by Maxine Cheung
As a psychiatrist working in the public health sector, I’ve had the opportunity to see Hong Kong through the lens of different people. I meet patients who have experienced misfortunes and sufferings, and their hearts grieve from the losses and pain they’ve had to deal with. I meet patients with illnesses that have occurred as a result of chemical imbalances in the brain, and medications are an important part in their journey to healing. There are many struggling below the poverty line, while the materialistically wealthy also have their own legitimate battles. Irrespective of social standing, race or culture, we all, as human beings, share emotions of fear, anger, desire to be loved and accepted, and the need to feel secure and in-control. In fact, we all, as human beings, have a place in our hearts that is reserved for our Lord God, to fill.
Each day at work, I am challenged. Apart from prescribing medications and offering words of encouragement, how can I spread the Good News, Jesus’ unconditional love and the light of salvation to those I come across? It is not easy. I fear being rejected, deemed “unprofessional” (as we are not supposed to outwardly preach at work). Moreover, I do not want to risk “embarrassing” the Christian name. However, I am slowly learning, that perhaps, the first thing I must do, is to acknowledge my own identity and value in Christ. When we seek the Lord, He will draw us into the relationship we can have with Him. And through this relationship, we learn to let Him take our fears, biases and worldly worries. We become more confident in telling others where we draw our Hope from, and the reassurance, faith and empathy we display can help point others to Him and to The Cross.
It is still not easy, even if my head and heart know all this – especially in the recent half year and now the pandemic that threatens us in all fronts. I do believe, though, as I have also witnessed through many individuals encountered in my work, that our God has instilled a beautiful quality of resilience in His creation. May we stand together in this time, learn to look beyond differences and labels, and come together in Hope, Love and Reassurance, to welcome more people into our Almighty God’s Kingdom.