Norm’s Notes                                                          October 24, 2019

An Only God story, a true story that unfolded at FMC yesterday.
 
A Muslim lady from Germany traveling on US 20 from Ohio back to her job at Loyola University in Chicago had a feeling come over her that she needed a priest to bless her because she has had too many bad things happening in her life. While going down the road, she searched Google for churches nearby and several churches came up. She tried calling some but FMC was the first one to answer the phone. FMC secretary Cindy took the call and passed it on to me. On the phone the lady explained to me her bad feelings and told me she is a Muslim but still wanted me to pray with her. I asked if she knew how to get to the church and she said Google would direct her. She pulled into the parking lot about five minutes later. I met her at the front door. Knowing she is Muslim, I gently asked, “Are you comfortable going into the sanctuary to pray?” She quickly responded, “Oh, sure.” As we walked to the sanctuary I said a quick silent prayer “God, guide this conversation.” 
 
I thought to myself, she is not an ordinary Muslim lady – no head scarf, wearing blue jeans, make up on her face. I turned on the lights and we sat on the front row in the sanctuary. I started to ask questions to really understand her story before I prayed for her. She was raised in Germany, went to Catholic high school there. At the school, the catholic students had one set of religion classes and the evangelicals had another set. Evangelicals was the term she used. I gently asked “You went to a Catholic school, understand what evangelicals believe, yet you are Muslim. Why?” She was raised Muslim and her parents are Muslim. I asked, “Who was Jesus Christ?” She said he was a good teacher, like Mohammed. “Do you believe Jesus died for our sins?” Yes. “If I use the phrase, know Jesus Christ as your Savior, do you know what I mean?” Yes. “Have you ever asked Him to forgive you of your sins?” Yes. I gently asked her again, “Why do you say you are a Muslim?” Her answer – “I embrace all religions.”
 
She is very comfortable going to a Muslim mosque, Catholic mass, or an evangelical church. She is now divorced but was married to a Catholic man and they celebrated all the Christian holidays. Religion was never a problem in their marriage. I asked her if she was comfortable if I prayed in Jesus’ name. Oh sure, she said. My prayer was that God would protect her, that she would have safe travels, that all the things happening in her life would somehow lead her to know Jesus Christ better. I closed with “In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, I pray, amen.” She was emotional after the prayer.
 
She said she has a Bible. I encouraged her to read it. Then I asked her, “Why do you think our paths crossed today for this brief moment?” She was not sure. At this moment I am not sure either but I just feel I was a very small part in a big, big plan for about 25 minutes. As we left the sanctuary I picked up the little pamphlet we have at the altar – “How to have Peace with God.” We went to the literature rack where I picked up the pamphlet about the differences between Islam and Christianity. I gave her an invitation to Bethlehem Marketplace and my business card and shook her hand as she left. Please say a prayer for Ebru (I had her spell her name for me).
 
That’s one of the people God brought across my life this week. Who has He brought to you?
 
 
____________________
 
See you Sunday!
 
Norm
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