December 9, 2017

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Well, as you can see in the picture above, we are back in Asia. Can you find me in the picture? 🙂 After getting a health clearance from the vascular surgeon and the neurologist, we immediately headed back “home” to Asia. And, may I say, “It’s good to be back!”

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The past three months have been “trying” to say the least. Between our granddaughter going to heaven in September and my having a mini-stroke in October, we have been busy dealing with unexpected and unpleasant circumstances. Denise and I are both grateful for the many prayers, emails, phone calls, and text messages during these trials. As always, God has been good and gracious during the trials and so have God’s people, both in the United States, in Southeast Asia (Laos, Cambodia, and Thailand) and China!

Of course, it’s been good to be “back in the saddle” again. God is doing some amazing things here in China. It was a blessing to be back in our services, our Monday evening Men’s Leadership Meeting, and our Tuesday time of teaching the men who are leading the ministry here. PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR OUR CHURCH AND OUR ATTEMPT TO PLANT MORE CHURCHES IN THIS CITY AND THROUGHOUT THE PROVINCE!

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While I was not able to go, a team of nationals from our church here went to the southern part of our province and spent a week teaching and training some believers from four different rural churches. Five days of teaching (8 hours per day) and two days of practical ministry.  Most of the people they were training were from the Miao and the Yao people groups. Both people groups are considered Unreached People Groups (less than 2 percent professing any form of Christianity). From what I hear, God moved in a very special way. PLEASE PRAY FOR THESE DEAR MIAO AND YAO PEOPLE AS THEY ATTEMPT TO REACH THEIR PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!

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It has been a blessing to have a few folks over our house for food and fellowship. We try to do this once or twice a week. Sometimes our guests are unbelievers and at other times believers, but we use the tool of hospitality to reach and teach people. Leo (pictured below) is meeting with me on a weekly basis. It’s a time of accountability, Bible study, and we always give him a good meal. PLEASE PRAY FOR LEO AS HE IS GETTING READY TO START A NEW HOUSE GROUP IN A FEW WEEKS!

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Barry and Joy (both doctors) are dear friends of ours. They were a tremendous help when I had my mini-stroke. I have no idea what we would have done without them. They are fairly new Christians. They have a heart for God and desire to use medicine as a tool to reach the rural people of this country. PLEASE PRAY FOR BARRY AND JOY AS THEY PURSUE CHRIST AND THE PURPOSE OF CHRIST FOR THEIR LIVES!

Of course, while we were in the States to deal with my medical issues, I had the opportunity to preach a few times for our church, teach in Sunday school, and preach for the college. As always it was a blessing PLEASE PRAY THAT THE MESSAGES WE PREACHED AND THE LESSONS WE TAUGHT WHILE IN THE STATES WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT!

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Just before my wife and I headed back to China, our co-laborer in China, Dick Baucum (pictured above) arrived in the States for a short furlough. He had a chance to meet my brother Pastor Joe for the first time. PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR PASTOR JOE AND HIS WIFE MARY!

A FEW ADDITIONAL PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • Pray for God to bless our five present house groups (potential future churches) and the new group Leo will be leading soon.
  • Pray for our time of transition here as a church.
  • Pray for those in leadership here at the church as we are beginning to train our folks – including our leaders – to disciple others.
  • Pray for Zhang Lun, Li, Richard, and Peter (and their wives), as God continues to mold them into the men and “leaders” He wants them to be.
  • Pray for Jack, Maggie, and Hu Ying’s salvation!
  • Please pray for our teams in Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia. 
  • Pray for my upcoming trips to Laos (December) and Thailand (January) to be with our teams for a time of ministry and fellowship.
  • Pray for Dick and Trish Baucum to have a fruitful furlough.
  • Pray for our ministry in Laos, as we consider assisting them in starting a Bible Institute.

Again, my wife and I want to thank you for your continual and consistent prayer and financial support. We also want to thank many of you for being a tremendous blessing during our time of need. We love and thank God for you all!

For HIS Glory in the Nations,

Johnny and Denise Esposito

 

October 22, 2017

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Our trip to the “Creative Access” nation, as always, was tremendous! I had the opportunity to preach four times for our team in the capital city, as well as one time for another church that I have preached for many times over the past four years. In addition to preaching five times, I also taught another four days, which included an extensive Question/Answer Time, for our team’s leaders and upcoming leaders.

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59B1DE9A-88E0-402F-9B67-E2AABE48EE55PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL WATER AND BRING AN INCREASE TO THE SEEDS THAT WERE SOWN WHILE IN THIS “CREATIVE ACCESS” NATION!

I also had a chance to make a few visits in a village outside the capital city and meet some precious Hmong folks. The Hmong people are wonderful people. And the children are absolutely adorable. Our teams in the “Creative Access” nation and Thailand are reaching many Hmong people–young and old alike!

27D3A6B9-34AD-421C-AABF-26E02E9C220DPLEASE PRAY FOR OUR TEAMS TO CONTINUE TO REACH THESE DEAR HMONG FOLKS, ESPECIALLY THOSE IN THE VILLAGES!

While in the “Creative Access” nation, my wife and I sort of adopted a homeless girl and her father. Just about every evening, either she found us, or we looked for her. We would give her and her father a little bit of money, food, and water. Her name is Nout! On our last night before leaving the country and heading back for China, Jui and I had to hunt her down before finding her. In fact, I had to pray and ask God to help us find them. All I can say, is God answers prayer. We brought her and her father a meal fit for a king and his princess. They were happy, and so were we!

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471E5389-594E-4A73-AA53-E0F6611CC496PLEASE PRAY FOR NOUT, HER FATHER, AND THE MANY POOR AND NEEDY IN THIS PART OF THE WORLD!

This “Creative Access” nation where my wife and I lived and served for 17 months has a population of about seven million people with less than two percent of the population professing to be “Christian.” Sixty-five percent of the country is Buddhist and about thirty-four percent Animist. There are 132 different people groups in the country and 111 of these are considered Unreached and many of them are Unengaged, which means NO ONE IS TRYING TO REACH THEM!

