An Abundant Life in Christ

Posted on

21 Apr 2021


Tricia Lim

I was born into a family which prays to our ancestors and different Chinese gods. One of our values is to be filial to our parents and obey them.

When I was born, my grandmother (my father’s adopted mother) wanted to swap me with a baby boy at the hospital. My parents objected as they preferred their own. However, my father felt obligated to obey her whom he was indebted to, for bringing him from China to Singapore. Thankfully, he managed to persuade my grandmother and finally she agreed to keep me.

I have an elder sister, and 2 younger brothers. My father is a traditional one who does not show affection to his children. But he doted on me; maybe because in those days people usually favoured boys and I am the 2nd girl in the family. I suppose he tried to make up to me for being the unloved and almost abandoned one at home.

We lived in a kampong (little village) with my father’s siblings. There were 11 of us including my grandmother. Every weekend, my parents would bring us to visit our maternal aunties and uncles. We were closely knit with our extended families. During the school holidays, I would stay over at our relatives’ homes. I had a simple and happy childhood.

When I was 13, we shifted to a flat because of the resettlement by the government. By then my father’s siblings were all married.

On 4 Dec 1981 in the wee hours of the morning my father was suddenly killed in a tragic car accident while going to work. He was a fishmonger. I was 15 then. Life was never the same again from that day onwards.

My family was traumatised by my father’s death. The pain from the sudden loss was beyond words. To make matters worse, some of our relatives began to look down on and distant themselves from us. I guess they were afraid we might implicate their lives and saw us a burden. The innocence and joy of my childhood was gone overnight as my father was gone.

My father was the sole bread winner and my mother then a homemaker was left with 4 children, aged 17, 15, 14 and 12. My father did not have savings or insurance. The house we were staying in was still on mortgage. You could imagine our devastation. The emotional and financial difficulties that we faced then were overwhelming. It took a toll on all of us.

In 1986, I graduated with a diploma and started working. I worked in the day and at night, I attended classes. I did that for 5 years. My goal then was to work hard so that I could help support my family. I had no one to depend on and was determined to make it in life.

When I was in my late 20s, I was doing well in my career but I felt disillusioned about life. Despite the good income and status, I did not feel happy. I felt lonely and empty. I tried feng shui, going to temples, palm reading, changing my name, etc. You name it and I probably have tried it. But none of these helped at all.
One day, I followed my sister to church. That’s the first time I had ever stepped into a church. The Pastor said Jesus can help transform lives. I decided to give church a try and see where life would lead me. That was in 1994.

I attended church service and cell group regularly. I memorised bible verses. I began to find meaning to life. When I met with challenges, I prayed to God. I have a community of God’s people to journey in life together. In 1995, I made the decision to follow Jesus and was baptised.

The Bible in John 10:10 says The thief (satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I (Jesus) came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

I grew up with a sense of unworthiness, fear of lack, was envious of others and had a deep need for the approval of others. It was perhaps linked to my near abandonment as a baby girl, the loss of my father, the rejection and poverty I suffered. These were the baggage I carried due to the circumstances in my life. God has set me free from all these bondages over the years and I am happy to share that I no longer live to please others. I now believe in living my life with love, joy and peace because of God’s goodness and love for me.

I’m now a homemaker with 2 young adult children ages 20 and 23. He has indeed given me an abundant life, life to the full. I lack no good thing because He is my God.

Even though my father was tragically taken away from my life at a young age and it hurt me deeply, I’m so grateful that God has found me, taught me and blessed me. Most importantly, He has transformed me so that I can now live life with the right perspective.

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