Thomas Cheong was a self- made and self-centered man. His philosophy in life was simple - he trusted in his own ability to solve any problems in life. Even though he came from a family of idol worshippers, he was an atheist at heart. All these changed during the SARS epidemic in 2003. His outlook and philosophy in life went through a transformation.
At the tail end of the SARS epidemic, Thomas was taken ill. He had a high fever that persisted for a few days. Worried and fearful that he could have been affected with the virus, Thomas was hospitalized in Tan Tock Seng Hospital for four days. His whole body was aching badly and his head pounding badly. He felt weak and spent and could hardly sleep. Thomas went for a series of tests, but the doctors could not find anything wrong with him. One doctor even suspected that he had a mild heart attack. They discharged him after four days and gave him two weeks of medical leave. And before all these conditions were resolved, another developed. His soles hurt badly and were wreaking with pain that he had difficulty even to walk around the house.
At wits’ end, Thomas shared his condition over the phone with his good friend John, who is a Christian. He immediately invited him to the Miracle Service at Lighthouse and told him that he would fetch him.
At first, Thomas rejected the invitation outright, but with John’s persistence, he finally accepted the invitation. Joan, his wife, did not accompany him to the service in his first visit. In fact, she had tried inviting Thomas to her church on numerous occasions but was turned down by him.
So one Saturday, Thomas and his friend John came to the Miracle Service. When the service started, he just immersed himself in the worship, singing and sermon that he felt no pain in his soles momentarily. During the salvation call, Thomas’ resistance melted and he responded. He was fully aware that upon receiving Christ into his heart, he could not go back to his old lifestyle and must deal with his bad habits. He too realized that he could no longer depend on himself anymore. Thomas knew that someone more powerful than him had to take over. He is none other than our Lord Jesus Christ.
After the service, when John drove him home, Thomas felt a warm sensation in both his soles and the pain progressively ebbed away. He realized that God had already touched him. Hallelujah! Subsequently, to find out more concerning his suspected heart attack, Thomas went for a heart scan and was totally cleared of any heart condition.
Thomas did not confide to his wife that he had already received Christ. John called up a few days later to check on him and spoke to Joan about the good news. Joan was surprised and elated to hear of her husband’s conversion. Since then, she noticed a great change in her husband. He used to be home only once or twice a week for dinner. He would rather spend time drinking with his friends and come home late. But after he had accepted Christ, he has been coming home every evening for dinner. Now he is more open and confides more in her. He is also more communicative and spends time reading the Bible. Thomas also attends cell regularly and serves actively in a ministry.
Thomas himself admitted that he used to be very unforgiving toward his wife. He would be so angry with her that he would hold grudges. He would give her cold shoulder and not talk to her for weeks. But these days, he is able to forgive easily. Christ is indeed real in his life. He knows he can depend on Him in every circumstance and His presence is with him all the time. Indeed, our God is a wonderful Savior and Friend.