Monday, November 5, 2018

When God Comes Through

Recently I was sick and feeling quite weak.  I had told friends, "I look forward to sharing how God shows up!" but I didn't exactly know what that would look like.  I just knew that He would do some amazing things...

Well, the next afternoon I started losing my voice!  This certainly wasn't part of my plan.  Initially, I had just imagined myself super tired from being sick.  I had imagined myself running around, very busy with classes.   That's all.  I certainly hadn't thought of the possibility that my voice for teaching would be gone.

Wednesday morning before class, I couldn't get much out besides a croak that sounded like a frog.  I wanted to tell God that this wasn't something that could happen.

Something my former youth pastor told me awhile back stuck with me.  He said that when you're in a position where you desperately need God to show up, that's when God delights to do so.  I remembered this and told God, "Okay, God, here's the thing.  I can't talk.  So You're gonna have to do this."

As my students came pouring in for our 8AM class, I smiled, took a deep breath and opened my mouth.  I didn't sound like my normal self but - I could talk!  Surprised, I began to grin.  God had this.

Then before my next class, my voice was gone again.  Again, "God, You have to do this."  Then as class started, I suddenly was able to speak again.  It continued like this for every single class the whole week.  The moment before each class I didn't have a voice but just as class started, God would come through and I could talk!

Isn't it funny that even though I've experienced countless miracles over the years, I still wonder if God can really do this.  I find myself saying, "Actually, God, this looks impossible.  Can you really do this?!"

Yet, God delights in the impossible and He delights in reminding me that He can indeed take care of me.  He's got this.


Joanna Suich has been serving with VOICE Missions since February 2013.  As a child, she attempted to dig her way to China, but only made it two feet in before her mom called her to dinner.  Although Joanna never made it to China, God did bring her nearby to the island of Taiwan.  She has a heart for all things involving missions, juvenile delinquents and adventures.  God has placed Hualien in her heart and it's home now.  She currently is doing college online as she volunteers, majoring in social work.  If you're looking for Joanna, check the local village or orphanage and you'll probably find her there - playing, tutoring and sharing Christ's love and truth.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Don't Give Up

This English lesson that Gem teaches on the tortoise and the hare shares about having determination and not giving up

I often get asked whether or not what I do here really makes a difference. It’s only one week, how much can we really impact the children in such a short time? Can we really build the relationships necessary to change lives in just a handful of days? I remember early on in my time here in Taiwan one of the public school teachers talking to me after her students had spent a week at the Hualien school. She said, “I can see a difference in their lives. They really have changed.” But sometimes after watching camp after camp come and go it is easy to feel like the cycle never ends. I, too, start to wonder: does one week really make a difference?

This semester has had a difficult beginning. We started with two weeks in a row of challenging students (very active, very disruptive, very many after class talks about not talking in class, not leaving the classroom in the middle of class without permission, not fighting, etc.). We had hoped the third week would be what we call an “angel class” week, but it was not to be. In the camp meeting to prepare for the third week of camps, I noticed a notation in one student’s bio that had been translated “he takes people’s things.” I asked my coworker if the notation meant he was a thief. She wasn’t so sure as the Chinese version of the notes was equally vague - she surmised that probably he would teasingly grab something and hold it out of the reach of the person trying to get it back.

Near the end of the week, a pen went missing. It was later found in that student’s pencil case. Willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, the teachers asked if maybe he had borrowed the pen and forgotten to return it. He chose to be honest and admitted that he had stolen it. Apparently the pen was way cooler than any of the pens he owned and he really wanted a nice pen. The teachers talked with him, discussing with him not only why stealing is wrong, but also helping him plan strategies of how to resist the urge to steal things in the future. After the discussion, the pen was returned to the other student.

The teachers asked the other student if he would be willing to forgive the classmate who had stolen from him. He thought for a brief second and said, “The foreign teacher is always saying ‘Don’t give up’ and ‘try again’ so I am willing to forgive him and let him try again.”
This is Gem with one of the kids who attends Sunday school at the local church

Every week I get a new batch of students to pour His love into - and the week may not seem long enough to make a difference, but He knows what He’s doing. Sometimes, like in the case of the stolen pen, He lets me see a glimpse of what He’s doing. The five days are short, but it is plenty of time to sow the seeds of truth that He would have me plant. As they leave, I may or may not see them again, but He is still at work.

