Whatever You do Don’t Touch Him!

My parents and Austin came for a visit last month and we had a wonderful time with them. The majority of the ministry they helped with was marriage conferences.

church-marriage-conferenceI will never forget the day the whole church broke out in laughter when my father grabbed John by the hand during a skit. It turns out, in Teso culture, it is completely inappropriate for a father or mother in-law to make physical contact with their son-in-law. In fact, there are many stories from John’s village of mother-in-laws hiding out behind their houses when their son-in-laws come for a visit to avoid more than verbal greetings. Now, as you can imagine, the first thing my parents did when they stepped off the plane was to embrace John in a huge bear hug. Unpredictably, John was quite fond of the special treatment, so he didn’t warn them about the cultural issue until after it happened in church. I’m telling you, the village didn’t know what to make of them treating him like he was their son instead of their son-in-law! Anyways, the incident made a good opportunity for us to discuss with them how being in the Body of Christ makes all of us brothers and sisters of the same family and that there should be no fear of loving, embracing, or physically showing approval of another member of Christ’s family. It isn’t a sign of disrespect.

1 Responses to Whatever You do Don’t Touch Him!

  1. Rita McWhorter says:

    This is a great story, at least one thing that comes from our country that is positive. I have enjoyed all the stories they have told about their trip. Their hearts are right there with you and always will be.
    Love, MM

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