Sunday, March 25, 2007

I wandered a little further away from Granada last Sunday, and met some really unique people. They live in a place where worshipping Jesus isn't the hip thing to do, but spite of the opposition, they follow him.

I wept as I heard them sing, and wept even more when I heard my dad weep. He and I, and many thousands, have prayed for a long time, and I never thought we'd be a part of the miracle. God's gospel, His good news, changes lives, and in the last year and half, I've seen this over and over again.

In our western mindset and culture, miracles don't happen. We scorn the Virgen of Lourdes, the pilgrimidge of Mecca, the journey to Santiago. We think people are searching for lost causes, and its true, but we don't offer than any other options, so they continue to march around the black stone, worship at the feet of idols and bloody their toes proving their dedication.

We come upon a most holy moment for the Catholic world. In my mind, its both a dark and a light moment. I'll never forget seeing the lone Christ figure on the cross, and hear the weeping of the crowd. In the same breath, I'll never forget the emotion, the excitement that occured when a small, white statue of a woman came out the humble church and people swooned with emotion.

God is bigger than the Virgen de las Angustias, the road to Santiago, and Mecca. However, we don't really believe it until we see it. More of us are like Thomas than we want to admit.

I've been prviledged to see it, last weekend with a small group of hardy souls, who know Christ and his suffering. Take my word for it, its powerful, this crazy thing we call the gospel.
I wandering a little further away from Granada last Sunday, and met some really unique people. They live in a place where Christianity is not yet acknowledged as a legal religon, and so they meet secretly. Ironically, the small building is close to the authorities local hq.

I wept as I heard them sing, and wept even more when I heard my dad weep. He and I, and many thousands, have prayed for a long time, and I never thought we'd be a part of the miracle. God's gospel, His good news, changes lives, and in the last year and half, I've seen this over and over again.

In our western mindset and culture, miracles don't happen. We scorn the Virgen of Lourdes, the pilgrimidge of Mecca, the journey to Santiago. We think people are searching for lost causes, and its true, but we don't offer than any other options, so they continue to march around the black stone, worship at the feet of idols and bloody their toes proving their dedication.

We come upon a most holy moment for the Catholic world. In my mind, its both a dark and a light moment. I'll never forget seeing the lone Christ figure on the cross, and hear the weeping of the crowd. In the same breath, I'll never forget the emotion, the excitement that occured when a small, white statue of a woman came out the humble church and people swooned with emotion.

God is bigger than the Virgen de las Angustias, the road to Santiago, and Mecca. However, we don't really believe it until we see it. More of us are like Thomas than we want to admit.

I've been prviledged to see it, last weekend with a small group of hardy souls, who know Christ and his suffering. Take my word for it, its powerful, this crazy thing we call the gospel.
Our pastor often begins his prayers with "Padre Santo" or "Padre Nuestro". Holy Father and Our Father are ancient terms, but rarely used in this day and age outside of the Catholic church. I've wondered why he uses these names but enjoy it every time he does.

Finally, while he was praying today, it dawned on me. Miguel is an orphan. His mother abandoned him at an orphanage at a young age, and he's never known his father or half siblings.

However, at the age of 16, he wandered into an evangelical church, looking for a particular girl. He left instead with Jesus as his Lord.

I wonder when he realized that God was his Father. Unlike any man I've met, he knows this with a deep and quiet passion that one only realizes when he starts his prayers with Padre Nuestro. He knows the Father as his one and only.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Today I went wandering by myself up to Guejar Sierra. This is a little village about 20 kilometers outside of Granada.

I have a friend named Elke, a German large animal vet, who lives there, actually just outside of the village. She's got 10 horses now, about 4 days, and a plethora of cats. She and her partner are trying to establish a trail riding business. They just purchased 5 more horses, and they desperately need people to come and work out their horses.

I can't believe that I live here. This ancient city, nestled among some of the most rugged mountains I've ever seen, is one of the most charming places in the world. I also have the good fortune to know someone who begs me to come ride her horses. It's an incredible opportunity.

Millie is a funny Spanish horse that I ride. She walks as if she were dancing, its really funny! My low back usually hurts for days after I ride her, cuz her gait is like most Spanish women, rolling with style. She was a little funky today because she had something wrong with her mouth, but we had a great time going up the hill a bit, and looking out over the valley.