George

What Has Been Fun This Summer?

In the ESL Bible class, George asked the question as a warm up.

‘Fun?  I am tackling side effects every day though.”

In a moment I got blank, but yes!  There are still fun things from which I get joy!

I really look forward to the Bible studies on Tuesday and Thursday.

Even if I feel ill, I don’t want to miss those classes.  Yet this is true not only for this summer:  Those classes have been giving me joy, peace, and courage every time through a whole year.

 Gardening 

Since the trip to Carmel, I have been obsessed with gardening.

Since I enjoyed the beauty of the nature around Carmel, I’ve had the desire to have a beautiful healing garden with lots of flowers and greens, and also growing healthy, safe produce.

This is not the first time I got the desire. I have the desire almost every summer  but  I am terrible at gardening:  I kill plants every time I try to grow.  I have zero ability and sense of gardening.

Yet my desire became so strong that I couldn’t resist getting new plants; so this year I got not only flowers but also vegetable plants.

Every morning, it doesn’t matter if I feel sick or not, I go out to the back yard without even changing my PJs, to see my precious plants.

Mini roses, geraniums, Hydrangeas, Jasmines, Asteraceaes, Orchid, herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, lime tree, lemon tree, fig tree, and more—I look at them one by one carefully as though they were my children.

The green tomatoes are growing bigger every day.

Cucumbers started from seeds.

It has been five years to see the fruits finally on this lime tree

 

Every evening, I do the same as  I do watering.

 

Under my poor care, my yard doesn’t look beautiful yet, but because of that, each time if I find new buds, leaves, or fruits coming out, I get so excited that I count them over and over.

‘Our yard may need good soil.  I should make a compost pile recycling kitchen waste.’

Once I bought the composter, making and waiting for the compost – which takes at least 3 months – became fun, as well!

 

I wonder when I can have the first home-made produce on the dinner table.

I can’t wait!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Valentine

This year’s Valentine’s Day was Thursday when an ESL class was held.

As I asked students who came to the class if they had any special plan that night, Mr. H, a young Korean doctor, answered,

“ I wanted to go somewhere to a nice restaurant with my wife tonight, but she said she wanted me to cook at home because she was too busy to go out working on her doctoral dissertation. But in Korea, Valentine’s Day is a day that men receive gifts from women, so I am a little confused.”

Sounds like Korea has the same custom as Japan where single girls make their confession of their love to men by sending chocolate on Valentine’s day, while here in the U.S., it is a day for couples to express their love regardless of their gender, age, or marriage status.

The origin of St. Valentine’s Day

According to Dan Vraa, George’s friend, St. Valentine was a priest in Rome about in 270 A.D. In those days Romans were worshiping multiple gods including the Roman Emperor and Christians who refused to worship their gods were persecuted. The priest Valentine was not an exception and he was also thrown into a prison.

He had a beautiful flower garden and his neighborhood children sent him  flowers to comfort him through a jailer’s blind girl. While the girl who accepted this role and the priest were developing a friendship, the priest had prayed that God would give her her eyesight.  When the miracle happened and she was healed, she and her family including relatives,44 people accepted Christ as their savior and converted into Christians.  Yet, that made the emperor so mad that he ordered to execute the priest.  Before the priest was beheaded, in his last letter to the girl, he signed as “ from your Valentine”.

The priest Valentine who loved the Heavenly Father, who sent Jesus to suffer for us, and die for us, more than anything and love others more than his own life, was a great follower of Jesus, who taught us,

“ “Greater love has no one then this: that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).

Giving honor to the priest Valentine, since then Christians signed “ from your Valentine” at the end of their letters in order to show their genuine affection.

 Cancer Cannot Steal Love

After we learned how Jesus taught us to love one another in the class,  Mr. H, whose face changed from uncertain to radiant, said,

“ I am going to cook a great dinner to show my wife how much I love her!”

And I, who was also encouraged to give George the best Valentine’s day, cooked ravioli, his favorite dish, and baked raspberry heart shaped cookies.

Valentine's Day 2013 valentine's day cookies

With nice music, candle lights, flowers sent to me from George, and nice wine, we made a good time to celebrate our Valentine’s day.

Although we are in the midst of the cancer storm, cancer cannot steal love, and I have “ my Valentine” who is willing to walk with me and who is loving me so deeply.

I am blessed.