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Both the picture at the beginning of this update, as well as the picture above are just a couple of the many pictures I took of Buddhist monks during our trip. In the capital city, there are over 300 Buddhist temples. And each of these temples has more monks – probably three times as many – than there are IB missionaries in the entire country.  As I mentioned above, my wife and I served with our team in this country for 17 months and we can honestly say we love the country and we love the people. While with our team, our primary objective was to assist them in moving forward with God and on to the next step in their ministry. God is doing some awesome things in and through our team.

83341224-1E9F-4866-8FD8-53B6FF76DAD0PLEASE PRAY FOR KOUMALY AND DARATH THONGDY, OUR TEAM, AND FOR MORE LABORERS IN THIS NEEDY COUNTRY!

Immediately upon returning to China, we got busy with the task at hand here. Our ministry here is in a time of transition. We are focusing much attention on discipling and training up nationals, not only to eventually take over this ministry here, but also to plant new churches in this city and this province. Our church service on Sunday was jam-packed with a wonderful spirit, a fantastic testimony by a young lady named Christine, and my wife and I had the opportunity to teach a few of our teens!

071164F7-F049-4B04-AEC4-A86C773DF3BAPLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL CONTINUE TO BLESS OUR SERVICES AND USE OUR PEOPLE TO REACH THEIR FAMILY, FRIENDS, AND CO-LABORERS WITH THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST!

Our Tuesday Men’s Discipleship and Training time has been changed from Tuesday afternoons to Monday evenings to open it up to a few more men who cannot make it during the afternoon hours. More than anything else, this is a time of instruction and preparation for some of our most committed men. While we had a few men missing this past week our time together was very helpful!

A8FAA715-E1D7-4E64-B929-5955DFDE5B4EPLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THESE MEN’S MEETINGS TO RAISE UP MORE SPIRITUAL UNDERSHEPHERDS WITH A HEART FOR CHRIST AND THE CAUSE OF CHRIST!

It is also a blessing to see our relationship with Maggie and Hu Ying growing. Neither of these ladies are saved, and in fact, Maggie (in her mid-30s) told us she knows only one Christian. Denise and I had a chance to go out to eat with them and give a few gifts for Maggie and her daughter recently!

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0F5684F0-607A-40F4-834F-F6A180140C07PLEASE PRAY FOR MAGGIE AND HU YING’S SALVATION!

I just started meeting with Li Huang (Leo) on a weekly basis for a time of discipleship. He has known the Lord for a while, but is just getting back in church and serious about God. This past week we had him over for his first taste of Mexican food. Needless, to say, he was one happy camper!

0DF2D7E4-D68B-474E-803A-8F66DBB66A79PLEASE PRAY FOR LI HUANG’S SPIRITUAL GROWTH!

The brief video below is one of the over 500 tribal groups that can be found in the country of China. While out for a walk, I had a chance to take a few pictures of them, as well as this short video.

As always, my wife and I want to thank you for your consistent financial support and your continual prayers for us, our teams in Southeast Asia, and the work here in China!

Johnny and Denise

“I believe that in each generation God has called enough men and women to evangelize all the yet unreached tribes of the earth. It is not God who does not call. It is man who will not respond!” ― Isobel Kuhn

October 9, 2017

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A few days ago, was the fourth anniversary of the day that my brother, Pastor Joe Esposito, was hospitalized. Over the past four years, I have spent literally dozens, possibly hundreds, of hours with my brother either in his hospital room or via FaceTime from Asia. It has been a miracle to see how far he has come thus far, but he’s still hospitalized, and he and his dear wife Mary, could still use your prayers. We are grateful for all God could accomplish in the past, and continues to accomplish to this day, through his life and ministry. We are also grateful for Pastor Steve Meyers, the staff at Pacific Baptist Church, Pacific Baptist Bible College, and Pacific Baptist School, along with missionaries in China, Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand who are doing their part to “Keep the Dream Alive.”

PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR PASTOR JOE AND HIS WIFE MARY!

As most of you now, my wife and I returned to the States for three weeks to be with our son Joshua and our daughter-n-law Hannah. Our granddaughter Hope died in the womb a few hours before birth. Denise and I were in the States for 23 days and I did Hope’s funeral service. It was the most difficult thing I have done in 35 years of ministry!

IMG_1012PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR JOSHUA AND HANNAH DURING THIS TIME!

While in the States, along with trying to be a blessing to Josh and Hannah and their four children, I also had the opportunity to preach/teach for Pacific Baptist Church of Long Beach (11 times), Pacific Baptist Church of Monterey Park (5 times), Pacific Baptist School (4 times), and teach four days of a Missions’ Intensive at Pacific Baptist Bible College, as well as preach in college chapel three times. The vast majority of these messages were during PBCLB and PBCMP’s Missions Conference!

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IMG_1015PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL WATER THE SEEDS THAT WERE SOWN DURING OUR THREE WEEKS IN THE STATES!

We Also Covet Your Prayers for the Following:

(1) Please continue to pray that we will learn the language well enough to be able to get around and function while we are here in China!

(2) Please continue to pray for God’s favor and blessings upon the church and the missionaries (Dick and Trish) that we are presently working alongside of in China!

(3) Please continue to pray that God will open doors of ministry here in this city, throughout the country, and throughout Asia in the coming days, weeks, and months!

(4) Please continue to pray for Barry and Joy to get more involved with the things of the Lord!

(5) Please continue to pray for our Tuesday meetings to continue to go well and lead to many people eventually getting saved, discipled, and churches planted!

(6) Please pray for our ministry trip this week in Laos as we challenge our team (who are doing a fantastic job) to go forward and even further for God!

(7) Please pray for Peng Ling Mei (health) and her husband Huang (salvation)!

Once again, Denise and I want to thank you all for your continual and consistent prayers, as well as your faithful financial support. All that we are able to do is simply by God’s grace and because of the goodness and generosity of God’s people.

