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Dear Prayer Partners,
This year’s Christmas was on a Wednesday; with the following weekend and New Year’s Day, a lot of people chose to take a seven-day vacation or a longer stay in China. This year, many of our brothers and sisters in the factories returned to China for holiday. As the Christmas season is the most profitable time for retail businesses, most of the Chinese merchants remain in Durban. Our church in Durban, therefore, holds a special Christmas worship every year. This past Christmas, over 70 people attended the service. In addition to the regular program, we had special choir and piano performances as well as personal testimonies. After the service, everyone enjoyed a delicious love feast. Praise the Lord! This is our once-a-year get-together for all our brothers and sisters of the three meeting groups in Durban. We not only rejoiced in the celebration of the birth of Christ but also shared the Christmas message with our families and friends.
Last week we received a call from one of our brother’s family. They had not been able to reach him since he left home a week ago and asked us if we knew of his whereabouts. Due to other ministries, we did not have any contact with our brother since our last visit two months ago. We were so worried and could only pray for his safety. Thank God; he contacted his family the next day. He was at the international airport (about a three-hour drive from his city) but lost both his wallet and cell phone. Another brother of the church happened to be there catching a flight to China and spotted him. How wonderful! His family was greatly thankful to the church; in fact, they should be grateful to God! May the Lord help him reconcile with his family through open dialogues. Our Lord is good; He kept our brother safe! This incident also encourages us to put our trust in God in time of crisis! He answers prayers!
Before the end of the year, we received another call from Sister Cheng. She invited us to lunch. We were kind of surprised to see her husband when we got there. Due to Mr. Cheng’s busy schedule, we rarely had the chance to meet him. They told us that he had just retired and planned to move back to Taiwan. Therefore, that was a farewell lunch. We will miss her! She was baptized two years ago, and she has been growing in the Lord and changed to be a much happier person. Mr. Cheng was the South Africa Director of a world-famous company, and his time was fully occupied by his job. Their factory is in a small town about two-hour drive from Durban; and she used to feel like a canary in a cage. Because their children are all grown up and have their own families, she spent most of her days alone – no friends, no social life! Two years ago, one of our brothers got a job at that company and introduced us to her. We visited her, gave her Christian literatures, chatted with her on topics from life perspectives to Christianity. God worked in her heart, and she accepted Christ as her Savior. Her faith gives her strength and joy. Soon after, our brother left the company. In her times of need, God brought us into her life to lead her to Christ and help her grow. Now God is leading her back to Taiwan. She shared with us that knowing God was the greatest treasure she found in South Africa! In our ministry, we have to say a lot of goodbyes! Since many people plan to move on sooner or later, we need to take every opportunity as our last chance to tell them about Christ.
- Please pray for Sister Cheng’s adjustment in Taiwan. May the Lord help her find a suitable church so she can continue to grow in her faith.
- Please pray for our brother’s family relationship. May the Lord also grant us wisdom in guiding him to resolve the conflicts in his family.
- Please pray for Sister Chu’s speedy recovery after her fifth chemo treatment.
- Please pray for the spiritual growth of a new church member Sister Leung as well as the children in the Sunday School.
- Please continue to pray for our safety as we travel to different cities and towns.
In His service,
Ko-Ta & Christina