The first week of the School of Mission was about BONDING.

Through introductions, games, meals, picnics, and more, we BONDED with one another by spending time together.

Through strolls, walks, hikes, and climbs, I also got to BOND with Mother Nature, and be reminded of God’s awesome creation.

But one of the essential things I learnt about BONDING is that it takes TIME. Like the glue that needs time to harden before it can serve as a strong adhesive, or the chicken drumstick I was cooking for the first time which needed time for the heat to get deep into its bones for it to be fully cooked, when we don’t give sufficient time to certain essential processes, the results often disappoint.

That is why this School takes 5 months; why seminary formation takes 8 years (or longer); why BONDING with God, others, and self takes a whole lifetime. We can’t expect a weekend retreat, let alone a half-day recollection transform us in these areas. We can’t expect a good homily or a talk even by a renowned speaker transform our hearts for good.

We are not short of good homilies, good speakers, good retreats etc. What we are most short of is the ability to spend TIME working on ourselves, or more importantly allowing God to work on us without a ‘quick-fix’ mentality. Psychologically it takes 8 weeks for our brain to break old patterns of thinking and behavior before forming new ones. How much more time is needed to make breakthroughs in our spiritual lives?

I thank God for the past 8 years of my seminary life being placed on a slow-burner for God to get deep into my bones. I now thank God for another 5 months, along with 10 other brave companions, to let the truths sink even deeper, the BONDS grow even stronger, and for God to continue working in areas of my life that still need attention.

I would like to encourage anyone whom God might be calling and inviting to give a prolonged period of time to Him, whether it be a sabbatical from work or studies, or a time away from the familiar and certain. The time you give to Him will never be lost but might actually change your life forever. At least that’s what the 11 of us are looking forward to at the end of our School!


Originally posted on Instagram.

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