Something inside Kenning Keung pulled him towards church.
I was born into a family without any Christian beliefs. Nanna was a devout Taoist and Mum and Dad were agnostic, although Mum went to a Christian school.
I was taught religious education at a private Christian school and, although I never took it seriously, the seeds of Christianity were planted in me.
As a teenager I wanted to blend in with the cool kids. I was introduced to smoking, drinking and partying and, at 17, marijuana. The feeling of getting high was amazing—I had escaped the world and it just felt awesome.
I was introduced to ecstasy at university, and became addicted. Over time I took more drugs such as speed, cocaine and GHB. Each time, I would take drugs because I just wanted to feel high and have a good time.
One day when my friends and I were smoking, Mum came home early from work. After throwing my friends out of the house, in tears she picked up all the equipment and leftover marijuana and threw it in the bin.
I was so mad that I punched holes in the walls. I didn’t have a single thought for those who cared for me. I became depressed whenever I wasn’t high, dropped my studies at university and didn’t care about my future. I only wanted to live in the ‘present’ and be high and happy through drugs, partying and drinking.
Mum was heartbroken, and she, too, suffered from depression and anxiety. One day, she saw an ad for the Salvation Army Box Hill Chinese Corps and decided to go to church in the hope of finding peace and comfort for herself (and maybe find help for me).
She told me she chose to go to a Christian church because she remembered her Christian teaching from school, and wanted to seek out God for help. She started attending weekly and asked if I would like to join her.
At first I said ‘no’ because I just wasn’t interested. My view of Christians was the extreme televangelists and the ‘goody-two-shoes’ people who followed the rules all time. But Mum asked me week after week until, fed up with her nagging, I obliged. I was welcomed so warmly. After the service, we had a meal together and everyone in the church wanted to chat with me. From then onwards I went to church every Sunday.
Something inside me pulled me towards church, and led me away from the party life. However, I was still smoking marijuana and cigarettes, but God miraculously stepped in.
I wanted to buy marijuana one day, but when I tried to contact my regular dealer, the phone had been disconnected. So I had to go without it! I had no choice. Soon after I met Naty (now my wife) who also went to Box Hill Chinese Corps. She knew I smoked but she was extremely patient and loving towards me. She didn’t want to force me, but wanted quitting to be my own decision. I wanted to give up for her. So I did. God gave me Naty to stand by me, encourage me and strengthen me in my faith. He has taught me to love someone other than myself.
I am now free from all the addictions. I am able to use my story to testify of the power and grace of God to others who may be going through what I’ve gone through.
Now I am a nurse. Because of my self-centredness I never would have considered myself to be someone who would offer a helping hand to others. However, the love of God is so much within me that I can’t help but share that love with others, especially those who are in need.
I believe my faith journey and my life has been a miracle of God. God brings into the light those who once lived in darkness like me, so that his power, glory, grace and mercy may be made known.