We’ve known Wee Hian and King Ling for 50 years since Malaysia days. We worked together to write the book “Lovers for Life” in 1971. We’ve kept our friendship going over different continents and meet up regularly to stimulate and encourage one another. The Chuas live in London and travel all over to speak and minister.
by Chua Wee Hian
In my bedroom, I keep a book with the my hand-written title, LEST I FORGET. I have recorded around 300 names of men and women who have impacted my life and ministry. From time to time, I flip through the pages and each time, I keep thanking God for these dear saints. Most of them are alive; some might be surprised that I included their names. They look to me as their mentor or spiritual father. And yet I have learnt so much from them especially their hunger for the Lord.
MY MODELSNearly 60 years ago, I was exhorted to hang around godly leaders. Watch them preach. Be in groups – large or small and observe how they answer questions and interact with people. Spend time with men of vision: listen to their struggles and accomplishments. Interact with top-notch administrators and learn the secrets of determining priorities and training up others to continue the work of their churches or companies. For over half a century, I sought to do this. My life has been wonderfully enriched by their lives, counsel and examples.
When I was General Secretary of IFES, for almost 20 years, John Stott used to meet with me in his study on a regular basis. Many of us look up to him as a Bible expositor, writer and statesman. One of the lessons I gleaned from him was his devotion to the Lord and His Word. He personally shared with me and a few others on how he would prepare his sermons with open Bible, notebook and on his knees. That poise and perspective have rubbed on me as I prepare to expound God’s Word.
I had the privilege of watching Billy Graham close up at committee meetings. He was always attentive,; he often smiled or gave words of encouragement to the leaders around him. He was never domineering. At our first face to face meeting, he heard me led the morning devotion for the Lausanne Planning Committee. His words to me were, “I made full notes of your sermon and I shall use them in the near future.” What humility, what encouragement! He set me on how to relate to young leaders.
CRITICISMSMy list of leaders who deeply impacted me would include, a Chairman who confronted and corrected me for blunders I made, and yet remained loyal to me. A missionary in Vietnam who told me off for not looking at him and allowing my mind to wander when he was talking to me. A dentist in Malaysia who exudes the loveliness and fragrance of Christ. He spurred me to long to be more Christlike. Can I ever forget the dozens of men and women who pray regularly for me and my family? Thank you, Lord for the company of your saints.
BETTER THAN MESo, dear Brother/Sister seek the company of saints who will motivate you to be like the Master to do great things for Him. Avoid those who are negative in their thinking and speech. These are normally very defensive people and their ministry are either stagnant or declining.
I end with a quotation of Jack Welch former CEO of General Motors.
“It is better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behaviour is better than yours and you will move in that direction”.