October 5, 2012

Santo, Santo!

We adopted a son from Mexico. Well, that’s only partially true. He was born in America to a white mom and Mexican dad and we actually haven’t gone through the court system to adopt him. He was 18 when he came to live with us and currently he is still 18. I know parts of his story and parts of his story I don’t want to know.
He speaks both Spanish and English fluently. I, on the other hand, do not. As I sit next to Mi Hijo, I hear him carry on a conversation with his Dad. I long to understand what they are saying to each another.

Mi Hijo, is the one word he did teach me to speak. It came after much defeat in trying to articulate his name in Spanish. He finally said, “Mom, call me ‘Mi Hijo.’ My Son.” So I have and he calls me Mom.

I’ve had many discussions with God about my lack of communicating with the Spanish speaking world. It would come in handy as I work inside prison walls with juveniles. For many, their native tongue is Spanish and they tend to use this language in my presence. I would like to know what they are saying. Thus far God has not miraculously given me ear nor tongue.

Grumbling about my lack (yet again) I turned on Spanish worship music. I tried to worship without understanding. That’s when the breakthrough happened. I heard the words, “Santo, santo.” being sung. The tune was one I knew from church. In an instant my Anglo world collided with a foreign culture. Santo, santo. Holy, holy. Holy, holy. Santo, santo!

As God parted heaven He spoke to my heart and said, “Daughter, It’s fine to long to communicate with another culture, but don’t forget that what I long for most is for you to communicate with me.” This revelation caused my eyes to leak and my heart to soar.

Currently, my Spanish dictionary consists of just a few words: Mi Hijo and Santo. One is horizontal communication and the other is vertical. Perhaps as I spend more time pursuing the originator of language I shall add more words to my Spanish dictionary. In the meantime, what more do I need?