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Galatians 6:9


Originally from Chicago, Gabrielle Martin currently lives in Nantou, Taiwan. She has served with VOICE Missions for 4 years. She loves teaching English and entertaining her students with stories and songs. Her personal blog, sharing her adventures and things she's learned, can be found at

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Tears of Love

CEI teachers saying goodbye to students

Goodbye time tears

Nine months have passed already, since I’m here in Taiwan sharing Christ's love with kids from various schools and townships of Yunlin County. So many cute faces have been surely stocked in a corner of my brain. So many good memories have found a hiding place somewhere in my heart. But what’s my favorite camp week enjoyable moment? Friday morning goodbye time. Not because I’m glad that at last, the naughty kids are leaving the CEI campus but because of how most of them purely and naturally express their gratitude toward us for being there for them after all, teaching and supporting them, playing games with them during English classes and break times, loving them throughout the week no matter how good or bad their behaviors might be sometimes.

I like to see tears in their innocent eyes, of course, when those tears are tears of love. What I’m trying to say is that I’m usually happy to see how what they really are deep inside their hearts, can suddenly explode into those tender tears in their eyes: they are nothing but little lovers that long to be loved. And when they seem to have barely found that love from the CEI teachers they meet for the first time and for a short time, they realize that Friday has already come and that they will have to say goodbye so soon. What is more natural from kids in such a situation than shedding tears of love?

Most of the time when the kids are in tears during the closing ceremony, it’s neither because they are homesick (as some of them are the first days of the camp) nor because they are so happy to leave CEI and return to their hometown, school or family that they burst into tears of joy. For those of them who have such a feeling of joy do not cry; instead, they have their faces lightened by a big smile, synonym of the great joy in their heart: the joy of going back home…

I remember George, a kid from last week’s camp, a very intelligent and lively boy. He was so happy to go back home (because he was homesick, of course!), while his twin sister, Jessica was in tears just like almost half of the kids in the auditorium. That was as usual, just when we started singing the goodbye song with them.

The tears in the eyes of those kids are deep expressions of their unspoken gratitude toward the CEI teachers. Their touching emotions expressed through silent crying is nothing but a message: we are grateful, we love you, and we will definitely miss you! What expression of love and gratefulness more beautiful than this do we need to have from them to realize how much love we have sown in their hearts within only five days?

Toy, my joy of last camp

Toy is my “Coup de Coeur” of this whole semester so far. Not because he was the best student of last camp or of all the previous camps. Not because he has a good English level, nor because he likes me. The reason why he touched my heart so deeply is the contrary of all the above; he was far from being a good student, his English level is very low, he has serious learning disabilities, he has a sad family background; but over all those weaknesses he has, I found, in him a real ray of sunshine.

His enthusiasm, his determination, his willingness and his cute smile, have taken over his weaknesses and led him to a successful camp completion. How touching it was to see him during the traditional “Love sharing time” standing in front of us, eager to share his impressions with others! How touching his emotive voice was, hearing him sharing one thing he learned during the camp, one character improvement he noticed from a home school classmate, and one character he would like to put into practice when he will go back home! Toy was so touching that his home school teacher couldn’t hold back her tears after his sharing.

Beyond the big smile he offered me each time he saw me, beyond the fact that he kept waving at me constantly with an innocent and cheerful face, the best gift Toy gave me the last day during lunch time, was to invite me to come with my plate and join him at his table: “Teacher Yar, Teacher Yar, come, sit…” he said to me showing me the empty seat next to him. Which loving teacher could turn down such a loving invitation from his student? His invitation was irresistible. And what was my surprise and joy when I heard Toy trying his best to communicate with me as I effectively joined him with my meal. And guess how? Surprisingly, more than fifty percent of the words he spoke to me were in English, using most of the English vocabularies we taught them throughout the week! How happy I felt hearing him trying his best to have a conversation with me in English!
I will rejoice in the Lord

I’m grateful to God for the miracle he keeps operating behind the scenes, in the life of Taiwan children through VOICE Missions’ ministry. And like Habakkuk said in his last prayer:

Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail, and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” (Habakkuk 3:17-18)

This is to say that though we cannot officially share the Gospel with the kids we teach here in Taiwan, though we might not see flourishing now the fruit of Christ love we sow in their life through the time we spend with them teaching them and playing with them, yet we will rejoice in the Lord for using us as vessels to spread his blessing over their lives.

Yes, I will take joy in the God of my salvation, for He is the only one who can water the seeds we sow in their hearts; He is the only one capable of working the best for the salvation of Taiwan’s unreached people. All be to His glory!


