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ENJOYING CHINESE NEW YEAR

Over the decades, Chinese new year celebrations have seen changes: from setting off firecrackers to no firecrackers, from giving pristine newly-minted notes to using almost-new notes. These days, families even order food in rather than fuss with a home-cooked reunion dinner.  In recent years, because there are so many siblings, my in-laws and their children/grandchildren now tend to gather at one relative’s home for convenience. My wife and I are visited now, rather than us doing the visiting.

In China millions criss-cross their country just to get home for a couple of weeks to affirm family ties, and a good thing too.  For some parents who have flocked to the cities for jobs, this is the only extended time during the whole year when they will see their children and surely it is a time to treasure. Similarly, many Chinese living or working in other countries will surely gather for some semblance of the festive season even if it is not a public holiday.

There are some things about the Chinese New Year which as Christians, we need to be careful about: the emphasis on luck and prosperity, the reliance on the zodiac for guidance through the year, gambling and some superstitions particularly with numbers which happen to sound auspicious.

Yet the positive aspects outweigh considerably, such as the focus on family, keeping up with relatives, wishing each other blessings and good health, filial piety - these have remained for which we can be thankful. The fact that non-Chinese friends are also welcomed to join in these celebrations is laudable. We can certainly affirm those things which we celebrate culturally which are affirmed by Scripture.

During the Chinese new year festivities which last a fortnight, we have lots of opportunity to visit and engage with relatives and friends whom we might not see during the remainder of the year. It is a good opportunity to catch up with each other and even make new friends along the way. 

The apostle Paul, in Colossians chapter 4 asks for prayer that “… God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ… that he may proclaim it clearly, and that his conversation be always full of grace..”  These are good things to keep in mind as we circulate and celebrate the joy of a new year. We can enjoy all the good things of the season as well as look for opportunities to share with family and friends, the greatest blessing of all – salvation in Jesus. Have fun!

Pastor Graham

 

BCC Vision

“Like a tree planted by
streams of water,
which yields its fruit in 
season” 

(Psalm 1:3)

Worship Venue

11 Woodlands Close #03-40 
Singapore 737853

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11 Woodlands Close #03-40 
Singapore 737853

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