Trip number 8 to China starts tomorrow. Wow. When I first went I didn’t think I would be making this many treks into the Red Dragon, but who knows what the future holds. My first trip I was part of a team that would be split into two teams. I would be leading one of those teams. The team had fifteen people on it. All of us would be entering into China for the first time. I had no idea what to expect. I was also humbled in leading the trip because I’d never been to China before. A few years prior I had made a criticism of someone leading an outreach trip because they were ignorant of various aspects and customs of the nation since it was their first trip into the nation. Now here I was in the same spot. I’ve never forgotten the feeling of irony I felt back then.
As the team was in Chicago getting ready to fly to Hong Kong I remember laying under some seats at our gate. I hadn’t felt fear or worry the entire time, but as we were getting ready to fly over I laid there just overwhelmed by it all. What laid ahead for a twenty-three year old leading a team into a closed country to do “work”. I laid there under the seats, late in the evening, and I just laughed. It was absurd what I was doing, which had me comforted to a degree. There was no other option but to trust God. It was a fantastic trip and remains my fondest out of all my sojourns to China.
I’m looking forward to this trip big time, though. A synergy of my past job, my Chinese friends/contacts and my current job. A perfect storm. Plus, the team I’m leading is phenomenal. There usually seems to be one individual on the team I’m concerned about dealing with on an international trip. Not on this team. They have all been servants, team players and committed throughout the entire process leading up to the trip. Could that change once we land in China? It’s possible, but I doubt it.
And what about China? This recent article is a good read.