“What is the vision of The Encounter?”
This was the question God asked me sometime last October.
“God, surely You know — it is for every tribe and tongue.”
Every time it reached a certain point in my answer, God would stop me.
It was then the words “tribe and tongue” became apparent.
God then downloaded a simple plan to take one of the songs that we released in March 2021 and have it translated into the three main languages of Singapore.
The song that started it all
Written around June 2019, “Praise You In The Storm” was my anthem when I was facing a storm during a particular season of my life.
At that time, my wife Elina (who had just found out that she was pregnant) and I had gotten into a serious car accident.
Our car was a complete wreck. While we were both shocked, we felt okay physically.
Thankfully, Elina didn’t experience any bleeding too.
Amid my anxiety for the unborn foetus and how Elina was doing, I could sense God asking me: “Clovis, what will you do now?”
My immediate response was: “We will worship You, Lord.”
Although our gynaecologist had no available slots in the next couple of days, we felt the peace to visit her a week later as suggested.
I mean, we could have panicked and said we wanted to see any available gynaecologist or even checked Elina into an A&E ward.
But at that point in time, I felt God challenging us to worship Him in our storm. And so that’s what we did.
After settling the administrative matters for the car, we went home and spent the next few hours worshipping God.
As a result, “Praise You In The Storm” was written from that place of surrender and worship.
When we finally got to visit the gynaecologist, a check revealed that the egg sac was intact.
A month later, the gynaecologist also miraculously informed us that we were expecting twins!
This was truly God’s blessing to us, as we do not have a history of twins in our families.
Now active and 2.5 years old, our two girls are a reminder for us to honour God and praise Him in any storm.
He will remember us. God never fails.
When The Encounter released the English version of the song in March 2021, we received so many testimonies about how this song had spoken to, blessed and encouraged listeners who were facing their own storms.
For instance, a single mum who was going through a tough time with her family told me that she felt God’s love through it. As she played the song on repeat, she found herself crying uncontrollably.
However, when I felt God say to take this song to non-English speaking communities last October, I still wondered how I was going to do this.
A new mission
It was definitely no easy task to find proper translators and singers.
In faith, I decided to ask on Instagram if there was anyone who could translate English into Bahasa Melayu, Mandarin and Tamil.
Within a couple of hours, a friend from church, Chara, replied and said that she could help with the Bahasa Melayu translation.
After I shared what it was for and the story behind the song, she then texted me this message out of the blue.
“Every tribe and tongue!”
That felt somewhat like a prophetic moment as those were the exact words that God had been prompting me the night before.
A song can, on its own, unify and stir up a great multitude of people.
That was the confirmation and the encouragement that I needed to kickstart the Tribe and Tongue Project (TTP).
Chara also shared that as she reflected on how God was bringing everyone and everything in alignment for this project, the impression she got was the weaving together of a beautiful tapestry of our lives as a form of worship, as well as how we should respond to Him, both individually and collectively as the Body of Christ.
After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.
They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice:
“Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” (Revelation 7:9-10)
The heart behind TTP is the physical embodiment of these verses in Revelation, and how it can look like on earth as it is in heaven.
A song can, on its own, unify and stir up a great multitude of people.
Imagine how much of an impact that same song, translated into different languages, could make within different communities and among the nations?
Sparking worship in our land, among the nations
TTP is just one of the many initiatives that supports our vision at The Encounter.
At the core, we want to see every tribe and tongue encounter God through worship and adoration.
To this end, have two areas of focus.
The worship experience, where we want to create worship spaces, be it physical or digital, for people to encounter God.
This can be done through worship and prayer nights as well as conferences organised by us or in collaboration with others.
People can also engage us to lead worship at church services, camps or other events if they believe in our vision as well.
In 2022, we are doing a number of things.
- Restarting TE Nights. This is open to everyone to just come with no agenda except to soak in the presence of God. Our first TE Night was on June 9 and our next one will be on December 8.
- Collaborating with Interseed to organise a National Day Prayer and Worship event on August 8 to set aside time for all to come and pray for Singapore.
- Having our very first TE Conference in early November. There will be an amazing time of worship, the release of a fresh word and an opportunity for people to respond to God.
For music evangelism, we are very intentional about reaching the unreached through music and worship, both local and abroad.
This year, we started a prophetic song series and we intend to release one song every quarter. This will be inspired by what we feel is the message from God for His people in that season.
For example, we released “Never Late” in March.
Our plan is to release an EP every year with fresh songs to impact a generation.
Not forgetting the nations, we are also recording worship sets for churches in Vietnam and Cambodia as part of our digital mission outreach.
One of our near-term goals is to have a network of organisations in every Southeast Asian country to physically have a space where people can come together to worship.
Heart To Worship Cambodia is the first in our network. We are also currently in talks with friends from Myanmar.
May we continue to build our worship altars and let our worship arise.
For this year, we are hoping that TTP will reach different communities and nations.
We are very excited to share that “Praise You In The Storm” now has a multi-language music video (Facebook and Instagram), three translated tracks (Mandarin, Tamil and Bahasa Melayu) and the original English version, which are available on all major music streaming platforms.
We hope this project that we are so passionate about would bless your hearts and your communities.
However the storms may look like in our lives through our different seasons, may we continue to build our worship altars and let our worship arise.
God is still on His throne, and He is worthy to be praised both in the good times and the bad.