Most of us had never expected that we would experience a 6.0-magnitude earthquake in Kota Kinabalu in our lifetime as our state Sabah is outside the Pacific Ring of Fire, unlike our neighbouring countries the Philippines and Indonesia. The tremour we felt in KK early morning on 5 June lasted for only about 15 seconds but for someone like me who stays in a high-rise building on the 9th floor, when the building started to shake and then sway from side to side and the furniture and fittings also started to make noise, the 15 seconds or so seemed to last forever. The fear and the emotional waves of aftershock stayed with me for quite some time as we struggled to get back to our daily lives in the days to follow.
We have since slipped back into our daily routine but emotionally a lot of us are still very fragile with the harrowing trauma that took place on Mt. Kinabalu. I have been bothered by one nagging question since that fateful Friday — am I ready to die?
We Christians have the promise of heaven and we are assured that is where we are going when we die and there we meet Jesus face to face, but when there is this fleeting glimpse of us bidding farewell to our temporary dwelling on earth so suddenly, are we REALLY ready to go?
We have been reading Every Day with Jesus (EDWJ) as our daily devotion and fittingly the theme for May/June is Our True Home. On one of the days the topic was “Eager to go” with scripture taken from Philippians 1: 23– 24 “I desire to depart and be with Christ… but it is more necessary for you that I remain” and the writer for EDWJ mentioned that Paul was eager to go but willing to stay for his presence was necessary on earth but as for most of us, we are willing to go but eager to stay! It resonates with me and more so now after the recent earthquake; I have been asking myself if I were eager and ready to go… have I done what God wants me to do on this earth and have I fulfilled His purposes for me so that when I am called to my eternal home I can give an account of how I run the race of my Christian life to my Saviour with fearless confidence?
While we mourn for those who perished on the mountain, praise the mountain guides for their selfless bravery and give up hope in making sense out of the insensitive behaviour of some of our political figures and the farce they put up at this time of trial, a lot of us were woken up knowing that we can no longer afford to be in a slumber. Let us take advantage of what little time we have left to re-examine, reprioritise and realign our lives so that we are ever ready to meet Christ face to face. When we do so, we will not look back in our earthly lives and wish we had done more to advance the Kingdom of Heaven or glorified His name to a greater degree. We would want Jesus to look at us lovingly and give us a pat on our back and say, “Well done my faithful servant, you have fought the good fight, finished the race and kept the faith”!