Dear mission partners, I recently read a devotional that talked about Revelation 3:20.
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come into him and eat with him, and he with me.“
The author explained that here Jesus does not talk about unbelievers who are to accept Christ, as one might think without reading the context. This verse refers to Christians who have failed to trust God for prosperity, health and protection. We are to repent and realize that Jesus is at the door and wants to have deep fellowship with us so that he can fill our needs. We must repent again and again and open the door that we ourselves closed when we surrendered to the temptation. We pray that the door will open: This is our prayer for the brother who was baptized in May. He is struggling with pride, and his previous worldview is being greatly challenged by his Bible reading. Oftentimes he tries to deal with his doubts and struggles alone. We hope that he will open the door to listen to the voice of Jesus and less and less insist on his own views and values.
As Christians, we often need to open the door of repentance because we have treated others without love and threatened the unity of believers. At the beginning of August, a camp was held for the volunteers of Chinese churches from all over Germany. Five of our staff members from Marburg participated. The motto of the camp was “Unity in the church”, which is a topic that is on the mind of people from our church as well. We are thankful that our staff team had time to think deeply about how it is possible to treat each other lovingly despite different opinions to build God’s kingdom together.
During the camp, two of our staff responded to the preacher’s call to come forward to be prayed for if you feel called to full-time ministry. We are grateful that young Chinese people come to faith and want to serve God here in Germany. Some of our staff have come to faith only 2-3 years ago and have become actively engaged members, leading the Bible study group and worship time, and planning evangelism projects. We recognize that they face many challenges. At the same time, we see how God’s love is reshaping their hearts and they remain committed to their faith. Pray that we will have wisdom in leading the staff team so that they will grow further in faith and ministry skills, and that they experience Jesus in their life and ministry. Unfortunately, it turned out after the camp that many participants had been infected with Corona. Almost all our participants from Marburg had to isolate themselves the following week and felt severe symptoms. Some were very concerned about suffering severe illness and long after-effects. Over the phone, we supported each other during this time through listening, prayer, and encouragement.
The one who had remained healthy showed us his love and willingness to serve by buying groceries for us and distributing medicine. Through this loving fellowship, the anxiety soon became smaller and smaller. Jesus is knocking on the hearts of us Christians to repent and return to loving fellowship with Him and others. And he also knocks on the hearts of people who do not yet know him. After all, Jesus came „to seek and to save the lost “(Luke 19:10). A few weeks ago, three young women unexpectedly came to our Friday night Bible study. Two of them recently heard about Jesus through conversations with the Marburg deaconesses, in whose dormitory they live. Now they both want to learn more about God and the Bible. Our community welcomes them with love and interest. Pray that they will have perseverance in their search for answers and that their faith will grow and be strengthened.
We have started to plan for the welcome project in October for newly arriving students.
- Pray for good preparations, ideas and that we will have unity and love in planning together.
- Pray that God will lead new students into our community. We are thankful that God led a short outreach team from the Chinese church in Basel to help us with the welcome barbecue on October 8.
- Pray that we will have good cooperation, that the team will set a good example and that they will be encouraged by the outreach. The coming months bring many preaching services, mission presentations, a choir project and other activities for us.
- Pray that God will use our words and initiatives according to His will to teach, exhort, strengthen faith and spread the Good News.
Thank You for your partnership, God Bless You, Xiaodan & Philipp