"I will sing to the LORD,
because He has dealt bountifully with me."
Privileged. I am privileged.
It doesn't always - often - doesn't feel like it. There is a lot that's hard. If I want to complain, I have plenty of material. ;) But there is also a lot of blessing here, a lot of uniqueness I am privileged to experience.
I don't have a car. It's hard to get anywhere quickly.
But life is a lot simpler. And walking is good for me!
I am far from most other expats. A lot live in Shanghai, but I only know one family living close to us.
But we are privileged to be able to get to know the people here - we may be the only Americans they ever have as neighbors.
We are far from family and friends.
But some relationships have gotten stronger as a result, as we're intentional to email and skype.
There are food safety concerns.
But there are issues with some foods in America too, so in many ways we're eating healthier over here because we have to.
Quick and convenient foods are more expensive and/or hard to find.
But I always wanted to cook almost completely from scratch. Now I'm forced to, and it's delicious!
The house gets dirty quickly as the dust from pollution settles...
But being forced to clean more makes the house more inviting and company-ready, and it's making me get quicker at the chores.
I miss blue sky.
But there's nothing like the Chinese willow tree beside water...
This list is far from exhaustive. The hardships are real, but I don't want to focus on them. I want to focus on the blessings, on things to be thankful for. There are many in this season...
Lord, help me to see Your blessings in the everyday.