Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Ramadan Mubarak 2009

ramadan09

(image from Islam101/Ramadan)

Greetings and best wishes from AdventureMan and me to all of our Muslim friends, fasting and purifying themselves during the Muslim month of Ramadan. May your fasting and your prayers bless you abundantly, and may the month build your spiritual wholeness in every good way.

Friday, during our church service, our priest asked the congregation if any of us had literature explaining why the Muslim God was not the same as the Christian God. We all looked at him in shock. Not one person raised his or her hands.

Then he smiled, a great big broad grin and said “Good! There is only one God, and our Moslem brothers and sisters worship the same one-God we do.”

His sermon was on one of the “hard teachings” of Jesus, teachings even those closest to him had trouble understanding. That there are not exceptions to the rules, that the rules apply across the board, to us all, to all creatures God created. When the Jews, the chosen ones, rejected Jesus, they had allowed a focus on the laws to take the place of the spirit of the law – that we love God, and that as a part of loving God, we serve him by loving and serving one another, regardless of divisions, of denominations or sects.

May all the blessings of the true spirit of Ramadan be yours, my brothers and sisters.

(Yes, Purg, you ARE my brother. 🙂 )

August 22, 2009 - Posted by | Bureaucracy, Civility, Community, Cross Cultural, ExPat Life, Ramadan, Relationships

15 Comments »

  1. Ramadan kareem to you and your family ,

    What a lovely picture of the Door of Al Kabba باب الكعبة المشرفة you have chosen .

    Comment by Daggero | August 22, 2009 | Reply

    • as salam walekum ramdan mubar ur n ur family

      Comment by $Bittu$ khan | September 3, 2009 | Reply

  2. I wish I’d heard that sermon, if I’m honest I’ll admit that sometimes when I look around I’m not convinced. The world is a complicated place!

    Comment by Sprinkle | August 22, 2009 | Reply

  3. Thank you, Daggero, and thank you for telling me what the photo represented!

    Sprinkle, The world IS a complicated place, it is US who make the world a complicated place, our willfullness, our insistence on straying. If God had not given us free will, we would be mere automatons, but oh, the evils we create with our free will!

    Comment by intlxpatr | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  4. I got goose bumps when I read what’s written on the image you had there.

    You know I was having a conversation about this with a non-Muslim friend of mine and she was saying that some people will not believe that God is the same as Allah and that ‘Allah’ is just another word for God. She mentioned that Spanish speaking people call Jesus ‘hesoos’ so does that mean they are speaking of a different Jesus? It’s ignorance.

    I think you’d have to be really narrow minded not to see that people, most people, worship God and even when you don’t think they are worshipping Him the way He wants you can still make room for the fact that they too are God’s servants.

    Comment by 1001Nights | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  5. You are so right intlxpatr and I agree with you 1001Nights. I merely meant that it would have been interesting to hear the theological perspective.

    I often look at things done “in the name of God”, current and historical, and wonder what God people are believing in, because I find it hard to reconcile with what I believe. I’m talking about Christians just as much as Muslims or anyone else. It does come down to people’s free will and ignorance. I think it’s an interesting subject. That’s all!

    Comment by Sprinkle | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  6. Me too, AlfLaila, the goosebumps. My concern – personal, spiritual – is that I look pretty good on the outside, but that’s not where it is going to matter. When I read The Bible and the Qur’an, they both have a very firm line – it is who we are on the inside that is going to matter. And the books are entirely consistent on the BIG message – love God before everything else, and love your brothers and sisters – and we are all brothers and sisters. LLOOLL – it SOUNDS so easy, doesn’t it?

    It strikes me that is what Ramadan is all about – housecleaning, with the help of God who is all-merciful, all forgiving.

    Sprinkle – Here is the church we attend:

    http://epiphany-qatar.org/

    It is the Anglican church – and Canon Bill Schwartz is the priest who was giving the sermon. He is a very smart guy, and helps us focus on what is important and what is not.

    Comment by intlxpatr | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  7. Oh sorry Sprinkle I wasn’t referring to your comment at all in what I said. I was just directing it at Intlxpatr.

    But regarding what you’re saying, some people do become disillusioned given how many heinous crimes are done by people who claim that they are doing what’s right by God. People can have all kinds of sick agendas and they screw up and sometimes use God as an excuse for their atrocities. The way I see it, like it says on the image Intlxpatr put up, God is the Merciful. In our religion he is the most merciful, and so for me anything that doesn’t match with that statement I feel comes from the ugly side of human nature. That is when I kill random children going to school on a nice day – this cannot possibly be condoned by the Most Merciful. It’s from human nature. Not God’s nature.

    Comment by 1001 Nights | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  8. LLLLOOOLLLL, God bless you abundantly, AlfLaila, my greatest spiritual weakness is on the road.

    Jesus was very unpopular in his own time because he called the leaders of the religion, those who thought they were really getting it all exactly right, something like unclean coffee cups, unclean pots, sparkling on the outside, but needing some work on the inside, where bad stuff was hidden, still clinging to the vessel. I try to work on it all year long, but Lent – which is comparable to Ramadan in our practices – seems to be where I can best focus and work on the road-kill problem. 🙂 Thanks for the great example, and for your humility in sharing. 🙂

    Comment by intlxpatr | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  9. Haha that is funny. Driving is one of the things that brings out the worst in me 🙂

    Comment by Sprinkle | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  10. LLOOLL, you’re doing a lot of driving these days, Sprinkle?

    Comment by intlxpatr | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  11. Nope, that might be making it worse or that might be a good thing 🙂

    Comment by Sprinkle | August 23, 2009 | Reply

  12. […] church services in Doha, she adds: Our priest asked the congregation if any of us had literature explaining why the Muslim God was […]

    Pingback by Global Voices Online » Qatar reflects on spirit, practice of Ramadan | August 29, 2009 | Reply

  13. ramdan mubara dear

    Comment by $Bittu$ khan | September 3, 2009 | Reply

  14. ramadhan adalah bulan yg baik…heheq…

    Comment by nurafizah semop | October 16, 2009 | Reply


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