HONG KONG – In the prayer meeting for Sichuan earthquake held on July 13th, Rev. Sam H. C. Luk, executive director of Hong Kong Chinese Christian Churches Union, comforted the audience with the word of God and strengthened them to have sufficient will to pray.
Facing painful disaster, many people will ask, “Where is God.....Did God allow the disaster to happen….why is it that human beings have to suffer…etc.” When the Israelites, the chosen people of God, were faced with a dead end while being chased by the Assyrians, God comforted them through the prophet Isaiah.
Psalms 46 proclaims to the world that God is our refuge and our strength, an ever-present help in trouble. In Psalms 46, it says, “Though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea......God is within her, she will not fall, God will help her at break of day.” Luk personally led the attendants to sing the song that he wrote and it was written based on Psalms 46 with the title of “God is my refuge.”
Luk comforted the participants, “Because God is the creator of the heavens and earth and rules over all living creatures, earthquakes and tsunamis are natural phenomenon. These disasters are realistic, but we just need to believe that God is with us, so we shouldn’t be afraid.”
“If God is not in control, then these disasters wouldn’t have happened; Satan isn’t behind all these disasters, but God has allowed for them to take place in order to let us know that he is God.” Luk added.
Luk reminded the attendants that not only are these disasters under God’s control, but God also granted men three abilities to win so much more. The first ability is endurance and perseverance. He gave an example of a three-year-old boy, who had both of his legs pressed after the house collapsed, yet he endured the pain and patiently waited for the rescue workers to come to the rescue and he sang a song that his teacher taught him. Because of his singing, he was found. He waited for about seven to eight hours. The first words that he said after being saved were “Thank you, Sir!” Because of this kid’s patience, he saved himself.
The second ability is the power of love. Many of the miracles of survival in the earthquake happened because of love. Luk said that love comes from the heart, and is the evidence that man is created in the image of God. Love did not originate from any selfish reasons. A teacher used both of his arms to protect four of his students and carry the weight of all the bricks that had collapsed. After the rescuers arrived, he has died. Because of his sacrifice, many lives were saved.
The third ability is wisdom. Human beings are smarter than all creation, because the spirit of God is inside of men. Luk said that in the earthquake there were two students in a school, who have never met each other, but after the building collapsed one is on the top and the other is on the bottom. The student on the top said to the student on the bottom to never close his eyes, or else he will end up sleeping forever. While they were waiting to be rescued, they continued to speak to each other and help each other maintain consciousness. Finally, they were both saved and had formed a bond of life and death.
In addition, there was a principle who was very wise, for he knew that a big earthquake will happen in Sichuan. He would have the entire school, both faculty and staffs, to conduct the earthquake drills four times per year. Although he was criticized by many people for doing this, when the earthquake occurred, all of the students and faculties escaped in time, and there were no casualties.
Luk said that Christian organizations and Christians are usually the first to arrive at the disaster zone, which shows that the difficulties cannot stop men, but what men couldn’t do, God will help. He pointed out a response of Dr. Moody gave when asked what he would do if a school gets caught on fire, will he continue to remain in the classroom and pray or will he escape immediately. Without hesitating, Moody said that he will escape and pray at the same time.
“In times of disaster, we shouldn’t only pray, but we must also take action,” said Luk. The latest official report of the estimated reconstruction cost turned out to be one thousand billion RMB. He said that even if all the Chinese churches, ministries, and believers from around the world together try to fund-raise, they would probably fall short of the total amount. However, what the global Chinese churches can do is ollective actions.
At the end of this month, HKCCU will send a surveying team to Sichuan to determine the actual needs and areas where long-term services are needed. Luk hopes to use the disaster relief efforts to witness that Jesus Christ is the Lord and the Lord for all mankind.
Quoting the dying remarks of the infamous evangelist John Wesley, Luk said that the greatest blessing in his life is that God is with him.
[Editor's note: reporter Eunice Or contributed to this report.]