Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A cuppa, and a slice of my life yesterday.

I've posted the new Tea Party sketch challenge over to the right, so if you're interested in playing, be sure to check it out! Our hostess this round is Peggy, one of our senior team members.

Here's a simple card to share....using my Mug Trio set. It was inspired by several cards I've seen that feature gorgeous hat pins as an embellishment. When we travel I'm always looking for cool 'card-able' items that are compact and flat. This is a coffee stirrer from Singapore Air! The mug is stamped with 3 shades of chalk ink. I used my stipple brush (which *ACK* was dirty and made one corner sort of green) and then a brown blow-pen to break up the white around the edges a little.

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Cup of coffee.....ugh, I need one right about now, but I'm gaining stress weight and I better start hitting the green tea again.... Yesterday I was a complete stress-ball...my house girl has been sick for several days, and I've just been storing up frustration about that and not saying anything...she is painfully shy but lately I have been reading that as defiance, and that hit the fan yesterday. She'd been sick in bed all day, and I saw her get up but thought she went back to bed...but then a couple hours later she walked in the front door. Hm!

I expressed surprise that she had gone out, and when she went in her room I started calmly fuming to myself... then after a while calmed myself and gave her the benefit of the doubt - she said she had been with one of the student ladies that she often goes to, and surely she had a reason for that... so when she came out again I just apologized and said I had been confused about her going out, since she didn't ask permission. Then the truth - apparently as she was standing outside someone invited her to a birthday celebration, and since she was feeling better, she went. BOOM!!!!! Off I went. You've been sick all day, and haven't had the strength to work at all...how on earth did you have the strength to walk over and go to a party! Your first responsibility is to work in this house, not to mention that you went out without permission...

Oooooh, I know I was red - my heart was pounding...in the middle of my speech, she turned her back to me, walked over to the stove and lit it, and started cooking. In my state I didn't first calmly consider - she's from a remote village and doesn't know that in American culture that is incredibly rude...surely she was so shocked and embarrassed that she thought if she didn't look at me maybe I'd think she wasn't there (my kids have gone through that phase too...)...but I immediately took that personally, and didn't know what to do. I ended up having to leave the house...knew I couldn't stand there and wait for her to say something because that was not going to happen...so I went out to the dorm to talk to another lady who is from her same tribal area, and that was a humbling but really valuable experience...she had some perspectives that I needed to be reminded of, and I was glad that she felt bold enough to exhort me in those (it's not really cultural...although we don't consider ourselves higher than them...for a student to exhort a teacher or staff...but we have a hybrid multicultural 'kingdom' culture here that's pretty different than most).

When I came back, my girl had gone to bed and locked her door - I knocked twice but she didn't respond...so I just talked through the door - apologized for being angry, because that was wrong, explained that I had reacted because her turning her back was very offensive in my culture...said I didn't feel I was wrong for exhorting her but knew that it had been done in the wrong spirit, and apologized for that...no response of course, but hopefully she heard me. Not sure what will happen today....but we are going to get through this! And I'm learning the value of keeping short accounts - I'm generally a very easy-going and calm person, but I see that when I let things go but tuck them away in my heart that that can become a very dangerous thing. Sigh...and I live and learn, and thank God for His grace, which I need so desperately - and already have in abundance.

If you've made it this far with me, thank you for caring about the drama that is my life.........!

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  1. Bless your heart, Dina. You haven't been praying to be "more like Christ" by any chance have you? Or perhaps praying for patience?? :) God will bless you for your willingness to learn. I'll be praying for you!


  2. I have a hard time, and have been struggling lately with my passionate spirit...so I know how it feels. Big hugs to you!

  3. Oh, Dina, so sorry you had to go through another culture crisis! I pray that you will be able to get a handle on this girl & be able to understand her. I can't even imagine how hard that must be! You certainly are being refined in the fire! : )

  4. Oh Dina, I hope everything looks much better today (or maybe tonight). I know about culture differences,when I moved here (USA) it was very shocking for me. Many things are so different to my country, but I just learned how to survive, LOL, just kidding.

    Hope you feel good too.
    God bless

  5. You did the right thing. She was "playing" sick and got caught. She needs to learn the rules.

  6. What an experience to share. Thank you.

    I love your card. The sentiment is so clever too!


  7. Dina, I will be praying for an extra "helping" of God's grace for you this week. Hang in there!

  8. Dina, I will be praying for an extra "helping" of God's grace for you this week. Hang in there!

  9. Well, we know Christ let loose on the money changers in the temple, even turning over their tables, so it's not a sin to demonstrate this type of emotion. I think you handled it as well as one possibly could. Anything less may have resulted in her continuing to take advantage of you. You're fine. I'll pray for HER attitude.
    (btw, LOVE this card!)

  10. just keep swimming.....just keep swimming.....swimming swimming swimming :) BIG news @ H & S...check out my blog! Should be able to get the new images out in November after the dust settles :) Remember His Grace is sufficient! {hugs} Sue

  11. ((((Dina)))) I'm praying that God will guide you each step of the way as you continue to learn the customs and ways of the people there. Your blog has given me a better understanding of how to pray for missionaries. Thank you for being willing to share the good and the bad with us.

    I love the coffee card.

  12. Me again...Tagged you on my blog!!(sorry)

  13. {{{{{HUGS}}}}}
    Sounds like today was a growth day.
    I pray His spirit will be on you as you deal with her (and she with you).

    Rockin' card!