Johnny and Denise Esposito

“The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions. The nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we become.”— Missionary, Henry Martyn

September 5, 2017

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Many of you know that a few days ago, my son Joshua and his wife Hannah’s baby, Hope, died and went to heaven. Needless to say, this is a difficult time for the two of them, for their four other children, and for the rest of the family, including grandpa and grandma! We will be flying to the States for the Memorial service and to be with them for a few weeks. We definitely covet your prayers for Joshua, Hannah and the children at this time. The phrase “Grateful for the HOPE of heaven” has taken on an added meaning to us because of our granddaughter Hope’s passing!

PLEASE PRAY FOR JOSHUA, HANNAH, AND THE CHILDREN DURING THIS TIME! 

I just returned from an eight-day ministry trip in Indonesia with Brother Tomlinson and his son-n-law Matt. We had a wonderful time! It’s amazing what God is doing in this country that is 83% Muslim. We were in four different churches and two different Bible Colleges. And, as always, we went to be a blessing, but the Indonesian people were a far greater blessing to us than we to them. God really is doing something special in this, the largest Muslim country in the world. I had the privilege to preach the last service before we left Indonesia. Four adults made professions of faith!

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It’s good to be back in China! We had a great time of discipleship training last week. God seems to be moving in hearts already. Can’t wait until our next meeting. Of course, we won’t meet with them for a few weeks because we will be in the States. It was a blessing to have two doctors (Barry and Joy) sit in with us. Lord willing, they will be eating over our house soon. I think they are bringing a couple more doctors with them!


I had the privilege to preach for last week’s midweek service (“Mistakes Parents Make”) and our Sunday service (“Biblical Stewardship”). One thing about living and serving in this part of the world, it isn’t long before you find out that these people are just like our folks back home and have the same struggles. The response to both messages was great!

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It was a blessing for my wife to speak for a group of ladies here in China this past week. Another missionary here in the city, who I have preached for in the past, invited her to speak and she had a wonderful time, and I am sure she was a blessing. While my wife was teaching and fellowshipping with the ladies, the missionary and I, along with his son, had a wonderful meal and great fellowship at a Muslim restaurant down the street!

It was a real joy to be able to have Lee and his wife Yang Shou (pictured below) over our house for a time of food, fun (UNO), and fellowship. This couple has suffered much in recent days in the loss of their child. It was great to see Yang Shou back in a church service this past Sunday. I know it was difficult for her, but she worshipped the Lord with the rest of her brothers and sisters in Christ!

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We have made a new friendship with a lady who is actually a member of the church we are assisting, but she hasn’t been in church for a while. Her name is Peng Ling Mei (pictured below) and she is dying of cancer. As soon as we found out that she is in a hospital not far from our apartment, we have made it a habit of going to visit her and her husband just about everyday. We even bought her a small stuffed puppy that she has named Chocolate. Peng Ling Mei is saved and she’s on her way to heaven, her husband Huang is not. Please pray for her husband’s salvation. And pray for a miracle in her life!

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In a previous post we mentioned Maggie and have asked you to pray for her salvation. We were supposed to get together for supper at her house this week, but because we are going back to the States, it had to be rescheduled. Yet, she insisted on coming by and visiting with us before we left. We had a wonderful time. Please pray for Maggie’s (pictured below) salvation!

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What a blessing to be able to preach in two communist countries and one Muslim country all in a matter of two months. Who would have thought that God could use an old sinner like me to go to these dark and difficult places to make a spiritual dent for His glory and the good of others. Not me, that’s for sure!

We Covet Your Prayers for the Following:

(1) Please pray that we will learn the language enough to be able to get around and function.

(2) Please pray for God’s favor and blessings upon the church and the missionaries (Dick and Trish) that we are presently working alongside of

(3) Please pray that God will open doors of ministry here in this city, throughout the country, and throughout Asia in the coming days, weeks, and months.

(4) Please pray for Barry and Joy to get more involved with the things of the Lord!

(5) Please pray for our Tuesday meetings to continue to go well and lead to many people eventually getting saved, discipled, and churches planted!

(6) Please pray for our upcoming trip to Laos (October)!

(7) Please pray for Peng Ling Mei (health) and her husband Huang (salvation)!

(8) Please pray for Maggie’s salvation!

(9) Please pray for future laborers, not only from Pacific Baptist Church of Long Beach, but from all over the world, to come to this needy part of the world!

My wife and I want to thank you for your prayers and financial support!

Just doing what we can to keep the dream alive,

Johnny and Denise Esposito

August 11, 2017

IMG_0967That look you get when someone starts a conversation with you in Mandarin and you have absolutely no idea what they are saying, but they think you do!

After nearly a month here, my wife and I are starting to get a adjusted to our new “home” in China. Unlike our time serving in the countries of Laos and Cambodia we really don’t have a whole lot of interaction with folks who can speak any English, other than a handful of folks who attend the church we are working with, (who just so happen to speak English), and two ladies who work at a local restaurant/store near our apartment. We have definitely had a some very interesting experiences trying to communicate with folks. Between funny experiences on the street, in restaurants, our first experience riding the bus alone, and having to pay for the same hat twice at Walmart, we have a boatload of funny, and at times, embarrassing, “China Experiences” that we could share! 

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IMG_0961PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR OUR TRANSITION HERE IN CHINA! 

The summer months bring a unique experience here where we are located. There happen to be a few camps going on, and we have had the opportunity to meet some of the folks putting on the camps. It was a real blessing to meet men from the USA, along with a national who is from here. They were conducting, of all things, a Flag Football Camp. In fact, the group from the USA conducted 11 different camps in 11 different cities over a one month period. I also had the opportunity to meet another group that was conducting an English Camp. They specifically asked me not to post any pictures. Of course, both of these groups were using the camps as a platform to share the love of Christ to the Chinese people.

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Our church, along with another church, worked together to hold a camp in the southern part of our province. I believe there were over 230 young people attending the Camp. While I was not there, quite a few of our folks were there, and I heard really good reports!

