Our heartfelt appreciation to our friends and partners for sharing their reflections on the poems.

May these sharings bring you comfort and rest as you prepare your heart for Lent.

But the mob shouted, ‘Crucify him, crucify him!’

Jesus, on the night He was betrayed in Luke 22 instituted the Lord’s Supper, also commonly known as Holy Communion. He told His disciples to partake the Holy Communion as often as they could in order to remember Him. The next day, He was nailed on the cross and gave up His life. And by His death, He paid the price for man's sin and destroyed the power of sin and death in the lives of all who trust in Him.

Friends, you see Jewish leaders plotted against Jesus, Judas betrayed Him, Herod and Pilate tried Him, and the Roman soldiers executed Him. The people who were among the mob who shouted, ‘crucify him, crucify him,’ were responsible for His death, but, Bible tells us it is our sins that nailed Jesus on the cross and Jesus died to bring us to God as in 1 Peter 3:18: “Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.”

Ever since Adam and Eve sinned against God in the garden of Eden, human beings have been corrupted by sin. We rebel against God as we set our hearts on accumulating power and wealth for ourselves, and we don’t take good care of what God gives us. We are too darkened by our sin to find our own way back to God. And God’s justice requires that there be a price for our sin.

Yet despite our faults and unworthiness, God loves us and wants us to be reunited with Him. To make our reconciliation with God possible, Bible tells us that the only way is through Jesus’ death on the cross at Calvary.

Friends, we could never live a life worthy of God on our own. Jesus lived a life without sin on our behalf and He died the painful death our sins deserve. John 3:17 says, “God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” This made Him the ultimate sacrifice —once and for all satisfying the demands God’s justice required. That is why we call Jesus “the Lamb of God.”

In the sacrifice of Jesus’ crucifixion we are shown the depths of God’s love for us and the lengths taken to save us from our sins. And in Jesus’ resurrection we see God’s triumph over death, pointing towards the promise of eternal life in God’s presence. It is because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, our lives will never be the same. This gift that we have been given can never be taken away from us, it will never lose its power, and it will never cease to exist. New life in Christ is the best gift we can ever receive.

Bible tells us that Jesus gives His life. In other words, this is an active act on His part. No one takes His life from Him, He lays it down of His own will. He was not a victim. Jesus was a willing participant in His crucifixion and death. Jesus willingly went to the cross and took the wrath of God for our sin, a sacrifice willingly made. Jesus did this because He willingly wanted to, because He was filled with love for those He died for.

The good news is that He didn’t just make salvation possible for us, He actually made it happen for you and I individually. He personally did it out of His love for you and I. His love on the cross was personal. That is what we call such love as amazing grace!

Christ’s death puts beyond all doubt the fact that God loves us. It assures us that no matter what life throws at us, we can trust that “he who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all . . . will also graciously give us all things” (Rom. 8:32).
Foong Daw Ching
Church of Singapore
“The Son of God who gave His life to end the sting of death and strife.” Because Jesus paid it (our debt of sin) all, we are given eternal life. Because Jesus paid it all, there is no more strife. We are sinners reconciled to the holy God. We are dead corpses who are now raised to life! We are most blessed people indeed.

May you be warmed by the wonderful grace of God in the gospel of Jesus Christ!
Senior Pastor Jason Lim
Gospel Light Christian Church
How often have we only thought of ourselves as the instrumental persons involved in God’s wonderful plan for redemption. The focal lens almost always captures Christ and us. However, this delightful poem turns the camera focus on an inconsequential animal chosen from our Creator’s vast collection. No other animal has had the honour of being chosen not just to be a beast of burden but the bearer of truth! First, courageously bearing and blurting the truth of God from his humble heart about Balaam’s wilful and deadly choice. Second, gallantly bearing the Son of Man through the gates of Jerusalem: the Way, the Truth and the Life.

