Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I Wanna Be Content in ALL Things.

I have been so out of my element the past week or so. Well, I did ask God to stretch me in ways like never before to teach me something new or reiterate a point already made :P Usually I'm all over the place, meeting up with people, praying over most places I pass by, spending time with Jesus at random places for prayer time or a short Bible study here and there. But, I've been "stuck" at home for the past week. I've spent time with my family. I've read good, classic books (which I rarely have time for these days). I've sat down and had hour long, in-depth Bible studies. And today I'm baking a cake (yeah, I'M baking something...weird, right?). For some, this may be normal. For me, this is SO. STRANGE. But it's been good and relaxing and freeing to do "normal" things for a change. God has been teaching me peace and patience and contentedness amidst other things (like baking and having a conversation with someone within my own household). I've cleaned out some clutter--from my bedroom AND my heart. It's a time for cleansing. I don't know when it will transition. Sometimes it makes me jittery and I walk around the house for no apparent reason or I drink my steaming coffee in the sticky heat just to get outside and enjoy a different atmosphere, and sometimes my mom says, "Anna, if I have to hear about how you can't go see your friends one more time!" and then she has her turn to vent (because not having a working car sticks HER at home, too, and she's not used to it, either). But for the most part, I'm content. And this is good. And I'm glad my mom, my sister, and I get to work through these challenges together :-)

P.S. God HAS blessed us with a good friend who dropped off her car this morning to let us borrow this week to run errands so Mom doesn't have to run around at Publix late at night after Dad gets home and so Amberly doesn't have to hitch a ride from our neighbor to go babysit. I can't ignore that blessing :-) Thank God!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Japan: Day 5 Pt. 2 and Day 6 (written May 22nd)

For the rest of the 20th, we did a prayer walk around Sapporo for awhile; prayers for healing and light breaking through darkness and God to reveal Himself through His creation as promised in Romans 1:27 (?) and fulfillment of His promises. We also just sang some songs around the city: "God of This City," "Light of Your Face," "Here in Your Presence."

Then we rested awhile longer before the Snows came to pick us up. We ate at the onsen. Eliz and I split a meal with ramen and fried rice, and we ate at low tables where you sit on a big matted floor (no chairs).

There was a nine year old girl who kept trying to talk to us. She knew a few English words like "eye" and "ear," and Aunt Linda helped her speak to us. She has an English teacher at her school.

After the onsen, we re-entered the little restaurant and bought ice-cream cones.

Megan (Eliz's 15 year old cousin) came back to the church with us after for a sleepover. We were all too relaxed after the onsen to stay up late, so we ate some chocolate then went to sleep :P But, in the morning, we ate more chocolate--and breakfast (eggs w/cheese and buttered toast)--and did some Bible study. We did our minidevo and read Romans 6, since that's where Megan had been reading, and discussed it. Then I went upstairs and called Mom and talked to her for awhile, and she told me Dad had been sad because he was never at home when I called, so I called him at work and babbled about what's been going on, and he laughed and said how he was glad we were safe.

After I got off the phone, I returned to the main area of the church with Eliz and Megan, and we danced around to music, and Megan and Eliz tried to hook up the Ipod to bigger speakers without success.

Linda picked us up around noon to bring us to Ario, a mall a little further away from us than Postful.

After most everyone used the ladies' room, we went to the food court for lunch. We took awhile deciding on what to eat, but we finally settled on yaki soba--a fried noodle with beef and bean sprouts and cabbage (which isn't gross when cooked Japanese-style and tastes a bit like lettuce). Afterward, we tried green tea ice-cream, which has a unique taste, and *I* like it a LOT--although Eliz isn't a big fan--which was good for me because that meant I got to eat half of hers ;)

After we ate, we went with Aunt Linda to the bookstore, and I bought Christian and his parents gifts--a robot figure made of nuts and bolts, break-dancing, for Christian, and a fan for Karen and Kevin.

Then we looked around at several clothing stores. Lace is really popular in Japan. They have it on lots of shirts ("shots" in Japanese) and skirts and dresses and even shorts, haha. I may have seen lace on some slippers, too, but I'm not sure. And there was one store I particularly liked that smelled of incense and dust, played hippie/Indie music, and sold lots of Indian-style clothing and jewelry and various items (like handmade backpacks and stones and hemp). I really wanted a particular backpack, but it was $115, haha.

