My name is Jeff. My father passed away when I was very young. My mum moved to JB after she got re-married. I have a sister but both of us live separately. She lives with my uncle’s family while I live with another aunt. Without a father figure in my life, I often felt insecure and ashamed. I suffered from low self-esteem and became a person who was very closed up.
I did fairly well for PSLE and got into the Express stream in Secondary School. However, things started to change when I entered Secondary School. I was often left alone without supervision because my aunt had to work during the day. As a result, I had all the freedom to do what I wanted after school. I would hang around in school with my friends, or be at home surfing the web, watching YouTube videos.
As I was practically alone all the time, by and by, I became unmotivated to study. Hence, my results were greatly affected.
After a while, my aunt moved out and went to Malaysia to work. I started living alone in the apartment and had to travel into JB at least once a month on my own to collect my monthly allowance from my Mom. Often, I would not have enough money to buy food and I had to starve. I felt abandoned and neglected but I couldn’t share any of these feelings with anyone as I feared I would be looked down upon.
Due to my bad results, I dropped from the Express stream to the Normal Academic stream by the end of Secondary 2. I remained unmotivated and lazy. It even got to a point where I gave up on my studies and started skipping school. My results got so bad to a point that I had to retain another year at the end of Secondary 3. Around this time, I was invited to City Harvest and I was very touched by the love of God. I received Jesus into my heart but there was so much to be done within me.
I continued to be unmotivated and lazy and I still hid the truth about my family and myself from my Cell Group leader and members.
I was nonchalant about my poor results and poor school attendance all the way until June last year when I was already in Secondary 4. I was not ready to take my N-levels in September. In desperation, my teachers contacted my sister for help. In turn, my sister contacted my Cell Group Leader in hope that those who are closer to me could encourage and motivate me. At the same time, my Cell Group Leader also found out that I had been living alone all by myself all these while.
My Zone Supervisor, Catherine, got to know about my situation. She rallied the members in the zone to tutor me in my studies. She even opened up her house for me to go over to study every Monday and prepared home cooked food for me! I thank God and thank Catherine for that!
Things started to change with all these help rendered to me. I began to feel the urgency to work hard for my N-levels and prayed that God would remove the fear in me for my exams. I was very touched and motivated by my various zone members who forked out their time to tutor me in spite of their busy schedule. I could see God’s goodness, kindness and love embedded in the practical love from these people.
I determined in my heart and made a prayer to God that I would be more disciplined in my studies and be teachable not just academically but also in my character. I took my N-levels, holding on to the Word of God from Jeremiah 29:11 that says, “For I know the thoughts that I think towards you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
When N-level results were released, I was overjoyed that I had obtained 15 points for my EMB3.
Praise the Lord! From a boy who wasn’t disciplined in his studies and had failed multiple times, God has certainly worked a miracle for me.
Right now, I’m in the DPP path, doing a 2-year higher Nitec course in hospitality operation before going to Polytechnic.
On hindsight, God has been working behind the scene to reveal the imperfection in my life and turning it into a beautiful story. From a mess, God turned my life into a message! I thank God for giving me another chance to work hard. He is certainly a God of second chance and a God who loves us enough to see us grow, even if it means going through painful lessons and seasons. It is true that those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. He has set me free to walk in liberty and victory!
God has made me a better person by molding my character through that trying period. I am now very regular in my attendance in school. Not only that, God also set me in a leadership position as a class rep.
I have gained much favor and opportunities from my teachers and I even participated in 2 competitions in school and won prizes for both!
I am going to participate in a nationwide entrepreneurship competition in June! It is a rare opportunity that my teacher has offered to me.
I just want to thank my Zone Supervisor, Catherine, my Cell Group Leader, Lipps and my various friends in the Cell Group and Zone for being there for me. I really appreciate all of their support when I needed it most. Thank you for being there for me and loving me.
Ultimately, I want to thank Father God! For those of you who are like me, who feel that life has no hope or meaning because of your broken family situation, because of your failing grades, and because of your past, I want to encourage you to open up your heart to Jesus and let Him bring a turn around in your life. God has a great future for you, and He has thoughts to give you peace and hope in your life!