Nuri, a unique name, a unique friend.
She was my classmate in 6th Form, most influential friend God placed in my life to bring me to Him. My almost 2 years in 6th Form was spent much with her, especially after i came to know the Lord in Upper 6. She was the President of the CF, it was through her i picked up guitar and introduced me to my new-found family of Christians. After STPM, we parted and never saw each other again...until last 3 months, almost 6 years later.
I received news, Nuri had a major bike accident in Penang, which left her in coma. She was half paralysed and the right side of her skull, broken. That part was soft...my heart sunk, i was more than shocked. I asked, "God, why?"
Weeks later, i received better news. She was conscious but had temporary memory loss. Those who visited her said she was somehow, different. I couldn't comprehend and i wanted to see her so much. A week later, when i received news that she will be transferred down to KL, i was more than glad but at the same time, my heart was filled with mixed feelings. I got her sister's mobile number, contacted her and arranged for a visit at her home. I remembered...it was set on a saturday evening.
That week itself, i went to a screening of an inter-faith dialogue by PKVUM between Ahmed Deedat and Paul Scoberg. Little did i know what was in stored for me left the greatest footprints in my life thus far...
Somewhere through the middle of the screening, thoughts upon thought kept flooding my mind. My heart was pumping faster and faster and i was began to get confused, i was scared....but no one in the room realised. I couldn't stay another minute in the room anymore, i couldn't bear to take in another word...i walked out of the room. I was breathing hard outside, i looked up to the sky and i remember saying, "God, i'm scared. What's going on?"
No one knew, my Faith was shaken.
I went home that night, getting more and more confused. "Am I chosen?" I was so afraid that I'm not a child of God, that I was never predestined to be saved, that i will lose God. I can't afford to lose Him...I'll be lost,I'll have nothing to lived for.
I sms G, one of my good friend. He became worried as well. Next few days were chaos for me...so much was happening within me. I looked fine from outside but in me, it was a mess. That Saturday morning, i found myself ended up in Salvation, that was when i 'stumbled' into The Case For Faith. I picked it up and began reading, i couldn't stop the whole afternoon but still, my 'mess' hasn't subsided. I sms G again and phui this time, they kept assuring me but i wasn't convinced. As i was gettting ready to drive to Nuri's, i decided i needed solid 'counseling'. I sms jacksaid to arrange to meet him after my visit.
I drove alone to Cheras, to a place i've never been according to the directions given, never expected it was such a breeze to find the place. As i walked into the condo, i couldn't even express how i felt...i haven't seen Nuri for almost 6 years. I wondered if she remembers me?
Finally, i stepped in. There she was...lying on the bed, aunty was feeding her dinner. She looked...different, so different. Her long hair was gone, replaced with really short hair because they had to bald her during surgery.
"Hi, nuri" (trying to sound cheerful) "You remember me?"
"Of course...yen chin lah"
Our conversation begins...and yes, indeed, she was different. The way she talks, the way she thinks, the way she is. She seem to sound 'younger' than her age, so much 'younger'. Then the question came abruptly, "yen chin, do you still remember God? Are you still going to church?" My heart sank, it hit me hard...i do not know why. As we carried on our conversation, i learnt more. She hasn't been active in church, was living-in with her bf 2 years - a catholic. She is no longer in the church she was, something happened in the leadership...her pastor lied and she was disappointed. Her mom heard our conversation, I could see that she wasn't really happy with what had happened over the years and she spoke, "It was God who chosed you, not us who chosed Him. No matter how far you've gone, He'll bring you back. Once you are chosen, you are chosen and no one can take that away"
Those words made my heart sunk again, this time really hard, so hard...
I walked out from the condo that night with those words kept ringing in my head and heart. My steps stopped, tears began to flow, uncontrolled. I called G. I cried.
That visit changed my 'mess' and left deep footprints. It gave me the assurance i needed. I sms jacksaid, i needn't see him anymore. I didn't need theological answers that night. God was so real.
But my shaken Faith changed my walk from then onwards. I realised how much i lacked solid, intellectual food on Christianity. I realised how important it was to not just to believe based on experience and circumstances, i wanted something more. I began to read again - The Case For Faith, The Case For Christ, Mere Christianity, The Great Divorce and now, re-reading Who Made God? (contributors: Geisler, Zacharias, Strobel, William L Craig, LT Jeyachandran, Robert White). I began to search for more...jacksaid has pushed me hard in my quest to learn intellectually in Christian knowledge. It was tough but realised i must carry on. I admit, it is still tough...
My Faith has been strengthened more these days. Yes, Faith and doubt can co-exist.