my desire to be content

Heart3 滿足. . . content.

It is not easy to be content.

In a letter to the Corinthians, Paul says, "God gives the gift of the single life to some, the gift of the married life to others.  . . . don't be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God's place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there. God, not your marital status, defines your life."

In another letter, this one to the Philippians, Paul says, "actually, I don't have a sense of needing anything personally. I've learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances.  I'm just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I've found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty.  Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.  . . . You can be sure that God will take care of everything you need, his generosity exceeding even yours in the glory that pours from Jesus."

Oh, if only I knew his recipe! because it is not easy to be content. 要滿足是不容易的.

I love my life.  I enjoy doing what I am doing.  Yet, deep inside I ache for a family . . .  for a man to love me and protect me, to care for me and provide for me, to be there for me in sickness and in health . . . for a baby to grow inside of me, for a baby to feed from me, for a child to call me mommy.

Oh, if only I knew his recipe! because it is not easy to be content. 

I long to be content.

It is not easy to be content.

a compliment

Today I am tired.  I don't know why.  Maybe I didn't sleep well.  I slept "enough" . . . maybe it was just not "good sleep."  I don't like this feeling at all . . . like I am stuck in slow motion.

Well, I was paid a compliment today that made me feel good.  Some students were speaking in Chinese behind me and I heard "可是Amanda不會." Since that is the only part of the conversation I heard, I asked, "Amanda can't what?" The student told me that I had not stereotyped him like others do.  I had not made assumptions about him based on his clothing style and mannerisms.

To me--this is one of the best compliments I have received in a long time. When people tell me I am pretty or that my hair is fun or that my nose is long . . . these things mean nothing to me. I mean sure we all like to hear that we are beautiful, but I know many people here say it simply because I have white skin and an American passport, not because I truly am. Also, I have no control over my curls or the length of my nose, yet I have complete control over my actions and beliefs. So, this compliment actually meant something to me. Moreover, I guess another reason it was powerful was that he wasn't telling me this . . . he was talking to someone else about me.

So, even though I am very tired today and am not going to go do the errands I should do and even though I feel crummy . . . I did have a little highlight in the middle of the day. :)

a thankful heart

Thanks_1 Here are some of the things that I am thankful for this year:

1. For being able to be thankful (last year was hard on me, and it was difficult to have a heart of gratitude).
2. For a loving family who is so supportative and fun to be around--I am truly blessed with a wonderful family.
3. For four living grandparents who love me so much.
4. For good friends new and old.
5. For my puppy (who is chewing up my whole home, but offering me loving compainionship as well).
6. For being able to live in Taiwan
7. For having my needs (and most of my wants) met.
8. For being able to work at a job I love.
9. For my students--who make me feel special.
10. For finding out what was wrong with me and being able to take steps to correct it.
11. For becoming more healthy and whole this last year--physically, emotionally, spiritually.
12. For safety.
13. For peace that cannot be explained.

and last but not least . . .
14. For a God whose love is beyond measure and is without condition.
15. For the neverending grace and mercy of my God.
16. For eternal salvation that does not depend on me.

Being grateful in English / American culutre is a different concept than being thankful in Mandarin / Taiwanese culture.  In Taiwanese culture you should be thankful TO someone.  But in English, we are simply "thankful for something."  I suppose that perhaps this is related to our concept of God.  But I can't be sure what the difference is . . . right now I only recognize that it is there.


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