After climbing small mountain, I went to meet with the families on the hill. I passed by a group of men who are all related in some way to those families. Every week they are standing around talking and always invite me to stay a while. Since the chance of having scheduled meetings was lost due to the time, I accepted the invitation.
These men are all illiterate. They are truly what we call "primary oral learners." I chatted with them about the car trouble I had and about my friend who died last week. Each one told a story of losing a loved one. I decided to tell that same story of the rich man and Lazarus for this group. As I told the story they all payed close attention.
When I finished the story, at once they all smiled and nodded in agreement. Some laughed and all began to talk at the same time. I couldn't follow what they were saying. All were smiling and talking, all at the same time; all listening to the others and talking. Wow. They talked and talked and talked and talked. I've never seen such a response to a story before.
After a while I excused myself and climbed the long staircase to meet with the families. I just went in to each home briefly and told them why I was late. I chatted with each family for a few minutes, prayed and agreed to come back next Thursday. After a half-hour had passed I finished these visits and returned to the street. The men were still talking about the story and telling it again to the other men who had just arrived.
There were some things about the story that they didn't "see" the way I'd hoped, but it obviously touched them. I've made a mistake in not sitting with them for 15 minutes each time I go to the families on the hill. I will tell a story every time I pass by from now on.
10:00 PM and still two visits left. . .