Our Last Goodbye to 老婆婆…

On the 11th April, I was in school. I received news that she’s almost losing her breath.. I really wanted to go visit her for the last time.. I just wanted to share the gospel before she leaves.. I got people to pray for her, and to God be the glory that during the period of praying, He kept her alive; in fact, very alive until evening.. There’s was definitely enough time for someone to have shared the Good News with her, but I don’t know if she heard the gospel… I heard from relatives that during that period, she even talked to each of her 11 + 2 children (1 passed away, 1 couldn’t be reach) and was even able to tell them accordingly what she wants for her funeral.. It’s true.. And I went to sleep in hall, still praying within my Spirit that she’s ok. It was almost 1 am when I went to bed. 

On the 12th April, I was woken up by the alarm at about 9am. Immediately, I went to check my phone. 1 message recevied. ‘laopopo passed away at 1.49am last night..’ I was shocked. Images of time spent with her flashed back.. Fear engulfed me as I thought of the wake.. I was afraid. Afraid that what happened to Mum at grandpa’s wake would happen again. Afraid that I won’t know how to react to the ritual.. Afraid. What made it worse was Aunt saying that she won’t be going back for the wake… “I am more than a conqueror in Christ who gives me strength.” I held on to this promise for the next few days…

On the same day, I dragged myself to the usual place that I study — meeting room. I was supposed to meet EunL but decided not to because I know I wasn’t in the right condition to. I went to the meeting room, in hope that there would be people around so that I won’t have to be alone, but no, there wasn’t. I put down my stuff, and I tried to start studying. I couldn’t. Tears started to flow uncontrollably.. JasC came in so I tried to hide my puffy eyes but still, she saw me crying. Thank God for sending her at that moment, if not, I believe it would have been worse. 

On the 14th April, Mum, sis and I took a budget flight to Ipoh, after which we took a cab to Ayer Tawar. The flight was terrible.. The turbulence was so bad, I thought the place would crash any moment. I really kept praying in my heart for journey mercy.. It’s true… At the same time, I trusted my life in God’s hands. 

We reached Ayer Tawar at about 5.30pm. The moment we stepped out of the cab, I was lost. Not physically but mentally. It felt like there was alot of things going on.. But there wasn’t really much.. “过来过来,要跪下来爬过去拜老婆婆…” At that moment, I really wanted to cry already.. But I held myself back because I needed to be strong for my mum, whom I know is really upset. I walked to her coffin and saw her lying peacefully inside. My heart broke and thoughts started to flow again as I looked at her.. I really wanted to talk to her for that last time.. 

We went to change into the clothes that we had to wear for the wake; the white shirt and black pants. And the next moment, the ritual started. It was crazy.. It went on from about 6pm till nearly 12am.. It’s true.. 

There were alot of thoughts in my head when I went through the ritual with the rest. But one thing I know for sure is that: I follow the ritual not because I believe in what they believe. I do it only because I respect 老婆婆. And I don’t want to create a situation where if I don’t do it, people get stumbled and think that I am not filial and disrespectful. So if you ask me why as a Christian I still did that, that’s what I will tell you. 

I went to 五舅公’s house to sleep that night.

On the 15th April, we woke up at about 9am. Hanged around at his place for a little longer till about 12pm before we went to over to the wake again. At 老婆婆’s house in the afternoon, we played mahjong, took photos, ate and chatted till about 5.30pm, and the rituals start again. Again, it ended about 12am. Went to shower, eat supper at 十字路, then went back again to play mahjong through the night. It’s the last night of the wake already and we’ve all decided to stay awake throughout..

On the 16th April, by about 8am, almost everyone was already awake. We were all getting ready for the last ritual before 老婆婆 was buried. Before we moved off, we did some phototaking with 老婆婆 for the last time. We walked the route that 老婆婆 used to love to take; it’s about 2km, before getting on the bus to the cemetery. Everytime the coffin is being lifted, we were to face in the direction away from the coffin. I don’t know why but they said it’s not good to see the coffin being lifted.. Well.. So I just followed to appease them. I really wanted to witness the whole process of the coffin being buried, but we were made to leave in a haste. So we left for 小舅公’s house to put 老婆婆’s 灵位 there. After that, we went back to 老婆婆’s house to eat, clear up, and settle stuff before everyone parted. 

