American University of Health Sciences (AUHS) faculty and staff gathered in the 2nd Floor Conference room for their weekly Morning Dew meeting on March 22, 2017, at 9 am. This week’s Morning Dew meeting was lead by Dr. Mok Chong, the AUHS Dean of General Education.
Several applicants from AUHS’ School of Nursing program also attended the Morning Dew meeting before their 10 am interview.
“We have Morning Dew every Monday from 9-10 am. Usually, the (Co-founder of AUHS) Pastor Gregory Johnson leads this meeting but every once in awhile, he asks me to do it for him,” Dr. Chong explained to the applicants, “Today’s Morning Dew is about life, wisdom and decision making. As you are applying to our BSN program, you want to know that you are making a good decision. As a Christian university, we also want you to make Godly decisions.”
Together they read the following passages and discussed what each excerpt meant to them on a personal, professional and spiritual level.
1 Thessalonians 4:3 It is God’s will, that you should be holy and be sanctified in your living.
God has spoken to us and His will has been written in the Bible. His words are sacred and we must always use it as our moral compass.
“God has already spoken His words. We need to read (the Bible) to be reminded of how we have to strive to become like God. We have to be holy and to always be grateful for the blessings in our lives,” said Cynthia Chamber, and AUHS Financial Aid Administrator.
God wants us, His children, to live a pure and holy life.
“God asks us to be purified, to be made holy and to live life according to Godly teachings. We always need to be pure, honest, and always operate from goodness rather than negative energy,” said Aya Almukhtar, and AUHS Admissions Coordinator, “We are responsible for not only ourselves but for how other people feel as well. Don’t cause harm or among ourselves. In order for us to live with one another in peace and harmony, we should invest in others by doing good and help each other when we can. Only then can we be blessed.”
Being a pure and Godly person does not mean you will not make mistakes but we must strive to live by God’s will.
“Holiness does not mean you have to be perfect. Holiness is not unattainable,” said Dr. Chong, “Holiness means that you want to be as close to being good as God is. Do your best to live by His word.”
Your intentions also determine your goodness and faithfulness towards God.
“To be truly close to the Lord, one requires a level of sincerity that’s not pretentious and not a fake,” said AUHS President Dr. Caroll Ryan, “Our thoughts and our actions have to be aligned in everything we do today and in the future.”
Dr. Chong reminded the room that the blessing the university receives from God depends on their faith, words, and actions.
“If you want God to flow in your life, if you want God to flow this university, we have to align with God. There is no other way,” said Dr. Chong.
Knowing what God wants you to be is more precious than what you’d like to do
I urge you to live in order to please almighty God
Our God is more concerned with who we are than what we do
Jesus never asked what job we had but questioned out characters
Whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of Jesus Christ
Holiness is in line with the right relationship with God
Thus, it is important to make right and godly decisions
Humans are imperfect and will make mistakes in life. Sometimes humans make excuses and believe their bad decisions are necessary. Sometimes humans are unaware of how their actions hurt other people.
“As humans, we make bad decisions in our life. Sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally we do wrong but that’s why it’s important to ask God for guidance,” said Ivy C. Javaluyas, the AUHS Director of Student Affairs, “We always need the grace and guidance from God so whatever decisions we make is according to God’s will.”
Javaluyas encouraged the room to try to be the best version of themselves and to be as kind as possible.
“Prayers are always your best weapon,” Javaluyas said.
Amarri Sanders, an AUHS Student Success Coordinator, believed that no matter what you want, God does what is best for you.
“When you want to do something, when you want to be like something, and you feel like you’re pushing against the grain. Maybe in your teenage years, you rebelled, and you did those things you didn’t know was right,” said Sander, “When you get older, you learn from your mistakes and you and become the person you were always supposed to be. We do things that will steer us off God’s path but as long as we were meant to be on the right path, we will go back to Him.”
Almukhtar shared the story of her life to the room. She came from a wealthy family in Iraq. Her father was a Vice Minister, she had drivers and servants, and she had the best life. When war broke out, her way of life was stripped from her. Her home, money, and possessions were gone.
“I was angry at God. I said, ‘Why? Why did you turn me into an immigrant? Why did you make me wander the world, nobody knowing who we are?’” c “But then I came to America, I started studying at one of the best schools because any school is America is better than any school in Iraq anyways. The education, the things I learned, the people I met, everything that happened to me in America is much better from what I expected in Iraq.”
She thought the money and comfort that she had in Iraq was good for her but she says she is much happier today working for her own food, clothes, and rent.
“In America, everyone is equal. This is much better than no freedom and no human rights, in Iraq. It took war, it took pain and hardship to direct me to the path God wanted for me,” Almukhtar said, “If not for Him, I would probably be in Iraq right now kidnapped by Isis, struggling in an unhappy marriage, or God know what. Even when there is crisis or misfortune, it is all part of God’s plan. Be patient.”
Illusion of perfection makes us defer our journey
We become so careful and fearful to make decisions that are perfect
In the Bible, even Paul was not sure every step he took
Paul said, “Perhaps I will stay with you a while so you can help me in my journey”
I do not want to see you now and make only a passing visit
I hope to spend some time with you if the Lord permits
But I will stay on because a great door for effective work has opened to me
And there are many who oppose me
May our God guide us step-by-step and day-by-day
In what we do and how our faith goes
Walk with the wise and become wiser
Associate with the fools, you shall get into trouble
At the end, our God Gives us the wisdom to decide
“We get confused because we always want what we want. But to live in the will of God, it doesn’t mean comfort or money. To live in the will of God is finding the fullness of life,” said Dr. Chong, “Sometimes we have to go through trials and tribulations but the will of God does not mean everything is going to be smooth. There are times we will go through the storm but in the end we see what God had done for us.”
Hai Luong, an AUHS Admissions Coordinator, walked to the front of the room to share his thoughts. He said he was grateful to be in Morning Dew because in all of his year working, he had never served a place that started the week praising God. Morning Dew prepares him for the rest of the week. Luong then discussed how God wanted each of them to grow and build character.
“God is very interested in developing character because character is what lives with us forever. Whatever we do here on Earth, God wants us to work together,” Luong said.
Luong referred to Romans 8:28- All things work together for those who love God, for those called according to God’s purpose.
“God has a purpose, a plan for each one of us and he will allow good and bad things in our lives to make us a better person,” said Luong.
Luong recalled how there was a point in his life where had a big house and many cars but he lost everything. He lived on a hispanic family’s sofa for 3 months.
“For the first time, I got to know hispanic people. I discovered how they risked their life to come to America so it made me feel very grateful,” Luong said. “I remember telling my relatives at the time, that I lived with a hispanic family. You know how in every culture, if they hear something they’re not used to they become very afraid. The said, ‘Really? Those are gangster people, you live with them?’ I said, ‘No, these people are very nice. They welcomed me into their home like a family. I got to know them, I got to share their food, it changed my life. It changed my perspective in life and I did not look at people the same way as I used to.’ I love everybody sincerely, with the love of God. God uses all of that to make us better.”
Dr. Marilyn Uvero, the AUHS Vice President of Operations and Development, shared a list of questions and encouraged the room to reflect on them.
“How do we act as God wants us to? How concerned are you when you do not do what you want to do? How will you act and speak, so you are representative of Jesus Christ?,” Dr. Uvero said, “How are you going to share your thoughts and how are you going to form your character so that you are in the image of Jesus Christ? Just how important is it for you to be righteous and godly? Are you going to claim godly decisions or are you going to claim human decisions?”