A Nation Transformed by His Love
MALAYSIA, a land of opportunities and grace, a melting pot of races and religions and today, a migrant preferred destination. Some of us may not think much of it, but Malaysia is truly a land of promise as many prophets have proclaimed over this country. The issue is, are we missing the "open heaven" opportunities that God has set for us?
Given the opportunity to be vessels for national transformation, how should the Christian community respond to this privilege and grace of God? The clarion call is to "Transform the Nation through the Local Church" and to be effective, the church itself must first experience transformation.
What does a transformed Malaysian church look like? One who is passionately in love with God will bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit and maintain an intimate relationship with Him. The Bible speaks of David, a man after God's heart (1 Samuel 13:13-14) as one who was quick to respond and obey the Lord. The nation would experience much greater Godly transformation if only we as the church are obedient to Him. Human wisdom and wrong priorities are common barriers (Proverbs 3:5-6) because we chose to submit to self rather than to our Lord. Unity brings forth power (John 17:21), yet churches today are separated by denominational doctrine, leadership styles and individualism. The church cannot be an agent of national transformation if we are not united as one.
Paul spoke profoundly of building healthy relationships among Christians and churches in Colossians 3:1-17. Unity is a divinely ordained command upon Christians and this can only be fulfiled if we are clothed by His love. Differences exist among us, whether physical or emotional, or in our mannerisms, preferences and priorities. Even in our interpretation and implementation of God's Word, we experience conflict in the acceptance of others' convictions. We truly need to exercise grace in building relationships between Christians and churches. But this is only possible if we allow His love to fill our hearts as "love covers all" (1 Corinthians 13).
The exercising of grace and acceptance by churches upon their pastors and leaders are also transformational factors. Often, pastors struggle in silence as they face criticism and challenges. Praying, loving and caring for pastors are instrumental to the development of a strong community before it can serve as a transformation agent. When we learn to care for our shepherds, God will be pleased and He will equip us as vessels.
How will God transform Malaysia? A nation transformed by God is one whose governing authority fears Him. Corruption, unrighteousness and injustice are reflections of a deteriorating government, and one that doesn't fear God. The fear of the Lord (Proverbs 1:7) is indeed the key to dislodging such misdeeds to release anointing upon the governing authority. A God-fearing community will release His favour upon the nation, bringing forth transformation and grace to the people.
As the church prays in unity, God's power will be released through our intercession for the government, people and nation. Men and women who fear the Lord will be positioned in offices of authority to bring forth good developments to the nation and the restoration of justice to the people (Ezekiel 47:9). God will restore righteousness to the nation and cities and communities will experience His grace and love as the church takes up its transformative role and as hearts are changed from selfishness to sacrifice. The church can then be the prophetic voice of the nation that will prick the conscience of the people.
God will release wisdom to the church to provide solutions for issues and crises faced by the nation. The nation is plagued by many social problems and injustices against the poor, widows, orphans, migrants and other minorities. We need answers to meet the needs of many and to work out issues of concern whether they be the rising cost of food and living expenses, or erosion of religious liberty. Some of these solutions may require Christians and the church to transform their way of living and doing ministry.
The kairos moment is now! As the church rises to fulfil her role in nation building, God will bless. We need to build a nation through His divine power of love, cutting across differences in race, religion, social and financial status. God loves Malaysia. Churches and Christians have responded to the challenge to pray for the nation as indicated by the high turnout in the many prayer meetings organised to celebrate Malaysia's Jubilee. We not only need to continue to pray but also to seek God to transform us so that we may be transformation agents for our nation.