Jonah is my hero

edited February 2011 in Introductions
Hello all,

I'm from Malaysia and am not part of the Coptic Church but have found myself growing more interested in the Church of the East as the days go by.

I am a Chinese and a Protestant. I've been a Christian for many years, living my life in charistmatic churches (assemblies of God and non-denominational), growing in faith and acknowledging Jesus Christ as my Saviour.

In the last year, I have many times come across Jonah that it's made me take notice... it started at the beginning of the year when I read Anne Rice's fictional take on Jesus in her 'Christ is Lord' series. There she tells the story of Joseph who relays the story of Jonah. In April 2010, I was at a retreat where we were told to look at trees and think of what God might be trying to say. There, I saw shade and was reminded of Jonah and the vine so I went to read the book of Jonah. Since then, it was encounter after encounter, people telling me I was like Jonah (was one), another when I went for a conference and was meant to focus on Matthew 13 but when I strayed for a little bit, I was shocked to see the title for Matthew 12:38-45 'The sign of Jonah'... times at church when Jonah was mentioned (i was doubting that day that God spoke to me directly.. the first words of the passage that day was Hebrews 12:25 "Be careful that you do not refuse to listen to the One who is speaking" [NLT]... there were more encounters.

Anyway, then I was reading up on the Assyrian Church (very briefly), how Jonah is read on Yom Kippur, how the Church of the East may have been one of the first missionaries to China in 7th century AD... and it's just been so interesting!

I answered a thread about 'betraying God' in another section 'cos it spoke to me 'cos even though I've had all these encounters, I have no properly sat down to see what God wants to say to me... I have ignored prayer, I have just been reading up on all these things but not really asking God about why...

Anyway, I've gone on a bit long for an introduction. I hope to hear from you...thanks for having me!

*** it's totally cool that i learnt of Jonah's feast from Feb 14-16, 2011... I really would like to fast but I've never done it before and i've just been so distracted i'm not sure what the best way around this is... ***


  • Welcome to the site!  :)
  • the assyrian church of the east did many great things, and they were probably the first missionaries in china. however many of them followed the heresy of a guy called nestorius, who basically said that Jesus our Lord and Saviour was a man who became divine at some stage after his birth. so they didn't believe he was incarnate in the womb of the virgin saint mary as both divine and human.
    all the other churches (in the world) believed that Jesus was fully divine and fully human - this is the only way He could die for us and rise from the dead. they summarised the Christian beliefs in the nicene creed in the 4th century.

    so it's best to stick with one of the churches who stick to the original beliefs and the nicene creed, like the orthodox churches.

    as for fasting, the people who fast strictly eat and drink nothing till 3pm, then eat only vegan foods and drink (no meat, milk or eggs). we don't drink alcohol during fasts, and many people don't drink at all.
    if you are new to fasting, it's probably a good idea to give up meat for 3 days, but pray about it and ask God to guide you and to show you how to meet with someone who can help you on your spiritual journey.
  • Hi!!  :)
    100x welcome pigduck! I am happy to see your interesting in the church of the east, and you found the right site!
    Really happy to see every time more and more people becoming interesting and attracted to the C.O.C
    and may God open your and all our eyes, to find and to life a beautiful life with Jesus.

    God bless
  • HELLO & WELCOME pigduck,

    Fasting goes beyond just abstaining from food, i recommend you reading 'the spirituality of fasting' by H.H. Pope Shenouda III:

    or as a pdf: SPIRITUALITY OF FASTING - HH Pope Shenouda III.pdf

    As H.H says 'fasting is not a mere bodily virtue'. There are many virtues and feeling that accompany fasting (repentance, prayer & worship, self- abasement & penitence, silence & seclusion, fasting of the tongue, fasting of the thought, fasting of the heart, self- control, conquering the body, asceticism, charity and prostrations). Then ofcourse there is the element of hunger & period of abstinence and the false and rejected fasting.

    God Bless, please remember me in your prayers. 
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