Ah chai jiu jiu drove us to KL, and we took a coach from there to Singapore. Reached at about 2am, took a cab home and slept at about 3am. 

Well, this doesn’t seem like it’s very interesting to read but it’s really all for memory sake, and who knows? Perhaps next time I can come back to this post to tell my kids about my 老婆婆. (: 

In Loving Memory of Dearest 老婆婆…

Passed on: 12th April 2012, 0149hrs
Dates of wake: 12th April to 16th April 2012 (Thurs to Mon)
Place: Sitiawan, Ayer Tawar

Rest in Peace, 老婆婆…

老婆婆, 虽然你现在不在世了,我相信你还是能听到我想对你说的话。我有很多话想要对你说,但是一切都来不及了…

还记得小时候,几乎每年都会到Sitiawan(Perak)探望你。每当你知道我们会回去的时候,你都会很热情的准备迎接我们。就算是三更半夜到达你那里,你也坚持不去睡觉,等我们到你的家为止,才肯休息。我们在你家的那几天,每个早上你都会陪我们到巴刹去吃早餐和买零食。在家时,你也会一直陪我们谈天说笑,从来都不说累。从你那样的招待,我看到了你对大家的爱护与关怀。我看到了你的细心与爱心。

让我唯一心酸的是,为什么你的儿女都那么残酷地对待你?为什么他们就不能理解你的心意?到你老了也不能理解你地痛苦?难道他们不知道人老了最需要的就只是爱护与关怀吗?在他们小时候,最需要你的时候你都会不顾一切地在他们的身边;那当你最脆弱最需要他们的时候,他们又在哪儿呢?我不明白。

老婆婆,在我认识主后,我一直都很想介绍祂给你认识,但是却从来,并且再也没有那个机会了。我之所以没有跟你分享神所赐给我们的爱,是因为我害怕亲戚们(也就是你的孩子)会怎么看待这件事。我不想惹麻烦,但是因为所以,我让你失去了认识主的机会。我也不会知道你能不能拥有永恒的生命。就因为我没有告诉你神对我们所做的一切…

之所以会写这些,是因为我要记得老婆婆。我要记得她的好。写完后,我也不能再哭,因为我必须坚强。我必须看好外婆和妈妈。我不能让她们有事。

星期五或六我们会到Sitiawan去attend她的丧礼。在这期间,我和我的家人真的很需要你们的支持与祷告。

Pray for my Grandma, that despite being new in the faith, she will stand firm in what she has chosen to believe in. That nothing can shake her faith in the midst of all this. Pray that in her fears, she will call out to Jesus. Pray that God will use this situation to help her to cling on to Him and be closer to Him.

Pray for my Mother, that she also will come to know and taste of the Lord’s goodness. Pray that in the midst of her fears, she will learn who God is, and also call out to God in her weakness. Pray for the blood of Jesus to cover her that she will be protected from the evil spirits that may try to attack her (again). Yes, it happened a few years back at my grandfather’s wake. 

Pray for me, that as I stand strong in God, I will be a pillar for my family to lean on in this period. Pray that God will use me to share His love to my family, and that they may come to know the Lord through me. Pray for grace, strength, covering, power, authority, and wisdom that I may stay strong in this season. 

Every blessing You pour out I’ll turn back to praise. When the darkness closes in Lord, still I will say ‘Blessed be Your name’.

No words can describe how I am feeling

As I received news that great grandma is going to pass on anytime soon, my spirit can’t help but to feel burdened about sharing the gospel with her. Yes, she may not be able to respond in usual ways like we normal human beings are able to anymore, but I really do believe that if God will make a way for her to hear the gospel before she leaves, God will also make a way for her to hear the gospel in some way or another, and even allow her to respond in her own ways. I don’t know how, but I believe God is bigger than any other. I really believe so.

I don’t know what to do now. I really want to share the gospel with her but I am so far away from her.

Dear God, I don’t ask that You bring her back to normal. Lord I only ask that You will keep her till she hears the gospel and responds to Your love before taking her away. Lord I don’t know what’s gonna happen in these few days before I get to see her, but Lord I still choose to believe that You have great plans for her, and I pray that You’d send a person to her to share Your love with her. God it is Your desire that all mankind be saved, so God, I want to claim this for great grandma’s life. God I pray that You will save her soul from eternal punishment, and let her be able to enjoy eternity with You. God this is my earnest prayer unto You. 
In Jesus’ name I pray,
Amen.