When he received the phone call from his parents, Ming Wei’s* heart grew heavy. Not only was he concerned about his grandmother’s health, he had a much deeper concern—he was worried about the spiritual state of his grandmother.
As an overseas Chinese student, Ming Wei had the opportunity to learn about Christianity and had become a believer just a couple of years ago. Now as he packed to go home to China, he was anxious about how to broach the subject of the gospel with his ailing grandmother. Since coming to Christ, he hadn’t found himself in this position before and he was at a loss as to how to talk to her about Christ. One thing he did know—time was short and this would be his one and only opportunity to address her eternal destiny.
Looking for direction in his Bible, he kept coming upon verses which had the theme of “Rejoice!” How irrelevant, he thought. What did rejoicing have to do with this distressing situation in which he found himself?
Arriving home in China, he travelled to the hospital to see his grandmother. Shock swept over him upon entering the hospital room. He realized how frail she’d become. She no longer had any strength to move her body. She was unable to talk and her eyes remained closed most of the time.
This can’t wait! Ming Wei thought to himself. But with his grandmother so frail and with so little biblical knowledge, how could he express the Bible’s great message of hope and assurance in a way she could understand?
He went home to collect a few things so he could remain at the hospital with her overnight. As he grabbed his Bible, an idea formed in his head as to the best way to approach the gospel with his grandmother.
Ming Wei recalled his time at a GoodSeed TERM Seminar some months earlier. There he’d learned how to explain the Bible’s main message from creation through to the cross, laying down a foundation of understanding to help a person come to a clear understanding of the gospel. During the seminar, GoodSeed staff had taught through the book By This Name. Ming Wei wished he had a copy with him now. But he remembered how he’d been taught, so he knew he could use the same approach.
When the hospital staff had completed his grandmother’s treatment, Ming Wei sat down and began to teach his precious grandmother, starting in Genesis. Even as he finished sharing with her about how the world came into being, he realized he’d captured her attention. Her eyes were fully open, her head was turned toward him and she was listening with rapt attention.
His father, who is not a believer, sat nearby, also listening. He later shared with Ming Wei how he was so surprised at how the simple information that Ming Wei had shared caused such a change. It had been many days since the dying grandmother had opened her eyes for such a long time.
His father said, “Really! This is happening?!” He was astonished at the transformation taking place as Ming Wei began to share the Bible’s story.
That first day, Ming Wei was only able to get through the account of creation and how Adam and Eve had chosen to sin against God. Seeing that his grandmother was tired, he felt it best to continue the next day.
That night, Ming Wei stayed at the hospital with his grandmother. As he sat in the room, Ming Wei became alarmed as he witnessed the critical condition of her heart, as the heart rate monitor frequently recorded serious episodes taking place. There are only hours left, he thought.
The next day, he pressed on with greater urgency, teaching his grandmother a few basic stories from the Old Testament, then moving on to share the message of Christ’s death on the cross. After taking an hour to explain the significance of the empty cross and empty tomb, Ming Wei’s mother asked his grandmother, half-joking, “Did your grandson deliver the message right?”
As his grandmother sought out Ming Wei’s eyes, she nodded a very definite, “Yes.”
More seriously, Ming Wei’s mother asked, “Do you understand what he is talking about?”
Once again, the slow nod came.
Ming Wei questioned her, “So now, do you believe? And do you accept this love from Christ?“
She nodded once more—yes.
Really? Really? Really? Really?! went through Ming Wei’s mind at that moment. Really!? I can share the message clearly and someone becomes a believer just like that!? Okay, okay, okay!
As he prayed with his grandmother, excitement at her understanding filled his heart.
Over the next few days, Ming Wei took every opportunity to ensure she really understood and believed. He painstakingly explained the gospel as clearly as he knew, guided by what he’d learned at the TERM seminar. He was amazed at how his grandmother held on to everything he said. He later described her as “the most sincere listener I have ever seen!” When Ming Wei told her about the Last Supper, she began to cry. Then, when her heart rate began to spike, he hurried on to explain the rest of the story.
During this time, he began to sense a real peace about her. And he wasn’t the only one to notice.
One of his uncles, also an unbeliever, had been observing this transformation since Ming Wei’s arrival. He became quite moved. He also commented on the change that had taken place in Ming Wei himself since he had become a believer.
While Ming Wei was at home, the uncle stopped by and requested a Bible so he could read this good news for himself. Ming Wei was happy to supply him with one, and knows that his uncle continues to read through God’s Word on his own.
Ming Wei’s grandmother died not long after he was able to explain the gospel to her. He shared with us, “Now she actually knows more than I do about Jesus and God.” He feels a great peace, knowing where his beloved grandmother is now. He also is immensely grateful to God that when the vital moment came to share the gospel, he knew right where to start and how to share.
Ming Wei’s final words in his email to us were, “Praise the LORD! HE is almighty and HE can heal our wounds and wipe our tears away from our eyes. REJOICE! HE has conquered the grave and brought life and glory to all of us!”
(* All names changed as per GoodSeed policy.)