27 August 2013

And "normal" life goes on

Sometimes I wonder what happened to my normal life. Or better said, how did my "normal" get to be so strange? The obvious answer: well, I made a couple of choices. In so doing, I did my best to listen to God and listen to my heart. And that resulted in a life in a community in the Red Light District of Amsterdam married to a Catholic who's crazy about singing and ecumenicalism. Oh, and I'm also writing a dissertation (cause I love the Bible). I think that pretty much accounts for most of the odd-ness of my life.

But some days, mostly on the days when I'm writing too many emails or my to-do-list is too long, or I'm biking through the streets with too many bad drivers/bikers/pedestrians, I long for a different kind of normal. The boring kind of normal, I mean. The kind of life where I don't call up the number on the rental truck to complain about it being illegally parked in front of my neighbour's window and preventing her from doing her work as a prostitute.

And yet, that other normal is not my life. And I didn't actually have to call. But this woman is my neighbour, and i believe she ought to be treated with respect, and so I want to help her. And I was thankful to receive her gratitude and to see her smile as I joked about how much he should have been charged for those 20 minutes of parking...

My life is also the joy of having a friend of Matthijs visit from Germany and on Friday spend half the day biking north of Amsterdam and later that day attend an opera with my father-in-law and brother-in-law, to be followed by dinner in the community and their attending chapel with us. And then spend the rest of the weekend with people in the community, getting to share a little bit of their lives for at least awhile, encourage them and also be encouraged by all those who came and helped out.

And in two days, I'll be hanging out in mountains - just a friend and a (long) train ride away. Which is another way for me to say: I am truly thankful for this odd life of mine where normal sometimes asks more of me than I'd like but also gives me more than I could have ever dreamed of.

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