The Tough Questions
At UC Berkeley, Chi Kao faces difficult questions concerning faith.
Submitted by Chi Kao, University of California, Berkeley
Chi Kao’s small group discussion ended. Tim pointed
to his wife, May, and said, “She wants to believe in God.”
Chi remembers May turned bright red.
May is a visiting scholar, and Tim is staying in the States to take care of her and their five-year-old son. This past Easter, Tim accepted Jesus and was baptized. That same March, Tim invited Chi Kao to Sunday night dinners in order for her to lead an investigative Bible study with his family as well as three other families living in the same apartment building.
“Could I as a
Chi is part of a two-person COM team that ministers to Chinese students and scholars at the University of California, Berkeley. She is thankful for a passionate, diverse and bilingual team of volunteers. Her team continues to see their weekly outreach meeting have an active attendance made up of
visiting scholars who are teachers from universities all over China. These teachers are also bringing their family members.
May’s blushing was either from nervousness or excitement. May turned to Chi and asked, “Could I as a Communist Party member believe in God?”
Chi said to May, “Only you should answer that question. This is between you and God.” Their conversation started there. A few minutes later, Frank,
another visiting scholar, walked by and asked what the two were discussing. May repeated her question. Frank laughed. Of course she could believe in God. Frank then sat down and also began to ask Chi questions about God.
At present, this is a story without an end. While Frank had started to express interest in joining the Sunday night group, he told Chi that many questions arose from his personal Bible study. In addition, Frank sent Chi the table of contents from a book he read listing five disputes regarding Christianity:
1. How can there be a loving and kind God when there are evils and sufferings in the world?
2. Since miracles are supernatural and conflicting with science, no miracle can be real.
3. Since Evolution has explained life, there is no need to believe in God.
4. God killed countless innocent people, so He is not worthy to be worshiped.
5. It is too bold to claim that Jesus is the only way to God.
Please pray for the ongoing spiritual battles in the lives of Frank and May and every intellectual in this dynamic and complex group. Please pray for sincere hearts in search of truth. Please pray for Chi and her volunteers. Please pray that this story would end in Christ.
“Laura told Kate that she too had been an atheist at one point in her life.”
“I do not believe in God”
Submitted by Joe and Laura Sullivan
University of California, Davis
“I keep trying to get a job,”said a very pregnant Kate during Joe and Laura Sullivan’s Thursday English class. After recently getting her Ph.D., Kate thought that she would be able to work to support her husband until he earned his own Ph.D. Kate sighed, “But I haven’t. I think I’m a loser.”
Joe and Laura Sullivan work as COM staff at the University of California, Davis. UC Davis sits just an hour northeast of UC Berkeley and the San Francisco Bay Area. Joe and Laura have served with COM 11 years and at UC Davis since last November. Joe and Laura say that the reason they love serving with COM is because they get to share the love of God with people who don’t expect it.
Following that Thursday English class, Joe and Laura received an invitation from Kate to drop by her house for dumplings. While the three sat together eating homemade dumplings, Joe and Laura told Kate the reason for their hope. After listening to the Sullivans talk about Jesus’ love, Kate replied that she does not believe in God. Kate spoke calmly, without any edge in her voice — as if she was describing the weather.
Joe and Laura say that this is a common trait they find in their relationships with Chinese students and scholars. “We have learned that when Chinese friends like Kate say, ‘I do not believe in God’ it is not as if to say, ‘Christians should just leave me to my belief’ as we Americans might hear it. Often Chinese students and scholars are just saying that there is a lot of groundwork to be laid before they place trust in any deity.”
As they sat and enjoyed dumplings, Laura told Kate that she too had been an atheist at one point in her life. Kate listened as Laura told her story of experiencing God’s transforming love, peace and comfort.
What do success and fulfillment mean to a scholar like Kate? To her, they are deﬁned as working in her ﬁeld of study. With no job offers, naturally she feels hopeless. Please pray that Kate will come to know and trust the God of love. [--]
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