Lost in Translation

What do you get when you cross 2 Americans, 2 Nepali, and a Walmart? You get a language barrier!

Ok, maybe not the best joke, haha! But that's exactly what happened last night. It was a typical night in Birchcroft as we prepared to get ready for Bible Study. Travis was practicing for worship with a few youth girls who play the violin and cello, and Caitlin (who Travis and I live with) and I were trying to round up the girls in the neighborhood. Corbin (one of the missionaries living in Birchcroft) asked if Caitlin and I would be so kind as to take two women who needed a ride up to Walmart. With still 30 minutes until Bible Study started we hopped in the car with these ladies who hardly speak English and headed the mile or so up the road to the store.

"We'll meet you right here at the cash registers when you are done, ok?"

The ladies shook their heads yes and walked off on a mission to retrieve whatever they were after. They didn't grab a cart so we knew they wouldn't be too long. Caitlin and I moved through the grocery section (or lack there of) wondering what was for dinner later that night. After agreeing to the easy but hearty beans, rice, and corn combo we headed toward the check out in the hopes of meeting our fellow Walmart comrades. After about 20 minutes of browsing the magazines in the check out aisles Caitlin and I began to wonder where these ladies were. Did they get lost? What exactly were they coming here for? Did they escape unnoticed somehow? After three circles around the mega store and another 30 minutes we began to worry and wonder what we should do. We even had a Walmart employee helping us. We decided that Caitlin would stay and monitor the store while I drove toward Birchcroft seeing if I could spot these two ladies heading back to their apartment. So many thoughts were reeling through my mind as I drove that long mile, How do you lose two women? What is Corbin going to think? Is he going to wonder if I'm fit for this ministry? Please, Lord, protect these two women! I finally reached the apartment complex as Bible Study was letting out, and as usual the kids were running the streets kicking a soccer ball or just hanging out. I spotted Travis and waved him over to the car. After I told Travis what happened he grabbed Corbin and I relayed the story once more. I let out a sigh of relief when Corbin started laughing. He went to check the ladies apartment and I followed behind in the car. Sure enough there the ladies were, safe and sound at home! Luckily Corbin had a kid with him who spoke the same language the ladies do. One of the ladies told Corbin that they must have misunderstood us and walked home. I knew there were no hard feelings when I saw a huge smile come across that lady's face. She thanked me and we both apologized for the misunderstanding.

After picking up Caitlin from Walmart I finally was able to breathe and just laugh at the situation, a situation I was afraid was going to turn out bad. Language barriers are tough but I know that Christ can break those down; I saw it in the smile of those ladies who after they thought we left them still graciously thanked me.

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