Yesterday and today I made some new friends! It seems weird to me, but in my weakened state (having had an anxiety/panic reaction, perhaps due to my thyroid), people have been open and friendly to me, for the most part, especially Asian women.

Yesterday I went to collect a donation for a co-worker’s bridal shower, and it was from an Indian woman, G. She and I had seen each other in the elevator before, but never introduced ourselves or talked much. We had a great conversation about the fires in SoCal, and she mentioned how she cried when she saw a reporter reporting before his house, which was burning down. She also talked about how her sister was new to this country, having come from India not too long ago, and wanted to take the train to see her. For some reason this worried her a great deal and she tried to dissuade her sister but to no avail. When she called her other sister in India and told of her worries, her other sister told G. to let her do what she wanted; for there was no reason for G. to worry.

I took a little nap, for a still felt weak most of the day, and had the symptoms of my thyroid being too low, like when I was on the medication, except this time I was not on the medication. I wondered what could be troubling me and causing me to be anxious? Was it the upcoming celebration for my co-worker that I was planning? Why would I worry about it? Or was it the upcoming plane ride back to the Midwest? Or was it because I had run out of L-carnitine and hadn’t taken it for a week now? I need to get some of that stuff quick!

Today I felt a little better, especially after reading the word and talking to God after a restless, sleepless night. At lunch time after getting the mail (my hangtags I ordered came) I sat down at a bench next to another Asian lady, and somehow we started a conversation that could have gone on forever. She was Vietnamese and ironically she used to live very close to where I live now. She had just lost her father not too long ago and agreed that this made her think of her own mortality. I used the opportunity to ask her if her family was Buddhist, and she said yes, being glad that I asked. She explained to me why she liked being Buddhist–it was because it was a philosophy that said that everyone was uniquely different and needed to find their own path to happiness, even though it all led to the same place. I got to share my faith by telling her that her philosophy was opposite of Christianity, which believed that all people sinned and needed Jesus, and that here was only one truth to God. She seemed very open minded and had even seen The Passion of the Christ, even though she thought it was too violent. We spoke of art–one of her friends out of nowhere suddenly discovered that she had a great talent for ceramics. She thought that I should definitely put DH’s art on Ebay, and that she was always applying for jobs for her husband behind his back. She had also gone to the LA City College too. Her dream job was to get a government job, and I told her mine was to be in the entertainment industry. This perked her interest and we discussed TV and movies. Her fave TV show was Sex in the City, which I did not like. Her comment was, “but sex sells nowadays!” But I was able to point out that family movies sell more, and she agreed with that. I then turned the subject to inspirational movies, and when she asked me what kinds of movies I wrote, I named some similar movies, like Sleepless in Seattle.

Like I said, we could have talked forever. We exchanged phone numbers and emails and I will definitely have to follow-up with her. I told her that her name was similar to my aunt’s–a flower name. She agreed that most Asian women are named after flowers, jewels, moon, or some other fancy romantic object or virtue. I told her that mine was not, and was for the most part a neutral name.

It is obvious to me that my ministry is to be to Asian women, and I have the gift of encouragement and inspiration, to turn people towards what is good. Both women had asked me if I liked it out here in SoCal better, and I agreed that I did. When I mentioned that hubby didn’t like it so much because of the traffic, my Vietnamese friend laughed and said she was not surprised that he was a White American, because an Asian man would not have complained as such, he would have just driven through it and tolerated it.

I thank God for the encouragement. I needed the social interaction. I had asked him why I was suffering from anxiety, and one of the answers came back “self-centeredness”. Pride, indeed, is self-centeredness, and often a preoccupation with what others think of me produces anxiety. I need to keep my mind centered on Him!

Also I realized that during my traumatic time in my old church, some things in me–some pillars of trust had been broken with the spiritual abuse I went through. I asked God to restore those so that I could fully trust him with my life again. Praise God for giving me strength today!