I want to state from the very beginning that this post is not about religion.
Since I am an American who lives and works in the Middle East for 10+ years — I have friends who are Muslim from what America/West consider to be “dodgy” countries – I like to share my experience from time to time.
A good friend from Lebanon is in Dubai, and he stopped by my office to say hello.
This friend is a very successful Lebanese businessman in his early 30’s. I frequently tease him because he looks exactly like the beautifully crafted Hollywood version of what the West considers to be a “terrorist.”
Throughout the time, I have known this Hollywood version of a “terrorist” looking young man, he has proven over and over again to be a brilliant, generous — true friend.
I introduced him to another close friend of mine who was leaving my office when he arrived.
My handsome, faithful “Christian” friend called me later in the evening about something unrelated, but he ended the call by telling me: “ be careful, your friend doesn’t look like someone you can trust…”
On my drive to meet this Christian friend with a pretty face for coffee this morning, I thought about what he said last night about me needing to be careful because my terrorist-looking friend doesn’t have a “trustworthy” face…
As I drove… I reflected over all the “trustworthy-looking” people (esp. Christians) who have stolen from me; betrayed me; cheated me, or simply just let me down (I can’t count that high) ….
Then comparatively, I thought of all the Muslim’s I have experienced as friends, staff, clients, etc … and yes, I have been let down by several, but only one was discovered to have cheated/stolen from me for many years — ironically, he was very handsome with a trustworthy face from India who worked for me for 10+ years.
To be fair, most of the people who have let me down/stole/cheated me, etc… they looked and acted like people to be considered trustworthy …
even some of the the most handsome or beautiful of them, unfortunately …. proved not to be worthy of trust.
So this morning, I called my good looking Christian friend … and I challenged (both of us) to reflect on his “judgmental” comment.
We got into a great discussion on the concept of “appearance” vs “deeds” vs “words” vs “actions.”
Let’s be frank — it is too easy to talk and look trustworthy.
In the end, it comes down to one’s deeds and actions … regardless of how good looking we might be.
I am a Christian.
And, I frequently challenge all my Christian friends to reflect on whether their deeds match their passionate words; are we leading our lives in the same passionate words or is it just spoken words said with the prettiest faces possible?
I challenge the reader to reflect on whether your deeds live up to your words and your pretty face.