Saturday, February 7, 2009

Birthday Gift from the Above


So today was our last day of the VERY last seminar! We left our hotel around 7:40 a.m. and rode the MRT to the church nearby to prepare lesson plans and materials for the day before the parents started dropping their children off.

El Shaddai (All-sufficient One), Jehovah Tsidkenu (God is my righteousness), and Jehovah Nissi (God is my banner) were the three names of God that we all taught today. If you think enough about it, there are most likely instances in your life where all three names of God are applicable. Today, the name El Shaddai seemed to be the most significant to me. It reminded me of just a few days ago, when two teachers from Nantou came to visit for a few days. The day that they were planning to leave to go back to Nantou, Bethany and I and ended up having to stay back at the hotel for a day and sleep because we were sick. This meant that we wouldn't be able to lead our two teams that evening, leaving just our translator there with about 12 kids. God, being all-sufficient, saw our need and provided those two visiting teachers who were able to stay and take the place of Bethany and me that night! They ended up staying the entire week and they kept their position of Team Leader, while Bethany and I became the Team Assistants because we were still recovering.

On the way up to lunch, Tiffany stopped me and handed me a java-chip Frappucino from Starbucks (my favorite!) and a nice birthday card! That was a really nice surprise. At lunch, we all had Subway sandwiches, which just so happens to be my favorite fast-food back in America =D. As we were finishing up lunch, I had another surprise. The staff brought out two really delicious (and pretty) birthday cakes!

After being stuffed with delicious food for lunch, we had to go back downstairs to do the afternoon half of our seminar, which ended around 5:00 p.m. After all the kids were picked up by their parents, our team had its usual debriefing and prayer. That evening, the entire American team (along with a few Taipei interpreters who stuck around) walked to a local night market. As usual, we were allowed to break up into groups of three or more to go shop and/or eat dinner. Bethany, Daniel, David R., David L., Hannah, Oliver, Peter, Skyler, and I wandered around the night market and it's surrounding streets for about an hour or so looking for a place where we could have a sit-down meal instead of the usual night market food stands. We ended up going to an Italian restaurant called Dr. Pasta! I couldn't have had a better birthday and I was even was feeling better then I had all week!

Sadly these few weeks of ministry have to come to a close. Many of us hope to return to Taiwan in the near future. I am very grateful for the many opportunities ATI provides for me to grow spiritually and to expand my understanding of different cultures. I am also so thankful for the friendships with other believers that I have made here in Taiwan and Hong Kong.


Caroline Rogers

Friday, February 6, 2009

Lessons Learned

“Don’t be afraid, I found you!” As Tim acted on stage as a shepherd, he said this to the lost sheep. At that moment, my eyes are bursting with tears. “You are found, my daughter.” Yes, I am found. And yes, we are all found!

The week before I came to CI is a difficult time for me, some problems form school started to show up to me in a painful way. It was too complicated that I even forgot how to worried, and too overwhelm that I even couldn’t feel the pain. Sometimes I cry at night, praying to God asking why this could happen.

In the days of CI, I tried to focus on the children and God. But still, sometimes sorrows would still come to me. As I tried to hide the feelings, the situation got even worse.

Today when me and Josie were preparing the lesson of Suffering for the little group, she told me the story about how a shepherd guide and teach the sheep to grow to love the shepherd more. She said this to me “God allows us to go through sufferings because He loves us.” He knows what is best for us, He loves us even more then we do. Even though it is hard to know why things happen like this in our life, as long as we remember that God is in control, we should no longer be afraid.

Jehovah Raah, God is our shepherd. He is not only a shepherd but a very good one. He loves us, and knows our deepest thought. When we are walking through the sorrows, Jesus carries us on His shoulder and walk through it with us.

Today, the teachers of CI are still coughing, and my problems are still unsolved yet. But after today’s lesson, we know, that God is guiding, and He know our needs. Just look up there and follow Him, that’s what a good sheep does.

When you feel your strength is running out, and lost; just call upon the name of the Lord, and you will be found.
“I found you, I found you.” He said.

Grace Lu
(Interpreter from Taiwan)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

For Each Day

We started this day with wisdom search: Does God show in some place than others if He is the all-knowing, omnipresent and unlimited God? Hmmm…. That is quite interesting; we discussed it and had a debating, and had an encouragement keeping this in mind. But I hope God will show Himself to us, in this seminar.

After wisdom search we went to a Thai food restaurant to enjoy a delicious meal. Sitting together with long tables, tasting each new dish, oh, of course, practicing how to use chopsticks, we had to say….we love this wonderful Asian experience!
Then we left for the very famous tour site: Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall, having the group picture… Even the sky was full of clouds, with little rain, but it could not stopping us appreciating the beauty of Chinese culture, and enjoy this outgoing day. Also we took a shop at Taiwan Handicraft Promotion Center, where made us bring quite much stuff, very happy!

Tonight we taught about the name of God: El Roi to children again, teaching them the power of God, how He watches us in our daily life, how He keeps us and how we should be responsible for ourselves, and build the truth in our life, making our foundation strong in our holy God. And that is also a lesson for us, reminding that our God is with us all the time, being the securely reliance for us. Just because of His wonderful name El Roi, we are able to give our all to Him, letting the work of God be accomplished; we are be able to go through every day, knowing there is the hope for us, for these children, for this seminar, for this country, for tomorrow.

This is what I know and learned from His names just for me.

