Saturday, May 23, 2009

What would you do?

I go on a walk to explore more of my neighborhood.
I am greeted by the largest pig I have seen here, wallowing in a tire behind our house.
As if knowing this was show-off-the-large-animals day, a flock of huge turkey-like birds fill the street. As I walk by, they fluff up their feathers and try to follow me.
Two dogs try to attack me, but they are all bark.
I stumble on a cow’s jawbone in the street. Teeth included, it is as big as my foot. It would not be the last one I see here.
I discover the perfect view of the sunset over the majestic green hills.
As I walk, I find myself walking along the longest wall I have seen in this area. I turn with it, and discover it is a cemetery. A man sits outside the gate.
“Como estas?”
“Buenas tardes.”
“Quiero charlar contigo.” (I want to chat with you.) I keep walking.
“Porque no quieres charlar conmigo?” (Why don’t you want to chat with me?) I keep walking. This question stabs my heart.
Why don’t I want to talk with him? Because his voice sounds slurred? Because I have trouble understanding his simple greeting? Because I always heard you shouldn’t talk to strangers, especially those that might be drunk sitting at cemeteries (ok, that last part wasn’t in the warning).
What should I do? Turn around, make up some excuse, and talk to him? Better yet, turn back, tell him the truth, and actually talk to him?
I keep walking, like a dog with its head down after breaking something.

I go to church tonight. The sermon is about treating all people like God’s loved children, even the ones (no joke) that are drunk or a little off. We all deserve to be condemned, but God chose to love us anyway, and we are called to love others the same way. No matter what.

I expect better things of myself next time.

1 comment:

Melanie said...

I know this feeling. Remember this is just a lesson in new kinds of love, not just an admonishment on your faults. We are culturally raised to act and think in certain ways. It reminds me of the verse that talks of putting off childish things. At some point in our lives, we become old enough to talk to strangers. It's weird.