Wednesday, February 13, 2013

God's Not an American

I remember a scene from U2’s Rattle and Hum movie where the band set-up in downtown San Francisco, I believe, and played a live concert in the middle of the workday. During the clip, Bono spray paints a bridge and then yells over the crowd, “Rock’in Roll stops the traffic”. Why would I remember such a random scene you ask? Well a friend told me a couple of day ago that two male lions shut down traffic just outside his neighborhood here in Nairobi. It didn’t make the paper here, but it hit Facebook by storm a few days later. You can see from the pictures that these two young male lions had nothing but time on their hands and no real need to get a move on so that the everyone could get to work on time. Can you imagine flying in the office door late, rushing into that meeting you’re suppose to be at and saying, “sorry, there were lions blocking the road this morning. Traffic was backed up for miles.” All in a days work here in Kenya. Crazy to think that in less than a day I could be back sitting in road construction traffic on 635 in Dallas. Our world is pretty small. Last week I got to attend a Bible study that Kerry has been going to for a while. It falls on a Thursday night, the night I usually meet a bunch of guys to play basketball, but my knee has been the size of mango and killing me, so bball was not an option. She asked me to come along, so I did. The study is led by a priest from Manchester who is 60 and attended by couples from Italy, Germany, Poland, Britain, Scotland, Ireland, Canada, the United States, Kenya and hosted by a couple from India. Protestants and Catholics, young and old, kids in their 30’s and kids in 3rd grade. It really is a glimpse into what “brothers and sisters in Christ” should really look like. The Manchester Priest is amazing in how he leads the group and it was a treat to be in his company. We were studying from the book of Saint Luke, remember he’s a Catholic priest, in the 8th chapter. After teaching through it he asked about verse 18, “Therefore consider carefully how you listen. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he thinks he has will be taken from him.”. It was absolutely amazing to hear people as they answered with their culture and faith journey all speaking into their answers. It opened my eyes to how small my world really is in my thinking and processing of scripture. How do we listen, or as not to offend you, how do I listen? I listen with such a small perspective. It is not completely my fault since my culture, my education, my upbringing, my church background, my patriotism is a big part of who I am. I wasn’t born a German or Indian, can’t explain why, but God brought me into the world as an American. But, I need to be aware that as I listen, I listen with a bias towards my past, my culture, my journey. Meaning my listening needs to be with an open heart and mind, because God is not an American citizen. More next week on verse 18.