My family and are doing well in the past month. My family and sisters in our church visited a neighboring city to enjoy the beauty of the creation of God on the last Saturday of this month. I am very thankful for this opportunity to have a break with my family and brothers and sisters in church. We could hear younger sisters’ thoughts and know their daily life in a relaxed environment in this outing. It also deepened my wife’s relationship with these sisters. My son enjoyed this trip too. I was tired after the one-day trip. But I was grateful that I didn’t need to preach the next Sunday morning and can have a rest.
I preached 3 times on Sunday mornings this month. The sermons were on Galatians Chapter 4. When I was preaching on our identity as sons of God, I was moved again that we could call God Abba Father as His sons, not as slaves. I was reminded again that how honorable I am to call God my Father, and how blessed I am that God has lifted me up. It also caused me to reflect on my own life, to examine whether my life is consistent with this identity, and to see whether I have made my Father be ashamed of me. In the reflection, I could do nothing but give thanks and pray for forgiveness of sins, because my real life was so far from this identity. A missionary named “John,” a PhD in New Testament, came from Shanghai to worship with us on one of the Sundays while I was preaching. After the worship the service, he gave me some feedback on my sermon, which helped me greatly. He analyzed my sermon and gave me some suggestions from the introduction to applications, from the main point to exegesis, and from the outline to examples. I was encouraged and reminded by his feedback. I am very thankful for this opportunity to obtain guidance from such a solid brother.
We invited a pastor from Cornerstone Church in China to teach us on church polity on one Saturday of this month. It greatly built up brothers and sisters and helped them to understand how to partake in church polity as members of a local church. It also reminded me of how to lead our congregation to participate and serve in church polity. This pastor from Cornerstone Church preached on to live for Chris and to die for Christ the next Sunday morning. His preaching greatly encouraged brothers and sisters in our church to put to the death the indwelling sin in our flesh and to live for Christ. I am very thankful that God always provides these great people to help, guide and encourage me in my ministry of the serving the Lord.
By His grace, Gaius