2014 Los Angeles/Las Vegas – James Song

Coming Out of My Hidden Season


 

“For nothing is made hidden except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret except to come to light.” -Mark 4:22

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” -Ecclesiastes 3:1

This is my testimony of how God used missions to bring me out of a hidden place and really highlight me for His purpose. One aspect of the Los Angeles/Las Vegas ministry trip that deeply impacted me is the importance of trust. I want to share with you how this trust within the team broke off doubts and insecurities, and how it established all of us in new levels of authority to minister.

In the beginning when my team members were announced, I sensed that establishing team unity would be difficult. I had never met anyone on the team except Eunice Ko, and even her I had met only once, a year ago. Similarly, the members of the team had no idea who I was and some didn’t even know I existed. Even having Pastors Christian and Erin wasn’t very comforting, as I had no personal relationships with them. But I soon realized how wrong my predictions were. The pace at which the team soon bonded and become unified was off the charts. As went through missions training together and invested time in each other, we built up powerful Kingdom relationships. Once in America, people kept on assuming that we had been ministering together for many years. Imagine their surprise when we told them that we all pretty much met for the first time only one month prior, and that some of us we weren’t even leaders until recently. We were walking out in the spirit of sonship and the trust with which New Philly sent us out as a team.

Our team leader Diana Suk has a nickname, BTLE (Best Team Leader Ever), and she helped to maximize this trust. Diana would pray for us individually when we felt insecure, showing complete confidence that we were ready to minister powerfully in the field. In terms of team roles I knew I would be an excellent transporter. I was a bit unsure about being the treasurer. But soon enough, the team’s complete trust in me to handle the team’s money had raised me to a higher level of responsibility and authority. Seeing the level of trust Diana put in each one of the team members facilitated the level of trust we could place in each other. Her constant encouragement and well thought out investment of 1-on-1 time really helped me come out of my introverted shell. It helped me to really bond with not only the team members but also the college students at Burning Tree Ministry, the youth at Full Gospel Las Vegas, with Pastor Sunny and his team of FGLV leaders.

It was also a tremendous blessing that the team preachers were PC and PE. They placed their complete trust in me to go out with them and work for God’s Kingdom. I still remember the moment we met for team briefing before the first evening service at the BTM retreat. PC told Bo and I that we would be sharing our testimonies. I know that New Philly isn’t a place where just anybody is given the mic. And to have the boss tell me, a baby reserve leader who hardly knows anything about anybody, to take the stage and speak to the congregation! This was the moment where the father gives his son THAT approving nod. That nod that speaks John 14:12 – “…whoever believes in me will do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do.” That moment, all doubt and fear was driven out and I was filled with anticipation and excitement. Sharing my testimony then gave me the chance to lead a portion of someone’s H&D session for the first time. As I was leading this brother to freedom, it was a time of realisation that I had been equipped to do this all along, and that any labels that I had put on myself (such as “baby reserve leader”) were irrelevant. I know that not only I but also the entire team was jumping into our newfound authority. We felt so free and right as we were ministering to those who were so thirsty for God.

Having the unending trust gave me a feeling of not only being pushed up from below, but more of being lifted up from above. Through the leaders on the team, God had switched off the quiet old me and brought out the side of me that was unmistakably expressing the New Philly DNA. As I started allowing this new self to show more, it was so easy to see that the Kingdom advances through relationships. In both LA and LV people were sharing that they were so blessed by their interactions with the team.

Thinking on the power of relationships, I have to apologise and repent about how distant I’ve been. I realise that in being inactive about engaging in a deeper level of fellowship, I have been actively robbing people of the blessings that God has blessed me to spread. Without establishing Kingdom relationships, I would not have been able to connect with the BMT and FGLV family at the same level, and I certainly would not have been able to minister to them at any level.

As I continued to break out of my shell, God continued to reveal my identity. My biggest struggle before missions was that I felt unequipped and unworthy to go out. But between the time I applied for missions and boarded the plane I was patient. I was eager. I was so hungry to have a pure heart and clean hands, to be praying in tongues, and to speak prophetic words of encouragement into someone else’s life. It was a strange mixture between anticipation and insecurity. Once again, it was trust that pushed me over those walls. Each and every time the team was called up for altar ministry, to pray in the Spirit to usher in the fire, to go around and pray with the laying on of hands, to lead H&D, PC and PE were saying “we have full trust and confidence in you” and they were right to! Every member of the team carried the fire and spread it. Holy Spirit was laying people down left, right and centre, making people cry, making each other cry, setting people free.

Throughout my year at New Philly, there was a particular word that was repeatedly spoken over me- that I am a tree. The image is from Psalm 1:3, “He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither.” Now that many have witnessed me bearing the fruits of so many prayers, there is no going back. My prayer request is that God continues to bring other young men, especially in LA and LV, out of their hidden seasons and plant them as His oaks of righteousness in their communities. May they bear fruit far beyond what I’ve shared with you today!

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