I tried on at least one hat in every clothing store, so Eliz took my picture in one of them. There was one store that sold a lot of different sunglasses (amidst other things), so Eliz and I tried on most pairs. Eliz really liked a pair with black frames and multicolor lenses, and *I* liked a pair with neon-clear purple frames, but Eliz said I looked good in some rectangular frames that had black as the primary color with white sides as an accent. Neither of us bought any, though, because they were $15+ and we still have some other things we want to buy.

And there was a Japanese version of a Claire's (I don't remember what it was called). They had a bunch of candy containers/scoopers in the middle where you could bag up different kinds, and they had ear piercings and posters and stuffed animals and clothes and a bunch of random stuff...like at Claire's :P

When we finally finished looking around, we went back to the food court for ice-cream. I got cookie cappuccino and Eliz got chocolate. Linda got Oreo and Megan got strawberry cheesecake (and offered me a bite =D).

Aunt Linda was determined to buy Eliz and I a present "to remember her by" so we could look at it and say "Oh, Aunt Linda loves me," haha :) She's thoughtful and kind.

So we went back to the bookstore and she bought me a 5-in-1 pen [psst...Aunt Linda, if you're reading this, it's already had much use, and sometimes I think to myself, "Oh, my Aunt Linda loves me!" :P hehe]with 5 inks to put in them; I chose: pencil, black, red, blue-black, and purple, and the pen itself is black with white polka dots. (I was going to write with that pen tonight in fondness of Aunt Linda, but I accidentally left it downstairs and am quite tired and looking forward to sleep after I finish journaling).

After the mall, we went back to the Snows' for dinner. We had chicken and cheese quesadillas. Megan was cracking me up, because she had shredded the cheddar cheese (which, by the way, was white--the color it is naturally--so I know it probably didn't have artificial coloring :-)), and noticed that it smelled funny, and asked Eliz and me if it smelled funny, and we agreed, but didn't appreciate that she made our concurment (haha...I made up a word :P)a public announcement, thereby dragging us into the discussion :P She and her parents argued allll the way through dinnertime, haha. It was really funny, though, that before dinner, several of the 7 kids (whose names I have learned now: Daniel, Megan, Andrew, Jake, Noah, Josiah, and Isaac)came up individually to the cheese, smelled it, and made a face. Haha.

Anyway, we finally ate our quesadillas (and I think mind had the smelly cheese, but it didn't taste bad, anyway) with two apple slices and two carrots (but I don't particularly like carrots, and I had a fat one, so, like the 5 year old I am, I traded mine with Eliz for a small, skinny carrot :P). After dinner, the Snows distributed some of the Reese's we brought for them (they don't have them--or peanut butter, for that matter--in Japan). Selflessly, they offered Eliz and I some, but we can buy as many as we want back in the States, so we declined.

We stayed for about an hour after, watching some kid show, and finally got back around 10:30 (which wasn't so late, but I was really wiped out). I didn't even brush my teeth or wash my face or pack up my stuff before church which would be the next morning. I just threw on my jammies and went to sleep.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Dear Tennis Shoes:

We've been through a lot together. I remember the day I found you. You were living in a box, imprisoned by other boxes holding captive other shoes, and you were owned by people who thought you weren't worth very much; they sold you cheap! But, I needed something to support me, to stay with me for awhile, to keep me comfortable.

So, I took you out of the box and bought you from your owners. I kept you close to me as I took my first trip out of the U.S. You were there for my first and second trip to Acuna, Mexico, and we made many friends together. We walked through sticky floors together as we had many babysitting adventures together. I even brought you with me to Japan.

However, you have hollowed out through the years. A couple holes have developed, separating me and you. You no longer support me like you used to, and, frankly, my running shoes helped me most of the time in Japan; you only joined me for a short time to play ping-pong. I feel like you're acting as cheap as you were sold for four years ago.

So, what I'm trying to say is, there were some good times, Tennis Shoes, but we're through.


***Photo courtesy of Stephanie Carmack***

Monday, June 13, 2011


Meditating on how decisions we make affect our lives. Meditating on how often/what circumstances God predetermines decisions/circumstances in our lives. Meditating on freewill vs predestination. Meditating on how much it matters. Meditating on similarities that don't change regardless of opinion on predestination vs. freewill. Meditating on God's will. Meditating...

For example:

Life isn't always--isn't generally--like the movies.

The guy and girl don't always break up/get together.

The guy doesn't always go running after the girl when they do break up.

The girl doesn't always take the guy back when he runs after her.

