3 Mar 2023
BY REV DANIEL KOH
“What is man that Thou are mindful of him?” (Psalms 8:4a)
Life has been good to me.
As a kid, I always admire my cousins who did well in their studies. Most of them went to a school of their choice after primary six. I barely scraped through my Primary School Leaving Examination. That’s why I was posted to Presbyterian Boys School (PBS), a school I never knew existed.
My cousin brother who loved Hindi movie and captained his school in Sepak Raga (before it became Sepak Takraw) had just completed his “O” level, scoring a Grade One. He was perturbed by my posting to an unknown school. He asked his friend, on a rainy day with the car wipers not working, to drive us to Victoria School at Jalan Besar. He pleaded with his alma mater to accept me for Secondary One. I remember that the teacher who met us was friendly. Though I did not know what transpired between my cousin brother and the teacher, from his facial expression, I knew my result was not good enough to find a place at Victoria School.
It was a fait accompli. I had to go to a school which took in students like me. It was at PBS, situated at Koon Seng Road with a sports field located at Telok Kurau, that I spent 4 years – no, 5 years – as a student. I did an extra year there because I flopped my “O” level English.
Though PBS was not among the top or even middle-ranked schools, it was in that school that I heard the Gospel of Christ and became a Christian which would turn my life around.
I have no affiliation to a premier school to boast about. But I am proud to have attended a school which took in a not-so-smart boy like me and through its Christian witness, offered me the opportunity to hear the Good News and avail myself to the transforming power of the Holy Spirit.
Over the years – not because of any bold plan I have set out for myself, and definitely not because of any ambition to achieve high goals in life – I think I have done reasonably well. I even went on to do my PhD at Durham university and I used two fingers to type my more than 100,000 words doctoral dissertation!
It must have been the nudging of a very patient God who opened opportunities at the right time and in the right place that brought me to where I am today, celebrating my 73rd birthday, blessed by the presence of my loving family and supportive friends.
So yes, life has been good to me.
More accurately, it is the Lord who has been extremely good to me!
“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me bless His Holy Name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.” (Psalms 103:1-2)