Monday, February 12, 2007

Heavenly Man

I, like hundreds of others at Grace, am currently reading The Heavenly Man in anticipation of Brother Peter Xu preaching at our Missions Conference on Sunday, February 25.

I actually started reading the book a couple years back, but never finished it.

Are you reading it? What do you think? What do you make of all the signs and wonders that are described in the early house church movement in China? Do you believe this stuff happened? Why don't these things happen here in the West? Or do they?

I just finished chapters 9, 10 and 11 which describe Yun's 74 day miraculous fast from all food and water. I've had a couple folks at Grace ask me if I was aware that there were some questions about Yun's integrity and the truthfulness of some of what he writes and especially this 74 day fast. So I went googling.. .

I found this interesting link answering the objections to The Heavenly Man . . .

Answers to Questions about The Heavenly Man

What I read there was good enough for me.

It's not too late to jump and read with the rest of us. I hope you'll read and finish the book, if for no other reason to stretch your boundaries about God's work and the power of the Gospel in the world. When no one knew what was going on in closed communist China, the Gospel was exploding. It gives me great hope and confidence that the Gospel is doing its thing in Iraq and Uganda and in other dark parts of the world.

I think God might use Brother Xu to rock our world here at Grace. I pray He does.


Brianna Heldt said...

Okay I'm glad you posted about this! I started reading this book in January but haven't finished yet. While I am amazed by these stories and the work the Lord has done in China , the book has been really hard for me to get into. His experiences with the Lord are such a far cry from my own that I find it really difficult to relate to and therefore it doesn't hold my interest very well.

I do find myself feeling skeptical of certain things in the book (which makes me feel like a real jerk!), but I know that God works through miracles and just because I've never experienced something first hand doesn't mean God's not doing it.

It seems safe to say that these types of miracles do happen less in the West than in other parts of the world. I suppose something to take away from it all is, praise God that He is working and accomplishing His will everywhere.

Ryan MacConnell said...

I started reading "The Heavenly Man" and was completely sucked in (to the point that my Master's thesis got put on hold for the day that I was reading the book). This is a great book which everyone at Grace needs to make time to read before the Missions Conference.

Yes there are some amazing miracles which leave you in complete aw, but they serve as such a great reminder of how God provides and blesses those who follow after him.

Tim Weaver said...

Brianna, thanks for your honesty.

I, like Tim, just finished chapter 11. I'm also fighting skepticism. Some of the stories sound a bit like a man that I knew who was a fraud. I know that fuels my thoughts, but the humility and theology that is communicated is very different from the fraud. I suppose that if I read the details of Paul's life I might struggle with the same skepticism. What Brother Yun went through is so far beyond what I can fathom at times it is totally unreal to me.

I really want the Lord to turn Grace church (me included) upside-down for Jesus during this Missions Conference. I want history to report that when the Lord wanted to do awesome things in/through His people here we were willing. So, He did far beyond all that we could have ever hoped or dreamed with lives and communities being transformed by the Gospel and He was glorified.

Oh, Lord. Please?!?!?

Suzette Lyons said...

I think the hardest thing for me in the book (aside from the horror of some of the things he endured) was what it was showing me about my life.

It is easy to think that I am not called to such devotion because I am not suffering such trials. But as I was reading the book I realized that is not true. I am called to suffer and sacrifice just as much. My religious freedom allows me to choose an easier path and it is sad how often I do that.

It made me cry when I realized that I am faced with choices every day - "Go for God's glory or hold back where it is safe?" and saw how often I choose feeling safe rather than really going for it.

As for the miracles I have no doubt that they are all true. Our missionary with the Jesus Film told us just as amazing stuff. He admitted that every once in a while he calls the people who were with him. They know what he is thinking and say "Yes it really did happen!" I know I would feel that way if I witnessed those things. God is really all powerful, but some times I forget.