I remember my mother would wake my siblings and I up very early in the morning (5.45pm) to say the morning prayers which usually starts at 6.00am. She had a couple of strategies: she would either start singing hymns with such a loud and unmistakable tone that would wake anybody up no matter how interesting the dreams were; or she could switch the bedroom lights on, pull off the duvet, open the blinds and windows and allow the early morning breeze to blow in. I do not remember she ever failed on her mission.
On Sundays, we would dress up to go to church. It was a choice that could not be refused. As a little child, I attended the children’s church though reluctantly for reason(s) I can not recollect. I graduated to the adult church (as was the norm, thank God there was no need to resit!) and I remember sitting with my sister and a family girl friend in the pew in the middle row close to the window.
Of all I remember, I loved the hymns. We sang them in vernacular. I hardly could read them but I got to know the lyrics by heart after hearing them sung over and over again. Years and years after, these hymns flood through my mind and I sing them frequently. They bring ‘sweetness’ words fail me to characterise. I have literally bound them around my neck and written them on the tablets of my heart.
And this takes me to Joshua. In Moses’s era, there was the Tent of the Lord’s presence that anyone who wanted to consult the Lord would go into. Moses would go into this tent to converse with the Lord face-to-face and once the conversation has ended, he would leave the tent. However, Joshua, a young guy and Moses’ protege, never left the tent. He practically lived in it; he had his bed, toilet, laundry, kitchen etc there.
The case must have either been that Moses asked (mandated) him to stay in the tent to await messages from the Lord or Joshua, out of zeal, requested for permission to stay therein and commune with God. Which ever the case may be, Joshua came out to be a great vessel in God’s vineyard.
It is a good thing to have something to pass down to your children and grandchildren. Of all things to pass down, ensuring there is a relationship with Christ should be the main priority.