Daily Topic for July 14, 2008

1 Timothy 6:6
"But godliness with contentment is great gain."

A materialistic society tends to measure gain exclusively in financial or material terms. Paul here reveals God’s counter-cultural value system. Gain is not measured by material wealth, but by a godly contentment with what we have. Can you imagine what would happen if every committed Christian were to covenant with God to be content with necessities and to use extra funds to support new missions outreach? What a fantastic leap in world evangelization would result from such a response!

God, give us Your perspective on things. Teach us to be faithful stewards of Your gifts.

Hunanese Han Chinese People in China

Rose, an 18-year-old Hunanese girl, couldn’t believe her ears. In her Xian dialect, she heard an old woman in the marketplace jeer, “Why did you dye your hair green? Did you want people to think that you had grass growing out of your head?”

The Xian-speaking Hunanese Han Chinese people are in the midst of a major generational transition. The older generation is noted for being conservative. Many Hunanese elders revere Communist China’s founder, Mao Zedong, who himself was Hunanese. Nineteenth and 20th Century missionaries noted that people in this part of China were resistant to the gospel. Even today, less than two percent of the Hunanese are believers, a rarity among a Han Chinese group.

Their youth are not embracing Christ, but they are intrigued by Western ideas and styles of dress. This conflict between new and old is not new; it became especially intense almost 20 years ago during the student democracy movement. Changsha, the capital of Hunan Province, experienced particularly intense student unrest. The government cracked down harshly on the “foreign” influences. The government and the older Hunanese population consider democracy and Christianity “foreign ideas.”

Hunanese Christians suffer persecution. Even though intense prayer has softened the hearts of the Hunanese people, tens of millions of them don’t personally know a believer who can share Christ with them.

Learn more at joshuaproject.net

Pray that God will give the few Hunanese believers the love and boldness they will need to share Jesus with their own people.-CH

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