Aug 20, 2013


 Pride - a least favourite topic for me to share. However, I felt compelled to share, as this is one of the things that God wanted me to turn away from, which also was touched on during the recent Church camp.

It has been years I’ve “accumulate” pride in my life, whereby I thought I had more experience/holier than others, trying to impose my own set of ideas, causing distress in my interaction with others and service to God.

It occurs to me that when I think that I am better than the other, I am as if the Pharisee in the “Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector” – Luke 18:11, NKJV
The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector.
The parable coincides with what I read in Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis, Chapter 8 – The Great Sin, page 122, paragraph 2
Pride gets no pleasure out of something, only out of having more than the next man. We say that people are proud of being rich, or clever, or good-looking, but they are not. They are proud of being richer, or cleverer, or better-looking than others. If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking there would be nothing to be proud about. It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest.
There are also times that I was so full of myself, I was certain my thoughts are always right. I couldn’t stop but ponder upon the words of Virgil Vogt of Reba Place Fellowship:
“If you cannot listen to your brother, you cannot listen to the Holy Spirit”.
It is the pride of life (a term coined in 1 John 2:16, NKJV) that I have fumbles and stumbles a lot in my journey with Lord. May I be “turn and be renewed” [Church camp 2013 theme]. Amen.

-Yit Mun

Image taken from:

Aug 10, 2013


Jon Lee
10TH AUGUST 2013


Sorry it’s been some time since my last update! Following from my previous update, we arrived at Puerto Princesa safely, avoiding the storm that caused us to delay for 12 hours at Subic Bay.

Since we only spent 6 days at Puerto Princesa, I didn’t have many interesting experiences there. However, the ship has received thousands of visitors every day since the people at Puerto Princesa have been anticipating the ship for two weeks now. The most visitors we received was 13,000+ visitors on the weekends before we left.

As I mentioned before in the previous email, I went to Iwahig Prison to help prepare for the opening of a library. Before we left for the prison, we were told that it was a village prison. I didn’t seem to understand how it was until I saw it for myself when we arrived. Inside the prison compounds, there were houses, a church, shops, and prisoners were allowed to roam around. Even when we were sorting out the books, one of the prisoners was sitting among us in the same room, without an officer, helping us. The amazing thing was that it felt so natural and we weren’t threatened by his presence at all. There were also other prisoners who held the role of assisting guards, holding long batons and sticks, presumably to help keep the peace. The prisoners also worked at the farm, made handicraft, and sold them to send money back to their families. It was so unreal, and I couldn’t believe I was in a prison. During the official opening ceremony of the library, a group of the prisoners even got together to sing a song of worship for us. What really struck me was, when the captain of the Logos Hope spoke about what we did, the smiles and happiness depicted on some of the prisoners’ faces were so sincere and heartfelt, and I felt so moved that even in a prison, where people are locked up, they can feel a genuine happiness. It also struck me that even though some of us are free in the outside world, we create a prison for ourselves in our hearts, but these people in the prison are much happier. I really enjoyed myself at the prison and thanked God that no matter if we’re a prisoner in prison, or a free man outside of prison, whatever sin we commit, no matter how grave or how light, we are all the same in God’s eyes, sinners, and we are all forgiven by Him no matter what.

On the way to Kuching, I managed to be up on the top deck to welcome the port. There, I waved both the Malaysian and Singaporean flag. As we berthed at the port, some of us Malaysians went off the ship through the side door to be around the people who welcomed the ship, as seen in the picture. Coming to Kuching has made some of us feel right at home. Some of us Malaysians were asked to do a port orientation for everybody on the ship. For the orientation, we basically had to inform everybody about Malaysia’s culture, ethics, and regulations. Through this port, we could also encourage a lot of Christians by fellowshipping and sharing our testimonies.

