At the year of 2018, Ruden and I visited Batam island several times to prepare a new Christian Kindergarten school. The process is complicated because Indonesia is still Muslim major, the government deploys very conservative policies in both the education and medical businesses, that tightens the applications which especially against foreign investments. Besides, neither us or the missionary has the relevant schooling experiences, we are just novices. The Bible says that to trust the Lord with all your heart, but not your wisdom (Proverbs 3:5). Admittedly, we are empty vessels only and have nothing to rely on except our Almighty God. We believe in and trust Him to finish the work, for He calls He will complete no matter what. Our role is to obey and follow His lead, and we are in privileges to be used as the vessels to let His glory shine through us, light up the darkness.
We are grateful for God to send us many angels to help. Our lawyer is very responsive, and their prices are competitive. Property agents are professional and hardworking, every site we visit they provide us reliable information. Our local Christian friends agree to join us and take up executive positions, which is the most significant step to set up a charity organization in Indonesia. We wanted to use the same name the “Solar Act” for the new organization, but the lawyer recommended us to use others because names related to the sun, shiny and bright are very popular and many other firms may have used. God gave us encouragement because the name “Solar Act Batam” is eventually registered!
Although we have a smooth opening, the school project soon hits at a sharp corner, and that slows down the entire process. First, it is our own problem as we do not have enough time to stay and check up all the potential sites. Currently, Batam is in developing stage, so many beautiful houses and stores are available, property agents can recommend us hundreds of places if we have time to look around. Second, the confusing local custom frustrates even the best-committed person. Say if we have a preferred site, we need to approach the head of the community and ask for his consents for a new school. However, there is no clear guideline how many households then to appoint one head representative, some areas may be 10 households, other may be 50. We have one experience that the head representative points us to other schools to obtain their written confirmations to allow us to establish a new school in the same community. I believe God is using these incidents to warn us not to be overconfident, for pride will open the door to failure. God warns us to always keep eyes onto Him, not to wave His hand off and run our own path. God wants to protect us for organizing Christian ministries in a Muslim country.
Who is God’s adviser or who gives hand to God? Several months ago, Ruden transmitted USD 120,000 to the Batam’s bank for the kindergarten project and clearly instructed to save this sum into the USD account. However, without any clue that amount was to put in the IRD (Indonesian’s currency) account. We expected a significant loss due to the continuous devaluation of IRD each month. Thank God, the local bank offered us a good deposit interest rate, and that helped. Who will expect the IRD to inflate later while it has a long record of going down? Once again, God’s will is higher, and His path is wider. Now, we enjoy both the interest rate and the high value of IRD which at before we thought it was a mistake.
Some people say we are brave to go into the Muslim and set up a Christian school. Some people doubt with us because we have no experience and network. Some people wonder what drives us to leave the comfortable Hong Kong and involve so much in a strange land? We answer, “it is our glory, our privilege to be called and able to serve.” Through the partnership with God we witness His amazing, we experience His truth and His great love. Kindergarten is a small project in God’s kingdom, but through the process, we experience God’s preparation; He draws good people to us. God tarries us while we are running smoothly because too fast the pace will eliminate our cautions of Muslim’s persecution. God knows we need encouragements while waiting, so His miraculously work in the currency motive us again, showing His always presence and the sovereignty.
Who are we to deserve so much of His caring? To serve is not a burden but entirely a gateway to see His magnificent!
Write on February 21, 2019