Christmas this year was lovely. Lots of time at church and with friends. As much as a downer as it is to be "working" on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (and I don't even have to preach!), it really is a blessing in disguise. In this strange city of warm weather, commercial focus without cultural/spiritual significance, and leaving for vacations, church services that I'm "required" to attend become a centering experience. From a family service with "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever," to an all candlelight evening service, and then back again in the morning for a celebration of Christmas Day, I felt like I was able to really live and experience the Christmas story in many forms.
Grant loved his iphone. I'm such a nice wife ;-)
We left for Vietnam on Christmas night with some friends. There was a hat tournament in Ho Chi Minh City that we went to last year also. Lots of fun, sunshine, and ultimate :-D Grant's team won, and my team did alright :-P Following the tournament, we went to Mui Ne, a beach town nearby. VERY relaxing, and there were about 12 frisbee people there (more or less, depending on the day) who we hung out with.
It was a good holiday indeed.
I've had an interesting month of learning, discussing and thinking about church, ministry, theology, etc. It's been fun, challenging and overall good times. It's also helped me learn to be gracious with people who have differences from me. Difficult lesson, really, but super important. Some days I wish that I could do that all the time - read, think, discuss. I know, I'm an eternal scholar at heart.
I'm really excited for our upcoming "Faith Discovery Course." It's a chance for our students to meet with a mentor and prepare for baptism or confirmation. So far we have 8 students doing it! Keep them in your prayers :-)
As opposed to Grant's last blog entry about the "cold" warning, it actually has gotten cooler lately. This morning, temperatures were in the 40's across Hong Kong, and there was a frost warning even! I know that most of you in the States think I'm a wuss, but I am eternally grateful for space heaters in my flat and my office!
I've been dreaming and thinking a bit lately about the future, in several ways - leisure time and professional time! Various ideas and thoughts I've had (most have been briefly discussed with Grant!)
*doing a summer around Europe next year by rail (unpaid leave maybe?)
*planning a huge excursion the summer we decide to leave (no idea when)
*perhaps going to school for a teaching license - it makes Grant more marketable, and gives me a "practical" skill if I decide to change professions
*being more diligent about writing - journaling, blogging, etc (probably more in the journal than the blog)
*ditto on the reading
*what is my life calling? I'm not convinced that it's youth ministry forever, though I'm not questioning the call God has on my life at this moment. Part of me really wants to know what might be next! I suppose it's better that I don't know, so I can't get over excited looking forward and forgetting where I am.