2/9/11 Habib, about 45
At a McDonald's I asked a professionally dressed man if I could ask him a few questions, and he graciously agreed. He had a middle-eastern accent so I asked where he was from and he told me he grew up in Istanbul, Turkey, and moved to Chicago seventeen years ago. He is a Muslim, though he seemed kind of moderate in his beliefs, saying he doesn't observe the practice of daily prayers, and was quick to point out many things he feels Christianity and Islam have in common. I asked many questions about his faith, wondering if it is more formal, like an obligation or set of rules to follow, or is it more informal, like a personal relationship. We talked a lot about King David's relationship with God as reflected in the Psalms, many of which were very intimate and emotional. Habib, seems to have a more personal approach to God than other Muslims I've talked to. I asked what the Quran teaches about the authority of the Old and New Testaments. He said they are considered sacred texts and held in high regard, without error. We began to talk about the biblical claims about Jesus' divinity, and he said he just chooses to ignore them, not believing it possible for anyone to share God's divine nature. At this point, I had reached a certain level of trust, simply through asking questions and listening to Habib's point of view. He was now willing to hear more about Christianity, not because I was convincing him of anything but simply for the sake of having mutual understanding of one another's beliefs. Unfortunately, Habib was on a break and had to get back to work, so I gave him a "Why Christianity" booklet that compares Christianity to other religions, which he gladly received, and left the rest up to the Lord.