Showing posts from February, 2015

Dialogues: Do Americans put salt in their tea?

Fifi: Do Americans put salt in their tea?
Me: No.
Fifi: Really?
Me: Yeah. I'm pretty sure.

I don't know why, but she's asked me this question about three times now. Maybe she saw an American putting white sugar in their tea and mistook it for salt? Most of the sugar here is unrefined (brown) so I can see how that mistake would be made. Whatever the case, I've had a hard time convincing her that salted tea really isn't a thing in America.
In fact, I'm still not sure that she's convinced.
We'll see if it comes up again.

Dialogues: Do Americans dance in church?

During a very animated worship time at church last night:

Fifi: Do Americans dance in church?
Me: No (not like this, anyway).
Fifi (in shock and horror): Seriously?
Me: Seriously.
*Fifi favors me with one of her wide-eyed expressions of complete disbelief.*
Because if you don't dance during worship, what are you supposed to do?

White Person!

You know you've been here a while when...

You're walking down the street in your neighborhood and you see a white person and your train of thought goes like this:

Oh. My. Goodness. What on earth is he doing here? Wonder if I should talk to him? Hmm...maybe he doesn't speak English. Should I try English or Portuguese? This could be awkward if I choose the wrong language.
And by that point, of course, you've already passed each other by.
But the fact remains that there was a white person in your neighborhood. 
And you've been talking about it ever since.

The Choice to Love; Part IV

Go HERE for links to parts I, II, and III
The Choice to Love; Part IV
Tired of the capacity for choice, I asked to be made to fall in love with Jesus. The Holy Spirit replied, "Don't you know that true love is always a choice?"

And then I realized that, of course, I was asking for the coward's way out. I was so tired of trying to choose Him that I wanted to be relieved of the responsibility of choice.

But blind obedience requires little bravery, and blind love is no true love at all.

He proved His love for me, even though He was fully aware of the horrific consequences. Now, He asks that I prove my love for Him, not by becoming mindless, sightless and choiceless, but by making a choice.

By being aware that His footsteps lead to a cross, but choosing to walk in them, anyway.

By knowing how much it will hurt to die to to myself, but asking Him to crucify me, anyway.

By being aware of the scorn, contempt, ridicule, judgment and hatred that surrounds those who obey Him, b…

Dialogues: Do you like to cook?

São: Do you like to cook?
Me: Yeah, I do.
S: Do you want to make lunch for all of us?
M: Uh...right now?
S: Yes.We want to taste some American food.
M: Umm...sure.
*fridge raiding ensues, and the mental gymnastics of how to make 'American food' in someone else's kitchen, with limited time and only a handful of Mozambican spices.*
S: I'm going to take your picture so you can show it to your mom.
*I smile a little too enthusiastically*
I made beef and potatoes and onions and garlic and carrots and tomatoes in a frying pan. With Italian seasoning (because that was about the only familiar seasoning I could find). I'm not sure how 'American' it was. But...
S: This food is good. You could get married next week.
So there is that.

The Choice to Love; Part III

Go HERE for links to parts I & II
The Choice to Love; Part III
I began to realize how much my Savior loved me and this realization awakened my desire to please Him and to love Him more fully. But along with that came a fear of what 'pleasing Him' would entail.

I passed through a time of intense spiritual exhaustion. Over and over again, God asked me to do things that were terrifying or seemingly impossible. I wanted desperately to obey Him, and I would fight with myself to say 'yes'. More often than not, though, it seemed that I would lose the fight...and then I would have to live with the horror of my sinfulness and the knowledge that, once again, I had failed the One who loved me. This pattern exhausted me mentally, emotionally, even physically at times. I knew, in the midst of every crisis of obedience, that the Holy Spirit was ready and eager to give me strength. However, I could not summon the willpower even to accept the help I needed, and seemingly, God wasn…

The Choice to Love; Part II

Did you miss Part I? You can find it HERE.
The Choice to Love; Part II
Word forms: woos, wooing, wooed1. to seek the affection, favour, or love of (a woman) with a view to marriage2. (transitive) to see after zealously or hopefully3. (transitive) to beg or importune (someone)

I'm not entirely certain why, but the word 'woo' always makes me laugh in a nervous sort of way. It's a strange sounding word that causes me to feel vaguely defenseless. It seems inescapable; something that I cannot alter.

I have never been a huge fan of all of the 'married to Jesus' stuff afloat in the world today, because the phrase usually seems like a way to either shame those people deemed in too great a hurry to get married or as a way for women who want to avoid a relationship to say 'no' without actually have to say no. So the whole idea of 'wooing' and 'Jesus' being part of the same sentence makes me distinctly uncomfortable. But 'wooing' is t…