IMG_0956PLEASE PRAY FOR THE SEEDS THAT WERE SOWN IN THE VARIOUS CAMPS TO BRING FORTH FRUIT UNTO EVERLASTING LIFE!

It was a blessing to meet “John,” well, that’s his English name. He’s 22-years old, from Afghanistan, and is here in the country learning Mandarin for one reason. So, he could go back home and work alongside missionaries from China who are trying to reach the Afghan people.

IMG_0957PLEASE PRAY FOR JOHN AND OTHERS LIKE HIM WHO ARE BEING TRAINED TO GO TO THE DARK, DIFFICULT, AND OFTEN DANGEROUS PLACES IN THE 1040 WINDOW WITH THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST!

I have had the opportunity and privilege to preach/teach a few times since arriving back in the country. As always, it has been a blessing to see the attentiveness and responsiveness of our folks here. Our folks seem to have a real desire to grow in the love and service for Christ!

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IMG_0968PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE MY PREACHING AND TEACHING TO SAVE SOULS AND STIR THE HEARTS OF HIS PEOPLE HERE IN THIS COUNTRY!

In our last Update, I mentioned meeting a young lady named Maggie who spoke English. She was the first person that I had a chance to meet in public who spoke English. My wife and I invited her and her husband over for a meal. Praise the Lord, she came. But she didn’t come alone. She came with four other adults and four children. We had a great time and my wife cooked up a wonderful meal for the eleven of us. Lord willing, this will be the beginning of a new relationship that will allow us to share the Gospel with folks who don’t know Jesus!

IMG_0960PLEASE PRAY FOR THE SALVATION OF JACK, MAGGIE, AND THE OTHERS WHO WE HAD THE PRIVILEGE OF HAVING OVER TO EAT AT OUR APARTMENT RECENTLY!

It was a real blessing to be able to teach a group of our teens recently during the 9:00 AM hour on Sunday. One of the most “different” things here in China compared to Southeast Asia is how few young people there seem to be compared to the older generation. You can see this on the streets, as well as in the church. So, we are looking forward to doing what we can to influence the “Next Generation” at our church!

IMG_0966PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE US TO BE A BLESSING TO OUR YOUNG PEOPLE AND THAT WE WOULD REACH MORE YOUNG PEOPLE!

While we have limitations here because of not knowing the language and various restrictions, one thing that my wife and I can do is to open up our home to those who know the Lord and those who do not know the Lord. Hospitality matters, it does makes a difference, and the good thing about it is anyone can do it. It’s been a joy to have three groups of people over our apartment just this past week alone. Not only did we have the unsaved folks over, as mentioned above, but it has been a blessing to have some fellow Christians and co-laborers over for food and fellowship. So very grateful for my wife’s servant spirit!

IMG_0965PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE OUR APARTMENT TO BE A PLACE WHERE THE LOVE OF CHRIST CAN TOUCH THE LOST AND SAVED ALIKE!

As I mentioned recently, in my “Over a Cup of Coffee in  China,” it was a real blessing to have the opportunity and privilege to teach for two hours on discipleship, and why we need to start new small groups around the city. I will teach again next week, and again the week after I return from Indonesia. Lord willing, we will meet at our place weekly, and a few of us will rotate in teaching and on various topics.

Arriving on the field at the age of 56, and then arriving in China at the age of 60, there’s always that nagging voice within that speaks to you, asking, “What are you going to be able to do for Christ in this place and at your age?”

GOOD QUESTION! 🙂

IMG_6784.JPGI am grateful that the Lord has seen fit to use us in a small way in such a needy part of the world. Of course, it’s an honor and a privilege to serve Christ and the cause of Christ anywhere, and at anytime, but there’s just something very sweet about knowing you are making a small dent where the need is so great.

If God can use us to inspire and possibly set a fire in the hearts of a few young missionaries, with long lives ahead of them, and a handful of nationals who know the language, the culture, and the hearts of their people, it will be worth it all!

Both Denise and I want to thank you for your faithful financial support and your continual prayers for our ministry here in Asia. We couldn’t be here without your labor of love!

Johnny and Denise

“If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him.” — C.T. Studd

July 20

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The picture above is a huge statue of Buddha that oversees one of the villages in the mountains of Northern Thailand. The country of Thailand is 98% Buddhist and they desperately need the Lord!

Before being hospitalized, my brother, Pastor Joe, had a desire to reach not only Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand, but Myanmar (formerly known as Burma), and the country of China. His desire was to get a team as close as possible to the Golden Triangle that would be used to train nationals to reach all of these countries for Christ. Our trip to spend time with the Chang’s and Sutrick’s brought back so many wonderful memories and emotions!

Our seven-day trip to the northern part of Thailand was a blessing. It was a real joy to be able to spend quality time with Tom and Sue Sutrick. They are amazing people to say the least. They were simply retired “laymen” who, after 20 something years of working with the Hmong refugees in Wisconsin, became burdened for the Hmong people of Thailand and a “Creative Access” nation. They packed up their basic necessities and moved to Northern Thailand and became a part of our team sent out of Pacific Baptist Church. They have now been living in a village up in the mountains of Thailand for the past six years!

IMG_0926PLEASE PRAY FOR TOM AND SUE SUTRICK AS THEY CONTINUE TO SERVE THE HMONG PEOPLE IN THAILAND!

While in Chiang Khong we had the chance to go soul-winning on three different days and preach for the Sunday services of Siam Baptist Church, as well as their Midweek service. In addition, I had the opportunity to teach for three days and three nights for their church workers and a handful of Hmong church leaders from across the border from a “Creative Access” nation. And, of course, I had a wonderful time playing with the Hmong children!

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IMG_0932PLEASE PRAY FOR THE SIAM BAPTIST CHURCH FAMILY AND THE DIFFERENT MEN AND WOMEN WHO CAME FOR THE INSTRUCTION ON THE GREAT COMMISSION AND DISCIPLESHIP!

One of the special blessings I had, was the opportunity to meet up with a man who I had witnessed to six years ago. While Tom and I were sharing the Gospel with a husband and wife he just popped out of nowhere. Here’s the kicker, he came up to me and said, “I remember you told me Jesus was knocking on the door of my heart. I still haven’t let him in.” I had the opportunity to share the Gospel with him once again.

