Saturday, January 22, 2011

SYME: Testimonies from Taiwan

I was on the phone with Beth Steiner (Missionary wife helping run/start SYME Taiwan) this past week. She had many stories to tell me about the great things God has been doing in Taiwan. Over the past few years they have seen lots of students decide to follow Christ. I am very excited to be apart of what God is doing there. Here is one story from the past year sent to me by email from the Steiners.

STUDENT STORIES   (Summer & Fall 2010)
This last summer as one of our teachers shared the gospel, one of our students, Candy was moved to tears as she began to comprehend what the gospel was and what God had done for her to bring her into His kingdom. She had been to church often in High school, and was happy to call her-self a Christian, but this was first time that she understood it in a personal way. From that point on she began soaking up how to share the gospel and evangelism techniques. The first weekend of the Fall Term, Candy and another student began explaining the gospel to a new student, Leah. A few hours later they helped lead Leah in a prayer for salvation. Candy and Leah joined other students taking basic discipleship classes and they were both baptized a few weeks later.

Meanwhile we still had a few students in the Fall term that were not Christians. One student named Grace came from a very strong Buddhist background and had been a very devoted worshiper at the temples. She came to SYME because a Christian lady had encouraged her to get her foundation right in life while she was young. She told Grace that SYME could help her do that. So Grace came to SYME searching for spiritual truth. She actively participated in classes and spent extra time asking teachers many questions about life, but during her second month at SYME she experiences quite a bit of spiritual warfare specifically telling her to give up her interest in Christianity and to return to Buddhism and temple worship. During the last two weeks at SYME she secretly gave up her search, out of frustration from the spiritual attacks she was experiencing, but she maintained a polite attitude toward the staff. The teachers were not fully aware of all that was happening, but they kept praying for her and the Holy Spirit kept working.

During the Friend Day / Graduation program Grace was one of the MC’s. For part of the program she interviewed audience members on what their goals and dreams were. She even asked her brother who was in the audience what his dreams and goals were. As she did this, she realized that her thinking and values had changed and that the values and goals that her family lived for were not her values anymore.

After the Friend day program she told a teacher that she was ready to become a Christian. The startled teacher asked her if she meant that she wanted to become a Christian that same day and Grace told her, “Yes, after we finish our lunch!” A few weeks later we were able to see Grace at a chapel we were a part of in Taipei. We were so blessed to hear her give an impromptu testimony of how she became a Christian and what the Lord was doing in her life.  As we talked afterward she shared about the pain and frustration of being under the influence of evil spirits and the hope that she now has in Jesus that she can be free and find the truth in Christ. None of these ladies came from Christian homes.  Candy’s mother has no idea why God is important to her.  Leah’s family didn’t say much at first but they did become upset with her when they realized she was going to be baptized.  Grace’s family will actively oppose her going to church and she will face open persecution for refusing to go to the temple.

PRAYER: Please pray for Candy as she seeks God’s will for her future, a church to join and a place to grow in ministry and service. Pray for Leah to find a church, and for Grace to get connected not only with a church but with good Christian brothers and sisters as she seeks to transform her mind to be more like Christ. Pray for all of them, that God to provide a way of escape as well as strength as their families will put pressure on them in the future to participate in temple and ancestor worship.  

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