Over three days at the beautiful Mercure Johor Palm Resort & Golf, Malaysia, more than 200 members from Wu Yu Zhuang’s pastoral district, including zones under the care of Wu’s wife Audrey Ng, Lee Yi Lun and Tan Yah Lan, participated at Refresh Retreat 2009.
Wu, a pastor at City Harvest Church, led this enthusiastic entourage of families and young adults through three days of play and prayer. After a raucous welcome, the retreat kicked off with a game of Human Monopoly. The entertaining adaptation of the popular board game saw members pitting their wits against and playing alongside one another. If there was any initial awkwardness, it was effectively obliterated with this game. It wasn’t just fun and games.
At the session on the first night, Wu deliver an impactful word on “persistent faith”: “One does not allow reasoning to stop oneself from receiving the miracles of God.” Over the next few sermons, he taught his members how to not grow weary when faced with an uncertain wait, which is also the acronym for Withstand, Anticipate, Intercede and Trust.
Edmund Ng, 29, a business manager, was amazed at how uninhibited members could be when in an environment of trust. Besides meeting many interesting people, he adds, “It was a time of spiritual renewal, of receiving a transforming touch from God.”
John Butterworth, 63, president of Intelagents Asia, who hails from Manchester, England, joined in the fun despite the obvious age difference. He says, “It has been a great bonding session with people whom you do not get a chance to meet during weekly service.”
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The key “emcee” for the retreat was Bernard Loh, 29, a familiar face in City Harvest Church as he is a regular actor in church dramas. Loh led the members in a number of well-executed programmes such as the interactive pool games, in which members had to play cooperative water games that not only encouraged teamwork but also allowed them to compete. Another highlight was Wu demonstrating his prowess in a relay.
Members also strutted their stuff in a “Hercules” competition, delivering — with great aplomb — performances that brought down the house on the final evening. Refresh Retreat 2009 touched all the lives and brought laughter to every member, as it equipped them to be triumphant, and more than conquerors through Christ.