Returning home with new purpose and meaning
By Cyrus Liu
I knew nothing about Christ prior to moving from China to Australia for my studies in 2005. In the first week of my arrival in Perth, I was invited by a Malaysian housemate to go to Zion Praise Harvest – a campus based, student focused church. I was open-minded and wished to know something about it. I went to Sunday service and was amazed by what people were doing in this church! They were so passionate, vibrant with noisy live music that was far from what I could imagine of a church! I was then approached by a leader from a cell group to attend his cell. I was keen to get to know more people and also to learn English. Plus the food that was prepared for the cell gathering was very attractive for a poor student who didn’t cook much. In the cell gathering, I received warm welcome from cell members who treated me with genuine hearts. I witnessed their passion and faith to who they believe in. I was touched and as I knew more of Christianity I should have then accepted Christ. However, things didn’t work out that way.
Sliding back into my comfort zone
I felt tired coming to church every Sunday and started questioning the meaning of it. I subsequently stopped attending cell and church and went back to my comfort zone. I know it is my Chinese background; it is the environment I grew up that held me back. A voice kept telling me why bother to seek God, you’ve lived OK in the past 20 years or so. But I also clearly heard another voice deep in my heart, God is calling you, welcome back to His family. It was a fight between the old me that was a captive of the value system I received in the past and a new me that was about to be born by the power of God. It was like wandering in the desert without knowing where the direction was. In this process, God never gave up on me; rather He used many people to approach me including my wife Tracy (my girlfriend back then).
While I was still struggling to make the big decision, people around me were patient enough with my slow response and allowed God to work in me. The moment finally came! I remembered that one sermon by a guest speaker, Tim Bergman. He said, “Jesus wants to be your friend, and when He knocks on your door, would you open for Him?” I felt that it is the moment I want to embrace His presence regardless of whatever holds me back. My heart was moved by God and I accepted Christ as my friend, Lord and Saviour.
From that time on, I gradually got involved in the ushering ministry and community service. I was again approached by a cell leader who invited me to go to his cell. I did so as I believe that this was what God wanted me to do and I have since kept the momentum till today. As I am moving back to China, I decided to be baptised in Zion Praise Harvest which I call home. Up to the time of my departure I was glad to help in a group of Chinese scholars practising English and sharing my life experiences. It is a new exciting journey for me and my family and I know He has a great plan and purpose to move me back to China where I came from.
I also know that God will be with me wherever I go and He never leaves me and forsakes me.
Cyrus having graduated in Business School at Curtin University of Technology, worked for a Perth company and after 8 years was asked to return to China to work in Shanghai.