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Adventist Mission

What About the Idol?

Ah Tan’s mother decided to learn more about Jesus. She talked to Ah Tan’s father about this new God, and he asked her to find out more about this Jesus.

This is a story about ten-year-old Ah Tan, who lives with her family in southern China. [Locate China on a map.]

The Idol Guan Yin

It seemed that everyone in Ah Tan’s family was sick. Her father had painful kidney stones, and her mother often felt dizzy. When Ah Tan ran high fevers, her mother had to take her to the doctor. Every doctor visit cost a day’s wages.

Ah Tan’s family had an idol named Guan Yin. It was the only god Ah Tan knew. The family gave gifts to the idol and prayed for better health, but they still got sick.

Then one day Ah Tan’s mother found a piece of paper on the family’s doorstep. She picked it up and read it. It was about Jesus. The pamphlet said that Jesus was kind, loving, and powerful—the only true God.

Ah Tan’s mother told her daughter about what the paper said. Ah Tan had never heard of Jesus before. She didn’t realize that a god could be kind or loving. Mother wondered, too, whether Guan Yin was worthy of their worship. After all, the idol didn’t make the family well when they prayed. Perhaps Jesus was more powerful than Guan Yin.

Getting to Know Jesus

Ah Tan’s mother decided to learn more about Jesus. She talked to Ah Tan’s father about this new God, and he asked her to find out more about this Jesus.

Ah Tan’s neighbor was an Adventist, so Ah Tan’s Mother asked her questions about Jesus. The neighbor invited Mother to church the following Sabbath, and she gladly accepted.

Ah Tan’s mother went with her neighbor to the simple Adventist church. As she sat listening to the sermon, she began to feel sick. She got up and walked outside. Then she walked home. By the time she arrived home, she was feeling better. The next week she went to church with her neighbor again, and again she became sick. But as soon as she left the church she felt better. This happened several times.

But Ah Tan’s mother wouldn’t give up. She wanted to know more about God. She realized that Satan was making her sick to keep her from learning about God. Mother decided to become a Christian.

Ah Tan’s father began go to church with Mother. When the believers learned about the family’s health problems, they prayed for them. After that, Ah Tan’s parents weren’t troubled by weakness or pain. Even Ah Tan, who didn’t yet attend church, stopped having the mysterious fevers.

What About the Idol?

Ah Tan’s mother wanted to be baptized, but first she had to destroy the idol, Guan Yin. When Ah Tan found out, she cried, “Oh, no! You mustn’t destroy the idol! It’s very expensive! Can’t we sell it?”

“If we don’t get rid of the idol,” her mother explained, “then we can’t expect Jesus to answer our prayers. We know now that Guan Yin has no power.” Ah Tan thought about this and finally agreed to let Mother destroy the idol. She watched as her parents broke the idol and threw it into the trash.

Ah Tan Loves Jesus

Ah Tan decided to study the Bible with her parents and was very happy to learn about the one true God. Her parents were also glad to know the truth. A few months later, the church members spent an afternoon at a pond in the countryside. There Ah Tan was baptized. Because the government doesn’t want children and young people to be baptized, she didn’t tell her school friends about her baptism.

Ah Tan is glad that Jesus is her friend now. She wants to encourage children everywhere to believe in God and trust Him so Satan can’t pull them down.

Let’s pray for the thousands of children in China who need to know that Jesus loves them. And let’s remember to bring our mission offerings so even more children can learn to love Jesus.