i've been reading friends' blogs this afternoon, working on a project for our website (http://www.connectingstudents.net) and CD project. it's fun catching up with everybody, but sometimes i also find myself wanting to do what they're doing, feeling even a bit disappointed because they seem to be doing so much cool stuff. traveling all over. seeing the mountains, cold weather and even snow. learning much more hindi than me. getting to visit other friends and just have adventures that i find myself a bit jealous of...

but when i really think about it, i don't want to be anywhere else. i have to admit, i never imagined i'd be working in the 8th largest city in India, hanging out with college students. i thought i'd live somewhere much more "traditional," like varanasi; or further south, like chennai; or maybe that i'd just spend more of my time here traveling and moving. but fortunately, the choice really wasn't up to me! i mean, it was, but it was more of choice of, do i trust God and follow His lead, or try to make my plans happen? let me tell you, this is another one of those times when i am SO glad that He knows what He's doing, and what i really need!

there are definitely things i don't like about my city, my job, and my life. it's too polluted. students are so fickle and unpredictable. i miss my family and friends, and i wish we were closer to more of my friends here. it rains too much and it never gets really cool. sometimes i feel like i have no direction and just want something more structured. i wish i wasn't here as a single girl, but with my husband.

i could go on, but that's not really the point. what i've realized is that my life is so indescribably better than i could have ever imagined it would be. i've screwed up a lot, and i definitely don't deserve to be as blessed as i am. seriously. it still just amazes me when i really stop and think about it all, the bigger picture of my life and how God's had His hand in it, even since before i was born (Psalm 139). and there are also so many cool/funnny/suprising/insane little things always happening around me that i sometimes just need to remind myself of how good things really are.

here are just a few examples from this week:

-Monday was Dussera (major Hindu holiday)--ate lunch with my friend and her family

- and also Ghandi's birthday, which we celebrated by seeing "Lage Raho Munna Bhai", the new hit movie driven by Ghandigiri, or living like Ghandi

-discovered that Pune has a Mocha, a FABULOUS coffee hangout place--we had great coffee and a fabulous evening of hanging out with friends

-Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are randomly filming their new movie (about Daniel Pearl's kidnapping in Pakistan)

-i've had a several really cool and deep conversations and connections with people this week, all very unexpected

-through the marvel of the internet, i was able to talk to one of my dearest friends the other morning, and i just downloaded the first episode of LOST season 3

i know there's more, but these are just a few cool things. life really is good--i'm just learning that you have to learn how to look at it all the right way. easier said than done, but better than anything else i could imagine. alright, i'm out...LOST is calling my name :)

1 shout outs!:

julie said...

mandi--i miss you and appreciate this blog and all your honesty and randomness. i think our time together in vietnam is one of my all-time favorite memories! i hope you're well and glad that life is moving along for you. see you in less than three months. yay!