Yarmonth Drissou (Yar) is 34 and is from Togo, a small French speaking country located on the West African coast.  In his hometown, Yar used to be a French and English as Second Language teacher in both elementary and junior high school for 5 years.  After 5 years, he resonded to God's call upon his life, quit teaching and moved to Switzerland for a three year Bible college program.  He is a professioal graduate with a Bachelor of Theology since June 2016 and is hoping to pursue his postgraduate studies for a Master of Theology.  He is a pastor and Bible teacher and also a writer fond of poetry and philosophy. “Eurêka” and “Le procès de Tromal” are his published books so far.  After his Bachelor degree in Switzerland, Yar was waiting for the 2017 fall semester to make it to Dallas Theological Seminary when God opened VOICE Missions' door for him in Taiwan, where he has been serving since September 2017.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Finding God's Purpose in the Ordinary

"The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me, your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever." Psalm 138:8a

The simple pleasures of serving Taiwan has been beautiful in its own way.  One of the memories that stands out is the first day meeting the other teachers. It reminds me that small actions can make big waves - cooking a good meal with everyone can make a room full of strangers into friends. It creates a bond that connects all races, nationalities and backgrounds. Seeing the smiles on everyone's face as the meal begins causes a thankfulness that everyone shares. 

Unspoken connections is part of the daily life here, things that would usually go unnoticed and ignored in America are quite the opposite in Taiwan.  You would get invited for dinner for just smiling and waving while biking by locals who are BBQing.      

Let your light shine

"This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine."

It's interesting teaching little light to the kids, with big eyes they listen to a song they never heard before. Soon they sing along and the whole class is filled with music. Little do they know that the simple song has a deeper meaning to it. The next day they find out the meaning. A skit is acted out about not giving up when the going gets tough. Let your light shine even when it's hard.

I once read that "Smiles don't need translations". So much can be said with just body language and a smile, so much love can shine though.

"Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." - Matthew 5:16

Hannah Eng is currently serving with VOICE Missions on the Chiayi team.  Born and raised in Florida, she went to culinary school.  Her hobbies include dancing, hiking, cooking and spending time with friends and family.

Friday, May 11, 2018

An Answer to Our Prayers

"Teacher, I feel it at that time."  

This was a former student's response when I told him how my friend Caroline and I always prayed for our students.  We would pray that they would know Jesus and feel His love during their week with us at school.  A lot of the time, we have no way of knowing how God answered those prayers but when I ran into Gavin recently at the night market, God gave me a glimpse of one answer.

Gavin came to my school four years ago.  Caroline and I went to visit him and his classmates in their village afterwards.  We kept in touch over the years and continued to pray for him.  Then one day a couple years back, we noticed that there had been big changes in Gavin's attitude and actions.  When we asked why, he said that God had changed his life. 

Fast forward to the other week when I ran into this 8th grader.  He began spilling over with joy, sharing what grace and love Jesus had shown him and how he wanted to share that same Love with others.  

As this eighth grader thanked me for praying and sharing with him, I realized - God had been using our prayers for years now.  In fact, He has shown His love and truth to Gavin and is now using Gavin to reach others.

God uses you and He uses me.  As Mother Teresa said, "I'm a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world."  Keep on believing that He is writing that love letter through you wherever you are!


Joanna Suich has been serving with VOICE Missions since February 2013.  As a child, she attempted to dig her way to China, but only made it two feet in before her mom called her to dinner.  Although Joanna never made it to China, God did bring her nearby to the island of Taiwan.  She has a heart for all things involving missions, juvenile delinquents and adventures.  God has placed Hualien in her heart and it's home now.  She currently is doing college online as she volunteers, majoring in social work.  If you're looking for Joanna, check the local village or orphanage and you'll probably find her there - playing, tutoring and sharing Christ's love and truth.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Of Dreams and Fields

It’s 10 pm and I’m working on a homework assignment for my online course.  I’m in Taipei because all of the VOICE Missions teachers have a meeting this week. Through the screen door to the balcony I hear traffic buzzing back and forth. I also hear the relaxed conversation of some of the other VOICE Missions teachers drift through from the other room.  They are discussing dreams. Dreams for their future, dreams for what they want to do in Taiwan long term, dreams of how to impact the lives of the students who have become near and dear to them.