IMG_0934PLEASE PRAY FOR THE MANY OTHERS WE HAD THE CHANCE TO SHARE THE GOSPEL WITH WHILE SOUL-WINNING IN THE VILLAGES!

It was also a blessing to be able to spend some time with Jay Chang. Jay is a former Hmong refugee that was reached on my brother’s bus route while my brother and I were still students attending Bible college. Jay and Tom, along with their wives, started Siam Baptist church about six years ago. Tom now oversees the church, while Jay has since branched out and is doing the work of an evangelist going from one Hmong village to another. He is also overseeing two small Hmong congregations that do not have a pastor and teaching a few days every other week in one of the villages. We are grateful for his zeal for the Lord and for his interpreting for me most of the week in Northern Thailand!

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IMG_0928PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR JAY AND THE WORK HE IS DOING AMONG THE HMONG IN THAILAND, LAOS, AND VIETNAM!

Denise and I arrived in China, our new home on Friday, August 14. And, all I can say is, “We aren’t in Kansas anymore!” 🙂 The city we now call home (at least for awhile) has about seven million people, and while there are definitely foreigners here, we haven’t seen many in the part of town where we live. In fact, the first week we were in town, I saw none, Denise claims she saw two older ladies walking down the street. I personally think that was just some wishful thinking. 🙂 I did finally meet a young Chinese lady named Maggie who spoke some English. I thought I was in heaven!

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As we mentioned previously we will be working alongside of Dick and his wife (picture below blurred for security reasons). They are longtime missionaries in both Hong Kong and Mainland China. God has been using them and their people to do an amazing work here. We look forward to learning from them and assisting them here for a season.

IMG_0943PLEASE ADD TO YOUR PRAYER LIST OUR NEW CO-LABORERS IN THE MINISTRY DICK AND TRISH! 

It was a blessing to be able to spend some time with some of the church folks, and quite a few teenagers, both saved and unsaved, on the second day we were in town. I had a chance to be able to speak to them. I taught them how to use the Wordless Book. One young teenage girl named Emily trusted Jesus after we shared the presentation!

IMG_0937PLEASE PRAY FOR EMILY’S SPIRITUAL GROWTH!

Our first Sunday here the auditorium was packed to overflowing. Not only was the main auditorium packed, so were the two overflow sections. It is really amazing to see what God is doing among the Chinese people. And, we look forward to seeing what God has in store for the future!

IMG_0939PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL CONTINUE TO BLESS THE WORK HERE IN CHINA AND DO WHAT ONLY HE CAN DO THROUGH HIS PEOPLE HERE!

As always, my wife and I want to thank you for your consistent prayers and financial support. We could never do what God has called us to do without Him and you. Thank you for partnering with us in this worthy endeavor!

Johnny and Denise

“If I had 1,000 lives, I’d give them for China.” – Hudson Taylor

July 7, 2017

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Our last four days in the “Creative Access” nation were busy and blessed. I had the opportunity to teach four more days of Bible Institute for our team, which had as many as 28 in attendance. Of that number, eleven were church leaders from a few villages five hours away. It was a blessing to teach these men. I also had the privilege to preach for our team’s Midweek service and my wife had a chance to sub for her old English class!

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Just before leaving the country my wife and I were joined by Brother Dwight Tomlinson and his wife Gayle. The Tomlinson’s are longtime friends and fellow-laborers in this part of the world. Brother Tomlinson came to meet with a few of the national pastors supported by Barnabas1040. He also had the opportunity to preach and teach while here in the country!

While taking a walk, Brother Tomlinson and I had the opportunity to meet a few Monks and carry on a conversation with them. One of the Monks was a young man named Kun, he’s been a Monk for four years now. He speaks English well and wants to continue learning. I offered to pay his way for a term at the school our team operates. Please pray that he will attend the school, hear the Gospel, and trust Jesus as his Savior!

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IMG_0898PLEASE PRAY THAT OUR TIME IN THE “CREATIVE ACCESS” NATION WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT THAT REMAINS!

Our first week in Thailand (Bangkok and Mae Sot) were spent with our dear friends Dwight and Gayle Tomlinson. The four of us spent time with missionaries Brother Montes, Brother Badua, and Brother Angeles, along with a handful of Burmese national pastors. Brother Tomlinson and I had the opportunity to preach for three Burmese congregations. Two of these congregations were on the Thai side of the border and one was on the Myanmar side of the border. They were all a blessing, but it was a real joy to preach for the congregation in Myanmar. As Brother Tomlinson noted, these believers were James 2:5 Christians!

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IMG_0904PLEASE PRAY THAT OUR TIME WITH DWIGHT AND GAYLE TOMLINSON, THESE MISSIONARIES, AND NATIONAL PASTORS WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT THAT REMAINS!

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The picture above is Bangkok, Thailand. This is a city of 10-12 million people. Somewhere between 95-98 percent of the people in this city and the country of Thailand are Buddhist people who desperately need the Lord!

PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL CONTINUE TO SEND LABORERS TO THIS CITY AND THIS PART OF THE WORLD!

My wife and I thank you for your prayers and faithful financial support. Please pray for our last week of this six-week ministry trip in Southeast Asia prior to returning to China. We are in Chiang Khong, Thailand and look forward to much opportunity to serve with our team sent out of Pacific Baptist Church!

Johnny and Denise Esposito

“Some wish to live within the sound of a chapel bell; I wish to run a rescue mission within a yard of hell.” — Missionary C.T. Studd

 

 

June 26, 2017

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As most of you know, my wife and I served in a “Creative Access” country for 17 months. We love the country and we love the people. After spending ten wonderful days in Cambodia we flew into the capital city where we once lived. In this city you will find over 300 Buddhist temples like the one pictured above. Of course, the vast majority of them are much bigger than the one above. This temple, along with two others, were all within one block from where my wife and I used to live!

