Shining God’s light in dark places:
discipling Christians in China during the coronavirus outbreak

How Christians in China are responding to the coronavirus outbreak

 

At the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, there was a lot of ‘bad news’ in the press and through social media channels. The situation in China seemed hopeless. People kept watching the news, reading reports, true and fake ones, watching videos and their hearts where filled with fear.

Many were puzzled, asking themselves why such a disaster was happening so suddenly and why the virus was spreading so quickly. And they had no idea how to deal with it. Christians in Wuhan and other places like Shenzhen, Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing and other places were gripped by fear.

In February, Christians across China began to pray for all the infected and for the medical personnel helping them, but most of their prayers were still in fear. Just like some of the Israelites in the Old Testament, they prayed earnestly but they lacked faith and true hope.

Rumours were increasing, fake videos were everywhere, and fear and panic were controlling people’s hearts and minds. But, then thank the Lord, just like the lightning in a dark valley, the Holy Spirit inspired some pastors to start a 40 days prayer and fasting initiative in their churches. So, as they fasted and prayed many believers started to re-focus their attention on God’s unchangeable love and protection.

In some churches, the older Christians shared their testimonies from the time of the Chinese Cultural Revolution inspiring other believers to be courageous and to trust in God as their refuge and helper in this time of trouble.

And, as you might have already read about on social media, one church in Wuhan saw the Covid-19 outbreak as a precious opportunity to preach the gospel. They bravely went out on the streets of Wuhan and distributed free face masks and gospel tracts.

They told the inhabitants in Wuhan: “There is one thing more contagious than coronavirus, that is sin. There is one thing more dangerous than the physical death, that is spiritual death and final judgment from God.”

Today, people in the affected areas of China are facing many challenges, such as the sharp increase of unemployment, the shutdown of many companies and factories, chaos of domestic logistics, lack of supplies in some cities and increased food prices but they are not giving up.

In Wuhan and other cities in China, Christians are holding on their faith and they would very much appreciate your prayers and your help right now. We can join hands in prayer with them and we can give them help and comfort during these uncertain times.

How our DPM China outreach is serving the church via digital channels

From the first day of the coronavirus’ outbreak, we knew that we had to do something to change our strategy of engaging with Christians and new seekers via WeChat (China’s top social media channel)  so we could respond to their true needs and the challenges they were facing.

For example, a few months before the outbreak, some brothers and sisters on WeChat requested teaching articles by Derek Prince on the topic of marriage and relationships. But, as the situation in China change so did their requests.

They came on WeChat eager to know how to live in uncertain times, not how to date. Eager to know how to survive and how to serve others. They came looking not just for the usual spiritual bread but for the living word which could speak to their hearts and give them comfort at this very moment.

Therefore, we deliberately uploaded on WeChat excerpts from Derek Prince’s teaching from books like ‘Faith to Live By,’ ‘Praying for the Government,’ ‘Shaping History through Prayer and Fasting’,’ The Foundation Series’ etc.

We did our best and are continuing to do so to help Christians in China to grow spiritually by learning more about important topics such as faith, fasting and prayer, repentance and final judgement.

We are equipping Christians in China to intercede on behalf of their nation and country and to have a strong and unshakable faith in these difficult times. We are also helping them to prepare well for the end time.

Another thing we are doing via WeChat is to encourage believers to proclaim God’s word and to use it as their daily protection. For example, we are encouraging them to recite Psalm 91 or Psalm 27 and other Bible passages.

We are telling them that just as Joseph made preparation before the severe famine, we all need to prepare well before the spiritual famine. Because the persecution of Christians in China is on the increase and no one knows whether believers will be allowed to read the Bible freely in the future.

Personally, I like proclaiming Bible verses and I enjoy reciting the Psalms – this is a real blessing to me. So, I have shared this method of reciting Bible verses with many Christians during our WeChat communications.

We are eager to continue to upload valuable Bible teaching from Derek Prince on WeChat because we want to grow this digital ministry which is blessing and encouraging many Christians in China.

We know that this is a hard time for all of us, but please remember our ministry in your prayers and send a gift to enable us to equip more Christians in China today.

By donating just £12 today you can help us expand our digital ministry in China.

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What Christians who are engaging with us via WeChat are saying

Many brothers and sisters in Christ have written to thank our DPM China Outreach team for encouraging them in their spiritual journey via WeChat.

Here is a selection of some of their comments:

  • I am a brother in Wuhan. Because of coronavirus, our church’s Sunday services stopped. And, although I got messages and Bible verses from my friends on WeChat, I still felt very weak spiritually. This changed after I found some articles by Derek Prince on WeChat. I felt really encouraged by such powerful teaching. Now, I trust God more in my everyday life.

  • Thank the Lord for all these messages from Derek Prince. They are very helpful during this dark time. Many believers lost their jobs and their faith because of coronavirus. I have shared your materials among the believers in my church and got very positive feedback. They all said they got encouraged and comfort. They want to hear more of this kind of Bible teaching.

  • I found your WeChat platform two years ago. Since I was working for a very big foreign company in Shanghai, I never had time to go to church because I had to work during the weekends. This is the reason why I always search for online teaching by different methods. Comparing with other teachings online, I really found the teaching of Derek Prince clear and practical. We truly need more such balanced teaching like the ones from Derek Prince!

  • Thank you for your hard work in making this spiritual bread available! This teaching is very precious. Every time we get it, we read it in all our church’s groups. Because of coronavirus, we cannot go to church now, but we are still sharing these articles and encouraging believers by WeChat every day. Please continue doing such good work! We really need them! And really need more of them!

  • We thank the Lord that He is using this WeChat platform to support Chinese Christians at this hard time. As far as I know, since China government took actions to strictly preventing more internal news leaking out, there are few reports outside on real situation in China now. But through the connections with friends and families, we know that the situation is still severe. Not only is the fatal epidemic still there, but there is also recession in the economy and chain reactions as a result.

  • We do pray that God will use this WeChat platform more and more to encourage believers in   China. Your WeChat platform is just two fish and five loaves, but we believe that God will use it for His glory.

This short report was produced by Derek Prince Ministries China Outreach team, March 2020.