SAN FRANCISCO – Together with the performances brought by a Christian group specializing in Cantonese song performances, influential Chinese Christian scholar Dr. Thomas Leung dedicated a Cantonese song sharing and evangelistic conference. The mixing of Cantonese songs and messages was very smooth, and the answer to a life of blessings is in God inside of Jesus Christ.
From Sept. 6 to Sept. 7, the Cantonese song sharing and evangelism conference were held at San Francisco Golden Gate Christian Reformed Church, Silicon Valley Alliance Church, San Jose Chinese Baptist Church, and Crosspoint Chinese Church of Silicon Valley.
For the first half of the sharing, the music group dedicated songs which portrayed the human relationships of love and hate, sorrowful separations and joyful reunions, letting the people deeply experience the limitation of mankind and the despair in face of destiny. In the song “Why” that the performers invite the crowd to sing together, the lyrics asked the questions of why there are so much pains and sorrows, why does the fighting never cease, why is happiness always temporary, why are there barriers between humankind and that no faces reveal the true identity, asking when can they find the such haven. The touching melody left a very deep impression upon the participants.
In the last song titled “How to be Safe”, it made many people search for the answer of how can one feel safe. At the end of the first half, the song titled God Loves the World provided the answer, and also set the stage for Dr. Leung to give his message.
Then, Dr. Leung took the spotlight and commented that life is just like how many of the songs described, where it is filled with pains and sorrows and despairs. Every time, he thinks about the shameful history and crooked pathway in the last century of China’s history and the path that his parents walked, he would be filled with infinite sorrows. As the society advances, our living standards are improving. Although the Chinese in North America can possess quality materials, but there are still much unhappiness. Men is the happiest when working on something creative, but we often times are working like robots. Each day, our work is filled with boredom and unhappiness. In this generation, there is no creativity in work, and not many people truly care about you. It is a very cold era. Then, how exactly can we be joyful and to have a life filled with blessings?
Next, Leung sang the hymn titled “God Created Heaven and Earth”, and said that God was filled with joy when he was creating this world. The life of Christians should find creativity from God, who is the source of creation. As the sons and daughters of God in this universe, we should be jumping up and down like a child holding on to the father’s hand.
In the second half of the event, the Cantonese singing group performed songs that were filled with the message of salvation. The choir of the song titled “A Joyful Life” more deeply revealed that the life filled with blessings is found inside of Jesus Christ.
Stepping on the stage the second time, Leung shared his inspiration from the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Before becoming a Christian, he had difficulties relating the resurrection of Jesus with himself, but he realized one day that resurrection is the experience to begin newly; although we have many sins, if we believe in Jesus Christ, then we can also resurrect, begin newly, and posses a happy life. .
Further, Leung shared that Jesus Christ is the answer to life’s joy through his faith experience. He said that before becoming a Christian he wanted to understand about life and be joyful, so he studied Buddhism, Confucian, various traditional Chinese religion, and philosophies. In one of his interaction with some Christians who wanted to evangelize him, he discovered that although these Christians have never read any Buddhist texts nor have they researched about philosophy and religion, they are always joyful. Leung thought that “Joy is like being crazy.” No matter how much he pondered, he did not understand. Then, after he researched Christianity and believed in Jesus Christ, he discovered that he understood why the Christians whom he met before were also joyful even though they have not read Buddhist texts nor studied any philosophical works, “because he has also become crazy.” He realized that the ultimate point of all of these religions and philosophies that he studied is God’s amazing love and amazing grace, which is the salvation of Jesus Christ and the answer to gaining the joy in life.
Lastly, Leung said that we as Chinese needs to rebuilt and restart a new life, a joyful life, the answer is inside of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ can let us have a new future, new hope. Not only can it change us, but it can also let us help others change.
[Editor's note: reporter Ruth Wong from San Francisco contributed to this report.]