Saturday, February 18, 2017

Begin Again

Hello, I am Yanna Wertz and this is my second year serving with VOICE Missions. I have been teaching in Taitung, Taiwan for a year and a half. 

Through teaching and serving in Taiwan I have learned not to depend on your comfort zone. Things will change and we have to learn how to embrace it and be open minded. Coming back for my second year of teaching was not as easy as I had expected it to be. Last year I had developed friendships with the local university students and had enjoyed teaching them English as well as them teaching me Chinese. Little was I aware of what awaited me as I returned to what I thought was "comfortable". 

The friends I had spent a lot of time with last year graduated from university and moved back to their hometown, or got jobs in other counties around the island. I felt very disappointed and frustrated because I had spent a lot of time building trust and friendships with them, especially  since I was from a different culture and language and building trust took a while. 

When I returned I thought,"Now what am I gonna do, this city is small and less then 1% could even speak, much less understand, English!"  Little did I know of God's plan. About a few weeks into getting settled back into my location and teaching, my teammate and I ran into, what we found out, were exchange students who were living in our city. We exchanged a few words and I thought the chances of meeting them again were very small. However, about a few weeks after that I happened to run into them at the mall. I started to get to know them better and found myself spending time with them, as they were new to Taiwan. I began teaching them more of the Taiwanese culture as well as the language. 

All of us were all quite diverse, from our ages to our background to our culture. Two were from Mexico, one from Brazil, one from France and then one from America (the one I could relate to the most). Talk about diversity! We were quite the crazy group of foreigners. I have always enjoyed meeting people from different cultures and here was a good opportunity to not only be a witness to them but also get to better understand people from different parts of the world. 

It is amazing how when we feel like there is nothing, God just proves how much He cares for His children. He doesn't disappoint, rather wants us to not be comfortable and have flexibility and a learning attitude. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to meet these exchange students and through them I was able to meet more people. I thank God for His grace and mercy toward us even when we complain or feel like there is nothing hopeful in our future. 

~Yanna Wertz

Yanna is serving with VOICE Missions in Taitung County. She is from Maryland and loves to play basketball, make new friends and dance.  One thing that God has taught her during her time in Taiwan is that God never gives up and always gives us second chances.