Gem in Danshui at a memorial for George Mackay
This scene carries me back to a meeting during my first year in Taiwan. Some of the other VOICE Missions teachers and I sat in the girls’ dorm preparing for bed. There were three other teachers who had been in Taiwan for quite some time, and then there was me – new and eager to learn all I could. I listened wide eyed as they shared their passions, the needs they saw in the lives of those around them, their dreams of how they could help transform this little island that we had ventured to. That night my heart was stirred with a sense of excitement and adventure. I was here and I was going to make a difference.

Five years have passed. Some of those teachers have gone on to become involved in other more long term ministries here in Taiwan. Few of the dreams we discussed have been fulfilled, but the path God has created for those teachers has allowed them to reach and touch many lives. And yet there are still so many lives to reach. Truly the harvest is plentiful and the laborers far too few. Will any of the dreams discussed tonight be able to be realized? “A man’s heart deviseth his way, but the Lord directeth his steps.” (Prov. 16:9 KJV) What path has God prepared for these teachers? And the heaviest question of all - where are all the workers for this waiting harvest?

It is this heavy question that brings to mind George Mackay. The first time I had heard of him was from a lady who attended the same church as me in Dajia. She mentioned that in Dansui there was a small museum for one of the early missionaries to Taiwan and his name was George Mackay. The second time I heard of him was while reading Goforth of China.  Mackay visited Jonathan Goforth’s church (and many other churches) in an attempt to recruit missionaries for Taiwan. Mackay realized he was drawing nearer and nearer to the end of his pilgrimage on earth and wanted desperately to find young Christians to fill the gap that would be left in his absence. It was Mackay’s speech which sparked the fire in Goforth’s heart and started him on the path that would lead to a life of missions in China.

I don’t know if Mackay was successful in recruiting new missionaries to Taiwan. But I do know that there are now many missionaries in Taiwan – I am one of them. Mackay’s heart was heavy for the Taiwanese people, as are the hearts of my fellow VOICE Missions teachers and me. Yet it is not our harvest. It is God’s harvest and we are merely the workers. “Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He will send forth labourers into His harvest.” (Mt. 9:38 KJV) Whether our dreams are fulfilled or not, at the heart of it all we wish to see laborers drawn the harvest.

 Are you one of these laborers being called to Taiwan? Or is the Lord possibly calling you, as he called Jonathan Goforth, to go to another foreign field? Perhaps He is not calling you somewhere abroad, but rather to be a faithful witness at home. No matter which field He has called you to be a laborer in, will you be praying with me that God would bring workers to the fields of Taiwan? There is indeed a great need here for the Way, the Truth, and the Life.


Originally from Chicago, Gabrielle Martin had served with VOICE Missions for 3 and a half years before being led to spend a year and a half back in the States. She has recently returned to Taiwan, and continues her M.Ed. TESOL studies online through Regent University. She loves teaching English, singing, and dabbling in photography. Her personal blog, sharing her adventures and things she's learned, can be found at

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

And So It Continues

Christmastime, 2016, I sat in my apartment in the USA and begged God to allow me to return to Taiwan.  It was the place God had put on my heart for long-term missions, but had told me to leave indefinitely.  At that time I had no idea if or when God would allow me to return. A few weeks later, on January 1st, God told me it was time to return.  That week, I bought a ticket for a month-long trip for later that month, and then later returned in May for a more permanent stay.

From June through August I focused on language studies, and once again asked God for direction.  I had thought my work with VOICE Missions was done, but God still had more work for me to do as a part of VOICE Missions.  

As I prayed about returning to VOICE Missions, and specifically to the Joy House ministry in Chiayi where I had previously served every weekend from the fall of 2013 through summer of 2016, I asked God “isn’t the work there already completed?” and He brought to mind the words of a song I had written 5 years before “The work is not done”.  That was all the confirmation I needed, and so I returned.

Being back in Chiayi did not answer all my questions, however.  I am called to Taiwan for the long-haul, and VOICE Missions is a short-term opportunity.  It's a great way to prepare to live in Taiwan for full-time missions, but it's not a permanent solution.

I began praying again, and asking for direction.  The answer came, and it wasn't what I had initially expected.  One week, the kids from the village “DaKangLang” came to camp. I already knew most of the kids very well from the Joy House (a Saturday Bible club in their village).  Many of the kids from DaKangLang have learning disabilities, and all of them are under privileged. Many come from broken homes or live with grandparents.

Those kids were the reason I returned to Taiwan, and that week, God gave me the answer I had been looking for.  To serve in the village of DaKangLang as a teacher, a mentor, and as an example of Christ.

