2: A Slice of Americana and a Beautiful Cacophony: Reciprocal Gifts

In Thailand, there’s a café that sells pie nestled beside a river. We’re talking classic American pie: pumpkin, coconut cream, lemon meringue, even key lime. And it turns out that the kids we’re visiting in the border town, LOVE it. It’s not only delicious and a special treat, it’s a quintessentially American flavor and we thought it would be lovely to bring a slice of our lives to them. So, we bought ten pies. It was no small feat because we had to schlep them across the border with all of our luggage, but it was worth it because we had the opportunity to show them they’re special and loved.

     While we were there, we worshipped, ate together and prayed before breaking out into fun play time. Their prayer was a reciprocal gift to us because they taught us a different way to pray. They don’t pray in the orderly, one-person-at-a-time method. Culturally, they are more about the group than the individual, and it’s reflected in their prayer, which is a wonderful sound to hear. They pray all at once, with voices raised together in a melodious call out to Jesus. 

     It makes me think about what it must be like for God to hear the praise and petition of humanity, all calling out at once to worship and pray, to give devotions, appeal for help, to ask for healing, patience, kindness, to beg for forgiveness. It must be a beautiful cacophony for the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit to receive. It’s amazing to realize that they hear each of our devotions and pleas not only as the body of the church but as individuals who are reaching out to be in communion.

     Our group is so fortunate to be invited into prayer with our friends. It gives us a sense of being in a deep, close relationship with them. It’s amazing to join into the group, freely praying out loud together. It gives us a taste of the pleasing sound being sent to heaven in all languages across the world.