Some time ago, I was really upset with Muslim people. I asked all the questions:
- Why do they hate us so much?
- What is it about us that makes them so intensely desire our destruction?
- What had we ever done to them that was so truly awful and was beyond reconciliation?
I had done quite a bit of reading to try to figure that out, and no matter how much I read, it remained a puzzle. What was worse was that I returned animosity for animosity.
I set that subject aside for a while, to ponder it and perhaps come up with an answer that reflected some insight. Reflect, ponder, think, as I might, I could not come up with any clarity and my distress toward that faith remained.
I picked up Randy Alcorn’s Heaven book for our study group’s latest study, and I began to read through it with my study group. I became comfortable with Randy’s writing style, and with his flow of material and ideas. Some time after the study, I lent my book to one of my sister-in-laws, and went on to some of Randy’s other writing. (By the way, I can recommend any of Randy’s books, particularly the stories about the newspaper writer.) Other studies with our group came and went, and eventually I wanted to read some more in the Heaven book, so I bought another copy.
One night I was reading in the Heaven book about just what ‘the absence of God’ means, and I began to feel this incredible sadness descending upon me. I thought of the Muslim faith, and it became clear to me, like the pieces of a puzzle suddenly interlocking with a loud CLICK… and I suddenly felt an overwhelming sadness toward them:
“But they are lost.”
What an incredible impact upon me. In moments, my feelings of bewildered animosity were changed into ones of compassion and sadness for them.
I have thought of the people of the Muslim faith differently since then. Now I can pray that they find the Truth, and they may experience the joy that their sins are forgiven through accepting the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.