Friday, April 2, 2010

that's no moon

Our clan of Americans climbed to the tip top of Moon Hill on an unfortunately dreary day. I remember feeling old because there were hundreds of steps to get to the first of two summits, and I actually had to take several breathers, and it wasn't due to the altitude. I'm glad to say that I've recently been training for a 10k (along with the rest of the IECS team) coming up in May in Beijing; so if I had a rematch with the stairs at Moon Hill now, it'd be no contest. This was the third leg of our trip, following Macau and Shenzhen, and it was also a homecoming for me. My first experience in China was in 2002 in this town called Yangshuo in the Guangxi province. Bryce, Mark, Hudson, and Andrew were all there, and it was this trip that catapulted a long-lasting, romantic, and somewhat steamy relationship between China and me. We've been hot and heavy ever since. I returned to Yangshuo two years later, and it was then that I decided to someday live in China. Who knew it would be so soon?

We spent 5 days in Yangshuo, staying at the Bamboo House hostel. It didn't take long for us to notice the Chinese character for righteousness painted on the tiled wall behind the front desk. I asked Annie, the young desk attendant and she proceeded to tell me her testimony. It was quite a blessing to connect with other believers in such a random place, and it wasn't the last time on this trip. Two of the days, unfortunately, were spent knee deep in tissues in my hostel bed. I had a nasty head cold, but on the last two days I had the strength to reunite with an old friend that some of the guys on that early trip would remember: William Wu. He joined our group for dinner the night before we left.

"I've changed my Chinese name," he told me over pizza.

"Why?"

"Because I hate my father," he said without hesitation.

It was this kind of transparency that originally attracted me to William, along with his sarcastic sense of humor. But this time he wasn't being sarcastic, and the next morning William and I met for breakfast and talked about what it would look like to forgive his father for leaving his family and starting a new one. As one might expect, it would be hard; it would be unthinkable, implausible. I told him that forgiveness is possible, but only if you've really been forgiven before. Only then will you pay the price for someone else's debt. Before we left we exchanged recommendations; he wrote several Chinese film and music recommendations on a slip of paper for me and I wrote "Romans 5:8" on a piece of paper for him and told him to look at it later. He thanked me. William is a believer in love and truth and I hope that will lead him to the incarnation of the truth.

Here's a video of us atop Moon Hill, high on altitude.

4 comments:

Andy said...

oh man, way to follow through with that pogo stick gag. I wasn't sure at first, but you knew where you were going all the time.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, seen "Howel's Moving Castle?" Thanx for the shout out bra bro.

-Andrew Lan

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