On Friday, which was our first full day in the country, I taught a two-hour session on “Characteristics of a Spiritual Leader” for our team and some of the nationals they are seeing raised up as spiritual leaders in the ministry. It was a great time. Immediately after the teaching, we went for a nice meal and some fellowship!

IMG_0862PLEASE PRAY FOR KOUMALY, DARATH AND THE REST OF OUR TEAM IN THIS COUNTRY AS GOD USES THEM IN A DIFFICULT FIELD TO REACH MANY FOR CHRIST!

Saturday and Sunday were busy and blessed. I had the opportunity and privilege to preach four times for a Youth Rally. We had well over 100 young people in attendance with three different churches and one village ministry attending the six services.

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IMG_0861PLEASE PRAY THAT THE SEEDS SOWN DURING THIS TWO-DAY YOUTH RALLY WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT – FRUIT THAT REMAINS!

One of the many blessings during the two-day Youth Rally was to be able to spend some time with Lee. He is an Evangelist in the country and has been preaching for 17 years. He has no salary. He has no support. He, his wife, and children live in a shack. He lives by faith and ministers only with the scriptures and the Spirit of God. I was humbled, convicted, and challenged to be able to spend time with him and share the platform with him. Needless to say, it was a very humbling experience!

IMG_0859PLEASE PRAY FOR LEE AND OTHER NATIONAL PREACHERS WHO ARE DOING WHAT THEY CAN, WITH LIMITED RESOURCES, TO MAKE AN IMPACT IN THEIR COUNTRY!

Another one of the many blessings during the Youth Rally was to see how much one young Hmong man (Kong), who celebrated his two-year spiritual birthday during the rally, has grown in the Lord, and to see some of the fruit from a village ministry he started about a year ago. On a weekly basis, he will have over 100 children, teens, and adults attend a Friday evening Bible study. There were probably somewhere between 40-50 of his teens and children at the Youth Rally. From what I understand only one of them was saved before he started the ministry. Not bad for a year’s work!

IMG_0858PLEASE PRAY FOR KONG AND FOR THESE MANY YOUNG PEOPLE AS THEY GROW IN THEIR FAITH. PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THEM TO REACH THEIR OWN PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!

One of the tremendous blessings for my wife and I every time we return to this country to minister, is to be able to spend some time with the men and women we worked with while residing here. Every time I return here I will take a week and teach a few of the local pastors and future pastors that are being trained for the ministry. Monday – Thursday, I spent three hours each day teaching the group below, as well as preaching for them on Thursday evening and Sunday morning.

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While preaching for Pastor Kampai and teaching in the Bible Institute, it was a joy to get to know Phat. He is 35-years old and spent 10 years in  prison. While in prison he trusted Christ. He is now one of the Bible Institute students, loves Jesus, and is preparing for ministry!

IMG_0870PLEASE PRAY FOR THESE THREE PASTORS, THE YOUNG MEN THEY ARE TRAINING, AND THE CHURCHES THEY ARE LEADING. PRAY THAT THEY WILL MAKE A HUGE IMPACT IN THIS COUNTRY FOR CHRIST AND THE CAUSE OF CHRIST!

Our group from Pacific Baptist Church not only spent a week in Cambodia and had a boatload of ministry opportunities, including teaching in a school, but they arrived in this “Creative Access” nation a few days after my wife and I arrived. It was a blessing for my wife and me to be able to spend a some time with them, not only in Cambodia, but here in this country also. I was thankful to have the opportunity to challenge them on “Awakening to the Needs in this Part of the World,” in a special midweek service for foreigners only here in this country. 🙂 So thankful that my brother Pastor Joe, a few years prior to being hospitalized, got a vision of sending our young people to Southeast Asia every year!

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IMG_0865PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THIS TRIP TO STIR THE HEARTS OF THESE COLLEGE AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS FROM PACIFIC BAPTIST CHURCH!

While the vast majority of our group from Long Beach came straight over from Cambodia to this “Creative Access” nation, seven of our young men, including two of my nephews, first stopped over in Thailand to be with our team there. They were a tremendous blessing to the team located in the northern part of Thailand and working with the Hmong people. Of course, Tom and Sue Sutrick, along with their people, were a great inspiration to our young men.

IMG_0866PLEASE PRAY FOR GOD TO USE THIS TRIP TO THAILAND STIR THE HEARTS OF THESE SEVEN MEN FROM LONG BEACH. PRAY THAT BECAUSE OF THIS TRIP THEY WILL NEVER BE THE SAME!

My wife and I also had the opportunity to be with three different churches here in the capital city. Two of the churches are overseen by dear friends of ours, missionaries from the Philippines, and the other is pastored by a very dear friend, who is a national. I have had the opportunity to preach for him, I am sure, about 15-20 times, along with teach in his Bible Institute countless times over the past five years. What a wonderful week it was! It was such a blessing to be able to spend time with Lao, Hmong, Khmu, Bru, and Filipino people who love the Lord Jesus and are serving Him faithfully in a difficult country. The pictures below are from the three different Sunday services!

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IMG_0881PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE ALL OF THESE DIFFERENT MEETINGS TO STIR THESE FOLKS TO REACH THEIR PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!

After one of the Bible Institute sessions, and one of the services,  I asked a handful of folks the name of their home villages, how many households or families are in the villages, and how many households “profess to be Christian.” The totals are heartbreaking to say the least: 4,000 families or households. Only 66 “profess to be Christian.” If my calculations are correct that’s about 1.5 percent of the population in these villages that “profess to be Christian.”

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While my wife and I were taking a walk, we saw this poster below. My initial thought was simple: We can get Coke, Pepsi, and Christian Aguilera to come to countries like this in the 10/40 Window, why can’t we get missionaries to come?

IMG_0876PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL SEND MEN AND WOMEN TO THIS COUNTRY, AND OTHERS LIKE IT IN THE 10/40 WINDOW, TO BRING THE LIGHT, LIFE, AND LOVE OF JESUS!  

My wife and I thank you for your prayers, for your faithful financial support, and your faithful service for our King.

