"You are My witnesses," says the Lord, "And My servant whom I have chosen, That you may know and believe Me, And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me. Isaiah 43:10
I HAVE A MAKER
have a Maker
He formed my heart
Before even time began
My life was in His hand
knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
And He hears me when I call
have a Father
He calls me His own
He'll never leave me
No matter where I go
Every time I come across this song, I am reminded that Somebody loves me, and that love is the whole motivation of life to me, and that Somebody is my Father in Heaven, His Name is Jesus Christ.
name is A.C., I am 27 years old.
I am from Meizhou,a town northeast of Guangdong province in China. I am currently serving as an intern at ACTS (www.calvarychapel.com/acts), I am involved in translating tracts and literature into Chinese.
June 10, 1975, I was born to a Communist family. I was the youngest of
three children, as my Dad would later tell me, I was an "oops"
child. (the ONE-CHILD per family policy was enforced in 1976)
People nicknamed me "ugly Negro" because of my dark skin. I remembered hating it when I was being teased, sometimes even my own family.
family moved quite a bit because my Dad's job promotions in the Communist
Party. I adapted well, especially in language speaking. People
do not like out-comers, they can easily tell what town one comes from just by their accent. I would pick up the local dialect within months and would have the privilege to be treated as one of the locals. I learned Cantonese from watching TV, later I used this language in Guangzhou,
where I was trained to be an English teacher for 5 years. This happened every time we moved. The rest of my family, on the other hand, speak the one and only dialect they know till this day.
up, with Dad always at work in another city, I watched Mom over-worked
herself trying to take care of three children and my grand-parents. I
didn't have many friends because we moved a few times and I had
to change schools. I didn't have friends to talk to. Other than making sure that we are clothed and fed, Mom and Dad didn't really do much with us kids. We never have family time, never go out to eat together. I don't remember either one of my parents ever sitting down and talking to us for over 10 minutes. Hard life deprived them of the ability of relating to another generation. Dad's only concern was that we get good grades and behave ourselves at school, because that would make him look good.
learned to please Mom and Dad by trying hard at school, but my over-all
grades were simply average. Dad had to spend a lot of money to guarantee
a position at the top school for me. They never failed to remind me of
that, which made me think they didn't want to spend that kind of money and that they want me to remember I owe them. I felt like I had to repay them with obedience in everything, as my Dad is a typical dominant father.
Dad decided to send me to Guangzhou to receive training on being an English
teacher. I went with excitement, for one, I didn't have to listen to them
mumble what a failure I had been any more, two, I loved
English. I myself wanted to become an English teacher.
the school offered two-year further training for those who pass the test.
It was a huge deal. It could determine whether one become an elementary
school teacher or high school teacher. Only one third of us
could receive the further training. There was one question, "If you do not pass the test, would you be able to pay 8,000 RMB(about 1,000 US dollars) to secure a position?" I talked to my parents who lived about 300
miles away, because it was a question for them. (In China, the family usually pay for the education for the children.) I sensed that Dad was not very happy,"If you are able, we will pay for your education, even if you get a doctorate and we have to beg on the streets for money. But if you fail the test again, don't even dream of us paying anything extra for you." And Dad hung up the phone on me. At the most crucial time of my life up to that point, instead of standing by my side, my family left me alone. I felt so rejected and hurt.
I wanted to do all I could for the test. Something else occurred. I would stay in the classroom at lunch time to study when everyone was napping. One day, one girl declared that her family had sent her money and she put it in her drawer and now it was gone. (Her drawer was locked the whole time.) Eyes were fixed on the few of us that study at lunch-time. People were suspicious. To my greatest surprise, my best-friend Candy said, "It's Angelina, I am 100% sure it is her that stole the money." I wailed when I heard it, not only because I was innocent, but also because the accusation had come from my "best" friend. I yelled in front of everyone, "I will not forgive her or anyone who believed her until they come and apologize to me one by one." A day later, the girl who claimed to have lost money, found out that she simply had misplaced it, but she was afraid to let everyone know the truth, so she kept silent.
Nobody came to apologize, I became bitter toward all of those people who thought of me as the thief. I didn't talk much at all the rest of the semester! I became a crying machine. I lost my best friend and I lost the trust in anyone. Family and friends failed me when I needed their support most.
These circumstances plus the pressure of the coming test, I could hardly take it. "What is worth living for?" I thought of committing suicide but I was too afraid.
(NOW I LOOK BACK, I KNOW THAT GOD WAS PREPARING ME FOR THE CONVERSION WHICH WAS ONLY MONTHS AWAY.)
September of 1994, I came back to the school for the further training. I made it, but barely, I was the last one that passed the test. But I didn't care, I became so proud of myself. I did it. No one stood with me, but I made it.
One day, Lynne Humphreys, a 23-year-old Oxford graduate, came to our class, "Well, I will be your teacher this semester, I want to talk about something interesting to you in our first class. Somebody give me some ideas, please.""England," "Oxford University," "Your boy-friend" People started to offer ideas, someone said "Tell us about Christianity." In denial I raised my hand and said. "Don't talk about things that don't even exist." Well, as all the other students, I had always been taught at school and at home that there is no God and human beings are evolved and all that "good" stuff. We were also taught that Christianity is western religion, and Chinese religion is Buddhism, and that religions are for those helpless, uneducated people.
Later, I found out that I caught Lynne's attention in that first class, and being a Missionary teacher, much prayer for my salvation was sent up from her and those that were behind her in England.
I became even more proud as Lynne and I became good-friends and I met most of her friends from different countries. Hey, not every one could be friends with the foreign teachers, you know. I was excited to have all the opportunities to enhance my spoken English.
