¨Surprise me¨ was what I wrote in answer to the question if I had any preference for a roommate. And a surprise I got. I had signed up for a woman conference at Brela, to spend a couple of days together with other woman who serve somewhere in the Balkans. My roommate came in twice before she met me, and I came in twice before I met her. After ten I went to bed and still had no answer to the question:
With whom am I going to share a bed in the coming three nights?
Just before I went to sleep I opened the door of our room and with that a deep, warm voice came from the bed:
Welcome to my mysterious roommate!
My heart beat faster, this is adventure! I loved it. On the bed was this beautiful dark lady, doing her hair and massaging her arms. We talked for quite some hours and fell peacefully asleep. It was good to spend time with other woman who had moved to this part of the world. Woman came from all over the world and moved to Macedonia, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia and a few other places.
If you ask 80 woman what they would think about Brela, you would probably get 80 different answers. So. Iĺl stick to mine: There was a good balance in nurturing body and soul. Spending time together, and having time alone. Time for art, for counseling, for a haircut, for worship, for Biblestudy. A very rich and often much needed break from the normal routine of life, to reflect and take a deep breath.
On the final morning, woman could share what Brela had meant for them, and someone said how it had moved her to see God s widespread fullness approaching to each woman in a different way, reaching out in your specific need. That was well said!
A highlight for me was spending alone time on the shore. Having a good walk in the wild wind and sitting on the rocks, playing the recorder over the sea and experience that deep peace as a good gift. I hoped that I did not disturb the other people walking on the path, while I made the music, but when I finally stood up and climbed from the rocks on to the path, there was a man sitting on a bench, with this big smile on his face. He thanked me for the music. I thanked him for appreciating it.
The small group was also very special. We were together with 7 moms who had brought their families here and left their wider family and churches behind and moved to this part of the world. We had a lot of things in common and it was rich to share experience, joys and burdens. On one of these moments our group leader gave us this Bible verse:
I loved it. It gives this warm feeling of something good and news and clean beautiful feet.
It was a week later that I was roughly reminded of that bibleverse when I was bringing our Roma friends to church. I was late, tired, not feeling well. The rest of the family stayed even home. I did not bother to get someone else for translation and went straight to the village. And there it happened soon enough that I was in need of translation.
I can speak a little Croatian by now. I can follow some conversations, but high pitched screaming, mixed with stress and rapidness of talk is impossible.
While I parked the car, six little boys came straight to the car, an older man also followed, the woman were screaming from the houses. I wanted to give some guidelines for this little journey, like: not more than 8 people, also adults, I drive to church and am no taxi.
But it was too chaotic and I said: Well, come on in! We drove away with the eleven of us. screaming and shouting. I wanted a few other things; Please, sit down, put on your seat-belt, please do not open the window or door, while I drive the car. Please…
And suddenly I got so cross. What kind of job is this? Who puts me on this? I drove on whit this bitterness in my heart and was reminded of that lovely Bibleverse.
How beautiful are the feet and hands of those who bring good news.
My feet and hand did not feel beautiful at that moment. I was upset, lost patience and felt cross. I had been reading from Jesus how He had compassion with the people, healed the sick, took the time to be alone, but also cared and was flexible.
When I came home, I realized how my attitude was in contrast with Jesus way of acting and it made me sad.
Today we went to the prayer meeting. There is always time for sharing, confession, or whatever you want to say. It is so precious to see our Roma friends caring and loving each other. And how they pray for us is moving very deeply. We prayed together and shared how each part of the Body needs care, and some parts need even more care. And that that actually is the call of the Church. (1 Cor 12)
I think it was time to let my feet be washed by the Master again.
And if you want to know what stresses out an ESTJ, you can see that some situations are just not the best…;) so, this for the smile on your face: