Peace in traveling

I traveled to London and Paris for 8 days this past week. Seeing the business of big cities is like going back to my hometown in Taipei ,Taiwan. In London, the workers in the tourist spots are gentle and understanding, without rushing but encouraging us to take our time.

In Paris, the cheese and vegetables are fresh. The desserts are not so sugar filled like in USA. So we enjoy it more.

However, the crowd on the subway in Paris made me nervous because I read about pocket lifters from YouTubers. So I watched the environment carefully around me and held my purse in front of me. But it happened too quickly without my notice. There was a white couple in the train standing in front of me. The man seemed to protect his pregnant wife with his hand on her shoulder so that I cannot go through between them. I felt pushed from behind so I couldn’t move anywhere.

After I retreated to a corner to get a spot to stand, I thought about this pregnant woman and offered her my spot for more space. She thanked me but didn’t move. Soon came the next stop and this couple were getting off. Before they exited the door, the woman turned her face to me and smiled at me, saying “Thank you” for my kind gesture to her.

Right after the crowd was gone, I looked down my purse and found the zipper was halfway opened. My heart sank and immediately checked if my smartphone was inside. I didn’t have cash or credit card in my purse, but the phone was essential to my trip with the airline boarding pass and the photos memory.

I was so relieved to find my phone was still safe in my purse. And I know Jesus listened to many people’s prayer for me to surround me with His angels.

On the streets we walked a lot, I noticed I sang songs softly from my mouth, which is not usual for me to do in my daily life. I feel the songs are the lullabies Jesus was singing to me and assured me “I am right here with you. Don’t worry.”

I tend to easily get nervous with small shocks. So I know this peace is beyond my personality or any psychological effect. Jesus said His peace for us is a gift that cannot be bought in the world. And I am so glad that Jesus Christ’s peace guards my heart to not be troubled, nor be afraid in any uncertain time or place. (Refer to John 14:27)









2019 Taiwan trip with spiritual lessons

April 9– Have a heart of empathy by being empathized first

Before departing to Taiwan, I hesitated to ask my Moms’ in Prayer (MIP) group to pray for my luggage to safely arrived with me to Taiwan because it seemed so trivial for prayer. However, after I shared my concern about two times of transferring at different airports, MIP sisters not only related to my worry but also were more than willing to pray for that. Their attitude of casting the burden to God through supplication quenched my anxiety. Their faith to God and care to the weak also warmly encouraged my heart.

After flying from MN to Detroit, we continued to fly to Korea for transfer. The airline counter called me up and confirmed our luggage has been safely transferred from Detroit airport. I felt God was so kind to give me a peace of mind to not worry about the luggage.

As I felt relieved, I noticed my husband, daughter and I didn’t sit together on the plane. The airline staff told me it’s ok to ask other passengers to switch the seats by ourselves. I prayed that someone would be willing. After we got on the airplane, my daughter’s seat was between two big men. She was so tiny and looked like being squeezed. I was on the right side of the plane with two other ladies by my side. My husband was on the other side with two other men by his side. I asked the man next to my daughter if he was ok to switch with me but he preferred the aisle seat. Then I asked the lady close to the window side but she didn’t like to sit between two men either.

My heart was a little bit down for thinking that my daughter would be alone for 13 hours with two strangers. I prayed to God. My husband waited for the passenger next to his seat to come and then asked him. The man sitting next to the window said that he can relate to our feeling because the same thing happened to his daughter too. He was kind to switch with my husband. So, I got to sit with my daughter but my husband went to sit with two ladies by his side.

I feel God wants me to empathize people by having me experienced being empathized first.

April 11–Get rid of ego by thinking about emptying ego?

We flew from Taipei to Peng-Hu island, my husband’s hometown. His family welcomed us with a big plate of crabs, which I thought about eating just before coming to Taiwan. God is so kind to fill my heart with joy before my asking.


