By: Yvonne & Paul Lai
Translator: Agnes K Y Tai
At a revival conference when I was eighteen years old, I received God’s calling in that revival meeting that was led by a Pastor Lee from Malaysia. Offering my whole being to the Lord as living sacrifice, I was willing to walk with God just like Enoch in the Old Testament. During prayers I could visualize myself as a little child, standing before the Lord, hoping that He would use me. I knew, standing in front of my almighty Father God, that I was so minute and insignificant and yet I firmly believed that as long as I offered up my life that He would definitely be able to use me. So I offered myself to the Lord based on simple pure faith, letting Him work His perfect will through me as I relied on this simple pure faith.
At the age of twenty-two, God’s calling arrived upon me again. During my quiet time one day, God called me again to offer myself as His servant. Based on faith, I promptly responded to His calling. I believed that only with faith like that of Moses while leading the Israelites through the Red Sea would God be able to fulfill His perfect will through me. Our God is a mighty and amazing God. In the thirty years that followed, He has been guiding me faithfully. He selected a preacher as my lifelong companion. We knew “Can two people walk together without agreeing on the direction?” (Amos 3:3) A preacher and the spouse have to share the same vision, the same burden and hence be able to go through good times and hard times together. (Yvonne)
At that time, when I was studying theology in Hong Kong, I mailed the pamphlet titled “Dedicated to the Unknown Preacher” written by Mr. Bian Yunbo to my beloved one in East Cambodia, hoping that she would resonate with me after reading it and would be willing join me to become an unknown preaching couple. Thanks to the Lord, while she was pursuing an education in France, she became very clear about God’s calling on her life and agreed to embark on the missionary journey with me.
Prior to taking up theological studies, God touched me profoundly in many ways through this poem, calling me to identify with the aspirations of the author. I give thanks to the Lord for this and am grateful for the reminders and encouragements of the author.
Several years ago at a revival meeting in Vancouver I was fortunate enough to meet the author – the elderly brother Bian Yunbo. I held his hand, telling him excitedly that it was this poem of his that emboldened me in being loyal in my ministry, and how early on it was used by the Lord as a catalyst to stir our prayers for life partners. God was so faithful to answer, giving such a crystal clear response from my beloved one to come join with me in the missionary journey. I am so thankful to the Lord. (Paul)
AFTER AN EIGHT-YEAR WAIT, MARRIAGE FULFILLED
After a long wait of eight years, just when I learned that she also liked me, we faced objection from her father, all because people in that era called those who offered their life to preaching as “poor preachers”. As he deemed a preacher’s earnings as meager, he worried about uncertainties in his daughter’s
livelihood after getting married. And I was also anxious about my unclear future, there were several times I couldn’t get approval in my application to study theology abroad. (Paul)
I posted a letter seeking my father’s agreement to my marriage, and also mailed a letter written in French to my 4th younger sister, asking her to carefully observe the response of our father when he was reading my letter, and then write to tell me. My sister wrote back to tell me, “After reading the letter father continuously paced back and forth at our place.” This was obviously nervousness and a restless mind, not knowing how to handle the matter. On top of that, my 3rd younger sister has written a very long letter in France to explain in details how I felt, asking father to agree to our marriage. But thanks to the Lord, after some time, he finally replied. Thanks to the Lord, He listened to our prayers at the end. My letter to father had said, “I’d like you, father, to joyfully agree and bless us. Then would I leave France for Canada to be married to Paul.” Father truly listened to his beloved daughter. His letter back to me was written like this, “I am joyfully agreeable with your union in the Lord with Paul Lai” and his seal was impressed on his personal stationery. When I got father’s letter, I couldn’t help but to cry a good bit. Thanks to the Lord, God finally listened to our prayers and the next day I took the flight to Canada. We were so happy, so excited while waiting for our wedding day. (Yvonne)