Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Glory in the market

We went to the outdoor market today.  I stayed in the car since Santi was sleeping, but even if he wasn´t we would´ve stayed.  The prices are cheaper if Beto goes by himself.  I´m white, so I´m rich and can afford to pay twice as much as everyone else. Hmm...more on that later.

As I was waiting, I was watching a young mother and her two kids in front of me, unbeknownst to them.  She looked to be at least 40 at first glance but the longer I stared at her the more I thought she was probably only in her twenties.  This I judged based first on her kids´ages, second on the statistics of this population, and third, on her eyes.

She was shorter than me and was carrying a small child on her back. He may have even been around 2 years old.  Her clothes were dirty and her hair really matted, her skin dark, like  from hard labor in the sun.

 Her older child looked to be about Santi´s age and height, but his arms were half as big but his stomach more protruded.  Also his clothes were dirty, but he seemed to be a very happy and loved little boy.  The wrap that the younger child was in on his mom´s back was really dirty.

They just struck me as having a really really hard life. They looked like the kind of people that don´t live here in our town, but come down from small villages up in the mountains, and have to take slow busses home with all of their heavy goods after waiting maybe a few hours for the bus to arrive, in the hot sun, or in the rain, on the side of a dirt road with cars passing by blowing up dust.

Then I started thinking and asking myself questions. For example, WOW! I am so thankful to have been born where I was born and have lived the kind of life that I´ve lived. I could´ve easily been born up in these mountains to poor parents or some other third world country.  Why was I NOT born somewhere else? And why is the majority of the world living in such uncomfortable conditions? I could think of a few answers but I don´t wish to explore those here.

They left and then passed by a young girl that I´ve seen many times before. I have heard her story from a friend of mine.  She was abandoned and left homeless on these streets, for unknown reasons, and therefore has been robbed, raped, attacked, etc. numerous times. Therefore she has learned to be aggressive and sometimes very violent.  People are scared of her. She cuts her very short and when I first came across her a few years ago I thought she was a boy.  She sometimes looks very dirty but today she looked like she had just had a shower and put on clean clothes.  I watched her buy one banana and then stroll into the ¨parking lot¨of a business across the street.

Then a few minutes later I heard someone singing slash chanting...I can´t find the slash on this spanish keyboard.  She was kneeling on a piece of cardboard looking up to the sky with eyes open and her fingers stretched out, palms together.  I couldn´t really understand what she said from inside the car, but I think I heard a ¨Maria¨and  ¨virgin¨in there somewhere.  And this went on for about 10 minutes when she started to pray.  then a business man came out and handed her some money.  I think most of the town knows her and her situation and gives her money when she asks because she doesn´t use it on alcohol.  I imagine that becuase of her reputation for violence no one has taken her in and I imagine that´s the same reason for why she´s not in any of the orphanages here.

Beto returned when she was finishing up and I told him, ¨you know, people think she´s crazy, but what would the world be like if we all praised and prayed to God like that, in public or not? If only I had her courage and passion like her.  And I´m sure God hears her and takes care of her even if she doesn´t have a home.
Even though that´s a hard concept to get my head around.  Why did God allow her to be put in that situation in the first place? Man´s free will? Original Sin?

And then my husband, my wise, loving, gentle husband reminded me that not because of her parents, but so God could use her to get the glory, to show His Glory.  I do believe I saw a little bit of His glory there in the market today.

1 comment:

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