Monday, February 4, 2013

Taipei CI - Day 5

Saturday has always been my favorite day of the week. But I think today might just have taken the cake as being one of the most exciting Saturdays I have ever had. No, I didn’t bungee jump from Taipei 101 (the third tallest building in the world), or try fried seahorse on a stick (an elusive delicacy I have yet been able to find), but instead, spent the day running errands around downtown Taipei.

As an “extra” this week, I was not directly involved with Children’s Institute, working more with the IBLP team handling the logistics of the seminars. Today, the last day of the seminars in Taipei, was a full day jam-packed with activity. Starting bright and early at 7:45 AM, preparation at the China Evangelical Seminary for the Advanced, Financial Freedom, and English Basic seminars commenced with setting out books on the display table and routine mosquito zapping with the racquet of death (a name I dubbed for a nifty contraption that would easily be a hit in the Southern states).

Halfway through the morning, Alice, one of the wonderful employees from the Taiwan IBLP office asked me to run to several convenience stores to exchange $8,000 NT into hundred dollar bills for her to distribute among the group for the evening’s trip to a local night market. Trekking around town with Samuel Roberts and loaded with cash, I managed to exchange several thousand dollars at various little stores as cashiers eyed both of us suspiciously (me, as I handed over thousand-dollar bills while mumbling in broken Chinese and Sam, the blue-eyed American, standing tall next to me at 6’2”). We ended our rounds at the train station where we fed our last few thousand-dollar bills into a machine that spit out the bills we needed. Once we got back to the seminary, Sam handed over the huge wad of cash. Even though they were in Taiwanese dollars, we still felt like wealthy thousanders (not quite millionaires) for the brief time we had been entrusted with the money.

Over lunch, I walked to the church where the Basic Seminar was being held, delivering a Pizza Hut pie to my fellow colleagues running the book table. The two pieces I had truly tasted like legitimate slices of American heaven (pun half-intended). After lunch, I ran back to the seminary to deliver some paperwork (almost getting lost on the way) and brought a few more things back and forth between the two seminar locations.

Around 2 PM, Janet, Sam, and I set out to order 40 cups of bubble milk tea for the CI and IBLP team. Meanwhile, the CI team leaders prepared to move all their kids to the church for the parents presentation. After delivering the drinks to the hard workers, the extras began tearing down equipment from the seminar as Advanced and Financial Freedom attendees headed to the church. We finished our night with a cool-down with the rest of our group and headed to the night market for another evening of cultural immersion.

God has brought us through three seminars so far and spirits are high. Please pray that our team would continue looking to Him for strength and hope as we trust Him to complete the good work He has begun in the hearts of the Taiwanese people. We cling and find hope in His name, Jehovah-Raah, as He is our Good Shepherd, and proclaim with zeal that He is Jehovah-Nissi, our Banner of Victory.

Christine Ku

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