Hungry & tired

Hungry & tired

It’s strange, but it seems like I am always hungry & tired lately. This is not because I’m not eating enough or due to lack of sleep. But the reasons for my famishment & fatigue may be that each day here feels SO LONG. Here in Taichung, almost everything takes longer time & more effort. For instance, going to church on Sunday… By grace of God we became members of a small Taiwanese church. We truly love our new Christian brothers & sisters. They are welcoming, very patient & understanding as we try to communicate in Mandarin, and the worship service, which is almost 2 hours is truly Spirit-filled. But to get to the church, it requires a bus ride and about 20 minute walk. By the time we get to church we’re soaked in sweat. Even if we are to drive, it would take a long time to park the car since there is no parking lot & street parking is very limited where the church is located. We figure even if we find a parking spot it would be as much a walk as from the bus stop.

IMG_1171

IMG_1174

IMG_1176

IMG_1178

IMG_0945

The heat in Taiwan is something else. This evening, it’s about 86.6 Fahrenheit in our apartment, but the heat index is higher so it really does feel like it’s more in the 90s. As soon as we are finished with a cold shower, we start to sweat. We can’t seem to get away from the heat unless we are at a public place with A/C like our children’s school library.

What is also quite stressful is driving. Currently we are borrowing a car from our missions agency until the 9th of September. Driving really puts you on edge because other cars don’t always follow the rules of the road, and the scooters are always around you, so you really have to use all your mirrors in the car. We have already seen a major scooter & car accident about a week ago, and even this morning we saw a scooter almost hitting another scooter. You then add unfamiliar streets & road signs that are not always in English, and what you have is an ingredient for mental overload & exhaustion by the time we arrive at our destination.

IMG_1181

If this week’s blog sounds like a complaint, I apologize, but when we started this blog, we wanted to share as much as we can about what it means to be missionaries overseas. That is to say, we wanted to share not only our victories or lessons reaped, but even challenges, discouragement & setbacks we faced because ultimately missions is about frail children of God entering something that is far greater & beyond our abilities, character & even faith. On the mission field, our faith in God, our sense of calling & our belief about ourselves are tested. Sometimes you will pass with flying colors. Other times you are disappointed at your weaknesses & lack of faith. But no matter what we may go through, one thing that is for sure is that God is in control, and he will be glorified. It’s an undeniable truth that we know in our minds, and yet sometimes our emotions & our heart do not go side by side with what we believe.

I have to confess. We miss all those whose lives have touched ours. When you are surrounded by everything new, after the initial honeymoon stage, you begin to hunger for familiar faces & voices. Loneliness is something that I never had to deal with before. In fact, I sought after solitude. But in Taiwan, I’m learning that loneliness may be inseparable from doing missions. I know that we will build new relationships & that CHRIST IS ENOUGH for any of us, but still I’m having a hard time trying to convince my heart. I can’t help, but to long for friends & family.

Maybe this is why Christians are sent into the world, so that we may long for our true heavenly home where all of us can be together in our Father’s presence.

Today (Monday) has been a long day. We found out last Friday that our international driver’s license needs to be certified within 30 days of our entrance into Taiwan. Today was the 30th day. But just before we left the apartment to take the kids to school, the water pipe underneath our kitchen sink broke off, flooding our kitchen floor. It’s the 3rd time having problems with this sink since we moved in. Right after our language school we went to get our international driver’s license certified, but didn’t know that we needed to take passport photos. We had to go out & have photos taken, brought them back to the Motor Vehicle Division, went to pick up the kids. And when we finally got home after a long day, we discovered another water line was leaking and there was a puddle under the sink. I had to clean and manage the leak while Jeanette rushed to cook dinner. It’s not easy to have 2 people in our kitchen. We had a visitor and then some e-mails and such to take care of so now at almost 10:00 p.m. I’m opening my language book to do homework/study for tomorrow. We have had many days like this.

Today is our 1 month anniversary in Taiwan. We are very tired.

I don’t have a lesson or an insight to share this week, except that WE TRULY NEED YOUR PRAYERS. Not because we don’t believe in the Lord & His promises, but because our hearts ache for our brothers & sisters in Christ back home.