On Sunday a Reverend from Egypt came to speak to our church. For me, it was a humbling experience.
I am not altogether familiar with terms like “The Brotherhood” or “Secular Muslims”. Apparently, the Brotherhood is a more extreme group. The “Secular” Muslims are more peaceable. (This explanation is clearly lacking, but it’s kind of the gist of it.)
He told a story about how last week two men walked into a wedding being held at a church, killing 7 people and injuring 14. He spoke of a little girl’s white dress becoming blood-red.
And, yet he praised God. There was joy, passion, life and love on his face. It reminded one person in the church that the Bible is being lived out today. The stories we read about in the Bible are happening in places like Egypt.
It reminds me that yes, the Bible is being lived out in places like Egypt, but is it being lived out here in Canada?
I came away feeling pretty ashamed of myself. Not guilty. It was more of a reality check. We do have things pretty easy here. I get ‘attacked’, but it is by words and facial expressions, not physically.
I heard a sermon preached many years ago talking about how we, Canadians, have to be at the end of our rope before we turn to God. We turn to doctors, lawyers, accountants, physiotherapists, counsellors, etc. These are not bad things, but Rev. Atef said they do not go to nations, or the church, or to any earthly organization for help, they go to God!
And, God is moving in Egypt. For the first time, the Government, the Military, the Church (and a fourth group that escapes my memory) are in unity.
There were 84 churches burned. The government issued a decree (like back in Queen Esther’s day) stating that the churches will be rebuilt at the government’s expense. And, I just learned that they had to change a law to make this happen.
An official called up Rev. Atef and asked him about his church. He told him it was old and he wouldn’t mind having it renovated. The official said, “Why don’t you just burn it?” Rev. Atef’s reply was something like, “Jesus didn’t teach me to do that.”
There is also a church or (some churches) that have set up clinics to treat the wounded. They do not ask names. They do not ask if the person is Christian or Muslim. They treat everyone. The Muslims are asking, “Why are you treating us when we’re the ones that hurt you?”
The answer came from a Muslim, “Jesus is sweet”.
He cares for and loves all of us, and we are called to do the same. Our brothers and sisters in Egypt are living Faith.
I think this blog is going to have to be a “To be continued”. There is more to say – and I haven’t even reviewed the sermon notes I took in church! 🙂
If you would like to listen to the sermon, you can go to the following link: http://www.sunnysidechurchottawa.com/ Entitled – Wesleyans in Egypt(You have to scroll down to the bottom, and it is on the left side of Pastor Brent.)