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great is the Lord

September 22, 2009

Running through my head this morning:

"Great is the Lord, He is holy and just, by His power we trust in His love.
Great is the Lord, He is faithful and true, by His mercy He proves He is love."

"For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; he is to be feared above all gods" (Psalm 96:4).

"Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable" (Psalm 145:3).

"But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who love your salvation say continually, Great is the Lord! (Psalm 40:16).

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there is hope

September 18, 2009

I was crying within 5 minutes of listening to this Focus on the Family program, and tears streamed down my cheeks for the rest of Ann Kiemel's talk.

She talks about her desiring to have a baby and her struggles with miscarriages and adoption.

Just a small taste . . .

I knew I had a choice.  I could make sorrow my friend or my enemy.  Sorrow could make me hard and cold and bitter or Sorrow could be my best friend and teach me things I had never learned before.  I reached out and took Sorrow's hand in that quite moment.  She removed all the sham and fluff from my life.  She taught me what it is to be real. She taught me what it really is to celebrate because only when you really know sorrow do you know how to laugh.  She taught me what it is to love; it is to be vulnerable.  It's to hold you hand out and to never hang on to anything.  It's to let Jesus take out or put in anything he wants, and it is to say yes.

If you are waiting for a husband or baby or struggling with sorrow, listen.  (On the Focus on the Family page click "listen now.")  It will be 15 minutes well spent.

HT: Kelly's Korner 

repeating conversations

September 12, 2009

Shop Signs in Taiwan

There was a joke in one of my foreign language education classes in grad school about a student of French who went to France and came back upset because no one in France knew their lines to the dialogues. 

I think here in Taiwan, someone actually could memorize "their lines to the dialogue" because they are most likely going to be asked the same questions in nearly the same order . . . .over and over and over again.

However, one thing to be careful of is that the conversation patterns change depending on what phase of your life you are in. 

So, since I've been amused by the conversations I've been having lately, it seems that I'm entering a new phase of repeated conversations.

Here is an actual conversation I had yesterday in Chinese (translated to English by me):

Shop Owner: So, hey, why can you speak Chinese?  You been here long?

Me: Yes, I've been here 7 years. 

Him: Ah,  married?

Me: Yes.

Him: Taiwanese guy?

Me: (with a smile) yes.

Him: Oh yeah!  Taiwanese guys are good guys, aren't they!?!

Me: (with an even bigger smile) yes.  they are pretty good.

Him: yall have a baby?

Me: No, not yet.

Him: Oh, that is just not right!  If you really think we Taiwanese people are good.  You should make a little Taiwanese baby!

Me: Well, we've only been married a year.

Him: (visibly surprised) Oh!  Just a year!  I thought it would be much longer than that since you speak Chinese.  . . .So, uh, hey, you a teacher?

This particular shop owner cracked me up.  He had a very lively
personality and talked with me for a least 20 minutes while I waited in
his shop. 

So, as I hopped on my moped leaving his store, I started thinking, and here are my observations/ponderings:

Observation/Pondering 1:

His reply to the baby question was a new one.  Usually it is followed by something along the lines of "oh, mixed blood babies are beautiful.  I'm sure your baby will be so gorgeous."  

Following, Lawrance's example, I reply to that with "all babies are beautiful."   He can get away with it–they stop that line of commenting with him.  When I'm alone, whoever I'm talking to (especially the grandmas) insist I don't know what I'm talking about because it is a "known fact that mixed blood babies and the most beautiful in the world."  At this point all I can do is smile. (Something Lawrance and I have already talked about is how to help our future children deal with all the compliments they are going to receive while in Taiwan.  But that's another topic for another day.)

Observation/Pondering 2:

The other place this conversation usually takes me is to the fact that we don't have a baby yet.  I mean come on we've been married a full year, surely there is a little one by now . . . or at least one the way!  When the shocked listener finds out, that truly the answer is "no, not yet"  four out five times they will respond "加油" (Jia you)!! 

