At Exodus, we have a number of International Partners who serve our Lord overseas. This blog brings into focus something very specific that God is doing in East Asia. We have a young lady (that we will call “B” for security purposes) who serves in East Asia teaching students. Recently, she was visited by her parents (we’ll call them ‘mom’ and ‘dad’). When they returned home to the U.S., our missions contact, Zach Williams, interviewed them about their experiences visiting their daughter in East Asia.
Below are ten questions that surfaced some of their most memorable and meaningful experiences while visiting their daughter in East Asia.
How was your trip?
- It was awesome! We got to celebrate Thanksgiving with the nationals and they were so friendly. We also got to see them do a reenactment of the first thanksgiving. All of the nationals picked parts to play in the reenactment. When we got there we noticed that everyone stared at us a lot. Airport security was a nerve racking part of the trip. All of the security guards were very stern looking and official.
How is ‘B’?
- ‘B’ is ok. We know that she sometimes feels lonely but she is very content with where she is and she knows that this is where she needs to be. We could tell that it is becoming a home to her. When we originally saw her off to East Asia we thought it was going to be the most difficult thing to do but actually leaving her there when we left was harder.
What exactly is she doing in country?
- Obviously her job is to teach at the university where she lives but we could see that one of her main rolls in country outside of teaching is developing and cultivating relationships with both students and with teachers. For example, she meets every Tuesday night to have dinner with one of her national coworkers. ‘B’ helps to teach a young girl English while the young girl, in turn, teaches ‘B’ her language. ‘B’ also invests time with students by hosting “study” groups where ‘B’ has students over to do some extra studying for school as well as talk about the things of the Lord.
How has she adjusted to life there?
- For the most part she is pretty adjusted. She has always been that way. She has an adventurous spirit about her and seemed to have adjusted fairly quick aside from initial feelings of being home sick.
What can you tell us about the people in East Asia?
- Originally, when we got there we were amazed at how the people were so content with what they have in life. We also saw a great deal of brokenness. One example we heard was that in many of the families, the grandparents raise the grandchildren while the parents go off to other cities to work for the week only coming home on weekends or once a month to see their children. By the end of our trip we just could see how lost the people of this country really are. Only about .05% of them follow Jesus as their savior. We could also see how great these people are. They are very kind and hospitable. They were all very eager to please us in any way they could. Ultimately we left the country gaining a deeper understanding of why ‘B’ could love these people. Coming back to the states made us realize how free we are as a country. People here in the states can be who they would like to be while these people are forced by their government to do what they want.
Did you see God at work?
- We definitely got to see God at work through ‘B’ as she worked among those she built relationships with. It was very a very encouraging feeling to see this. It was definitely a confirmation to us that ‘B’ is doing what the Lord would have her do.
- We could also see God work in his keeping us safe. The plane ride was probably the most tense couple of hours of the whole trip. We didn’t know if we were going to make it through. American pilots are a lot different than the pilots of this country (jokingly). We also saw while we were there that God placed people in our path that looked out for us. Our taxi driver was one of those people. He made sure we got to where we needed to go and also went so far as to help us in other areas to make sure we weren’t taken advantage of. He was a big help to us and we felt like he watched out for us.
7. Did you see the Gospel at work?
- We really did not have a lot of time only being there for a week, but seeing ‘B’ interact with the students during “Study Group” was the closest thing to seeing the gospel being presented and working.
8. Did you guys cultivate any relationships while you were there?
- We really didn’t have a lot of time to build deep relationships with anyone but we really got to know ‘J’ and ‘H’who were both co-workers with ‘B’.
9. How can we pray better for ‘B’ and her coworkers? In addition, how can we pray that the gospel spread in East Asia?
- Please pray for ‘B’s heart. She isn’t bullet proof and still feels homesick at times and lonely. Its easy to forget that she as a person needs prayer just as much as she needs it as a missionary.
- Pray for her mission as well. That God would continue to provide for her and her team.
- Pray for the contacts that she is meeting with on a regular basis. That through her, Jesus would be seen and believed in.
- Pray for her coworker’s health. They have had a hard time with sickness since she has been there. Also pray for them as people and that God would meet their personal needs just as much as their spiritual needs.
- Pray for this country in East Asia… that they would be open-minded to the Gospel and Jesus. That Jesus would open the hearts of the people to be receptive to his grace.
- Lastly, pray for workers to go and serve there, especially women. There vast majority of people in the area are women. Pray that God would raise up women who are worthy of the call of Christ to go and join Him in this country.
10. What was your favorite part of the trip?
- Our favorite part of the trip had to be getting to touch our child again! We also enjoyed certain landmarks. It was amazing being able to set foot on something that is older than the pyramids! Getting to see ‘B’ in her city was also one of the best parts of the trip. We got to see her interacting with people that she was called to serve and for a week, we got to interact with them as well. Joining them in meals and doing life with them for a time.