Thanksgiving Review

 

2008 will soon be over. At this year-end, we truly have much to be thankful for to God. Let this writer now review with you all aspects of development of the church¡¦s work during the past year, so that together we can reflect, examine, admonish each other and offer our thanks. The theme of the church this year was: ¡§Follow the example of Christ united in spirit; discharge God¡¦s will bound together by love.¡¨ All the messages from the pulpit and in my Shepherd¡¦s Voices exhort everyone to implement the Truth that you have heard, follow the example of Christ, long for His Coming, live with a holy and loving heart, and carry out the will of God.

 

Concerning worship and thanksgiving: God chose us to be a royal priesthood in order for us to worship and serve Him on earth. Thank the Lord! Each week, the church has Bread-breaking and Worship services, so that we have the opportunity to remember Jesus Christ and His great love on the Cross. Do you really treasure and enjoy these moments of worship and thanksgiving every week? In March, the church celebrated its 13th anniversary of establishment. On October 3, we had our first ¡§Worship Night¡¨, when we contemplated and praised the Lord¡¦s grace of salvation through four musical interludes.

 

Concerning spiritual nurturing: God has greatly blessed our church, and speaks to us through many of His servants. Some have come from afar especially to build us up through the Truth. Besides delivering sermons each Sunday from the pulpit, the church also held several spiritual nurturing assemblies. During one such gathering in March, Brother David Ng took four sessions to admonish us to ¡§Imitate Christ¡¨. At our Summer Conference, he used eight sessions under the theme ¡§The Lord died for me; I live for the Lord¡¨ to encourage us to apply ourselves in service to God. And in the nurturing sessions in November, he utilized the example of Noah, the righteous man at the end of age, to remind us to wait reverentially for the Lord. As well, in April we had Brother Wong Kwok Hin here to share the message: ¡§The will of God is Jesus Christ¡¨; in October, Brother Yip Tak Sang spoke on ¡§The man who came out of the fish¡¦s belly¡¨; and in September, Sister Teng Chang Tze Yin shared with us ¡§Confronting the crisis of the New Age Movement¡¨ etc. I am sure we were all deeply and abundantly enlightened. Over at the English Worship, God sent several servants who love Him faithfully to instruct our youth, as well as two missionaries from the OMF, Richard Schlitt and Garrett Jones, to share with us their missionary testimonies.

 

Concerning witnessing the Gospel: Thank God for using us who are frail vessels! As of the year to date, we had 326 new visitors who attended our Sunday services. 25 of them converted to the Lord. The church conducted three Sunday Gospel Services ¡V ¡§Where to find true blessing¡¨ in February, ¡§An affair in life not to be missed¡¨ in May, and ¡§Manage your life¡¨ in October. Eleven people came to Christ through them. Also, the Lord provided opportunities for us to bear witness at the Gospel services held in English in September and by the Elijah Fellowship in November. According to numbers from the Outreach and Ministry Department, during twelve instances when we went out to preach the Gospel, we contacted 1,165 persons, five of which converted to the Lord. There were 270 occasions to talk at length about the Truth, and 620 people accepted Gospel tracts. May God use the seeds of the Gospel that we had sown so that they may some day produce harvests. In order to encourage brothers and sisters to bring our non-believing family members to Christ, the Outreach and Ministry Department invited Brother Pond Chan to share his testimony with us in January, and also handed out the names of non-believing family members during our Wednesday prayer meetings so that we could intercede for them. God listened to our prayers, and consequently the parents of a sister who were visiting from Wuhan heard the Gospel message and believed. As for equipping to preach the Gospel, five of our flock completed a three-month Short Term Missionary Training course in December. May God use them.

 

Thank God! At the beginning of June, 14 members were baptized into the church. Externally, the church donated to rescue operations after the storm in Myanmar and rebuilding efforts after the earthquake in Szechuan. The Deacons and Elders Committee also decided to offer support for several Evangelical organizations so as to participate in the extension of the Kingdom of God and promote gains in the fruits of the Gospel.

 

Our merciful and loving Father in Heaven! Thank you for your guidance, providence and protection this past year. May you accept our heartfelt exaltation and gratitude! Amen.

 

By: Daniel To