by Jonathan Mui, 21 years old
I’m from a family of 4 with a younger brother and I’d just completed my national service. I grew up in a typical Asian family with meritocratic parents who wanted my brother and I to do well in school. My parents would often compare me with other kids in terms of academics and any form of achievement. Thus, I placed high expectations on myself to excel to receive validation from my parents and peers. The words “my sons are useless” and “if only my sons could…” were often used by my dad and while these words made me feel ashamed and embarrassed, I buried my feelings and told myself to work even harder. I was envious of others’ gifts and wanted to be like my peers in school who excelled in everything with minimal effort. Even through NS, I was gravely disappointed I didn’t make it to OCS unlike most of my peers.
Though I put up an optimistic front that I’m okay, deep down, I hated myself for who I am. To me, God was a distant watchmaker who created me and left me to fend for myself in this cold, cruel world. Since my prayers seemed to go unanswered, I gave up and lived my life by my own strength. When I reached a point in life where my self-reliance took its toll on me, I signed up for SOW hoping to seek a relationship with God.
On the first day of SOW, I regretted coming as I felt out of place and thought that I wasn’t qualified to be here. However, the next day, the Lord revealed to me how harsh I am on myself, and how I didn’t believe God would love me for who I am. During a session on returning home to the Father, the Lord assured me in prayer that He has never abandoned me and never will. I learnt to claim the truths that I’m worthy of God’s love, His only expectation for me was to be His son, and because I am fearfully and wonderfully made, there’s no need for comparison. I felt the immensity of His love as He accepts me for all my flaws and sins. With this understand, my image of Him was restored.
However, the Lord wasn’t done yet. During inner healing week, the Lord invited me to reopen the wounds which I’ve buried and forgotten. I was apprehensive as I currently have a good relationship with my parents because I’m able to see things from their perspective. However, I trusted and allowed the Lord to lead me. He revealed that my inner child was hurt from my parents’ words. This led to a strong self-obsession and never being satisfied with my gifts.
During the session on the paralytic, when I was prayed over, I received an image of Jesus removing all my trophies, awards and certificates. As I stood in shock, Jesus embraced me, saying He doesn’t need me to win these awards to earn His love. The walls I’d built around my hurt inner child was broken down, and finally he felt peace. For the first time, I’m free to truly be myself as I claim the truth that I’m His beloved.
More testimonies on healing and image of God:
I now live my life with freedom, positivity and joy. I’m confident, knowing that I’m no longer a slave to fear because I’m a child of God. My fears are drowned in His perfect love. While there are times where I still am tempted to give in to my insecurities and wounds, I’ve now learnt to journal these thoughts down and reclaim the truth that humility in the Lord isn’t thinking less of myself but thinking of myself less. I pray before commencing any activity, conciously reminding myself to do all things for His glory.
Indeed, God offers no quick fixes and His healing work in me is still a work in progress. However, I’ve learnt to trust the process and I know that whenever I fall, Jesus will be there to hold my hand. Honestly, it doesn’t matter what stage of life you’re at or how mature you are in your faith. As long as you desire to seek a more intimate relationship with God, He reveals more of Himself and yourself to you and the more He reveals, the more He heals. Do you desire a more intimate relationship with God?
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