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We thank God for His blessings upon our recently-concluded Annual Camp at Hotel Puri, Melaka. A total of 27 brethren (including 11 from Calvary Jaya Youth Fellowship) attended the Camp from 10th – 13th December.

Our speaker, Pr Ko Lingkang, spoke on the theme, “The Beatitudes” based on Matthew 5: 1-12. The world lauds those who are bold and assertive. Here in these beatitudes are paradoxes which are contrary to the world’s views. As citizens of the heavenly kingdom, we are called upon to humble ourselves, to be peaceable, to live uprightly, and to suffer for Christ’s sake. Each of the Beatitudes promises a blessing to those who live according to its precepts.

We are grateful to the Lord that the campers have profited much from the camp – as reflected in the following testimony of our brother Kelvin Li:

All praise and glory be to God for seeing us through yet another Church Camp, held in conjunction with the Calvary Jaya Youth Fellowship from 10-13 December. This camp also reminded us of His faithfulness in sustaining Berith Bible-Presbyterian Church over the past two decades, as this was our 20th Annual Church Camp. The sweet fellowship that we have enjoyed in Christ with the Calvary Jaya brethren every year is a testimony of His great love and care for us.

This was Pr. Ko Lingkang’s third time as our Camp speaker, having also ministered to us in 2013 and 2014. We were blessed to have him and his family join us again this year. This year’s camp theme, “The Beatitudes”, was based on Matthew 5: 1-12. Even though it might be familiar to most of us, it was a profitable study. Pr. Ko led us through them in detail, making each Beatitude – a description of a Christian – relevant to us. Of the eight Beatitudes, the first four define our standing and relationship before God, while the latter four outline our responsibilities towards fellow brethren and people in general.

The workshop discussions held after the messages were meaningful and thought-provoking. These questions allowed campers to immediately apply what they had learnt in practical ways.

A question which left a big impression on me was whether the fact that we can face God one day excites us. Our group’s response was not very optimistic because we focused too much on the judgment to come for believers. Pr. Ko then emphasised that this judgment would be one of rewards and our reaction to this judgment day must not cause us to be ashamed. In contrast, this discussion made all the seniors in our group look forward to that day even more, as it will be a day of joy when “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain” (Rev 21: 4).

One of the camp objectives was for campers to commit the Beatitudes to memory. So before every message, the chairman would lead in reciting and memorising the particular Beatitude which was to be considered during the message. It turned out to be effective as many were able to do so at the end of the final message. We thank God for Aunty Lena’s testimony that she was able to overcome certain challenges because of the reminder from these verses, even one week after the camp.

As children are God’s gift to us, we did not neglect their spiritual needs during this camp. We are grateful for Sister Tammy’s help with the children’s programme. Though she lost her voice, the Lord was gracious to grant her sufficient recovery just before the camp to teach Pr. Ko’s two children. The older students were taught by Aunty Helen who continued with the second instalment of lessons from the Ten Commandments, which she had begun to teach last year.

Thankfully, we were granted good and fine weather all throughout our stay in Melaka. We cannot overlook the fact that our sovereign and gracious God kept back the rain. Had the camp taken place any later, we would have met with heavy rains as certain areas of Melaka and Malaysia experienced floods just two days after our departure.

Last but not least, the camp was a good reminder that we should not take for granted the great privilege of being able to attend and enjoy the camp. Some campers shared that God opened the way for them to obtain the needed leave from work after much prayer and waiting upon the Him. Others acknowledged that their attendance was made possible by God’s grace to bless them with health and strength.

So until the Lord returns, may we set our hearts and minds on pleasing Him. May we be willing to seize every opportunity presented to us to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Christ our Saviour. (Bro Kelvin Li)

– Pastor