Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I'm bored!

During the candidate week at The Mission Society we participated in a ropes course. The events were fun, and I enjoyed the team building exercises, although, at one point, I was sitting around waiting for other people to make some decisions. I found myself completely bored, wanting to move on, better things awaited us, and I could hardly stand it!

I was vocal, I stated that I was bored, but when my part came along, I gladly helped out and added my piece, although, I really just wanted to move on. Two big observations about myself; one, I was vocal, and two, I have this need to be doing something, pretty much all the time.

Ethiopian Food

One of the nights of missionary candidate week, we took a trip to a local Ethiopian Restaurant--Queen of Sheba. We did not know where we were going, other than to eat an international meal. We were told upon arrival of one caveat, we could not speak English, nor could English be spoken to us! This was by far one of my favourite experiences I had all week.

To order our food we could act like animals and point--to find out what type of meat it was, we could make faces, but under no circumstances could we speak English. I did cheat so that I could drink some sweet tea, but seeing a bunch of adults trying to figure out what to eat and choosing the most random of items (the menu was give to us in another language), was quite difficult, and absolutely hilarious!

The food was excellent. Ethiopian food is served on one big platter, "sponge" bread at the bottom, each persons meat order on top of the bread. We would take a piece of sponge bread and meat, and then eat off of the platter, each of us trying each others special dish! And yes, we ate with our hands! =)

At the end of the meal we celebrated Jennifer's birthday with a coffee ceremony. We were brought coffee beans to smell, before the coffee was brewed. The coffee was served in tiny--maybe 2 oz. cups, with popcorn. In Ethiopia coffee is typically served at breakfast. Popcorn or nuts are given with the coffee, because people do not want to eat a heavy meal, before manual labor. I did eat a little bit of popcorn and coffee--even though I do not care for either, it was a cultural experience that I enjoyed.

Real worship!

While I was in Atlanta, GA, for The Mission Society candidate week, I had some fantastic opportunities to try and experience new ways/things. Among them, my favourite had to be going to a refugee church--Celebration Fellowship.

Our group arrived at church a few minutes late and took some seats in the back of the school auditorium, where the church meets. Immediatly we were welcomed and became active participants of the service. Sitting next to me was a Thai man and his family. As I would sing in English, he would sing his praises in Thai. In front of me were some Bhutanese, and behind me were some Asian people. I was surrounded, right here in America, by a wealth of different nationalities and each of them were praising God in their heart language, and in their own way.

A Bhutanese man, who was sitting a couple rows in front of me started singing, in his native language, in his chair. He continued to sing, making his way up to the stage area, his three year old son following, where he began to lead the worship in song and praise. After this man and his son had left, another black woman, walked up to the stage to lead songs of praise and worship. A father came up to the stage, playing the guitar, his young daughters singing. No one ever questioned if they were good enough, or if they belonged on the stage, people responded to Christ, without fear of rejection, without wondering if they would be accepted! The praise and worship was amazing, heartfelt, they glorified and exalted God, showing their loyalty and admiration to Jesus Christ!

Our sermon was preached in three different languages--thus we received three sermons over one text. I loved worshiping with people in Thai, Bhutanese, Swahili, English, and other various languages!