Supposedly, sometime this month, I’m to give a devotional in one of the girl’s dorms on a Wednesday night. The original date they gave me didn’t work for me, so I asked them to switch it and then I never heard back about the new date. So, we’ll see when/if I actually end up doing it.
I decided I was going to “bite the bullet” and do it in Spanish! My first “real” speaking time in Spanish. I wrote it out in Spanish (with much help of google translate) on my own and then gave it to a good friend who’s bilingual to fix it. When I got it back today, I read it through and was like, “Wow, not too bad.” Then, I compared it to the one I had written originally and hi-lighted all the places I messed up. sigh.
That’s when it hit me. I FINALLY understand the Tower of Babel!
See, the people at the tower built it to showcase their pride. God, in turn, confused their languages and they all scattered. Deep down, I always wondered – if you’re going to attack someone’s pride, why change their language? I understand now. Because to not be able to communicate, to not be able to express yourself, to not be able to make yourself understood – is incredibly humbling.
Just imagine if you were a highly skilled teacher. You have written books, wrote a 200-page thesis, teach multiple classes, and are asked to be the special speaker at every special event in the area. You move to another country. With a new language. All of a sudden, all the skill you had with words means NOTHING. You are no longer asked to help out. You can’t even participate in your own profession. You’re not even on the LIST of people asked to do special events. You are, essentially, worthless. Why? Because the language is different. Can you feel your pride crumbling?
That’s how it is here. I may have been a Sunday School teacher, Bible club leader, teacher trainer, and women’s teacher in the States, but here – I’m nothing. I’m so far down on the list, I’m not even included. Why? Because I don’t have the language.
So, guess what I’ll be doing every evening after I finish teaching in English?!