After getting out the book A Parent’s Guide to Hong Kong for Kids that someone gave me when I got here, I am planning out everything I want to see and do with the girls. So, this Saturday we went to the Hong Kong Botanical Gardens and Zoo. It is near the center of town up on some little mountains. It even had a playground with swings, which are not easy to come by here. The girls had such a good time seeing all of the tropical plants and birds and monkeys and a jaguar. It was a bit hot and the walking was steep, but we made it until lunch time. We decided to be good and get the bus instead of paying the expensive taxi. The hardest part about getting around in Hong Kong is the bus system. It is hard to find the stops and which bus to take, and they come at random times. So, we waited and waited for the right bus to come and after more than 40 minutes, we were all so tired and confused and couldn’t believe we were just standing there so long on the side of the steep mountain road. So, we jumped on another bus we thought would be ok, and it took us toward the opposite side of the island from our house. Once we realized it, we jumped off and of course, caught the first taxi we could see. (Click here to view pictures)

Experiences like these are grounds for real spiritual growth. The family time at the Garden and Zoo was so fun. Then, we get to the bus stop and we almost fall apart in the heat, everyone’s tired, the cars and buses are smoggy, we keep standing and standing hoping to see our bus coming and each time, it’s not our bus. That is when living in a foreign land can get to you. But God was merciful and gave us the strength to endure and no one even yelled or fought with each other.

I feel entitled sometimes to the right to get where I want when I want. And I get upset when it doesn’t happen with efficiency and speed. But when it is out of my hands, I have no choice but to wait. Our time is so important, and we want to make use of every minute, but the moments waiting on the journey are just as important, maybe even the most important. In those moments, our true character shows. Will we respond with gentleness, patience, kindness and compassion or irritability, anxiety and rudeness? But when we remember that God holds the skys and seas and lands in his hand, it makes it easier to trust that even the waiting moments are in his hand, too.