Before we dismiss the inconspicuous service of others, let us remember this donkey who is remembered for his obedience over the Creator’s choice of the locus of his service.
Pastor-in-Charge Rev Dr Niam Kai Huey
& Rev Tan-Yeo Lay Suan
Sengkang Methodist Church
Jesus called his Father’s house “a house of prayer”. The place of prayer had become a confusing, squabbling, stinking mass of people, animals, and business deals. Our redeemer’s cleansing of the temple illustrates how concerned He is with the purity of worship.

Jesus came to the temple as Lord of the temple, with the authority to purify and take charge of the temple. He came to cleanse it and at the same time replace. As Messiah, Jesus had come as the Lamb of God which takes away the sin of the world. He had come to be the Passover Lamb. He had come to die on the cross for your sins and mine. He would prove that he was Messiah by dying and rising again!
Pastor Kelvin Leong
Full Gospel Assembly
Love did not take the easy way out. Love was not a label on God’s heart. Love was demonstrated in the sinless divine-human willing submission to the excruciating flogging and death at the cross to redeem condemned sinners from eternal damnation. The love for us all has kept Jesus on the cross.
Pastor Chng Joo Ching
Zion Gospel Mission Church
How irrational and comforting God's amazing grace is.

This poem paints a picture of a compassionate father embracing his lost son back home. It reminds me of the parable of the prodigal son told by our Lord Jesus Christ in Luke 15:20-24. The amazing grace of God was demonstrated through this parable. The father was ready for his son to return. He was running towards the son and embracing him when he saw him from afar, just like our Heavenly Father loves and cares about us. Regardless of how far we may have wandered, he sees our hearts and comes to embrace us and restore us.

Our Abba Father is not looking to punish us but to bring you back to life to have the welcome-home party begin. God is ready to forgive us and desires to restore and renew our covenantal relationship if we confess our sins and repent. There is nothing we can do to deserve this precious gift of a relationship with God. Indeed, our journey with Christ is never based on what we have done or achieved or who we are. Though we were sinful and beyond hope, God reached out to us and initiated reconciliation through Christ. How irrational and comforting God's amazing grace is.

How far is your heart from the Father? May the poem encourage us to take time to ponder upon God's grace in our life.
Ms Khor Siew Khim
ACTS Bible College
Psalm 60 – Reflection
For the director of music.
To the tune of "The Lily of the Covenant." A miktam[b] of David. For teaching. When he fought Aram Naharaim[c] and Aram Zobah,[d] and when Joab returned and struck down twelve thousand Edomites in the Valley of Salt.

O God, you have rejected us, broken our defenses;
you have been angry; oh, restore us.
2 You have made the land to quake; you have torn it open;
repair its breaches, for it totters.
3 You have made your people see hard things;
you have given us wine to drink that made us stagger.
4 You have set up a banner for those who fear you,
that they may flee to it from the bow. Selah

5 That your beloved ones may be delivered,
give salvation by your right hand and answer us!
6 God has spoken in his holiness:
"With exultation I will divide up Shechem
and portion out the Vale of Succoth.
7 Gilead is mine; Manasseh is mine;
Ephraim is my helmet;
Judah is my scepter.
8 Moab is my washbasin;
upon Edom I cast my shoe;
over Philistia I shout in triumph."
9 Who will bring me to the fortified city?
Who will lead me to Edom?
10 Have you not rejected us, O God?
You do not go forth, O God, with our armies.
11 Oh, grant us help against the foe, for vain is the salvation of man!
12 With God we shall do valiantly;
it is he who will tread down our foes.

Reflection - Psalm 60
As I reflected on Psalm 60, I could not help but wonder about the paradox of the entire psalm.

There is a portrayal of the Lord judging harshly, seemingly, against His chosen people (v1-3, 10), and we see David crying to the Lord for His mercy and for Him to restore His people once again (1). This judgment from the Lord could arise from sinfulness, disobedience and not worshipping the Lord.

