Living a Wholesome Life – from Missions to Fitness
by Sharon Poon, edited by Kylie Chia, translated by David Wang
I was called to Senegal for missions, a French-speaking nation in Africa, as I studied 2 years in a missionary training college. I obeyed since God assured me that He would provide for me where I was going.
And so from 1989-1997, I learned to live alone and be independent but to also work in tandem with those who were posted there, sharing the gospel to the locals. It trained me to be resilient because the environment was dry and parched; we travelled via horse and cart to get to the market, and I lived in a small house made of bricks with a zinc roof. Nonetheless I was contented with simple living.
WEC found a school for missionary kids and I had the opportunity to teach about the Chinese culture and language there. My main ministry was with the ladies of the church and in the community teaching literacy and Bible Study.
In 1997 when I came back to Singapore, I felt broken and bruised. I was given a chance to recover and heal, before I was called to another country. I took a year to study in Singapore Bible College and also trained as an English teacher this time. With the opportunity to outreach in Vietnam, I lived there from 2001 to 2007, teaching English, helping underprivileged children and conducting student exchange trips by bringing them to Singapore to learn our culture.
There is no greater joy than seeing God continue to give growth to that which was sown often in tears, loneliness, hard work and on our knees.
My father was getting on in years and so I had to return to be his caregiver. I sensed God had brought me back to also help my father along in his spiritual journey, and ultimately usher him into God’s glory. It was an arduous 4-year period. The day after he went home, I felt heartbroken but at the same time there was a sense of God’s pleasure, and it was healing for me.
I continued serving in the WEC Singapore home base the whole time, caring for the welfare of missionaries and training new ones for the mission field. I was also part of the missions committee in my Covenant Presbyterian Church, where we hosted English classes for seniors as a means of outreach to our neighbours. Up until it was time for my retirement in 2015.
Retirement felt strange because it meant I would no longer have a secure income from church or donors. I had some discussions with God about this. Eventually I was directed towards attaining an NCSF Personal Trainer certification so I could learn to stay fit and help other seniors in their own health journey. I also completed a SportSG fitness instructor course to become a part time instructor with them.
Thus began the next phase of my life. I now work three days a week in the ActiveSG gyms. For seniors, 150 mins of exercise weekly with two days of strength training (or working out in the gym) is essential because those over 60 will lose 30% of their muscle mass. The body is God’s temple so I believe I need to keep it strong; even if we don’t do it for ourselves, let’s do it for God.
WICAS (Women in Church and Society) is an LCS Sisters’ Fellowship arm. It aims to help women in the Lutheran church grow in faith, be active in service and be passionate in mission. It organised “Living a Wholesome Life” on 12 August 2023, presented by and with some exercises demonstrated by Sharon Poon.
Neck stretches while in an upright posture. 保持直立姿势时颈部伸展。
Arm and waist stretch, which can be done seated or standing. 手臂和腰部伸展，可以坐着或站着进行。
Hamstring stretch, seated or standing. 腿筋拉伸，坐着或站着。
Seated knee raises to work hip flexors, and calf raises where the toes remain on the floor to work the calves. 坐姿提膝以锻炼髋屈肌，小腿抬高则脚趾保持在地板上以锻炼小腿。
Lunges to work the thighs, holding a chair for support. 弓步锻炼大腿，握住椅子作为支撑。
Hip abductors to work the outer thigh, holding a chair for support. 髋部外展肌锻炼大腿外侧，握住椅子作为支撑。
Deadlifts using stretch bands, from a bent-forward position to upright position to work the glutes. 使用弹力带进行硬拉，从向前弯曲的位置到直立的位置，以锻炼臀肌。
Planks for up to 1 minute to engage the abdominal and lower back muscles. 平板支撑长达 1 分钟，以锻炼腹部和下背部肌肉。
Jogging a few rounds in the hall to work the cardio-respiratory system. 在大厅里慢跑几圈，锻炼心肺系统。
过健康的生活 – 从宣教到健身
我父亲年纪渐长，所以我必须回去照顾他。我感觉到 上帝带领我回来，也是为了帮助我父亲走上属灵的旅程，最终引领他进入 上帝的荣耀里。那是一个艰难的四年，当他回天家的时候，我感到心碎，但同时又有 上帝的喜悦，对我来说这是治愈性的。
于是，我人生的下一阶段开始了。我现在一周在ActiveSG健身房工作三天。对于老年人来说，每周需要进行150分钟的锻炼，其中包括两天的力量训练（或在健身房锻炼），因为超过60岁的人会流失30%的肌肉质量。身体是 上帝的殿，所以我相信我需要保持它的强壮；即使我们不是为自己做，也要为了 上帝而做。