Dios te bendiga … mi amiga.

I got to use my Spanish today for more than telling a waiter my room number.  I had a manicure and pedicure this morning at the spa; the woman who was waiting on me didn’t speak English.  I said a few greeting to her in Spanish and she asked if I spoke … my typical answer, un pocito. She went on and started asking some basic questions, where are you from? How many children do you have?  Were you born in Texas?  Which do you like better, Texas or New York?  Is it pretty?  When she started working on my hands, she asked what I did … for work?  What do you do?  Soy una pastora.  She asked a few times … una pastora?  Sí.   At first it was hard for her to understand that a woman could be a pastor.  Then she asked if I believed in Christ.  When I said yes, she went on to tell me her story.  She didn’t believe in God or Christ.  Her father died of cancer a year ago; her husband died a month ago.  She cannot believe in a God who does this.  What is life after death?  What does it mean?  She was married in the Catholic Church, but they have no answers for her now.

I had nothing to say … let alone in Spanish.  But it was amazing to me, how I was able to understand what she was saying.  It must have been Spirit-led.  She spoke distinctly and intensely, and I understood just about every word.  Earlier when she asked if Texas had a lot of trees, I had to ask her to repeat what she said three or four times before I got it.  This time I understood everything I was meant to understand.  Lo siento, I’m sorry.  I told her I believed one day she would have hope again.  I didn’t have much to say … but I don’t think that’s what was important.   

I just wanted to practice my Spanish.  But communicating across cultures … it’s not just talking or playing games.  It’s real … in this case it was woman to woman, believer to griever, pastor to pedicurist.  I feel blessed; I pray she will one day feel blessed, too.