Today I waited for a friend before going to the bazaar.
Typical American, I showed up early. I aimed for 5 minutes before our scheduled time and it was an accidental 10.
Typical Middle Eastern, she was late. Only by 10 minutes, not a big deal.
For twenty minutes, I watched as cars, buses, and taxis made their way through one of the busiest intersections of our city.
About ten minutes into my observations, a taxi driver was having some car trouble. After trying his best to restart his little tan Toyota, he realized he needed to push it out of the intersection. The moment he got out and laid hands on his trunk, three other men -from different corners of the street- quickly joined him.
It was a beautiful picture of the community here.
I’m sure in America, that might happen. At least, I’m hopeful it would… But I’ve seen plenty of people back home pass by others in need, busy to head off to the next thing… the next task.
That person has also been me.
Another culture moment today was when my friend and I were catching up about our day. I told her that my housemate wasn’t home today and that I had spent my time cleaning and doing laundry.
“Why didn’t you call me to help you!” she accused. Completely serious too.
She is sweet, with the biggest heart. Always giving. Wanting to share her time, home, and resources with me.
I truly love communal cultures. They take the time to see one another and look for opportunities to “be there” for each other. This culture is teaching me to see. Not only to see people, but also their needs. Sometimes it might be something as simple as cleaning a home with a friend and other times helping push a car… Regardless. We are the hands and feet. I think our Father desires for us to use them for good and for His glory.