Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A New Opportunity

Photo credit: tj.cuthbert

Vol 2, Issue 1

The Chinese Connection
 In the last update I mentioned that I was planning on starting to work with Chinese in partnership with the Baptist Collegiate Ministry on the UCO campus. That new ministry has blossomed dramatically in the last two months, exceeding even my initial expectations for it.

Fridays in Edmond are now exciting but exhausting for all involved. One of my friends and co-workers in this outreach, Kimily, teaches an American culture class at 3:00 to many young Chinese, discussing not only national customs and norms but also weaving in Biblical truth. When the class ends at 4:00 I take over with my English as a Second Language (ESL) class. Although I have my own Chinese students, some of the members of Kimily's class are now joining mine. Once again, I try to incorporate Biblical truth in with the discussion of American idioms, slang, and proverbs. With their interest now whetted, most of the class now heads off campus with me to the apartment of a Chinese Christian and fellow classmate. There I teach an English Bible study to the students and also to some older Chinese adults from 6:00 to 7:00. Then from 7:00 to 9:00 it is time for the Chinese Fellowship to meet, a family worship time for all ages held in the same apartment. On the 45-minute commute home my brain usually feels like mush, but there is still plenty of residual praise for all God has done during the day.

The Korean Front

The evangelical ESL classes targeting Koreans are also going well, although now that I have a Japanese student attending they are probably more pan-Asian in nature. One of the non-Christian students has started going to church with some school friends. I have volunteered to answer any of his questions on our faith that might arise. Please pray that we will see "Luke" come to Christ soon. Please pray also for "Samuel," the only Christian in the class, who has been running a fever for about a week now.

The Financial Report

As most of you know, our finances have taken a heavy hit during this transition. We are currently lacking approximately $3,000 a month in support. Please pray that God will touch the hearts of others to make an eternal investment in the lives of internationals through this ministry. If you are already partnering with us financially, please pray also about whether you or your church might be able to increase your support of this work. We also want to thank all of you who have continued to faithfully encourage and support us both in prayers and/or finances over the years.

Other Prayer Requests

Pray for "Marc," my Haitian friend here in Yukon, who lost some friends and family members in the recent earthquake. One positive thing that has resulted from the tragedy is that it has raised even more Christian topics in our discussions. In fact, every time we talk now the majority of our conversation revolves around issues of the faith. Continue to pray for his openness and possible willingness to begin studying the Bible with me.

At the same time as my ESL class is meeting on Fridays, a Bible study in Chinese is being held upstairs. Please pray for this class and the committed young woman leading the study for her fellow female students from mainland China.

Continue to pray for my progress in Chinese. My pronunciation is still terrible, but my understanding of the written and spoken language is growing quickly.

Pray for Joyce as she somehow manages to run both households while I'm in Edmond three days a week.

Dad has recently been placed on hospice, and we would covet your prayers for all us during this trying time.

Yours By His Grace,

John for the Rest of the Ropers

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