In Taiwan Again

Dustin and I left Kansas City last Wednesday for a last minute trip to Taiwan. We came for my grandfather’s funeral which was this past Saturday.

Being back here in my native land is always strange. In one sense it feels more like home to me than America, but in another sense I also feel more ill-fitting. Despite the fact that I am surrounded by people who look like me, the culture is very different from the one I was raised in. 

Yet there still is that familiarity, that feeling of nostalgia that tugs at my heart. The alleyways, the smells, the memories of growing up in Taipei all remind me that I am still Taiwanese despite the fact that I’m more proficient in English. 

When I first immigrated to America with my mom, I hated it. I wanted to come back home, back to Taiwan where all the familiar things made me feel like I made sense. I majored in English education in college, always planning on returning back to Taiwan once I graduated. 

But as each year passed, as Jesus found me and gave me new roots that wound around Him, home was no longer a nation but a person. 

So much has changed since I left Taiwan at the age of eight. I truly feel that I can live anywhere and be at home because Christ is my home. Thank You Lord, for helping me find rest here on Earth. 

Goodbye Grandpa

A few days ago, my dad face timed me from Taiwan with the news that my grandpa’s in critical condition and only has a few days to live. 

The past two evenings, I’ve face timed with my grandpa on his hospital bed saying hi to him, telling him I love him. 

When I would hang up, I sit on the couch and remember the good times I had with him…He would send me birthday and Christmas cards every year when I was younger. He would call and ask me what I wanted for my birthday and every time, without fail, I would say, “a Barbie!” Thus began my huge Barbie collection which eventually grew to a portable Barbie home as well.

Later on, he sent me $20 bills with a note telling me to buy something nice for myself. 

I also treasured the times that he would take me to the park right next to his house in Taiwan where there are statues of cows and giraffs and take pictures of me there. 

Once he visited me at my elementary school and took awkward looking photos of me too. 

Last night, I face timed him for the last time. I said hello and that I love him before they pulled him off the machines.

I’m gonna miss you Ah-Gong (grandpa in Taiwanese). I love you very much. Thank you so much for looking after me and caring for me. 

True Leadership

I used to believe being a leader meant I had to have it all together and know all the answers. This wrong belief caused me to be extremely stressed and discouraged when I led because no one other than God is like that. It also led me to be really insecure as a leader. At times I would be fearful that those I was leading did not like me or disagreed with what I said. As a result, it was very difficult for me to receive any criticism even if it was constructive. 

Recently I was asked to be a Discipleship Coordinator for IHOPU students, basically a small group leader. As I step back into leadership, (I took a break for a season) for the first time, I felt the Lord helping me lead. He helped me do it with Him rather than separate from His help and presence.  

In the past, I would feel Him leading me only in moments where I was absolutely desperate or when the worship was really anointed. They were only snippets, seemingly accidental hiccups in my Christian walk. 

God has patiently taught my heart through each season to open up, to reach and know that I will find Him when I hold out my hand. I discovered time and time again, how ready and happy He is to help me and teach me how to do things. 

When I asked Him for grace to lead this small group, for His heart for each of the girls He has given me leadership over this season, for vision for the small group, He gave it to me and continues to pour out more and more into me as I pour into them. For the first time, I’m more concerned about their nearness to God instead of whether or not they like me because I feel His love so tangibly. This transformation in me is proof that God is real and of His transforming powers. 

Who we are today, our shortcomings and weaknesses do not limit the power of the Most High. He IS taking us from glory to glory, higher and higher no matter how our journey may look. We’re not just stuck in an eternal revolving door even if it feels like we are. There is hope for each and everyone of us. His Word is not just there to pity us. The Bible is not just a book of empty promises, but His Word is mighty, living and active, piercing through our emotions, weakness, broken words of man and our past. His Word towards us does not return to Him void but accomplishes the good desires of God. Thank You Jesus

Whatever we’re doing, we can do it with confidence of God’s presence and help. 

-Isaiah 55:11 “So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”

-Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”

-2 Corinthians 3:18 “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

0ZewApSOvp9u7D4ILL5z90

Such a good song. Causes my heart to open and celebrate God’s transforming power in my life.

Get some of the songs on her album through Noise Trade

Lyrics:

Lay down your arms
Give up the fight
Quiet our hearts for a little while

Things have been spoken
Shouldn’t be said
Rattles around in our hearts and our heads

Let’s feel what we cannot feel
Know what we cannot know
Let’s heal where we couldn’t heal
Oh, it’s a miracle, it’s a miracle

Things have been spoken
Shouldn’t be said
Rattles around in our hearts and our heads

Let’s feel what we cannot feel
Know what we cannot know
Let’s heal where we couldn’t heal
Oh, it’s a miracle, love is a miracle

Let’s feel what we cannot feel
Know what we cannot know
Let’s heal where we couldn’t heal
Oh, it’s a miracle

Let’s say what we cannot say
Let’s see what we cannot not see
Let’s hear what we could not hear
Oh it’s a mystery, love is a mystery
Oh it’s a miracle, it’s a miracle
Let’s be a miracle