Author Archives: markpritchard

Our Listeners In Their Own Words, Part 3

Shaanxi

This is the third post in our series answering the question, “Have you heard anything back from your radio broadcasts in China?” So far we’ve met two believers from Ningxia, Zhu He and Wu Xia. This week we head to Shaanxi where we meet Bao Dan who was encouraged by what God had to say through one of our broadcasts.

Shaanxi was once home to the Tang Dynasty and is probably best known for the discovery of the Terra Cotta Soldiers. Along with its rich cultural heritage, Shaanxi is also known for welcoming early Nestorian Christian Missionaries into China. That heritage continues in Shaanxi as the church continues to grow alongside persecution and cult influences.

One of those believers, Bao Dan, listens to our broadcasts and had this to say of a recent broadcast:

I think the programs fit into the need of Christians who seek for truth. The word of God has power, and has left me a deeper impression by the explanations.

We’re always honored to receive feedback like this. Our goal is to provide sound biblical materials that aid in encouraging our brothers and sisters to keep believing. We’re just a part of what the God promised his children through Jeremiah the prophet:

 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord…” Jeremiah 29:12-13

We’re thankful for our brother Bao Dan and thankful for your partnership in the Gospel. Without your prayers, support and encouragement we wouldn’t be able to do what we’re doing. Thanks for standing with us, shoulder to shoulder, as we work to encourage and equip the church of China to keep believing in Jesus.

Will you take 30 seconds right now to pray for Bao Dan?

  • Pray that he would continue to seek the Lord and find understanding
  • Pray that he would proclaim the Gospel boldly among his people
  • Pray that he and the other believers in Shaanxi would be protected from persecution

Our Listeners, In Their Own Words – Part 2

NingxiaMap

This is the second post in our series answering the question, “Have you heard anything back from your radio broadcasts in China?” Last week, we met Zhu He who was encouraged by what God had to say through one of our broadcasts.

This week we’ll meet another believer from Ningxia. Wu Xia hails from Ningxia and listens to our weekly broadcasts and had this to say about our programs:

“These programs spoke well. Things that I didn’t understand have been made clear now. We are all ordinary human. Let’s study the Bible together.”

One of our driving desires with these broadcasts is to deliver content that is compelling, biblical and clear. In a land with open opposition to the Gospel and cults that look and sound similar to Christianity we hope to bring clarity to those who are confused about Jesus, faith and eternity. So that, when eternity comes and we’re all a part of that beautiful vision in Revelation 7:9-10, we’ll see the fruit of our labor and God’s work in the hearts of our Chinese brothers and sisters.

“After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice:

“Salvation belongs to our God,
who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb.”” – Revelation 7:9-10

As always, thanks for your partnership in strengthening and equipping the Chinese church. We couldn’t do this without you!

Will you take 30 seconds right now to pray for Wu Xia?

  • Thank God for his faithfulness to Wu Xia
  • Ask the Holy Spirit to continue to illuminate the truths of Scripture to him.
  • Ask God to bring him a community in which he can study the Bible with others.

Our Listeners, In Their Own Words – Part 1

NingxiaMap

Some of you have asked us the question, “Have you heard anything back from your radio broadcasts in China?” It’s a great question and one we’re excited to answer! Instead of answering the question ourselves, we’ll let our listeners answer in their own words. Over the next four weeks, we’ll share a few of the responses that were received from real listeners who listen faithfully to our shortwave radio broadcasts.

Today, our listener, Zhu He, hails from Ningxia, a primarily Muslim province within China. The believers in Ningxia not only contend with the secular humanism of China but also with the strong Muslim presence throughout the province. It’s in this context that Zhu He said:

“Keep Believing has given me very big help, making me understand much in the truth of faith.”

We know there are many others throughout Ningxia and the rest of China who contend daily with ideals and philosophies that are in direct conflict with the Word of God. We’re honored to support our brothers and sisters in China in their pursuit of Christ. It’s like the prophet Isaiah says:

“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” – Isaiah 55:10-11

The Word of God does not return void and Zhu He is just one of many examples of this truth. Thank you for partnering with us to reach Zhu He and there rest of China for the glory of God. We couldn’t do it without your prayers, encouragement and sacrificial giving.

Will you take 30 seconds right now to pray for Zhu He?

  • Thank God for his faithfulness to her.
  • Ask God to strengthen her faith.
  • As God to make her a witness to her lost Chinese brothers.

If you’d like to donate to our China ministry, click HERE.

One Week From Today

one year

In just one week, we will broadcast our final broadcast in our first year schedule! It seems like just yesterday when we launched with the series “The Deeper Meaning of the Cross.” Over the past year, we’ve seen increases in web traffic, downloads and listener feedback. We will have distributed 1000 flash cards filled with the Audio and Text versions of “An Anchor for the Soul” to pastors and Christian leaders all over China. Here is a breakdown of the final three broadcasts for this year:

  1. 2nd Timothy – Renewing Your Passion
  2. 2nd Timothy – How Will You Be Remembered
  3. 2nd Timothy – The Life that God Blesses

Will you join with us as we pray for those who will hear these messages?

