To be a better friend…

My time in Taiwan has really given me the opportunity to reflect on myself and how I can grow as a person. One of the things I learned about myself was that: I’m not that great of a friend…

For those who have read my Just thoughts on shallow friendships, you know that I am opening up to being more open and accepting of new friendships. It amazes me how selfish, thoughtless or insensitive I can get in life when I don’t really think about other people around me. It makes me realize that many times, I cruised through life, accidentally stepping on toes or obliviously leaving others behind. Though it’s a fact of life that I have many flaws, it’s an embarrassing revelation! I know that I’m probably just one of a million people who have these attributes, so if I really think about it, no wonder why the world has problems!

It just amazes me though how God uses different people and occasions to bring me back to the reality of my selfishness. Yesterday, I talked about my lemony misadventures around Tainan with some Taiwanese friends and one of the guys from my team. The Taiwanese girls were a group I thought about when I wrote my last blog. So far, in the 38 days of knowing them, they have dropped many plans they had and took us around town on many different occasions! They took us to the beach, made us try different local delicacies, took my friend to get a haircut, inquired about said friend’s package-mail-troubles and yes, braved unexpected plans with big smiles on their faces! I mean really!!! I would probably NEVER do that! Ok, maybe I will, sometimes, but not that consistently! And because of our botched plans yesterday, they still offered to take us out for waffles today to make up for yesterday’s mishaps! I mean, how selfless could these people get!??

And you know what really got me? Because they knew I was leaving town in less than a week, one of the girls developed and laminated one of the pictures we took at the beach and wrote me a note!

Me and Ivy 🙂

I mean, really! Shouldn’t I be the one to do this as a ‘thank you’?

A note that got me teary!

Seriously, it’s times like this that really shows that it really is the thought that counts! No amount of cash or bling can amount to the feeling I got when I received such a thoughtful good bye gift. I thought this was perfect.

Now apparently, this is only the beginning! We’re meeting again tonight for waffles! AND!!!! A couple more groups of friends are planning dinners and/or little events to bid me good bye.

I don’t know about how other people would react to this kind of treatment, but for me, I definitely feel loved, welcomed and appreciated! And for relationships in early stages, it’s amazing how much lengths people here go to to give me such feelings!

I’m still thinking of ways to say “thank you” to the different people I’ve met here in Taiwan. I don’t know how to express my gratitude to the the different people who went out of their way so that I can have a great time! I guess it is true that you can affect little things in different people’s lives, you can influence and touch lives everywhere you go. I know this for a fact because my new friends just made me want to be a better friend!

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