Infrared Tape

I don’t know how it’s done in America, so I can’t say that it’s just a China problem – but I felt for immigrants this week. Our visas expired last week, so this week we’ve been trying to get new ones. First of all, because our visas expired before we got new ones (completely my own fault), we had to go to the police station and pay a fine. More expensive than I thought it would be. They they give me some piece of paper basically saying I’m sorry, I won’t do it again, and they forgive me. Sweet guys.


Then it was back to the university, who used to handle the visa-renewal process for us. On my third trip to the university, there was finally someone there who could actually help me. Sent me to another office to pay. I’m sorry, to write me a bill. Then off to the other side of campus to pay the bill. Then back to the second office to register, then back to the first office to, I thought, get confirmation that they would take care of my visa.


Nope. Here’s a handful of papers – and a list of instructions with an address to go to and try to get a new visa. Nice. So we go that afternoon. Same drill. Wait in line forever. Go get an application. After the application, go glue a picture on it. After the picture, write the bill, go upstairs and pay, come back down with the receipt. Get it stamped, come back in about 10 days. Not all that bad, but the employees are perhaps the very worst example of the consequences of government-sponsored job security.


Like I said, don’t know what people coming to America go through, but it’s a tangled mess here. Times like that you have to really guard your attitude. It’s hard to believe that those people at the bureau couldn’t care less that you “sacrificed and left your family to come and preach the Gospel in China.” The very nerve of them! I know it’s dumb, but that’s the kind of stuff that really goes through your head when your being ripped off or insulted in another country. Don’t they know who I am and how much I care about them?


Note to self: no one experience that more than Jesus. Here for no reason lower than holy love for unholy us. And no one seemed to get it, no one seemed to “respect His sacrifice.” People still talked down to Him, disrespected Him, and abused Him. Amazing, He never loses His cool and demands the respect He knows He deserves. Keeps on loving, right up to the end. 

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