What a privilege it was to be in Asia for the Christmas season! It gave us ample opportunity and an awesome conversation starter to prayerfully share the Gospel. Due to an increase of persecution of Christians, we weren’t able to attend as many Christmas parties as we were anticipating. Also many of the international and underground churches had been shut down while we were there.
So, a few days after Christmas our contact decided it was the perfect time for us to throw a Christmas/New Year’s Party! We texted everybody, inviting all our friends, people we met in restaurants, others we encountered on the metro system. We pulled it off by renting out a conference room in a hotel, and in total we had over 80 people come to celebrate with us! We danced, played games, and sang worship! We also did a skit portraying Jesus’ love, one of my teammates shared his testimony, and we shared the Gospel! This is a night in Asia I will never forget. We shared the true meaning of Christmas to those who had never heard the precious name of Jesus, in this closed country!
In our team, worship and intercession quickly became imperative, and we came with an urgency to meet and praise Jesus corporately. Doing this, so freely with those who do not claim Jesus as their Savior on this night, gave us so much joy. Worship is our way of life, and it was so fitting that Romans 12:1-2 became a reoccurring verse all throughout our time in lecture phase and on outreach.
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
This Christmas party was an extension of our daily worship, showing our friends that we are instruments used for God’s glory and that He is our all-satisfying treasure! It was a blessing to share and celebrate Jesus’ birth and the sacrifice He made for us to know Him. And an honor to be a vessel for the Kingdom in a country where the Gospel isn’t plainly known.
My team and I saw first-hand of how bound this particular nation of Asia is to its traditions and worship of ancestry. You can join in prayer for eyes to be opened within this country, for the scales to be removed and for a fresh revelation of the One True God! Pray against the spirit of ancestry that people feel they must uphold, and break the chain of tradition! Be encouraged that the Christians within Asia are so on fire for Jesus and are unashamed to claim Him as Lord. They count everything as rubbish and count the cost, finding Jesus worthy! May we truly find our old lives dead, and seek that our living sacrifices present the radiance of His utmost worth and value.
By Molly Schell