Monday, December 19, 2016
Jews, Christians, Muslims
I was genuinely touched today. Just for old time's sake, I walked into a little old grocery store on the corner of 27th and Holdrege Street in Lincoln. When I was a child, this was our grocery store, Diamond's Market. Mr. Diamond was an elderly Jewish man who was always so kind to our family. Whether we had coupons for food or not he always pretended we did and gave us deep discounts . Maybe it was because my dear mother had 5 children with her. As he was tallying us up at the register, he would always say that we forgot our ice cream, and I would get to go back to the freezer case and pick out a half a gallon of ice cream, free! It is now an African/Arabic/Muslim grocery store. Isaac, a Sudanese man, is one of the proprietors. We struck up a beautiful conversation about the store, about family, and about religion. As I got ready to leave, he urged to me to take a drink out of the refrigerated case. I was going to pick up a Snapple tea, but he suggested I take a bottle of this. Well, I thought exactly what you're thinking, that looks like beer! It is a middle eastern lemon flavored malt beverage and is non-alcoholic. It's actually pretty good. But here's the thing, this Muslim man, who knows I am a Christian Pastor, insisted out of the kindness of his heart that I take something as a gift from his store, 45 years after a Jewish man did the same thing for a Lutheran family. Made my day.