CHINA– Yan Cuiling was only 45 years old when she was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Friends urged her to receive Christ promising that she could be healed. In her desperation, she accepted Jesus into her life in 1988. A month later, God indeed healed her. However, she was quick to forget God when she no longer needed Him. Three years later, a fall left Yan bedridden. “I broke my left leg near the hip joint and had a plaster cast up to my waist. I couldn’t move. I understand (now) this incident as God’s loving discipline, calling me to return to Him,” says Yan.
Read the Bible
There was a serious shortage of Bibles in those years. A preacher saw Yan’s need for God’s Word and had compassion on her. He parted with his precious Bible. Yan’s son then attached the Bible to the ceiling and let it dangled in front of Yan so that she could read it.
When Yan finished the Old Testament, she was not healed immediately. One pastor who visited, reasoned that if God had healed her, she might have attributed her healing to the doctors. God wanted to build her faith and teach her to solely rely on Him. It was six months later, when Yan had completed reading the entire Bible, that she was healed. Since then, she has followed the Lord faithfully. Yan, now 70, has never had any major illnesses.
Share the Gospel
After her healing, in 1991, Yan started a fellowship in her home. She shared a chapter a day from the Bible, starting from the Book of Genesis to Revelation. In the course of four years, the group of three grew to more than 200. Yan has also led her four children and four grandchildren to salvation. Even at the age of 70, she is ever ready to share the gospel. Earlier in the year, she saw a grubby 12-year old boy standing outside her house seeking shelter from the rain. She spoke to the boy and found out that he was a runaway because he did badly in school and was afraid to tell his parents. Yan took the boy in, washed and fed him and phoned his parents. The boy’s parents were so grateful that he was safe. They had been searching for their son for three days and were sick from worry. When the boy’s parents came to take him home, Yan shared about God’s love and the family came to Christ.
Serve the Future Generation
“If we say we love the Lord, we must show that with action,” says Yan. That was Yan’s motivation to start Sunday school in 2004. “My husband died young. I became a widow at the age of 41. I single-handedly brought up my children. I saw that I had the gift of teaching. All the children (in my classes) are obedient. I teach them to love the Lord and love the church. My hope is that from these children, there will be our future generation of church leaders and pastors.”
Yan has passed the task of running the Sunday school to eight younger teachers. They teach around 40 children weekly. Her dedication to the Lord still motivates her to come early each week to get the classroom ready for the children. She would sweep the floor, write out Bible verses for the classes and teach whenever any of the Sunday school teachers are not available. “Although I am not pretty and not well educated, I just love the Lord and want to give Him my all. When the little children come to church and are in a need, I just want to be there for them.”
A Bible which dangled from the ceiling changed Yan’s life. Through her life, she has blessed many generations.
Millions in China will experience life changing power from reading God’s Word if more Bibles are made available for them. If you would like to make a financial contribution towards this need, please contact us or the Bible Society in your country and designate your gift to “UBS China Partnership — Bible Translation in China”.
Story and photos: Ms Yeo Tan Tan
Edited: Jenise Lee
2013 © United Bible Societies China Partnership