Day 5: Encouragement

Today was the kind of day that everyone needs once in a while. We spent the day mostly with people who are like-minded. Our day started with the opportunity to gather with other Americans here in the city who live here for business purposes. This was my third time to gather with them to lift up the name of our Dad in a Sunday gathering. All three times they have asked me to share from The Book for their gathering. It’s a truly humbling experience. It’s like Michael Jordan asking me for basketball advice! I am honored to even know these people, let alone call them my friends. They are the people that The Book would be writing about if it were still being written today. And to possibly think I have anything to offer them is laughable. I am honored and humbled to just be able to sit with them and share a part of our lives. It turns out that I am the one who comes away encouraged. When they gather each week, they share family business success and failures. To listen to them and hear their hearts shames me. As I’ve said before, and will every time I get to meet with them, these are the real heroes of our business. Especially Marcus and Katlyn. They are the youngest on this team, and yet they have such a vibrant and far-reaching impact on their friends and acquaintances. That’s not to say that every team member here isn’t just stinkin’ amazing! But I’m very proud to call Marcus and Katlyn “ours.”

From the gathering we went to lunch at The Sizzling Skillet. I LOVE THAT PLACE! It’s various fried meats and potatoes served on a fajita-style skillet. Mmmm! We shared the noon meal with some Americans here on business, and were encouraged by their work. When I first came to this country, they had only been here a few days, and had no language skills and no connections to the people they need to reach. Now, almost 2 years later, they are carrying on conversations in the native language and have a huge work going on with college students. They are the couple that we will return to encourage and support in October.

After lunch we did just a bit of shopping, then it was off for Karaoke! Here, Karaoke is called KTV (Karaoke Tele-Vision). And it’s different than karaoke in the USA. Here, you rent a private room that is fully equipped for your singing (lights, sound equipment, etc.) and it’s just and your friends that embarrass each other. We sang songs in English and Chinese with our local believing friends, having a GREAT time. I’ll have that video up before long. I left KTV encouraged by the playful nature of the first family members of Marcus and Kat’s business here.

We wrapped up Karaoke JUST in time to meet some friends and attend a tea ceremony. A tea ceremony consists of brewing and tasting various kinds of teas. In our case, it was gua tea and oolong tea. The lady brewing the tea gave us all kinds of fascinating information about tea and it’s brewing during our time together. Apparently there are 21 steps to the perfect cup of tea. And I watched all 21 steps with great fascination. The group we were with was ½ family and ½ almost family. I was able to speak to them as a group and encourage them each to take the necessary steps for their relationships.

The night ended with us doing a broadcast back to the states with a trip update. We connected through Marcus and Kat’s internet and shared some of what we’ve seen here. In listening to the stories, I am encouraged about the business here. As Lindsey and Lissa shared, the people who became like-minded with us last trip have been sharing with their non-like minded friends, which is AWESOME

I’m sure by this point that I am rambling…I am falling asleep as I type, so I’m off! Keep lifting us up. We have some hard conversations tomorrow, and I nearly just smashed my face into the keyboard falling asleep! I’ll send more later!

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