Meet Matthew

It is winter in Capernaum, and business at the customs house is slow. Gazing across the sea of Galilee, Levi fingers the coins in his collection box. But today, strangely, Levi isn’t thinking about money. Lulled by the cadence of the waves, Levi thinks instead of himself. For weeks he has felt remarkably alone. Because of his work, of course, he has always been separated from the life of the city. No Jew who collects taxes for the Roman imperialists is accepted by his countrymen. Levi is very rich, yet his only friends are social and religious misfits like himself. It’s been years since he attended synagogue. The Law, the Prophets, the Sacred writings—he knows them well. But he is not

Feeling Foreign

Dear friends, For the past decade Dave and I have lived as foreigners in two different Asian countries. In many ways, being a foreigner makes you feel like a child again, trying to figure out an unfamiliar world. Except that you’re 40 years old and locals giggle at you or look at you like, “Why don’t you understand this?” Renting a house, buying a car, grocery shopping, driving, going to the doctor, ordering dinner, filling out paperwork, doing business, following social customs, going to church, developing relationships, communicating on a basic level…. You name it, everything requires a huge learning curve, and we constantly have to rely on many people for help and advice. It’s challengin

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