20 August 2007

Križ (pronounce Kree sh)(means Cross)

Absolutely wonderful. Really. Križ, our two-year theological school, is off to a beautiful start. On the last evening Benjamin Hlastin, a Slovene man who was teaching said, "I could die happy now." He's dreamed of maturing, Christian Slovenes for years. And here they are!! Let me present the first official class of Križ:Along with morning and evening class, we....
drank lots of coffee
watched incredible sunsets
ate good Slovene meals at the gostilna
we played hearts, hearts, and more hearts
sang some songs
talked long and deep
explored questions and learned to ask more
spoke Scripture to one another
hung in the hammock
celebrated three birthdays (Sebastian, me, Katka!)
quoted Nacho Libre
and totally enjoyed being together.I've realized some insecurity I have in ministry and it was really good to deal with some of that. Ephesians talks about identity and roles. Also, in studying John, I've got a renewed and clearer picture of Jesus. He is amazing. And I'm drawn again into knowing him more deeply.

15 August 2007

something in her eyes

I met a woman tonight. I see her everyday sitting on the green benches with all the drunk men. Dirty, confused, rude...drunk. This time she was sitting alone and smoking. Was she waiting for me to come?

I parked my car, knowing it was time. When I walked close, she got up. Unsteady, and I helped her like I help Grandma. Slow and dizzying. We got into the car. I thought she wanted a ride. She wanted to sit together and talk. And we did--up and down and all over and back. In Slovene. In English. Liliana and Anna, sometimes in formal language, sometimes informal. Back and forth. I teared up. I laughed. She got quiet. She got loud. Were we talking about actuality or imagination? What is most real?

When I finally did drop her off, she stopped. Focused her eyes on mine, touched my face with her hand and held it there.

"Welcome to Slovenia." I smiled and thanked her. But sincerity pushed her on. "No, really."

"Welcome to Slovenia."

It was Jesus tonight. Jesus that I cried and laughed while she talked, that I could see her eyes. Jesus that she welcomed me here.

12 August 2007

a hat club

Off to the seaside for a few days of relaxing and reading and sun and sleeping and floating on an air matress. This is the crew. We'll probably laugh some, too.