Gender Gap

Last night’s Bible study seemed to have quite a few more girls than guys. It kind of frustrates me that ministry seems to have a natural tendency to slip this way, but I think there’s some good signs that it’s a temporary trend. First of all, the number of students with some other Christian-ish experience attending our Bible study is growing. We have a few students from Christian families, other churches in other provinces, and some from other churches who come to ours just to get some extra teaching. Though this is a fairly small percentage of the people coming to our study, this percentage is almost completely female. Primarily because almost all Chinese churches are 90+% female. Of course, this group is hardly “sheep from another fold.” One of these girls joined one of the girls’ Bible studies and just about had a heart attack when they talked about being from a Christian family isn’t enough to save. 

We have a good number of faithful guys, and a far bigger number of semi-faithful (I guess that’s really just the same thing as “unfaithful”) guy attenders. Many of these guys need some real challenging and confronting, necessarily in their own language. I’m really praying that some of these guys will continue to come until they are really convicted by the Spirit.  

Another big factor is how my wife and I spend time with the students. Whereas we have two Bible studies for girls, we have only one for guys, and it’s only for guys who feel a serious calling towards ministry and have talked to me personally about it. All told, I spend more time with fewer guys, and my wife spends less time with more girls. Both are having their own effects, and we need some more “salt pans” for guys, but there’s a few guys that have proven to be a wise investment of time, and we have to believe that investing in them is investing in others. 

We finished our study on David last night. I only felt like I really bombed one of the services. My Chinese wasn’t coming, and when it did come, it came wrong. Naturally, that was the bigger service. The second service went a lot better, and I think I used more Chinese than I ever had. Felt really comfortable. Tough text to preach – from Saul getting killed, to David killing the messenger, to David becoming the king. Like I said, I think only managed not to completely mangle it the second time around. Another girl made a profession of faith last night, so praise the Lord! This is actually the friend of the girl I mentioned the other day that just became a Christian and has really dived into involvement. Great to see these students passing the Gospel through their network.

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