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Dear Prayer Partners,
Yesterday I received a message from Brother Yang whom I knew for many years. We have not been in contact for a few years. He told me that he is now in his homeland and is using this new account to connect with me again. Due to different reasons, many Chinese had chosen to return home. The pandemic has been a huge blow to the South African economy, the country’s dire condition is being compounded by unstable supply of electricity, water shortage and high inflation. With decreasing customer base and worsening crime rates, businesses are impossible to make any profit these past few years. It used to be hard for new immigrants to find businesses to acquire. Now the table has turned, and it is hard to find buyers for their businesses. Brother Yang used to work for another brother in Christ, and he would come to church whenever he had the day off. He mentioned that he missed everyone in church and lamented, “I did not think much about our time together when I attended church, but now I remember all the great times we had and cherish every single one of them. Even if I visit South Africa again, I would not be able to find everyone!” I reminded him that our Lord has greater plans for us, and one day we will meet again in heaven!
Ministering among Chinese diasporas let us experience this emotional roller coaster. It would give us great joy to meet them and witness their encounters with God. It could be a witnessing opportunity or just a passing when they needed help and encouragement. To Brother Yang, our church was a home away from home where he was showered with God’s love through fellow Christians. Nevertheless, we felt sad when we had to part our ways. Since South Africa is not our permanent home, we can only say our goodbyes and embrace our wonderful memories in our hearts. We fully entrust our future with our Lord because He reigns and holds the keys to tomorrow and eternity.
To foster growth in Christians requires a lot of hard work, patience and love, but we will see our work in completion in due time. Around New Year’s time, we received greetings from a sister who had left the church a number of years ago. She was pulled away by another religion and had been struggling back and forth. Yet we still visited her from time to time, encouraged her with God’s Word and stood by her in her time of need. In her message, she told us, “I have returned to God’s family! Even though I had wandered away, God’s love was always there! Thank you for never doubting my faith, believing in me and supporting me.” We rejoice that our persistence in love was not in vain. Let us continue to have compassion for the weak, to encourage and support them.
Please pray for the following:
- May the Lord lead our brothers and sisters who had returned to China to find new church homes where they can continue their spiritual growth.
- May the Lord help the government in resolving its electricity crisis. It is now escalated to Level 6 Load Shedding with 10 hours of blackouts per day. It seriously affected daily living and business operations.
- May the Lord also help the government find effective ways to curb inflation and create more employment opportunities.
- May the Lord continue to bless the various on-line meetings so they will not be interrupted by electricity outages.
In His service,
Ko-Ta & Christina