There Are No Words
What happens when a pastor gets a vision for the hundreds of Chinese living and working in his community, and finds it unacceptable that they have no knowledge of Jesus?
It is a story of God igniting a passion in the heart of a Zambian pastor to reach out to the Chinese on the doorstep of his church. Meanwhile, a pastor and his congregation in Canada are assisting in the planting of a church in China. And then, God sovereignly allows a PAOC Global Worker to bring the two pastors together to speak at a series of conferences in Zambia. With this, the God story begins.
Last September, while eating some pizza in Livingstone, David Chibale (from Zambia), Bill Pipke (from Canada) and myself, began to talk about the possibility of planting a Chinese Church in the Copperbelt District of Zambia. Nine months later, Bill returned to Zambian soil with a Chinese pastor, his wife, and a Chinese church planter.
During the first three days of their visit, Bill and I preached at a PAOGZ 'Vision and Relationship Conference'. As the God story unfolded, the council of bishops and pastors present began to embrace the vision of a Chinese church plant in Zambia. At the end of the conference, the Zambian leaders gathered around the team from China, embraced them in relationship, prayed over them, and affirmed their support to reach the Chinese living in this nation. There are no words!
Following the conference, the team spent three days in the Copperbelt, meeting fellow Chinese in the compounds where they live and ate at one of their restaurants. They talked with them, prayed with them, and exchanged emails and phone numbers. On day two of the visit to a compound, the pastor's wife led the wife of a key executive member of the compound to Jesus. The first convert in a church that is yet to be established! There are no words!
One thing that none of us anticipated was the presence of Chinese Christians who live in the Copperbelt. On the last night of the team visit, at a farewell dinner, at the local Chinese restaurant, the chef discovered that we were Christians and came to our table. Within minutes, he broke out in a Chinese worship song with his newfound Christian friends from China, and expressed his longing to find a place to worship with fellow believers. There are no words!
So what is the next step? The church in China has a Bible College where they are training young men and women to become church planters all across China. It is quite possible that some of those church planters will be on Zambian soil in early 2014.
This God story is a reminder that the face of missions is rapidly changing. All of us involved have one desire, that we would not get in the way of what God is doing but simply come alongside the story He is writing. There are no words!
Don & Marie-José Mann
Global Workers with the PAOC
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