Gracehaven Outing to Kampong Glam -- 17 Aug 2019

On 17 Aug, one of GBC's care groups organised a walking tour of Kampong Glam for the children of Gracehaven. Read why the outing impressed upon the participants that God is in control.

On an early Saturday morning, a team of 10 GBCers, comprising mainly of Tan Kim Cheng's care group, gathered at Malay Heritage Centre to commit the morning to the Lord as they waited for the children from Gracehaven to start a walking tour of Kampong Glam.

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We are so thankful for the GBC members who made time to bring the children out, sharing the gospel both in words and deeds. (L-R) Bruce, Doris, Sandy, Kah Yin, Charles, Yeow Cheng, Cheryl, Kim Cheng, Yuh Jane and Ps Ollie.

All were excited as this is the first outing that we have with the children this year! (Read about the last two outings: Not Quite a Perfect Outing; Gracehaven Outreach – Loving One Another.) But...it started to rain! 

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Under 'normal' circumstances, this would have put a big dampener on the outing but it all worked out well as the children were late as well. By the time the children arrived and the team was ready to start the walk, the rain stopped and the sun was out. :)

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With the rain gone and the weather cooled, the GBC members and the children and staff from Gracehaven enjoyed a nice morning walk around Kamping Glam, getting to know the history, culture and architecture of the place better. The walk also provided a good opportunity for the GBC members to interact with the children and staff from Gracehaven. Bruce Mok who planned, recced and led the walking tour shared his takeaways from the outing:

1. Together we rejoice in God's wonderful creation.
2. Regardless of race, gender or social status, we come as (are) one family of God.
3. God's perfect timing in weather control – rain while we were under shelter, shine when we were in the open.

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After the walk, Seah Kah Yin shared a short message from Philippians 4:8, the key verse for Gracehaven for that week. He started with an interesting premise: our minds are always at work and an idle mind is the devil's workshop. How then should we guard our minds and guide our thinking given right thinking leads to right action and wrong thinking leads to wrong action and bad consequences? Referring to Philippians 4:8, he exhorted that we should let God guide our thinking. He ended the message with some food for thought:

Sow a thought reap an action.
Sow an action reap a habit.
Sow a habit reap a character.
Sow a character reap a destiny.

Kah Yin reflected on God's sovereignty and goodness after the outing,

"Through the outing, we witnessed God's sovereign plan and perfect timing. If the bus was not delayed, we would be walking in the rain. If the rain has stopped earlier, we would not be using the ponchos that doubled up as groundsheets. If we started as planned, we would end too early. Praise God for His plan is higher. Thank God for caring for us and even the small details. Thank God for the privilege of participating in His work."

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After the message, everyone enjoyed a delicious biryani picnic lunch and it was also a good time of fellowship. During lunch, Sandy Tung had a good talk with one of the boys and she remarked after the outing, 

"Amazing. They [the children] were late. The rain came and cooled the place. When we started the walk, the sun was out. We didn’t know we needed groundsheet but because of the rain, we had the ponchos as groundsheet! Thank God for giving us the opportunity to share spiritual food (Phil 4:8) and lunch (biryani) with the 10 children and 2 staff from Gracehaven. During lunch, a primary four boy said he is a believer but he couldn't understand 'Why is it a Good Friday when someone died?' So he's applying what he learnt from the message, thinking!"

This outing has also impressed upon Cheryl Chan, who has been faithfully organising and coordinating our outreach to Gracehaven, to trust in God's provision and timing. She reflected,

"Lots of things to thank God for amidst all the uncertainties and anxieties...It was a good lesson and exercise in trusting God's provision and timing. We had just enough a ratio of volunteers to kids. The rain stopped just in time for the walk. Due to the rain, we had ponchos that we later doubled up as groundsheets to sit on for the message and lunch. The word of God went out and we trust it will not come back empty."

Amen!