One of the highlights of this port was during the first week that I was here. I was asked to help out for a speaking event at night. When I arrived, I started helping by welcoming the visitors, showing them to their seats, and then talking to them. At first, I welcomed a group of 10-14 year-olds, showed them to their seats, and tried to talk to them. Unfortunately, I was really discouraged when they didn’t seem interested to talk at all, instead playing with their phones and talking to one another. I excused myself and went back to the entrance, welcoming more people. When more people came, I didn’t want to talk to them due to the discouragement I had felt earlier. However, when I paced between the seats from the entrance, I noticed that there was an empty seat beside the group of guys that just came in, and there was a great unease every time I told myself not to sit there. Eventually, I sat there and started a conversation with them, talking about what we do on the ship, how we’re volunteers and all, and we talked until the event started. When it came to the time to help out with the games, I was already set on taking the group that I spoke to, as I already felt comfortable with them. However, another volunteer came up to me and told me to take another group up front, while he took the group that I was talking to before. In my head, I was objecting to this and saying, “No, I want to take this group, you can take the group in front.” However, I hesitated saying it and felt more at ease by just agreeing to take another group. It was a great decision as the group I took was very enthusiastic and lively. I first introduced myself by saying my name and my country of origin. One of them replied by saying he has something in common too, and we didn’t have any conversations after that. Then, even though we lost the game, we had lots of fun. At the end of the event, they had a cross in front of the stage wrapped in paper and invited everyone to step up to the cross and just write their sins on the cross, signifying that they’re giving up their sins to Christ. At first, no one got up, but as soon as some of us crew members went up, everybody else followed up. After I wrote on the cross, I wanted to head back to my seat but there was such a great unease of not praying. So, after pacing up and down the aisle a few times, I went back to the cross to pray. After the prayer, I went back to my seat, which was near the back of the theatre. When I sat down, I looked in front and saw other crew members sitting on the stage, praying for people. I proceeded to join them by sitting on the stage as well. As I was sitting there, the person who shared something in common earlier, from the group I played the games with earlier, suddenly came up and sat beside me, and asked me, “Can we talk?” At the same time, the worship just started, so I asked him to follow me to the back of the theatre where it was more quiet. As soon as we sat down, he just opened up and told me about his spiritual struggles. This enabled me to share my testimony with him as we faced fairly similar struggles with sexual sins. After a good, long conversation, I had the chance to pray for him too. At the end of the event, we exchanged contacts on Facebook and kept in contact there. Through this event, I was just awestruck by how God worked in my life to encourage another Christian. I was amazed with how God brought him to me despite only knowing one another’s names and not having any prior conversations. It was also such a great experience to use my testimony to encourage a fellow Christian by showing how God transformed me. After that day, I was walking through the book fair, and I stumbled upon a book, titled ‘When Good Men Are Tempted.’ The moment I saw this, I knew that I should recommend this book to Jonathan. However, I knew I couldn’t just recommend a book without knowing what it was about. So, I borrowed the book from the book fair, and decided to read through it first. While reading it, I found that I could really relate to what the book was talking about and really apply some of the things into my life. Amazingly, after my cabin mates saw me reading the book, some of them bought the book as well. Towards the end of our stay in Kuching, I managed to give him a tour around the ship, have lunch with him, and finally buy him the book I finished reading. We kept in contact through Facebook and are encouraging one another in our struggles. This was indeed one of my highlights of this port.

Other than that, I also had other opportunities to act in dramas and programs. The programs were mainly for kids, so it really allowed me to have fun with acting and I really enjoyed it when the kids identified me with my character even after the program was over. I really enjoyed the drama a lot because I had the opportunity to perform with my fellow STEPpers, which brought us closer together. Also, I had the opportunity to be a part of Project Breakthrough for my C-Day. This is a local project by the church that aims to reach out to communities with practical work. So, when a church member knows of a person or family that needs physical help, that’s where Project Breakthrough steps in. For my C-Day, we first went to a house where previously, a team had already removed all the rubbish and scrap from the surrounding of the house, to the front of the house. Our job was to transport all the rubbish from the front of their house to a nearby garbage dump. After the clean-up, we proceeded on to a farm at another location to cut grass, remove weeds, and prepare the soil for planting. However, what delayed us was when we accidentally struck a pipe while cutting tall weeds. This made us spend a lot of time trying to fix the pipe. Despite that, we still had a great day helping people and sharing God’s love through it.

Throughout this entire port of Kuching, the port volunteers have played such a big part in our time here. It was amazing how some of them still came to work even though they weren’t scheduled to work on that day. They just came to work with a heart that was so willing and loving to serve. Every day, we had so much fun fellow-shipping with one another and encouraging each other as brothers and sisters in Christ. They were so hospitable, bringing us out all the time, bringing us food, and much more. They have been such a blessing to all of us and we are ever so thankful for them. It was really encouraging that one of the port volunteers, after seeing how God worked in our lives, wanted to change her old ways as well, particularly in cursing and swearing. We still keep in contact, encouraging one another from time to time. What this port has taught me was that, besides evangelizing the unreached, as Christians, we must recognize the important role of encouraging our brothers and sisters in Christ, so that we can stand together.

From 2nd-8th August, the ship had a Sabbath week, or R&R week. This was aimed to provide the ship’s crew a week of rest especially after most of them went through 9 months of dry dock in Subic Bay last year. During this whole week, most of the ship’s crew only had to work for 1 or 2 days, while resting on other days. This week was aimed to provide the ship’s crew some time to reconnect with God and one another. Thus, many activities were held, such as free movies, a trip to the beach, and a ship’s family day event at a field in town. During my second day of work, I received the opportunity to lead a team by being the shift leader. It was a great opportunity to develop leadership skills, even though I only did it for a day. Throughout the week, Moses Parmar, from OM India, came to the ship to teach us with sessions, and to shed light about missions in India and how they are helping Dalits in India. With Moses himself being a Dalit, what he shared was very relevant and it has definitely opened doors to missions in India.

Currently, we are on our way to Phuket, and I will be back very soon. In a way, I’m sad to leave the ship, but also happy that I’m coming home, even though it’s just for a short while. Thank you for all your prayers thus far! I look forward to seeing everyone very soon!