By Alysha Ang | NTU Graduate, current staff at the Office for Young People
Though it was not something I wanted for myself, I recognise how being placed in NTU was a necessary desert I had to be put through. It was through the wrestling and pain that I learnt what it meant to trust in the Lord’s ways, and grew in humility and obedience to the Lord. Throughout my university journey, the Lord gave and took away but never once did His faithfulness fail or disappoint me. Though I am unsure of what lies ahead, I am filled with excitement and joy for I know that He who holds my tomorrow is good and faithful.
I’m Ally from NTU CSA and I’d like to share about God’s faithfulness that pursued me throughout my university journey.
I entered university in 2017, after attending the school of witness 2017, a 8 week live-in discipleship school organised by OYP. It was at this school that I encountered the Lord and met like-minded brothers and sisters who loved and pursued Christ. As I grew closer to these newfound kingdom friends, especially in the months leading up to the start of university, my desire was to go to the same uni as them. Being an arts-inclined student, it had also been my dream to go to NUS FASS since JC. However, when I received my university offers, only NTU offered me something that I saw myself studying. While most of my friends were headed to NUS, I accepted the offer from NTU, though grudgingly and very reluctantly. I felt upset with myself for not doing better, and also felt upset with God for seemingly not giving me what I wanted so badly. Though I felt a strange sense of peace with the reality of entering NTU, I still wrestled with the Lord, feeling indignant because it felt like God had intentionally left me out from His good plans and that He gave me what I did not want because I was not good enough.
Upon entering university, the Lord invited me to be discerning with what and how I chose to spend my time and energy in this new phase of my life. I chose to only attend CSA FOC and my school’s FOC because I knew how much of a social butterfly I could be which would not have been the most helpful if I wanted to live out my discipleship intentionally in university. This resulted in me having a relatively small social circle in university, something that I was not used to. All these accumulated to my predominant struggle with loneliness, and with lies that good things were not mine to receive.
However, it was being stripped of things I thought I needed where I learnt how to truly abide with the Lord. In my loneliness, I grew to turn to the Lord more quickly and frequently, moving from loneliness to solitude with Him. Simultaneously, I became more comfortable with CSA as the Lord expanded my heart to love and be loved. In finding my place in CSA, I recognised how the Lord loved me through the people He placed around me. Though it was not what I had expected, it was exactly what I needed.
After my first year of discomfort and wrestling, the Lord continued to call me out into the deep by inviting me and planting a desire in me to serve the community. It was through this call of leadership and service that the Lord saved me more than I could have ever imagined. When I first stepped up, I wrestled tremendously with my self confidence. I was so used to belittling myself that I felt like a fish out of water when He called me to lead the community, something I thought I couldn’t do. But it was through this call that I realised just how much I needed the Lord, and how He could shine through my weaknesses. I believe that the Lord’s call for me to serve was to save me even more from my self consciousness and self condemnation. He empowered me through the discomfort, giving me new vision of faith instead of fear. I grew more fully alive through the call to give of myself to the Lord and grew in certainty that there was no other place I would rather be.
Ally with her leadership team, 2019
On hindsight, I recognise how being placed in NTU was a necessary desert I had to be put through. It was through the wrestling and pain that I learnt what it meant to trust in the Lord’s ways which are higher than my own, and grew in humility and obedience to the Lord. Throughout my university journey, the Lord gave and took away but never once did His faithfulness fail or disappoint me.
Having experienced His love in such a real way, I dare to hope in our Lord even more. Though I am unsure of what lies ahead, I am filled with a sense of excitement and joy for I know that He who holds my tomorrow is good and faithful. With this growing faith, I will continue to dream the big dreams the Lord has for me that calls me to fullness of life and joy in Him.
I pray that each of us will dare to recognise how God’s goodness and faithfulness is personally empowering us to live more freely, fully and joyfully in Him!