Saturday, September 18, 2010

Music to a Traveler's Ear

I have been blessed to have traveled to two former Soviet block countries (Ukraine -- 5 times, and Belarus). Each trip required landing in either Amsterdam or Vienna after a long night flight over the big pond. Each airport was full of people, but so little I could understand. I know no French, Spanish, German, Hindi or other Asian language or middle-east language. And on the first trip I knew no Russian. The mixture of sound that was unmistakable. 

When I landed in Kiev the sounds were so strange. There was no hint of English anywhere. There was no auditory clues to know what to do or where to go. A certain uncertainty envelopes you and you use all the visual clues you can find, just to find the men's room. 

Then you hear a most welcome sound in the midst of a turbulent room. Someone has just spoken your name in broken English. You hear it through the clutter of voices, and scan with your eyes searching for the origin of this welcome sound. It is the most wonderful sound in 40 hours of traveling. It's truly joy to your ears.
About 9 a.m. on a Sunday it must have sounded much like the modern airports of today. People from more than 17 regions of the Roman world were in town to celebrate this special religious holiday.

The reports of how tornadoes sound could have been similar to what those foreigners heard -- the sound of a powerful wind -- but no wind. Can you see the visitors looking around for a visual clues to match the sound? 

And then they heard the 'music' of their own language, being spoken by Galileans???  Is it different than listening to Cajuns speaking fluent Chinese, Arabic, German, or Bemba (an African tongue)?

Galileans were often racist, socially unstable, and occasionally violent. Galileans hid political activist like Judas of Galilee. Jesus' parents and Jesus himself retreated to Galilee to avoid political fallout. And it was not the kind of place any Messiah / Christ would claim as home. And because there was no local community college with night classes the people were considered ignorant, without class.

Yet it is some of these 'scoundrels' who are speaking a beloved language in a very far away land. They want to listen and investigate what is happening. 

Do you see it? Twelve different languages being spoken by twelve Jewish men to outsiders from distant lands. People moving to get close to the man speaking in their language. 



Neither. It was the promised miracle to introduce God' new way to worship him--HIS church.

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