Café Life! We just celebrated our one year anniversary of the café opening on April 5th. It is amazing to me how much has changed in one year within the café. Last year at this time we were struggling to make some of the most basic Spanish coffees and now we are able to whip them up with an almost mechanical fluidity. When someone orders something like a "descafinado de maquina con leche doble largo de café con dos azucarillos"(double shot decaf espresso with milk and two sugars) we can almost have it made before they finish ordering. We have also made a ton of new friends from visiting interns, employees, local workers and students. There is always a buzz of life in the café and a sense of community. It is also often full of young people with laptops as they check their e-mail and international students are often heard talking in their native tongue with friends and family around the world over a free internet phone service.
"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect..." 1 Peter 3:15
If God is good why does he allow tsunamis to happen or natural disasters in general? Why would God create a world with pain, and suffering, and things like cancer? The Old Testament is full of so many bizarre laws and stories. How are you supposed to know what is relevant for today? Why did God make the Israelites sacrifice lambs and bulls? That seems pretty weird. Why does it matter if you pray if God already knows everything already anyway? I am a pretty good person so why is it that God and Christians are so concerned with sin?
These are just some of the topics a friend of mine brought up when we were out to coffee the other day. I really appreciated his questions and we had a great discussion. I think these questions are great not just for my friend who is looking for God, but they really remind me of the beautiful God that we serve as I step back and see the big picture of Christianity. It helps me understand my own faith better as I articulate my beliefs and translate them into words and ideas that my friend can understand.
Lori and I would like to ask you to pray for this friend of ours as he is seeking God (and God is seeking him). Also, please pray that God would provide more conversations like this for both us and for you as well. We are his witnesses! If we claim to be a Christian we are called to make disciples no matter where we live in the world and no matter what our occupation.
Lori and I have been working through a ProTools manual in our free time. ProTools is a home recording gadget that I got for Christmas. It has hardware and software that allows you to set up a virtual recording studio in your house. Lori is technologically savvy and has the discipline to go through the manual chapter by chapter (Something that I find amazing about her. I just keep clicking away at the computer until something works or I get frustrated) . I enjoy seeing all of the pretty colors come up on the computer screen when I play my guitar. Well, hopefully in a few months we will have some music to go with my songs.
The girls are doing well and Lori has been keeping a blog about them here.
One major cultural difference that we have noticed living in Spain is the age that people move out of their parents' house. In the States most of my friends were itching to get out of the house by late high school and parents, while loving their children, wanted to see them become independent and responsible adults. In Spain, most young people I meet have no real plans to leave home and don't really think about it until they begin to approach thirty. Some just never move out. To them we are weird. To us they are weird.
Well, for "young" ( 25-34 year olds) Spaniards who want to leave home sooner a big reason that they stay at home is simply because it is hard to find work. Some new options may be available for the adventurous "young" Spaniards in the near future.
I use the internet service Gmail which is powered by Google. They just increased the amount of Space that they give their users to over two Gigs (and counting). The idea is that you never have to delete an e-mail unless you really want to. It is passed out by invitation only, so if you are interested in setting up an account e-mail me and I will invite you (until I run out of invitations). Contact me at my permanent e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org