I grew up as a missionary kid in Taiwan. Later, after college and graduate school, I became a full-time missionary in Hong Kong with a local missionary agency. My job was taking short-term teams into China for cultural exchanges as well as making friends for the sake of the Kingdom. I fell in love with China the moment I first crossed the border from Hong Kong into Shen Zhen. All the cells in my body came alive as I walked the streets taking in all the sights, sounds and smells of the local stores and street vendors. I felt like I had come home after being away for a very long time. It was a different feeling than I had in Taiwan where I grew up or in Hong Kong where I lived at the time. Somehow, China made my heart pump a bit faster and my lungs expand more as if I was finally breathing after holding my breath for a long time.
Currently I have the privilege of working for a different organization that ministers to children; Awana International. We partner with churches in China to train Sunday School teachers how to effectively disciple kids and train parents how to better connect with their children and parent them in a way that is loving and honoring to the Father. Below is a testimony I read recently from a mom in China regarding her child and her heart's desire to be be close to her son. I am blessed with a six year old daughter who I absolutely adore so this testimony really spoke to me. Perhaps it will speak to you as well.
"We have been to many trainings and heard many sermons. We even took trains to travel to far away locations to attend some trainings. They are wonderful. We enjoyed them. But somehow, we didn’t know how to solve our own family problems. We had fights between me and my husband, sometimes between me and my child, sometimes between my husband and my child. In our church, many families have similar problems. We were frustrated for many years. I suffered for so many years because I never imagined my child could ever talk to me from his heart. Everyday I used to look at him with painful heart and he would isolate himself from us. It seemed that my tearful prayer was not enough!
We are very, very grateful to this building healthy family and children ministry training. This is the first time our family experienced communication in the love of Jesus. My son cried and said sorry to me. We hugged together and cried together. I could never believe that this day came true. We cried louder and louder without being aware of so many people around us. The word of God is changing our family now and we have a new life!"