For Dragon Boat Festival this year, Hong Kong resumed the dragon boat race after three years of suspension. As shown on TV and reported through various media channels, participating citizens, organisations and companies were very enthusiastic, and everyone was excited. Whether we deem it as a sport or a festival tradition, dragon boat appeals to many of us.
My church had also formed a team to participate in a dragon boat race before, so I had personally experienced the team spirit that comes with it – with a mutual goal and a clear division of work, team members must work together and be in sync to follow the instructions while paddling furiously to reach the finish line, much like Paul spreading the gospels, where everyone forgets what is behind and strains towards what is ahead – ‘paddling’ towards the goal!
This year, CEDAR is also back with the ‘Barefoot Walk’ event after a three-year break, an event that shares many commonalities with dragon boat racing – having a clear goal, requiring collaboration and team morale. When we are serving in ministry, whether as an individual, a church or an organisation, we are part of the Lord’s team, with Jesus as our drummer. May all believers follow the lead of the drummer, cooperate with each other, and press on toward the goal.
With the aim of calling on fellow believers to fight against human trafficking, the theme of Barefoot Walk this year is set to be ‘Remove Price Tag, Free Body & Soul’. Given the impact of the epidemic in recent years, we have seen human trafficking activities being more rampant than ever.
The trafficked victims are despaired of the image of God; they are regarded as commodities and tools, exploited in various ways for the profit of the wicked. Regardless of gender and age, anyone could be abducted and trafficked, sold into brothels, exploited by companies producing obscene films, or subjected to forced labour in oppressive conditions. It is a situation that angers both humanity and God!
Human trafficking organisations and fraud syndicates are backed by huge multinational groups, and cracking down on these malicious acts is no easy mission. We know that in the face of evil forces, our strength is insignificant to bring about instant changes, but we have our Lord as the drummer, who instructs us to pick up the oars to paddle against Satan’s forces, moving the boat with our best effort in order to free more victims.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.
Chan Pui Si