Know Your Leaders - Elder Associate Mok Chuan-Xin
Elder associate Mok Chuan-Xin, who also leads the Children Ministry, speaks candidly about his personal struggles as a Christian and ways that we can pray for him.
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 work for the Monetary Authority of Singapore as a banking supervisor. In a nutshell my colleagues and I monitor whether banks are following the rules.
I have been married to my wife Peixian for 7 years and we have two daughters, Yiqian, 5, and Yirou, who turns 3 this year.
2. Please share with us what you understand your role to be as an elder associate of the church.
We’ve been told that we are to be under-shepherds of Christ’s flock. To 'teach' not just in terms of content, but to guide others.
In the context of the Children Ministry I’ve taken this to mean that I am to look out for the teachers, children and also the parents. Where possible, I am to guide them towards God whether it is about right beliefs or right behaviour; and to be an encourager, or if necessary to issue a stern reminder.
To be honest, the role scares me sometimes, because I think about what I 'should do' and I find myself just so overwhelmed. It is during these times which I am reminded that we have but one shepherd in our almighty Lord Christ Jesus, and perhaps my main role, is to show others what a life lived with and in Christ looks like.
3. How did you come to Christ (your conversion) and how did you come to join Grace Baptist Church?
I've worshipped in Grace Baptist pretty much since I was a child so I am fortunate to have grown up in a Christian environment. I got baptised at 15 but before that I was pretty certain I believed.
I’m not certain when I believed. I have never had a 'revelation' experience, nor a specific instance when I discarded old beliefs for new ones and was 'converted'. My only frame of reference has always been the contrasts between what I see in the world and how it compares to what I learnt in church and Sunday school.
In some ways, I get jealous when I hear about the mountain-top experiences you hear when people get baptised, or those amazing stories of people whose eyes were opened in the darkest of days.
But I have come to realise that my 'lack of experience' is a blessing too. I can look upon my entire life, and I have been blessed with the awareness of when God has been active in my life. I think perhaps that’s what continues to draw me to the Children Ministry, that I can share my experiences as a young and oblivious Christian and help them seen God in their lives.
4. Tell us something about yourself that many members do not know.
I like to dance. I spent two years in university doing dance lessons twice a week. I am terrible at it, which then explains why most people don’t know.
5. Could you share with us one of your greatest joys and one of your greatest challenges as a spiritual leader of the church?
My greatest joy has always been when I see the children I have taught still coming to church and even serving in church.
At the same time that is my greatest challenge or source of sorrow when I know of children who have turned away. I wonder if there is something that could have been done when they were younger, or maybe I should have looked out for them after I stopped teaching them.
6. The Bible tells us to honour our leaders. In that light, how can we pray for you and encourage you meaningfully?
Personally I struggle to be a good Christian at work, at home and at church. One of my greatest fears is that one of my colleagues comes to church and then I get 'called out' for being a hypocrite. Do pray for me to keep strong in the faith, to temper my ways particularly when I am out of church. Do pray for my family as I continue to learn how to be a husband and father.
At the same time, most people don’t know that I’m actually quite introverted. Coming up to people and talking doesn’t come very naturally to me, which then becomes an issue as a leader because how do I care for those that I am afraid to approach? It gets even worse when you’ve been in Grace for 34 years, and yet not know many of the congregation. So minimally, I beg for your forgiveness if I forget your name, and many times at that.