For now, I will continue with VOICE Missions as I prepare to serve in DaKangLang, and for now I will continue to be an example of Christ to the many other kids I will meet in this Spring semester.


Kristina Joy Dzimianski has served with VOICE Missions since the fall of 2013, and lives in Chiayi County. She enjoys spending time with kids and animals. She also likes coding computer programs in her spare time, and hopes she can teach coding skills to some of her students someday.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Hard Times: Blessings in Disguise

Learning to rest + trust

One of the biggest lessons God has been teaching me recently is to rest and trust Him.  There are many circumstances right now where it seems I can do little to change them for the better.  He's been showing me to slow down and lean into Him, casting my burdens on Him.  Then when I pick them back up, He's quick to remind me that I really can't do it but He can.  Not only can but - He will.

Dealing with daily health issues

I'd like to be able to say that I am completely healthy each day and feel great.  That's not the case right now but - I am so, so much better than I was earlier in 2017.  Being off many of my favorite foods has been extremely hard.  I choose that, though, over being as sick as I have these past 3.5 years.  It's a relief to only feel sick a little each day or somewhat worse every few days.  So am I all better now?  Not yet.  Am I getting there?  I hope so!

Praying and praying and praying

Another big theme in my life lately has been prayer.  Each day God brings something to mind or causes something to happen where I need to pray about it (this is always true but seems more prominent recently).  Sometimes it's just a quick prayer.  Sometimes I've had to pray and pray about it and I still don't know what He's doing.  I'm learning that's okay and to keep praying.  My favorite spot is heading to the nearby ocean where I can sit and speak with my Savior about what's up.  

Embracing His goodness to me

2017 was a very tough year in many ways.  I've come face to face with a lot of sorrow, loss and even trauma.  I've suffered from nightmares on and off for 11 months.  I won't sugarcoat it and say it's all okay, because it's not.  But I smile in spite of all that because 2017 brought Jesus' presence even closer to me.  I've come to see His goodness in a deeper, more beautiful way through all the hard times.  I'm still in the midst of it all.  I still see how He paints the sky for me.  I still see how He sends me the naughtiest kid to come sit in my lap and hug me.  I still see how He sends friends my way to point me back to Him.  He's so good.

Praising Him because He's sovereign, He's near and He's here.


Joanna Suich has been serving with VOICE Missions since February 2013.  As a child, she attempted to dig her way to China, but only made it two feet in before her mom called her to dinner.  Although Joanna never made it to China, God did bring her nearby to the island of Taiwan.  She has a heart for all things involving missions, juvenile delinquents and adventures.  God has placed Hualien in her heart and it's home now.  She currently is doing college online as she volunteers, majoring in social work.  If you're looking for Joanna, check the local village or orphanage and you'll probably find her there - playing, tutoring and sharing Christ's love and truth.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Serving Smiles of Taiwan

Lost in Douliu

Sunday, September 3, 2017. It was just my second week in Taiwan since my arrival, and my second Sunday in Douliu City. Guess where I was and what I was doing that morning from 8 a.m. to 12:30! If you think I might probably be attending the Sunday service, you are wrong! I was in the street. I wasn’t supposed to be exploring Douliu City that Sunday morning biking around, and drawing people’s eyes and attention on me. Yet, that was what I did. That was where I was: in the streets of my new home away from home spending my Sunday morning biking around. What happened? I just couldn’t find my way back to my location after trying to see if I could quickly find a nearby church to join for Sunday morning service. Welcome to Taiwan!  Ha ha ha!

Eyes and smiles of grace

I can’t share my first impression as foreigner in Taiwan without mentioning how I felt whenever I go outside: There are always some eyes somewhere staring at me somehow, with curiosity, amazement or with a big beautiful smile. What about my first eye contact with kids outside? A deep time of love and grace sharing! And I could feel my heart whispering to me words such as: “Surely, your ministry here in Taiwan starts right here. With those street’s unusual eyes and smiles, because each instant of joy and amazement your presence brings to those kids and those eyes staring at you is worth it”.

Chinese tea culture show

How exciting it was to experience this exceptional Chinese tea culture show! Although the show cost me nothing but my Saturday morning rest, it was well worth it. And how great was my surprise in the evening when I started to receive messages on the Line app from my CEI coworkers! They were eager to inform me that I was in the news. That experience made me realize one more time how good and marvelous God has been to me since I came to Taiwan. I believe He has always led me to the right place at the right time and at His right time for His right and good purpose. I’m definitely and infinitely so grateful for that.

