inform - inspire - unite
Li Xin Ong - Faith - Laura Tickner
Before knowing Christ, I thought I only had myself to depend on. – I’m simply an imperfect, yet earnest, work-in-progress for Christ. – God has made an impact.
Li Xin Ong
Growing up in a non-Christian family, my only exposure to the Gospel was the occasional church invitation by Christian friends. Later, I was introduced to the Church of Christ by my husband who encouraged me to worship regularly with him.
As I began to understand the Gospel and became acquainted with other mature Christians, I marvelled at their Christ-like behaviour - their quiet strength, forbearance, and gentle humility that came from having a strong faith. This inspired me to seek my own faith.
Before knowing Christ, I thought I only had myself to depend on. This bred a degree of selfishness and a sense of ‘what can I get out of this?’ After getting to know God, I have learnt to trust and depend on him more. That has brought a sense of calm. It’s transformed my way of thinking into more of ‘how can I help others?’
Working in a retail environment and facing abusive customers has challenged me to remember God’s command to love one another. Learning to respond to harsh words with love and calm patience instead of anger and defiance might also be viewed as counter-cultural (it can also be seen as weak and submissive). I hope I can continue to rely on God’s strength to show love and patience to everyone. I also hope to have the courage to do his will even if it goes against societal norms.
Li Xin Ong is a member of Belmore Road Church of Christ, Melbourne.
Being raised in a Christian household, God and the church have always been a part of my life. However, I decided to claim my faith as my own after realising how much I love my church family, how the intricacy of nature could only be the work of a ‘Master Designer’, and ultimately how empty my life would be without God by my side.
For this issue, InterSections interviewed three young women who have made their commitment to follow Christ in recent years. Each responded to the following questions:
What prompted you to follow Christ as your Master? How has God been transforming your life since making this momentous decision? In what ways does Christ define you now?
I believe God has transformed me by placing some truly special people in my life. I think of the small church in Lyon, France, who welcomed me with warmth and hospitality during a challenging six-week language exchange. I think of the older, mature Christian couples – from overseas and interstate – who have shared dinner and much wisdom with our family through their stories of faith and loss. I think of Veron, who really was a Christian sister to me during my first solo overseas trip in Jogjakarta. But, most of all, I see God’s transformative power in my family – their persistent acts of patience, forgiveness, and humility are slowly transforming me into a better daughter, sister, and fellow Christian.
While I still struggle with the idea of my ‘identity’, becoming a Christian has freed me from an unending search to ‘find myself’ through success, others’ approval, travel, or possessions. I’m simply an imperfect, yet earnest, work-in-progress for Christ. So, I now define myself as a blessed and valuable follower of Christ, ultimately created to live up to my name in everything I say, do, and think.
Faith is a member of Belmore Road Church Christ, Melbourne.
I grew up in the church and everyone there is family to me. Being influenced by my immediate family as well as so many others gave me that extra push to make God the Lord and Master of my life.
It’s been two years since I was baptised and it really gives me something to relate things back to. Things are still hard, and I have ups and downs. But what’s most important is that God has a plan for me, and that he loves me. That makes all the difference. Christ has always been a part of my life. I’ve grown up going to church twice a week, going to different church lectureships and services, learning about the miracles that Jesus performed, and singing Bible songs.
Without God in my life, I wouldn’t at all be the same person I’m today. Going to church and learning about God teaches me so many things about life. As I read more of the Scriptures, I understand more about how the impact of Jesus dying on the cross and taking away people’s sins will affect the rest of eternity.
As Galatians 2:20 says: 'I've been crucified with Christ. It's no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.' (ESV)
Christ defines me by influencing how I think and act daily. God has made an impact. I have to stop and think when I make decisions in order to make sure that what I’m doing is right and pleasing to Him. Of course, we all make mistakes and we slip up. But it has really changed the way that I do things.
Laura Tickner is a member of Macquarie Church of Christ, Sydney. Lauratickner@outlook.com