Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Oops (01/14/10)
TITLE: A missionary in Morocco
By harvestgal Ndaguba
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A Moroccan man approached her.
“Excuse me, do you speak English,”
“Yes,” she replied, reaching out her left hand and taking his. “I'm Denice, it's nice to meet you.” He blushed and quickly took his hand from hers.
“Ooops,” she thought, remembering in her inter cultural training class, she was never to shake a Moroccan man's hand, and especially not with the left hand, which they considered to be unclean.
“Nice to meet you Denise,” he replied. “I want to practice my English with you. Can we go over to that cafe and have a tea,” he asked pointing to the cafe across the street.
“Sure,” she replied, looking around for her partner, Katie.
Katie was no where in sight. “Ooops, We were always supposed to stay together,” she thought to herself. Still she didn't want to miss the opportunity to share the light of Christ with this Moroccan guy, especially, since he knew English.
They ordered a tea and Moroccan cookies with honey. The cookies were served on one plate for them to share, with one small bowl of honey for them to dip the cookies in. He took a cookie and dipped it in the honey and ate, so she followed. However, he looked very displeased. Then she remembered she'd taken the cookie with her left hand and Moroccans wouldn't even eat out of the same plate again if someone reached in it with that hand.
After chatting for a while, she asked if he was a Muslim. “Of course,” he replied. “To be Moroccan is to be Muslim. And what of you, are you Christian.?”
“Yes,” she replied.
“Did you come here to convert me,” he asked sarcastically. She was embarrassed and didn't know how to reply.
“No, No. I was just asking.” she replied. “Ooops, sorry Lord,” She thought in her mind, “I just lied.”
She had been doing everything wrong the whole trip, however she was determined to change that.
“Have you ever read the Bible?” she blurted out.
“I never even seen a Bible,” he replied. “But I read the Koran often.”
He proceeded to tell her about Mohammad and the Koran while criticizing the Bible and her belief in Jesus as God. She defended her faith and their discussion turned into more of an argument.
“Denise!” said a stern voice.
She looked up to see her team leader, Jill. She could tell Jill was more than a bit disappointed with her. She quickly reached in her pocket and gave him a small New Testament Bible in both Arabic and English and handed it to him with her left hand. After all, she was left handed and that was the hand she'd used all her life. He reluctantly took it.
“You can use it to practice your English, if nothing else. I've gotta go.” “Ooops,” she thought remembering she'd used her left hand again.
“Denise, I'm going to have to send you home. You don't follow the rules, you do everything wrong and you may end up getting the whole team kicked out of this country. Why didn't you stay with Katie. And you can't just give strangers Bibles”
“Ooops,” said Denise, too defeated to even defend her actions. “You're right, I probably do need to leave,” She sadly replied.
Six months after being sent home, she received a letter from the Moroccan guy she'd given a Bible. He'd found her address written in the Bible she had handed him. He wrote of how he'd read through that Bible 3 times and was interested in knowing more about Jesus.
“Ooops,” she thought to herself, “I guess God can even use a fool like me, despite all my mistakes.”
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