By: Todd Matthews

Pocket Full of Cigarettes That Never Got Smoked 

 April 22, 2024

The Jesus Film began bearing fruit during recording into the A-Che language last year. That’s God’s Word. It’s never not working.

Mu Shen has been a faithful follower of Jesus for the last few years. He has withstood persecution for his new faith in Jesus. He is from an unreached tribe that we are making disciples and planting churches in. After believing in Jesus, he began hosting a house church and growing in the Lord.

He was a natural candidate to be a “voice actor” for the Jesus Film when our team recorded the voice over in his native tongue last year. When Mu Shen showed up for the three-day recording event, he stuffed both pockets with four packs of cigarettes and two lighters. He was forewarned that this was a lock-in event for security purposes. The thought of not smoking terrified him so he prepared accordingly.

As he began to immerse himself in the recording of the Gospel of Luke in his own tongue something supernatural took place… he had no urge to smoke. Mu Shen had been smoking since he was a boy. This forty-year addiction was broken. He was set free. The cigarettes that were stuffed in his pockets ended up in the garbage can. Just last month, when in China, I confirmed that he is still walking in freedom.

After the voice actors finished, their recordings were sent to the U.S. for the dub over. On my trip last month, I delivered the finished Jesus Film to them. We have used the Jesus Film as a tool to preach the Gospel to thousands who had never heard the name of Jesus before. Please pray that this film would reach thousands more.

There may have been another miracle in getting the finished film to them. As we entered China for the first time in four years I was pulled aside to an enclosed area where two immigration officers began to question me. They began to ask about my visit, who I knew, and previous time spent in China. Suddenly their computer froze up and they immediately let us in. Praise God we got in and I didn’t have to give them any information.

Michelle and I spent all of March in China. Our precious time was spent encouraging teammates, partners, indigenous leaders, and missionaries. Michelle ministered to several women who feel lonely and are bearing scars from recent events in China. Michelle’s care for our coworker, Lisa Fang, who lost a child in 2021 brought more healing and renewed our emphasis for leader care.

Missionary team standing in front of the finished Jesus Film
Showing the Jesus Film in a Tribal Language for the First Time!

Our work in China has continued through the pandemic era and increased waves of persecution. It is our conviction that God has built this house. The network of trusted relationships runs wide and deep. Many ministries have backed out of China, but we are still there reaching the unreached and sending them out to do the same. We expanded all over Asia, but never stopped believing in God’s work and Christ’s body in China.

Would you consider helping our work of reaching Unreached People Groups in China? We need your help to move things forward. Any amount helps!

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