We arrived in China on Chinese New Years Eve after a 29 hour travel day. We were excited yet uncertain of the journey that lay before us. All preparations had been made to the fullest extent possible, yet there was so much that was unknown. Would the couples be receptive? Will the kids be excited? How will the multi-cultural aspect influence the marriage conference with 6 different nationalities represented? These questions weighed on our minds? We say we believe that God can do anything…But can He really move in a group so diverse and speak across so many cultures? Is this just a marriage conference where people will just feel good and walk away without a significant spiritual movement? We placed all of these concerns in the hands of God and trusted Him with the results.
We had three days to prepare and recover from jet-lag. Our team bonded together while experiencing the beautiful sights and culture of China. Seeing the rush of people flocking to this city for Chinese New year was unlike any other that I have experienced. When we lived in Dongguan 东莞 for several years and it would became a ghost town during this significant Chinese holiday. However, Yángshuò 阳朔 is one of the most popular tourist destinations in China, just south of Guilin, Guangxi. This small city is surrounded by unique karst mountains, winding rivers and breathtaking scenery. A hot-spot for Chinese New Year! As we look around over the sea of people that have gathered here, we see them through the eyes of Jesus with love, compassion and fields ripe for harvest. As families began trickling in for the conference, relationships began to form between them and our team. A foundation was being laid for the work that only God could do.
Final preparations were made on Monday before the conference kicked off that afternoon. From getting guest rooms ready, cooking, and last minute conference and VBS details. Kavanah House seemed to be ready for the largest crowd it has ever hosted. God has been orchestrating who would attend this conference for months. It’s been incredible to see who (and how) He as assembled them. The families range from Chinese church leaders, pastors from Shanghai, to a Ukrainian family that has lived here locally for six months who are not yet believers. God has gathered these families from around the world for a special purpose! Our God is the God of the nations! As the sessions began, we saw Him come among us and minister to the hearts of all these couples. The lost are being drawn to the heart of God, relationships are being restored, and healing is taking place as they hear God’s Design for Marriage.
We stand in awe of God’s sovereignty as we consider the potential impact in and through these families as return to their homes next week. We see the Holy Spirit drawing families to Himself as they experience Him moment by moment. Come, God of the Nations….move, work, breath on us for Your glory!