February 24, 2013 in How does Memphis test your Faith? What gives you faith in Memphis?, Question of the Week by Nadeem Zafar
Memphis is a friendly city for all faiths. I do not think my faith has ever been “tested” for being in Memphis though there is an encounter that I remember, and that I found shocking and rude.
At one of the large whole-sale stores, many years ago, I was greeted with the Muslim greeting of peace by someone in the line behind me and as a reflex response I turned around and returned the greeting. The gentleman introduced himself as an ex-serviceman who had served in Iraq and had now returned. I thanked him for his service. I was then asked if I was a Muslim. I said yes!
Then the gentleman said that he is now a missionary and he knows he is going to heaven and asked me if I knew where I was going after my death. I thought that was very rude and in the face. I politely responded that I had no written guaranty from the Almighty that I was going to heaven and that I had to earn heaven through my words and actions, but above all hope and pray for Divine Love and Mercy. Other than this incident, I have never found my faith to be tested by anything Memphis.
What gives me faith in Memphis? The caring people, my friends, and the Gospel in the air. Even those who face many challenges in life, including hunger, are very willing to share whatever little they have with others. An excellent example are the children at Bellevue Middle School and how successfully they have run the Kids Kan campaign to fight hunger for the last 21 years.