06
Jan
08

Catching Up

It has been a while since I have written my blog. Beijing was a 24/7 trip. Anyone traveling on this side of the earth must go to Beijing. It was an unforgettable experience.
Okay, so where do I begin?In three hours I will lead HKIBC in the Lord’s Supper during both morning worship celebrations. I am excited about that awesome privilege.

While in Beijing, my Internet connection was limited. I could not connect to my blog, or to any other Christian websites. I was informed last night from some Hong Kong residents that the government monitors and literally controls the web. How chilling is that?Speaking of the Communist Government, one night a maid knocked on our hotel room door to tell us to close our curtains. What did I do? You guessed it; I opened those puppies in democratic defiance.

The Beijing people were just as gracious as the people of Hong Kong.

It took us 24 hours to get adjusted to the culture. After that we soon found our way around our part of Beijing.

Having a guide with us each day helped immensely. There would be no other way to see Beijing, than with an English-speaking guide.

As for historical sites, you name it we experienced it. Each day was better than the previous day. We experienced many different venues.

The Temple of Heaven was fascinating. This is the place where the emperor would offer sacrifices for the fall harvest. It is now a park where the retired people of Beijing spend their days. There were hundreds, if not thousands, of retired people gathering there that morning. They were singing, dancing, playing games, exercising all over the place. That was really neat.

Included in our final day was a tour of private home in Hutong Village. We met a woman who lived in 300 square foot flat with her husband and daughter. Now that was interesting.

During the visit I encountered something I have never witnessed before in my years of ministry. I will try to post that story, along with a few others later this week.

Before leaving Saturday morning I decided to take a run through Beijing, and I am so glad I did. I think I ran about five miles; I am not sure because I stopped so many times to watch what was happening in front of me.

My goal was to run around Tiananmen Square, which I did. The Square was about a mile from our hotel. The closer I approached the Square, the larger the crowd continued to grow. People were flocking to the northern end. I ran down to that end to see what was happening. I estimate at least 3000 people gathered that morning to watch the military raise the Chinese flag. I stood along the street’s edge.

For some goofy reason people were staring at me just as much as they were staring at the flag-raising ceremony. I think it may have had something do with my goofy running attire. By the way, did I mention it was about 22 degrees that morning? When I arrived back at the hotel and saw what I looked like I realized why they were staring at me.

We have more pictures to post. Taylor and I will do that later today, when we have time to work through all the photos.

Thank you for praying for us. We are experiencing the power of your prayers firsthand. We look forward to our return, and to sharing with you what we experienced.
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