you too, who are fathers. 

Thank you for all that you are and all that you do for your children.