LOSTIN THEDENPastor in a Muslim Guesthouse:A thought on religiousdilemma of Jerusalem
INTRODUCTIONThis is not intellectual nor a professionalpresentationIt is my exploration of a dilemma that religion?Or Politics? Or God has thrown me intoJerusalem is a city that confounds, confusesand amazes all at the same timeWant to see my Jerusalem pictures, you willhave to wait but you can follow my Jerusalemdilemma.
CAUGHT IN IN THE DINToday Saturday the 15th of June, 2013, I set out to visitJerusalem and to pray.Torn between a huge health ‘balagan’ and my spiritualobligation to walk the streets where myLord, Jesus, walked, I chose to dash to Jerusalem.Why?I have been to Israel before but …I stopped at Tel Aviv and returned after one monthwithout seeing the holy city.
PERSONAL PRAYERSMy family member isseeking medical helpand the process iscrawling, real slow.I need Divineintervention and Ifeel Jerusalem,home to the threegreatest religions willoffer me succourNow, I don’t knowany more.My dilemma?
THE HOLY CITY?Is Jerusalem truly holy? Want to find out what I saw in my first hour here?Do holy people live here?Are those contesting possession of the city the holy ones? Muslims,Christians and Jews hotly proclaim Jerusalem as their ownDo holy things happen here really?Let my experience so far answer for me
HOW HOLY IS JERUSALEM?O I have been to the Chapel of HolySepulchre and I am amazed at the largenumber of people there.O I have met a South African, German (hesnapped me some pictures) and a NewZealanderO Other nationals that I have interacted withI do not know…but there were Jews,Muslims and Christians
HOLY JERUSALEMIn the hostel where Ihurriedly entered as theday was getting dark, Ican hear the Muslimscrying out their prayerright behind meI had paid beforediscovering this mix upand am asking myselfshould I get out? Notknowing my left from myright, can I go scoutingfor another sheltertonight?I am a Pastor and in myinnocence, I neverimagined what acomplex problemJerusalem was. But Iam willing to pass thenight here trusting onlythe Lord to guide me.What I heard from adistance is thrust uponme in vivid live colours.
NOT ALL HOLINESS IIITheUnpleasantJerusalem•You can get duped if you are not careful•A trader required me to pay 80 shekels for a perfumethat I eventually bought two for 40 shekels. And rightthere and then, another hustler came to offer three ofthe same for 30 shekels. Have I been duped? You bet!•A local, appears to be an Arab, he sold the perfumethat I bought offered to give me Russian ‘babes’ for thenight. Amazed? He was serious but apologised when Irevealed my identity as a Clergy.•Another trader offered me instant employment to flag inNigerian pilgrims to his shop. My take? Thirty percent ofany sales I attract. Nigerians must be feeding the cityfat with spending…
AM I REALLY LOST?If being a ChristianPastor in a territorycontrolled by Jewsand landing in ahostel owned andrun by Muslims isnot being lost, Idon’t know what is.Did you have thiskind of experienceof Jerusalem? Ican’t wait to hearyour dilemma.