Andrew and I wandered with my uncle Peter today to a little village outside of Granada. We went with the intent of visiting a family, and when we finished 7 hours later, they had become our family.
Antonio and his wife and daughter and brothers and sisters and wifes and husbands and kids and parents all invited us for migas, a traditional Andaluz dish that is flour fried in olive oil with sausage, onions, peppers, garlic, you get the drift. This gypsy family says they make it when it rains, and they can't work the fields of olives, asparagus, almonds or whatever harvest season it is. It takes two full hours to make such a delicacy, and that's why they only do it when it rains.
We ate until our bellies burst, and laughed until we cried. Then talk turned to music, and guitars suddenly appeared, the small children were summoned, and summoned and then pulled out from underneath the bed they were hiding, and then they sang for us.
And boy did they sing. Rocio, whose name means Dewdrop, sang her heart out, until all our hearts burst simultaneously with her joy. We became again like children, clapping and laughing and tapping our feet until we couldn't hardly contain it.
Then Antonio summoned his daughter, and together they sang until we laughed and cried and burst all over again. Finally, Antonio sang about the Blind Man who asked, "Who is this man, that heals the blind and saves sins?" And we were swept away and worshiped together.
The guitars were put away, the children shuffled away to play again, but we didn't lose that moment, as a battered, paperback Bible was found and opened, and the questions began to pour from their lips as they peppered Peter with question after questions. Simple, yet deeply profound queries such as, "God created light, and then the sun and moon. But the light He created, what is that?" And, "What does chapter 19 in Judges mean? Why did God want us to know about these men that were drawn and quartered after sleeping with the wrong woman?" And, "What does the phrase mean, "sons of God" and "giants in the land?"
And after Peter satisfied their questions with his simple, yet deep answers, they turned to Andrew and I and said, "Tell us something, a story, a testimony of yours." Andrew powerfully talked about his parents and how they went to a tiny village in Africa and faithfully translated the New Testament and how peoples lives were forever changed. He talked about the priest that died, and as he died, he let his religion die with him, so that the next generation would learn about Jesus rather than the spirits. And when the spirits were asked to the nature of his death, they responded with, "we killed him because he wouldn't allow the religion to continue". Everyone hair stood up on on end, and they praised God for moving in a tiny tribe in a corner of they earth they could hardly imagine.
And I told them how I was privileged to meet those humble people, how the old ladies told me I was fat, and they laughed as I explained it meant I was beautiful!
And as we laughed, and then cried as Peter explained he wouldn't always be living in Granada, but God was calling him to different places in the world. They all were deeply moved to tears, but said, God's will be done.
AS we left, I knew we had become family. There was far more shared today than some bread crumbs and sausage and asparagus, there was the holy communion of the saints, and it was so good. Better than any gourmet meal and wine. Humble the food was, even humbler were those who prepared it, and in their humility, we became family that will always be.
This is why I'm here, and today, I found healing as we wandered to a little, insignificant place, but in my mind, I will never forget where I find peace this week.