Johnny and Denise Esposito

“In the vast plain to the north I have sometimes seen, in the morning sun, the smoke of a thousand villages where no missionary has ever been.” – MISSIONARY ROBERT MOFFAT

June 12, 2017

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It’s good to be back in Asia!

One sure sign that we are back in Asia is the flip flops and sandals outside the door. The picture above is outside the door of our Steung Meanchey church plant about a half an hour before a service that I was privileged to preach for.

Our trip back to Asia was smooth and non-eventful. Praise the Lord for that. My wife and I stopped over in China where we will be residing and serving (to drop off a few of our suitcases), had the opportunity to speak two times for our new home church, and had some wonderful fellowship.

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Three of the special blessings of our few days on the Mainland of China were to be able to spend time with missionary (Dick and his wife Trish), to spend time fellowshipping with Li and his wife, and to, once again, see an elderly lady we met about a year ago. Dick and his wife have been faithfully serving the Lord for over 30 years, and most this time was either in Hong Kong or Mainland China. They are great folks!

Li was saved about ten years ago. The man who led him to Christ, while he was still a student studying in the University, came to the country at the age of sixty. Li is now serving the Lord full-time. Thank God for men and women who are willing to come to this part of the world. The elderly lady pictured below is a real source of blessing. We met her last year when I came here to preach for a Leadership Conference. At the time, she was very ill and in the hospital. She visited the church for the first time the following Sunday, trusted Christ, and is now faithfully attending the church. Praise the Lord!

IMG_0842PLEASE PRAY FOR THE BELIEVERS IN CHINA AND OUR NEW MINISTRY IN THE COUNTRY!

Our first few days back in Southeast Asia, specifically Cambodia, were a tremendous blessing. You can imagine all the emotions flooding our souls as we arrived back in the country where we resided and served for nearly two years. By God’s grace, our team in Cambodia is doing an amazing job. On our first full day in the country, it was a tremendous blessing to be able to go soul-winning in Stueng Meanchey with our Bible college guys, as well as preach for their Midweek service. I also had the chance to go soul-winning with Man. I spent nearly a year-and-a-half meeting with Man and his brother Vannak weekly and nearly two years as their soul-winning partners (Man on Saturdays, Vannak on Tuesdays and Sundays). So many wonderful memories. Man and Vannak love Jesus, love their people, and are zealous soul-winners!

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IMG_0844PLEASE PRAY FOR THE DEAR PEOPLE IN STEUNG MEANCHEY, AS WELL AS MAN AND KOSAL AND THEIR FAMILIES AS THEY CONTINUE TO LEAD THIS MINISTRY! 

It was also a blessing to be able to spend some quality time with different individuals. When I was still here in the country, Pastor Tho, my wife and I would do a weekly Bible study with Abraham and his wife Srey Mohm. Pastor Tho is a Tuk-tuk driver to support his family. It was a blessing to spend some time with him and try to be a blessing to him and his family. It was also a blessing to be able to take a few of our Bible college girls, our niece (Sue), and Adrian out for a meal. These young college girls love Jesus and are desiring that God will use them to reach their people for Christ.

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IMG_0845PLEASE PRAY FOR PASTOR THO AND HIS FAMILY, AS WELL AS THE CHURCH THAT THEY LEAD!

It is always a blessing to be with our Psa Thrict church plant. While we were serving here in Cambodia for nearly two years one of my favorite places to serve was with our Cham folks (former Muslim) in Psa Thrict. It was always a blessing to go soul-winning with them, teach the men, and then preach/teach for their Midweek service.  It was a real joy to spend the day with these dear folks last Thursday. The time of visitation, teaching the men, and preaching for the Midweek service, as always, was a real blessing!

IMG_0848PLEASE PRAY FOR OUR CHURCH PLANT IN PSA THRICT, AS WELL AS FOR SAN AND VANNAK AS THEY LEAD THIS WONDERFUL MINISTRY! 

On Friday, we had an all-day Staff and Worker’s Training. I opened the day with a session on “Joy in Fellowship with the Lord.” This was basically a session encouraging our folks to walk with God. I also closed with a 20 minute testimony of what we will be doing, Lord willing, in China. One of the hi-lights of the training sessions was to be able to spend some time with Chaay and his wife. While serving in Cambodia, I had the privilege to meet with and disciple Chaay for about a year. As faithful members of the church in Psa Thrict, God is using him and his wife in a mighty way!

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IMG_0851PLEASE PRAY FOR THESE MEN AND WOMEN, YOUNG AND OLD ALIKE, WHO ARE WORKING THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY OF CAMBODIA TO REACH PEOPLE FOR CHRIST! 

Of course, it is always a blessing to be able to go soul-winning in Cambodia. The people are so open to hear the Gospel. On Saturday, my old soul-winning buddy, Vannak and I had the opportunity to share the Gospel with six adults, as well as visit a home to encourage a few of our teen girls in their walk with Christ!

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One of the many blessings of being back in Cambodia is the opportunity to spend some quality time with some of our dear fellow-laborers from our days of living and serving here in Cambodia. After soul-winning, it was nice to be able to go out to lunch with Vannak, Man, Kosal, Hem, and Adrian. I had the opportunity to spend time discipling Kosal for almost two years while here in the country and Vannak and Man for about a year-and-a-half.

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In Cambodia, with our team, Sunday is a really full day. Four different church plants  and various village ministries conduct services. Children, teens, and adults have the opportunity to worship God and hear the word of God preached. As always, the service in Phnom was absolutely packed to overflowing. In fact, even the overflow section was full. Just before the service started I had a few moments with Abigail. Abigail is the daughter of Kosal and Phalley. Kosal, in many ways, is like a son to me. I had the opportunity to disciple him for nearly two years while serving here in Cambodia. We are thankful for how God is using him and his wife!

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On Sunday evening, the mother church in Phnom Penh has various small groups. This past Sunday, I had the privilege to speak for the Married Couple’s Group. I spoke on the topic, “Mistakes Parents Often Make.” They had a great crowd and as always, they had a lot of fun!

