The Beauty Within
There is a fruit in Vietnam that I have become familiar with and enjoy. It is one of the main holiday fruits that is given during the Tet (Chinese New Year) season. This fruit is called Bưởi in Vietnamese or pomelo in English. It is in the grapefruit family. It has taken me about 3 years to really conqueror the peeling of this fruit. It is quite an extensive job to get through the tough outer skin then peel back the thick membrane that surrounds the juicy fruit sections.
This Tet season, as I peeled one of the Bưởi we were given, I had an illustration to come to mind. As I gave much energy and time to get to the center of this fruit where the juicy and delicious fruit was, I thought of the outer layers that I had to "fight" through to get to the beauty of this fruit! Is it worth the fight and the energy? Yes, I believe it is. One Bưởi (and that is a big piece of fruit) is only 230 calories and it packs some great nutritional value. One fruit gives you over 600% of your daily value of Vitamin C. One fruit gives you 37% of your daily value of potassium. One fruit gives you 6 g of fiber. One fruit gives you 4.6 g of protein. One fruit gives you 10% of your daily value of Vitamin B-6. And you even get some of your calcium for the day from this fruit! Geez! There's some good stuff there to keep a body healthy and all for just 230 calories (for those calorie watchers out there)! (Reference: https://g.co/kgs/1GxMNu)
Many times we see the outer tough layer that surrounds people and fail to see what lies deep inside hidden by the outer layer. It takes time, energy, and patience to peel past the outer layer and then the thick membrane to get to the reward of knowing that person...the beauty within. But when we take the time and energy with patience guiding the process, we can come into a relationship that nourishes our life tremendously!! We are divinely designed to need people. There is much research that documents that people need support networks of other people. This is one of the hallmark traits of people who are resilient through the tough stuff of life...they have a support network that they draw strength and help from. Positive and healthy relationships are packed with good nutrients for our lives!
Another interesting tidbit about the Bưởi is that the outside skin can be used for healthier hair. Now I don't know much about this. I just had a local tell me that he knows people in Vietnam (including his family) will boil the outside skin and then use the water to wash their hair in. It has been used to help with hair loss and seems to help increase the health of their hair.
As I reflect on this...I think of the Proverb that speaks of friends sharpening friends like iron sharpening iron. Even the interactions we have that are not pleasant or may seem more difficult like the tough skin of the fruit...they still provide a benefit into the health of our lives.
The main take-away? Take time for relationships. We need them! They are more valuable than we often realize! Even the tough ones!!
Here are some pictures of my process of peeling the Bưởi. Actually after I finished this Bưởi, I learned a better and easier method that I will use next time...we are always learning!
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Cindy writes about her adventures, observations, and other nuggets from living in another nation. She and John live in SE Asia. She will also share nuggets from her 58 plus years of life.