Monday, March 21, 2011

A Good Dose of 'Forced Flexibility'

Today we had a team meeting scheduled but because it's a public holiday we decided to have a braai instead (like good South Africans). We fit our meeting in around the braai, over cups of coffee, and while washing the dishes.

But before the meeting even started - before our colleagues even arrived - some children were dropped off at our house at 09h30 with the explanation, "We'll be back at 17h00 to fetch them."

What was so odd about this is that these are Muslim children who aren't allowed at our house because of religious reasons (I think we're actually considered 'unclean' by Muslim standards). The funny thing is, my first thought was, "What kind of meat did I buy for the braai? I hope it's not pork!" Fortunately I had bought chicken, we had enough for two extra people, and our colleagues were very gracious and didn't mind that there were five children running all over the house.

In the end, it worked out fine. I think I'm finally learning to go with the flow and be flexible, and if I'm honest, I have to concede that being flexible goes a long way toward building relationships. And if I'm *really* being honest with myself, isn't loving your neighbour the whole point?

1 comment:

Dianne said...

It's not so much that you are considered "unclean" by Muslim a strict Muslim family, children are segregated by gender and women/female children are not allowed to be in the presence of males who are not part of the family (males whom they could not marry because of close blood ties are "mahram"/permissible). But yeah, Muslims generally don't mix with outsiders unless they are "making dawa" or evangelizing for Islam. What a HUGE thing for the children to be left with you...Jesus is awesome. :)