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"I am Not the Same" Course Graduation Ceremony and Thanksgiving Highlights

The course on "I am not the Same: Seven Steps to Strengthen One's Spirit" was held monthly beginning August 2007. In order to provide a more solid learning experience for the participants, they were given homework containing devotions at the end of every class session. A total of seven sessions have been completed. On 20 March 2008, the 1st "I am Not the Same" Course Graduation and Thanksgiving Ceremony was held for the 38 graduating members of the class. Some of them brought along their family members and friends at the graduation ceremony. They were thankful for witnessing the changes experienced by these members. Some of the members even extended invitation to their relatives to join the next course.

The meeting began with a self-served dinner. After worship, many members shared how the course had helped them. They experienced transformation brought about by the word of God, enabling them to renew their strength. Below is some of the sharing by the members:

  • What impressed me most was the teaching that we should not overly focus on our own problem. We should, however, be alert and pray for ourselves. During the last class session, Mrs. Chan exhorted us not to give up on ourselves which really encouraged me. I constantly remind myself not to give up on myself.
  • I intended to only bring my son to attend the class; however, I discovered that the class was a great help to me personally. I remember that there have been many erroneous thoughts from the previous generation or traditions. However, the word of God is like a strong cleansing agent that wipes away the negative thoughts.
  • I have had depression for many years. As I attended the course, I was surprised to find out that Mrs. Chan is able to memorize so many Scriptural verses. The homework given at the end of the lecture was also very helpful. I learned to use the word of God to meditate and pray for myself. The homework was more effective than receiving a needle injection or taking medicine. I will store away the homework exercises for my future use.
  • This course enabled me to discover that my knowledge of the word of God was only shallow. Although I have been a believer for many years and have attended church meetings every week, I felt that my relationship with God was only superficial, never got to know more about God and His word at a deeper level.

Some group leaders also shared their testimonies and felt that their contributions were very minimal. These group leaders helped lead group sharing and prayed for the members after the lecture ended. However, they were able to witness the changes in the lives of these members. These members became joyful as the course progressed and we were thankful to God. One of the group leaders was a doctor who would make referrals for his patients who experience mental difficulties. He would refer them to psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and counselors for follow-up treatment. The doctor originally did not expect to contribute much as there were only seven class sessions for this course. He was later surprised to witness the amazing works God did in the lives of these individuals. He saw with his own eyes how the members improved over the course of time, and was astounded when he witnessed the amazing works of God.

Mrs. Chan, the speaker of the course, shared that individuals needed to have experiences of success that they can recall. These experiences could be divided into different phases in which individuals can complete them one by one. This course provides just that opportunity where the members can complete one class session one by one. This would create an experience of success for the members. They are then able to think with strength and depression would leave them. This is a biblical way of doing things. For instance, it is written in the Scripture, "after eight days", "on that day", "in that day"… During the time of Easter, may the members experience that they are a new creation in the Lord, with a new life that belongs to the Lord.

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