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  • Alicia Tan

Home away from Home - Go! Grow! Glow!

by Phyllis Wong

Phyllis checking in at the MGS concourse for the church camp coach.

Each time the announcement on the CCMC camp came, I asked myself, Shall I go? The next two questions held me back, Will I feel lost in the crowd? What will the ‘love temperature’ be like?

As I was hanging around the registration table on the last day for signing up, a volunteer urged, “Come, join us.” I don’t know who he is. The way he asked broke my resistance.

In the days leading up to the camp, my apprehension grew. What kind of memories will I bring back? I’m delighted to carry home these story-snapshots of ‘Home away from Home - Go! Grow! Glow!’

On departure day at the MGS concourse, two persons introduced themselves: Pastor Fred and Jasmine. When we reached KL, they included me into their ‘Free Time’ activities. Over meals, we got to know each other deeper. We shared our testing steps of faith, the times when God guided us through turning points of our lives.

L-R: Fellow campers Fred, Jasmine, Phyllis and Lui Sok Chan.

On the last night, walking toward the durian stall, Pastor Gladys reached out to steady my steps. I felt strangely warmed.

The miles of coach ride to and from Sofitel KL to Singapore flew in the company of my new friend, Abi. We bonded on songs and stories. The lyrics that shaped me during childhood are the same she sings: Come into my heart Lord Jesus, and Pass it on. When she heard I’d missed the item by the children, she sang solo for me, ‘Grow. Grow. Grow.’ I basked in the glow of Jesus shining through this lovely child, and her family with whom I enjoyed breakfasts.

When we reached Singapore’s check point, I had a shock. My bag was not in the luggage compartment!

Did I forget to load my bag when leaving the hotel?” I looked around. “WHAT! My pink luggage is on the kerb beside another bus, parked behind mine.” How my bag got there remains a mystery. God has my bag! God has my back! Abi declared it is God’s “amazing grace”. Indeed! Nothing is too small for His attention.

Taste of His goodness. Find what you’re looking for,’ we sang in our camp theme song. I found God’s meticulous love lavished in home-away-from-home in a community of believers. Pastor Edmund reiterated, “When the community loves, lives get transformed.” Enriched with God’s love, we shall Go! Grow! Glow!

Sharing with grateful thanks to God and to companions of the Way.

God has my back.


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