Sometimes the girl deserves it; sometimes she doesn't.

Sometimes the guy deserves it; sometimes he doesn't.

Sometimes it's okay, but sometimes it isn't.

Regardless of whether the situation is "okay" or "meant to be," it is what it is, and in life, in these circumstances, we are left with the choice to either dwell on how it isn't okay when it's not, thereby causing the rest of our circumstances not to be "okay," or to choose to move forward so the rest of life will be as it should be--"okay"--because we have learned to be content and joyful in all situations. But this is only an example.


Thank You, Jesus, for the fullness of the joy which You make complete in us, and the "okay"ness of everything in life even when it's not okay, just by being Your very self living inside us.

***Photo courtesy of Stephanie Carmack***

Japan: Day 5

Today, we woke up at 7 a.m. and skipped showers, as we're going to an onsen with the Snows tonight (tentatively). An onsen is a place where individuals take a shower/bath and then go into a huge public bath with mineral water [or like a jacuzzi or a cold bath]. I've heard that it's very relaxing. I was concerned about the level of sanitation before someone informed be about the before-shower, and for some reason I was convinced for several weeks prior to today that it was a mud bath.... I'm not sure why. 0_o Anyway, it's water...not mud. And they give you a "modesty cloth" to cover your gender area before you get in the onsen. Oh! And these are gender-segregated. I guess that's an important detail to mention. Anyway.
So after breakfast and devo we biked over to Co-Op (grocery store) only to realize that it was 8:30 a.m. and the store doesn't open until 9. But, we went with it and biked through some neighborhoods, which was a good experience. All the houses are different colors, like pink and blue and green, and 95% are all boarding instead of brick; a few are partly brick, but I don't think I've seen any all brick. Oh! And all the houses have a "gangkhan," which is a glassed-in area at the front of the house where you leave your shoes and change into slippers so you don't get dirt on the floor. It's really tedious, but certainly cleaner than any house in America. The houses (and cars) are generally a square or rectangle shape and have lots of windows. Everyone has a garden; most have lots of tulips in various colors (mostly red, yellow, and pink)--pronounced "tuleep-oo"--and about half have bonzai trees.
I haven't felt extremely like a foreigner or "celebrity," as Eliz says, until today. Lots of people were staring at us with big, silly, amused grins on their faces, and a couple people tried to talk to us. We didn't really know what they were saying.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. Before the grocery store, during our biking excursion, we saw where the Bishops--some missionaries here--live, as well as where the cousin Snows used to live (and apparently it was painted pink--the one color Nathan vocalized he hoped they wouldn't paint it), and we stopped at a park. We took a zillion pictures, which was tonomoto tonoshi--really fun! I'm excited to upload and edit them. We're so, so silly!
After we goofed off for awhile, we returned to Co-Op and argued for an hour over groceries :P We finally settled on: crab meat, some vegetable mini-dinners, rice, Aquarious (kind of like Gatorade), peach and grape gummies, chocolate mushrooms (on a sweet bread stick thing--uhhhmazing!), beef curry, apple juice, individual milk tea for Eliz and some tea I'd never heard of for me--ginseng or something--Pooky (a sweet bread stick dipped in chocolate), individual peach and plum juice, gyoza--we aren't really sure what it is, but we had it for lunch and it was DELICIOUS--some kind of fried, breaded meat and veggies--and I had mine with soy sauce; it's something I think Dad would really enjoy, and I sooo wish there was a way I could bring back some for him; but so is life. We also got salmon, which I already know I like because it was in the oniggity I tried for dinner last night--a rice triangle or circle covered in seaweed and filled with some form of fish (in this case, salmon). I had trouble eating it at first, and decided milk tea is too sweet to eat meals with but a good "snack" drink, but I took a Tums and enjoyed it more as I became used to it. Anyway...we got cold ramen noodles and sauce, cheese to eat with eggs, melon bread--which apparently has a sweet melony coating on it, chocolate bread which looks like a sandwich and has chocolate filling, and raspberry-filled bread...I *think* that's everything...and Eliz says we'll get fried rice and more gyoza at a restaurant. Yay!
so today we had gyoza and Aquarious for lunch and have just relaxed and journaled for a verrry long time, as you can imagine, with the length of this entry [I wrote Day 4 and 5 in the same entry], and we *have* decided we're done with biking for today, or rather, our butt cheeks and thighs decided for us, but that's all that's been decided for the next 6 hours until the Snows pick us up to go to the onsen. Ta ta for now! Or...sayounara! Bye!