I shared a true story about a Muslim couple who saw Jesus and converted to Christianity with my husband’s big sister. As a Buddhist, she was polite to listen but didn’t feel much interested. At lunch time, my husband’s older brother and his wife joined us. It’s not the first time we shared gospel with them. To my surprise, the couple mentioned their experiences similar to Christianity, like feeling peaceful or touched by reading the Buddhist scripture; or feeling their characters have been more mature after practicing their belief. Instead of preaching the gospel to them, I decided to ask them questions to understand their belief. The more I listened to them, I was convinced that Satan is telling them many lies.

Satan acts like a bad translator, adding many ambiguous ideas to the original plan created by God. They are caught with the lies so that they cannot see the truth. They are fooled by the appearance of the fool’s gold because they have no truth to identify the real gold.

In their belief, there’s no loving Father to restore the relationship with them, no assurance of going to heaven and no absolute truth to follow, but only self-reliance to try to be perfect. One of their confusion is that their ego is the center of their universe because they believe they can emit positive energy from their ego to change the situation; meanwhile, they often try to empty their ego to gain pure hearts. In my opinion, constantly thinking about emptying ego might be another trap of being egoistic. 

We could meditate on religious words and try to emptying ourselves. But the ego is still in the self because that’s the subject who meditates.
Old Ally in Peng-Hu


Cactus flower sorbet in Peng-Hu

April 13—Fight against the lies in Buddhism

We flew for 20 minutes to my hometown at Kaoshiung in southern Taiwan around noon. After being welcomed by my family, I set out to meet my high school classmate, Mei. I haven’t seen her for 30 years after graduation. But I learned about her survival of breast cancer last summer when I met with my other two high school classmates. That’s why I contacted her this time.

Her face looks the same as before but just becomes a little bit chubby. She rode a little motorcycle and decided to bring me to her house. When I went into the living room, a big table with the female Buddha image occupies one side of the room. I know there would be a battle.

I asked her about her life these years and she was very open to share. I also shared about my deliverance experience by God. I spent some time to go through the main things in Christianity using BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) booklet. With the knowledge about Buddhism I learned from my husband’s brother, I directly pointed out the myths in Buddhism.  

For example, Buddhism doesn’t tell people when they can be delivered to heaven—the world of extreme joy in their term; even no assurance after going through the six or seven rounds of reincarnation. However, Jesus Christ can deliver us from darkness to light, death to life once we believe in Him, who was sent by God to die for our sins and to resurrect from the death for our righteousness. I continue to tell her that our God is the heavenly Father, who is willing to suffer for His children, just like any earthly good parents would do. And that’s why God sent Jesus Christ, His only Son to bring heaven and salvation to us, which displays His great love.

I also mentioned about the power of Jesus Christ’s name, authority of prayer and the meaning of baptism. Finally, I emphasized on the credibility of Bible, which was written by more than 40 authors across the history of thousands of years. Taking myself working as a reporter as an example, I could have been easily make fake news if I was the only one who reported about a certain event. I learned that Buddha contemplated his thought and then one apprentice wrote it down. In my opinion, as far as Buddhism teaching is concerned, it’s from a personal philosophy and cannot represent the universal truth, which is like one plus one always equals two.

Mei cannot deny what I said. So I told her that if she cannot reject the truth, she can consider to accept the truth. Therefore, I asked her to pray the prayer on BSF booklet to confess her sin and acknowledge Jesus Christ. At that moment, Mei seemed to want to open her mouth to say the prayer, but she paused as something choked her from the chest. She looked at me and said she cannot pray. “It’s ok. Let me pray for you first.” I said. So I bound the evil spirit of rejecting God’s truth and released her spirit in Jesus Christ’s name as Jesus Christ taught in the Bible (Mark 3:27, Matthew 18:18).

Then Mei said the prayer on the BSF booklet. Just then, her husband woke up from the nap and got ready to go out to pick up their child from the school. She told me that her husband has been ill for more than ten years. In the end of our meeting, I prayed for her and her husband.

After two days, Mei texted me that she cannot leave Buddhism because Buddha helped her in the past. I told her that it’s ok and just let me know if she needs my prayer in the future.

