God’s Work in 2016 and Direction for 2017 in Spain
Key verse: 1Peter 1:3 – “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.“
God started the year of 2016 with his word from Hebrews 11:1-2. “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for.” God gave me the desire to learn from the ancestors of faith. Beginning with Abel, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, … I learned to live by faith although in reality it was difficult and seemingly hopeless. For God is faithful in keeping his promises. Therefore I pray to live by faith to the end.
I. God’s Work in 2016
First, God’s grace through attending the World Mission Report 2016 and Missionary Conference in Korea. Missionary Joshua and Esther Kang both joined these events. Through the study of Deuteronomy, God helped me to remember his faithful guidance for his people Israel. One word from Deuteronomy 8:3 came into my heart. “He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.“ Upon this word, God helped me to repent for my life according to the flesh. God helped me to make a decision for living a life centered on God’s word. Through fellowship with different missionaries I realized that God’s work is alive.
Second, Sunday Worship Service and God’s word. God gave us his word from Hebrews 11:1-2 and then from Acts. Hebrews 11 teaches us to live by faith, waiting for God’s reward, although the situation is different for all of us. Hebrews 12:2 helped us to look at Jesus at all times. “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Acts teaches us that God wants to change us, like the apostles, for the sake of his gospel, and I received hope of being changed. May God bless Spain with his Holy Spirit!
Amalia is from China and faithfully attends the Sunday Worship Service. She is working on her Ph.D. at Madrid University. We pray that God would use her as a professor shepherd in China. She will return home after her studies. She invited Olivia who is also from China and who has attended the Sunday Worship Service faithfully since the end of November.
Third, God who keeps and refines us through afflictions. After the conference, M. Esther Kang stayed in Korea. She went to the doctor because of swelling in her throat. She was diagnosed with thyroid cancer at an early stage. That made me sorrowful and skeptical of the future missionary life in Spain. But through the prayer support from our world mission coworkers God helped M. Esther Kang to undergo a successful operation, and the evaluation of her thyroid hormones went back to normal. Moreover, God gave us his word from Romans 8:28. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” This word gave us new strength to look away from our difficult situation and up to God who guides us for our best, step by step.
II. Direction for 2017
God’s work is miraculous. Although we came to Spain by faith, I asked myself how long I could carry out God’s work. But now God granted me to look back on his work in 2016. God helped us to apply for 5-year visas. God led Amalia to Sunday Worship Service. In November, God brought Shepherdess Walter Nett and Missionary Grace Park from Germany to Spain and gave us his word from 1Peter 1:3. “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” With this word I pray for the promising year 2017. We are God’s holy people. Although we are living in this world we belong to the Kingdom of God. May God help us to overcome the world with the living hope and to share God’s word. Next year Amalia will return home to China. She has encouraged us throughout the past 3 years. We will miss her. But God may help us to search for his sheep and have one to one Bible studies with students with a new spirit. May God use us as Bible teachers and disciple-makers and raise one Abraham of faith.
- For M. Joshua Kang to prepare Sunday messages well.
- For Amalia to be used as a blessing in her environment.
- For raising one Abraham, one Sarah and 12 disciples of Jesus in Spain.
- To invite students and have One to one Bible studies with a student.
- For Esther to grow in faith and be used preciously as a world mission coworker
- For Missionary Esther Kang to remain healthy by maintaining normal hormone values and good nutrient uptake.