MAKE HASTE WHILE THE SUN SHINES
When the airplane landed in the Chongqing airport, brother Lesheng Yi of the Chongqing University Fellowship, acting on behalf of Pastor Minzhi Xu, came to greet me. He took me right away to the location of the summer retreat, in time for the last day of the meeting.
The journey that day in July 1949 was very memorable: one moment it was flying through clouds in an airplane, one moment it was going through mountains and hills in the tour car, another moment it was riding in a rickshaw through the sunny city, one moment it was riding a boat across the river, and another moment it was relying on the primitive means of transportation 每 across the valley in a jampan (a kind of stretcher). All things in the world change; the Lord alone has ※no variation and shadow of turning§ (James 1:17). Having let out His sheep, He personally led the way until I reached the place where he had wanted me to go.
I was scheduled to preach at the meeting for one day. Judging from the spiritual atmosphere of the occasion, the meetings for the past several days were greatly blessed by the Lord. The Lord who loved youths found lost sheep in the various colleges there and saved sinners. A good number of the students dedicated their body and heart to be His contemporary workers.
After the meeting, Pastor Minzhi Xu accompanied me on a suburban bus to the revival meeting at the Northern Hot Springs in Beipei. In the middle of the journey, the car suddenly swerved to the left and fell into a field. I was sitting on the left and was pressed by the leaning passenger on the right. As the bus was falling over, I knocked my head on the window frame. I only suffered an abrasion of the skin close to my eye. It was bandaged and healed in a few days. The passengers later talked about this incident, saying how fortunate we were that the bus fell to the left into the field; for if it had fallen into the abysmal depth to the right, we would have been broken into pieces! Pastor Xu and I had experienced ※though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for you are with me§ (Psalm 23:4). ※Oh Lord, I will praise you in the land of the living!§
I had worked in Chongqing for about 2 months and had been to Chongqing University, Normal University and Political University. While in the Chongqing Evangelistic Seminary, brother Peixin Huang, a fellow villager, and sister Quangying Wei treated me with hospitality. The Chongqing Christian students had 3 characteristics. One of these was that they loved to preach and save souls. The members of the Chongqing University often preached to other students during mealtimes. Since they all had to eat, they had to listen even though they might not want to do so. One time 2 students became so annoyed that they used the rice bowls as weapons to throw at the student who was preaching. Brothers and sisters did not feel ashamed but, rather, glorified, and continued to preach. Another characteristic was that they loved to pray. The members prayed together daily after dinner; besides, there were fasting prayers and all-night prayers. Brother Jinqi Wang told me that one night, as he was praying all by himself in the campus garden around mid-night, he was surrounded by a gang of wild, barking dogs; but, as he remained kneeling and prayed, not only did the dogs not harm him but they left one by one as if they perspired heavily, and it was not until midnight when he felt the chill that he returned to his dormitory. The third characteristic was that they loved each other. The Chongqing University served meals by accepting the bamboo slips earlier sold by the canteen. One sister noticed that another sister was not eating. At first, she thought the sister was fasting, but later noticed that she had skipped several meals. She found out later that the sister could not pay for the meals, and so let her have her own bamboo stick and suffered hunger in her place. Jesus said, ※all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another§ (John 13:35).