“If you told me as a youth that I would grow up to become the Chairman of the Board of Focus on the Family Singapore and the founder of two national movements (Yellow Ribbon Project and Dads for Life), I would not believe you.”
Addressing his young audience at the FOPx GO Conference 2019, he reminded them that God knows what’s inside you even when you don’t.
Wong elaborated: “The tree is in the seed. The oak tree, one of the largest trees in the world, is in the small acorn. No matter how hard you look at a seed, you cannot see the tree inside it.
“When I was your age, I was also just a seed who could not see the tree inside me.”
God knows what’s inside you even when you don’t.
Having grown up in a non-English speaking family, Wong knew what it was like to start from the bottom. There was a time when he would stutter whenever he spoke. Everyone would laugh at him, leaving him feeling embarrassed and broken.
When he was in Primary 1, he was bullied by a boy shorter than him. And even after he became a prefect in Primary 5, he was still taunted by a group of boys.
He asked: “How can someone like that become someone who can start two national movements?”
As a teenager, Wong wasn’t a Christian, but he believed that there was a God out there who could answer his prayers. So he would pray: “God, why did you put me on earth?” It was only at the age of 21 when he came to know Christ that doors started to open.
Having received a scholarship for his studies, Wong later graduated from university and worked for 24 years in the public service, serving in various capacities such as Deputy Director/Chief of Staff of the Singapore Prison Service and Senior Director with the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (now the Ministry of Social and Family Development).
TURNING THE HEARTS OF FATHERS TO THEIR CHILDREN
As part of his work in the areas of family violence and child abuse, Wong once heard of a child who had ended up in a coma through abuse. It was something that broke his heart, and he felt it must have broken God’s heart too. So Wong asked God once again what He wanted him to do about such brokenness in the world.
Pressing God for an answer, it was at a conference in Israel that he saw a vision of God’s hand coming down to hit the nations. A lion’s roar was shaking the nations and in the midst of it, he saw Jesus grabbing children while crying out: “Let the children come to me!”
Through this vision, he saw children through God’s eyes for the first time. And the only two words he could muster to describe how God saw His children were “so precious”, “so precious”, “so precious” because God sees a great destiny in every child.
After returning to Singapore, Wong was on fire at work to influence policies, create programmes and impact the nation. But a few months later, he found himself asking God again: “Is there something else You haven’t revealed yet?”
One day during a worship session, Wong received another vision. In it were pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, each representing concerns like teenage pregnancies, child abuse and family violence.
As he had already been doing much in these areas, he desperately pressed in to ask God what the burden was. After a while, the puzzle pieces came together and the words on each puzzle disappeared.
The puzzle piece was flipped over and revealed the word “Fathers”.
Wong shared that he was reminded of how he stumbled across Malachi 4:5-6, printed on the back of a DVD while at the Israel conference.
Wong continued: “I thought to myself: ‘Great! God will turn the hearts of the fathers.’” But God told Wong to read his Bible again. Rereading Malachi 4:5-6, Wong found that God had sent Elijah to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children.
But what was so special about Elijah? God reminded Wong of how Elisha had approached Elijah to ask for a double portion of blessing.
Wong shared that this detail might not be out of the ordinary for most people. But he broke down and wept when he read this. For years, he had been working with children who had abusive fathers or fathers who abandoned the family, so the thought of fathers who would bless their children with a double portion brought him to tears.
God sees a great destiny in every child.
Wong shared: “Can you imagine if fathers were to impart the right kind of double portion, like Elijah to Elisha? Double the anointing, double the miracles, double the impartation. Every generation will get better and nations will be transformed!
“But sadly it is not happening because fathers are imparting the wrong kind of double portion and every nation is getting weaker. But maybe Singapore will be different.
“Instead of turning towards pornography, alcohol, gambling and other vices, the fathers of Singapore will turn their hearts towards their children.”
Wong shared that it then became clear what God wanted: For fathers to impart the right double portion, and to father the fatherless. This vision led to the birth of the Dads for Life movement in 2009, which was officially launched on International Men’s Day.
TURNING THE HEARTS OF CHILDREN TO THEIR FATHERS
But even after this, Wong still felt like his work wasn’t done yet.
He said: “It also written in Malachi 4:6 that the hearts of children will be turned to their fathers.”
Wong realised that there was no one pioneering a movement to help the next generation build strong families. He saw a gap that needed to be filled, and God soon led him to start FamChamps.
Launched in 2014, FamChamps is a student initiative that supports families and raises future Family Champions. Children learn how to communicate and express their love to their parents, as well as better understand their parents’ perspectives.
Wong continued: “FamChamps has always been more than a programme. For me, it has always been a movement to turn the hearts of children back to the father.”
“A lot of young people don’t believe in marriage or the family because of what’s happened at home. But the hope of FamChamps is to restore the youths’ faith in the institution of marriage,” he explained.
“I choose to believe that young people are the solution to the problem. We’re challenging young people to save the environment in schools today. Why can’t we challenge young people to save the family, to protect the family and to build strong families?”
A year after FamChamps was launched, Wong received another dream from God during Singapore’s year of Jubilee after a group of fathers came together to pray for the nation, families and for the next generation over 50 days.
He recounted: “In that dream, I saw a father carrying a baby. I walked towards the father and saw a baby who only looked to be a few weeks old. The father then lifted the baby above his head and I looked up to see the baby. After a while, the father leaned towards me and handed the baby over with his arms still stretched high up above his head.
Wong then shared the interpretation he received: The father in his dream represented God the Father, the baby he was carrying represented Singapore and Wong represented the fathers. But he was curious why Singapore was the baby, especially since he received this dream when Singapore had just turned 50 years old.
Wong revealed what God later told him: The baby represented a reset button for Singapore, as God wants to lift up the next generation.
“Through your generation, He will lift up Singapore for the world to see. He is fathering the next generation. Family is important to Him,” he told the young crowd, declaring in faith that there were dreams within each one present.
In closing, Wong recounted sharing about this dream at a Focus on the Family staff briefing.
Afterwards, a staff member came up to him to show him a photograph. On it was a group photo of the first batch of FamChamps and behind them was a large egg they had painted. They had painted a baby being lifted up by two arms, and the Singapore flag was also reflected in the baby.
When he first saw the image with his colleagues, the whole office was in tears because they knew that God was speaking and confirming that the next generation was precious to Him.
Turning to the audience, Wong affirmed them: “God has placed dreams, gifts and talents in every single one of you.
“Why would God call Singapore the Antioch of Asia if there was no one to fulfil that call? There are dreams that God has placed in you that will come true in spite of our failures as long as we allow Him to work.
“But are you willing to surrender yourself as a vessel for Him to fulfil those dreams?”
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