In the beginning of our conversation, Mei told me that her parents didn’t die in peace and her older brother passed away before turning 50 years old. The continuous sadness overwhelmed her and then she was diagnosed with breast cancer. However, when she asked Buddha about her brother’s early death, she was told that it’s good for him to go to reincarnation and got out of this bitter life as soon as possible.

I feel compassionate for Mei and trust that God’s seed of life is planted somewhere in her heart. May God tear down the thorn choking her heart and bring forth that seed to life someday.

After coming back to USA, I sensed that there’s a spirit of fear in Mei and that’s why she doesn’t dare to leave Buddhism. I searched online and learned that Buddhism considered that gods and ghosts alike should be avoided. So I sent a message to Mei, informing her that our God is not the evil god mentioned in Buddhism; instead, our God is the Creator, who gives her life.

Pray for a lady with fear of eating meat

After Mei rode her motorcycle to bring me to the closest subway station, I rushed to the next stop to take the high speed train with my husband to go to Cha-Yi city to meet another couple.

Zhen and her husband received Jesus as their Savior when we visited them and shared gospel with them in our trip to Taiwan last summer. My husband strongly believed that Zhen’s husband will play an important role to pray for his wife’s healing. Zhen has been suffering with strange illness that no doctors really can find out the root problems. So we scheduled tonight to visit them again and wanted to encourage Zhen’s husband Chin. They kindly treated us dinner and Chin did open up more to share his childhood stories.

My husband found opportunity to share the story about Jesus (refer to John 6:21) who walked on the water toward the disciples. And the Bible said that when the disciples were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading. My husband encouraged Chin to have faith on Jesus, who can heal his wife and bring them through the roaring water to the safe shore.

While we were still eating, Zhen mentioned that why she could not eat meat but seafood. She recalled that when she was in school age, one day she saw a man riding on a bike, carrying a bleeding pig which was cut into half on the back seat. The dripping blood left such a dramatic impact in Zhen’s heart. When she arrived home, she told her mom that she decided that she would never eat pork.

Zhen gradually stops eating beef and other meat except fish. I recalled that disgusting feeling in my stomach when I ate beef in my husband’s home days ago. I wonder if there’s a spirit of disgusting meat in my mother-in-law’s house because she often fasts from eating meat due to her Buddhist practice.

Zhen recently moved to another town with her husband. And the nearby market makes pork sausage in the early morning. Zhen feels extremely disgusted with the smell. I know she needs to be delivered from the spirit of fear which got into her when she saw that bleeding dead pig as a child. However, we almost missed our train to go back to Kaoshiung. So my husband and I quickly prayed for her in the train station. I continue to pray that God will deliver her soon.

A boat without an anchor would be shipwrecked in the storm.

While listening to my husband sharing about Jesus’ disciples taking Him into their boat and they immediately reached the shore, I see there is a big contrast with the Buddhist teaching. My husband’s brother’s wife said that Buddhism is a tool like a boat to deliver people from this life to the other shore of heaven.

However, she also said this tool will disappear one day according to the Buddhist scripture. What a tragedy. If the boat would sink one day, and no one could be assured to get to the other shore due to going through unknown rounds of incarnation depending on your good behavior, doesn’t it imply that people on this boat would very possibly perish in the end? Isn’t that an important question to ask before getting on this hopeless boat of human religions?

On the contrary, our Savior, Jesus, is the anchor of our boat. In the midst of storm, when we take Him to our boat, He will hold us tight until the storm passes and we will find ourselves immediately reach the shore of peace.

April 14–Endure the hardship

Job’s suffering, Sunday’s sermon

The sermon this Sunday was about Job in the bible, who suffered from losing possession, children, and health.

Job endured the heavy pain to the degree of hating his life and wished he was never born. God didn’t tell Job why all the troubles happened to him. It could be that knowing the reason for the rational mind doesn’t necessarily give the sweet spiritual understanding about His love. In the end, the Sovereign God, the mighty Creator of the universe came down to meet Job face to face.

As Job got to hear God’s loving voice, Job’s eyes saw the radiant God (Job 42:5). In the presence of the awesome God, Job might felt so foolish that he considered himself to be qualified to ask God to explain Himself.

