Reaching the Nations Without The Plane Ticket
I'd like to introduce you to our new Chinese friend, Jimmy. I believe he is weeks, if not days, from being radically saved. He came to Harvest Church for the first time today, and we went to the restaurant where he works (Ichiban) after church. Jimmy came to our table and talked at length with Tim and I, and our friends Scott and Cyndy.
Here's where it gets absolutely exciting. Jimmy came to church this morning because a Chinese friend of his, Eric, came to Christ at my church two weeks ago. Our dear friend Jeff Kear led Eric to Christ, after he and his wife Maria spent months of going to Ichiban to eat, had many conversations, and several conversational English speaking sessions with Eric and his wife in their own home.
So Eric brought Jimmy to church today. Later, at the restaurant, Jimmy told us (and this is the condensed version), "I came to church, I look for life, I feel life. I look for love, I feel love. So much love. I think to myself, 'There is only one more thing - laughter. I want laughter' and next come laughter. When singing start, I feel God, my heart beat faster. I will come back. I am very close to contacting Jesus Christ. I will bring my wife and daughters to Harvest, but first my wife is flying back home for ceremony. She is Hindu, and when I married her 8 years ago, her father did not have the Hindu ceremony that releases her to my responsibility. He now agree to have ceremony, my wife is flying home in a short time for ceremony. I not feel right bringing her to Harvest to hear Christians until her father release her to me. Then I bring her."
Yeah. I looked at Tim, he looked at me. We could read each other's minds: "It is Harvest Time, baby."
His Hindu wife, soon to be coming to our church. I had to be careful not to allow my very effusive (and very Western culture) personality reveal my complete delight at the idea of this whole family coming to Christ Jesus. I just calmly nodded my head and said, "Many Christians also believe that the father needs to release his daughter into the care of her husband, too. We often include that as part of the wedding ceremony."
He seemed to find that very interesting.
I couldn't help but smile when he said he came to church looking for laughter. Jimmy has a sharp wit - he is hilariously Chinese. How brilliant, that he looked for three distinct experiences: life, love, and laughter. He called it, "three L's." He said he wondered if he'd find laughter, and then, "It happened. Lots of laughing."
I felt better, because I had cut up quite a bit when I made the announcements that morning.
I can't help it. But this time....God used my shtick as an evangelism tool. I feel so vindicated!
The food at Ichiban was....wow. Amazing. Art on a plate. Look at the sushi~
After Jimmy offered us three different desserts, all on the house, I have felt no need to eat the rest of the day.
I'm so proud of my friends Jeff and Maria. So thrilled about the way they love to include the whole body of Christ in their evangelism and relationship building efforts.
Oh. One last thing Jimmy said. He said, "Many yellows are searching for God. Many, many."
(He calls Asians "yellows".) Again, Tim and I glanced at each other, caught off guard, sort of startled...
...like how you'd feel if you were out fishing, and five big mouth bass jumped in your boat before you could even put your hook in the water.