by Samantha Tham, SMU FIDES Community
My journey with the Lord has been nothing short of a crazy rollercoaster, having my life seemingly turned upside down. I have been blessed to experience the great thrill of being on this incredible adventure with Him.
I first came to OYP back in 2020 for the Kickstart Freshmen Retreat. I was anxious to go, worried over how it would be like, fretting over how others would perceive me. By His grace, I turned up for the virtual retreat and He opened my heart to His people. The immense warmth that was emanating from the communities captivated me and the joy of the community intrigued me. It was the Lord’s gentle hand in my life, guiding me to Him and drawing me closer to His church.
When I entered university, I joined SMU Fides. Since then, the community has been a pivotal part of my journey towards God and it is a place I hold close to my heart. I thank God for His abounding grace and love, and for this community who sees me with His eyes and who seek to love me as He loves us. I praise God for His faithfulness to me. I thank Him for pursuing me and drawing me to His people. What was once my heart of stone has been gently thawed by the Lord, the walls of my life have been broken down and He has taught me how to share life with others.
I experienced God’s love that dwells in His church in a special way this year. Around May this year, I sustained a slipped disc injury on OYP’s grounds. Through the people who cared for me, prayed for me and reached out to me to show their concern, I experienced what it is to be held by Christ and His people, and I thank God for that. On hindsight, I now see it is the Lord who so desired for me to know and experience the love that He has for me. Like the branches of the mustard tree that shelter the birds, I have seen the Lord’s hand in giving me a home in His church. He continues to remind me that at the heart of the Church is the call of Jesus Christ into new life.
I pray that our hearts are open to Jesus as He beckons us to Him and to His church, for nothing can ever separate us from the Lord’s love!
As we celebrate OYP’s 9th anniversary, it is only fitting that we do so in a spirit of deep gratitude and thanksgiving to the Lord. He is the one that continues to write the stories of our dear young people and brings healing to their lives. Over the coming weeks, we will be sharing nine such stories as we celebrate the past nine years. We thank you Lord for your faithfulness! #OYPTurns9
See more of our 9th Anniversary thanksgivings:
OYP Turns 9: Fullness of Life
OYP Turns 9: His Vessel of Love
OYP Turns 9: The Saving Grace of Community
OYP Turns 9: He Moved Me Into A New Way
OYP Turns 9: Jesus Will Always Welcome Me