Chiang Mai, Thailand IV

There are so many stories to tell about people I’ve met here at the Asian Mission Forum … the churches that are thriving in this part of the world … the opportunities for the gospel in Asia.

I heard a story last night about a Chinese man who was raised by a father devoted to communism. The father carried around copies of Marx and Engels like we would carry around a Bible. As a youth, the boy made a trip to a village outside of Beijing. There he saw people starving to death. He heard that some were resorting to cannibalism. Just prior to this visit, the government had assured the Chinese that the entire land was enjoying plenty and prosperity.

The boy realized that the party was lying to him. He decided never to believe anything the government told him. His faith in communism died that day. But what to put in the place of his faith in the communist system? Near his home was an old Catholic church with the words “For God so love the world” emblazoned on its façade. He’d seen this message a thousand times, but never paid it much mind. He decided that, if he couldn’t trust the communists, he might trust the God the communists slandered and denied.

Decades passed. The boy became a man, a husband, a father, a grandfather. As he raised his children, he told them, “Don’t trust the Communists … trust God!” He had no idea who “God” was or what he wanted or what he had done to save the world. But, determined to believe in something, he decided to put his trust in this unknown God and encouraged his children to do the same.

One of his daughters worked at a hospital and, one day, heard singing coming from a corridor. A church was meeting there, worshipping quietly with the permission a hospital administrator. She followed the sound of singing and found a group of Christians. She began to ask questions. Eagerly, she brought her brother to meet these people and ask questions for himself. He was baptized. She was baptized. They brought their father to the church. He was baptized. The entire family become Christians, finally having heard the story of God’s love in Jesus Christ.

It was an inspiring story that made me marvel about God’s working throughout the world to draw people to himself. Just one of the many stories I’ve heard during my sojourn to Chiang Mai, Thailand. It’s been good to be here.

[Click to view the previous post in this series]

[Click to view the next post in this series]

© 2012 by Tim Woodroof. Reproduction of this material requires permission from the author.