We just had a party for Mateja's 19th birthday! :)
Our group has a birthday tradition of each telling how we've been blessed by the birthday person. Last night we all loved listening to and thinking about how Mateja is loving, wise, gentle, understanding, truthful. I loved thinking about how I appreciate Mateja's friendship. She's been sad and happy with me in the past months. What a treasure you are to us all, Mateja.
Christina and I were thinking about all the people that we see all the time in our neighborhood. There's a lot of them: the people upstairs, the people downstairs, the people on our floor. The new mom, the drunk guy, the fruit guy and his brother, the bread lady that looks sad, the snobby lady, the old man that Christina thinks is an angel, the Čajna Hiša man, the couple that run the Mom & Pop store. I don't think I've ever had more than a 5 minute conversation with any of them, but I see them every week. Why don't we have a party and invite them all?
We stayed up late planning our party. The guest list has sixty people on it... our house isn't that big... but man, are we enthusiastic! We'll see. Why not try, huh? :)
--the deliberate and systematic extermination of an entire national, racial, political, or cultural group(Dictionary.com)
The American government was moving towards an acknowledgment the Armenian Genocide (1.5 million Armenians were killed by the Young Turks, 1915-17). Turkey reminded the US that it's not good timing, threatening to make our efforts in Iraq more difficult. The United States has caved to the pressure. That's it. A loud noise and silence. More loud silence.
I've been troubled, angry, confused, sorrowful, deeply pained and silent as I've been researching and reflecting on the Armenian genocide. My cousin, Greg, pointed out that victims of violent crime need people to listen and respond with outrage. Will this ever happen for the Armenian people?
Three aspects that are plaguing me:
The Armenian Genocide happened to us.
Currently, most Armenians side-step it or live in hatred and bitterness. Remembering the Genocide is a huge part of our national identity. Is there more?
Turkish government is set on covering up reality.
I'm so upset by all of this. And I can't figure out what to do about it. Where is the voice of justice? Where it the voice of peace?
I'd written this on my recipe card. Funny, maybe... But is that what we're going for?? I need to admit that I am not a springform pan expert or advocate. A spingform pan has sides that spring off, making the cake beautiful and easy to serve.
I have a chocolate cake recipe that calls for a springform pan. So, I bought one. I don't know if it's cheap springform or bad recipe (or...inexperienced baker?? no!), but I do know that Saša got the ugliest birthday cake I've ever seen. AND not one person tried it at her party.
Ugly means there was more for me...not exactly what I was going for...
Also, the anti-biotics worked! I'm feeling much better. :)
Obviously, it was genocide. No question. 1.5 million Armenians were killed by Turks in the early 1900s. But is now the time to deal with it? I don't know. What do we do about it? I don't know.
In general, I believe that you've got to notice the wound, scrub it out and bandage it up before you can expect healing. And in general I believe that sooner is better than later. However, my thoughts on this have always been on a small scale. A scraped knee, in relationship with my roommate, my family...maybe as big as a church...but on a national scale?? Dealing with innumerable murders? Is it the same? How do you decide the time? Why is America involved? Why can't Turks just admit the problem?
Over the past few months, I've been increasingly burdened for the area of town called Rožna Dolina. Hundreds of students live in one city block. I just can't get them off my mind. This evening I was again walking through the complex and couldn't help but notice the ridiculous number of alcohol bottles. Depraved and precious. Wretched and loved. We're all both. I'm honestly afraid for these precious people. I look around and realize that I really am separated. And I don't know what to do about the situation.
I'm praying that God would: -move into the dorms, powerfully -change these students into generation that seeks Him -have whole-hearted followers living in each building -send his glory forth from here
I'm praying that none would be lost, that students would know LOVE. I just don't know what else to do right now. I walk and pray and wonder if me praying makes a difference. I wonder and I know that it does. But does it? I believe and I ask for faith.