Sowing a seed of love in hearts

I remember that my greatest fear before my first camp week was rejection from kids. I was afraid they might be afraid of me and run away from me or be distant, since they are not used to having foreign teachers like me (I mean “Colored skin”). I was wondering how they will respond to my willingness to share with them Christ’s amazing love, care and attention, that love I carried such a long way (from Togo to Douliu) just for them. But I was positively amazed by their love response and by their attention in return. No one can make such gracious, passionate, lovely links possible in no time, except God who is by definition Love. So, I’m so grateful to Him for giving me the tremendous honor and opportunity to represent Him and his affection before all those lovely kids.

Smiles beautiful like sunset

At the end of most camps, nothing is more rewarding than seeing some of the kids waving at you, sadly saying short English sentences such as: “Bye bye Teacher Yar. I love you.” That’s the very time your call here in Taiwan makes deeper sense to you: You have sowed a seed of love in hearts and the fruit is just obvious: Smiles beautiful like sunset. I remember the last camp we had before the New Year.  At the end of the camp, the kids were all so eager to say goodbye to me that they almost ignored all my coworkers (Chinese teachers). In fact, I think that wasn’t so kind of them! One thing I learnt from all the kids I taught and shared my love with so far: when they feel really loved and cared for, they respond with love and happiness showing up in their eyes and their cute smiles.


Yarmonth Drissou (Yar) is 34 and is from Togo (a small French Speaking country) located on the West African coast. In his hometown, Yar used to be a French and English as Second Language teacher in both elementary and junior high school for 5 years. And 5 years ago, he responded to God’s call upon his life, quit teaching and moved to Switzerland for a three year Bible college program. He is a professional graduate with a Bachelor of Theology since June 2016 and is willing to pursue his postgraduate studies for a Th. M. (Master of Theology). He is a Pastor and Bible teacher and also a writer fond of poetry and philosophy. “Eurêka” and “Le procès de Tromal” are his published books so far. After his Bachelor degree in Switzerland, Yar was waiting for 2017 fall semester to make it to Dallas Theological Seminary when God opened Voice Missions' door for him in Taiwan, where he has been serving since September 2017. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

A Season of Change

I've said goodbye to the days where I’m constantly covered in sweat and chalk dust!  My everyday craving for a cold, iced drink is being replaced with hot, ginger tea. My classroom is filled with kiddos wearing their poofy winter coats.  Each day I wake up wondering if it’s going to be 29C/85F, warm and sunny or 13C/55F, cold and windy.

The weather isn't the only thing on this island that's in the changing-seasons stage. Moving to Taitung City a few months ago began a new season of experiences & opportunities for me. Change always brings about its share of challenges, but when you're in the center of God's will, the blessings always outweigh the hard times!

Recently I've been learning how to balance my work at the Character & English Institute with trying to become involved in my local community, keep up with my online college courses, & take part in outside ministry opportunities... all while getting enough rest to stay healthy. I can't say that I've learned exactly how yet, considering I'm in the process of getting over my third cold this semester. However, within this learning process, I am learning to not put ministry in a box!

Back when I lived in Hualien, I was involved in a lot of stereotypical "ministries", such as volunteering at a Buddhist orphanage, working with juvenile delinquent boys, or going to visit students in a rural village as "ministry". This year in Taitung, however, I don't have the resources (such as a car), the people (such as a fellow teammate), or the time (since I am now working on college classes) to become involved in those types of ministries.

At first, I felt guilty that I wasn't doing enough "ministry" here and even wondered if I was being selfish with my time, even though I believed God called me to continue college classes while I teach this year.  That's when I realized that this is just a new season of ministry for me.  What I did previously in Hualien shouldn't compare to what I'm doing here.  Just because something is different doesn't mean one is better or more impactful than the other.  I'm learning that, as a Christian, there doesn't have to be a specific time for "ministry".  My interaction with others should always reflect Christ's love and light.  I'm learning to be intentional with my actions and see my entire life as ministry.


Caroline Rodgers currently lives in Taitung City.  Her first encounter with Taiwan was over 10 years ago and it was during that trip that she felt God calling her to serve the Taiwanese people long term.  In order to follow this call, she is pursuing her degree in elementary education so she can continue to minister in Taiwan.  Caroline enjoys studying Chinese, visiting former students and connecting with the local people.  She also likes exploring new places and spending time with friends.