Last week I was in Greece and for the first time visited Athens. Pretty big city...actually too big for me...but very nice also. And it was great driving by the coast from Thessaloniki down to Athens. They say it is something like 5 million people living there. And very international also.
Well, one of the things I really liked is visiting the Acropolis and the Areopagus where St. Paul preached to the Athenians. This is what the bible says in Acts of the apostles 17 (the Message)
"The longer Paul waited in Athens for Silas and Timothy, the angrier he got-all this idols! The city was a junkyard of idols. He discussed it with the Jews and other likeminded people at their meeting place. And every day he went out on the streets and talked with anyone who happened along. He got to know some of the Epicurean and Stoic intellectuals pretty well through these conversations. Some of them dismissed him with sarcasm: "What an airhead!" But others, listening to him go on about Jesus and the ressurection, were intrigued: "That's a new slant on the gods. Tell us more."
"These people got together and asked him to make a public presentation over at the Areopagus, where things were a little quiter...So Paul took his stand in the open space at the Areopagus and laid it out for them..."
"At the phrase "raising him from the dead," the listeners split: Some laughed at him and walked off making jokes...but there were still others, it turned out, who were convinced then and there, and stuck with Paul."
It's pretty much the same today. Some laugh and mock and some believe and are saved. For those who believe IT'S WORTH IT!
"I am not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation for those who believe." (Saint Paul)
Monday, October 17, 2005
A friend of mine from Norway gave me a CD of a norwegian band called GAATE (really it is GATE with small O above the A). Fantastic! The best thing I have heard for some time now. According to me a mixture of modern rock with new metal and norwegian folk. Great! The girl sings amazing. Would really like to see them play in Skopje. www.gaate.no
Friday, October 14, 2005
We are driving so slow if you can call that driving. Moving with the jeep on this mountain road if you can call it a road. It is so lovely here, forest, green meadows...we stop and pick apples from the trees by the road. It is the eastern part of the country and we left the near by village to go and meet my wifes grandfather who lives in a small house in the mountain. You can get there only with a jeep and in winter when the snow falls you just can not get there. He lives alone in a primitive house, he is 87 years old and has not seen my wife at least for few years. I was really excited and really longed to meet him and It was really an emotional meeting. We found him in the house with earthen floor and a stove...very old. He was really glad that we came...and immediately brought what he has, fresh plums, pears...and some honey. He goes, "Take the spoon and eat! You are not eating!" I liked when he shared some old sayings and what I would call peoples wisdom and we had a great laugh. During the world war 2 he has been arrested by the germans and has spent 6 months in prison in Vienna. Basically has been through many things. We spent maybe an hour with him and it was time to go. He loaded our car with what he had, a loads of apples, pears, plums...macedonians, especially the ones that live in the country, they love to give. When we said good bye our hearts broke. Why? I dont know. Maybe because we might never see him again. Maybe because we felt sorry for him. Maybe because recently because of high blood pressure he faints...and he is alone there. We go back to our own world full of things, voices, duties, programmes, tv, computers, clothes, cars, shops...and he stays there in his simple world. Alone. Waking up alone, going to bed alone. But perphaps we will never understand that he does not need our things and voices. We see things from another angle. He has something that we dont. You dont have to agree with me but your soul does not get so dirty in places like that...and you have less voices in your head. After we came back, every evening my wife asks me, "Do you think that grandpa sleeps now?" I think so...Sleep well grandpa. I hope one day you wake up in the light.