She was beyond his help. Despite his years as a plastic surgeon, Dr. Charles Lee could do nothing. She was just a toddler, two years old, fighting for her life. She had sustained severe burns from scalding hot water, developed septicemia, and lay in the Malaysian hospital bed dying.
“They told me, ‘You need to see this child because we are losing her.’
“I said, ‘I am not sure what I can do, but fly her over.’ At the time, she was about 40 minutes away by air.
“I saw her but could do nothing because she was severely ill. Her parents said, ‘We will do anything. We will pay for anything and anybody who will come in here and try to treat this child.’”
Charles told them he only knew of one person who could help.
“One physician – the Greatest Physician of all. They were from a pagan family and were a bit taken aback. I said, ‘His name is Jesus – Jesus of Nazareth.’”
He asked for the parents’ permission to pray for the toddler.
They granted it, and for the next 10 days, he prayed. And prayed. And prayed.
And a miracle happened.
“At the end of 10 days, she had brand new pink baby skin. The Lord healed her. And the parents and the family left the hospital praising God,” Charles says.
For this Haggai leader, that was his defining moment. The turning point in his life.
“I put my knife down and said to God, ‘I want to meet you. I want to know you. I want to follow you.’ Knowing the man Jesus became the singular passion and calling for me.”
Since then, Charles, a consultant plastic, cosmetic, and reconstructive surgeon practicing out of KPJ Sabah Specialist Hospital in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, has passionately pursued Christ.
His Haggai Leader Experience in 1997 helped catapult his journey and ultimately led to his founding the Asia-Pacific Consultation On Discipleship. APCOD, as it’s known, provides a strategic platform to the Asia Pacific nations to address the urgency for authentic discipleship to Jesus, incorporating both Hebraic and Christian perspectives for a Biblically based, Christ-centered life in the real world.
“I will never forget Dr. Haggai’s words during the session when he said, ‘Attempt something so great for God that it is doomed to failure unless God be in it.’ I remember going up to my room, where I wrote down the vision of APCOD,” he says.
“When I look back, I always say – invitations can change your life. After responding to the invitation from Haggai, my life has never been the same.”
Obedient to the calling, Charles experienced his vision become reality in July of 2001, when more than 650 Christian leaders from 28 nations gathered in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, for the first Asia Pacific Consultation on Discipleship to “bring the Light of the Word of Life into the 21st century.”
Since then, he has held four more gatherings in Sri Lanka, New Zealand, India, and Malaysia – many times at his own personal expense.
“The first APCOD – I had to sell my house. It was during a time of Asian financial crises, and everything was done. At the time, my then 80-year old mother supported me, sending me a check every month. That was humiliation to the core.
“Today, my family and I live in a small house because you tend to give up everything when you realize that it is all about Him.”
Healing from the inside out.
Charles’ heart for the lost permeates everything he does. Even before his patients walk in the door, he wants to know what they believe in.
“Haggai enabled me to crystallize the way I share the Gospel. Before I see any patient, my nurse hands me a card with their faith written on it.”
One of his patients was a Hindu woman who recently lost her husband.
“In the course of treatment, I looked at her and said, ‘Are you okay?’
“She said, ‘Doctor, there is one word that is missing in my life. Peace.’
“So I shared the Gospel the way Haggai trained me to do. I said, ‘What is your goal in life?’
“She said, ‘I just want to have peace. That is my goal.’
“I said, ‘You need to meet the Prince of Peace.’
“And we kept talking, and I shared about APCOD and what God had done in my life. And today, she is a leader of Christians in our own circle of friends. She is staunch in the faith. Everything is about God today.”
Whether through his surgical practice, his blog called Awaken the Dawn, or just everyday life, Charles seeks to follow Christ with every fiber of his being.
He says, “I never want to stop talking about the greatness and goodness of our Lord and God, Jesus of Nazareth.
“My prayer is that the Lord would have favor upon this nation. Because where the favor of the Lord rests, there the glory of the Lord dwells.”
© The Haggai Institute
The Haggai Institute advances the skills of qualified Christian leaders to more effectively evangelize their own people, and train others to do the same. We equip strategically-positioned leaders from all over the world to share God’s hope, His love, His truth, and His light. Haggai leaders face no barrier of language, because they’ve spoken it all their lives. They face no barrier of culture; they’ve lived it all their lives. And unlike most Western missionaries and evangelists, they won’t leave.
The influence of Haggai leaders is immense. That’s because each commits to pass on the Experience by equipping at least 100 others. Our data shows the average rate is 159 in two years. Every leader in every country becomes a catalyst. Over 100,000 men and women have completed the Haggai Leader experience. They have established more than 500 local chapters in 110 nations, passing on Haggai skills and inspiration – in their own languages and at their own expense.
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