Last night I had the honor of attending an informal men's meeting. Actually, I'm not exactly sure what they called it, but it was held across the street, so I had to check it out.
It was several firsts for me, like first men's group I've attended (but I've been to women's Bible study as an adult and Girl Scouts with my sister as a boy). But it was the first time I was the only gringo in attendance. My Spanish is pretty good, if I'm reading it. Not as good listening and worse speaking, but I'm making progress.
After prayer and some discussion of things I didn't grasp fully (I think there was talk of helping someone in need - standard things true men discuss), we watched Hacksaw Ridge.
If you haven't seen the film, you should. Luckily, I had seen it before and knew the plot. Now I've seen it in two languages.
What I didn't expect was the effect it had on me. First, I thought of all of my classmates who served in the armed forces - namely Kraig Johnson, who I think of quite often because he's awesome. Jeremy Rousseau has been posting photos on Facebook of a motorcycle tour he's on with other veterans so he's in the back of my mind as well.
Second was a combination of being homesick and weird patriotism. The idea that I do not live in my country nor have plans to return for good any time soon doesn't hit me often, but when it does it hits hard. I love my country, and some would qualify that feeling. I will keep the sentiment simple. I love my country. Sometimes that strikes me when I least expect it (like during the winter Olympics, yes it was weird nearly weeping when a pair of cross country skiers featured in a stupid commercial won gold.
It has struck me hard that sometimes God puts you where you need to be but you don't always like it. I do love it here, but I do miss home. Just like sometimes I'm cranky. I just don't feel like that all the time.
What the main character kept saying near the end (I think, remember it was in Spanish) was "please Lord, help me get one more, help me save one more." That's how I will approach our mission here. Jesus will be the savior. Maybe He can use me.
I do like the Spanish title more than the American: Until the Last One.