Angel Liao

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Homeschooling-- Here and There

Today, we got to do something very special.... we met the Joshua Students! Joshua Students are a group of homeschooled children in Taiwan. Homeschooling is not very popular in Taiwan and education is very important here, so this group is being very courageous to introduce a whole country to the homeschooling system.


These students came and will be spending the next few days with us. This afternoon, David Lukachick had all of us play some games to introduce us to one other and then to help us remember their names. So first, we were divided into 2 groups, each group having a mix of American teachers and Joshua Students. Then we, stood in a circle and said our names as well as one adjective that started with the same letter as our names, for example, my name is Jessica and my adjective is Joyful. But wait... that's not all we had to do... oh no, that would be too easy... :) The 1st person would say his adjective and name, and the 2nd person would have to say the 1st persons name and adjective as well as her own name and adjective, then person 3 had to say person 1 and 2's names and adjectives as well as his.... etc. .. all the way around the circle. I felt kind of bad for the last person who has to remember everyone's names and adjectives!! It was a lot of fun... and a lot of creative people. By the time both groups have finished, we knew each other much better.

Now that we had learned everyone's name, we played the game. One person was given a paper baton was told to tap anyone person in their circle with it. There was a catch though, when the person with the baton was coming to tap you, if you said your name and another person's name before you were hit, the baton would be directed to the person whose name you said. The person with the baton had to remember which name belonged to whom. Now, if you did not say the names fast enough, you would be tagged, and you would be the person with the baton, out to tap the next person.... only if you were faster then the minds of your team players!! This game proved full of lots of fun and laughs!!

I really enjoy getting to know the Joshua Students and look forward to working more with them and spending more time with this incredible group!!!

But for now....
Zai jian ~ Good Bye

Jessica Fitzpatrick

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Last Mile

We started our first morning back in Taipei with a typical continental breakfast, then wisdom search. We talked about Jehovah Shalom, the God of peace. After reading Philippians 4:4-7 I was excited to see that God’s peace comes by rejoicing in Him and not worrying about outward circumstances. So, after wisdom search we headed to the church.

We didn’t waste much time getting started. Setting up was the first step, ie: arranging chairs, hauling boxes up two floors of stairs, setting up tables, and all that fun stuff. Needless to say, we were slightly overjoyed when we heard it was time for lunch. I was pleasantly surprised to find out we were having awesomeness for lunch! (most people call awesomeness dumplings) Yum!

So, after a nourishing lunch of awesomeness, we continued our preparation for the CI. We met the new interpreters and had some helpful teacher training sessions, and soon it was time for more food! Supper was some really good chicken that was close to being almost as good as awesomeness. (aka dumplings) After supper we went down to wait for our kids.

I was nervous, like usual, on the first night of the seminar. However, this time I called on God as Jehovah Shalom and rejoiced in Him. God was faithful, and He flooded me with His peace. The children were great and everything seemed to go smoothly. Praise the Lord.

God really showed Himself strong that night. He gave us all the strength we needed right when we needed it. Between God and vitamin C (his faithful agent), we were able to get the Taipei seminar off to a great start!

Angela Joy Clark

Monday, February 2, 2009


“For Thou, Lord, hast made me glad through Thy work: I will triumph in the works of Thy hands.” (Psalm 92:4)

As I look back over the past two seminars, I find much to be glad about. I have seen the Lord answering prayers, working in kinds’ lives, and teaching me. As I look forward to the next seminars, I am confident that we will triumph through the work of His hands.

This morning, we left Hong Kong and flew back to Taiwan. Our next seminar does not start until tomorrow, so we went on a fun outing this evening. We went to Shilin night market—the largest night market in Taipei.

Perhaps the most noteworthy cultural experience of the day was eating stinky tofu. Stinky tofu is as its name implies—tofu that stinks. It has this unique sickening stench. However, it does not taste nearly as bad as it smells. In fact, it tastes ok.

Thank you for your prayers for us. As you continue to pray for us, pray that God will do many great things in and through us during our final seminar. Also, please continue to pray for spiritual strength and physical health for each of us.

Teresa Vanderford

Sunday, February 1, 2009

I Left My Heart in Hong Kong...

I just couldn't believe that IT'S OVER now!!!

The CI team has been here for almost a week, and it's been an amazing week. Taking the teachers and staff to one of the outline islands, praying with them, serving with them, seeing how God works in the children's lives... No wonder there's a Cantonese saying goes like this, "Happy moment flies!" (快樂的時光過得特別快). As a co-host and stage interpreter here in Hong Kong, it's my greatest pleasure to work with this bunch of awesome people. They all have a servant heart, a love for the kids. They never complain about the food, nor ask for spacious room. I can always see a smile hanging on their face after a long day teaching the kids. It's really my honor to serve the Lord with these awesome people!

Moments with the kids are flashing back on my mind. The kids are all so precious in God's eyes. I'm touched by the love of the Lord. I feel the immense love of our Father when I see how the kids get to know Him more here and how some of them were changed here. I'm so grateful that I can be used by the Lord in such a way.

It's the last day of CI. I know we all gonna miss the kids. But I'm praying that our loving Father, who is Jehovah Raah, would watch over them wherever they go, and that the kids would follow the Shepherd all the days of their life.

It's over for me here, but the teachers and the staff are heading to Taipei tomorrow and continue their journey of sharing God's love with the kids. Please keep them in prayers. It'd mean so much to them. =)

Ada Leung
(HK Stage Interpreter)