“I came to Minnesota with a wondering heart at an age when I felt purposeless.”
After finishing undergraduate studies in Chongqing University, China, Helen worked at a place that she did not enjoy very much. By chance, she met Dr. Dunkin, the MBA program director of Bethel University who went to China for recruiting program candidates at Chongqing.
Dr. Dunkin was well hosted by Helen and was amazed by her interpersonal skills and English proficiency, so he encouraged her to apply for the program. Although Helen did not want to go abroad, she thought it was an opportunity to prove to her family that she can succeed in life. So she began the application process.
Normally, the school application process takes students about a whole year, so it was a huge victory and relief that it only took her 6 weeks to get everything done. Helen was thankfully accepted, but by the time she received the admission letter, she told her family that she was not going anywhere. However, as an old Chinese saying goes, “it’s hard to get off when riding on a tiger,” Helen’s family encouraged her to seize the opportunity.
Helen came to Minnesota with terrible homesickness. No matter how pricy it was, she went back to China twice a year.
God cares about Helen and wanted her to receive His love. By chance, Helen met Jon McCollum, one of the leaders of Chinese Bible Study at Wayzata Free Church when attending a HCC event. Jon’s phone call every Friday moved her heart, so she started to attend their Bible study on every Sunday morning. There, she experienced amazing love through friendships that she built week by week.
Truth to be told, life is messy. She broke up with a man she dated for over 5 years in college and suffered from a huge emotional instability. Having much more time alone than before made Helen realized the arrogance and brokenness within herself.
“I did not like myself. I couldn’t get along with her at all,” said Helen. Feeling exhausted from battling with her ego, one day, Helen lay on the floor and pondered how to deal with her inner brokenness. At that moment, the God that everybody praised at church suddenly appeared in her mind. She thought, “people made Him sound amazing, so maybe I should give him a try.” Helen chose to give up the control of her life and submit it to God.
After that, Helen’s family saw changes after dedicating her life to Jesus. Her mom was amazed by how soft and peaceful Helen had become and consequently converted to Christianity. Helen’s grandparents also became Christians because of her influence.
Now, Helen has completed a MBA degree at Bethel University, built a family of three in Minnesota, and settled into a job at Boston Scientific. Helen recalled, “For the whole time, I never planned to come to the U.S, not to say break up with ex-boyfriend and stay in Minnesota. However, things happened by themselves, and I just followed whatever my destiny seemed to be. The most beautiful thing in my life is knowing Jesus.”
God used HCC in such a subtle, yet irreplaceable way to reveal His greatness to Chinese students. May His love be the hospitality shared by HCC.