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Japan: Day 4

We woke up about 9 am, so it was nice that we got to catch up on some sleep. We ate our breakfast and did our morning mini-devo from Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence--365 Day Devotional by Sarah Young. We journaled outside (with wet hair, might I add, hence my excess coughing up and sniffing mucus <_<) for awhile on the porch, and quickly we ran out of things to do because we were waiting on Mika, Elizabeth's Japanese teacher, and Sasaki San, the pastor's wife, to finish their Bible study, which we discovered too late was 3 hours, from 10 to 12, so we could get our money and backpacks. It's okay, though. Bible study is a good reason to make us wait awhile to "do stuff." :)
So, we ate lunch and got everything organized in our backpacks and took a looong time figuring out how to distribute our money in mon ($100 bills), gozen ($50 bills), sen ($10 bills), and yen ($1 bills)--except that sen and yen are actually coin.
Finally, we left around 2 pm :P We biked over to Islands, which is a quaint little Japanese store with kimonos, antique-like items, furniture, utensils, and many other nice things. I bought mine, Mom's, and Amberly's kimonos and obis (the sashes that go around the kimonos and tie them together), and I bought Loree and Audrey obis, and I bought Alex and Sheridan nice-looking black bowls with red and yellow leaf designs on them with big, long red spoons and black trays (I figured they might like something that was just as practical as it was nice...and Japanese :P). There were three porcelain figurines I really wanted that are more Jap-style Winne-the-Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore for 100 yen a piece ($1), but I'm going to get my other souvenirs to make sure I have enough $ before I buy them. I still need to get Dad's samurai sword (assuming we can hitch a ride from Nathan, since it's so far away), Christian's gift (I'm not sure what that will be yet...I wanted it to be a sword but I don't have enough money, sadly), and something the Zarembas, Everetts, Kintzlers, Pettys, and Midgetts (mostly fans and Japanese headbands that say "Japan" in Japanese, but prob. a family gift for the larger families).
We spent about an hour at Islands, and I only spent about $100, which is a GREAT deal for all the kimonos. The workers were sincerely excited to help us try on the kimonos and obis and mix-and-match colors, and they even brought over a mirror so we could see how it looked. As with all things in Japanese culture, they spoiled us immensely and gave me the $45 obi plus the I-don't-know-how-much kimono for $50 altogether, and they spent 10-15 minutes wrapping everything so prettily and neatly.
It didn't occur to us until we paid and left that we weren't sure how we were going to get all our stuff back to the church, as we had several bulky "bags" and only two backpacks and our bikes. But, somehow, we stuffed all our belongings in what we had and made it back without losing or breaking anything.
We put our new toys in a safe place--a sort of "cave" under the "closet" in the remodeled "idol room" at the church--and got ready to meet Kaori and her mom and older sister, who live about a 10-15 minute walk from the church (I had had enough biking excursions for the moment with all the heavily titled, bumpy roads). They provided lots of yummy snack foods for us, which was nice since we skipped lunch for time purposes: Chip! Chop--a sort of soft chocolate graham cracker in a triangular shape filled with a thin layer of creamy white chocolate--, strawberries--"ichigo"--, some kind of thumbnail-sized cookie "cup" holding milk chocolate, "chocochip cookies" individually wrapped--kind of like the "chewy" type of Chips Ahoy! or whatever brand makes those--in chocolate and vanilla, cream puffs with a yellow filling (I didn't like those), "french fries" which were all crispy, kind of like potato straws, and "cheese-filled" crackers--like the powdery, snack cheese in Ritz. And to drink, orange juice and Calpis--some kind of water with a fermented milk (Eliz had about three of the tiny glasses, but I'm not really a big fan).
We took a lot of pictures and played with their dog Andy. Later, her mom dropped Eliz, Kaori, and I off at Postful--the mall--where we did "purikura"--you take several pictures in a little booth and then decorate them with graphics. They come out in a small, vertical strip as stickers. It was fun. "Tanoshikata." Or, just the word fun, "Tanoshi." I also became familiar with other words: "Adikato"--thank you. "Kawaii"--cute. "Shawtz"--shirts. "Kowaii"--scary. "Eski"--I like. "Nippon"--Japan. Not gonna lie; picking up some of the Japanese language has been one of my favorite parts of this trip.
Let's see...some random stuff. People drive on the wrong side of the road and on the wrong side of the car--the driver's seat is on the right and they drive on the left lane of the raod. The stop signs are triangles. There are crosswalks at every stopsign.
At the grocery store, they tell you the price of every item you buy as they scan it.
They sell fish that still have their scales and eyeball, and they sell crabs that still have their shells and eyeballs.
You can buy seaweed basically anywhere, and, by the way, it tastes really delicious, especially if it's roasted, but it sticks to your teeth worse than spinach.
I hate the organization of the grocery stores. There's like, 4 different aisles just for tea--most of which is the same kind and brand.
And, as I already wrote, we kind of just chilled tonight, and God came to meet with us. He poured His presence upon us and prayed for Japan and some people back home, and that God would reveal Himself to those people who don't realized they are desperate for Him--that He would fill us till we overflow. That we wouldn't become weary of doing good. That His light would reveal, expose, the darkness that is here...yes, even here, in Japan where no one can "out nice" them, as Eliz says. We have felt such peace here from the very beginning. Our hearts and minds and souls are in agreement that the One True God has us here, wants us here, for MUCH bigger plans than we could ever have made for ourselves. We can feel this--God. Wants. Japan. And He wants it bad. Our minidevos have quotes during this trip about how the nations belong to the Lord. The worship music we've listened to speaks of it. The whispered words and abundant presence of the Lord reveal promises and plans for redemption. The King of kings, Lord of lords, and God of gods IS meeting people in Japan--He is coming through the streets, in the stores, to the homes, and breaking down the idols and turning the devoted rooms into secret, quiet, holy places where He speaks intimacy into the lives of these people--and He started long before we ever set foot in this building, but He started with us here, in this idol room. He is coming. People better get ready....
Jesus. Most precious, beautiful thing on earth...mmm...Jesus.

