Saturday, October 27, 2007

Peace (But Not Necessarily Quiet)

Somehow I managed to live 40 years without trying Iranian food, and now I’ve had it twice in one week! On Monday we ate dinner at an Iranian kebab shop that Matt discovered recently. And just now I’ve come back from our neighbors’ housewarming party. Mmmm... My mouth is still in heaven.

And my ears are still ringing. I’m such an old, old fogey that I can’t actually remember the last time I was at a party with a DJ or one where the music was so loud I couldn’t hear a word the person next to me was shouting. It’s fortunate in it’s own way, though, because the decibel level camouflaged the outrageously happy food noises I was making with each bite of the chicken, rice, lentil and lamb dishes.

One young Iranian woman I met asked me what I thought about the current political situation between the US and Iran. It’s a fairly common question in my experience as an American living overseas, although the country changes according to the nationality of whomever I'm talking to at the time. My answer is always the same: The world’s gone mad. It’s really sad. We desperately need God's peace.

Interestingly enough, I had taken a peace lily to the party along with a note wishing the new neighbors blessing, joy and peace in their new home. In the card I included the well-known verses from Numbers, below.

The party is still going on across the street, and I’m on my way to bed. My thoughts tonight are of yummy food, the joys of cross-cultural friendships and a deep longing for God’s peace on earth, among all people everywhere.

* * * * * * *
May the Lord bless you and protect you.
May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you.
May the Lord show you His favor and give you His peace.
(Numbers 6:24-26 NLT)

The angel said, "Don't be afraid. I'm here to announce a great and joyful event that is meant for everybody, worldwide." ...Peace to all men and women on earth... (Luke 2:10, 14 The Message)

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given... And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6 NIV)

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