It's been a interesting yet refreshing week in Bangkok. I've been spending a lot of time with Stephen in coffee shops, writing and studying. I have battled with different things; the pull between sightseeing and just taking the time to stop and take stock has been very real. I have battled with thoughts of 'you're wasting your time - go and see the city' and yet I have felt incredibly content these past few days, just spending my hours in the local area of Bangkok where our friends live. It's been a different kind of discovery. A whole other type of exploration.
Of course, I enjoy going to see the places all the blogs and tourists tell you to see. But sometimes, you simply don't have to.
So you might be thinking: 'Lydia - if you've not been sightseeing, tell me, what have you been doing?'
After the adrenaline of last week, having a quieter few days has given me an outlet for writing and a whole lot of prayer. I have been able to sit and meditate seriously on what life will look like for me when I return to the UK; what should I focus on? What should I give my time to? These are questions that I want to be continually asking myself. How am I spending my time and why? What's God's heart and does this or that help me move towards it?
I was thinking a lot about hearts when I took myself to the King's Park in Eastern Bangkok, not far from where we're staying. I walked around the park and prayed for many things; the hearts of the people in Bangkok, the hearts of people back home, and for guidance in what I'm doing. It really was beautiful surroundings and gave me a peace so strong that all of my questioning and 'flapping about' melted away. Here are a few pics...
This week has been a big lesson for me - that putting pressure on myself to make sure I tick all the tourist boxes in places I visit is not helpful and totally unnecessary. In fact, sometimes by forcing myself to do all of those things, I might miss something else. On Tuesday, we got lost and ended up meeting some Christians in a supermarket and I met up with them again (more on that in a future blog). So over seeing a place, I saw people and made yet another connection. That was pretty cool.
But don't get me wrong, I'll be seeing places too, just in a measured way and not out of obligation.
That's just some of my thoughts from a quieter week so far.
I hope you're well and have happy days,