The team met for breakfast today at 8:00 a.m. It was awesome and one of the best meals that we have had since we left on July 20… WOW, that seems like so long ago. We are down to two full days and then our departure day on Wednesday, August 3. We will arrive at the PHX airport around 19:30 and then plan to arrive at TBT around 22:30 if all goes well with luggage.
Now back to today… I invited one of the “English speaking families” that TBT supports to speak for our group this morning. He preached a very convicting and challenging message from II Timothy 1. I am not to be ashamed of the Gospel or those who are being persecuted because they are standing for the Gospel. He gave several examples of that which takes place here in China. He had the privilege to see “Anna” saved in 2004. Immediately her family began to ridicule and persecute her for her new faith. She was a part-owner in a company and told her partner that they would no longer lie or do things wrong… she lost her company.
She persevered and for six years has suffered verbal abuse and isolation from her family. However, her mother in 2010 told her daughter that she wanted what she had and she has been gloriously saved. She now owns her own company and the Lord is blessing in spite of all that her unsaved friends might do or say about her.
Two men in this man’s church just lost their jobs in the last two weeks because they refused to work on Sunday. They are counting it as joy, not sacrifice. This family started this church three years ago and now has 60 people. In the fall they are going to split their church three ways. They have members who travel two hours to attend church and they live in Beijing. This is a monstrous city!
This family then took 20 minutes to answer great questions from our group. We learned that this family can buy a case of 24 Bibles. They take these Bibles out to the villages on the weekends as their outreach ministry. If you will remember, we are in the process of distributing the funds from our KJV 400th celebration. We are giving our missionaries who promise to buy Bibles $400 to do so. We gave this family $400 following the service. At $1.35 each, we will have a part in distributing God’s Word right here in China.
Following our service, we changed clothes and then boarded our bus to go visit the Aquarium and Zoo. We saw many different creatures in the aquarium and then we saw elephants, tigers, lions, zebras, giraffes, monkeys, several animals that we don’t have in the US, many different kinds of reptiles, and finished with the infamous Panda Bears! It was fun and several even purchased Panda Bear hats. They will be coming to you very soon!
We then traveled to Pizza Hut and ate together as a group… it was delicious, some of the best pizza we have ever had. After supper, we returned to our hotel for this group is TIRED. Off to bed they have gone and hopefully will be refreshed in the morning.
Several are feeling puny: Janet has a full-blown cold and cough, Jonathan is congested, Shelby had a migraine today, Lauren R has been renamed Lawrence for she has a deep, deep voice, Jenna is having some stomach issues, and Bethany has the makings of a cough and cold. Everyone else is doing fine for the moment but most are just flat worn out.
God is good though; we had a terrific day in which all 24 team members had a personal time with the Lord today in which they read and prayed. It was spiritually refreshing and the camaraderie is great among our team. God knew who to have on this team and there have been very, very few problems. All in all this has been a flawless trip.
We are headed to bed; so, in the morning we will get up and meet for breakfast at 7:00 a.m. to begin our day of rigorous activities. Tomorrow is a super long day! We love all of you and miss you but are still praising Him for that which He accomplished this last week in our live and the life of the ministry team!