I'm sure you've experienced face-ache in your lifetime at least once; we all have. It happens when you are trying to get pictures taken and you stand there with a cheese-y smile pasted on your face for what feels like an infinite period of time. It also happens when you are an American on any kind of trip overseas. In my case, that means I am experiencing face-ache every time I step out of my hotel room. I am met by so many well-wishing and curious people that I walk around with a smile constantly pasted on my face. It would really tickle all the Chinese people if Carmon would do the same, but she still really only smiles for me, Tom, and Price.
That brings me to the real joy I experienced today. I wrote the other day about a 28 year old Christian Chinese girl I met named Judy. At the time, I was a bit skeptical if she was genuine or if she was just claiming to be a Christian because she thought that's what Americans want to hear. She invited me to join her this morning, so I went with her to Shamian Christ Church and had face-ache from real joy. Sitting in the Mandarin/English service was glorious. I hate that word, but there is no other word to describe how I felt. I was able to imagine a taste of what heaven will be like when ALL nations will raise their voices in worship! What a blessing!
Here are the three of us in the chapel. And, for the record, I think that's a smile on Carmon's face, too.