This letter comes to you with our warm wishes that the love and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ will fill your hearts this Christmas and throughout 2015.
"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." (John1:14, NIV)
We all need Jesus. We need his love, his grace, and his family. Just this morning at our morning small group we heard of a neighbour whose husband died recently. She is now struggling with feelings of guilt and loss, etc., and is very distraught. It is affecting the whole family. Will you pray for her?
Last week we visited a young couple who we were introduced to us by her parents back in May. Then their older son came to our summer camp in July. Now he and his younger brother come to our Saturday kids club. It was exciting to hear Mr. and Mrs. Tan tell us how God used her parents, the summer camp, Bible study with David, and a local church they started attending (before we started our Sunday services), to help them understand the gospel and believe in Jesus. They have cleared their house of all of their idol worshipping things and are preparing to be baptised in January. They told us how their relationship with each other and with their children has improved since they decided to follow Jesus. They are experiencing God's blessing and telling others about him.
Mrs. Tan's parents are also new believers who were introduced to us by mutual friends last year. They own a small restaurant that serves lunch and supper, so are not able to come to evening meetings. Recently they started coming to our house 3 mornings a week, 7-9am for Bible study and prayer. We so enjoy seeing their excitement as they discover the teachings of Jesus for the first time. Pray that they will want to be baptised soon. They still have a huge family idol table on their third floor.
A 'young' 70+ grandma has also started listening to Bible stories. Ruth visits her once a week. They are currently working through some of the stories in Genesis. For the longest time Grandma H. resisted us visiting, but now that she is hearing the Bible stories she loves them and has started reading a simple Bible translation with larger characters. Pray that she will believe and that God will heal the bad relationships within her family. We long to see this family find peace and love through Jesus.
Qiaotou God's Love Church (橋頭主愛教會) News
The church officially started on November 9th with our first Sunday worship service. Since that first service we have had steady attendance of 12 adults and 10 children each week - although not always the same people each week! We are encouraged by a good start and a solid core group of disciples committed to reaching out with God's love into our community.
Highlights for Prayer
- Praise God for a good start to our Sunday service. Pray for open homes and open hearts as we seek to visit the many people we are in contact with.
- Praise God that we continue to have an open door to tell Bible stories in 4 classes at one local school. We have also recently been invited to tell stories in a school in Gangshan, about 15 minutes away. It is a large school with 9 classes for each grade level. They are inviting us to tell stories in all of the grade 2 and 3 classes (18 classes total). We have met with the pastors of several churches in that community to tell them about this opportunity. Pray that God will raise up Christians in Gangshan to join us in this storytelling opportunity. We will plan a training session for all prospective new helpers in January and plan to start storytelling in the school after Chinese New Year.
- Ask God to work in people's hearts through our Christmas outreach events. We plan to have a potluck Christmas supper and party Saturday, Dec. 20th for children and parents. Christmas Eve will be a candlelight evening service of readings and carols. Then on Saturday, Dec. 27th, we plan to have another potluck Christmas supper and party for our neighbours, many of whom have not been in our house and are probably curious about our house and our starting a church here.
Thank you for your partnership with us to bring God's love into the lives of people in Taiwan. We thank God for your prayers and for the financial gifts of many given to OMF, which enable us to live and work here. Do let us know how we can pray for you too.
With love from Taiwan,
David and Ruth