We’re excited as we look forward to the next year of broadcasting in which we’ll broadcast Dr. Pritchard’s series on Romans. It includes some 72 different sermons going verse-by-verse through the book of Romans. We hope that those who listen will be encouraged and equipped to keep believing in Jesus Christ.

As always, thanks for all your support, encouragement and prayer over the past year. We’re excited you’re on board and look forward to many more years of broadcasting the good news and training pastors in China.

KBM China Update – 3/1/13

In just 4 weeks we’ll wrap up our first year of broadcasting sermons into China. Here are some interesting numbers related to this milestone:

  • 6.5 – If you listened to each one of the sermons that were broadcast back to back, you’d be listening for 6.5 days straight. And you’d need some caffeine.
  • 1,371 – Over the past year, we’ve had 1,371 different individuals come and visit our mandarin site.
  • 67 – In that same time frame, we’ve had visits from 67 different countries throughout the world. This includes countries like Saudi Arabia, Hungary, Nigeria, Bahrain, and Venezuela.
  • 28 – We’ve received hits from 28 provinces within China. The only major exceptions are the largely rural areas of the south west of China. See image below.

InternetHitsWeb

 

  • 8 – This is the number of cities in which we receive over ten visits per month (some as high as 60/month). This is important because it shows that our internet audience is growing in at least 8 cities. See images below, the bigger the yellow diamond, the more visits/month. The second image shows visits from cities within China. The larger the name, the more visits from that city.

RadioHits WordleWeb

When we started broadcasting and posting sermons on the internet, we had no idea what God would do through this ministry. We’re greatly encouraged by these numbers and praise God for the growth he’s given this ministry. As we look forward to another year of broadcasting and pastors conferences, we’re excited to see where and how God will expand his ministry in China through Keep Believing Ministries.

Your constant prayers, encouragement, and support over the past year have been indispensable. We’re grateful for your heart for China, your involvement in our lives, and for your partnership with us. We couldn’t do this without you and wanted to say “thanks” for faithfully praying and supporting our ministry in China.

Report from China – Mark Pritchard

From October 25th to November 13th Keep Believing Ministries had staff and supporters ministering in China and South Korea. Each day this week you’ll be taken on a journey to apartment churches, city walls, and into the heart of Christianity in Asia. We hope you’ll join us back here each day to read the stories, see the pictures, and rejoice in what God is doing on the other side of the world!

Mark Pritchard lives in Dallas, Texas where he is a student at Dallas Theological Seminary while working on staff at Keep Believing Ministries. Join Mark at a table with Chinese missionaries who have a vision to bring the Gospel back to Jerusalem.

An Unlikely Beachhead

Three miles from one of the most visited sections of the Great Wall of China, tucked away in a non-descript office building, twelve twenty-somethings toil away learning English, video editing, web-design, and app design. From all outward appearances, they’d pass for studious employees working hard to fulfill the entrepreneurial dreams of their leaders.

What you wouldn’t realize is that these twelve workers have already spent a year of intense Bible training in hotel rooms, basements, and barns throughout China.

What you also wouldn’t realize is that these twelve workers have left their families, friends, and homes to learn computer programs in a complicated language they can’t yet speak.

Finally, you would have no idea that the training these twelve workers receive will allow them to be “tentmakers” in countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan.

In an unlikely place, God has established a beachhead just thirty miles from Beijing, where these twelve twenty-somethings are preparing to transform China along with the rest of Asia.

These were the students Vanessa and I met on a hazy November day.

At a Table with Giants 

Aaron is one of the few male employees at the center. He told us how God told him to bring the Gospel to the people of Northeast India. Though he’s never met an Indian or eaten Indian food and can’t speak Hindi, he believes God has called him to India, and He will take care of the rest.

Teresa is 24 years old. With a red face and an embarrassed smile, she asks us to pray for God to bring her a good and godly husband. With great candor and great sadness, she speaks about her loneliness and her sense of feeling incomplete. She is heading to Pakistan husband or not, but she longs to have a partner in life and ministry.

Joy hails from a region in China known as the birthplace of Kung Fu. At the age of 18, she is the youngest of all the students. She tells us that God has laid the people of Burma on her heart. She hopes to relocate there permanently to work with orphans. Through broken English and choking back tears, she asked us to pray for her parents who aren’t Christians and don’t support her calling.

People often call older men and women of faith “giants” because the strength and evidence of their faith so easily dwarfs our own. While we met and prayed with these students, I felt like I was sitting at a table with giants of the faith. Yes, these students are young and have much of life to experience, but it’s not as if their faith was born inside the relative safety and comfort of the American church. Having endured loneliness, loss family, poverty and persecution, these young men and women are still unflinchingly obedient to wherever God calls; even if it means taking up residence in areas that our government is afraid to go.

It’s easy to be impressed with their faith.

It’s easy to be challenged by their faith.

It’s easy to see why God has chosen them for this task.

As our short time wrapped up, I reminded them of the words of Peter to the scattered, lonely, and discouraged believers in Asia Minor from 1 Peter 5:9.

“Stand firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.”

I told them that though our struggles and trials are not the same, we would remember them in prayer and in our testimony to others about what God is doing in China.