Then, we see the Lord doing justice for His people against their enemies (v5-9). And He will rescue them and deliver His people from their oppressors.

It is like the Lord holds His children accountable for their actions and conduct before Him. Yet, He will never allow Himself to be indifferent to their oppression from some of their sworn enemies.

There is also this acknowledgement of the futility of trusting in man's help (v11). In the NIV version, the psalmist calls it a worthless exercise to depend on men to deliver and save!

We also see the various names of cities mentioned (v6-9) and how the Lord will subdue them for the sake of His people. Vengeance is mine (Romans 12:19), and the Lord fights our battle (1 Samuel 17:47, Psalm 24:8), and this must comfort, encourage and strengthen all who belong to the Lord. Through God, His people shall do valiantly because the Lord Almighty is with them.

From the reflection of Psalm 60, we learn that the Lord holds us accountable for our actions and conduct as a child of God. He will judge and discipline us to direct us back to fellowship with and worship of Him.

At the same time, the Lord we worship will not stand afar and be indifferent when we face any opposition. And, He will respond to our plea for help and deliverance. The intensity of the opposition does not matter, for it is still in the Lord that we will triumph. He fights the battle on our behalf.

Pastor Neo Ban Hui
Salem Chapel
"Is it not amazing that the same One who is the Shepherd of our souls is also the Lamb of God, offered as the ultimate sacrifice? Indeed, for the one sheep that has been lost, the Shepherd seeks high and low, far and wide, for He is full of love of compassion. Yes, indeed, Jesus Christ is our Shepherd, Savior, Sacrifice!"
Pastor-in-charge Rev Khoo Kay Huat
Living Waters Methodist Church
We, sinners, saved by grace. The justification into His righteousness is a process. Yet there were times when we go wayward, we lose our ways, but in His Grace, from past to present, we are always found by Him and in Him.

Still Amazing Grace depicts the present. It relates to the present world, the present circumstances, near and not far. It speaks of the Presence of God.

God in His Amazing Grace saved me. I want to come to Him, it is what I can do FOR God.

As God releases His abundant grace, in His Still Amazing Grace, He invites me, the lost, the undeserving unto Him. He gives confidence and He bids me to come. His Presence is ever near and I can feel He literally holds my hands. Now that I am in Him, God wants to work WITH me continuously as His presence is from everlasting to everlasting.

He provides salvation with His Amazing Grace. His Grace is still amazing as He secures His everlasting Presence in us.

Ephesians 2:10 God created us anew (salvation), so we can do the good things He planned for us (God working with us)

Let us be in total dependence of His Presence as He leads in His Still Amazing Grace!
Pastor Monica Choo
Community Outreach
Elim Church
Dr Kenny Tan beautifully depicts the entrance of the Lord Jesus Christ to Jerusalem during the Holy Week in parallel with Psalm 24. Only those who has “clean hands and pure heart” perfectly understand the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. People might misunderstand or even place false expectation on Christianity, yet those who remain focus on the glory of the King will be blessed and given fresh insights.

Thank you, Dr Kenny Tan, for this beautiful piece of poem. Not only it touches my heart, and it also refreshes my soul. I find it useful especially in this season of Lent. Reminded on the great love of our Lord Jesus Christ and the profound healing work of His ministry.

I pray that whoever takes time to read and meditate on this poem will find restoration and healing too.

To God be the glory!
Pastor Desmond Kok
River of Life Community Church
If you were told you have only a few days to live, what would you do?

Your family members and close friends would plan to bring you to eat your favourite food, visit the places you like most or you may want to say good bye to some people who are closest to you.

You may want to spend the last days to visit your home church for a last look, prayer, confession and give thanks to God.

Jesus knew he had only ONE day to live on this earth. What did He do?

He gathered all His disciples at the Upper Room, had a last meal with them (and instituted the Eucharist). He washed His disciples’ feet as their Master (and established the greatest Humility).