Japan: Day 3 Pt. 2

Oh, I so can taste and see that the Lord is GOOD. Goodgoodgood so good; delicious, BEAUTIFUL. So incredible. How the Lord delights in me, in Elizabeth, in Loree, in Alex, in Sheridan, in Mom, in His Japanese believers, in US--His Beloved Bride; cleansed, made whole, made new--newnewnew! He wants to take this town, this city, this nation, this world, and make it new--make it WHOLE in Him. HE is the GOD of this city.
Woah. So it's been about an hour since I stopped writing...and let me tell you why: God just met us with His Love and power and Holy Presence in the room of the church that is usually used for idol worship. How. Great. Is. Our. God. Holy...His very presence in the room of darkness.

Japan: Day 3 Pt. 1

Well, last night I was sooo tired, so I didn't write, butt, I'll write this morning :-) (P.S. I'm using one of the super cool pens with the four colors of ink in them =D). Yesterday we were both wide awake by 6:30 a.m., but we couldn't go anywhere until 1:00 p.m. because we had to wait on Eliz's Uncle Nathan to drive us to the bank to exchange currency and to get our bikes out of the locked apartment. So we went back to bed for about 2 hours :P and did a short Bible study and read (I, Jane Eyre). When we finally left, we met her friend Naoko at the bank and went to her friend Kaori's house, but her mom told us (more or less...in Japanese) that she had to stay late to study at beauty school and would be back tomorrow (today) around 4. but, since they were neighbors, we walked over to the Snows' old house and I got a tour. It's a *really* nice house. Nicer than the ones we have now, I believe :P Anyway, it was neat to see where they lived for two years.
Then, we walked back to the church where we are staying and retrieved bikes, and I learned how to ride a bike for the first time in about 11 years :) It wasn't so bad. I was a little swervy at first, but i was mostly steady by the end of our 5 minute bike to the Home-Mac (like a small Wal-Mart/Home Depot) and 5 minutes ride back (it helped that the bike was actually big enough for me, unlike Amberly's). At the HomeMac they have more pets than Wal-Mart. There were birds, frogs, fish, cats, dogs, turtles, tortoises, shrimp, crabs, and--get this--a pig. A black, furry pig--haha! And we definitely thought it was a dog from behind...anyway.
So we bought some of the 3-in-1 pens (black ink, red ink, and pencil) as well as one of the squishy-handle pencils, and got a call from Uncle Nathan inviting us to eat dinner with them. They were really excited--all nine of them. Megan is 15 and super sweet. Daniel, 17, is nice, too. Andrew is in the 8th grade--13 or 14--and he's really amusing. Yesterday he jumped out of the van to yell to a friend, haha. And the rest of the children are younger, so they're active and chatty and cute.
Uncle Nathan is very helpful, and Aunt Linda is sweet and sassy and caring. She can also make some mean curry. Man. I don't know what's in that stuff, but I put the chicken chunk on someone else's plate and ate two servings of rice and potatoes with it. Mmm.
And I also tried some dried cherries after dinner. I could have eaten the whole bag. Sweet and tart. Delicious.
And Nathan and Megan came over for probably an hour afterward to help set up the laptop and "Skype" phone so we could talk to our parents for free, which is extremely nice. Mom was in a good mood and liked the story about the pig and was impressed by my minimal understanding of the Japanese language within 24 hours :P "Hai" means "yes/okay." "Konichiwa" means "hello" or "good afternoon." "Gozaimas" is a way to make a phrase formal/polite. "Ohaio" is "good morning," and I can understand when people say "cute," but I can't remember how to say it....
Anyway, I'm going to brush my teeth and read the Bible and maybe then we'll bike over to Home-Mac or Co-op to get some groceries so we'll have more to eat than peanut butter, bread, bananas, and cereal :P


