When Family Visits

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by Daniel Gee

When family visits, isn’t it more about the people than what we do together? Sure, we could shoot some hoops, but it’s really only fun because Uncle always brags about his jump shot and makes none of them. And sure, the apple pie (or naw mai fan) is delicious, but only because Pao Pao made it, and somehow it tastes better each year. That’s because when family visits, it’s all about family. And visiting is just what family does.        

In early July, the East Asia team had the joy of being able to visit family, but this time it was family separated by over 7000 miles and a different language. Nonetheless, this family was expecting us. For weeks, months, and perhaps for some the entire year, the children of Radiant Hope and Grace Vessel look forward to seeing their friends from America. And it’s probably not because they can’t wait for another craft time, or just want another “airplane ride.” Jerry told us that this was the power of permanence. It’s the fact that we aim to come back every year. We saw that in their eyes as we laughed and hugged and sang. They wait for us because they know we love them, and they love us.           

But really, we were simply joining in with the work that God was already doing through our brothers and sisters in East Asia. As we learned about the mission of both Radiant Hope and Grace Vessel, we began to understand just how needed their ministry is, not just in these kids’ lives, but for the entire country. As an example, at Radiant Hope, not only are these children orphans, but they are HIV positive. They are truly the marginalized of the marginalized. But in a world of darkness that undoubtedly wishes these children just didn’t exist, the light of Christ shines brightly. Radiant Hope offers Christian care that not only helps these kids survive, but flourish.

There is simply too much to say here. From crafts, to skits, to testimony sharing, to English lessons, to Jerry Mar’s solo singing performance, the East Asia team was humbled to be a part of the work God is doing across the globe. But what’s more, we were blessed to be among family, and we are thankful to return, again, to family. Thank you Evergreen Church family for your support and prayer. May the Lord bless us as we labor together and pray, “Thy Kingdom Come.”