God’s Mercy and Grace in a Family Tragedy
On 21 December 2013, my cousin, Jordan Pang, passed away in a gyrocopter crash while he was having his summer break in Australia. He was only 18 years old. My family was shocked and devastated when we heard the tragic news. As I wrote this testimony, I still feel sad but I am thankful to God for what He has done in the lives of my cousin and family.
Jordan, his mother (my aunt) and I were the only Christians in the family. Jordan’s funeral was a Christian one. Many of the family members and friends had the wonderful opportunity to listen to God’s word during the funeral and memorial services.
My father and brother went to Australia to attend the Christian funeral service. My father shared with me that during the service, one Christian song, “Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)” was very moving and he clapped along to the praise songs. I could never imagine my father, who was not open to God and religious activities, would actually participate in Christian praise and worship.
I thank and marvel at God for touching my father’s heart. He also shared that he was touched by the pastors who showed great kindness and care to him and the family while they were grieving. I praise God for these brothers and sisters in Christ who poured out their Christian love and ministered to the family.
As a young Christian, I wondered where Jordan is now, after his death. Is he really in heaven with God? God is truly amazing. He removed my doubts by speaking to me through a dream my aunt had. My aunt told me that for a while she was in denial that Jordan had passed away, as he looked like he was sleeping peacefully. She shared with me that one night she dreamt Jordan spoke to her and assured her that he is okay and happy now. This dream assured me that Jordan is now with God in heaven.
My cousin’s death has inspired my aunt to start a Christian project to raise funds for needy children. In the same dream, my aunt told Jordan that she did not get to say her final goodbye and hug him before he died. But Jordan told her in the dream that there are many underprivileged children who need her love. He said; “When you hug these children, it is like hugging me.”
My cousin’s death is a tragedy for the family but God is good and gracious. I thank God that He used this tragic incident to enable my non-Christian family members to experience His love and presence. It has even spurred my aunt to start a charitable project for needy children. What the apostle Paul said is true; “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
To my dear cousin, Jordan, I Ms you. See you again in heaven!
Author: Amanda Pang, 19 years old (Amanda is a youth leader at LYnC Youth Fellowship, St Andrew’s Cathedral and presently an undergraduate at NUS.)
First published in The Courier, April 2014.