Besides, we don’t need to explain why people suffer on behalf of God. However, we learn the precious lesson from Job’s experience: our God is loving and faithful and worthy of our trust. He is the anchor of our boat waving in the roaring sea. When we fix our eyes on Him and trust His presence commands the victory for us in the spiritual war, we will not run away or retreat from the battle line; instead, we become strong to embrace the hardship for knowing it will bring us great reward. Just like Job,  “Lord made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before.” (Job 42:10), we will reap spiritual blessing with songs of joy by sowing the seed with tears (Psalm 126:5).

Our reward after the hardship is not only in this life, but lasts to eternal life. As Jesus promises to those who believe in Him will live and will never die. (refer to John 11:25-26) Therefore, remember to praise God and thank God, as God’s will for us, is the powerful weapon to fight against despair and anxiety. And trusting God’s righteousness and love shall not open the door for Satan to deceive us to give up on ourselves.

How to develop the endurance for the hardship?

The Bible teaches us the secret of the victorious saints who “triumphed over the devil by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.” (Revelation 12:11) Therefore, let’s open our mouths to proclaim that Jesus’ blood which covers us and our testimony to the gospel , along with a free will of crucifying our old-self to die with Jesus.

Shared gospel with a young couple

After church and Hakka-flavor lunch, we went to a French pastry cafe to meet a couple who finished graduate school in U of Minnesota and moved back to Taiwan for living close to their family. We asked about their work and life as a newlywed.

Then my husband and I respectively shared gospel with the young husband David and his wife Judy. Judy told me that her grandmother was a Catholic and asked me if a Christian can worship ancestors.  It’s a pity that the cafe was too busy to allow us to sit longer. So the couple gave us a ride and we prayed for them in the car before saying goodbye. May God continue to grow the seed of gospel in their hearts.

April 15–Jesus never says no to the humble who come to Him. It’s my job to ask God for help. It’s God’s job to answer in His best will for me.

We took high speed train to Taipei for about 1.5 hours compared with the greyhound bus with 4 hours. My husband spent five days in Taipei for a meeting with a group of Taiwanese Americans from USA, sponsored by Taiwanese government.

I read Psalm 130:5, 7-8 this morning:

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in the word I put my hope.”

“Put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with Him is full redemption. He Himself will redeem Israel (you) from all your sins.”

My husband shared the familiar Bible verses with me from Luke 11:5-8 and Luke 18:1-7 about perseverance in prayer. His divine insight is that Zhen’s husband will play an important role to pray for his sick wife’s healing.

But the Holy Spirit uses the verses to encourage me: Jesus never says no to the people who come to plead with Him. Jesus told his disciples two stories: the hesitant man who wakes up in the midnight to respond to his friend’s audacious knocking on the door; and the unjust judge who finally avenged for the persistent widow. What is Jesus’ point?

He wants to assure us one thing: Jesus is much kinder and nicer than those earthly people who are not perfect but still give help. Therefore, come to God with humility to ask for help. I am also reminded by Nehemiah who worked with one hand and held a weapon with the other (refer to Nehemiah 4:17). I want to pray and write for building the wall of kingdom, instead of listening to enemies and feeling despair by their threatening lies.

Moreover, our persistent prayer might be God’s way to refine and test our faith because God always works everything for good to those who love Him (refer to Romans 8:28). Therefore, my job with a given privilege as God’s child is to submit to God’s way and pray in His will. And it’s God’s job to consider my welfare and complete His work of my faith and others’.

April 16–Enter God’s holy place by His grace, not by my work in flesh.

My daughter helped me with direction on the map as I told her the Chinese names on the sign. We walked out of the subway station, through narrow allies, being squeezed to wait for taxi passing by our side, finally came to the bookstore I read on the magazine.

The bookstore is open on the top (2nd) floor in one of the array of antique houses. There is a flower-carved iron casement door with right-side door open halfway in the first floor, leading up to the store with narrow stairs. I looked at the open space in the doorway and thought: is this place only for people who are thin enough to get in?

Books cafe in Taipei

While I was thinking it’s hard for my trunk to pass through, my daughter pushed the left-side of the door and open up bigger entrance. How embarrassed I felt and laughed to myself.

