Ministry preparation with CLI’s free online classes will help me immensely to be equipped in the area of bible knowledge, Christian history, evangelism, and all the things that are essential as a church leader. Taking these free training courses online allows me to allot my time between studying, working, and ministry preparation. I can focus on working towards paying off student loans without having to worry about school fees. CLI is providing a wonderful opportunity and is a huge blessing to me. I am also very blessed to have the prayer support and encouragement of my local church as well as brothers and sisters from all over the world.
My name is Ana Chen and I am currently living in Pennsylvania, USA. My family is originally from FuJian, China. We all made our way to America at different times: Dad left China in 1989 (three months after I was born). Mom left in 1993 when I was four years old. And finally my sister and I joined my parents in 1995. In an attempt to help us transition better, my parents enrolled my sister and I into an all Chinese Catholic school where we were taught the basics of Catholicism. The idea of religion never peaked my interest, especially since my parents were Buddhists. Throughout the years many people tried to tell me and my sister about God, who was saved during a trip to Greece. I was apathetic to any faith and considered myself a “spiritual atheist.” Honestly, I didn’t even know what that meant.
My walk with the Lord began three years ago in South Korea where I was studying as an exchange student. Out of curiosity I attended church service at a really well-known church in Kangnam, Seoul. It was during an invitation to prayer that I spoke the words of repentance and received the truth of Jesus. I began to seek out answers to my millions of questions and was looking for the next steps in this walk with God. When I returned home to the US, I immediately joined a church. I was baptized and began to serve on a team in church. Soon I became dissatisfied and yearned for more (though I wasn’t quite sure what that “more” was). My search led me to China, then to Africa where I got baptized in the Holy Spirit and really learned about who God is and how alive He is, and then to California to a school of ministry preparation and discipleship training. It was at this school that the Lord truly began to work in me. He broke me down, redefined me, showed me His nature, and made my already insatiable appetite for Him even more so.
It was during this past summer that God called me to finally come home after years of traveling. And it is here at home that I believe He is wanting me to equip myself for ministry preparation and a life completely surrendered to Him. One of the things that frustrates and pains me to see is the lack of passion and zeal for the Lord in the Church. How can we sing about the God of Wonders who is worthy of all our worship and praise and yet be bored and unexcited? There’s no passion, no fire in the church because we don’t truly know the love of Christ. There lacks a deep revelation of God’s love for the world and for the individual. I believe the Lord is calling me to wake up and encourage the church to be the disciples Jesus intended for us to be. We are called to be the children of God not merely churchgoers!
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