writing in the evening, after a full day of work and running around, isn’t probably the best idea. after 9 hours at the office, the only sentence i could think of is “man, it’s been so busy!”. i’ll have to change my habit to blogging in the morning.
time really makes thing change, either better or worse. for me, it’s been better. this is my 2nd week into the new position – field communication specialist. i’m beginning to feel more settled both physically and mentally. my mind is able to grasp what my responsibilities at the first start more. i’ve been reading and reviewing the compassion manual a lot, which is very unlikely for me to do that. 😛 although there’s more to the job than what i do now, i’m learning to pray for God’s grace and mercy to cover me every morning. plus, i’m excited about the new adventure i’m taking now! 🙂
the past week was eventful, although i didn’t expect it to be so. on saturday, i was able to relax and do some much-needed housework. i had lunch with a friend from work then headed to the mall to watch a movie. going to a theater has been something i haven’t done for a long time. and it felt good to do so.
one amazing thing happened on the way there. as usual, i was waiting for a red truck to go to the mall. the regular price i pay whenever i go there is 20, maximum 30 baht. but this guy wouldn’t change his mind. he insisted on me paying 40 baht. so i told him i would wait for another truck then. he left. a second later, a tuk-tuk stopped in front of me and asked where i was going. tuk-tuk is much more expensive than red trucks. so i politely said to him, “it’s okay. i’m waiting for a red truck.” the middle-age driver replied to me, “don’t worry about the price now. i’ll give it a try.” so i told him that i’d go to the central airport plaza. he asked, “how much are you willing to pay?” i jokingly said, “20 baht”. surprisingly, he took the deal. i wasn’t even serious! so i had to repeat my answer and ask him if he was certain. he furiously nodded his head and shouted “hop on, lady!” (keep in mind that this conversation took place on a very busy street of chiang-mai) half-humored and half-doubtful, i got on the car. he wove out into the traffic and took me through a different route that had less cars. he told me, “i want to rebuild new reputation for tuk-tuks in thailand.”
God taught me about kindness in that afternoon. it’s not so difficult to find articles or books about how to be kind but to actually live it out, that is a challenge. i still have no idea what motivated him to take me with just 20-baht pay, because usually it’d cost me 100 baht riding on a tuk-tuk from home to the mall. but authentic kindness without expecting anything in return shown to your friends will surely surprise and delight them.
on sunday, we had a wedding, our first, at the new church. it was beautiful but surprising because i thought it’d be totally karen style. it turned out to be a mixture of both western and karen. still beautiful anyway. i took a lot of pictures but i’ll have to post them some other time (i still haven’t posted any photos from my last trip to umphang – -“). then after the wedding, we had youth group as usual. after it was over, while i was getting ready to leave, somebody called out to me that we were going to have a meeting. i must’ve missed it when they were announcing. but i went into the meeting half wondering how i was going to understand the whole thing spoken in karen. i sat down in between 2 girls and asked them what the meeting was about. it was to talk about how to make the youth group better, if we needed to make any changes or what we were doing was already good. i was dying to speak up but felt intimidated by the language and cultural barrier. so i asked the girls to translate for me whenever i was curious but didn’t make any comment.
however, one of the youth leaders, p.gee, switched to thai and said, “everyone matters. mink, you also matter to us. so feel free to share what’s on your mind.” he must’ve seen me fidgeting in my seat. but that was it. if i had ever doubted whether i mattered to anyone there, whether they acknowledged and cared for me as a person or not, i got the answer in that afternoon. it just brought me into a whole new experience of love for the youth group, the church and the karens. i shared some of my thoughts and listened to the others while they were speaking in thai. i found this switch from karen to thai very gracious of them. it showed that they cared and would like to include me in the plans and decisions they’re going to make. i couldn’t be more humble and thankful. knowing what’s going on also fuels my passion to pray for the group and to be of help in any ways that i can too.
after the youth group was over, a couple of us went to jor dahbu’s house to wait for the lady bible study in the evening. we got there just in time for our favorite tv show (at least it’s mine). even though there was nothing fancy about watching television at a friend’s house, it was a special time for me. it may sound strange but this tv show drew us together. we enjoyed it and had a good time of laughing and commenting the people on the show TOGETHER. that was why it was so special to me – the togetherness that created tighter bond and friendship. beauty found in simplicity indeed.
i was reading in the our daily bread devotional book yesterday. i found this quote very encouraging so i’d like to end it this way: “God hides His blessings under every suffering.”
p.s. i will go to a village in the mountains to work on an article piece for 2 days. please pray for me as this will be my 1st time going in the field in this new role! until then, God bless you and keep you. 🙂