Power up? Like fueling up on food? Energy for the daily battleground commute getting run into and pushed around...?Nope. Every evening I prepare for the next morning by getting my clothes, accessories, breakfast, lunch, and purse ready so I'm not scrambling. (I'm not a morning person!) There's something wrong with that list. Physical well being? Some variation of eggs, fermented soybeans, fruit, oatmeal, depending on the day. Check. Physical appearance appropriate for fashionable retail clients and executive meetings? Check. Responsible grown up belongings like cell phone, charger, money, key, business cards, ID? Check. So what's missing? Inside. How is it that at times you can feel awful even when healthy, warm, and well fed? There's a huge other component to life that has to be taken care of too. My pastor taught on the power of prayer, and it was clear to me that I was relying on myself on a regular basis until I hit a roadblock. "God I need your help after I can't do it." There's an assumption that I can independently do many things. I live in the world he created, breathing the air he made, living with the life he gave me and body he designed, so I'm not at all independent. I've decided if I can wake up to shower and eat, I can definitely wake up for more important things like this! My morning routine now starts at 6:30, so far so good (this week). I know 6:30 really isn't so bad, especially to any moms who read this, but I grew up being the last one out of bed, easily sleeping at least 10 hours. God has been giving me baby steps to adjust to less and less sleep. 6 used to be plenty, but now with lots to adjust to it's not quite enough to feel rested. If I become a mom some day and think about this I will probably laugh and wish I could get solid 6 hours straight.
Speaking of adjustment, here's a list of Japanese business manners that are finally becoming pretty natural. I was telling my boyfriend about them and based on his surprised response I figured maybe this is unusual and worth sharing.
-order of seating according to rank in relation to the entrance for any meeting -order of exchanging business cards in order of rank -how to exchange: below the other person's, with both hands, bowing, keep it out the whole meeting, etc -when to stand -when to sit -when to put out slippers, when to turn/fix visitors' shoes -how to enter the room, entering and leaving -how to serve tea, order of cup and sweets, direction of spoon -what to say upon entering and exiting the room -walking clients out, push elevator button, what to say, bow low and remain bowing until doors close -two types of formal Japanese -written formal Japanese, different than spoken
Everyone does this at my company depending on who is available, or not involved in that meeting. It's a lot to remember since this is only the expected etiquette outside of my actual job responsibilities but I'm so grateful for being able to learn all this.
I agreed to paint for the youth/young adult service to go along with the teaching. I finally got back into painting Friday night (until 5am...still not doing well getting more sleep). The message was on discipleship, following Jesus Christ, and one of the passages was Matthew 4:19-20. And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed him. I got an image right away when I read "net" and "follow" so here is the result. I imagined the net being left (in the foreground) and then following the unknown path ahead. The painting is almost as tall as I am!