Jia you is a cheer that roughly translates to something like "Go! Go! Go!"  It is often used to cheer on sports competitors at sporting events or to encourage someone who needs a little encouragement in their studies or to show support to someone who is about to take a test or needs to be brave.

At first I found it quite embarrassing . . . that is because I was listening to it with my American ears.  Once I realized that it just meant something more like "good luck!" or "hope you get what you want soon," it has become much less embarrassing.

Observation/Pondering 3:

I find it funny/interesting that everyone I've spoken with so far about my language skills since I've been married seems to think that having a Taiwanese husband explains why I'm pretty fluent in Chinese.  This is a new one for me and something I've got to puzzle through and figure out.  I mean it totally and completely explains everything they need to know about why I'm here.  Before people always wanted to know why I came . . . and that leads to a good opportunity to share the Gospel, but now that question is gone once they know my husband is Taiwanese. Hmmm . . . 

That's all my ponderings for now. . . back to course planning and syllabus making I must go.

small world

September 10, 2009

Years ago . . . maybe about 8 . . . Lawrance was a new Christian.  He attended a "One Day Taiwan" conference. 

When scanning in photos a while back for our wedding montage, I saw this photo from that conference.

Long ago 

And, after looking at the younger version of Lawrance, looked back a few rows and saw a red head that I recognized!  Someone I knew from college was in Lawrance's photo!  I even emailed her (ok, facebooked her) and asked if it really was her. 

In fact, several people from my college in America were at the same conference in Taiwan that Lawrance was at.

It's a small world.

crab crossing

September 3, 2009

Life on a tropical island is never boring!

Lawrance and I saw this really cool street sign . . . "crab crossing." 

Crab Crossing

And, Sandy saw this one for "beware of falling coconuts" that she posted on her blog a few days ago.

how we celebrated

September 2, 2009

To celebrate our first year of marriage, Lawrance and I went to Kenting for three days.

We had a great time just being together, relaxing, and being in a beautiful place!! 

As for "anniversary traditions," we've decided to read our vows to each other each year and to write and then read a card to each other each year.  We'd also like to make it a tradition to just get away for at least one day to be together alone.

This time, Lawrance choose for us to read our vows and cards to each other on the beach.  We got there a bit late (after sunset) so we used his cell phone as our flashlight to read to each other on the darkened  beach.  It was really sweet.

Taiwan's Tourism Train
{we first took a tourism train–to kaohsiung–huge seats}

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lunch on Sunday
{we had yummy chicken fajitas, just like we did at our wedding}

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East Coast
{we rounded the tip of the island and got to the "other" side}

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On Our Balcony
{our room had a balcony with a view of the ocean}

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Sunset on our balcony
{sunset from our balcony}

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Oreo Cheesecake
{we couldn't eat our wedding cake (since it's in mom's fridge) but we did get to eat oreo cheesecake}

~*~*~*~*~*~

Chu-Wa (Natural Gas Fire)
{natural gas coming up from the ground}

~*~*~*~*~*~

1-4-3: I love you!
{Law lit sparklers from the natural gas fires and wrote me this message "1-4-3: I Love You"}

~*~*~*~*~*~

Go-Karting Lawrance
{Law got to go Go-karting for the first time}

~*~*~*~*~*~

The Beach House
{Law picked out this really cool bed and breakfast for us to stay in called the "beach house"}

~*~*~*~*~*~

The Beach House
{great view from our third floor room}

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The Beach House
{the white and blue is so fun!}

~*~*~*~*~*~

The Beach House
{it's main drawback was that it had REALLY steep stairs}

~*~*~*~*~*~

We did go to the beach twice . . . but those photos are on Law's cell phone.

And, even though we used 50 SPF, we both still got sunburned. :(

i delighted in the lord . . . and he gave me YOU

August 31, 2009

I love you Lawrance!!  I thank God daily for making you my husband.

What a privilege to walk life next to you, with you. What great joy is mine . . . all because God is kind and gave me to you and you to me.

Happy 1st  Anniversary, LaoGong!!