However, isn’t that Christians often think about themselves: I am not good enough, hard-working enough, or faithful enough, etc. to enter God’s holy place. Until we push the door of grace, probably getting some help from other saints, we learn that we can come to God with confidence, setting aside all the self-judging rules, but only with confession of my weakness and desire to come to Him.

April 17–Plant the seed of gospel to a couple

The buffet style breakfast in the historic and inexpensive Howard Hotel is beyond my imagination. I got to eat everything only in my memory: steam meat bun, salty white carrot cake, fresh guava and starfruit, etc.  I noticed the restaurant prepares the grapes by cutting each one from the stem to wash it thoroughly. No wonder this hotel has good reputation for its restaurants.

Howard Hotel in Taipei

After breakfast, my daughter and I set out to the 105-year-old Taipei Zoo. The admission ticket costs only $2. My daughter was excited to see pandas, red panda, otters, penguins, even elephants for the first time, and many other creatures.

Panda in Taipei Zoo
Elephants in Taipei Zoo
Penguins in Taipei Zoo

There’s a gondola transporting visitors up to the mountain called Mao-Kong where grows tea plants. We got to the top of the mountain and were surprised with several food stands and cafes.

Gondola in Mao-Kong
Mao Kong view
Gondola stations

My daughter asked for a tea-flavored ice cream with a cat-shape cookie made of green tea on the top. Why cat-shape cookie? It’s because Mao-Kong is written with two Chinese characters: “cat (Mao)” and “empty (Kong)”. The name of this place derives from the pothole topography, which the local people describe it as “many small holes” in Taiwanese, which sounds similar to “cat empty” in Mandarin Chinese.

Pothole topography in Mao-Kong
Light Oolong-tea flavored ice cream

My daughter and I skipped the restaurants with tea-flavored dishes but went to the food stands for enjoying small delicacy like oyster-egg pancake, steam rice topped with braised pork, and stinky fried tofu. I was also excited to find the sugar-coated plum on the stick, my childhood snack, and proudly introduced it to my daughter as I often told her about it. She loves it!

Sugar-coated plum on a stick

Tonight we met a couple and their 11-year-old son in the Brothers’ Hotel for dim-sum. They moved back from MN to Taiwan around 13 years ago. In the busy restaurant, we chatted to catch up the years we missed each other. Later at night, only two tables of guests remained in the restaurant and the surrounding became quiet, I noticed we have started to share gospel with them. The husband listened quietly with interest. We believed the seed of truth has been planted that night and we prayed to God for leading them out of fear and into the confidence in Jesus in His time.

I arranged to meet a young lady as my son’s age. She is my college classmate’s daughter. I felt compassionate for her when I know her parents divorced while she was little. She is a well-behaved lady and wants to please her parents by doing her best. I prayed for her and told her to seek the true God when she wants to know the meaning of her life.

April 18–Earthquake. Shine your little light to the world.

After shopping in the department store, my daughter and I went into the subway station and planned to visit a cat cafe. Before getting on the subway, the security guards asked people to leave the underground station immediately. I was puzzled until I received my husband’s text: are you ok?

From the broadcast, I learned that a magnitude 6 earthquake just happened. The epicenter was in Hualien in Eastern Taiwan, where I visited last summer. The magnitude 4 aftershock rippled to Taipei basin, as the biggest one in the recent ten years. There were totally 17 people hit by falling objects and a few cracking in an old building in Taipei. I felt the protection of God through prayer.

I recalled that on September 21, 1999, the earthquake in Taiwan caused more than two thousands people’ death. I was in Taipei and felt the strong shaking on the 4th floor. On September 11, 2001, the terrorists hijacked the airplane to crash into the Twin Towers in New York City. I was notified  to pick up my preschooler from school in upper Manhattan.

I remember that I was confused while rushing to the school. Both times, I was kept safe with the presence of God, my Prince of Peace. What a precious gift for Christians to entrust our lives in the almighty God’s hand when the unexpected crisis hit.

