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Malaysia held the ACWC service on 7 November 2009 at the Syrian Orthodox Church, Kuala Lumpur. They used rice (in many colours) as a symbol to represent the different ethnic groups of their country with the acronym (Remaining In Christ Everyday). The following testimony was presented for the theme "From Generation to Generation".

The Testimony
Lianawati is an Indonesian who worked in Malaysia since 1996 and this is her story.

Lianawati’s paternal grandparents migrated from China and they practiced Taoism. In 1965, there was a law passed in Indonesia that everyone must have a religion. Taoism was not acknowledged as a religion. So her grandparents joined the Catholic Church. Later her father married a local, but according to Islamic rites. Her grandmother and her aunties from her father’s side all went to church. Lianawati’s mother did not practice her religion. There were many protests from her mother’s family. Lianawati’s family stayed with her paternal grandparents. Like her grandfather, her father had more than one wife, and Lianawati’s mother was the second wife. Later her family separated from the main family but her grandmother went to stay with her family.

Lianawati’s exposure and encounter with God was through her grandmother. She observed her grandmother get up early every morning to sing hymns, read the Bible and pray. Lianawati attended a Christian school. Lianwati and her siblings also attended Sunday school but with much reluctance. She said she used to hide so that she need not go to Sunday school. Gradually her grandmother’s character and personality began to have a great impact and influence on her. Lianawati became very close to her. Her grandmother was a business woman. She remembers her grandmother as a gentle, soft spoken, loving woman and very devoted to God. She gave unconditional and sacrificial love not asking anything in return. She taught Lianawati moral values.

Lianawati was a Sunday school teacher when she was in High School. After high school, she wanted to further her studies but because of financial constrain she could not pursue her studies. It was then that she decided that she will work and save the money for her studies. She came to Malaysia in 1996 to work. She was working in a factory in Ipoh. She experienced cultural shock when she arrived, the spoken Malay language was different from Indonesian. She stayed in a Christian hostel and joined the cell group and attended Church. It was while she was in Ipoh that she had a special encounter with the Holy Spirit and decided to dedicate her life to Christ.

After her contract ended Lianawati went back home and later came to work in Johor. In 2000 she had a calling from God to do ministry work. She returned home and wanted to enroll into the Bible school in Jakarta but it did not take place. In 2004 she returned to Ipoh to work but in 2006 she was called for mission training in Batang. She was subsequently asked to do ministry work among the Indonesian migrants in Kuala Trengganu and Klang. She was pastoring in a church in Sg.Way in 2007 when her mother came to stay with her. Her mother stayed with her for one month and Lianawati witnessed to her mother.

After a few months of her mother’s return to Indonesia one day she called Lianawati and told her that she has accepted Jesus Christ as her saviour and requested to be baptized. Lianawati also has witnessed to her brother-in-law and sister-in-law who have also accepted Christ.

Lianawati joined the Malaysia Bible Seminary in Klang and is currently pursuing her theological studies. She still travels to Kuala Trengganu on the weekends and is active in the Klang area.

by Shakuntala Abraham, Malaysia


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