I wish I had written this when it happened and not a year later. Though I started writing this post in August 2014, (all I wrote was the title and “we woke up early on”) I’m finishing it in October 2015.
I remember having trouble finding the church building in Belgium, and stressing about it because we were running late. When we got off the subway we were a little disoriented about what direction to head. Though I plan the itineraries and organize the information, Lance is the one who translates it and puts it in to practice. When we’re actually in motion, he’s in charge because I’m pretty useless at knowing where to go, even if it’s just retracing our steps. I say this to preface how stressed Lance felt as he led me down several wrong streets, and how even more stressed (read: annoyed) he was when I made suggestions about where we should go.
I remember we were walking on a large street that was split with a tiny park or walkway between it. He went down the street and I went up it, I think looking for a street number or hoping for some sign. Sometimes in our travels we’ve been lucky enough to spot what we assume are members (or if we’re lucky, missionaries) heading to church and we follow them. Neither of us were having much luck and if I remember right we were already about 10 minutes late.
I don’t know how to describe it other than I started to hear a hymn. It wasn’t as if I was humming it in my mind, but as if it was placed into my mind. Like I was hearing it, but it wasn’t out loud. I started walking down a side street and as I did I felt like the music was getting louder and more clear — like I was getting closer to the source. By this time Lance and I had met up again (he had found the right street because of the name, me because I was following the music). I didn’t tell him what was happening but instead we walked in silence into the little building with the Church’s plaque on it. As we walked into the little chapel the congregation was singing the exact song that was playing out in my mind — but in their native tongue. Tears slid down my cheeks as I started to mouth the words in English. It was a poignant and powerful experience I won’t forget.