This is part three of a four part series in which we want to connect you with the Aroma cafe staff that we’ve been working with over the summer. The reason we’re writing these blogs is because we want you, our family, to know who a little about who we’re working with here on the ground. It’s our hope that this will enable you to be more effective in prayer for the ministry we’re doing here! Thank you!
It’d been seven years since I’d become a Christian, but I didn’t know anything…
Zion told this to me with a huge smile on his face. It wasn’t the sort of smile one has after they’re caught sneaking the last piece of candy from a jar, or even one of those smiles people have when they aren’t sure of what you’re saying but nod their head anyways. This smile was one of real joy because Zion was recalling where he’d started and how far God had brought him.
Zion worked for us this last summer for three months in between college semesters. He loves music and is quite the amazing composer and pianist. I first met Zion when he asked my fellow colleague to join his a cappella group. He started coming to Aroma Church and then we were able to connect and bond over a common love of tunes.
It wasn’t until the end of the summer that I was able to sit down and go through his testimony in detail though. When I asked him to start from the beginning he gave me another big smile and started, “It began when I was playing basketball with some friends.” These friends had asked him to go to their church and so he did. What initially started as a way to bond with his new-found friends would eventually become something more… but at a slow pace.
“I quickly became a Christian, but I went to church for seven years and still didn’t really know anything.”
I asked Zion what changed that pattern and he cut to the chase. “I broke up with my girlfriend. It was really painful.” He turned to satisfaction in all the places a typical twenty year old might look. He even decided to drown himself in his work, playing and composing music. “It felt empty. I couldn’t make the songs perfect. Something wasn’t right.”
One day as he walked into his classmate’s dorm room where a teacher had left a book; a Chinese translated copy of Return from Tomorrow by George G Ritchie. “My teacher just said the book was really good.” Holy Spirit would then go on to use this story to soften Zion’s heart and prepare him. His teacher lent him the book and, “I saw the author’s relationship with Jesus and I really wanted that too.”
Shortly after, about two years ago, Zion would rededicate his life to Christ through baptism. Since then he’s experienced the peace of God in his life and loves (literally) singing His praises! While Zion has now returned to school, would you continue to pray for him? Like Andrew, Zion is the only Christian in his family. Pray that this peace would manifest in very real ways to his parents!
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33