One way that Jeremy and I have been able to invite Peruvians into our home has been through pizza. Thanks to Jeremy’s mom, we make a pretty good homemade pizza! And we love to share that with others.
A year ago Jeremy and I walked around the district of Hunter looking for a place to rent. As we walked we prayed for God to lead us to a home where we could become part of a community. We prayed for God to give us opportunities to share Him with our neighbors and to form relationships with them. And God led us to the home we have been living in for a year now.
Many people living in Arequipa don’t know their neighbors. Once you get to know someone here, they are super nice, but a lot of times it is tough to break past the “only saying 'buenos dias' on the street” phase of a relationship. However, God put us in a neighborhood that is different from so many here in Arequipa. We have been invited into their homes. They have brought us food. Many came to visit us after Adileen was born. We have been invited to birthday parties. They have taught us to cook different dishes. And of course, we have shared pizza together.
Several weeks ago we decided to try to have a weekly pizza night with neighbors. Each week we invite a different group of neighbors to come into our home and share their Friday night communing with us and with others from the neighborhood. It has been humbling how God has used this to form relationships not only between us and the neighbors who come to eat with us, but also between the Peruvians that come. We try each week to invite more than one family so that they can begin to get to know more neighbors as well.
During our time together we share pizza, but we also, once all the pizzas are cooked (there are usually around 12 pizzas) Jeremy leads a toast. In this toast we thank God for the gift of community and that God has blessed us to have found it with them. We also come up with one question and then have everyone answer it. Our first question was, “What are you thankful for?”
It was a beautiful time of hearing each one of them take time to be thankful and we also shared with them that they have been an answer to our prayers. That we prayed for God to lead us to a neighborhood and neighbors with whom we could have community and He did.
Here's to more pizza, community, and experiencing reconciliation!