二○一八十年十一月十七日／十一月十八日 Click here for English version
Theological Education to Serve the Times
Rev Doris Li
Over the past few years, I have seen notices on the notice boards along the corridor of Main Church classrooms about courses offered by various theological seminaries in Hong Kong. They feature all kinds of evening theological courses, advanced studies as well as online courses for lay church members. I am encouraged that many brothers and sisters of NPAC are taking part in those courses, spending time after work to study the Word of God. Indeed, the Word of God is sweeter than honey and more precious than much pure gold. Nevertheless, do not think that you are done once you have completed those courses. I encourage you to watch out for any calling of God on you to receive full-time theological training so you can serve Him as a church minister or missionary. There is much need in our times for servants of God.
Theological seminaries aim mainly to groom believers called by God and equip them to become future preachers. Theological seminaries and churches complement each other. Last year, the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church Union Hong Kong conducted a survey and found an aging trend among member churches. They also noted quite a high dropout rate among the young people. The discovery was echoed in the summary report of the 2014 church survey by the Hong Kong Church Renewal Movement. The report cited :a lack of fellowship counselors: followed by "dropout of young believers" as the major concerns of Hong Kong's youth ministries. In particular, the dropout of believers upon admission into universities was the greatest concern of the churches. In response to the trend, our theological seminaries hope to recruit more young people and prepare them for the mission of shepherding the new digital generation. Parents and fellowship leaders who find believers wondering whether God is calling them to be His servants can help by exploring His calling with them, praying and looking upon God for guidance.
In different times, God calls different people to reap His harvest, preach the truth and shepherd the church. Have you heard the still small voice of the Lord Jesus? Has He called you to enter into full-time ministry to serve the Lord of life? You may be trying to figure out what to do with your life, or just toiling all day. Or, you may be quite satisfied with your current life situation. Whichever your case, are you prepared to spend time to come to God with a quiet heart, to pray and seek His will to see if you are being called? Jesus said, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest field" (Matthew 9:37-38). In the old days when the prophet Isaiah heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" he replied, "Here am I. Send me!" (Isaiah 6:8) How about you? How would you respond to the call of God?