If you’ve read this far, you just realized that I promised your prayers to that small band of eager missionaries.

I hope you’ll remember them often.

I hope you’ll lay their lives, their families, and their ministry at the throne of God.

I hope you’ll join them in transforming Asia for the glory of God.

Three miles from one of the most visited sections of the Great Wall of China, tucked away in a non-descript office building, twelve students eagerly wait for the day they’re sent out to bring the Gospel to those who do not have the hope of eternity with Christ.

I promised to tell their story. Would you join me in praying for them?

Report from China – Wesley Wildmon

From October 25th to November 13th Keep Believing Ministries had staff and supporters ministering in China and South Korea. Each day this week you’ll be taken on a journey to apartment churches, city walls, and into the heart of Christianity in Asia. We hope you’ll join us back here each day to read the stories, see the pictures, and rejoice in what God is doing on the other side of the world! 

Wesley Wildmon lives in Tupelo, Mississippi and attends Mississippi State University. This is Wesley’s second missions trip, join him as he recounts meeting a house church pastor in a hotel room.

I am back home from China and could not be any more excited in what I experienced and could not be any more thrilled with the blessings that our trip to China will bring to the people we came in contact with.  This trip means so much in my everyday life and for what my future holds. Because you and other friends and family made this trip possible, I wanted to write you this brief letter and let you know what happened.

We serve a God who understands every language, different cultures and different races because he created them all. In the words of Dr. Ray Pritchard, who lead our trip, “The things that unite us are far better, more important and outweigh the things that divide us.” To hear testimonies in person from people that are being touched by Ray’s radio ministry in China via Trans World Radio was an immense blessing. The church of Jesus Christ is growing inside China despite being an atheistic country.

While in China, I wrote a personal journal each day. To give you sample, here is what I wrote on Day Four:

“We woke up in Xi’an and went to see the Terra-Cotta soldiers. Then we meet in secret (in a hotel) with Chinese Christians from all over China. I learned that for every 7,000 Christians there is only one bible teacher and he is most likely untrained, works at least two jobs because they get paid hardly anything (if anything) as a pastor. In that hotel room meeting, one guy who listens to Ray, in his early 20s, had a mother-in-law who was telling him to quit pastoring and get a job so they could afford to have a kid and begin a family with his newlywed. Then after she overheard him listening to Ray’s sermons that were translated (on the radio) she told him keep preaching and also placed her faith in Christ. She even told her son-in-law that she would try and pick up the slack so he could keep pastoring.

“Another guy who came to meet us was a school teacher who rode a bus 15 hours just to meet us at our hotel room. He too listened to Ray’s broadcast. We had to come into the hotel room two at a time so we did not become suspicious to government authorities. This man had shared about the Lord with two other teachers at school who overheard him listening to Keep Believing Ministries and they both came to faith in Christ and KBM has been their number one tool in their discipleship. It was a special night and sweet time in Xi’an.”

The one major thing that I learned from being with my Chinese brothers and sisters in Christ is that with all the reasons in the world to complain because of their persecution, government, etc. they never complained as if to say Gods grace is sufficient. They even went so far to not just avoid complaining, they were thankful for what they did have and that being their salvation. They were content with their salvation and you could see their joy stemmed from that. They understood that what made them weak is what also made them strong. This was hard to understand at first but brought to mind the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 12:1-10.

Well, that gives you a little taste of our time in China from my Journal. It was a true missions trip. Thanks so much for all your prayers and for being a part both in spirit and in truth in the movement of Jesus in China.

Report from China – Mike Maynard

From October 25th to November 13th Keep Believing Ministries had staff and supporters ministering in China and South Korea. Each day this week you’ll be taken on a journey to apartment churches, city walls, and into the heart of Christianity in Asia. We hope you’ll join us back here each day to read the stories, see the pictures, and rejoice in what God is doing on the other side of the world!

Mike Maynard lives in Tupelo, Mississippi and this trip to China was his 45th mission trip including one to Africa with Keep Believing Ministries. Here is his recounting of a worship service in an apartment in Beijing, China.

This was my second Keep Believing Ministries missionary trip and it gave me the opportunity to watch Ray minister to people that face everyday circumstances unlike anything we face. Situations that make it difficult to keep the faith and keep believing in Jesus.

We attended a secret church service in Beijing in an apartment with about 10 adults, both male and female on our first night in China. We met for about 2 hours, singing old hymns which we all knew, like “Amazing Grace” & “Victory In Jesus”. As they passed the hymnal around and they asked us to pick out our favorite hymn and then we all worshipped together accompanied by a piano & violin. I asked them if they were afraid to be heard. They told us that they weren’t afraid because they knew their neighbors who lived next door.

What impressed me most was their enthusiasm for singing. They sang with gusto! Their enthusiasm was infectious and we joined in with loud voices. Then they served us our first “home cooked” Chinese meal and then Ray preached a sermon for about 30 minutes as if he were preaching in a huge church. They loved on us and kept telling us how appreciative they were than we would come all the way to China to worship with them. They told us how they were encouraged to
keep the faith through Ray’s radio ministry and to share Christ with others one on one.