As I have watched in horror all the gruesome details of the earthquake that has rocked central China, I am sobered by the realization that just two short months ago, I was within 10 minutes of this epicenter, building relationship with Chinese students and working alongside a local ministry to communicate about our faith in Christ.
China is an amazing country. More people than I can even begin to describe. Steeped in rich history & culture. The underground church has exploded the last several years and an awakening and revival has been taking place in this country that I could only dream about.
During the month of March (has it really taken me this long to update the blog?!!), I visited Chengdu with 4 others from the Atlanta area on a 10 day, short-term vision trip with Buckhead Church. Although lightening fast, our time was filled with great memories, new friendships and a deeper understanding of each of our roles in sharing the life of Christ with the millions of people worldwide who have not yet experienced this amazing life change.
John, Charles, Tashi, Emily & I had a blast. We traveled 12 hours around the globe where we linked arms with a small team of “stinters” who are investing a year or more of their life into the ministry in China.
We made many new friends and were able to have several wonderful conversations pointing toward faith during our week in Chengdu. We passed the baton of our relationships over to the stinters to follow up with these students and to continue the dialogue. Although brief, we have prayed our impact was influential in the lives of the students we were honored to meet.
Our last couple of days we spent in Beijing exploring the home of the 2008 Olympics. We hiked along the Great Wall, took in the majesty of the Forbidden City and tried to image how an athlete was going to be able to breathe easily in this city covered in smog!
We left only slightly more than a week after we arrived. We were tired but impacted deeply. We took a part of China home with us, and especially now as we see the people in the area we visited hurting, dying and crying out for help, our hearts are broken and sad. We are praying with our stinter friends still in Chengdu that through this tragedy, many will find faith in Christ.