This weekend on Saturday our church had a Training Day, which they haven’t had since October 2006. This is a day full of equipping classes on various topics. It’s a like a conference in that each time slot has several classes going on, so you have to pick.
For the first class, I went to “Sharing your Faith with Authenticity” led by our Pastor of Believe who talked about sharing our personal story and God’s message of redemption in creative ways, through building relationships and friendships. Christian attended a S.H.A.P.E. class at the same time. We also went to a 3-hour Theology 101 class which I thought would be boring but it wasn’t!
But the best part was the last, a 3 hour class taught by Abraham Sarker, a well known former Muslim who works with the Gospel for Muslims organization, who gave a talk “Understanding My Muslim People”, which is also the title of his book. He brought two other former Muslims, Zuby and Ali, with him and all three of them told their stories, gave an extended presentation on the Muslim faith, and held a Q&A session at the end. It was very moving when about halfway through, all three of them asked the audience to stand in sections while each of them individually asked us to forgive the Muslim people for 9/11. I have never had the experience of someone apologizing and asking for forgiveness on behalf of the Muslim people for that event, although for myself, I never blamed them as a people. The Muslim faith has just as many interpretations and factions as the Christian faith does. Still, it was very kind of them and I think this helps them to heal as well, since they were very hurt by their own people on that day, too. I would highly recommend reading Abraham’s book if you did not hear him speak, because he is very insightful and straightforward.