He knowingly washed the feet of His betrayer, Judas Iscariot (and taught us the deepest meaning of Love).

He taught a new commandment, ‘that you love one another; as I have loved you’ Jh 13:34 (and demonstrated sacrificial love).

Jesus knew what to do (poem):
this night I learnt the God of love
had planned this from His throne above
each step unfold the scriptures show
the Sovereign King is in the know

THURSDAY… as we reflect, as we ask are we “in the know”?
What would we do??

I would continue to,
Love in pain, struggles and hardships
preserving friends and fellowships;
Bear the cross, glory I pray
Christ knows, my Saviour the ray

Pen your thoughts, review and reflect regularly, never too young to start, made the last days meaningful and Christ-like.
Albert Low
Missional Care Committee Member
Ever tried to draw a straight and perfect line with a pencil? Without the guidance of a ruler, it is impossible.

The human heart is born tainted by sin. Our fallenness leads to our brokenness. We get bent out of shape by the sins of others, yet seemingly forget how twisted our intents can be when we hurt others.

Praise be to God for His grace that shines!
His Son came with grace and truth to heal all our wounds
Praise be to God that He draws straight lines our of crooked ones!
Our Ruler leads us into holiness and purity.

Friends, embrace the grace that He provides!
Give Him your tears and pain Your fears and shame.

God bless you and your organisation.
Senior Pastor Pacer Tan
Lighthouse Evangelism
A Reflection
I am looking at You, Lord, and at Your disciples. Just before You entered the road of Your passion, You washed their feet (John 13:1-17). I am looking at them, Lord. Was one of them maybe silently posturing his displeasure because no one had come to wash the dust off their feet? And maybe behind this irritation lay the “which-of-them-would-be-the-greatest” (Luke 9:46, 22:24) – that sense of self-entitlement. I am looking at the disciples and their misguided entitlement for the places of honour.

I am looking at You, Lord. You knew all their frailties and failings. You saw the ugliness of their self-entitled combative spirits. But this did not stop You from loving them.

I am looking at You, Lord. The washing of the feet of a houseguest was a common courtesy in ancient times. It was a demeaning task and mostly done by a slave. So when it came to the washing of feet, I suspect no one was willing to stoop to the level of a slave to wash anyone else’s feet, even the washing of Your feet! I am looking at You, Lord. Despite everything, how You “loved them to the end” (John 13:1). You loved them unreservedly, fully, completely.

I am looking at You, Lord. Looking at Your quiet admonition to this competitive-fuelled self-entitled spirit. You did the very thing Your disciples pridefully refused to do. I am looking at You, Lord. To “learn to live”, as You taught the twelve “a lesson same to humbly serve is not a shame”.

I am looking at You, Lord. Your call to me to reveal the perfect love of God in this world. To be willing to not keep anything for myself. For my love to be as full, as uncompromising and true as Your own.

I am looking at You, Lord. Your invitation to the wound of self-giving as the antidote to self-entitled living.
Rev Shannon Chan Mei Ming
Faith Methodist Church
In this season of Lent, Dr Kenny's poem Basin, which reflects on Jesus washing the disciples' feet in John 13, reminds us not only of the joy of being served by the king of kings, but also of the privilege of loving others as Jesus has loved us, empowered by the love that Jesus has lavished upon us. This season, may we who have been loved by the Lord go forth and be a blessing to all those around us.
Pastor Foo Yuk Yee
Living Praise Presbyterian Church
“A masterly appreciation of the Master’s propitiation.”
Rev Dr Alby Yip
Senior Pastor, Zion Bishan Bible Presbytarian Church
Associate/Family Mediator, Singapore Mediation Centre

Each of us has a journey laden with items of baggage,
many know not whether burdened or they are in cases.

Years like passing clouds,
not knowing soon in lulls.

Matter once matters, matters no more,
as feeble aged frail to small,
Blessed is me as a channel of the call;
sharing God’s love in every hall.

