What an American Christian Learned Living in a Muslim Country Part 3: God is.
God is a part of the air we breathed in Morocco. Yes, Christianity and Islam are differently in many very significant ways. But, we also have a lot in common. Living in a Muslim country, I was reminded of His presence all the time, which stands out drastically to the way I feel participating in daily American life, which of course, is very “secular” for the most part. In America, I can struggle to feel God's presence and have been prone to times of doubt. In Morocco, those battles within weren't so present. The call to prayer five times a day sung out through the air, starting in the wee hours of the morn and ending at bedtime. It was Humdulillah when anything was worthy of being thankful for (or even when it was something difficult!) and Bismillah before meals. Words thanking God woven into the day, moment by moment, everywhere we went. It refreshed my spirit knowing that I was in the presence of other God-followers and I was pushed towards gratitude in all situations by their example. Certainly Muslims view God differently in some significant ways from how I do, but we also have so much in common. We both want to honor Him. And we believe He is actually… real. Growing up as a weird Jesus follower in public schools and in a culture where atheism and agnosticism often feel like the norm, this was really rather mind-blowing, and honestly, something like water for my weary soul. I never had to feel awkward or like I might offend or irritate someone for mentioning God! Instead, mentioning Him felt like it made an instant connection between us. It is easy for Christians to focus on the differences between Muslims and ourselves, but we need to remember the sweetness of all that we have in common - there is so much to bring us together, instead of separate us. No matter how much our theology may differ in some ways, we are all children of Abraham/Ibrahim, and our friendships can be so sweet and deep because... we both want to honor and follow God!