The Lord’s hand of providence was already seen before the trip even started. Some plans got changed, and I didn’t have a way to get up to New York, but at the last minute I was able to get a ride with a group from Georgia that I met in Greenville, SC.
We drove up to Roanoke, VA and spent the night in a Christian school, and we were off for the last leg of our journey early yesterday morning. We were making good time too until we got to the Holland Tunnel which bridges New Jersey and New York where we sat for about 2hr in traffic. We finally made it, though, to the Angel House and were able to settle in.
There was a huge festival in New York which accounted for all the traffic, and in every park they had some sort of party going on. Across the street from the Angel House in Thompson Square Park they were having the loudest booming music I’ve ever heard and presenting dances from all ethnicities and styles. The dancing was combined with a showcase that welcomed people to come and show their self-expression of art, so you can imagine the different people we saw.
I talked to the first person on a bus ride which was a long ride and gave me ample time to talk to him. His mindset is extremely post-modern, but he was very friendly and I enjoyed talking with him. He gave me his card where he worked and it said “Jokers: Tattoos and Body Piercings.” I’m thinking about looking him up if I have time and going out for a coffee or something with him.
I took the Northland group out to an Italian bakery where we got something to eat and it was amazing. On our way back we passed by an Islamic center and I suggested we stop in to see what its like and ask some questions. When we walked in, we were quickly confronted by a man I could barely understand. He said we were not allowed to be there with our shoes on or women who don’t have head coverings. We quickly left and as we were walking away, a higher up man came out and asked us what we wanted. I told him we were just interested in finding out more about Islam.
He told us we could come in and talk to the head guy called the Iman. We were put in a partitioned area where the Iman sat on the other side of the curtain so he wouldn’t look at the women. I asked him a couple basic questions about Islam and after he finished answering them, I asked for a Q’ran. They gave us one and we left.
I did meet a man who was introduced to us at the Islamic Center who didn’t know a lot about Islam, so he gave me his email address and phone number. I asked him if we could go out for coffee, and he said he’d like that, so I’m going to try to do that with him also this week.
Overall, it was a good day yesterday, and I’m looking forward to today. Continue praying for us that we would stay unified, and let the Gospel stand on its own and not feel like we have to win an argument when talking to people.