Many Transitions at a Time
It’s been quite an adventure since the beginning of the year 2019.
In January, I was able to celebrate New Years in a place I had never been before. We celebrated birthdays in our team as we were on outreach in East Asia. We graduated from DTS (Discipleship Training School) and had to say “see you later” to my DTS classmates, with whom I had grown very close to during the past half year. Also sent off my sister to the city where she is currently studying Mandarin.
My mom and I spent time meeting up with brothers and sisters from Hong Kong. Many grew up in Venezuela and due to the current situation, they decided to move to Hong Kong and China. Some were traveling and it was amazing that we got to meet up over tea. The best time was when I was able to meet up with many brothers and sisters in a small space, we were about 20 people, we praised God, joyfully sang out songs about the Lord and about how special it is to have fellowship!
Hearing testimonies of how God had been faithful to each family was beautiful! I felt like crying the whole time. Truly, all of us miss living in Venezuela so much. We miss our churches. We miss our families. We miss our daily lives. We miss those moments. God has been incredibly at hand for the past 35 years since the Chinese churches were planted in Venezuela. The Chinese believers in Venezuela are so close to each other, we really think of each other as family. But God is sending us out and we continue to trust Him.
For me personally, as of right now, I have not been living in a home, but moving from place to place. So it’s been challenging emotionally at times, but really full of joy because throughout this year, I got to see so many people I hadn’t seen for the longest time.
At the beginning of the year, I was burying my feet in the sand beaches in Goa, India, to then squeeze through the crowded places of Hong Kong, to now flying all the way to the sunny state of Florida. My purpose of coming back to visit was to connect with my familia from Iglesia Familiar. They have been my family for the past 5 years! I grew in my faith, trained in missions, was part of the student ministry, all through Family Church. My walk with God was strengthened during my university years, and this family has been a huge impact in my life.
For a brief moment, I was able to share a short testimony of what God in my life during DTS. Pastor DaSilva introduced me to those who were new at church, those who I hadn’t met before in the past year. In one Sunday, I was able to reconnect with a lot of brothers and sisters. Obviously, the time was too short, but it filled my heart with joy.
Basically, in the past 2 months, I was able to meet up with different communities in such a short time. Some people whom I grew up with in Venezuela that I hadn’t seen in many years, and people who invested in my life during the time I decided to walk with Jesus as his disciple.
Now my next stop is home. Venezuela. And it’s currently like this.
April 30th, 2019: I woke up around 5:00am, getting ready to go to the airport, and on my phone, I see pictures of opposition leaders Juan Guaido and Leopoldo Lopez (shocked that Lopez was there, who had been on home arrest the past 2 years), they were calling all Venezuelan military soldiers to come to the side of freedom and democracy. My eyes were glued to social media all the way to the airport, even at the check in line, seeing if the information I was reading was real. News and media has been controlled by the Venezuelan government, so it’s hard to get real news, so we really depend on social media and forwarded messages through whatsapp. Obviously, my flight got cancelled with all that happened during that morning.
I couldn’t believe what was happening. Truly, military men were going to Guaido’s side, to defend and protect the people of Venezuela. Many videos were posted of young military men saying that they had also been suffering and they couldn’t stand it anymore. Those with uniforms and blue bandanas were now on the democratic side. With all this happening, my dad still opened the business (what the heck dad!) but thank God nothing happened to him.
What touched my heart the most was seeing civilians shake hands and give high fives to the military who were fighting against the socialist government. I grew up with a lot of anger and resentment against the military in Venezuela, especially those that constantly bullied the Chinese immigrant families, they are funny stories now but at that time, it was pretty challenging to face the military. Ugh, it was difficult to respect them and see them as authority. But now I saw their bravery, courage to stand up for our country.
We will continue to trust God, his plans and purposes for Venezuela. It definitely is a spiritual battle. In the unseen, there is a fight between God’s angel armies against the demonic forces. The physical reflects the spiritual atmosphere. As believers and disciples of Jesus, let’s do our part in fighting with prayer. Prayer really impacts the spiritual. I might not be the one throwing rocks or bombs during the protesting, but I want to be the one stand with my country with prayer.