A visit to my local nail salon is always fascinating. Now, please don’t think poorly of me. This is the one pampering I allow myself. I visit the local Vietnamese nail salon for a pink and white fill. Don’t do the toes, nor the anything else much but this one thing. But I am so glad I have this one little luxury because a one hour visit in that place is simply fascinating, illuminating and shows me so much about what Jesus teaches.
First, when you walk in the door you can’t miss the gold-platted Buddha that sits of to the left. Yep, now don’t get your undies in a twist because I visit a salon with a Buddha. Think about this. Jesus went where the lost, broken, and unsaved went. He ate with the sinners. I find out more interesting things in this place and delve into a sub-culture of America, steeped in a faith of tradition but does little to bring healing and help to the individual.
I’m a regular there and most of the men and women know me. They know I wrote a book, a Christian book, and boy do we have some great conversations. Like today.
I sat with Ken, his American name and he's new to the salon. He spoke very good English. Most of the time I must listen very closely to understand some of the gals and I really try hard to understand because when I breakthrough that language barrier I find they are truly interested in my perspective and thoughts. Ane I am interested in them.
“Ken, what is your real name?” I asked knowing that they all have American names because most American’s can’t figure out how to say their Vietnamese name.
“Hein. Like the ketchup. But I don’t like people to call me ketchup.” He snickers. I giggle.
“What does it mean?”
“That really fits you.”
“Yes, it does.”
At some point in our discussion, I ask Ken about how he arrived in America. He went on to describe five different boat trips, one without food or water for over four days. One boat, which was intercepted by the Russians. The death a suffering of those trying to find a better life. Of a mother whose child died but she carried it around with her because she couldn’t give it up. (hard to read, I know)
Ken looked up at me and said, “That’s why I don’t get upset about some of the silly stuff people get upset over. I have seen the very worst of living. I have gone without food and water. Shivered at night and feared for my life on many occasions. The minor complaints around this place just don’t bother me.”
I just sat and listened. Very humbled. Thinking of all the stupid little things I complain about.
“As long as I have my daughter and wife, that’s all that matters.”
Sometimes I need a reminder about how good I have things. Often I need God to hit me upside the head and have a man from Vietnam remind me how very fortunate I really am. It’s funny that God often does this in the nail salon.
I wonder do they see God in me while they set the pink and white on my nails. I’m praying they do.
I praying that I will never allow my undies to get twisted up. I want to go where the people are who need the truth of Jesus.
My conversation with Ken will continue in the future. We briefly discussed his faith background. He is Catholic and Buddhist. I find that fascinating in itself. So, you can bet Jesus has me getting my nail done in the future. I can’t wait to see what we talk about next.
Be blessed, Lynn