I Feel Like a Quote out of Context…

What a week. My host family was wonderful and welcoming. Mona, the mother wanted so badly to marry me off and the 10 year old did her best to convert me to Islam. Don’t worry there is no ring on my finger and I resisted the passionate evangelistic efforts that were headed my way. I got a unique view of what Isalm looks like to a regular family and as I continue to see deeper it all makes more and less sense with every step I take. So I sojourn on. Crack open the Qu’ran. Search the pages of the Bible and now I read the red words with extra care. You see, in Islam the word became book (the Qu’ran), but in Christianity the Word became Flesh. And so I read John 1 again and begin to internalize the truth that I feel in those pages. Friends, the world is so complex and history ebbs and flows and we forget what has gone before us. Sometimes I want to stop trying to make any sense of it, to stop thinking and just accept what I’ve been taught. Too bad there’s something in me that won’t allow me respite. So keep moving forward because I have to know the difference between the truth of Jesus of Nazerth and what the church has made it. Only gold can go through the fire unscathed so I confident that if what I know is truth than I can’t deconstruct it, and the parts that are falling in around me must be done away with anyway. Welcome to the the world of post-modernity and welcome to my life my brain is on overload and I love it. I am studying what matters and I am learning what is important.

On a lighter note, last night I watched Titanic with my host family. It was seriously hilarious. I know I sound heartless laughing about all those people dying, but that wasn’t the funny part. The funny part was that I couldn’t get them to understand what it means to be cold. What it feels like to breath in on a cold, dry day and feel needle pricks on your lungs. Why is there ice in his hair? Why are their lips blue? How do you translate “hypothermia” into Arabic? Anyone? And then they were asking me about the ship itself and I was trying to tell them that no, the actors weren’t really in the ocean and no, the ship you see didn’t really sink like that. Trying to explain the concept of filming a model is really hard. I also showed them pictures of Iowa and they were blown away by the cornfields. Is this heaven? No, its Iowa. So in the words of Ben Folds sometime “I feel like a quote of context” out of place and oceans away from understanding this place that I am in, I miss you guys, but I love it here and plus while the temperatures are still dropping in Indiana its begining to warm up here the warmth wraps around me when I step outside and I think to myself that today might be a perfect day.

There are essays to write and interviews to do this afternoon so I’m leaving now and hopefully I’ll talk to you soon.



Filed under the middle east

4 responses to “I Feel Like a Quote out of Context…

  1. J. DeGeyter

    Iceburg Right ahead- too bad your little cousin wasnt there to hunt penguins. Your time at your homestay seemed so mind stimulating that I think it changed your life…maybe thats too bold to say but, seriously, reading your thoughts amazes me and even challenges me to think about my faith and why. I enjoyed reading this entry and I think that in this world, we are all a quote out of context because we are just tourists in this worldly vacation (credit goes to Ben Taylor’s song that he sang in Battle of the Bands). Have you gotten any mail from me? I hope so.
    I love you.

  2. Nawal Ghali

    Wow Marcia,
    Those are amazing deep thoughts that challenges me to dig deeper too. I have prayed for you so much this week, that God would be so very present to you even in a place that does not acknowledge him, that’s the beauty of our God nothing can contain or limit him. It seems to me that he was not only present but that he touched you and spoke profound words into your soul. I am so excited to see that He is drawing you to dig in his word and see it anew and that you have responded to his call. Keep on digging it is richer then we can ever dream or imagine. Dig In!

    Love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

    I miss you more then words can express and love you even more then live itself.

  3. Bonnie

    I need to write an email in response to that. Please check your inbox a-sap.
    ps. Marcia, how is it that you and Andrew both watched Titanic on the same night with different Egyptian families?

  4. ek

    Wow… excellent thoughts MMG. I love that you are right there in the midst of Islam learning the things that we cannot learn frombooks or second hand experiences. I’m praying that people will see the distinction between Word made Flesh and word made book in the ways that you display Jesus. I see how you are coming to own your faith more and more. You are quite the encouragement to me and you teach me much from what he is teaching you. Thanks for that blessing Marcia. I love you.

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