It’s close to lunch time. We walked a little distance from the station and chose a ramen restaurant.

Ramen shop

The staff kindly helped us order from the vending machine outside of the store for printing out meal ticket (this is also common in ramen shop in Japan). Since I was not hungry, I asked if I can just order one meal. The staff smiled and said yes.

While sitting in the restaurant, I tried to figure out the bus route to go to the cat cafe because I only know the way by subway. After two hours, the staff said the subway station was reopened so we went back to take the subway to go to the cat cafe for the afternoon tea.

Cat cafe in Taipei

At night, we visited the night market with my parents who came to Taipei from other city about 1.5 hour driving away. We tried a few small snacks and felt satisfied.


Ning-Xia Night Market
Rose garden in Hsiang-Shan, Hsin-Chu city
Yang Ming Mt with Calla Lily field
Calla Lily

After leaving the night market, I wanted to visit Da-An Forest Park in the city near the hotel I stayed because the website says there’s fireflies in the park.

We finally found parking place and walked into the park. Many people came to jog or exercise. I looked carefully but could not find any fireflies. How can such a busy city have fireflies? My dad asked a local residence feeding street cats in the park. She told us that there’s a little creek around the corner, where the fireflies are restored. We went there and searched.

While I bent down to look for the firefly, I saw one little light shining in the far distance. To my surprise, this firefly was not just blinking its light, but energetically emitting light as best as it can.

I was not only thankful for God to satisfy me by showing me this “only one” firefly but also inspired by His message: shine your light in the world. No matter how little you consider your light is, it’s visible even from far distance with one condition: darkness. I was greatly encouraged and asked God to give me this energetic motivation to shine forth His light through me to the dark world.

Da-An forest park, photo credit by TaipeiTravel

April 21–Choose the tree of life. Share gospel in the college class reunion.

The Easter Sunday sermon in Taipei’s church focused on Isaiah 53:3-8 about God has laid on Jesus the iniquity of us all. The pastor defines the death in a human: A person judges self and God by his/her self-centered knowledge.

When Eve and Adam chose to eat the fruit for having knowledge like God, their rebellious hearts were against having God’s way of life. As a result, they separated themselves from God, which is death, spiritually and then physically.

If the time could have been reversed, if Eve would have chosen to refuse eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge but chosen to eat the fruit from the tree of life, her eyes would have been enlightened to discern Satan’s lie. However, after the fall, as Adam and Eve’s descendants, humans were born as blind and naturally they cannot feel the joy of having spiritual eyesight.

I once interviewed a blind man from Taiwan, who came to USA to compete in the blind baseball game. He said that people often feel pity for him to be born blind but he said that he actually doesn’t feel that bad because he never knows what it feels like to be able to see.

That’s the condition of unbelievers who don’t know how much they miss the restored joy with their Creator and Heavenly Father. I feel great compassion to them by recalling my own spiritual blindness when I didn’t know the true God.

Hostel in Taipei we stayed. We love it.

After the church service, the brothers and sisters pray for us because we would host a reunion for our college classmates this afternoon.

We arrived at the event location earlier and met one of our college classmates, who received Jesus as her Savior a few years ago. She was kind to come to pray with us. She told me that she visits different churches these years and observes there are different focuses on doctrines in each church like emphasizing on truth teaching, God is love, and spiritual power of the Holy Spirit.

I agree that her observation reveals the reality of the churches nowadays. I personally stay in the same church for more than ten years. But my personal spiritual journey, guided by the best Teacher, the Holy Spirit, went through from doctrines about truth teaching, spiritual power experienced in the deliverance ministry, and then God is love through my personal encounter with God.

Therefore, I appreciate all the stages God leads me through because I learn more about God in each stage. In my opinion, if there’s a completely perfect church, it may include all of these three elements: God’s word, God’s love and God’s power.

My college in Hsin-Chu city

Emotional burden breaks out to depression and physical illness.

In the college class reunion, 20 people came and each of our classmates shared about their lives. One man said two of his co-workers have died of overwork. He felt the urgency to come to meet his friends in college in case it’s too late. Several men shared the fun memory in college and brought laughter to everyone.

