Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Both-And Reality of Mestizaje

I feel both Mexican and North American! That is my reality. Tacos. Venti latte. Menudo. ESPN. Huaraches. Puma (Italian).

The reality, my life is a clash of multiple influences and I refuse to choose just one expression to identify, express, identify, who I am. Soy pocho. Soy rico. Soy pobre. I am rich and poor at the same time! I am educated and illiterate at the same time! I am legalistic and grace motivated at the same time. I am secure and insecure at the same time.

Soy Latino ( Mexican by heritage. Infulenced by my Puerto Rican & Dominican friends, brothers and sister) I am North American (Influenced by Italian, Greek, German, Dutch, Scananavian, and other cultures that still live on in the live of brothers and sister I know).

In a sense, I'm Cuban and Columbian. I'm idigenous. I am part Native American. I am African-American...At least all of these realities are a part of me in a way that feels like I belong.

And yet, at the same time, I don't belong.

Finally, I know I am saved through Christ, and yet I am still being saved, as the Holy Spirit continues to shape my life and character into the likeness of Jesus.

My world is a both - and reality, and I would not have it any other way.

Jewish - Mexican Mestizaje

One of the perks of being at the UYWI national event at Azusa this week is getting to hang out with amazing urban pioneers like John Perkins and Ray Bakke.

At breakfast this morning, I was talking to Dr. Bakke and he expressed his excitement that I was entering the Bakke Graduate University D. Min program beginning next month. He then began to share some of this church history discoveries in Mexico and Latin America.

An amazing revelation was the Jewish migration with Cortez the Spaniard, to Mexico. To complicate the Spanish/indigenous mestizaje of Mexico, is the Jewish/Spanish reality. Ray mentioned that he learned from Samuel Escobar that Mexican last names ending in 'es', 'ez' and 'za' were all names taken to identify their Jewish heritage.

Could it be that as mestizos, we need to discover their Jewish roots?