Japan: Day 2

Currently I am reading Jane Eyre, as Eliz and I are still waiting on her family to pick us up so we can borrow bikes, and stumbling upon the word "keen" I remember ed that there was a little thought/prayer that came to me yesterday, which I had intended to write but didn't both because I was too tired (lazy...) and didn't want to trouble Eliz by asking to borrow her pen for the umpteenth time. Anyway, here is the line:

Lord, make my senses keen, especially the spiritual to the things unseen.

It was both a prayer to fully embrace the culture of Japan while remaining sensitive to the Spirit within me that I may honor Him and be used by Him wherever I go.


Japan: Day 1

...in Japan :-) 5:52 p.m. in Japan, where I currently am, and about 3:02 a.m. in TN, from I departed about 20 hours ago. In one hour, Elizabeth Snow and I will take our last flight from Tokyo to Sapporo...Japan! Have I mentioned yet that we're in JAPAN? Because we definitely are...in Japan, that is =D Pretty excited! First plane ride, first trip out of North America, first trip as an adult, first trip as a high school graduate. Lots of firsts...and I *like* it!
I've had a little nagging feeling of depression try to bring me out of my peace and joy in Jesus and the excitement of my travels, but I've been praying and doing a little Bible study and mostly claiming the joy that I can freely accept and receive in the name of Jesus.
I found out from Eliz that less than 0.5% of Japanese people are Christians. That is SO sad! I've been praying quite a lot that the Lord would pour out His Holy Spirit upon these people as we've had our 4 hour layover, and that He would somehow let His love and big Light shine through little us in such a way as to reveal Himself, in His time, to the people we encounter.
I love Jesus so much. I can't accept life without Him anymore; He IS Life! Everlasting. Yay Jesus! *happy, contented sigh* I'm in Love. With Love! It's extravagant and beautiful.
I guess I'm supposed to be rambling about Japan...and I probably will later when I can see and taste and touch and smell and hear the fullness of its rich, unique culture beyond the airport :P
Although...I have officially tasted some Japanese food; it's just that it was airport quality ;) haha. Which admittedly was pretty good. Mison soup was the first--a very salty, green soup strained from a bean. Another was curry, which is some type of thick sauce with almost a base, spicy taste (I can only think to compare to oregano or parsley) which you eat with things like white rice. There was also a mix of tiny, chopped vegetables, not so different from the kind I eat at home. And lastly, some creamy-colored, black-speckled noodles with sauce and roasted seaweed, which tastes a bit like soybeans but a bit spicier. I like it. Well, and I tried green tea HOT, and I've only ever had it chilled. It was okay....
Anyway, I'm going to quit using Eliz's ink now, as I forgot to bring pens, and write more later when something more eventful happens.


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Why the war? How does a God who claims to be love allow for such suffering?

God is Love, and He is jealous. God is the Hero, and He saved the world. God won't relent until we come to praise Him, until we come to love Him. He. Wants. Our. Heart. And He wants it united--as One--through Him, and through fellowship with Him. Yeah, God allows for war. There's a time for it. But it's because we resist what we were made for--to love and be loved by Him, and to love one another. And if it takes breaking down our idols, tearing us apart from selfish desires, and taking away all our festivities, then that's what He'll do. But it's All. For. Love. All of it. Hosea Chapter 2. Go read it.