My Appointment with Omar

On Saturday night, my train was delayed and connection missed. There were no more trains from Leeds and I went to the ticket office expecting little sympathy. Knowing that God uses events in our life- even annoying ones- for His own glory, I did wonder what might happen. The train operator whose train was late provided me with a taxi back to Skipton. During that 25-mile journey, I got chatting with Omar, my driver. He was a good Muslim who hoped to go to heaven. He explained how hard he worked, and how he tried to follow his conscience rather than his ego. Much as I admired his piety, I shared that God’s standards are too high for us to keep. What we need is a saviour, for we are unable to be good enough. Omar didn’t like this. The more animated he became, the slower he drove, and I was keen to get home. 

He told me that if a man was drowning, he needs to reach out to catch the life jacket and put it on. In like manner, he insisted, God uses our good deeds to allow us into heaven. I conceded it was a clever point, but what if the drowning man was almost dead, unconscious and unable to reach out? What if the rescuer‘s efforts alone could save the drowning man? At this point, he changed the subject, explaining that the Saudi royal family were secret Zionists and had a built a palace for the coming antichrist in the desert. 

By the time we arrived at Skipton, we agreed to pray for each other- he that I open the Qur’an and realise the need to work hard for eternal life, I that he would reach out to the real Christ who offers full payment for his sin.

I’m not sure I got very far, but who knows what the Holy Spirit will say to him in the coming days, months or years. Truly, our appointment was arranged by heaven. Perhaps my train was delayed that Omar might spend an hour with a Christian pastor rather than the usual Saturday night drunks and letches.

Image by Brigitte makes custom works from your photos, thanks a lot from Pixabay