By Roxy Photenhauer —
Will Wang is lucky to be alive. Because of China’s one-child-per-family law, Will should have been aborted. China allowed families to have more than one child only if they pay a huge sum of money to the government.
His parents weighed their decision carefully. It was a lot of money, but they made the sacrifice.
Originally, Will pursued math but in his senior year of high school he grew more fond of English. Being from Shanghai, the metropolitan coastal city, he had the chance to meet and talk to expats. One was Nick, an American with whom he could practice English and enjoy friendship. Nick was a Christian and this intrigued Will.
“I used to be a pretty bad man on the streets,” Nick told him. “It is God of the Bible who has transformed me into what I am today.”
China teaches atheism. Believing in God gives people something other than the government to hope in. A communist, totalitarian government cannot allow any competition.
So Will didn’t, couldn’t believe easily in God. He had been drilled about the preeminence and reliability of science.
“To me reading the Bible was like fairytales and it wasn’t anything real,” Will says.
Will applied and was accepted into college in Detroit Michigan. A Chinese church took him in; he loved the people, but when it came to the Bible studies he was practically dozing off. Making a Christian friend on campus, Will started to believe in God — a little bit
But what pushed him over the top was placing his wallet — with $900 in cash and credit cards on top of his trunk at the gas station and forgetting it after he filled up, driving away.
“I was really really really upset,” he remembers. “I was blaming God. Why would You make my wallet lost today? That’s a lot of money.”
He did his best to not be gloomy.
The next day, someone came to the dorm looking for him, but he was out and had to be informed. Will waited the following day for him. He was a Black man. (Most Chinese feel some amount of bias towards Blacks, Will says. He overcame his own biases instantly; the guy gave him his wallet.)
“I started hugging him,” Will remembers.
After Will thanked him profusely, the man turned to walk away. But he couldn’t resist asking a question.
“You know sir, um, I’m just curious,” he said. “Why would you return my wallet back to me with the money in it? Most people wouldn’t return it.”
“I’m a Christian,” the man replied. “God wants us to love each other as brothers and sisters. I hope what I have done to you today, you will do to others one day.”
The power of the man’s example of living out his faith with integrity caused Will’s faith to become complete. The wallet was the tipping point. After virtually a lifetime of God calling him out of Buddhism, he knew it was time to surrender completely to Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior.
God imparted his spirit and Will was born again. “It was a divine set up,” he says.
“It immediately changed my heart at the moment,” he says. “I felt so touched, and at that moment I instantly believed in God.”
Will no longer dozed during church service. He got baptized and feels peace and comfort. He started leading a Bible study.
Roxy Photenhauer studies at the Lighthouse Christian Academy in Santa Monica.