God Loves Me - Owen Yong

Growing up, a sense of worthlessness has always plagued me.


I was often compared to my sister who was an all-rounder in academics and sports.


Progressively, as a child, I began believing that good performance could gain me love and acceptance from others.


I knew that if I wanted to make it and have friends in life, I needed to perform well.


In secondary school, I wanted to ‘rebuild’ my reputation. So, I tried my best to excel in various things and even joined the student council. At that time, I made a very good friend and we would often hang out together.


However, one day he stopped hanging out with me. His change in attitude left me distraught and abandoned.


To adapt and survive school years, I tried making new friends but the results weren’t welcoming. It felt as though my dreadful primary school experience had repeated itself.


That year, our school band was geared up to win a gold medal in the Singapore Youth Festival - the biggest competition for schools and everyone were excited! Instead, we won a silver award.


Rumours has it that I was the cause of the band getting a silver award. When I heard it, I was extremely shaken and didn’t know what to do. So, I acted as though I wasn’t aware or affected by this rumour.


Through these experiences, an overwhelming sense of failure overwhelmed me. Eventually, I turned to computer gaming to escape reality. Nevertheless, my gaming friends would make hurtful remarks and call me names.


With so many failed attempts to gain favour among my friends, I hit rock bottom and started questioning about my existence. I drowned myself in negativity and suppressed my emotions because I rationalised that having emotions was unnecessary!


Being invited to Impact Life Church was another brand-new environment for me. This time, I tried a different approach in ‘building’ my reputation. Since I became so adept at hiding my emotions, I wore a mask to give people the vibe that I was a ‘chill’ guy.


In church, I rarely shared my opinions and would never do anything that would make me look weak. I was always painting the perfect picture life.


But the fear of being outcasted never stopped haunting me.


It became so bad that during my parent’s divorce and grandfather’s funeral, I didn’t have a shred of emotion inside of me. When people consoled me, all that was left inside me was a heart of stone, voided of any emotions.


My turning point came when God spoke to me during a worship experience. He spoke so clearly that I was placing my identity and worth in my abilities, and I didn’t truly know who and whose I was.


At that moment, the scales fell off my eyes and I realised why I couldn’t be happy for people in their victories, because I always wondered where was mine.


I was completely lost and shaken. I knew I could only cry out to God but I struggled to acknowledge my brokenness. I tried fighting against the Holy Spirit’s conviction and kept reasoning that my current “perfect” self was the real me. But the truth was I was fearful of being abandoned again if I revealed my “imperfect” self.


However, the desire to find my true identity and understand God’s love began to grow as I realised that I couldn’t love others although I wanted to.


As I opened up to my discipleship group about this issue, my fears melted away when they responded with so much love and patience.


I thought showing my true self would make me an outcast again but they simply listened without any judgment and condemnation. They encouraged me and even wanted to walk this journey with me.


I thought showing my true self would make me an outcast again but they simply listened without any judgment and condemnation. They encouraged me and even wanted to walk this journey with me.


In that moment, I felt God’s love flowing through them. After so many years, the lie that I am unlovable and unaccepted was broken for the very first time.

I started to share my struggles to my Lifegroup and some even cried as they empathise with me.


This encouraged me and sparked a desire in me to love my community the way they were loving me.


When life stopped revolving around my fears, I was able to care for others and build meaningful relationships.


‘My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.’ - Galatians 2:20

As of now, God is still doing a major renovation in my heart. While it has been uncomfortable at times because growth is uncomfortable, but I am thankful that God cares more about my growth than how ‘perfect’ I am.


© twentytwenty by impact life church