Sunday, January 18, 2009

A Day In The Village...


Today was amazing! I absolutely love to travel, of course, and we were able to take a 3 hour car ride to another village. We went to see Josh's good friends who are newly married and like family to him. It was one of the most Muslim cities in this country and it was very intriguing to me. I learned a lot today.

Riding in the car with Josh was like riding on a personal tour bus with a professional tour guide to teach you about the culture. Granted, his teaching abilities are better than his driving abilities which were a little scary on the already scary roads here, but anyway!

Everywhere we go, I pretty much have my notebook handy and I take notes to write down new words, or new things about this culture. I am sure I drive him crazy sometimes, but I'm hungry! What can I say? I am a nerd at heart! I'm thankful that Josh taught me many things about this city.

I wish I could write about it publicly, but I have to resort to hints. However, I have my own personal journal and I took many notes today about this city to help me remember. Julie said she always feels the most oppressed in this place because it is one of most dark places. It may be dark spiritually, but I only felt the love of God really strongly! Lately, whether I am among the Christians or the Muslims, all I feel is God's love.

I must explain that at the beginning of every first meeting I have with someone who is from here, it is always awkward. A few days ago, I thought, "Maybe the people don't like me or maybe they are just shy." I have come to realize that they are not very open at first and very shy. However, as they get to know you, they warm up. They not only open up with conversation, but they are very giving!

This type of situation happened today. Once we arrived, I was on the outside of course, not knowing but a few words here and there, which I might add is getting a little better!!! I was pretty excited to understand a few things they were talking about without translation! We went into their home which was very cold except for only one room that they can afford to keep warm. The house was very simple and unique.

At the beginning, it was only Josh, Julie, me, Moses (their child), and the husband and wife that welcomed us to their home. Later on, though, it seemed as if the whole village came over to see the "visitors." (I also actually took pictures today for the first time! I have to ask Josh which ones I can post so I will try to post them at a later time.) They fed us lunch as we sat on the floor on the tablecloth as is their usual custom.

They cooked us a type of pita bread with red meat on top that you roll up after spraying lemon juice over it. On the side was a type of salad they have here often which you place inside the pita bread like a sandwich. On the side was also soup, which might I add, that everyone drinks out of! Out of the 6 of us, there were only 2 bowls of soup. We each had our own silverware, but shared from the same plates and bowls. Interesting right? For drinks they offered us cola, orange soda, or this type of yogurt milk which pretty much tasted like sour milk. However, I tried it with a smile! I loved all of the food and it was sooo good!

The wife of the household was 22 years old and so sweet! She was so beautiful and had so many pretty head scarves! At first she was very quiet, but towards the end of the night she was pinching my cheeks, locking arms with me as we walked through the village, bought me souvenirs at the museum we visited, and gave me one of her hand made head scarves! I felt so loved as we left. Her husband also had such a gentle and soft heart unlike most of the men here.

During lunch, Josh was able to explain about Jesus being the only sacrifice for us to them. They had mentioned about animal sacrificing during one of their holidays as it is a form of repentance. Then, they give the meat to the poor as a form of penance perhaps? Anyway, they asked Josh if we as Christians did the same thing, and Josh said, "No. In the old days they used to sacrifice animals to repent, but then Jesus came and He was the perfect sacrifice for us so we don't have to do that anymore." It was such an awesome opportunity for him to talk about Jesus!

As we left, Josh prayed over the house that the peace of God would stay in their home and it would be blessed. I could see that there was such a deep relationship Josh and Julie have formed with these people and I could see that they truly loved each other. I know they felt the love of God as much as I felt the love of God in that place. There were so many precious moments today!

Time for bed after a looooong day! Blessings and stay tuned!

1 comment:

Lindsay said...

Mary Kat! This is awesome. I love this lady and husband too now! I have a question (sorry if I sound like an idiot) but what language are you practicing there? I'm so curious!