It’s hard to describe the VOICE conference to people who’ve never been before, but perhaps the farewell video that team leader David Lukachick prepared for VOICE2012 will give you a taste of what this past month has been like for all of us. (Thank you, David!)
It was a wonderful experience. I went to a host family with Alex, Jerry, Jesse, and Erik. The family consisted of six people, including three boys and a girl. They were really kind and took us to an amazingly big swimming pool which had a diving board, water basketball, and a slide. There were a lot of Americans. After that, we went back to their house, which was so beautiful and big that we could even play soccer in their yard. The kids were so cute and outgoing. And they made BBQ hamburgers and hot dogs for us. At the end, we gave them the gifts we prepared. It was a great day.
I think I will miss everyone I met at VOICE. However, I think I will miss Lingo the most. We met each other in the airport, and in the morning, we found we had everything in common. We talked a lot and learned many things from each other. Though we are all from Taiwan, we may not see each other very often. Beside Lingo, I will also miss Ada, Andy, and Grace. They have been very kind, and have helped me very much. I will miss Rumi, Vivian, Big Esther, Small Esther, Donna, Lili, Meggie, Brianne, Celia, Christina, and Serene. I am very grateful that God helped us to meet each other in Voice.
Dear Friends and Family, We are enjoying our time at the Northwoods. We do not have strong enough internet to upload a lot of pictures, but we will be posting occasional pictures on “The VOICE Conference” Facebook page. For now, here is one after Saturday evening’s musical performance. The students did a wonderful job!
I love my team and feel comfortable with them. At the beginning, our team was very quiet during team devotions, everyone seemed so passive. But now we’re all like sisters. Our first team leader Grace L. went home because of her sickness. She told us her story and encouraged us before she left for home. And Ada is our new team leader now. We still pray for Grace every night.
Ada printed some cards that said “ I’m grateful for…” and “I see God in….” Every night when we have team prayer we have to answer one special question and pick one of the cards and share them with everybody. Then we fold the card into the shape of a heart. It is very complex. We put all of our hearts into a box filled with grateful hearts for the end of the conference. Besides the routine, sometimes we take turns to translate for Andy, because there is only one American on our team. I think it is a good way to practice English too. Thanks, God for giving me such a great team.
We have a very important class in the morning everyday. I think the lessons are very important for me. The classes teach me about having a relationship with God. “The relationships with parents and family,” has been a big part of Mr. Gothard’s talk. I learned a lot of things from Mr. Gothard. This has helped me a lot.
After the class this morning, I leaned about four spirits. They are, a reverent spirit, a grateful spirit, a servant’s spirit, and the last one is a quiet spirit. I think the servant’s spirit is important for me. The Bible says, “If you want to be a leader, first you have to be a servant.” That is so important for me. And I think I need a quiet spirit, because I always worry about everything, and that makes me feel fear. But one thing I should know is, “God is omnipotent.” I shouldn’t worry about anything. Because God already prepared everything for me. God is real.
We visited an American family on Sunday afternoon. This family had six kids; four girls and two young boys. Their home was very big and beautiful. They were very kind and we had a good time. We played with their two young boys. They were so cute that we just couldn’t stop playing with them. We also had a wonderful dinner and perfect conversation with the family. Oh, thank you God. Everything was just so wonderful. I will remember that day forever. I hope I will have a chance to meet this family again in the future.
Thanksgiving is a festival celebrated throughout America every year. It originated when the Mayflower first arrived in America and the pilgrims were unable to grow any crops until Squanto, a native American, taught them how to grow crops. The first Thanksgiving happened when the first crops were harvested and the ravenous pilgrims feasted with their harvest. I could imagine the great joy they experienced and the overwhelming feeling of relief shining in bright smiles on their faces. Although I failed to express the same amount of joy yesterday at the feast, I was still very glad for the food. I liked how we got a background story on Thanksgiving and the buffet was quite good. All but the cake with white topping, and the cornbread muffin tasted delicious.
I was almost afraid my stomach would explode out of fullness. I really liked how we had to think of something we were thankful for before we ate the candy corn, and the flamboyant Thanksgiving tree with numerous leaves of thanks because many often celebrate Thanksgiving for the food and forget the meaning behind it. They forget that Thanksgiving is a time for each person to thank God for everything that He did for them, whether good or bad, and that they must remember the main focus of this festival is not on the delicacies, which includes the mouthwatering pumpkin pie and the juicy turkey dipped in chicken, but on the Lord. We often go on in our lives without stopping to thank God for everything we have for we view them as things God must give to us, when they really aren’t. Thanksgiving works as a great reminder to us to remember to praise and thank God for everything he has done for us. I’m looking forward to see how we celebrate the other festivities as it truly interests me how Americans celebrate their holidays!
In Voice, Jerry is a fun, interesting person. I didn’t know he had a sad childhood until today. I cried when I heard his story because it was not only touching, but it also made me think about my past. When I was 4 years old, my parents divorced. At that time, my younger sister was just 2 years old. I remember crying every day in the first year that they divorced. I kept complaining and asking God “Why? Why did this happen to me? I don’t understand your plan.” But now, when I look at my past, I’m very thankful. Because of my different childhood, I’m more independent than other classmates. I believe that God has his own plan. He will use me just as he used Jerry.
Before yesterday, I was starving every meal. When I heard Valentino say that the Thanksgiving dinner would have turkey, I was very excited and looked forward to eating it. Before dinner, we had to chose our table by drawing a card. I got “Delight.” It means feelings of great pleasure.
On the table we got five pieces of candy and one wish card. We had to think about one thing before we eat each piece of candy so we wrote about 5 things we were grateful for. We wrote them on the wish card and put it on the tree. We took a lot of pictures during the night and had a lot of fun after dinner. We played games and listened to the story about “死光頭” (Squanto.)