Redeem the time . . . Ephesians 5:16
The nature of migrant workers is that they are migrant. We often notice an ebb and flow to our work here. Sometimes there seems to be a great interest in what we have to share and many visitors in our homes; other times it seems as if everyone is busy working or out of the country.
My brief acquaintance with Dilya reminded me that we must make the most of every opportunity. She actually approached me at a food court where she was working. This was unusual. I was eating a meal with family and friends, and she started up a conversation. Every so often she’d walk away to pick up trays or wipe down a table, and then she’d return and share more about her life. In 15-20 minutes I learned more about her life than I know about some of my closer Central Asian friends.
Right before I left, I found a Mary Magdalene film to give her. I told her it was in Uzbek, and she excitedly took it. She told me to make sure I came back to visit here and so I asked her schedule. “I’m here every day from 12-10,” she said. Again, she asked me to come back.
I was leaving soon for a 1-month trip to America, so the very next week I went to see her. I wanted to see how she liked the film. I wanted to ask more about how she was doing, but she was gone. I waited around the food court for a while, grabbing some lunch, and hoping to see her pop around the corner. She never appeared.
Maybe she was sick that day. Maybe she found a better job. I don’t know, but I do know I need to “redeem the time.” We never know here when our first meeting with someone may be the only chance to leave them with the message of truth.