Through words and songs singing,
showering gospels in and telling.
For each, God is waiting,
for all, God is inviting
ever reaching the unknowing.
As shadows fast fainting
privileged for me in serving.
Lisa Lai
Love and Care
Reflections on the poem TEMPLE

We’re led to the scene in the temple courts as recorded in John 2:13-22. When Jesus entered the temple, He saw merchants selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and money changers doing brisk business. He was infuriated. He made a whip of cords and drove them all out. He was consumed by zeal for God’s house, the very place dedicated for worship. Jesus’ cleansing of the temple underscores for us the seriousness of worship, as God views it.

Quoting from Scripture in His rebuke, our Lord Jesus pinpointed the heart of the problem: “It is written, ‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are turning it into a den of robbers!” (Matthew 21:13, NET). The people came to worship God. The cattle, sheep and oxen were items meant for sacrifice to God. Money changers were there to help facilitate, so people would have the correct coinage to pay the temple tax. All apparently arranged for their convenience. But in doing so, they had blatantly chosen to redefine worship. Worship was reduced to a religious ritual, and vaunted helpfulness for the convenience of devotees was really a front for greed. Jesus saw through their veneer of religiosity. They had desecrated the place designated for worship. There was no reverence for the Holy God.

Jesus brought to our attention that any perversion to the understanding of worship will draw the Lord’s righteous anger. Indeed, anyone who comes to worship God ought to do so in reverence.

We’re alerted, indeed forewarned! We should come to God humbly, knowing that it is only by His grace that we can enter into His presence. And we’re mindful that we approach Him in and through Jesus, our Blessed Redeemer. We ought to examine ourselves. In our daily worship, and congregational worship on the Lord’s Day, may we be mindful that we should never come with superficiality and self-centeredness. May we come with reverence for God. Our Holy God will be totally unimpressed with outward show and performances which we sometimes refer to as “worship”. May our worship be acceptable and pleasing to Him.

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting.
(Psalm 139:23-24, NKJV)

Thank you loving God that we can approach Your throne of grace in reverence and with joy. Thank you Lord Jesus for Your salvation, making it possible for me/us to come into Your holy presence. Thank you Lord for the joy of knowing You and Your enablement to walk in Your ways.

In Jesus' precious name,
Dr David LT Yap
Missional Care Committee Member
“I do not know him” (Lk 22:57) – “Non novi illum” – are words of denial uttered by Peter when confronted by the question of his association with Jesus, who was on trial just before the crucifixion. Peter’s fear is very much that of our own, living as Christians in a pluralistic world which casts doubt on the authenticity and uniqueness of Jesus Christ. By our fear and lack of faith, we also deny him with our words; and, even more damaging, with our deeds. This poem brings us to a place of self-examination with the question: “How often do we/Also deny Thee?” But the poem does not leave us in a state of regret. Instead, it leads us to a place of repentance and re-commitment, so that our denial turns to “Ego non negare” – “I will not deny it”.
Ms Jackie Jia Chyi Hwang
Singapore Bible College

By his wounds, we are healed. Simple words with profound impact.

Our earthly journey is filled with twists, turns, and forks in the road. At times, we experience pain, and often, these wounds present themselves physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Some of us will carry these wounds for extended periods, and this collection of poems by Dr Kenny Tan is written for such times.

Though Jesus’s sojourn on earth was some two thousand years ago, and his ministry was for a brief season of thirty-three years, his footprints continue to leave imprints on hearts until today. In seasons of despair and woundedness, meditations on the wounds that Jesus Christ suffered will encourage readers that our Lord myself is fully aware of, and personally experienced human suffering. For the very purpose of alleviating our eternal suffering, He gave Himself, as the ultimate cure, to turn our temporal wounds into eternal healing. Rich blessings to all the readers and their reflections.

Jim Tan
St Luke's ElderCare