Exclusivity of Way

Getting ready to leave town again this morning. I’d worry about my language progress, but it seems that my language improves when we travel. When you’re living in a hotel, eating in restaurants, you’re put in more situations where you’re forced to speak. So, anyway, we leave for the airport in about an hour.

Good Bible study last night. Fewer in number, but I think there was a purpose in that. To be expected after packing the place to uncomfortable levels last week. Tough message, I think, for most to accept. We’re still studying the claims of Jesus, and last night we hit John 14:6, Jesus’ exclusivity claim. He’s not A way, He is THE way. My wife’s dad also gave a great testimony about the difference between a religion and a relationship, which has proved to be a major sticking point for many of the students.

I especially ask for your prayers for Jt. Last night was his first time back after the summer break. He’s from our school, and he’s been reservedly interested in the Bible study since he first heard about it. He’s a super nice guy, and is a skilled small-talker, but last night he wanted to talk about something different. He asked me after the study if a person believes in God but is not a Christian… That was pretty much his question – what do I think about that situation. So we talked about the difference between believing that there is a God, and trusting in His Son’s Gospel. Keep him in your prayers! I think he’s close to trusting Christ!

From a school on the other side of town comes L. He’s quiet, just kind of hangs in the background a lot, so I wasn’t even sure if he comes regularly (I had to ask my wife – she says he’s here every week). He came right up to me last night to talk about the Bible. Most of them only know that we’re going to be here for two years, they don’t know that we’re planning on spending our lives working in the Chinese church. So L. tells me, “The Bible is such a big book. I don’t think we can learn it all in two years.” I tried to explain to him that we can never exhaust the teachings of the Bible, and to teach the entire Bible thoroughly would take many, many years. This is why personal Bible study is so important. I told him in the future we would have a class that would teach you how to study the Bible for yourself, and he seemed pretty excited about that. Sigh. Language, language, language.

I’m getting a lot of good practice, though, these days. My throat is sore today from all the talking yesterday. Normally when I talk to the students now, they talk to me in English, and I talk to them in 75% Mandarin. Chenglish, you might say. It ain’t pretty, but it’s better than any book study.

St. and I looked at a couple more places yesterday. One is a good finalist. Quiet neighborhood, a big central room (the space is already being used a classroom), and closer to usability than option #1. But I’d still like a little bigger, a little done-er. We’ll see…

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