Sometimes words escape us. Tonight my words are too many to scale down for one post. The past few days have been full. I finished up espanol classes yesterday and today has been busy catching the last few glimpses of Xela before I head out for some pure relaxation and reflection. It is hard to leave Xela, this place has come to feel very much like home. But there are other places I need to see and a limited amount of time. So I will keep moving.
Over the past two weeks of being here I’ve come to know some of the local people. We’ve shared stories – many. We have cried tears and laughed so loud it hurt. I have spoken kindergarten spanish to more people than I can count and they have graciously accepted me anyway. I’ve shared the story of my church and how they allowed me the time to return to learn more of this culture. I have given out my card and the “Methodist Church” has gained a curious following from these conversations.
The cultural differences have challenged me and I have found peace with those differences one moment after another. Maybe peace comes in that way when we choose to let it. It is not easy but it is beautiful. There is an author, Anthony de Mello, that has a teaching that likens the way to love to the way as the way we experience the sunrise: new every morning, offering new perspectives, depth and expressions every moment if you stop demanding and simply take the time to see.
There are many lessons here.. some of which I hope to write after some days of rest. I will note a few things tonight before they escape my thoughts:
1. Humility and grace are needed in immeasurable quantities when trying to understand another person or another country. I must never underestimate the need to grow in humility and grace.
2. Toyota makes a vehicle that outlasts all expectation. While one country is trading in for the newest model, the “old” models serve years upon years where they are needed in other countries. Everywhere I turn: Toyota. Thank God for Toyota and bread… two mainstays of this society. And Pepsi….
3. The issues that challenge Christianity or the lifestyle of a disciple or any follower of Christ invade every society. There is but one answer: Love. Just love. Let God handle the struggle; just live Love and you will be plenty busy. The experience of living Love may make all others things fade in comparison.
I really miss my church family tonight. I work with some of the most wonderful people on earth. I serve in a church that IS busy loving and doesn’t have time for much else. We hurt together, heal together and we celebrate together. My heart is full of thanksgiving for this blessing.