Light the candles for the birth of a new year – nian gao is served!

Sounding like “high year” in Mandarin, these “new year” cakes are said to usher in greater fortune, growth and career progression to start the year on a high. Like so many other Chinese delicacies, the story of nian gao is derived from a legend about a king, the siege of a city, and bricks made of sticky rice flour. (At least that’s what makansutra claims.)

Doesn’t that remind you of the Gospel? A King who came to save us from the siege of sin, and in its place built for us an unshakeable faith that would be salvation for our souls. It is His faithfulness that ushers in the greatest fortune of all: Growth in character and intimacy with God.

This Chinese New Year, let’s ask for a faith that’s stickier than the stickiest nian gao.

Because God is faithful and true to His Word, we in turn should respond with faith, devoting ourselves to the cause of Christ and our call to follow Jesus. Such faith implies a sense of duty and commitment to walk the narrow path, even if it isn’t easy.

Stick to that path, like nian gao to your teeth, because it is worth it.

We need to build personal faith, which allows us to see beyond ourselves. Hebrews calls it the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things unseen. It isn’t hasty or rash. It’s not blind. It is earnest belief, pointed towards truth, even if the road isn’t clear.

This CNY, let’s ask for a faith that’s stickier than the stickiest nian gao. May we walk by faith and not by sight, sticking to the path set before us in the year ahead, whatever it may bring.

The LORD rewards everyone for their righteousness and faithfulness. (1 Samuel 26:23)