Three of our classmates who came to the reunion are Christians. One of them shared honestly about his journey of being rebellious to parents, hard time of getting a child, and the cancer treatment for his wife, who suddenly died of acute leukemia within one day. These hardship brought him to know God.

The last classmate shared his personality and frustration along the young years. His past emotional burden finally caused depression and physical dysfunction. After long time of treatment, he pursues Chinese herbal medicine and he agrees that most of illness is rooted in mental and emotional issues as I told him that the joyful heart is the good medicine mentioned in the Bible. He said he felt not belonging when he goes to the church. We hope to continue to pray for him and may God grant him peace for his soul.

Mailboxes in Taipei bent by Typhoon in 2015. Near the hostel we stayed.
Hsin-Den city

April 23–Every day is a good day. Teaching is another way of learning.

“On a rainy day, listen to the rain with your whole being.

On a snowing day, gaze at the snow.

In summer, feel its heat.

In winter, feel its coldness.

Every day is a good day.”

The poem is from the Japanese movie I watched on the airplane, called “Every day is a good day.”

Japanese movie: Every day is a good day.

The main theme is living at the moment. The story is about a young lady who doesn’t have particular direction to pursue for her life. One day, she was asked to go to the class for traditional Japanese tea ceremony (Sado) by her older sister.

After a few years of learning Sado, she gradually appreciated more about it. The teacher often asks the young lady to observe from the painting, calligraphy or nature. More than ten years passed by, she grew mature with patience and confidence. The aging teacher finally told her to consider to teach Sado to others because teaching is another way of learning.

The Chinese idiom, “Teaching and learning grows together.” conveys the same idea. My spiritual journey is like this lady learning Sado. In the beginning, I was immature and impatient. I often worried if I was a good Christian and tried in my flesh to obey God’s commands but felt more frustrated. However, God’s mercy is new each morning. God reminds me:

“Some things are quickly understood. Other things take time to understand. The things are easily understood only need to go through once. But those other things, you can only understand them little by little through time.” said in the movie.

I am thankful that God gives me time to learn those things which are hard to understand, little by little, day after day, season after season, over and over again. Then one day, I find that I move on to another stage of life to learn more about God by serving others to know Him.

Cherry blossom in Ueno park, Tokyo
Asakusa, Tokyo

Read God’s love letters every morning.

Talking about learning spiritual lessons over and over again, another Japanese movie called “The 50th first kisses” serves a good metaphor to describe my spiritual struggle.

Japanese movie: the 50th first kiss

After a terrible car accident, the female protagonist suffers the brain injury and only can remember things on that day and then forgets all about it after waking up the next day. The male protagonist falls in love with her but cannot gain her trust to love him because she forgets all about him the next day.

After pursuing her for a long time, the man found a solution to remind her who he is by recording a DVD to show her each morning. In the video, he tells her who he is, what he knows about her, how much he loves her, etc. Finally, the lady trusts him enough to let him kiss her and she always shouts, “The first kiss is amazing” day after day.

I feel I also have “short term memory loss” in my spiritual learning. For example, I have been organizing the summer camp for five years now. But every year I feel uncertain about many things from inviting the teacher, searching for the location, to finding students, etc.

It seems that I didn’t remember how God always provides and comes through for me and I always feel so joyful during the camp and never regrets to do it after the camp. But the degree of being panic is getting less over the years like this female protagonist.

In the movie, the female protagonist keeps a diary about her lover so that she wants to break up with the man for supporting him to go after his own dream in another place. She rejects him by burning up the diary she keeps about him. However, after they break up, she sees his face in her dreams at night. Then she paints his face on the canvas day after day.

I am wondering: when humans reject God, their conscience still remind them about their Creator. That’s why they create religions to worship gods. However, this loving God pursues us patiently and give us His love letters in the Bible to remind us who He is, how much He loves us and what He knows about us.

Each morning, I love to come to read His loving words and fall in love with Him again. Even though I might have short term spiritual memory loss, thank God for His loving letters written in the Bible and in my heart through the Holy Spirit.

The movie has a happy ending.