Our trip to X-Town went very well! All of the long term people were there and we had a wonderful time! Thank you for your prayers! They worked and I am still alive because of them! We had a small, life-threatening adventure while in X-Town. Located in a park in X-Town is the largest synchronized fountain show in all of Asia, possibly the world (don’t quote me on that. A random Asian person told me that). The best part is that the show is free (this never happens here)!
One night, a large group of us decided to go see the fountain show. Afterward, four of us decided to take a taxi home, since the bus stop was a few blocks away, but for some reason, none of the taxis would stop for us! So, we decided to take a tuk tuk. Tuk tuks have a bicycle on the font and a little cart behind that can seat four people. Most of them are run on batteries, and therefore are very slow and quite safe, but this one apparently had a homemade motor of some sort because it was really fast! The driver was crazy!
We started out fairly decently, but soon our ride descended into sheer chaos! We got stuck behind slow traffic on a six-lane road, so the driver whipped over into the oncoming traffic! There was a huge dump truck bearing down on us at full speed blowing his air horn which easily drowned out the puny tuk tuk horn. It was rather like a chihuahua trying to frighten an enraged grizzly bear, or the most terrifying game of chicken! Neither the truck driver nor the tuk tuk driver was willing to budge an inch! Finally, at the last second, the truck swerved into the next lane and missed us by inches! At last we swerved back into the correct lane of traffic and spent the rest of the ride frantically swerving around slow cars, buses, and pedestrians while nearly overturning, since our cart only had three wheels. I was convinced we were going to be seriously maimed or die! Finally, we arrived back at our hostel! Surprisingly, all in one piece, although we may bear some psychological scars from the experience! As for me, I am done with tuk tuks for a long, long time! Needless to say, your prayers were greatly, greatly appreciated and were very effective!
This week marks the end of the first month of language study! It has been both exhausting and wonderful. In the past two weeks, my ability to communicate has improved drastically! I am actually able to communicate some thoughts and ideas that don’t involve my love of fried rice and dumplings! My reading, writing, and listening are also noticeably better! Overall, speaking is my weakest point right now. For the next month, my tutor and I are going to be putting more focus in that area.
Right now, I am part of two Asian fellowships. In one, we are reading through the book of John, so this past week, I decided to start studying it in my new language during the week so that I can actually understand what is going on during the fellowship. I was pleasantly surprised! I read John 5 totally in my new language (no English), and I understood most of what I was reading! My study of characters is paying off! So, yesterday at the fellowship, I decided to surprise them! We usually go around and each person reads a verse, when it was my turn, I read mine totally in my new language! They could not believe it! They were so excited, as was I! Yesterday was also the first time that I have actually been able to participate in the discussion in some small way. I understood a lot of what people were saying and I was actually able to speak up and participate in the conversation! It is so exciting to be able to participate and not have to sit silently!
As I said at the beginning, your prayers are greatly appreciated and they have more effect than you may realize!
In the next few weeks, I am trying to balance out my life a little. This past month, language study took so much of my time an energy that I had none left for G0d, family, updates, emails… I’m sure you have noticed the last two. 🙂 I want to make sure study doesn’t encroach on these other things which are also important to me. If you could be praying for me in this area that would be great! Thank you!