not rich not poor 969

Not Rich, Not Poor

April 30, 2021

By Andrew McChesney, Adventist Mission

Chang dreamed of money and wealth in China.

He thought his backpack-producing factory would make him rich, so he felt perplexed when the business fell on hard times. An online friend offered some unusual advice: “Go to church.”

Chang was too busy for church until after his factory went bankrupt, but he was not impressed with what he saw on his first visit. Then someone told him that if he went to church, God would bless him. “I wanted God to bless me with more money, so I went back a second time,” he said.

Around that time, Chang was hired to work as a restaurant cook in another city. Upon his arrival, he immediately began to look online for a church. “I wanted to find a church so I could earn more money,” he said.

He found the addresses of two churches—a large Sunday church and a small Seventh-day Adventist house-church. “I don’t know why, but I decided to go to the small church,” he said.

One day, a church member spoke with Chang about the Sabbath. “If you keep the Sabbath, you will get more blessings,” he said.

Chang wanted more money, so he asked the church to pray for him to keep the Sabbath. The next day, he told his manager that he wanted Sabbath off or he’d quit. “Don’t quit,” the manager said. “Keep your Sabbath.”

When the restaurant owner heard about the arrangement, he angrily ordered Chang to work on Sabbath. Chang promptly quit. Remarkably, all the restaurant’s employees also quit in a show of solidarity.

Almost immediately, church members proposed that Chang take health courses at an Adventist sanatorium. Chang liked the idea. With a nutritionist certificate, he could land a high-paying job. But he also had a growing desire to know God. He prayed for Bible training. The next day, two people from different churches called him separately to recommend that he attend an upcoming Bible training in another city. The training changed his heart. He lost his desire for money and became a Bible worker.

Chang, 34, said his life can be summed up by Isaiah 55:8, which says, “ ‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ says the Lord” (NKJV).

“I don’t feel rich now, but I don’t feel poor, either,” he said. “A preacher once told me that she lacks nothing. I said, ‘Really, you have so much money that you lack nothing?’ Now I can understand what she meant. I lack nothing.”

Your Sabbath School mission offerings help support Global Mission pioneers such as Chang.

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