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My wife and I thank you for praying for our trip back to Asia and this six-week ministry trip prior to returning back to our new home in China. And, of course, we thank you for your faithful financial support of our ministry. We couldn’t be here without your prayers and support!

Johnny and Denise Esposito

“Is not the commission of our Lord still binding upon us? Can we not do more than now we are doing?” — William Carey

 

 

 

 

May 29, 2017

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Greetings in Christ! My wife and I are so grateful for your faithful prayers and your continual support of our ministry in the 10/40 Window!

The other evening, while soul-winning with folks from Pacific Baptist Church, I had the chance to meet Kevin (pictured above). He’s from Guangzhou, China. He came to America at the age of 35 and soon thereafter trusted Christ as his Savior. He told me that he had never heard about Jesus until he moved to America, and he said, “China needs God!”

Speaking of China and their need for God, in just a few days, my wife and I head back to Asia. We are so looking forward to “getting back in the saddle” once again. We arrive in China, where we will be residing and serving, on June 2. We will be in China four days only before heading on a six-week trip to Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Myanmar to connect with our teams sent out of Pacific Baptist Church, as well as with a handful of other churches that we have, over the past few years, built relationships. I will be preaching in 7-8 churches during this period, teaching in three, possibly four Bible Institutes, and meeting some potential National Pastors to be supported by Barnabas 1040.

PLEASE PRAY FOR THIS TIME OF TRANSITION FOR MY WIFE AND ME, AS WELL AS THE SIX WEEK MINISTRY TRIP!

My wife and I are so excited about returning to Asia. We especially look forward to visiting the countries of Cambodia and Laos, where we served for the past four years. One of the many things we will be doing during this time will be teaching two sessions for our team in Cambodia and their annual Staff/Worker’s Training. Last year’s training sessions were a blessing. I was told we will have 60 or more Staff/Workers in these sessions. Below you will see a picture from last year’s training in Phnom Penh.

IMG_3596PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL CONTINUE TO BLESS THESE WORKERS, THE MINISTRIES THEY ARE INVOLVED WITH, AND THE STAFF/WORKER’S TRAINING SESSIONS!

Over the past two weeks, our last two weeks in the country, we have been primarily at our home church in Long Beach. I had the opportunity to preach four times for Pacific Baptist Church, including once for the Spanish Ministry and once for the Khmer Ministry. I taught two different Sunday school classes, as well preached twice for our school’s “Revival Fires” End of the Year Conference, and even taught the Juniors and Senior boys in the Christian Manhood Class. It was also a special blessing to be able to take a dear friend and missionary to China out to lunch after the Sunday morning service. Their ministry has been going through the fire over the past six months!

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IMG_0831In addition to being with Pacific Baptist Church Long Beach, my wife and I had the opportunity to be with Faith Baptist Church of Canoga Park (Pastor Tim Rasmussen) and Pacific Baptist Church of Monterey Park (Pastor Kyle Beck). Funny how life works. Pastor Rasmussen and I attended Bible college together in the early 1980s and Pastor Beck was one of my students at Pacific Baptist Bible College. Time flies when you are serving Jesus. Both of these men and their ministries are being used greatly by God!

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IMG_0838PLEASE PRAY FOR PBC OF MONTEREY PARK AS THEY CONTINUE TO REACH OUT TO THE EAST LOS ANGELES AREA NOW AS AN INDIGENOUS CHURCH!

As many of you know, as teenagers, my brother (Pastor Joe), Pastor Steve Meyers, and I grew up in Long Beach. Pastor Joe and Pastor Meyers were saved in Long Beach. And, of course, we all served together at Pacific Baptist Church in Long Beach for many years. My wife and I went out and did some reminiscing yesterday. The pictures below are of the apartment complex Pastor Meyers, Pastor Joe Esposito, and I lived in as unsaved teenagers (lower right hand corner). The apartment building Pastor Joe and I, along with two converts of mine, lived in as single adults (lower left hand corner). This apartment was often referred to as “The Jesus Apartment.”  In the upper right hand corner is a picture of the first church (non-Catholic) I ever attended and heard the Gospel as a 17-year old young man. And, in the upper left hand corner is a picture of the first Independent Baptist church that I ever attended.

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Upon returning to China in early July, we will begin working with and assisting a veteran missionary [name of city and missionary will be left unnamed for security purposes] in discipling nationals, starting a Bible Institute, and possibly, a Bible College with the purpose of training Chinese Nationals for future ministry in China and other areas in the 10/40 Window, as well as planting some new house churches!

My wife and I are looking forward to serving in China. The city we will be serving in is found in one of the largest of China’s provinces. This province is home to over 45 million people. At least 25 of the 56 different people groups found in the country of China reside in this province. Less than two percent of the population in this province profess to be “Christian.” There are at least six cities in this province with a population of over 3 million people. This province borders four other provinces in China, three other “Restricted” or “Creative Access” nations, and is within striking distance of another five of the most difficult countries in the world to reach with the Gospel!

PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE US TO MAKE A SPIRITUAL DENT IN THIS PART OF CHINA!

ADDITIONAL PRAYER REQUESTS:

  • Please pray for traveling mercies, the adjustment to a new country (China), and for the preaching/teaching opportunities in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and of course, China, as my wife and I head back to Asia in three weeks.
  • Please pray for our teams in Cambodia, Laos, and Thailand.
  • Please pray for the ministry that we will be working with in China.
  • Please pray for the men and women who are presently praying about serving in China.

The picture below is one of our sweet young ladies in Cambodia. Her name is Linda. She was reached through our Children’s Ministry and is now a faithful worker in our ministry in Cambodia. This picture was taken at our Family Camp (over 175 of the folks from our various churches in Cambodia were blessed to attend). The picture is a good reminder that the light of Christ is so desperately needed everywhere, but even more so in the darkest areas of our world!

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Once again, my wife and I thank you for your faithful prayers and financial support. We do what we do only because of God’s grace and your faithfulness!

Johnny and Denise