It’s finally Christmas! Merry Christmas to all!
I’ve been feeling Christmassy since September, as people would know, and now it’s finally the time to celebrate! Although it won’t be similar to what I’ve dreamed, I believe embracing the Christmas spirit should do the trick. Dreaming of winter, snow and companionship would set the mood.
This post is going to be a long one due to the number of pictures I’ll be sharing from my Taiwan mission trip. The places I went to in Taiwan definitely made me feel the holiday spirit. I’ll let the pictures speak for itself.
A mission trip to Taiwan has given me an entirely new experience I am very excited about. It was a totally different trip from the family trips or school trips I have gone on, giving me a fresh outlook on life and new experiences that I will remember for a long time. The difference lay in every aspect of the trip and the things I have taken away will help me live more independently in the future.
The trip once again confirmed my love to help others. Over the years as I helped out at various organisations, I began realising that I enjoyed lending a helping hand to the less fortunate. It was a joy to be able to interact with and help the needy as well as younger children. In this trip, being able to reach out to the 40 children at the church was a joy. Not only was I warmed by their hospitality as well as their atmosphere, I was overwhelmed by a sense of satisfaction, peace and joy which I have not felt for a very long time. It was a different kind of happiness – not a fleeting excitement of good results at school nor a temporary uplifting at something I’ve done, but rather a memorable joy at seeing the children blessed and being able to do something for them, even if just a bit. It was overwhelming to see people accept Christ as their Lord and Saviour and see God work daily in our lives. It was nostalgic to play with the children and feel their attachment towards us. It felt different to be appreciated.
Hence I wondered if all I ever really wanted to feel in life was to be appreciated.
Nevertheless, the trip was not only fulfilling, but it was amazing in the short travels we had around Taiwan afterwards. Being assisted and brought around by the pastor’s wife every day, it was an experience of my life, living like a Taiwanese in a traditional Taiwanese house, taking public transport and bus, and walking so much that I felt much fitter instead of tired. I particularly enjoyed being at Qingjing Farm up on a mountain in winter, where the skies were a clear, deep blue and the air was crisp and fresh. The slopes were bathed in sunlight and there was warmth despite the cold. It was heartwarming to watch the sheep and horses live life quietly, free of worries as they ate grass and went about their day. There was so much activity, but yet there was an indescribable peace and an euphoric sense of freedom that engulfed me and allowed me to be carefree and happy for the first time this year.
Without much ado, I’ll let my happy, carefree and holiday feels take over and let the photographs* do the talking.
*All photos are taken by me in Taiwan, 2014. Please do not repost, copy or use the photos without crediting ‘bananapastries’. Thank you.