Here’s Why There’s Another Party In Heaven [GUEST POST]

This is a guest post that originated on www.thearoma.tw 
We felt like the event described below was worth sharing with you! Enjoy!


Our desire is for people to smell the Aroma of Christ through the different ministries and events we offer so that they may make the choice to follow Jesus and become more like Him. We would then like to teach them how to spread the Aroma of Jesus to their families, friends, workplaces, and even outside of the country!

Ten years ago we started our Friday night English ministry, “Coffee Talk,” as an opportunity for many people to smell the Aroma of Christ. One individual, J, began coming to the sessions in June of last year. He sat at Nathan’s table for several weeks in a row, and Nathan quickly took him in as a friend. Later, they began spending time together outside of Coffee Talk. Another Taiwanese church member, James, also started reaching out to J and he has since became part of our community.

Within the past few months, J has begun attending church services and has become much more interested in what it means to follow Jesus. Just a few weeks ago, Nathan asked J if he would be interested in them reading the Bible together. J agreed — enthusiastically!

This [past] Sunday (03.04.18), Chris gave the call to make the choice and say “Yes!” to Jesus. At the end of the service, Nathan and J came to the front to pray with Chris and do just that. Jesus says, “There is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents!” (Luke 15). We rejoice with the angels as another lost sheep has been found!

Praise Jesus for the work God is doing in the hearts of those who have smelled the Aroma of Christ! May many more follow the same path!

For privacy reasons we’ve blurred the image used above and edited our new brother’s name.

February Update

Even though February was a short month, a lot of cool things happened for our family – some big and some small!

Valentine’s Day
Since Valentine’s Day fell during Chinese New Year, we were able to take the day off and just spend time together as a family. For the second year in a row, that meant eating pizza! Yum!

Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year usually falls in late January or February. Since it’s based on the Lunar calendar, it’s different every year. For about a week, businesses close and families have large celebrations – there’s lots of good food! Often, people use this time to travel out of the city to visit their families.

This year, we got to celebrate CNY Eve with both American and Taiwanese friends.Our leaders, Chris and Jamie O’Dell, usually invite a handful of their friends who may not have family to go back home to. We ate too much, laughed a lot, and played fun games!

Kennedy started school!
After Chinese New Year, Kennedy started school! It had been a long time since Kennedy was in school. The first couple of days were a bit rough…Kennedy was sad to be away from mom and dad all day, and she had to get used to being in an all-Chinese environment all day, but now she’s used to it and couldn’t be more excited! She loves it!

Brittany also started school!
On the same day that Kennedy started school, Brittany did too! As a way to supplement our support, Brittany has started teaching English. She teaches at a school not too far from our house, and only teaches in the morning. The kids are ages 3-6, and so, so cute! This job works out really nicely and still leaves plenty of time to work at Aroma!

Here are some things you could be praying about:

  • Pray for continued support. We are not currently at 100%. We are still in need of monthly supporters – if you’d like to chat more, or know of someone who is looking to give, let us know! If monthly doesn’t work right now, but you still want to give, you can give a one-time gift towards Justin’s Mandarin school…it’s $1000 per semester, so anything helps!
  • Kennedy has had a cough and runny nose the last couple of days. Pray for health and energy. The weather in Taipei has been all over the place recently!
  • Pray for Justin as he’s in school.

My tooth fell out!

Right before Chinese New Year I chipped my tooth. Actually, I didn’t chip it…

A part of my molar just fell off. It didn’t hurt at all, but I was pretty freaked out. I will admit though, I wasn’t surprised. The tooth that fell apart was one that would give me a little bit of pain every couple months… and it had been for years.

You see, the problem is, I really don’t like going to the dentist. I don’t even really like thinking about going to the dentist. The whole process of having someone sticking tools into your mouth just seems really invasive. As a child I remember the dentist always telling me that I treated my teeth poorly and he was using these big tools because of the damage I had done.

So… why am I telling you this?

Well, something very similar happened to me a year ago. A few of my spiritual teeth fell out. I could tell my spiritual health was not as it should be. There was damage I had done to myself over a long period of time and now there were bigger problems. So, I did what someone with a physical tooth problem would do… I consulted the Dentist.

Through prayer and questioning why I was experiencing such bad spiritual health, God showed me I had no real routine of investing in my spiritual health. While I read my Bible regularly, I began to feel very convicted that I did not have a good routine of reading God’s Word and listening to what He had to say in the scripture. I was expecting God to use me and for great things to be done, but I wasn’t preparing my spiritual body daily. No wonder things weren’t always working! That’s like someone who has never ran a mile, standing up one day and trying to run a marathon!

And so I write to you today because I have a glorious testimony of how God healed me spiritually and now speaks into my life daily. It all started with reading my Bible. I began reading my Bible every. single. day. a little over a year ago. Some days, I wondered what God wanted me to get out of what I was reading, but it’s crazy how even the stories straight out of the Old Testament can apply to my life today.

Since then, my spiritual health, and actually even my family’s physical health, has improved. Through the Father’s healing I have become more patient, more forgiving, more loving, less selfish, less angry, and less anxious. Go ahead and ask Brittany for proof! God worked on the damage that I had done and by reading my Bible every day and investing in my relationship with my Creator, He prepared me for every single hardship I can remember over the last year… and there have been many. Without His grace and mercy, and without His Word in my life every day, I am certain I would not be here in Taiwan. Yet, because of Christ’s love for me and the Spirit’s help in solidifying this routine, my family and I are here in Taiwan. We continue to help further the Kingdom through the Aroma community… and for this opportunity I am so, so thankful.

Blessings and peace,
Justin


PS: If you’re curious as to what my routine looks like… I follow the Bible Project’s reading plan. It’s called Read Scripture. Check out the link below!
http://www.readscripture.org/