Sunday, February 11, 2007

Love languages??

Recently I've been hearing about "love languages." Supposedly there are five principal ways that people give and receive love. Other than sex I mean. Words of affirmation, acts of service, physical touch, gifts, quality time. Five of them. Supposedly each of us has a primary one, but I couldn't figure out what mine was, until recently.

A few days ago, I recalled that some of our friends from Richmond were coming to our church to meet with the missions committee, and we were invited too. A "pot luck." Well, I remembered a couple of years ago when one of them said "I might not be able to concentrate if I know curry is waiting for me," so I decided to make some. Not one of those things with a dozen different spices and clarified butter, but an easy one -- chop some vegetables and meat, and dissolve the "curry block" (bad stuff, full of saturated fats, high in salt...) into it. I started with the grass-fed beef yesterday afternoon. Stew meat, it was. You don't stir-fry this stuff; you cook it low and slow. Simmer it for hours you should. So it simmered while we went out watch Jenny sing her solo with the high school choir, drop Sheri off at her babysitting job, and eat dinner with friends.

This morning I added the onions, carrots, and potatoes. All that stuff was simmering when Carol and Sheri got up. I made pancakes (Jenny was already gone to church to prepare for the 8am service). Four with chocolate chips, the rest with fresh blueberries.

As I made the pancakes, I remembered Fred Rogers (of Mr. Rogers's Neighborhood) and his song about there being many ways to say "I love you." I wonder if the "love languages" people got the idea from old Mr. Rogers. Sheri purred when eating the chocolate chip pancakes. That's the eating way I guess. And I guess I practice the cooking way. Sounds like a Tony Hillerman book, The Cooking Way.

Anyway, I thought about the folks we were going to see at lunch time. One of them has been involved with missions to southeast Asia for something like sixty years. His children and grandchildren want him to slow down and stop doing so much work for missions, but he's not the type to waste his life on on cruises or in sitting around the pool all day.

Another fellow, the only paid employee of the mission organization we're supporting, does the programming for a radio outreach that has brought hundreds (maybe thousands) from this obscure "unreached people group" to the Lord. His voice is known by Christians from his minority group all over Viet Nam, Laos, Thailand. In fact, when he travels to Viet Nam he has to be careful not to talk too much, because officials of the
(anti-christian) government may recognize his voice too. For all the work he does for the mission, they pay him, well, let's just say it's a fraction of what I get at the office for what I do. And this isn't something he just does a couple weeks a year during vacation - he devotes a lot of his time to this stuff.

I really felt honored to be able to serve these guys. I wondered if I shouldn't be doing missions-related work more of the time.

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