Reflecting on the last 30 years of China ministry

The end of 2016 marks the 30th year of my ministry with Chinese. I have witnessed, first hand, some amazing changes and transformations in China. The standard of living when I first came to China to study Chinese in 1986, had all the marks of an underdeveloped country, people’s thinking was very closed, interaction with the outside world was very minimal and the church was nearly invisible in society.
Thirty years later we see an economy that seems to be daily expanding, people are much more open-minded, interaction with the outside world has increased greatly and the church is becoming more and more visible in Chinese society. An example of that comes from a book I have been reading recently entitled China’s Urban Christians by Brent Fulton. He comments about the 2008 earthquake in Sichuan that left 70,000 dead and scores more injured, that the church moved from being on the margins of society to being thrust into the center. The relief effort statistics, according to official numbers, recorded that 60% of those involved in the relief effort who were local Chinese, professed Christianity as their religion. 
God is growing his church here in China and the church is positioned to make a mark for God’s kingdom both in China and potentially in the world. To be invited to be part of this effort is a tremendous privilege. God has called our family to be part of coming alongside the local church as it grows, expands and matures. This is what gets me up in the morning.
As we celebrate Christmas please remember what God is doing here in Asia. Ancient spiritual strongholds are being brought down. New converts are coming into God’s kingdom daily. Nonetheless, there is much to be done. There are still people groups that resist the gospel and are in darkness. Please pray this season that God would powerfully break through these strongholds and that the light of the gospel would cone shining through.



  1. I am proud to call you my friend and fellow minister of the gospel. Thank you for your faithfulness to my people. May God continue to bless and guide your work.

    1. Thanks brother, you are too kind. I hope all is well with you and the family.

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