Tuesday, October 25, 2011

blue, two, three: strangers

Just a few minutes ago, in an email to a dear friend, I wrote:

"Your blog on leadership today was thought provoking ... my parade [Whispered Hopes] often feels like a series of New Orlean's funerals - sad then jazzy then sad ..."

This journey with God is unexpected. There are days when I am inexplicably teary and days when life is lavishly celebrated.

I'm pretty sure that I never formally said yes to leadership, but simply shuffled my feet slightly forward while uttering the word fine! toward God. On this journey, the route often curves in unexpected ways as God connects me to extraordinary voices here at home and abroad.

This fall a local woman passionate about assisting victims of human trafficking brought the book "When Helping Hurts" to my attention. The authors' words expanded my collective images
of poverty, giving me opportunity to see the flaws in my own perceptions, and explore cultural differences in how we view time (monochronic v polychronic) and ourselves (individualism v collectivism). The U.S. norm is not mid-range on either scale.
I am not surprised.

Today, it happened again, in an online friendship formed during the Self-Reliance 30-day writing challenge - a community of bloggers, mentors and peers, from across the globe. Gabi writes of a train ride, meeting among others, Muhammad from Sudan ... "We talked about attraction and homosexuals in Sudan ... religion, human rights and equality, and lots of practical things."

I am awed by her transparency, inspired by her eloquence and courage. Like the authors of "When Helping Hurts" Gabi's blog gives me opportunity to see flaws in my own perceptions, and explore cultural differences in a new light.

blue, two, three: strangers: Last night's train ride was tedious, but interesting. The train from Frankfurt started 10 minutes late and arrived in Düsseldorf 12 minutes...

It was only yesterday that I was an outsider to God's ways ... didn't know the first thing about the way God works.  
Ephesians 2:11-13

I may never fully understand. I am seeking wisdom, casting aside the blinders of indoctrination, and lavishly celebrating God at work in every human breath.


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