Friday, September 17, 2010


“God so loved the world…..” John 3:16a - the biggest surprise of all!

An Arab man was walking down the sidewalk in Montreal where he saw an injured bird. He was surprised seeing a person in the crowd stop and move the bird to a safe spot and make it comfortable.

We hadn’t been in touch with Khalid and Shazia for a number of years. My husband decided to give the family a call giving me an opportunity to talk with Shazia. Suddenly she unloaded a crisis unfolding in her personal life. When I asked if I could pray for her over the phone she said, I’ll put my hand over my heart and listen while you pray.” That was a surprise response for me. Dear Shazia!

Aisha just gave birth to a son. Whom did she call on for help? Nancy, a Christian mom of four, who offered to care for Aisha’s four other children while she was in the hospital. Whew – 8 kids?! God bless Nancy. The tired Muslim mom called us from the hospital. We had the honor of being the first to see her little baby boy and took them home. “Would you like me to pray a blessing over your baby, Ahmed and Aisha?” I asked. It was amazing that the first prayer over that one day old baby was given in Jesus’ name – even before the naming ceremony, a week later. I was surprised they allowed it.

I was visiting a Muslim refugee woman who spoke minimal English. She got some henna and talked’ through the designs she drew on my hands. It was a surprise to see so many hearts which didn’t fade for about two weeks. When there were no verbal words to say, her pictures communicated.

While the international uproar was going on over Pastor Jones’s threat to burn the Qur’an a touching email came from a woman in Saudi Arabia. That was a surprise. I expected closed doors due to the uproar. When her family lived here I was surprised two times with her little boy ringing our doorbell and sweetly giving me two rocks that he had colored. He couldn’t express his feelings in English at that point. I treasure those rocks.

My hijabi friend was deeply touched attending prenatal classes for newcomers. It was the teachers’ smiles which impacted her.

I looked in amazement at the 4 empty dishes I needed to return to Muslim ladies who lovingly gave me food to take home. Love begets love. Surprise?

Some show love through henna drawings, while others color rocks, give food, smile, care for a helpless bird, say a prayer or take care of children. Love is an universal language. Loving Muslims brings many wonderful surprises to me – and maybe to them, too. I have discovered that when Muslims feel loved I witness a people who can be affectionate and responsive. It’s hard to believe there was a time when I was afraid of Muslims.

Dear heavenly Father, Your love for the world never fails to surprise me. I bless you! In Jesus’ name, Amen.