I watered some plants today. Not just any plants. They are plants that belong to my spanish friend who lives about a half mile from me. She has gone to visit her mother who lives in northern Spain and will be there for about a month. I will go every couple of days and water them for her. About half of them are cacti, so I am PRETTY sure they can make it with a couple of days in between.
But that's not the point of this blog entry. It's just to say that as I was watering her plants I started thinking about how she has lived in this town for about 30 years. And how I, a foreigner, am watering her plants. Granted, she has another friend who stops by from time to time to check on things, but not someone coming over every couple of days to water her plants. I am happy to do it. I have the time. This is what I'm here for, etc, etc.
But I guess I'm just happy that she chose me. Because that means she kind of trusts me. Which is a big deal here in Spain.
You see, my friend is an atheist. She believes in some type of salvation through nature and all of that airy stuff. (I almost want to kill her plants and ask her where Mother Nature was when it counted--- I'm KIDDING. Everybody calm down.) I have shared stories from the Bible with her - my teammate Gaby has done the same. She said we are always welcome to share stories. Of course, she listens to the stories and then voices her disagreement. She can be prickly. But one thing is always clear -- she is angry at a god that she does not know. Because if she knew I AM, she would not be able to say certain things about Him that she has said. If she knew our God the Creator, her love of plants and nature would go to a deeper level.
So I pray for her as I water her plants. Especially those cacti.
Because even a cactus needs water.
Isaiah 61:11 "For as the soil makes the sprout come up and a garden causes seeds to grow, so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations."
During my time in the States I made some decisions about the way I want to spend my time here in Spain. The first year I was here my schedule revolved around my studies and then I was not as organized as I would have liked to have been in the off-hours.
So one of the things I decided I wanted to do was to read more. I have always enjoyed reading but I have to be honest: sometimes I get tired of it. But I also realized WHY I get tired of it. I get tired of reading Christiany stuff. It's true. I think it's because it's overwhelming to me. Reading everybody's opinions about stuff. Not always knowing if I should be in agreement or not. Or feeling guilty because reading some of that stuff makes me feel like I'll never have my act together. But I'm over that now. :)
But one of my personal goals this year was to read a book each month, christian or non-christian. Mostly for my own sanity and to be able to fill my extra time with something valuable. And here are some of my favorites so far this year.
This is my mom's fault. She read the book and then wouldn't stop talking about it. ;) So I read it while I was recovering from being in the hospital. And it was good. REALLY good.
It is a non-fiction history book. Fascinating history mixed with eye-opening realities of the settlers and indians. For those of you who live in the Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky area -- this is highly recommended.
East of Eden
I have to be honest with this one. My friend suggested it to me and so I quickly downloaded a free version and read it within two days. It was kind of choppy writing, I thought. So I decided to look up some history about the book and read somewhere that it was a 600 page novel. What? Mine was only 100 pages. Hence the free version and choppy writing. It was some sort of summary. At any rate, it was a GREAT summary. ;) I'm sure the full version is even better. Someday I'll get to it. But since I already know how it ends I am not as enthusiastic to read it.
The Insanity of God
This book has changed me. I have read books before that make me teary, that make me think, that convict me. But I have never read a book that I have had to put down so that I could cry. I mean really cry. This true story has changed the way I pray. It has brought the Bible to life. This book is a must for any believer.
Read it and weep.