My church, Hope Unlimited, is getting ready to kickstart a 90 day Tithe Challenge starting next Sunday. For those unfamiliar with the term, tithe is when you give one-tenths of your income as an offering to God. This is the most basic and regular form of offering. I would have loved to participate in this challenge, but sadly I will be moving back to Taiwan before the end of the challenge. Regardless, I just want to share the wonderful things God has been doing in my life in the past few months because I have been tithing.
I quit my steady 8-5 job at the end of January. The paycheck was great but it wasn’t my true passion. I decided to become a freelance interpreter and translator which was what I was trained to do in graduate school. It was a leap of faith for me because there was no guaranteed paycheck. Work would be highly unstable. I was reluctant. I didn’t even tithe regularly when I had my steady well-paying job. But I made a promise to myself and to God that no matter how much or how little work I got, I would ALWAYS tithe. It was my way of proclaiming my trust in God and believing that He will provide for me.
February was a slow month. I received a little bit of work, but it wasn’t much money. Fortunately, I still lived with my parents and they were encouraging and supportive. I kept tithing, always giving 10% of each check I received after an assignment. Suddenly, when March rolled around, a client reached out to me out of the blue and offered me two large interpretation assignments. I was nervous because it would be my first real interpretation job out of graduate school. But I accepted and I knew that God would be with my every step of the day. It was an extremely tricky assignment centered on finance and investments. But God gave me the words to say and he kept me calm through the whole thing. At the end, the client was extremely satisfied with my work and said she would gladly refer me to any of her contacts in the finance sector if they ever needed an Chinese-English interpreter.
Even though I wasn’t super aggressively searching for new assignments or networking with potential clients, ever since the first two assignments in March, I have been steadily presented with job opportunities. And I know this has all been God’s doing. The best opportunity He gave me was when I was offered an assignment to fly to Omaha, Nebraska to interpret for Warren Buffet, the second richest man in the world, at the 2015 Annual Berkshire Hathaway Shareholder’s Meeting. It was both an exciting and extremely nerve-wrecking assignment. But I am so thankful for this one-in-a-lifetime learning experience.
Right now, I have a steady stream of work and I am making roughly the same amount as my previous full-time job. But I have so much more fun now and I can make my own hours. I’m not even working at my full capacity yet so I know God has more in store for me.
I am moving back to Taiwan at the beginning of August. Career-wise, this means that I will have to start from zero. I have to build a new client base, find mentors, and network. But I’m not scared or anxious. I’m excited. This is what God has called me to do. Taiwan is the place that God has called me to be. And I know that he will reward me with wonderful blessings and provide me with more opportunities than I could ever imagine.