At this point, God really started revealing his love for me through these Missionary teachers. For the first time, I went with Lynne and others to the orphanage, I was disgusted by the dirty, neglected babies and handicapped children. But the Missionaries were holding them, singing to them and praying over them, I saw them crying over the dying babies. I was struck, I was ashamed that I didn't have any love for these little ones, and I didn't want to accept the fact that they were so loving. I thought to myself. "They are just pretending."
More than one way, God let me hear the gospel. The biggest battle started inside of me. Because the gospel was completely contrary to what I had been taught my whole life. I couldn't pass the first verse I read, 'In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.' I could not reconcile these opposite views. But, at the same time, there was the undeniable---the love, the peace and the joy I saw among my Christian friends.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 (NKJV)
that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. 1 John 1:3 (NKJV)
The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you. Phil 4:9 (NKJV)
Jesus and his disciples all used the missionary method. I knew I wanted what they had, so badly. But how?
This went on for about 4 months. The urge in my heart to accept the Lord became stronger. Finally, on Christmas Eve, 1994, I bowed on my bunk-bed and prayed the sinner's prayer (Lord Jesus, I believe you are who Your word says you are. Please forgive me of my sins. I give my life to you) from a tract and accepted the Lord into my heart. I added a P.S. at the end: "God if You are real, You have to prove to me on my personal level, if You do that, I want to know You and I want to serve You." That was the greatest miracle of all, sin forgiven.
Little did I know that God took my prayer seriously. He turned my world down-side-up. Nothing was the same anymore, nothing. He allowed 7 motorcycle accidents and one car accident to happen to me to show me that He is real and that my life is in His hand. In all those accidents, God not only kept me alive, but also my motorcycle whole. No one got hurt bad enough to go to the hospital. And these were just the beginning of many miracles God was going to do in my life!
There was an earnest desire to share my faith from the very beginning. As God gave me opportunities, I started my walk and service with God.
1996,I graduated from college. I had three prayer requests:
A. I wanted to teach English at the top high school.
B. I wanted to get involved in a house church.
C. I wanted to be able to continue speaking English and get better.
God answered all three within one month. I became an English teacher and taught the same kids for 3 years. (from 13 until they were 16). I served with some very dear Christians at a house church, and we grew together. I got involved in the orphanage and from there met more foreign missionaries than I could imagine.
So I moved back to Meizhou, where my family lived. Dad got furious when he realized that he could not talk me out of going to church and being a Christian. He turned away from me, and stopped talking to me. It was so hard on me, because of the three children, I had always been Dad's favorite little girl. Now, Dad wouldn't even look at me, or answer me when I called him "Dad".
God said, "Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel's, "who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time--houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions--and in the age to come, eternal life.Mark 10:29-30 (NKJV)
When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the LORD will take care of me. Psalms 27:10 (NKJV)
God has done just that. Instead of bitterness, God gave me love for my Dad. I have full confidence that my family will be saved as Christians continue to pray for them daily.
As two brothers at church decided to serve the Lord full-time, I wanted to do the same thing. But I felt like, if I were to handle the Word of God and serve God full-time, I would have to know the Bible.
The church prayed with me about going to a Bible College in the States. Because I would not eligible to go to the Seminary in China, not being a member of the State Church. Also, I wanted to work with the underground church when I finish schooling.
Eight months later, God sent short-term missionaries from Calvary Chapel Bible College to Meizhou, and the leader asked me, "A., what do you want to do with your life?" "I have been praying about attending a Bible College". "You should come to the one I work at";
I applied in May, 1999. I got the visa in November the same year. Which was a complete miracle. Because I had to be detached from the school I taught at, and had to get permission from the Education Bureau of the city, and the province. I was not questioned all through out the process. I didn't use money or gifts or relationships, which are usually ways to get things accomplished. I decided that if God wanted me to go, He will open All the doors. And He did.
was on my way to the States, but I didn't have much money. A missionary
bought the air ticket for me. I was able to give the 1,000 US dollars
my parents gave me back to them. I left them a letter and told them,
"I intend to serve God the rest of my life, and He will be responsible for my life from here on."
Dad used to teased me, "If your God is real, ask Him to rain down a meal for you, so we don't have to feed you." My life since 2000 has been God's answer to my family. I didn't bring any money. God provided every single penny, and He gave me a host family here who take me as their own. God has blessed me beyond what I could ever have asked or imagined.
Before I came to this country, I said to God, "God, if You take me there, I will take advantage of every opportunity to testify what You have done in my life. I will not shun away whenever I am asked to share my testimony,whether it is one person or 1,000 people." In the past two-and-a-half years,I have been able to share what God has done in my life with many people, in the church service, home Bible Study, personal conversations, and during street-witnessing. That is why I so thrilled when L. ( from the A.C.T.S. Tract Ministry), asked me to write it out, because this way, even more people will hear about this faithful God and glory may be given onto God Himself.
Within the two years of Bible College, I learned so much, and at the same time, God taught me to stick to the simplicity of the gospel. And that my life in the little detail is a testimony, my way of life either encourage people towards the Kingdom or discourage them from it. God taught me how people matter to Him, and love should be the mark of my life and that His Word is the foundation of my walk and service to Him.
witnessing all that God has done, my Dad's gave me this little saying
he wrote for me "THE WISE DEVOTE THEIR LIVES TO MAKING THE WORLD
BETTER THE FOOLISH LEND THEIR SOULS TO GHOSTS AND GODS"
Hearing that from my dearest Daddy hurts. But God tells me that my father is blinded right now. I am confident that God will see to it that my father be saved.
I have been going to the street of America for almost 3 years, I love it that I can just walk up to anyone and share my faith and not have to worry about the cops taking me.
God bless you, whoever you are that have read God's story in my life. May He encourage you to serve Him with all your heart, soul, and mind and strength.
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