God opened my eyes to see His heart for the people in Taiwan
--2009 Taiwan Mission Journal
By Sarah Chen
In the beginning of this year, I was planning a trip back to Taiwan in Oct. When I saw the Mission Taiwan trip planned in Sep/Oct this year, I knew that it was prepared by God. I have no excuse not to join. It absolutely matched my personal itinerary. The only mission experience I had in the past was the Tijuana one day mission which really doesn’t count as a mission trip. So, the Taiwan mission is actually a big one for me, and deep down I feel incapable and nervous. However, after two meetings before the departure, I felt so much released, because our mission partners are the church familiar faces.
Of course, there are some sacrifices of work and arrangements for skipping classes, and some arrangements I had to make before the departure. But, all these really paid off. God opened my eyes to see His heart for the people in Taiwan, and His heart for the abandoned kids in Huei Ming School.
Our first mission task was the Saturday school for the kids from church of Rih Nang. There were about 20 some kids in a small classroom which actually is the first floor of the pastor’s apartment. It serves as the Sunday worship place as well. Finance wise, it’s a poor church, but, I think the pastor and those volunteer teachers (mostly from other churches) are giving their best to those kids. This ministry really reminded me of my childhood Sunday school experience. I was attracted to church when I was just a kid because they provided a good Sunday school program gathering many children there. Works and efforts on the children will not give us instant result, but I know God treasures this kind of beautiful ministry.
We had a chance to visit the 88 flood disastrous area in southern part of Taiwan. There are about 300 people in the village, where all villagers are somehow related, or at least know each other. Any stranger entering that village will be noticed in a second without question. Originally, we were warned that the disastrous area will be challenging for mission group. However, it turned out that the two days at SanDiMen were the most relaxed and memorable time in our mission trip. Images of the mountain, church, and people there keep popping up to me after return even weeks later. It is the first time that I know a place that is 100% Christian in Taiwan. I will never forget their expression when they tell us with pride in their eyes that in their village there are no idol worshippers. What a confidence, and it’s such a blessing from our Lord. They are the poorest tribe among all aboriginal tribes in Taiwan. Nevertheless, spirituality wise, they are abundantly blessed by God. After the 88 flood, Taiwan government ordered them to relocate the village to another area for the sake of safety. However, they started the construction of their new church just a year ago. They have invested one third of the money into the construction. They have no clue as of what to do now. They can only pray that God will guide them. One thing they know is that the church will be built no matter what’s going to happen. Their faith to God is impressive. We heard no complains from any of them when they are in such a big dilemma. We had the chance to worship with them the first night and they sing the song” Lord’s Grace is Enough” in a fast speed. That was the first time that I heard people sing this song so cheerfully, not to mention the difficult situation they are going through now.
After San-Di-Men, we all stayed in HueiMin School as teaching aids. We are all so touched by the teachers’ and nannies’ love for those disabled kids. This is my first time encountering multi-level disabled children who are autistic, blind, and sometimes mentally slow. I believe what sustained the teachers work here is not just theory, but the love from God. I was told that most of the teachers were not majored in special education. They learn as they serve those kids. The few days stay in HueiMing School taught me to be a grateful person to thank God’s grace giving me sound body parts that I can use as a normal person. Before the trip, everything I have or do comes so naturally and I take everything for granted. Now I know its God’s grace that I can even breathe well. Imagine this, simple action like inserting the T-shirt into the pants will take those kids one whole year to master with daily repeating practice.
The last day, Sunday, we wrapped up our mission in HueiMing. The mission has ended there, but, my personal mission has just started. I had made up my mind to spread gospel to my father before this trip. Thanks to Pastor Joshua’s earnest attitude in spreading the gospel, my father accepted Jesus as his personal savior when Joshua told him that Jesus loves him. I never thought that my father could be this soft to accept Jesus, because in the past he had been obstinately refusing the gospel. Praise the Lord, because He is gracious. I am only taking one week off from my work, and He compensated me with big prize.
This mission trip is a fruitful one to me in all aspects, personally, mentally, and experience wise. I will definitely join our next mission to the places that God leads me to.