Along with the blessings, there have been some challenges…It is hard knowing that most of my friends and classmates are not Catholics, or even Christians for that matter. It is also discouraging because there are so many temples! 15,000! But, like I said earlier, trust in the Lord!
The kids lined up right away for the gift, and of course the parents let them have it because, let’s face it, how could they say no to a beautiful gift? It felt awesome. It’s hard to describe the joy of being able to share the message of Jesus’ saving love to these kids who have quite simply never heard it before.
Yu Hou came in with pizza, our lunch! There is actually a Pizza Hut (!) in the city but we have not gone yet. I immediately appreciated how they were thoughtful about what we might like to eat.
The first night was interesting for sure. The nights still got down to the 40s and, without heat, we were a little chilly. There were a bunch of noises, too, to feed our imaginations: some weird squealing (which we think now is a nighthawk), a rooster who must be jet lagged too as he started at 2am, and then stray dogs barking for what seemed like hours at a time. We were rattled by the initial shock of being in such a different place. The next morning, the reading was from Mark 4 where Jesus calmed the storm and I felt like the Lord was speaking to me when he said, “Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?” (Mark 4:40)