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Monday, April 9, 2018

Letter from Friends in China

Dear Dennis, (Letter from Friends in China)

Hi! Our warmest greetings to you, we’re asking the Lord to send many, many blessings from above to you! We hope you had a very inspiring and meaningful Easter time.

We are so very thankful for the special friendship that God has given us with you, and we pray daily for you, so please send us any prayer requests that you would like us to pray for.

Our visas have been approved! God is so good! One miracle that happened is that the tuition fee for my Chinese school was the same than last year, even though the manager told me that the prices would rise, praise the Lord! We’d appreciate your prayers that our passports will be returned to us before April 9, as we have a short work trip on April 10, thank you so much!

As we mentioned in our news last month, we had a one-week trip in the end of January to have some rest after our busy Christmas time, in a beautiful mountain area in our province, but it ended up being also an exciting time of witnessing as well. On the way going, the young university student sitting next to Brad on the plane turned out to be so interested about the Lord, he had many questions about the Bible. When Brad offered to pray with him to receive the Lord, he was so eager to do so! What a good way to start our trip! Our destination was a small, quiet Naxi minority village called Baisha, literally translated as White Sands. This village is located close to one of the most popular touristic cities in China, called Lijiang, which is an ancient city with wooden houses and canals, and very charming, but it’s very crowded with tourists, so that’s why we chose this quiet village.

During the daytime we rested, and also took long bike rides to enjoy the beautiful mountains, we brought picnic lunches and listened to worship songs and Bible teachings as we stopped by the roadside to eat our lunch! We met different Chinese young people travelling by bike like us, and gave out many Gospel tracts that way and also to people from the local area that we met and talked to during the day, in all we gave out about 45 tracts during our trip.

During the evenings, when we went out to have dinner, we had many interesting witnessing experiences. The people we met were usually in their mid-30s and came from other provinces in search of an alternative life style, after being burned out by the competitive, materialistic society, and were trying out life in a quiet village surrounded by beautiful nature, eating natural foods, etc. Many of them previously had had good jobs and had achieved some success, but became disappointed and dissatisfied with their lives. So they came to Baisha to open small shops, little hotels, or restaurants etc. in this small village. We identified with them very much, as we felt very much like them before meeting Jesus.

The first night, as we were walking around the narrow cobblestone streets, we came cross this cute coffee shop where the young owner invited us to join her birthday party, so friendly! The 4 of them were having a yak meat and vegetable BBQ, all organic food! It was an interesting crowd and again we can see the brokenness of Chinese families. One girl we witnessed to in depth, grew up without her mother, who had left her when she was young as she wanted to be free to party, etc. Another young man had had a successful job in Microsoft but then came and opened a youth hostel in the village. The coffee shop owner had been a journalist, and her boyfriend had worked before in the pharmacy industry.

The second night after dinner, we went to try to find the youth hostel owner, he wasn’t there, but we took the opportunity to witness in depth to his hotel partner. We also witnessed deeply to a Chinese traveler in his mid 30’s, who had been travelling continuously for 10 years! Also we talked about the Lord to a young student who was in her last year of medical school who was there for a holiday. None of them were quite ready to receive the Lord, but we left them with tracts and much food for thought!

On the third night, when we went back to witness to the first coffee shop owner, who was busy, but we met E. and her husband there, and they invited us to the opening party of a new guest house. There we got to know more dear E., She and her young American husband had opened a small restaurant. Brad witnessed to her husband while I talked with E. She was so hungry for God and had many questions about other religions and also about the Bible, she had read some of it before but couldn’t understand it. We were able to answer many of her questions and though we were in the middle of this party, she eagerly opened her heart to Jesus and prayed a salvation prayer with her whole heart. For a long time, she just closed her eyes and experienced His love in a deep way, it was so beautiful to see her enter the Kingdom of Heaven!

The people we met in this village were an educated, intellectual type of people, many of them spoke good English, and were a bit more challenging to reach because although we could see they were empty inside, they were not quite ready yet to give their lives to Jesus, as they were trying to live their supposed “dream lives” in this quiet village. But we are sure the “seeds” of God’s Word that were planted in them will come back one day, and we would love to go back and witness more to them, to help them find the real source of life purpose, by meeting the One Who created us all!

As we were returning from this trip, we found out that one of our close longtime Chinese friends, J., who had immigrated to another country 5 years ago, was visiting his family in the north of the country.

Since he couldn’t come to our city, because of a problem with his foot, we decided to quickly travel to the north to visit him and his family! Even though we have stayed in close contact with him during this time, still it was a joy to see him after 5 years! We had a wonderful time of sharing the Bible with him and his wife and daughter during the 4 days we were with them.

J. has a very interesting personal testimony of how he came to Jesus! He had done something unethical at his company and was “hiding” from the police. He had gotten a Bible, and had read some of it, and realizing his error he cried out to God, saying, “God if you are real, please help me!”. When finally the company owner and the police found him, the company owner, Y., who happened to be a friend of ours, saw the Bible, and decided to forgive him and not to press charges. Y. brought J. over to our home, where he received the Lord. J. faithfully studied the Bible with us for about 3 years while we lived in that city. He had a tremendous transformation after he started studying the Bible with us, and was always on fire to witness to others, his family and clients. He is now in his 2nd year of a Seminary School, and is considering becoming a pastor, God bless him!

After returning from this trip, another long-time friend came over to our city and stayed 2 weeks with us. She brought along her niece, who also received the Lord with us and almost every day, we were able to study the Bible together, what a blessing! We spent the Chinese New Year together! After the Chinese New Year break, we restarted our Bible studies and outreach.

Last week, we met W., a young man in his 30’s, with a failed marriage and business, he was very broken and had many questions about the Bible and life. After spending 3 hours getting to know him, he was also willing to give his heart to Jesus, so we have started another weekly Bible study with him.

We had 3 Easter events last week, which is such an excellent opportunity for witnessing to new friends. We prepared a program with excerpts from the Gospel of John movie with the Easter story, plus an interesting short documentary in Chinese about the Shroud of Turin, which some of them had heard about, and this little documentary about it helped to strengthen their faith. Some of our friends brought their friends, and 3 of them prayed with us to receive the Lord, after they saw how much He loves them and has done for them at Easter, praise the Lord!

We do appreciate so much your friendship, support and prayers for our work here. Lately we have been hearing news of things tightening up, and more restrictions being put on religion, so we’d be thankful for your prayers for protection and continued open doors here. At the same time, we feel that people are so ripe for the Gospel and even though economically China is becoming more prosperous, the need of the Gospel is so evident at all levels of this society, with so much brokenness, and social and family problems, and we know that only Christ has the answer for all their needs!

Thank you for helping us to reach the harvest!Image result for china

Much love, thanks, appreciation and prayers,  Your Missionaries in China

Dennis Edwards: Are you interested in supporting them in their mission to the Chinese people. Let me know.

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