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.