Jeremy Kwan (Chaplain)
If you didn’t know much about me, besides working at Hopehill I
am blessed with a position at my church as the youth pastor. Youth between the ages of 18-24 have been recently been struggling because of the pandemic. I have had many conversations with my youth and young adults to check-in and get updates. Many seem to have adjusted well to the pandemic, but there are still struggles. This is why I always try my best to ask them a simple question before we end any conversation: “How can I pray for you?”
A short while ago an Easter weekend was celebrated. It marks the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Easter was a time to remember and reflect upon the sacrificial love that God displays for humanity. And through this sacrificial love of Christ, we all have new life.
With that in mind, this is a good time to continue our reflections upon Easter and pray. We pray because the bible tells us to do so continuously in 1 Thessalonians 5:17. We also pray to entrust our lives to God. We pray to focus and meditate on the relationship we have with God. And just as importantly, we pray for others. There are many people out there still bogged down by the repercussions of this pandemic – many who live alone. This whole pandemic does not discriminate, it doesn’t matter if you are young or old, blue or red, man or woman, this pandemic affects everybody. Perhaps prayer is the answer for us all. Next time you have the time to reach out over the phone to your family, be it siblings, offspring, or grandchildren, remember to ask them how you can pray for them. Even in passing outside while you start preparing for this upcoming gardening season, ask your fellow gardeners how you can pray for them. So, in these upcoming weeks, when you see or talk to someone can you try to remember to end the conversation with, “How can I pray for you?”
Prayer is such a powerful tool for us all to use. Paul would often pray for those he writes to. In his letter to the Philippians, he writes, “And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight … until the day of Christ” Would you join me in prayer for all those around us?
Dear God, we recognize your beauty and authority in this life and of creation. We pray for all those around us and ask that they may be blessed. Bless them with the warmth of your touch and the stillness of your presence. Bless those who are hurting with comfort. Bless those who are happy with joyfulness. We pray with hope because hoping is future-directed. It is not merely the present we pray for but what is to come. In Christ we pray, Amen.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Jeremy Kwan (Chaplain)
如果你們對我不太認識，很感恩，除 了在Beulah Gardens工作外，我是我 教會的青少年牧師。在最近的疫情期間，很多18至24歲的 青少年人都面對很多掙扎。我常與一班青少年和青年人傾談，關心他們的 近況。他們當中有很多人已經逐漸適 應疫情期間的生活轉變，但仍有很多 掙扎。所以當我和他們談話時，最後我總會問他們一條簡單的問題：「我可以怎樣為你禱告呢？」不久前，我們慶祝了復活節。它標誌著耶穌基督的生命，死亡和復活。復活節是要我們記念和反思上帝在我們 的生命上中所賜下犧牲的愛。藉著基督這種犧牲的愛，我們都能擁有新生命。
正因如此，我們正好繼續反思復活節，以及禱告。我們禱告，因為在帖撒羅尼迦前書5章17節中，聖經告訴我 們要不住地禱告。我們禱告將生命託付給上帝。我們要為專注和默想與神的關係而禱告。同樣重要的是我們要 為別人禱告。仍然有很多人因著疫情的間接影響而陷入困境中–很多是獨居的。在這次疫情下，無論年輕或年 老，不同膚色，不同性別，每個人都必定受到影響，沒有區別。誠然禱告可以是我們唯一的答案。下次當你與 親人、兄弟姊妹、子女、孫兒們通電話傾談時，記得問一下他們需要你怎樣為他們禱告。甚至當你在室外預備 園藝工作時，可以問一下問園丁可以怎樣為他禱告。所以，在未來數星期，當你遇到別人或有機會和別人談話 的時候，記得最後問一下：「我可以怎樣為你禱告呢？」
禱告是我們滿有能力的工具。保羅常常為他寫信的對象禱告。在腓立比書中，他寫：「我所禱告的，就是要你 們的愛心，在知識和各樣見識上，多而又多……直到基督的日子；」你願意與我一起，為我們週邊的人禱告 嗎？
親愛的上帝，我們因著祢對生命與這個世界的創造，認 識到祢的榮美與權能。我為我們周圍的人獻上禱告，求 祢保守他們，以祢的溫暖觸摸他們，並與他們同在。安 慰那些受傷的人，讓人得著喜樂。我們為盼望禱告，因 為盼望帶領我們面對未來。不僅只為現在禱告，更為將 要來的獻上禱告。奉主耶穌基督名字而求，阿們。