Know Your Leaders - Elder Beh Soo Hee

Elder Beh Soo Hee reveals to Jonathan Yao what he considers to be the most important aspect of an elder’s role, and what it means to him to be part of the body of Christ.

1. Could you introduce yourself to our readers – for example what you do for a living, and tell us a bit about your family members.

I am married to Kit Wan and have three grown children: Samuel, currently serving as a ministry staff with GBC Youth, married to Jessica and with two young children; Daniel, working in Singapore; and Sarah, married to Adam and working in the UK.

beh-soo-hee-family-webThe Behs (L-R): Daniel, Jessica, Josiah, Samuel, Ezra, Kit Wan, Beh, Sarah and Adam.

I used to work at a management level in the petroleum industry, and subsequently was employed to oversee an Indonesia-based petrochemical plant serving the downstream sector of the industry. I retired in the last quarter of last year so that I can focus on my personal interests, which include ministry and family.

2. Please share with us what you understand your responsibilities to be as an elder/pastor of the flock.

I consider that the most important aspect of an elder’s role is to model Philippians 2 in following Christ, because the elder seeks to shepherd and teach through his conduct and words. To do so, the elder must know Scripture well so that he can guard the flock with the word and refute false teachers. In addition, prayer is vital to the spiritual health of the church. Thus, apart from our personal prayer life, elders meet every second and fourth Thursdays for group prayer, and every first and third Thursdays to address ministry issues and do shepherding, which in turn informs our intercessory role.

3. How did you come to Christ (your conversion) and how did you come to join Grace Baptist Church?

In my secondary school days I was a very confident person and considered Christians to be weak people who believed in myths. During my army days, however, I began to consider the historical reality of the Apostle Paul and Jesus Christ. I attended the Billy Graham Crusade in 1978, where I was convicted of my sins and came to know Christ as my Saviour and Lord. I was subsequently baptised in an Anglican church in 1979, though I was not involved in the life of the church body at that time.

Shortly afterwards I left for further studies in the UK, and was exposed to and participated in holistic body life – I experienced what a community of believers was all about through the generosity and kindness of saints. Through these followers of Christ I also experienced good teaching in the word, in both personal and group Bible study.

When I returned to Singapore, I came to know about and visited GBC, and was invited by Wai Kwong to join his Care Group. The rest, as they say, is history. GBC has remained the one and only church I have ever joined as a member. GBC is my family and as members of one family we should rejoice together and also walk through problems together.

4. Tell us something about yourself that many members do not know.

I love to go diving and have done so in many places… but only with my children!

5. Could you share with us one of your greatest joys and one of your greatest challenges as a spiritual leader of the church?

The joys include seeing the church coming together as one family to share in the joy and sorrow of fellow believers, so that Christ can be seen among us. Another is seeing the many who are faithful prayer warriors for the work of the church, whose prayers meet the spiritual needs of the leaders and undergird the church’s mission in the world. I was moved by an old lady who not only asked about me and my family, but affirmed that she lifted us up in her regular prayers.

The challenges include seeing factions formed within the body of Christ when issues are raised, and being aware of the intolerance that some feel when faced with inconveniences caused by others. Could the love of Christ be further deepened and strengthened within GBC to reach even seemingly unlovely ones?

6. The Bible tells us to honour our leaders. In that light, how can we pray for you and encourage you meaningfully?

Please pray for humility and sensitivity, and for obedience to the guidance of the Holy Spirit instead of depending on my own wisdom. I am encouraged whenever I see people loving one another as if they were in the same family: rejoicing over the newborn baby of one or weeping over the loss of another, for example. I am also encouraged when members are open to share about their needs, so that we do not fall into sin by not meeting such needs within the body.