Diary Of A Christian

Everyday comings and goings of a person who has been touched by the Grace of God.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Can't we all just get along???

Today I was telling one of my "Christian" buddies that I was in email contact with an individual who converted from Islam to Christianity.
There really was no point to the conversation except to sway the conversation from her complaining about something in her life to something else.
Well the conversation change alright.
She had to point out that she does not understand why I even talk to those people.
The those people who she is talking about are Muslims.
A few minutes after her statement, we ran into one of my Muslim friends. He greeted me with a Happy Easter Cassandra.
I have quite a few friends who are Muslims and that has always been the problem between she and I.
She could not understand why he would dare "Wish me a happy Easter".
Things really heated up after September 11th. She told me that I had to give up all of my Muslim friends because they hate Christians or we could not be friends. I think we did not speak for about 3 months after that statement.
I thought we had gotten over this because I explained to her that I did not think the lesson that Jesus had given us to love one another had any exceptions to it.
For just a moment I thought to try to sway the conversation back to what she was complaining about ...but this conversation train had already left the station.
I was reminded of the Christians that are under attack in the middle east. I was reminded of Christian organizations being asked to leave the Tsunami disaster areas, I was reminded of it all.
This from someone who just left Easter services in church. And who also made the statement--I can not believe the Jews killed Jesus.

Well I could have just left the conversation alone but I couldn't.
First of all, there is a level of respect between my Muslim friends and I. Do we get into argument about faith--YES. All of the time. And for as much as they are convicted about their faith, I am convicted about my faith. But we remain friends. We remain kind to each other. I was actually honored that he remembered that today was Easter for the Christian faith. It was a kind gesture for a Muslim to wish me a Happy Easter.
I had to explain to her that my Muslim friends are watching me. They watched me after September 11th. They watch me every time there is a death of one of our military troops. They watch me everytime something bad happens between Christians and Muslims. They watch me to see if I REALLY believe in the message our Savior gave us--To love one another.
I had to also remind her that for as many things that separate us by faith, we have a common ground.

Jerusalem.

Here is an article that I read from the St. Anthony Messenger (by Msgr. Joseph Chaplan) that I asked her to consider.

Holy Places
Once in a lifetime, if financially and physically able, every Muslim is expected to make a pilgrimage to Mecca and participate in the five-day celebration surrounding that event. Among other things, Muslims recall their belief that the Angel Gabriel in 610 A.D. spoke here to Muhammad, the prophet of Islam.
But they revere other sacred places, especially Jerusalem. They believe that the Prophet himself ascended into heaven from the rock over which the Dome of the Rock, the earliest Islamic monument, now stands.
The site is also sacred to Jews, who recall its connection with the Temple. Jewish persons, of course, consider themselves the Chosen People and that God has designated today's Palestine as their home. Jerusalem is also sacred to them, as are many other locations in the Holy Land. Their liturgy suggests three pilgrimage festivals: Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot.
Christians believe that Jesus came and dwelt on this earth, for the most part in that area termed the Holy Land. Over the years, millions of Christians have come to this sacred place and are eager to visit locations where Jesus was conceived, born, grew up, taught, ate his Last Supper, sweated blood in Gethsemane, died, was buried, rose and ascended into heaven.
Disputes over these places, especially in the Holy Land, have probably caused the sharpest divisions and hateful feelings—as well as the most violent actions—among Christians, Jews and Muslims. Perhaps an appreciation of each group's reverence for the same or neighboring sacred spots could eventually dissolve the hatred and lead to peace.

So my point is that there is a common denominator between all of us... and even if there isn't I still can not forget what my Savior has asked of me ..To love one another

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